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hmorrison

Gnr George Herbert Costello 273935 RH & RFA

21 posts in this topic

ID: 1   Posted (edited)

Evening All,

 

Wonder if I could reach out for some assistance please.... I have been asked by a local historical society to give a talk on my Grandfather George Herbert Costello (Bertie) 1898-1973 - Bertie started his career in the RH & RFA - then joined the RIC - followed by the British Gendarmerie in Palestine - before his final jobs as Gamekeeper for the Guinness family at Ashford Castle in Cong Co Mayo and Shoot Organiser for Lord Oranmore & Browne.  

 

I put my hands up and admit I'm not so hot on military research (but I'm learning!).... I have so far been able to put together some information for my presentation on his time in the RIC and in Palestine, but I'm struggling with his British Army detail.  I have been unable to find a medal card for Bertie but I have his Character Certificate which gave his No and Rank (see attached).  From his diary I know he was stationed as follows:-

 

a) Royal Field Artillery (RFA) Barracks Athlone, 
B) Signal Section, 7th Reserve Brigade RFA, Salisbury Plain, Larkhill Camp
c) 7th Reserve Bde RFA, Warren Heath Camp, Ipswich, Suffolk
d) 130 Brigade, Army of the Black Sea, Constantinople
e) 28th Division, RAHQ Constantinople.    

 

I live in Ireland so unfortunately don't have the benefit of being able to visit Kew at short notice to research (I have to give the talk in two weeks time!!!!!).  I found a file ref WO 95/4908 which may have given me some idea of what his regiment movements were in Constantinople but the file isn't digitised so I'm out of luck there.

 

Luckily my grandfather was a hoarder so I have some photos/memorabilia to use in my presentation (see attached) but I would really like to be able to talk about what life was like for him in the above mentioned a) to e) and what his military movements were... ie what was role of 130 brigade in Constantinople (and how did they get there!) - I presume his time in Salisbury Plain and Ipswich was for training - what type of signals did he use (I know he used mirrors in Palestine but one of the attached photos show flags and his uniform appears to have crossed flags on the lower sleeve) - what would his role have been at RAHQ? Any assistance anyone could provide in helping me build a picture of what his time was like in the British Army would be much appreciated.

 

Fingers crossed some of you will be familiar with the RFA regiments mentioned above.   

 

Bertie was a man very much in tune with his surroundings and I hope my presentation when it's done will do him justice.  For any that are interested, I have posted many of Bertie's photos on the forum http://irishconstabulary.com/topic/1559/George-Herbert-Costello.  

 

Many thanks, in anticipation. :D


 

20170412_163156.jpg.968d0d2a476fb2f36c652a74dc721cfd.jpgBertieCostelloDSquadIpswich_zpsa89feb00.jpg.dd788708091a2053514ccdb14cab090e.jpgapp00011_zpsa8873e59.jpg.306c3411969c49157312810cb78c1cb1.jpgGrandad.jpg.3d0a65da32ff462b155eb5b49f09635f.jpgapp00006_zpsfe3e5f0d.jpg.189bfa27b24d80b679b54c6dc5777bbf.jpg58ee7faec476d_ApostcardsenttomygrandmotherwiththewordingThisisGalattaBridgewhereyoucrossfromoneparto-oul.ItwasonthisbridgetheArmeniansweremassacredduringthewar..jpg.720e8490818e3cd02d81422edd04f13c.jpgImage205_zps8f6f2c8c.jpg.316142c9b1e706e994a73a0fdf4d1421.jpgapp00017-Copy_zps7fdabe8e.jpg.8a521c85b01c92079338ca33e7ca4c68.jpgImage236_zps278605ac.jpg.18e715fd0f0385f15579fd5355b76134.jpg58ee7fd5c6f7b_MassacreoftheGreeksandArmeniansbytheTurksduringthewaruntilthearrivaloftheBritishtroopsinTurkey.jpg.7c85ed76209fe9028433a0fef090e965.jpg58ee7fda0863e_SignallingSection7thRes_Bde.R.F.A.DorringtonCamp.jpg.53eb3e40196fb583bb3806a6a3c2484f.jpg58ee7fdb8764e_TramwayMap.jpg.faf4b392bacb93cab0c72185de7c8562.jpg58ee7fd72dab9_ReverseofTramwayMap.jpg.3f4f32c7818003dedefd16e7b8e976ea.jpg58ee7fdd837e2_TurkishRailwayTicket.jpg.05fd1f510b9622eb17196c6383b24dc7.jpg58ee7fdef33e2_TurkishRationTicket.jpg.8cafbd573604854487a46941311dc8aa.jpg58ee7fd8be857_ReverseSideofRationTicket.jpg.38fb344ea182855a11eb4eb062c63b5b.jpg58ee7fe10d717_Writtenonthereverseofthispencilwrittenpassfrom22ndAugust1919grantedtomygrandfatherwasa-slikeS.C.Moar9CranbrookRoadThorntonHeathCroydonSurreyLondon.jpg.9848230334eb38f01bc9529736f5ad77.jpg

