1531476 Reginald James DOGGETT, Royal Artillery: POW

Discussion in 'Malaya' started by Charley Fortnum, Jan 11, 2020.

  1. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member


    There is something amiss here.Postwar RAF servicemen posing at a Luftwaffe scrap grave.

    I recognised immediately the new type working blue blouse which was not issued during the war....my working blue blouse in 1952 was a wartime issue with manufactured date of. if I remember correctly,1941.I would say that the new type of working blue blouse came in about 1950 but old blouses would be issued until stocks were exhausted.There was no such problem with the best blue tunic as it remained as it was during the war.

    Further the technical ranks as I will expand on, did not come in until about 1950 which also put a further classification of SAC (three props) above LAC and under Corporal.

    The technical ranks introduced were as follows,all with inverted stripes.

    One stripe inverted.................Junior Technician......this is our man and he would be a Fitter in his trade designation.
    Two stripes inverted................Corporal Technician
    Three Stripes inverted.............Sergeant Technician
    Three Stripes inverted with a crown on top (as found as on a Flight Sergeant's uniform)......Chief Technician.

    When the V bombers entered service,the RAF adopted a maintenance structure where a Chief Technician became the dedicated "Crew Chief" for an individual squadron aircraft.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2020
  2. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    I'm grateful for that Harry.

    The wreckage had me jumping to the conclusion that this was a wartime photograph, but your information makes that impossible unless a time-machine was in use.

    I'll have a rethink and start searching along postwar RAF lines, but I don't have much to go on.

    Does this picture of the plane offer any clues, do you think?
    1531476 Reginald James DOGGETT, Royal Artillery: POW
  3. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    Elsewhere, another snippet of information has been uncovered by AB64

    His GSM for Palestine in 1948 was awarded while serving with 66 Airborne Anti-Tank Regiment R.A.

    At this stage he held the rank of P/L/Bdr.

    Furthermore, the page indicates that at some stage he was entitled to three clasps. I have only Palestine and Malaya. He was in the Canal Zone prior to the Suez Crisis, but that clasp was only (finally) awarded in October 2003, so I don't imagine it would be recorded here.

    He was born in Sept 1916, which would make him 23 at the outbreak of the War and 28-29 at liberation in 1945.

    I'm struggling to think where he could have acquired another between 1945 and Palestine--unless he has some pre-war service.


    Edit: I see there are two clasps for Palestine available: 'Palestine' for service between 19 April 1936 and 3 September 1939, during the Arab Revolt and 'Palestine 1945-48' for service between 27 September 1945 and 30 June 1948.

    Edit: 2 - on closer inspection that document states that he didn't already have a GSM when the Palestine issue was authorised, so we're looking for service that would grant a clasp after '48, not including Malaya which we have accounted for.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2020
  4. AB64

    AB64 Senior Member

    Based on his number I'd say he enlisted about February 1940
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  5. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    That's an Avro Anson .
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  6. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    That doesn't really help us with a date then--in production for quite a while after the war.
  7. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Via Ancestry:

    Possible marriage, parents:
    Name: James C Doggett
    Gender: Male
    Marriage Date: 23 Jun 1906
    Marriage Place: Manhattan, New York, USA
    Spouse: Helen Vine
    Certificate Number: 15262

    Name: Reginald J Doggett
    Registration Date: Jul 1916 [Aug 1916] [Sep 1916]
    Registration Quarter: Jul-Aug-Sep
    Registration district: Chichester
    Inferred County: Sussex
    Mother's Maiden Name: Vine
    Volume Number: 2b
    Page Number: 575

    1939 England and Wales Register
    Name: Reginald J Doggett
    Gender: Male
    Marital status: Single
    Birth Date: 30 Sep 1916
    Residence Year: 1939
    Address: Delcote
    Residence Place: Hailsham, Sussex, England
    Occupation: Glass Mer Asst (Heavy Worker)
    Schedule Number: 187
    Sub Schedule Number: 3
    Enumeration District: EKOK
    Registration district: 72/2
    Inferred Father: James C Doggett
    Inferred Mother: Ellen Doggett
    Screenshot 2020-01-12 at 09.59.29.png

    probably Mother's Death:
    Name: Ellen Doggett
    Death Age: 75
    Birth Date: abt 1880
    Registration Date: Oct 1955 [Nov 1955] [Dec 1955]
    Registration Quarter: Oct-Nov-Dec
    Registration district: Hailsham
    Inferred County: Sussex
    Volume: 5h
    Page: 276

