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The Birmingham Pals in the Great War

Steve R

master brummie
More pictures of the Pals to follow but I thought I would show a few Pals related items.

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The first items demonstrate the skill of Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter. When the uniforms were issued there was no need to wear the lapel 'Mufti' badge an example of which I posted earlier in this thread. This one has been fixed to what appears to be a silver snuff box

The second and third picture are the same item. The lapel badge has been turned into a pendant for a loved one to wear to remind them of their soldier husbands and boyfriends. This pendant opens up to show the picture of an unknown soldier and a female.

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
Her are some examples of what was done with the Pals buttons unique to their blue uniforms. Once these were exchanged for khaki.


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Two pendants made from Pals buttons. The first does have a very faint photograph of a Pals soldier wearing the distinctive Pals cap badge. The second has a nice colour picture of a Pals soldier, again wearing the distinctive Pals cap badge.
 

Steve R

master brummie
Here are two items that came with a group of medals belonging to Private 1157 B W J Alexander.

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The Lapel badge has a gold bead around the edge now and a pin affixed to the back. The Cap badge has had its two scroll filled in with Enamel. The slider that once run down the back to fix it to a cap has been removed and a pin runs across the back of the scrolls making both of these item broaches.

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
Finally some buttons turned into broaches

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Three example of buttons taken from the blue uniforms and now having pin fixings at the back. Another type of sweetheart broach.

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
Interesting post card this one.

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Both men in the picture are Birmingham Pals but I am not sure of their identity. Looking at the rear of the picture it has been sent to A Cresswell at the Parade Ground Powells Pool. My records show a private 833 Creswell of the XVI Platoon in D Company 2nd Birmingham Pals. These soldiers trained in Sutton Park. The card was only posted from Wylde Green looking at the stamp but also has Malvern Stamped on it so I presume the card has been redirected having reached the crossed out Mrs Cooper from Malvern who was probably his landlady and redirected by her to the soldier now living in huts within the Park?

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
Another unusual post card


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The chap centre back has not taken this pic very seriously at all. He is wearing his cap back to front and has his tongue out. The rear of the card has Charlie Lodge The Royal Warwickshire Regiment 15th Service Battalion ( 2nd Birmingham Pals)

Perhaps the chap fooling around is Charlie? In any case from my research 'Charlie' is Pte 219 Charles Lodge Platoon No III A Company the 2nd Birmingham Pals.

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
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A group of four soldiers from the Warwickshire Regiment. The guy on the right is wearing the Pals Cap badge. This is certainly very late in the War, perhaps when the war had finished as the chap on the left has four overseas service stripes on his right arm and the definite Pals soldier on the left has two wound stripe on his left arm, two of the men have what appears to be Military Medal ribbon on their left chest area.

Chalked on the wooden door of what may be a French building is the 5th Division Emblem to whom the Pals belonged and this appears to be where the signal once were. At a guess I would say this was four Sergeants having a 'keep sake' picture before demobilisation but I will never know for sure.

Steve R
 

maypolebaz

master brummie
I agree Steve, and what an interesting picture this is. I'm tempted to think there's a rubbed-out "Orderly Room" on the right hand panel.
I can't remember ever seeing bayonets carried like that before either.
 

Steve R

master brummie
Maypolebaz

I took it as that. I wander if they were related I will see if I can find a Tom Creswell, probably in the 3rd pals who went to Malvern to continue training.

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
Friends who know I often travel to the Somme ask why I go and what is there to see. I think it is the scale of sacrifice that draws me to the Somme and I wish to pay my respects by placing crosses for myself and other people who cannot make it overseas. Most fighting took place in trenches out in the middle of large fields below are some items found in the last two years brought to the surface by the farmers plough. The first is a spoon issued to a British soldier. The second is a shirt button from a British uniform and the third is an unexploded 'mills bomb' or hand grenade in modern language. This is followed by an unexploded Artillery shell and a British uniform buckle.



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Steve R
 

Attachments

Steve R

master brummie
More items in the fields

the first is part of a Bullet and the second is a piece of leather from a boot or equipment followed by a complete live bullet in the Somme mud.

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Many of the items that remain could well have been made in Birmingham as Peace time industry transformed into war time production. The Kynocks factory produced millions of rounds of riffle ammunition and artillery shells.

Steve R
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
hi steve those photos are a stark reminder of battles fought thanks for sharing them with us...mills munitions was of course situated in bridge st west and we do have a thread for it if you are interested

lyn
 

Steve R

master brummie
More relics from the Somme and all taken from the fields where the Birmingham Pals fought



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1st is a stock pile of artillery shells in a farm. The second is a British Stokes Mortar rounds, the third was taken in the same farm as the first and the fourth shows a German clip of five live rounds.

Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
This is the grave of the first Birmingham Pal to be killed in action. Together with the other soldiers of the three battalion 1202 Arthur Hackett landed on the 21st November 1915. There then followed a long March to the front lines and he was then one of the first to enter the trenches to spend time with other seasoned soldiers to gain experience in the trenches. Sadly on the 8th December he was killed by a sniper, his was a short war but there were many more Birmingham Pals to die in this war.

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Steve R
 

Steve R

master brummie
One of the nicest Birmingham Pals items that I own
I presume this was put together by the soldiers love one or mother. Very nice case when once opens reveals a picture and the words 173 Private Vincent Charles Reeve of the 15th Battalion (2nd Birmingham Pals)

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On the right is one of the medals he was entitled to have, this one being his 1915 Star and what I presume was his Mufti badge issued when uniforms were in short supply to show a man was serving. The description states he was killed on the 16th June 1916 only 19years old. The CWGC states has him listed as being in the Fauborg D'Amiens Cemetery in Arras France. He gives his parents address of 170 Alcester Road Moseley.

Steve R
 

michael barnes

New Member
This next postcard has a nice date for use of February 1915. No 5 class under CSM North

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Hopefully the picture will show that several of the men are named. Similar the previous picture I posted but this one states it is the 14th Battalion Royal Warwickshire regiment meaning the 1st Birmingham Pals.

Steve R
Dear Steve. Please may i have permission to include your sports images on the Birmingham Pals website www.birmighampals.co.uk which is undergoing extensive updating. Full acknowledgement would be given. I would probably locate them at
 

Steve R

master brummie
Hello
Yes, you may use any image I have posted on this site that you wish. Thank you for asking. Send me a PM if you think I can help any further.

Steve R
 

maypolebaz

master brummie
I've come late to this one.
Looking closely at the photo of No. 5 class I'm fascinated by the fencing masks on the ground. Those men must've been on a bayonet fighting course.
More interesting, for me, is that two of the men have "Sgt, Bantams" written across them.
I've heard of Bantams Battalions but I don't think I've ever heard of any in Brum. Does anyone have any info on them ?
 
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