Grandads hidden past

I was always told that my grandfather had a long and colourful service in the infantry by my mother, but he has never wanted to talk about it, for reasons known only to him. I always had a lot of respect for his wishes, but at the same time I'm intrigued to know how his career panned out. Armed with only his name and service number, is there any way I can find out anything about him? (Tours, decorations, etc.)
The problem you will have is that if the Gentleman is still alive then his records are personal property and cannot be released without his permission...or if dead then you need the permission of the next of kin.

Or that was the rules last time i applied for documents.


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