Ranks: Abbreviations, Explanations & Order (several merged threads)

Discussion in 'Service Records' started by pjs, Sep 18, 2006.

  1. mapshooter

    mapshooter Senior Member

    It's possible Driver as the rank didn't appear until RASC became RCT. Some of the others may also have been a post-WW2 introduction, the one that definitely was not is Gunner.

    In WW2 there were also Warrant Officer Class 3 (WO3), in roles like Troop Sergeant Major in artillery.
  2. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Reminds me of a tale related by an airman in an aircrew role.He was a Corporal and after June 1940,the minimum rank was estsblished at Sergeant so the airman qualified for the Sergeant's Mess.

    The first time he entered the Sergeant Mess,he sat down in a chair and thought that others were observing him.After a while he was tapped on the shoulder by a person who he recognised as the SWO man (Station Warrant Officer...prime responsibility disciplinary matters) "You are sitting in my seat laddie" said the SWO man and the new Sergeant had to beat a retreat quickly, much to his embarassment.

    This particular SWO man, to all accounts was a character.When the station was attacked by the Luftwaffe on a daylight raid,a large bomb dropped on the square and blew off the RAF Ensign,the SWO man retrieved the Ensign,shinned up the flagpole,refitted it and the station continued to indicate its operational status.
  3. Rich Payne

    Rich Payne Rivet Counter Patron 1940 Obsessive

    I've seen 'Driver' shown on Royal Corps of Signals headstones which implies that it was a 'rank' there as well...and in the 1940 Divisional HQ RE establishment, there is reference to Drivers, Sappers and Pioneers, for instance - "9 X sapper - 16 X driver - Pioneer as medical officers orderly - 3 X pioneer as motorcyclist orderly - Pioneer as cook " - This implies that not all RE of the lowest rank were full 'Sappers' - as far as I can understand, pioneers did not have the same level of field engineering training.

    Complicated doesn't quite describe it.
    dbf likes this.
  4. Aixman

    Aixman War Establishment addict Patron

    Searching for some other things I just came across Army Counsil Instruction No. 1605 of 1942, referring to R.E.M.E. formation.
    In appendix C, a five columns' table shows the ranks in column 1 and the appointments for R.E.M.E., R.E., R.A.S.C. and R.A.O.C. in columns 2 to 5.
    I thought it might bring some clarification to several questions evolved in this thread.


    Rich Payne and dbf like this.
  5. hendrix17

    hendrix17 Active Member

    This is what I've found my grandad is Dvr Furnie in the r.a.s.c 105 coy b e f x war diary. If anyone wants to tell me anything more about these then feel free. (I've only selected pages with names) image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg
  6. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Illustrated London News 06 January 1940
    Illustrated London News 06 January 1940-2.jpg

    Attached Files:

    Aixman likes this.
  7. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    The Sphere 09 March 1940
    The Sphere 09 March 1940, 1.jpg

    Attached Files:

    Aixman likes this.
  8. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Interesting data especially the pay rates of those of Air Rank.

    There is an error apparent in the Royal Air Force 1940 commissioned ranks.

    No 10, "Flying Officer or Observer" would be the rank of Flying Officer only.Observers would be non commissioned as there was no provision for Observers to be commissioned until 4 April 1940. Observers would have the minimum rank of Corporal and a maximum rank of Sergeant, being the days before the minimum rank for aircrew was Sergeant from June 1940.
  9. Mike Selcon

    Mike Selcon Active Member

    Acting Ranks in WW2

    Hi All

    Im not sure if I'm posting this in the correct forum but can anyone help me?
    I am working through a service record for a man who joined up for the 'duration of the emergency'. He was promoted several times, his last promotion in March 1946 being to Paid Acting WO1. Does the Paid Acting prefix indicate that as a conscript who signed up only or the duration of the emergency that he would only hold the rank until the emergency was declared to be over?

    Any guidance would be greatly appreciated!

  10. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    Acting ranks were sometimes used when the soldier would be filling a role that would be limited, for example when an NCO was detached on special duties but would be returning later but during his absence there was a 'hole' to be filled. Given that the majority of men were effectively hostilities only it would be impossible if all of them were limited to acting ranks
  11. Rich Payne

    Rich Payne Rivet Counter Patron 1940 Obsessive

    The usual sequence in the case of Duration of Emergency conscripts seems to have been "A/U", "P/A" and finally "W/"...Acting Unpaid, Paid Acting and finally War Substantive. In some ways it was often a way of making sure that the serviceman was suitable for the responsibility of a given rank (and prepared to accept it) before going through the whole procedure. War Substantive ranks were still being granted during 1946.
    Tricky Dicky likes this.
  12. Mike Selcon

    Mike Selcon Active Member

    Thanks for this, once again the information helps to unravel the story a bit furthewr!

    best regards

  13. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    I've come across examples of men promoted to acting then reverting to their previous rank only to be promoted to substantive shortly after. I've tended to assume that they were promoted to fill a temporary 'hole' - proved that they could do it and them promoted to fill the next permanent position. In WW1 men were often promoted to acting sergeant before being sent off to officer cadet battalions. I don't know if the same applied in WW2
  14. del1701

    del1701 Junior Member

    Good evening all, I am trying to ascertain the specific trade / occupation of a serviceman pre war. I have his service record which lists his occupation as "Clerk", however I am trying to establish what type of Clerk he was. The record lists his industry group as "ZH" and occupational classification as "172-02".
    Can anyone help me decode ZH 172-02?
    Many thanks in advance.
  15. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    See this thread: Industry groups.
    The codes in this post may refer to Census Industry codes -see thread.

    Last edited: Jan 13, 2020
  16. tillyk

    tillyk Member

    I have the sentence stamped on a service record that looks like it reads
    "Passed TES on & found competent to drive Mech Prop Vehs" Does anyone know what TES stands for. Most of the acronyms I found seemed to refer to modern day surveillance equipment which didn't seem to make a lot of sense. Thanks
  17. Archaepon

    Archaepon Member

    Your Dad's progress through the FSS seems to be similar to my Dad's. The sometimes daily promotion then demotion. Also the unpaid aspect of the ranks. Dad was in 251 FSS and 278FSS as far as his records tell me. He was in the BAOR as well, he was a FRench speaker and had other languages under his belt.

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