Tuesday, 10 September 2019

Unique research facility launched by the RWF Museum


The Royal Welch Fusiliers Museum at Caernarfon Castle has launched a unique research facility in honour of those who lost their lives in the First World War. The new research database is hosted on the Museum’s website and is split between those who made the ultimate sacrifice (the Faces of the Fallen) and those who served and survived the war (“All that is left of them”).

The “Faces of the Fallen” Project was initiated in 2014, at the start of the Centenary of the First World War, as a means of honouring those Royal Welchmen who made the ultimate sacrifice during this brutal conflict. Over 11,000 Royal Welch Fusiliers, serving in 40 Battalions (each of 1000 men), were killed in action, died of wounds/disease or in accidents in the service of their country. This number is significantly higher than any other Welsh regiment.  The men came, not just from Wales but from across the United Kingdom and the dominions. With the financial support of the Welsh Government’s Cymru’n Cofio Wales Remembers 1914 - 1918 programme, this searchable database has been designed by the Royal Welch Fusiliers Museum for their website, as a free research resource for all to use. It is a unique and fitting legacy of the First World War Centenary events in Wales. “We believe we are bringing these Royal Welchmen back to the spiritual home of the Royal Welch Fusiliers”.

At the time of the database’s launch, over 2,530 photographs of fallen Royal Welchman have been identified. The Trustees of the Museum are hugely indebted to a small group of dedicated volunteers who have made this fitting tribute possible. Shirley Williams, the Museum’s Education Officer, was the driving force behind the initial idea it was to start the project. Dr John Krijnen, a dedicated volunteer built the database and has spent hundreds of hours researching to confirm casualty details. Many more families, history and heritage groups, county archives and WW1 centenary projects have contributed images to the project.

The “All that is left of them” database has been funded by the Federation of Museum and Art Galleries Wales and is a work in progress. The aim is to provide photos and details of as many of the 100,000 men who served in the Regiment during the First World War as possible.

Both databases will continue to grow as more photos come to light. If you have photographs of family members or from other sources, that are not already shown in the database and would like to donate the images, then please send them, with as much information as possible, to image@rwfmuseum.wales


Amgueddfa yng Nghaernarfon yn anrhydeddu aberth y Cymry Brenhinol yn y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf.

Mae Amgueddfa'r Ffiwsilwyr Brenhinol Cymreig yng Nghastell Caernarfon wedi lansio cyfleuster ymchwil unigryw i anrhydeddu'r rhai a gollodd eu bywydau yn y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf. Mae'r bas data ymchwil newydd yma yn cael ei gynnal ar wefan yr Amgueddfa ac mae wedi'i rhannu rhwng y rhai a wnaeth yr aberth eithaf (Wynebau’r Milwyr a Gollwyd) a'r rhai a wasanaethodd ac a oroesodd y rhyfel (“Y Cyfan sydd ar ôl”).

Fe gychwynnodd y Prosiect “Wynebau’r Milwyr a Gollwyd” yn 2014, ar ddechrau Canmlwyddiant y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf, fel ffordd o anrhydeddu'r Cymry Brenhinol hynny a wnaeth yr aberth eithaf yn ystod y gwrthdaro creulon hwn. Lladdwyd dros 11,000 o Ffiwsilwyr Brenhinol Cymreig, a wasanaethodd mewn 40 bataliwn (pob un gyda 1000 o ddynion) a gafodd eu lladd mewn brwydr, bu farw o’u clwyfau/afiechydon neu mewn damweiniau yng ngwasanaeth eu gwlad. Mae'r nifer hwn yn uwch nag unrhyw gatrawd Gymreig arall. Nid yn unig o Gymru daeth y dynion, ond o bob rhan o'r Deyrnas Unedig a'r dominiynau. Gyda chefnogaeth ariannol rhaglen Cymru'n Cofio Wales Remembers 1914 - 1918 Llywodraeth Cymru, dyluniwyd y bas data chwiliadwy hwn gan Amgueddfa'r Ffiwsilwyr Brenhinol Cymreig ar gyfer eu gwefan, fel adnodd ymchwil rhad ac am ddim i bawb ei ddefnyddio. Mae'n etifeddiaeth unigryw ac addas o ddigwyddiadau Canmlwyddiant y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf yng Nghymru. “Rydym yn credu ein bod yn dod â'r Cymry Brenhinol hyn yn ôl i gartref ysbrydol y Ffiwsilwyr Brenhinol Cymreig”.

Ar adeg lansio'r bas data, mae dros 2,530 o ffotograffau o'r Cymry Brenhinol wedi ei canfod. Mae Ymddiriedolwyr yr Amgueddfa yn ddyledus iawn i grŵp bach o wirfoddolwyr ymroddedig sydd wedi gwneud y deyrnged addas hon yn bosibl. Shirley Williams, Swyddog Addysg yr Amgueddfa, oedd yr ysgogiad y tu ôl i'r syniad cychwynnol i ddechrau'r prosiect. Adeiladodd Dr John Krijnen, gwirfoddolwr ymroddedig y bas data ac mae wedi treulio cannoedd o oriau yn ymchwilio i gadarnhau manylion yr anafedig. Mae llawer mwy o deuluoedd, grwpiau hanes a threftadaeth, archifau sirol a phrosiectau canmlwyddiant y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf wedi cyfrannu lluniau i'r prosiect.

