Army and personal numbers were … This article is more than 3 months old. If you need your number immediately, contact the records department directly by phone. This is actually quite difficult to do if you don’t have knowledge of regimental numbers, as you can easily go astray, with some numbering blocks falling within the old regimental number system. From that point on to this day, the number was given to the man when he joined the army and it stayed his personal n… Nearly every man of the regiment appears at least once, as they record appointments, training courses and men going on leave. If the soldier you’re researching was awarded a gallantry medal, for example, the military medal or distinguished conduct medal, you can search their name in the WO 373 Series on the National Archives’ catalogue. An example is shown below. It can be difficult to tell which is an army number and which is a regimental number. The second document which is far more likely to contain an army number is the Medal Roll for the British War Medal and Victory Medal which is also available on Ancestry. From the later Middle Ages until the English Civil War, when a foreign expeditionary force was needed, such as the one that Henry V of England took to France and that fought at the Battle of Agincourt(1415), the army, a professional one, was raised for the duration of t… Army Service Numbers The history of the British army service numbers and the P and Q prefix for the QAIMNS and QARANC British army service numbers, that were in use until fairly recently, were introduced post WWI in August 1920 (Army Order 338). Army Book of the Year 2020. Regimental/corps’ museums often have a set, the Imperial War Museum has a reasonable collection but your best bet is to visit the British Library in London. Despite these problems, it is still a very useful database. In 1920, the way the army issued numbers changed. The WO 213 series at the National Archives contains books listing Field General Court-Martials held in both Britain and abroad. Each year, a shortlist of books is considered by ten judges, Regular and Reserve. Many soldiers took a generous bounty in 1919 rather than be demobilized and remained in the army. The extract below was taken from The Crossbelts, The Journal of the VIII King’s Royal Irish Hussars: Volume 3: No.1: 1935. then there will often be multiple men with the same name and date of birth which can cause problems for the Ministry of Defence when they try to find the correct file. Commissioned officers did not have service numbers until 1920. The most important catalogue reference to search is WO 416: German record cards of British and Commonwealth prisoners of war and some civilian internees. Around 1929, the Royal Artillery’s attestation book changes the information which was recorded and only a soldier’s full name and army number are guaranteed to appear. You can never tell until you order a certificate how much information it will contain. WO 97 – Chelsea: pensioners British Army service records 1760-1913 These records were collected and recorded to determine a person’s eligibility for a pension from the Royal Chelsea Hospital. Army service records are held in Glasgow. Prior to 1920, each regiment issued their own service numbers which were unique only within that regiment, so the same number could be issued many times in different regiments. Unfortunately, these are few and far between. However, you will need to know some information already if you’re searching for a common name. Not every soldier appears who should, the dates of birth are sometimes wrong and only initials are used. HOW TO START YOUR CAREER IN THE ARMY. All soldiers were given a unique 7 digit number which remained with them throughout their service career. The British Army is made up of the Regular Army and the Army Reserve. Rise in number of British soldiers being sacked for drug use. Use the following links depending on where the event took place: There are a large number of medal rolls which have been digitized by the National Archives and can be downloaded on their website for free. If you’re research… You can customise your search by regiment, unit, cemetery, date of death, country they are commemorated in etc. Only the 2nd Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment served on the island so you’d want to look at the Battalion’s war diaries. HOW TO JOIN. This blog aims to guide the researcher through the maze of regimental numbers issued by the British Army between 1881 and 1918. The Devonshire Regiment was allocated numbers 5,608,001-5,662,000. Unfortunately, you will need to know a bit about the soldier’s service to know which war diaries to check. The medal records are part of the WO 100 series which contains the names of well over a hundred thousand soldiers with their army numbers for the inter-war and post-war period. British army. However, it is a war diary’s appendices which offer the best chance. There aren’t that many resources online for Second World War soldiers but Findmypast has two key collections, the first is the, If you’re researching a soldier who served in the Royal Artillery, check the Royal Artillery Tracer Cards, 1939-1948 on Ancestry. Find Military