My granddad. More enigma than Bletchley Park.

Trying to work out my granddad's service history. I suppose the easy route would be to contact the Army Records Office but where would be the fun in that? Besides, it'll be interesting to see whether the ARRSE experts can make sense of it.

To add to the challenge, I won't put all of the information in the first post and we'll see how things pan out. Suffice to say, in my own amateurish way, I've researched via the net some of the information and the obvious answers don't seem to add up. Things are not helped by my brother and I having different recollections of what we were told more than 35 years ago.

So, to start... Granddad was born in 1901 and was therefore too young to be invited to end WW1. Nevertheless, he joined the army. He served in India between the wars as well as, according to my brother, also in Ireland. He also served during WW2 but I'll come to that in a future revelation.

We don't seem to have confirmation of his service number but I recall my mother telling me that she remembered it because it began with 10 and successive pairs of digits each added up to 10. The second and third pairs repeated. For some reason, I had it fixed in my mind that it was 10737364 but I'm also conscious that i was told that this number was incorrect.

I've looked up the entry for service numbers on Arrsepedia and, if my understanding is correct, there are only two possible service numbers that fit the above conditions and both would be in the same unit.

First challenge then - what would be his service number and what unit would he have joined? Bonus marks if you can narrow down the year of enlistment.

And a question to facilitate future revelations - how long did people sign up for in the early 1920s?
 
We don't seem to have confirmation of his service number but I recall my mother telling me that she remembered it because it began with 10 and successive pairs of digits each added up to 10. The second and third pairs repeated. For some reason, I had it fixed in my mind that it was 10737364 but I'm also conscious that i was told that this number was incorrect.
Was mother also at Bletchley Park?
 
Christ on a crutch, chap! Just tell me what his name is-I don't have enough years left to guess someone else's Service number :cool:
His name will come later when we get to WW2 - unless you need it to work out his service number in which case I might relent.
 
His name will come later when we get to WW2 - unless you need it to work out his service number in which case I might relent.
bollocks to his service number!

Wouldn't matter much anyhoo as WWII service records are not in the public domain yet.

But certain of the inter-Wars medal rolls ('Palestine') and the 'Palestine 1945-48' clasp Rolls are: so, give me a name so that I can get him born, married and killed off . . .
 
I’m no expert but an eight-digit service number is post WW2. My grandfather joined in Jan 1939 and did not have a service number that long.
Not sure how that tallies with your theory of tens, though.
 
I’m no expert but an eight-digit service number is post WW2. My grandfather joined in Jan 1939 and did not have a service number that long.
Not sure how that tallies with your theory of tens, though.
In 1920, a new numbering system was introduced-prior to that date, individual Corps and Regiments issued their own, regimental, number. Thus, several men could serve with the number '1234567' for example.

The 1920 system was 6 and 7 digits and in blocks: thus, 1 to 294000 was RASC, 294001 to 299000 was Life Guards and so on.
 
In 1920, a new numbering system was introduced-prior to that date, individual Corps and Regiments issued their own, regimental, number. Thus, several men could serve with the number '1234567' for example.

The 1920 system was 6 and 7 digits and in blocks: thus, 1 to 294000 was RASC, 294001 to 299000 was Life Guards and so on.
Thanks, that’s interesting. My grandad enlisted into the RA and it was a seven-digit number.
 
...or we could all just spend out time more productively on the "Fancy a bit of Ginger? NSFW" thread.
 
I`m coming up with two units based on the 10 prefix to the service number, and the subsequent pairs each adding to 10....

Royal Army Service Corps 1 - 294000 and 10660001 - 11000000 (1073----)

Intelligence Corps 10350001 - 10400000 (1037----)

Edit: and another one....

Royal Army Pay Corps 7657001 - 7681000 and 10400001 - 10500000. (1046----)
I don't know how I missed those - I spotted Army Catering Corps 10630001-10655000 for 1064xxxx.

All the same, how would these match the collar dogs below?

granddads collar.jpg
 
No, that's the second block, which would have been allocated after the first block (i.e. a good bit later).
Presuming that the Arrsepedia entry hasn't got several typos, it seems as though a good many of the Corps went straight into an 8-figure number - Int, Recce, Catering, PT, Pioneer, General Service, REME, as well as the Lowland and Highland Regiments.
 
Presuming that the Arrsepedia entry hasn't got several typos, it seems as though a good many of the Corps went straight into an 8-figure number - Int, Recce, Catering, PT, Pioneer, General Service, REME, as well as the Lowland and Highland Regiments.
All formed during WWII though, after the other number blocks had been allocated.
 
That looks a bit like a flaming grenade badge but the middle bit looks a bit thin. That doesn`t tie up with the corps though ?
A lot of corps who served with other units wore their host unit's insignia during WWII. Seen it quite a few times on photos of Catering Corps personnel etc.
 

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