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Thread: Forfeiture of seniority

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    Default Forfeiture of seniority

    My father, W.E.P. Webb DFM. There is a piece in the London Gazette 13/4/1947 relating to his forfeiture of seniority. " takes rank and precedence (with effect from 21/10/1947) as if his appointment as Flight Lieutenant (war substantive) bore date 3/6/1947. I am not sure what all this means and is there any way I can find further details, I assume forfeiture of seniority was a serious matter - did it involve a court martial and if so how can I find out about it. I was unable to ever talk to my father about this as my parents were divorced when I was 5 and he moved to New Zealand.
    Any help appreciated.

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    Correct me if I’m wrong: I believe many aircrew were dropped in rank after the war, if they remained in service. You will note that this was in effect, 6 months after announced date in the London Gazette. Many promotions were identified in the ORBs as “temporary”. Your father likely did not commit any transgression resulting in this demotion.

    Jim
    Last edited by JDCAVE; 6th March 2021 at 15:17.

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    Do you have his service record Bill ?
    There may or may not be a clue on that ?

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    Yes I have his service record but nothing in it. My mother always said he was 'cashiered' but she had a level of bias I think, she also exaggerated slightly and said he was a Group Captain (Flight Lt). But she was adamant he was court martialled (something about another woman in his barracks) which led to the divorce. My father also left the RAF shortly after this 'incident'. I would just like to get to the bottom of it and see if there is any record of these things.

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    In my experience, loss of seniority means that he was subject to a discipinary process at some point. Having said that, your father does not appear in the RAF CM Register that I can see. Perhaps an administrative issue?
    In fond memory of Corporal James Oakland AGC (RMP), killed in action in Afghanistan on 22 October 2009. Exemplo Ducemus.

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    Bill,

    I'm a little a loss with your opening post, and forgive me if I've misread it.

    If I read it correctly you state there is an entry in the London Gazette, dated 13 APRIL 1947, which refers to later entries, namely in JUNE and NOVEMBER 1947. I suspect there is a typo here somewhere, perhaps your first date should refer to April 1948?

    Brian

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    Quote Originally Posted by Lyffe View Post
    Bill,

    I'm a little a loss with your opening post, and forgive me if I've misread it.

    If I read it correctly you state there is an entry in the London Gazette, dated 13 APRIL 1947, which refers to later entries, namely in JUNE and NOVEMBER 1947. I suspect there is a typo here somewhere, perhaps your first date should refer to April 1948?

    Brian
    Quite right April 1948 on a re-check. Thanks Bill

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    Bill,

    Based upon your mother's recollections, despite her being less than accurate at times, it does seem like your father was slapped on the wrist for some transgression.

    And also, as Jim pointed out, so many men were reduced in rank after the war if they continued in the RAF, yet to note every one of them in the London Gazette would have been a monstrous task. (I'm assuming they weren't all listed, but I haven't done my homework.)

    Are there any references in the appropriate ORB? In his logbook (if he was a flyer, as presumably he was, and if the book survives)? In any books, if any, which cover either his period of the war or his unit(s) post-war? Are there any websites for his units, either during the war or after? (There might be a point-of-contact given - someone who might be willing to broadcast your appeal for info to a wider audience.) Might you find anyone (i.e., an old crewmate or squadronmate) who was there and who might shed some light on this? A second wife, or the offspring (if any) from New Zealand, who might have learned more? (Sometimes the younger generation embraces ancestry.com, etc., and many mysteries can be unraveled.) One of your own siblings, if any? Surviving letters from post-war?

    No doubt you can dismiss some of my questions outright, but maybe, with a little digging, you can yet uncover some more nuggets that will ultimately clarify matters. Good luck!

    Cheers,

    Matt

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    Default Re: Forfeiture of seniority

    So many men had a lot of difficulty following hostilities. Dad mentioned he went through a rough patch over a couple of years following the war. He was engaged to my mother and she "ended it" as he was moving around all over the place with Canadian National Railways, a concept she didn't understand from her background in England. Dad said he was pretty low. In the end, they did get married of course. But the transition to civilian live was very difficult for many men and Bill, your father may have suffered from this. I'm sure many of these men would now be diagnosed with PTSD, but at the time they were provided with very little support.

    Jim

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