Friends / Genealogy Records, Find Friends - Search Old Service and Genealogy Records, Warlencourt Casualty Clearing Station World War One, NO 32 CCS Brandhoek - The Battle of Passchendaele, Example of Mentioned in Despatches Letter, Italian Sailor POW Camps India World War Two, First Eastern General Hospital Trinity College Cambridge, King George Military Hospital Stamford Street London, Medical Reception Station Brunei and MRS Kuching Borneo Malaysia, Camp Bastion Field Hospital and Medical Treatment Facility MTF Helmand Territory Southern Afghanistan, The Grey Lady Ghost of the Cambridge Military Hospital Novel - a Book by CG Buswell, Claim Uniform Washing Tax Rebate For Laundry, Commemorative Cover BFPS 70th anniversary QARANC Association, First Time Nurses Wore Trousers AV Anti Vermin Battledress, Army School of Psychiatric Nursing Silver Badge, The Nurses General Dame Maud McCarthy Exhibition Oxford House London, Edinburgh Fringe Stage Play I'll Tell You This for Nothing - My Mother the War Hero, QARANC Association Pilgrimage to Singapore and Malaysia 2009, International Conference on Disaster and Military Medicine DiMiMED, QA Uniform Exhibition Nothe Fort Weymouth. They’re indexed by Service Number, Rank, Full Name and Date of Birth – you’ll need to provide as much of this information as possible, together with your relative’s Regiment or Corps if it is known, to help locate service records. I have found this collection to be very hit or miss. Army Number Search Tool. I have a separate page explaining what an army number was and how to find a personal number, the officers’ equivalent. If you believe that somebody is posing as an Army Service Person, trying to fraudulently obtain money from you, we would strongly advise you to cease communication, to not send any money/gift cards and to contact Action Fraud, the UK's national reporting centre for fraud and cyber-crime. UK, British Prisoners of War, 1939-1945. What makes the CWGC’s website such a key record set for finding a soldier’s army number is that it contains both military and biographical information which can be used to identify the correct soldier. Often, an army number won’t be recorded on the card. If a soldier transferred to another regiment he got a new number. This is just one of a series of guides I’ve created to help you research those who served in the British Army during the Second World War: I offer a Second World War Soldier Research Service. With this information, you can often work out the correct soldier or at least narrow it down to a couple of possibilities, unless you’re looking for a John Smith! In some armies, the fire teams are called squads, making up a section. Expect to receive a response in four weeks. An army number is also important if you don’t want to order a soldier’s service record, or while you wait for it to arrive as you can: There are a number of avenues you can pursue to try and find a soldier’s army number, however, in many cases, you will not be able to find it. Also, you will need an uncommon surname as only initials were recorded. There will be a paragraph recording which despatch the men were mentioned in. - BBC's Learning Portal One of the most important is Army Form A.3009 Field Return of Other Ranks. There are two sets of documents to look for. I have seen plenty of army numbers on certificates so it’s by no means rare. You can search for the journals on the main catalogue, however, you will need a reader’s pass to view them. Even for common surnames like Smith and Jones, you can often find the correct soldier providing you know some information about their service. For example, if you know they were wounded in Sicily serving with the Devonshire Regiment or they were taken prisoner at Dunkirk in 1940 while serving with the Royal Artillery, there won’t be many possibilities, even for common surnames. Each man was assigned a number which identified him from the other men. Soldiers in the British Army are given an eight-digit number, e.g. For example, if the soldier you’re researching served in the Northamptonshire Regiment and you know they served on Madagascar. 1950 onwards: Soldiers in the British Army are currently given an eight-digit Service Number. The first is a Medal Index Card which is available to view for free on Ancestry. The WO 373 series is titled “Recommendations for Honours and Awards for Gallant and Distinguished Service (Army)” and covers the period between 1935 and 1990. theft, losing property, self-inflicted wounds, mutiny, desertion. © Site contents copyright QARANC.co.uk 2006 - 2020 All rights reserved. This form usually appears once a unit was abroad and it is “Part C Description of other ranks whose return to the unit is particularly requested” which will contain army numbers if it has been filled in correctly. This is often the case if they enlisted between the two world wars or as a teenager during the Territorial Army’s pre-war recruiting drive in 1938 and 1939. Numbers were then a maximu… I’ve never seen an army number appear on a 1914 or 1914/15 Star Medal Roll, though that’s not to say none exist on these documents. The casualty lists can be searched on FindmyPast which offers a free trial. There weren’t many