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national service

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Susan Report 24 Feb 2021 07:54

hi, hope someone can help me. Im trying to find out where my uncle William Spinks did his army national service. We want to add the info to an eulogy. It would have been in the early 50s and within cycling distance of Brockley SE4 in London. Thsnk you in anticipation.
Best regards
Susie x


KathleenBell Report 24 Feb 2021 11:23

WW2 and later service records are still with the MOD and are not online. These can be ordered but take several months to arrive so not much use for you for a eulogy. They cost £30.

If you have an army recruitment centre near you which is open (might not be at this moment in time) then they could possibly help.

Kath. x


ArgyllGran Report 24 Feb 2021 11:39

Unless you have reason to believe his National Service was in London, it could have been anywhere:

Where did National Servicemen serve?
After training, National Servicemen were often posted to one of Britain's many garrisons around the world. They could end up in places as diverse as the deserts of Egypt and Libya or the jungles of Malaya and Borneo.


KathleenBell Report 24 Feb 2021 11:46

You are right ArgyllGran. My brother did his National Service in the 1950's and was sent to Cyprus.

Kath. x


greyghost Report 24 Feb 2021 12:21

Don't know how up to date this site is - there is a list of contacts on one of the pages - maybe someone will be able to help?


ErikaH Report 24 Feb 2021 12:33

If he did National Service, he was conscripted into one of the Armed Forces, and could have been deployed anywhere in the world where the UK had a military presence. He certainly wouldn't have lived at home..................unless the location you mention wasn't 'home', but has some other significance

My partner's cousin served in KENYA

National Service as peacetime conscription was formulated by the National Service Act 1948. From 1 January 1949, healthy males 17 to 21 years old were required to serve in the armed forces for 18 months, and remain on the reserve list for four years.

Note the age criteria


ArgyllGran Report 24 Feb 2021 14:21

Interestingly, the National Army Museum site gives a different age-group and start date:

After the Second World War (1939-45), the young men of Britain were called upon to meet new challenges in a rapidly changing world. National Service, a standardised form of peacetime conscription, was introduced in 1947 for all able-bodied men between the ages of 18 and 30.

Gwyn in Kent

Gwyn in Kent Report 24 Feb 2021 15:18


Do you know for a fact that he was in the Army?

If you think he stayed local to the London area maybe he was employed in an occupation that counted as alternative work.