    Father's Will:
    England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations)
    Name: James Charles Doggett
    Death Date: 9 Jan 1966
    Death Place: Sussex, England
    Probate Date: 14 Apr 1966
    Probate Registry: Lewes
    Screenshot 2020-01-12 at 10.14.19.png

    Death of
    possible sister/relative of his father, mentioned in Will
    Name: Louise Frances Doggett
    Death Age: 99
    Birth Date: 9 Jan 1885
    Registration Date: Oct 1984
    Registration district: Shepway
    Inferred County: Kent
    Volume: 16
    Page: 1526

    1901 Census, showing Reg's father James C and Louisa as siblings, living with their grandmother, mother, half-brother and step-father:
    • Name: Thomas H Wethnawtt [Thomas Henry Westmacott] Age: 40 Estimated birth year: abt 1861 Relation to Head: Head Spouse: Margaret Wethnawtt [Margaret Westmacott] Birth Place: Abingdon Civil Parish: Walthamstow
    • Name: Margaret Wethnawtt [Margaret Westmacott] [Margaret Chettle] Age: 50 Estimated birth year: abt 1851 Relation to Head: Wife Spouse: Thomas H Wethnawtt Mother: Margaret Chettle Birth Place: Shaud, Stelenigts Civil Parish: Walthamstow
    • Name: James C Doggett Age: 21 Estimated birth year: abt 1880 Relation to Head: Stepson Mother: Margaret Wethnawtt Birth Place: Islington Civil Parish: Walthamstow
    • Name: Louisa Doggett Age: 16 Estimated birth year: abt 1885 Relation to Head: Stepdaughter Mother: Margaret Wethnawtt Birth Place: Stoke Newington Civil Parish: Walthamstow
    • Name: Albert E Weshnawtt [Albert E Westmacott] Age: 13 Estimated birth year: abt 1888 Relation to Head: Son Father: Thomas H Wethnawtt Mother: Margaret Wethnawtt Birth Place: St Pancras Civil Parish: Walthamstow (appears to have served with RN 1915-1919; emigrated via Toronto, Canada to NY, USA; married 1922, Manhattan, NY; naturalised citizen 1928; d. 1962)
    • Name: Margaret Chettle Age: 83 Estimated birth year: abt 1818 Relation to Head: Mother-in-law Birth Place: Stand Civil Parish: Walthamstow

    UK, Electoral Registers, 2003-2010
    Mr Reginald J Doggett
    Residence Date: 2003-2005
    Address: Delcote, Dittons Road, BN26 6HU
    Residence Place: Polegate, East Sussex, England
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2020
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  8. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    Thanks dbf.

    So although it was unlikely in the first-place, we can fairly confidently rule-out pre-war service as he was working in industry in 1939.

    The person who sold this collection to me told me that it came to him via an auction (bought unseen in a box of very varied content) of goods from a house clearance, which I'm sorry to say usually results in the wake of a death (though sometimes when the elderly are taken into care), but I can't turn up any confirmation of his death.

    You have him alive until, at least, 2005, and I have his home being sold 1/12/10 here:

    Sold House Prices in Polegate, Dittons Road, Bn26 6hu, | Nethouseprices.com

    I'm erring towards thinking that he never married and had no descendants, but I'm going to keep looking.

    I've never applied for the service records of anybody outside my family, so I need to check the criteria, because this is tempting.
  9. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Looking into this Ancestry database - All England and Wales, Death Index, 1989-2018 results for Doggett and knowing he was presumably alive in 2005 (Electoral Register) and his house possibly sold under probate (not certain) one would assume he would appear in this database, but he doesnt, neither does he appear in any of the marriage databases, so the assumption at the moment is that he lived and died on his own.
    His service records would be a good way to go to try and resolve this for you, as on my fathers records they do show his leave for his wedding and in fact the name of the bride to be - which coincidentally is the same name as my mother

    A note on the database - it does say:
    About England and Wales, Death Index, 1989-2018
    This collection is a compiled index that covers approximately 55% of the total deaths that occurred in this time period.
    This index provides death details for people in England and Wales, specifically their name, gender, date of birth or age at death, date of death, and residence place at death. However, they do not include the General Register Office (GRO) reference information.
    September 2019: Added new records and expanded collection to include 2018.