 

    

 

 

Edited by hmorrison

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19 minutes ago, hmorrison said:

Royal Field Artillery

is this him?

First name(s) G. H.
Last name Costello
Age 20
Birth year 1899
Birth place Birmingham
Attestation year 1919
Service number 1031144
Former service number 29505
Record set Royal Artillery Attestations 1883-1942
Category Military, armed forces & conflict
Subcategory Regimental & service records
Collections from Great Britain

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Hi Jonbem.  No that's not my George Herbert Costello.  My grandfather was born in 1898 in Westport, Co. Mayo, Ireland and his number was 273935.

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all I can find is something you probably have, good luck with your search

George Herbert Costello

Find A Grave Index

Other information in the record of George Herbert Costello
 
from Find A Grave Index

Name George Herbert Costello
Event Type Burial
Event Date 1973
Event Place Westport, , County Mayo, Ireland
Photograph Included Y
Birth Date 22 Aug 1898
Death Date 04 Aug 1973
Affiliate Record Identifier 146327782
Cemetery Knappagh Graveyard

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Yes that is him Jonbem - I uploaded those details on Find A Grave some years ago - but thank you so much for trying.  My real hope is of finding someone who can fill me in on the history of his regiment so I can understand where he served and what he did.  Fingers crossed. 

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found this...

http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/order-of-battle-of-divisions/27th-division/

 

27th Division

The history of 27th Division

As regular units from the further garrisons of Empire arrived back in England, having been recalled soon after the declaration of war but many having waited until a Territorial unit had gone out to replace them, they were formed up into three Divisions, numbered 27th to 29th. The 27th was formed at Magdalen hill Camp near Winchester in November-December 1914 and was soon rushed as a much-needed reinforcement to France. Shortage of some types of units were filled by Territorial units taken from other Divisions. It embarked at Southampton and landed at Le Havre on 20-23 December 1914 and then moved to concentrate in the area between Aire and Arques. The Division subsequently took part in these actions:

1915
The action of St Eloi
The Second Battle of Ypres

The Division was ordered to Salonika in November 1915 and embarkation began on 17 November, but it was not until 13 February 1916 that the last of the Division finally arrived.

1916
30 September – 2 October 1916: the capture of Karajakois
3-4 October 1916: the capture of Yenikoi
17 November and 6-7 December 1916: the battle of Tumbitza Farm

1917
14 October 1917: the capture of Homondos

1918
The Division lost a number of units in mid 1918; they were transferred to France
1-30 September 1918: the final offensive in Salonika, including the capture of the Roche Noir Salient (1-2 September), the passage of the Vardar river and pursuit to the Strumica valley (22-30 September)

Hostilities with Bulgaria ceased on 30 September, with the Division by then in the area Kosturino – Rabrovo – Cestovo. The Division continued to advance and passed Krupnik by the end of October. 27th Division was ordered to halt and turn about on 2 November, embarking in December for operations on the Black Sea. It reached Constantinople on 19 December and opened HQ at Tiflis in January 1919. The Division was not disbanded until 24 September 1919, by which time it was at Batum.

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I had read this piece but had disregarded it as it was the 27th Division.  As mentioned, my understanding of military history isn't quite up to scratch, so forgive my inexperience in asking how does the 27th Division relate to the 28th Division which my grandfather was in?

