Frederick George Bragg
(Photo taken about 1919)
Going to Fred’s Statement
of Services of No. 6/38898 (record sheet) he was deemed to have been
enlisted on the
18th February 1918 and called up for service on the
21st February 1918.
On his Record of
Service Paper Fred is enlisting with the 53rd (Young Soldier)
Battalion Leicestershire Regiment. His age is 18 and 33 days, his home address
is Beaumont Leys farm, Anstey and his trade is Farm Carter. It is signed by
Fred on the
21st February 1918 in Leicester.
On his Descriptive
Report on Joining Fred’s height
was 5’ 7 ½ “tall and his chest measurement, girth when fully expanded 37 ½“, a
range of expansion 3”. His next-of-kin is his father George living at Beaumont
Leys farm, Anstey.
On his Medical History
Report it gives his weight at 145lbs and shows the dates of when he had his
vaccinations. It also
mentions that he does have a hernia which is not
sufficient to cause rejection but does cause him a problem later on while serving
in the army.
The 53rd (Young Soldier) Battalion
Leicestershire Regiment was a basic recruit training unit
who were stationed at Rugeley Camp which were one of two camps on Lord
Lichfields Estate in Staffordshire. Fred was here from the 28th
February to the 12th May.
On the 12th May Fred was posted to the 51st
(Graduated) Battalion Leicestershire Regiment a training unit based at
Clipstone Camp in Nottinghamshire which later relocated to Thoresby also in
Nottinghamshire. He trained here until he was
posted to the “K” Expeditionary
Force on the 12th August 1918.
During his training Fred spent 4 days between 29th
June and 2nd July in a *field ambulance when he got influenza. (Admissions to Hospitals Sheet)
* Information I found on the
Field Ambulance, it was a mobile front line medical unit (it was not a
vehicle), manned by troops of the Royal Army Medical Corps.
On the 13th August Fred embarked from Dover to
France arriving in Calais on the same day.
On the 15th August Fred is compulsorily
transferred to the Essex 10th Regiment and allotted a new service
No. 44955. He joined the battalion on the 18th August.
On the 20th September Fred is sent to the
C.C.S. (casualty clearing station) suffering from the effects of a gas shell.
Looking at his Active Service Paper
Fred spent a couple of months in various locations in France recovering before
re-joining the 10th Essex on 9th December.
After WW1 we know Fred was still in France in Rouen on
the 23rd February 1919 as it is recorded on his Active Service Paper concerning his hernia which had caused him to
be classified as sick around a month earlier. In fact in a Report on Accidental and Self-Inflicted Injuries it reports that
Fred has a right inguinal hernia and was being sent for advice regarding an
operation. It also states that he had the hernia before joining, it’s dated 16th
February. In a Memo from the O.C. of
the 10th Essex to the O.C. of the 56th field ambulance it says that
no one knows of anything regarding Fred’s hernia, dated 19th
It was not long after this Fred had an operation in
France on his hernia, it is recorded that he was sent back to England on the 12th
From the 13th March to the 27th
March Fred spends his time recovering from his operation at Fazakerley General
Hospital in Liverpool. (Admissions to
On the day of his discharge from hospital Fred was given
leave to return home from the 27th March to the 5th April.
At this time he is still with the 10th Essex regiment who were stationed
at Warley Barracks at Warley near Brentwood in Essex. (Army Leave Form W.3016)
Fred is posted to the 3rd Essex regiment on
the 10th April not sure if he goes over to Ireland with the regiment
or goes over to join the regiment who are already there. The 1st Essex
regiment is based at Kinsale in County Cork
In Ireland the period between 21st January
1919 and the 11th July 1921 was known as The Irish War of Independence, it was a guerrilla
war fought between the IRA and the British army.
On a patrol Fred suffered
a head wound when there were ambushed by the IRA, according to his daughter
Joyce and son Ken the wound came by the way of a rifle butt, a policeman who
was with the patrol managed to get away and get help.
Due to his injurie of
a scalp wound Fred is in hospital
between 20th June and 22nd July, which we believe was the
Central Military Hospital, Victoria Barracks Cork, he is then
transferred to another military hospital which we think could have been in
Queenstown (now Cobh) near Cork. He is here from the 22nd July until
his wound heals and he is discharged on the 2nd August. (Admissions to Hospitals Sheet)
Fred is posted to the 1st Essex Regiment on
the 1st September.
On a Service
and Casualty Form it states that Fred was compulsory retained on the 4th
July unsure what this meant but at the time he was in hospital on the same form
when he is serving with the 1st regiment it says that Fred is too
proceeded to? It’s dated the 5th November just shortly before he
leaves the army was he on his way home?
Not sure on the date Fred
came out of the army but his Protection Certificate and Certificate of
Identity (soldier not
remaining with his colours) is stamped dated for the
Found this information on a Great War forum about the protection certificate and certificate of identity,
“Each soldier and officer received one. When a man was demobilised he was sent
home on leave for a number of weeks, his military service officially
terminating at the end of the leave. The certificate was proof to the police
and other pertinent authorities that he was not a deserter etc.”
On Fred’s Statement
of Services of No. 6/38898 (record sheet) it is stamped that on the 6th
December 1919 that he is Transferred to Class? Army Reserve on Demobilization.
On leaving Fred signed a Statement as to Disability form to say that he was not going to
make a claim in respect of a disability due to military service.
I came across a Company Conduct Sheet that Fred was
reported on twice for overstaying a late pass first offence is dated
6th May 1919, unsure
where he was stationed as unable to make out the place name, second offence is dated 1st September 1919 at Charles
Fort the British barracks for the 1st Essex regiment based at
Kinsale in County Cork
Two other documents that I downloaded on Fred, a Casualty Form Active Service and a Casualty Accident Form,
Any document that is mentioned above that is in blue and underlined can be clicked-on to open a seperate page that shows a copy of the original document.