Save these WWI Records

#1
I copied this off the family history site I hope everybody will lend their support

As we go to press, it has come to my attention that in April the MOD
intends to destroy some 6 million records of medals issued to WW1
personnel. I think you will agree that we cannot let them do so.

Our military expert Paul Reed has been looking into the matter and it
appears that the private facility used by the MOD to hold the records at
Hayes wants to relocate and charge the MOD for moving the cards. The
MOD's response is to get rid of the 140 filing cabinets that contain the
4-6 cards. The National Archives doesn't want to take on the cards
because it has already microfiched them and the microfiche has been
digitally scanned
see http://www.documentsonline.nationalarchives.gov.uk

This isn't good enough. This is the only complete and untouched record
of First World War soldiers left. Other service records were burned
during WW2. Only the fronts of the cards have been scanned and we
believe that written on the back of many of these cards is the address
that the medals were sent to. Often, it isn't possible to determine
whether the record of the medals issued relates to your ancestor or
another person without checking this address.

First, the cards need to be preserved. They then need to be scanned
properly, front and back, and re-indexed. If the National Archives
won't step in, perhaps someone else will. The Imperial War Museum? The
Veteran's Association?

The MOD claims its holds copyright on the cards and that it can do what
it wishes with them. I'd argue that these cards are part of the
nation's heritage. They are public records, and I'd remind the MOD that
the descendants of WW1 soldiers pay their taxes. The cards remind us of
the enormous sacrifice and loss incurred by men and women in this
country during WW1, and of their bravery in adversity. They enable the
children and grandchildren of those who died, and those who survived, to
find out some of
the lost details of their forebears.

To save the cards we must take action. We're instituting a campaign to
urge the Minister of Defence, Geoff Hoon, and the Director of the
National Archives, Sarah Tyacke, to prevent the destruction of these
records straight away. Address your letter to us and we'll pass it on
to these authorities:

Rt Hon Geoff Hoon & Sarah Tyacke
Save the Medal Index Cards
c/o Your Family Tree
30 Monmouth Street
Bath BA1 2BW

Alternatively, send an email headed 'Save the Medal Index Cards' to us
at yfted@futurenet.co.uk

Do it now - the records are due to be destroyed in April.

Garrick Webster,
Editor, Your Family Tree"
 
#2
Done,
 
#5
What will they do next to save a quid?.
 
#7
This shows the real attitude of those civil servants lording it over Fort Fumble towards those who earned their gongs the hard way.

I am struck by the irony of this action occurring as a new VC is awarded.

I wouldn't be surprised if Pte Beharry found a 'Best Before' date on the reverse!
 
#8
Having been one of only so many whom have had a relative die in the Great war, i am outraged by this, there is a hertitage here that must be preserved.

Kids now days think of the 1st world war as some film they have seen, and not that it actually happend.

I have talked with the guys in my office (all Kiwis) and they too cant believe what buff hoon is now trying to do.

Its like they are using this well deserved medal Beharry hopefully gets, is being used as a cover for them to implement this policy.

My email is now sent, and i know the lads here are going to be sending some aswell!
 
#10
Ditto. I'm not sure how widely known this is. I'm sure that the academic departments that have some specialisation in WW1 research would be rather irritated about this, so will mention it to appropriate people as well....
 
#11
Also done..

My grandad never knew his dad (born 1917, his dad died a month earlier), all we have now is a mention on the memorial@arras and these records were on about.
 
#12
Posted to Sir George Young this evening via his website:

Sir George,

I wondered if you were aware of the following information that I have reproduced here from a military website I frequent:

'As we go to press, it has come to my attention that in April the MOD intends to destroy some 6 million records of medals issued to WW1 personnel. I think you will agree that we cannot let them do so.

Our military expert Paul Reed has been looking into the matter and it appears that the private facility used by the MOD to hold the records at Hayes wants to relocate and charge the MOD for moving the cards. The MOD's response is to get rid of the 140 filing cabinets that contain the 4-6 cards. The National Archives doesn't want to take on the cards
because it has already microfiched them and the microfiche has been digitally scanned.