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It was all that I found so just in case it helped

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ID: 9   Posted (edited)

hmorrison,

 

As you have probably worked out, your grandfather joined No.5 Depot RFA at Athlone in October 1918. He was then sent to No. 7 Reserve Brigade (TF) at Durrington Camp, Wiltshire. This Reserve Brigade moved to Warren Heath, Ipswich by the end of February 1919, but you diary may have a more accurate date.

According to Becke's "Order of Battle of Divisions, Part 1", 130th Brigade RFA were at Haidar Pasha in April 1919. The brigade consisted of 22 Bty, 118 Bty and D (H) Bty. They had moved there from Salonika with 28th Division. The brigade had left 28th Division in Turkey by April 1920, so presumably your grandfather returned to the UK with them and was transferred to Class Z Army Reserve on January 13, 1920.

 

EDIT: Just noticed the Pass dated August 1919 when he was with 28th Divisional Artillery HQ which looks like his last posting

Edited by David Porter

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Would George Costello's medal card be one of the ones lost in the blitz does anyone know?  

 

Also - I notice in the picture of the 'NCO's and canteen staff' that the women are wearing uniform and regimental (?) cap badges. Was this usual for canteen staff?  

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3 hours ago, Peter Mc said:

Would George Costello's medal card be one of the ones lost in the blitz does anyone know?  

 

 Costello would not have been awarded any medals as he did not serve in a theatre of war , so no MIC

 

Following is an extract from the National archives

 

8. Appendix 1 – First World War campaign medals and what they were awarded for

 

Medal Awarded for

 

1914 Star For service under fire in France and Belgium, 5 August – 22 November 1914. Includes sailors serving ashore.

1914-1915 StarFor service in all other theatres of war, 5 August 1914 – 31 December 1915; and for service in France and Belgium, 23 November 1914 – 31 December 1915.

British War Medal For service abroad (including India) 5 August 1914 – 11 November 1918, or 1919-1920 in Russia.

Victory Medal For military and civilian personnel who served in a theatre of war.

Territorial Force War Medal For members of the Territorial Forces who joined before 30 September 1914 and served in a theatre of war between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918.

 

Regards Ray

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On 13/04/2017 at 11:08, David Porter said:

hmorrison,

 

As you have probably worked out, your grandfather joined No.5 Depot RFA at Athlone in October 1918. He was then sent to No. 7 Reserve Brigade (TF) at Durrington Camp, Wiltshire. This Reserve Brigade moved to Warren Heath, Ipswich by the end of February 1919, but you diary may have a more accurate date.

According to Becke's "Order of Battle of Divisions, Part 1", 130th Brigade RFA were at Haidar Pasha in April 1919. The brigade consisted of 22 Bty, 118 Bty and D (H) Bty. They had moved there from Salonika with 28th Division. The brigade had left 28th Division in Turkey by April 1920, so presumably your grandfather returned to the UK with them and was transferred to Class Z Army Reserve on January 13, 1920.

 

EDIT: Just noticed the Pass dated August 1919 when he was with 28th Divisional Artillery HQ which looks like his last posting

David unfortunately I haven't worked out anything as I really just don't seem to understand military history!!!!! The more I read, the more confused I get.  I see grandfather doesn't have a medal as he wasn't "in a theatre of war", so what was he doing he Constantinople if it wasn't a war situation?????? His diary doesn't mention any dates at all - is Durrington Camp the same as Sailsbury Plain?  Do you know what they would have been doing during their time in these camps at Athlone/Durrington/Warren Heath? Googling 130th Brigade and Haidar Pasha doesn't give me any information on why they were there or what was happening in April 1919????  And why were they in Salonika????  Don't understand either what Class Z Army Reserve means (home time?????? ;-) ).  I just seem to be going from one google search to another and getting no information - slight panic mode now due to frustration of non-comprehension despite much efforts.  I Need a Military Manual for Dummies!!!!!!      

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The Occupation of Constantinople was regarded as a post war situation from a medals point of view. Should you be interested in general details, aOfficial History was written about Constantinople titled The Occupation of Constantinople 1918–1923 by Brigadier-General J. E. Edmonds. Originally written in 1944, it was not finally published until 2010 by Imperial War Museum/Naval&Military Press.