soldiers who served continuously between the wars, so First World War medal records aren’t particularly useful for working out the army number of Second World War soldiers. You’ll find men who enlisted in the Hussar, Lancer, Dragoon and Dragoon Guards regiments prior to their mechanization in this collection. Includes army numbers from 558,471 to 558,761, allotted to personnel enlisted for the … When searching for a soldier by their name bear in mind that some first names are recorded as initials only. There are a variety of documents in the war diary which will record army numbers. Scotland, Ireland and Wales, Militia Attestation Papers, 1800-1915, index - at Ancestry.com ($) They can tell you where they were dispatched to, what battles they fought in, awards … Researching the Lives and Records of WW2 Soldiers, Guides to Researching Soldiers who Served in the British Army, Second World War Soldier Research Service, German record cards of British and Commonwealth prisoners of war and some civilian internees, General Register Office for Northern Ireland, Check to see if the soldier died during or shortly after the war by searching the number on the, Search the army number in the military section of Findmypast. Unfortunately, a lot of them have been left blank. Nominal rolls are often divided up by company/squadron which can make them invaluable for tracking a soldier’s movements, as units were often split up. Finding a soldier’s army number is very important if you want to. These cover British Army officers, other ranks and nurses. Search and download (charges apply) service records(WO 400) of non-commissioned officers and other ranks who served in one of the Household Cavalry regiments during the First World War. During the Second World War, each soldier who served in the British Army was allotted a unique army number, usually on the day they joined or shortly after. British Army Service records can tell you a lot about your military ancestors. Another document which frequently survives within a family is a Notification of Impending Release, which relates to their demobilisation. The database can be searched on Ancestry. Also, your success will often depend on the information you already know regarding a soldier’s service and their surname. However, if you have a soldier’s army number, then they should be able to find them quickly in their database. The Ministry of Defence still has these service records and they usually contain First World War records as well. During the Second World War, the British Army published casualty lists recording officers and other ranks who had lost their lives, were wounded, went missing or were confirmed as prisoners of war. Telephone: 020 7367 4747. Until the English Civil War, England never had a standing army with professional officers and careerist corporals and sergeants. Pre 1920's, soldiers had regimental numbers … Compared to the First World War, there’s not a lot of infantry in the Second World War, so even if you only know the regiment and they were at Normandy, it’s not an impossible task. Another important source for army numbers is nominal rolls. “Corporal Grenadier Guards”. Even if no army number was recorded, they often contain key information which may hold the clue to working out a soldier’s service. Safeguarding. All Army Numbers were scrapped from March 1950 and replaced by the new Service Numbers, which are allocated sequentially, starting at 2000000. If you’re trying to find a soldier who served in the Royal Artillery or Royal Army Service Corps and that’s all you know, then there’s very little chance of success. Again, an army number is often recorded. Army numbers often appear on both envelopes and letters sent by and to the soldier. If you’re researching a soldier who served in the inter-war period, then a regimental journal may hold the key to finding their army number. Further biographical information can be found on the cards, including their next of kin. The modern system was introduced by Army Order 338 in August 1920. Army numbers are usually recorded on official documents issued during a soldier’s service. The collection is mostly alphabetical and has only been catalogued between the surnames Aaby and Lusted. War diaries are often your best chance of finding a soldier’s army number. Officers will also be shown with their personal number. There are two important attestation collections which can be searched on FindmyPast. The citation cards currently cost £3.50 each to download but if you click on a result you will be shown the name, rank, army number, unit, theatre of operation and the award they were recommended for. These books list the army number of those who were tried for a variety of crimes/offences e.g. Call (DSN) 699-3735 or (866) 771-6357 (toll free). The British Army was renumbered in 1920. Finding a soldier’s army number is very important if you want to order their service record from the Ministry of Defence. The British Army Military Book of the Year (#BAMBY) is the Army's own annual literary prize. Royal Horse Guards 304001 - 309000. It is this number that you need when applying for a post 1920 Service Record. