14 Forward Trailer Section, RAOC

Discussion in 'REME/RAOC' started by john duvall, Jun 3, 2020.

  1. john duvall

    john duvall Member

    My dad, John Duvall, 7645657, joined in Leicester in Oct 1940. After training he was sent to Egypt in Feb 1941 and drove trucks in Egypt / Syria until Mar 1942.
    He was then sent to India / Burma until Jan 1945. He then came home until Nov 1945 when he went to Belgium until he was demobbed in May 1946.

    If anyone has any info, I’d love to hear it.
    1683E47D-FE30-49AE-BB8E-C2FE544FD2A3.jpeg AFF4C36C-E74F-47AE-97D1-E311E626AA40.jpeg

  2. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

  3. john duvall

    john duvall Member

    Thanks for the reply. I looked at the info I could get from the mod. I have almost all of it and I will think about whether the rest is worth the £30 admin fee.
    Best wishes, John
  4. Historic Steve

    Historic Steve Researching 21 Army Group/BAOR post VE day

    Have a location entry for 14 Forward Trailer Section RAOC on 22 Sep 45:
    Caserne Technique, Vilvoorde north of Brussels, Belgium under command HQ 20th Line of Communication Sub Area
    Best of luck with your research
  5. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member


    Do you know which unit he was with in the Middle East? I thought 14 FTS was part of 14 AOD RAOC and therefore home-based before moving into NW Europe after D-day.


  6. gmyles

    gmyles Senior Member

    Hi John

    I had my father's photos, his pay book, release docs, currency from Algeria, Egypt and Italy, his Africa and Italy campaign medals, badges of 23rd Armoured Brigade and some family stories of his adventures in Egypt. So I thought I had almost all of his wartime history too.

    Then I posted a question here and the forum advised me to apply for his service record.

    Only after receiving his service record, did I find out he:

    1. Sailed to France in Jan 40 with a Dundee based RAOC Army Field Workshop, on the SS Contractor and returned on the SS Killarney on 29 May. Two of his unit were killed during their evacuation.

    2. Defended RAF Syerston, in Lincolnshire in preparation for a German invasion.

    3. Was on fire watch keeping duties in Liverpool during the Blitz.Two of his unit were killed during air raids.

    4. Went to North Africa on Convoy WS-12 with 1st Armoured Division and was very nearly taken prisoner during the Gazala gallop.

    5. Left the RAOC and joined the REME in October 1942.

    6. Missed El Alamein due to an illness.

    7. Joined a Heavy Anti Aircraft Regiment after coming out of Hospital.

    8. Only joined 23rd Armoured Brigade 10 months before the end of the war whilst training in Palestine, so never went to Italy.

    9. Went to Greece in November 1944 just two weeks before the start of a civil war, during which, over a hundred of 23rd Armoured Brigade were killed or wounded.

    The research into my father's involvement in the Liberation of Greece in late 1944 turned into a book published in Greece a few years ago. I am currently researching for my second book covering the civil war in Athens.

    So getting my fathers service records was the best £30 I have ever spent.

    Hope his helps

    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
    timuk, Tom OBrien, Owen and 1 other person like this.

    JITTER PARTY Well-Known Member

    The vehicle in the second photo appears to have a 6/70 Division formation sign. Was he with them in NA only (I'm assuming that is where the picture was taken) or did he go to India with them? Do you know which unit he was with?
  8. john duvall

    john duvall Member

    Thanks for all the replies.
    Steve- he was in Egypt / Syria from Feb 1941 to mar 1942, then India / Burma mar 1942 to jan 1945. He came home for a bit, then went to Belgium (Brussels?) nov 1945 to May 1946.

    Tom - I assumed he was always 14 FTS, but I only got that from his Campaign Star certificate.

    Gus - so much info. I think I’ll apply to mod. Do you need to send a death certificate, or will an on-line photo of it be OK?

    Jitter Party - I assumed the photos we’re Egypt, as some had the pyramids and a memorial to a downed Italian flyer (El Adam 1942).

    Best wishes, John
  9. john duvall

    john duvall Member

    Any idea what the “8” and “65” mean, maybe 8th army?
    I assume the bit above the “65” shows the division.
  10. john duvall

    john duvall Member

    B4D3065C-8FB6-46C6-B1D1-172C2005D1DC.jpeg 2A68FAA4-E6CA-4B0E-ABD1-6EB2E2C767F7.jpeg F9EDEA84-D4D2-4030-867F-4A6494CDE6F6.jpeg 06C6C635-F78B-463F-A758-919485BEBFD9.jpeg 66F48934-FFC5-44CB-9FE9-35D7F3B4BDFC.jpeg 54E7A02E-C7DC-426D-88E9-F05F344E0BB5.jpeg 2BE7B22C-6765-4596-B1A7-61EA28058F59.jpeg EFAB13D8-7EE1-4FFF-B62F-CADE81F25A14.jpeg 5B17A816-6622-4E22-ACED-71647DB8083D.jpeg
    Some more of dad’s wartime photos
    The first two are Aleppo, Syria Aug/Sep 1941
    The next is a convoy in Palestine Oct 1941
    The next is Colarba camp, Bombay Apr 1942
    The next in Gaya, India 1942, with the char wallah
    Then at Namkom camp, nr Ranchi, India may1942
    Then on what looks like a small boat (maybe Ceylon or Burma)
    Next is a collection of sergeants in mess in Brussels, just after the war
    The last looks like Christmas in the mess in Brussels, with sergeants serving other ranks.
  11. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member


    the '8' was the bridging classification - so dependent on weight of vehicle and its load.

    The '65' is the unit serial and, as Jitter Party, the red star above the 65 is the divisional sign of 6/70 Division (it changed name in mid-1941).


    john duvall likes this.

    JITTER PARTY Well-Known Member

    Photo Six: Anybody have any idea what the 'FF in a circle on a triangular pennant' on the door of the lorry means?

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