See www.documentsonline.na...ves.gov.uk

This isn't good enough. This is the only complete and untouched record of First World War soldiers left. Other service records were burned during WW2. Only the fronts of the cards have been scanned and we believe that written on the back of many of these cards is the address that the medals were sent to. Often, it isn't possible to determine
whether the record of the medals issued relates to your ancestor or another person without checking this address.

First, the cards need to be preserved. They then need to be scanned properly, front and back, and re-indexed. If the National Archives won't step in, perhaps someone else will. The Imperial War Museum? The Veteran's Association?

The MOD claims its holds copyright on the cards and that it can do what it wishes with them. I'd argue that these cards are part of the nation's heritage. They are public records, and I'd remind the MOD that the descendants of WW1 soldiers pay their taxes. The cards remind us of the enormous sacrifice and loss incurred by men and women in this
country during WW1, and of their bravery in adversity. They enable the children and grandchildren of those who died, and those who survived, to find out some of the lost details of their forebears.

To save the cards we must take action. We're instituting a campaign to urge the Minister of Defence, Geoff Hoon, and the Director of the National Archives, Sarah Tyacke, to prevent the destruction of these records straight away. Address your letter to us and we'll pass it on to these authorities:

Rt Hon Geoff Hoon & Sarah Tyacke
Save the Medal Index Cards
c/o Your Family Tree
30 Monmouth Street
Bath BA1 2BW

Alternatively, send an email headed 'Save the Medal Index Cards' to us at yfted @ futurenet.co.uk

Do it now - the records are due to be destroyed in April.

Garrick Webster,
Editor, Your Family Tree"

Yours sincerely, '

I have included the full text as this message is being passed around various military based websites and should generate support.

I hope you will agree that it is ludicrous to destroy such an important part of thousands of people’s family history.

I am ex military having left the Armed Forces (Army) in Sep 04. I also am aware of one of my great grandparents who was killed during the Great War and it is my intention to head to London in the near future to research his military record. This may now obviously need to take place by Apr 05.

Hopefully you will be able to lend your support in trying to prevent this action taking place. You may also like to point out to Geoff Hoon the strength of feeling being generated about this issue. He may actually find an issue that could earn him some respect from both serving and ex-military.

Many thanks for your time.
 
#15
faxyourmp.co.uk/

This site didn't let me proceed as they stated that the material had already been submitted (or something like that). Then went on to say that I should put details in my own words etc.
 
#16
Surely a university can take this on? Keele have the entire RAF Air Intel collection photos in their possesion , so why can't another university take this on.

Hell, dare I say it, I'm damn sure an American would step in if approached.

Actually , if this was America, this bloody well wouldn't be happening.
 
#17
Murielson said:
faxyourmp.co.uk/

This site didn't let me proceed as they stated that the material had already been submitted (or something like that). Then went on to say that I should put details in my own words etc.
They don't want their service used for a 'cut and paste' campaign. This could lead their faxes be construed as junk faxes, resulting in them going straight in the bin.

msr
 
#18
msr said:
Murielson said:
faxyourmp.co.uk/

This site didn't let me proceed as they stated that the material had already been submitted (or something like that). Then went on to say that I should put details in my own words etc.
They don't want their service used for a 'cut and paste' campaign. This could lead their faxes be construed as junk faxes, resulting in them going straight in the bin.

msr

I've just used it successfully. Okay, you can't cut and paste but so what? Spending 5 minutes knocking out a letter to your MP has got to be easier than reading in a months time that the Govt has put even more of our history to the torch.

Given the news today, it would be an idiot of an opposition MP that didn't see the obvious opportunity to try and score points against the Govt. The more publicity the better.

Get typing!
 
#19
Hi

This morning I emailed Nicholas Soames MP regarding this and have just received a reply from his research assistant.
They were not aware of this pending action and are going to investigate it fully.
Perhaps the outcome will be good, I have never had a reply so quick before when emailing an MP.

piper4
 
#20
I was at the PRO today and noticed that they will be on strike for the whole of the 23rd if anyone is planning a visit.
 

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