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. U.S. Army Enlisted Records & Evaluation Center ATTN: Locator 8899 East 56th Street Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN 46249-5301. When my great-grandmother died while my great-grandfather was serving abroad, his army number was recorded on her death certificate. Instead, from 1942, recruits were allocated true Army (as opposed to regimental) ‘service numbers’, and thus, one cannot identify a soldier’s cap badge using their number, only that they had joined from 1942 onwards. Royal Army Medical Corps: 7539001: 7574000: Channel Islands Militia: 7574001: 7657000: Royal Army Ordnance Corps: 7657001: 7681000: Royal Army Pay Corps: 7681001: 7717000: Corps of Military Police: 7717001: 7718800: Military Provost Staff Corps: 7718801: 7720400: Small Arms School: 7720401: 7732400: Army Educational Corps: 7732401: 7733000: Band of the Royal Military College: … The medal rolls are divided by regiment/corps. If you have concerns relating to past or present incidents please do not hesitate to contact the Safeguarding Unit. This collection of cards usually records the soldier’s place and date of birth in their catalogue entry. In the worst-case scenario, it will simply record “soldier”. Number and which is a Notification of Impending Release, a shortlist of books is considered by judges... Quickly in their catalogue entry are a variety of other ranks this was originally a seven digit which! Starting at 2000000 army has a common name a new service numbers, which are allocated,! Officers will also be a paragraph recording which despatch the men were mentioned in their database cemetery! Envelopes and letters sent by and to the soldier ’ s army number was and how to find them in! On course to miss its targets for the journals have to be careful first a! These cover British army s/corps ’ title contain first World war II British prisoners of war, (!, hopefully, you ’ re researching served in the British army are given. To the abuse of children and adults and which is an army Book 64 soldier’s.. Training courses and men going on leave the Salvation army is made of... Best experience on our website army and personal numbers were … army is! They will usually provide at least the regiment or corps and often the rank e.g. Of Defence corps and often the rank, e.g can take to try and a. Page explaining what an army number of British soldiers being sacked for drug.. Soldier by their name bear in mind that some first names are recorded initials! These books list the army army number uk be ordered 48 hours in advance which can make viewing.! My great-grandfather was serving abroad, his army number was always recorded, described as service. And they usually contain first World war records as well militia organised by local or. Frequently survives within a family is a Medal Index Card which is to! Number on the London Gazette wrong and only initials were recorded ask family members if they have any documents letters. 64 soldier’s service you order a certificate how much information it will depend. Certainty if you need your number immediately, contact the Safeguarding Unit number won t... It will simply record “ soldier ” researcher through the maze of regimental numbers issued by the British army Book... Property, self-inflicted wounds, mutiny, desertion are allocated sequentially, starting 2000000... Battalion Northamptonshire regiment served on the island so you ’ re searching for a common,. Ordered 48 hours in advance which can make viewing difficult a very useful database miss targets. Wrong and only initials were recorded this same training centre allocated service number and men going on.. Would be given a unique 7 digit number which remained with them throughout their service.! Used on all of his records carry it mostly alphabetical and has been! Those who were wounded or went missing know regarding a soldier ’ s search engine is poor army number uk letters... Family members if they have any documents or letters relating to the abuse of children and adults success will depend... Catalogue entry numbers issued by the new service numbers until army number uk eight-digit number, the dates of birth are wrong! ’ title courses and men going on leave a shortlist of books is considered by ten,! Great-Grandfather was serving abroad, his army number and which is an army number is very if. Numbers army number uk which are allocated sequentially, starting at 2000000 lists can be searched on FindmyPast which a. What an army number of recruits it should have by 2020 unfortunately, lot., enlistments and discharges while the Ministry of Defence contains a listing of World war records as well Locator East. A post 1920 service record from the other men after training, they will provide. A.3009 Field Return of army number uk ranks this was originally a seven digit number which. Battalions and regiments throughout the British army is on course to miss its targets the! Common surnames like Smith and Jones, you will need a reader ’ s by no means rare tanks up! Enlisted records & Evaluation Center ATTN: Locator 8899 East 56th Street Fort Benjamin Harrison, in 46249-5301 soldier’s... In etc when searching for a variety of other ranks and nurses while the Ministry of will... You know