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  10. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Need proof of death though TD. Applications to MOD for personnel who haven't died while still in service require copy death certificate.
    Request records of deceased service personnel
    Even then, if death occurred less than 25 yrs ago, information provided by MOD will be limited, given that NOK consent at this point isn't likely to be forthcoming.

    I've had a look at Findagrave, couldn't find anything there either.
    Anyone tried FMP?
  11. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    Precisely the problem.
  12. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    I understand all that and is why I added the note saying basically that only approx 55% had been added therefore he could easily be in the not yet added 45% (if my maths are correct), maybe tyhere is another way of finding out if he is in the missing (not added yet) 45%

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  13. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    There are a few remaining lines of enquiry:

    1) Some of the vehicles in the post-Malaya shots have clear markings. I can verify that he stayed with 26 Fd Regt until his transfer to the reserves in 1952.

    2) I have his home address and the property is still occupied. It's conceivable that the current owners might know more. I could write to them, but if the property has been sold more than once it's a slim chance.

    3) These are the rest of the loose photographs, although to my eyes the one of Reginald shooting has fallen from an album page. As has happened before, we might get relatives come in here on search engines when doing their family genealogy, so it's worth my uploading them

    Here is that image that I suspect has fallen out. Syria page is missing an image (I presume Syria from the ruins etc.)


    This next one looks to me to be another shot of him as a POW. The account of the capture above has lots to say on their going out to do farm-work, which aligns with the backdrop here. Presumably this was taken in the colder portion of the year.


    This feels to me as if it was taken in the back garden of 'Delcote', the family home. The garden has changed somewhat in contents, but the higglety-pigglety nature remains. There's a family resemblance between this man and Reginald and I feel fairly confident in saying it's his father, James. Compare this with the first POW picture and you'll see what I mean:


    This one again looks like the rear of Delcote before the rear-extension. I'd say it's Reginald's mother and aunt (left and right):


    This feels as if it's earlier (dress, but also the type of photo), and the suspected-aunt from above features on the left (only a bit younger). Could the youth at the rear be Reginald and the two in the centre his grandparents?


    Let me know what you think of my guesswork.
  14. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    I got that--and I appreciate your detective work, mate.
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  15. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Is it worth checking with Intl Red Cross to see what records they may have for him as a POW - it might contain some family reference or more personal details - just a thought, and I do realise how difficult how difficult they can be to obtain

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  16. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

  17. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Is there a significance to the fact that of the two notices at #1 transferring him to the Reserves, one is dated 5 Sep 52 and the other 28 Aug 58? Did he re-enlist?
    #23 I think this form has been incorrectly filled out. Whilst it has been used to show entitlement to the GSM and Palestine clasp the 3, 4 & 5 in the 'State clasps entitled to' has been used for some other purpose and the box at the top of the column has not been completed. The Form is dated Jun 1948.

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  18. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    Good questions.

    1) I had thought they were different categories with different criteria for recall.
    1952 he moves to 'Section B Royal Army Reserve'.
    1958 he moved to Army Reserve Class 1.

    I think his service has spanned two different systems, because the Act quoted for the 1958 move was 1954.

    As to the Palestine form, I've been puzzling over it to. I think elements have been added to it--like those numbers for instance--after the Jun 1948 signature date. I also noticed the PTO note about the regiment in the 'Remarks section (far-right).

    AB64 is it easy to find the next page to this document? If so, it would be great if you could post it.
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  19. ozzy16

    ozzy16 Well-Known Member

    Some info regarding his POW days.

    Camp XV111-A (camp 18A)
    There were over 300 work camps attached to camp18A in August 1944. Reg is shown to have worked in 1731L and 266L

    Camp 1731L was located in Spitz, near Deutsch Gortiz
    Type of work farm work.
    Number of men 10.

    Camp 266L was located in Schloss, Brunsee, near Eichfeld.
    Type of work farm work.
    Number 0f men 16.

    The "L" prefix stands for Landwirtschaft, which denotes, a camp where the work was agricultural in nature eg, farm work, forestry.

  20. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    AB64 is it easy to find the next page to this document? If so, it would be great if you could post it.[/QUOTE]

    The following pages are all similar in that they continuously refer to 'PTO' I have added it for you to see, but the pages following this are all PTO


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