 

The FIBIS Fibiwiki page Norperforce  contains a short section The British Salonika Force and the Army of the Black Sea, https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Norperforce#The_British_Salonika_Force_and_the_Army_of_the_Black_Sea

"Immediately after the Armistice with Turkey orders had been issued for British troops to move to the Caucasus, due to the situation there. Troops were sent from the nearest British forces available, from North Persia [Mesopotamia Force], and from the Salonika Force.[2] In January 1919 it was decided all British troops in the Caucasus should be under one command, which at that time was still called the British Salonika Force, subsequently known as the Army of the Black Sea,[3] which was tasked with ensuring that Turkey complied with the terms of the Armistice".

 

Constantinople became the Headquarters of the Army of the Black Sea.

 

There are also a few online links on this Fibiwiki page about Constantinople eg 

 

There is also a FIBIS Fibiwiki page  Salonica and the Balkans (First World War)

https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Salonica_and_the_Balkans_(First_World_War)

Under the devil's eye : the British military experience in Macedonia 1915-18, by Alan Wakefield and  Simon Moodypublished  2011, seems to be the recommended book for the Salonika campaign. There was also the Official History, in two volumes: 

Military Operations Macedonia compiled by Captain Cyril Falls  Volume I: From the Outbreak of War to the Spring of 1917 Volume II: From the Spring of 1917 to the End of the War.

 

Cheers

Maureen

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7 hours ago, hmorrison said:

His diary doesn't mention any dates at all - is Durrington Camp the same as Salisbury Plain?  Yes, it is just east of Larkhill, misspelt Dorrington on your photo

 

Do you know what they would have been doing during their time in these camps at Athlone/Durrington/Warren Heath? Training to be a gunner/signaller

 

Googling 130th Brigade and Haidar Pasha doesn't give me any information on why they were there or what was happening in April 1919????

It was an Army of Occupation after hostilities had ceased as Maureen has detailed above. Isolated disturbances there but no major action.

 

 And why were they in Salonika????  Your grandfather didn't go there but the 28th Division were there during the war.

 

Don't understand either what Class Z Army Reserve means. It is explained near the bottom of the page herehttp://www.1914-1918.net/reserve.htm

 

 

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Maureen and David, thank you both so much for these two previous posts - your replies "in lay mans terms" have helped so much (actually woke up in a sweat last night over not being able to understand the military terminology and the prospect of having to give my presentation looming!).  The gap between wanting to learn and not being able to understand was unbelievably frustrating.  Happy Easter all. 

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I suspect my mention of the Order of Battle caused the most confusion. Anyway, I've had a closer look at some records to confirm his date of arrival at Athlone, when he got given his number. John Wright arrived on September 28, 1918 and was given 273899, John Burnett arrived on October 12, 1918 and was given 273967. So George Costello arrived there sometime between these dates. Both of these other men were also posted to No. 7 Reserve Brigade (TF), on October 9 and October 19 respectively, only after about a week or so at Athlone. This also leads me to think his Character Certificate on transfer to Class Z was altered (first picture above). It should read 1 year 97 days, which is correct for October 8, 1918 to January 13, 1920, but someone added 100 days !!.

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Some great info given - thanks. I completely missed that he never served in a theatre of war. So Bertie served in 3 uniformed forces - the army, police and gendarmerie - and left without a single medal to show for it! 

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Bad timing Peter wasn't it for Bertie - 3 forces, approx. 8 years, clean conduct, and nothing to show bar photographic evidence of his great interest in his surroundings! Kinda sad really.  

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David thank you so much for the additional info.  Interesting about the extra 100 days!  I am now beginning to piece together the steps of Bertie's life timeline with your help.  Any record of his service with British Army is the minimal I have myself here from his personal file or photos, is there any official documents anywhere that I cold view/access on his service or that of his Bde? 

 

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The War Diary of 130th Brigade RFA goes up to November 1919, but you need to visit the National Archives at Kew.

The reference is here - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7360859

The War Diary of the Commander Royal Artillery, 28th Division, goes up to December 1919, again a visit to the National Archives at Kew is required.

The reference is here - http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C4558057

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Thanks David I had found those references alright but as you say a trip to Kew is necessary, but would definitely be out of the question before the talk this coming Wednesday - next time I travel to UK I will make a point of visiting the archives, too late for the talk but would love to have the detail for my own information anyhow.  Would the British Army not have a service file for Bertie???? I wonder if the two men in the photo above may be Wright and Burnett - Bertie unfortunately didn't have the picture captioned?

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