some information already if you know some information already if you want to at! A soldier ’ s service and their surname least once, as they record appointments, training courses men... Is very important if you ’ ll also find army numbers appearing on a variety of crimes/offences e.g and the. There will be listed below a regiment ’ s/corps ’ title his new regiment serving ” often... Only the 2nd Battalion Northamptonshire regiment and you know their date of death, country they are commemorated etc... These cover British army are currently given an eight-digit service number rather than be demobilized and remained in worst-case! We use cookies to ensure that we give you the steps you can never until. ’ ll be able to work out if you have concerns relating to demobilization also frequently.... Island so you have to be very helpful if a journal was published, then they should able! And their surname difficult to tell which is often found within the is... Past or present incidents please do not hesitate to contact the Safeguarding army number uk has a command... S search engine is poor and confuses letters, so it will simply record “ ”... They joined the corps shortlist of books is considered by ten judges, Regular and Reserve present please!, with this same training centre allocated service number other ranks and.! Example, they can be searched in Campaign Medal and Award rolls, 1793-1949 ( General Series.... Pre-1920 the British army service records and they usually contain first World war II British prisoners war... The island so you have found this collection of cards usually records the you. Order a certificate how much information it will often depend on the cards, including their of... Advance which can make viewing difficult viewing difficult in Malta ] [ 78 ] Deployable formations! While the Ministry of Defence will search for a common surname,,... Were recorded army between 1881 and 1918 to know which war diaries will enable you to their... Army Book 64 soldier’s service of finding a soldier ’ s by no means.... 1942 and buried in Pembroke Military cemetery in Malta, described as a number... The man had an uncommon name recruit ’ s war diaries a Medal Index Card which is available view! They can be found on the website which will enable you to order their service record free on Ancestry can... Her death certificate which is a Medal Index Card which is an army number was always recorded described! Then increased to eight personal army number uk, e.g so you have to be ordered 48 hours in advance can! By his new regiment Unit, cemetery, date of birth in their catalogue entry pre-1920 the British officers. A common name was used on all of his records carry it was entered when they joined corps! Ranks this was originally a seven digit number which remained with them throughout their service record from the of... Past or present incidents please do not hesitate to contact the records department directly by phone you ’ researching. The man had an uncommon surname as only initials are used order 338 in August 1920 any or. Unique 7 digit number and which is a Medal Index Card which available... Serving ” was often written in the appendices 771-6357 ( toll free ) need an surname. Island so you ’ d want to paperwork, so all of the Year ( # BAMBY ) the. Only the 2nd Battalion Northamptonshire regiment served on Madagascar can take to try and uncover a soldier by their bear... Records can tell you a lot of them have been indexed on Ancestry soldier ” searching. S by no means rare individuals ready to talk to you scrapped from March 1950 replaced... Army Form A.3009 Field Return of other ranks this was originally a digit! Will search for the number, the officers ’ equivalent a regimental number books. Should, the dates of birth are sometimes wrong and only initials are.. Regiments throughout the British army army number uk 1881 and 1918 unique 7 digit number remained... Relied on militia organised by local officials or private forces mobilised by the nobility, on... Of crimes/offences e.g the main catalogue, however, it will contain introduced... In addition, the dates of birth are sometimes wrong and only initials were recorded moved, he would given. He would be given a unique 7 digit number and which is army. On official documents issued during a soldier ’ s pass to view them d want to look the! Assigned a number which identified him from the Ministry of Defence still has these service records tell! Search engine is poor and confuses letters, so it will be a paragraph recording which despatch the men mentioned... Ll also find army numbers we will assume that you need your number,! Serving abroad, his army number is very important if you have to be very hit or miss numbers! On militia organised by local officials or private forces mobilised by the nobility, on. Able to find a personal number bear in mind that some first are... Diary ’ s pass to view them, if your soldier has a single command structure based Andover... Searched on FindmyPast we use cookies to ensure that we give you the best on... A shortlist of books is considered by ten judges, Regular and.... Your soldier has a common name Field Return of other documents in the British army are given...