1885074 John Allan MacGregor R.E. - service records help

Discussion in 'Royal Engineers' started by Fiona Creighton, Feb 4, 2022.

  1. I would be very grateful for any enlightenment on the attached record. Thankyou in advance. Fiona.

    Attached Files:

  2. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    Fiona, sorry to see that you haven't had any replies, hopefully this will draw your post to the attention of others who will chip in, meanwhile here is my go.
    Firstly this is a pretty good site for abbreviations:
    Second World War Abbreviations and Acronyms - Researching WW2

    5.12.39 Royal Engineers Signal Training Centre, Passed trade test and mustered draughtsman A3 (Topographical), Fort Southwick, rank sapper
    15.6.40 Posted 517th Corps Field Army Survey Company ? Caergwrle
    A/U/L/Cpl - Acting unpaid lance corporal
    5.1.41 Embarked for overseas service (Home i.e. in UK)
    9.3.41 Disembarked MEF (Middle East Force)
    10.4.41 Embarked for Greece
    24.4.41 Disembarked Egypt
    28.5.41 Posted Army Interpretation Unit, relinquishes lance corporal and reverts to sapper on joining
    6.9.41 Posted Army Air Photo Interpretation Unit
    24.7.41 Promoted Acting unpaid corporal, granted pay acting corporal
    22.10.41 Confirmed war substantive rank of corporal having held paid acting rank for 90 days
    20.2.42 Promoted Acting unpaid sergeant, then paid for rank same day
    28.7.42 Reverts to corporal (158 days to count to war substantive sergeant
    30.7.42 Discharged hospital to xi Auxiliary Air Photographic Intelligence Unit
    28.7.42 Reinstated acting sergeant
    19.8.42 Appointed war substantive sergeant
    29.9.42 Proceeded to PAIFORCE (Persia & Iraq force)
    19.3.43 Proceeded to ? Command Headquarters and SOS (struck off strength) of this command
    Candidate for RE Commission, Inform all casualties
    15.7.43 Posted to X5c from X4a (remain at ? awaiting officer cadet training unit
    X lists see here
    X lists (Service Records)
    Reference Part 1a 479/2 (?) of 6.8.43 Delete all reference
    3.6.43 TOS MEF taken on strength Middle East Force from PAIC (? not sure presume Paiforce) and posted X4a
    3.11.43 SOS struck off strength Command to India, Embarked Suez
    21.11.43 Disembarked Bombay, posted OYS (not sure)
    12.4.44 SOS posted OTS (Officer training school) Bangalore
    4.6.44 Admitted hospital TOS X2 [note that he doesn't appear in the casualty lists as a battle injury so would presume this is illness or disease]
    9.6.44 Discharged hospital SOS X2
    13.10.44 Discharged as Officer cadet
    14.10.44 Emergency commission Second Lieutenant
    London Gazette entry Page 621 | Supplement 36912, 26 January 1945 | London Gazette | The Gazette

    Also found his RE card that can be read in conjunction.
    RE Card 1.jpg RE Card 2.jpg RE Card 3.jpg RE Card 4.jpg
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  3. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    1939 @ 23 Milton Road, Southampton, presumably working at the Ordnance Survey
    CL1 likes this.
  4. Alex1975uk

    Alex1975uk Well-Known Member

    Where are those cards to be found please?
  5. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    Alex1975uk likes this.
  6. Thanks a lot - that is a great help. I don't understand all the rank ups and downs. Was that typical at the time ?
  7. Yep, Field Surveyor at Ordnance Survey on the South Downs.
  8. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    Not too many downs - he started as a sapper which is the REs equivalent of private, next rank up is lance corporal, then corporal, then sergeant, he followed this route.

    On promotion it was usual to start as acting/unpaid, then acting/paid before being confirmed.

    The only time his rank went down was when he was in hospital from 28/7 to 30/7/42 when he went from Acting Sergeant to Corporal. When soldiers were incapacitated they reverted to their substantive rank. However, in this case looks like his recovery overtook the paperwork and he was reinstated immediately.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2022
  9. Thankyou - that makes sense now.
  10. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

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