Monday, 19 November 2018

The Last Post

Tuesday saw the culmination of many months work with the hosting of our ‘Gone but not forgotten’ event. 

Commemoration Garden

Your King and Country Need You!

On the 11th August 1914, the now famous ‘Your King and Country Need You’ slogan was published, calling for 100,000 men to join Lord Kitchener’s new army. The call was answered within two weeks. Amongst them was Brian Crossley. 

Your King and Country Needs You © IWM (Art.IWM PST 0581)

Thursday, 8 November 2018

Bravery in the Field

With only a few days to go until the Together Trust hosts its commemoration event‘Gone but not forgotten’ on Tuesday 13th November, the charity has been looking in more depth into the history of those who fought. 

There are a number of historical documents available, which give more information around the men who fought in World War One. Records can range from generic genealogy records such as census data, revealing addresses and family details pre-enlistment, to more specialised documents such as workhouse registers, industrial school files as well as charity records, such as those provided by the Manchester and Salford Boys’ and Girls’ Refuges and Homes.

In terms of military papers many soldier’s personnel records remain, including the British Army Service Records. The collection contains a myriad of army forms including attestation papers, medical forms, discharge documents and pension claims. These can be accessed through the genealogical sites such as Find My Past and Ancestry. For those who fought in the Canadian Regiments, the Library and Archives Canada is an excellent resource for discovering relatives war records. These have been digitised and are on open access to the public.

Index cards were created by the Army Medal Office towards the end of the World War One recording the medals that men and women who served in the War were entitled to claim.

Service Medals for WW1
All those who served in World War One received service medals. The main campaign medals received were the 1914 or 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal, sometimes nicknamed 'Pip, Squeak and Wilfred'. These were issued in recognition of an individual’s service in Britain overseas during the war during a particular period or in a particular role.

Other medals were issued as military decorations in recognition of bravery. One such medal was the military medal. This award was established on 25th March 1916, with retrospective application to 1914, and was awarded for "acts of gallantry and devotion to duty under fire".

Eric Renshaw received the military medal. He was a sergeant in the Liverpool Regiment and received the medal in 1917. It was reported in the Edinburgh Gazette on the 17 July:

“His Majesty the KING has been graciously pleased to award the Military Medal for bravery in the Field to the under mentioned Non-Commissioned Officers and Men.” 

Eric Renshaw

The reason for this award has not been given but it was reported in the charity’s magazine, the Children’s Haven, with great pride:

“Sergeant Eric Renshaw has won the military medal, we feel very proud of him and pleased one of our old boys has been so honoured.”

Eric had been admitted to the Crossley Home on the 16th August 1890 at the age of 7 along with his brother John. His father had been dead for 3 weeks on account of ‘alcoholic poisoning’ and his mother had died of a ‘broken heart’.

We will be honouring all those who fought in World War One next Tuesday. We do hope you can join us then.