Bydd y ddwy bas data yn parhau i dyfu wrth i fwy o luniau ddod i'r amlwg. Os oes gennych ffotograffau o aelodau'r teulu neu o ffynonellau eraill, nad ydynt yn cael eu dangos yn y bas data eisoes ac yr hoffech roi'r lluniau i ni, yna anfonwch nhw, gyda chymaint o wybodaeth â phosibl, i

Monday, 2 September 2019


When the 2nd Battalion returned from Ireland a recruiting march was planned from Holyhead to Wrexham.  Some of the journey was covered by train and the route included Bangor, Caernarfon, Harlech, Dolgellau, Llanrwst, Abergele, St Asaph, Denbigh, Corwen, Llangollen and Wrexham.  Officers and men were lavishly entertained along their route.  Only a few recruits came forward and the Goat was accidentally killed.

Sunday, 12 August 2018

Searching for some RWF family members re 75th Anniversary of liberation of Reusel, Holland

Can you help?

Looking for family members of
LSgt. Herbert Hughes (4200194) 6th. Bat. Royal Welch Fusiliers.(Wrexham, Denbighshire, Wales)
KIA 25th. September 1944 in Reusel.

Also looking for family members of

Fus. William Owen Traynor (4209383) 6th. Bat. Royal Welch Fusiliers ( Northwich, Cheshire, England) KIA 25th. September 1944 in Reusel.

This in connection with: 75th. Anniversary of the liberation of Reusel (Holland).

Contact Shirley@rwfmuseum.wales

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Lt John Shingler MC


Lieutenant J.S.M Shingler MC Died of Wounds

Lt John Shingler was commanding A Company of the 4th Battalion, The Royal Welsh Fusiliers  when he was mortally wounded by shell fire. 4 RWF were a pioneer battalion. Pioneer Battalions were used to conduct light engineering tasks in and to the rear of the front line. They were often also used in Tunnelling Operations. 4 RWF was a volunteer Territorial Force battalion recruited in Denbighshire, principally from the miners of the Wrexham Coal Fields. This made them suitable for pioneer duties and they were the first of the RWF Territorial Force Battalions to be deployed overseas on operations in France. The officers seen in the attached photograph are believed to include Shingler sitting on the left of the group. Notice on this group of officer’s jacket lapels they wear the crossed rifle and pickaxe badges which denote that these officers are from a pioneer battalion. They also have a coloured patch on their arms. 4 RWF served as the Pioneer battalion for the 47th (2nd London) Division. Units in this division were identified by the colour of the patch, either Yellow, Green or Red, dependent on the Brigade within the Division and then the shape of a playing card symbol (diamonds etc) to denote the Battalion within the Brigade. Unfortunately the colour of the 4 RWF patch was not recored. Notice also the nick names for the officers in the photo which were written on the rear of the photo.  Lt John Shingler’s service record is shown below. The final photograph shows John's temporary Grave in France.

Shingler J.S.M.    Lt     MC
John Stanley Marsh Shingler, was born at Collins Street, Melbourne, Australia, the son of Sarah Elizabeth and the late John Hilton Shingler of Scotland Street, Ellesmere. Shrops, was educated at Ellesmere College, and served with the College Contingent Junior Division, OTC. Was commissioned 2/Lt (11/11/14) to 4 RWF joining the battalion in France. Then converted to a  Pioneer Battalion in Sept 1915 in the 47th London Div, he was promoted Temp Lt (2/3/16) and Lt (1/6/16).Was gazetted (20/7/16) A/Capt and while working on the trenching and tramway along the Messines-Wytschaete Ridge, he was awarded the MC 6 Jul 1917 for an action on the 11/12th Jun at Bluff Tunnels. He commanded D Coy, but lost his company in the battalion re-organization 27 Jan 1918 when his coy was split into three platoons and transferred, one to each of the other Coys in the         battalion. Later he commanded A Coy (28/6/18) with the rank of A/Capt, was wounded in mopping up operations at St. Pierre Vasst Wood 2 Sept, and died of wounds 4 Sept 1918 age 25. Buried Dernancourt Communal Cemy Extension, France.

MC Citation :- For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty at a critical moment when hostile shell fire was constantly concentrated upon his platoon, who were working in a trench. He steadied and collected his men, going up and down the trench for the purpose, and showing utter disregard of his own safety while doing so. He led them then from the shelled area, afterwards taking them back to their work and completing it with success before day-light. Throughout the operation he has displayed coolness and untiring energy when employed on similar work.

MC (LG 25/8/17).

Brigadier General Arthur Lowry-Cole CB, DSO

Brigadier General Arthur Lowry-Cole CB, DSO died of wounds.
On this day Brigadier General Lowry-Cole died of wounds commanding the 25th Infantry Brigade, 8th Infantry Division, at the Battle of Aubers Ridge, France. He is buried at Le Trou Aid Post Cemetery, Fleurbaix Pas de Calais France Plot - E. 22. Arthur Lowry-Cole was the most senior Royal Welch Fusilier officer to die as a result of combat in the First World War.
His full service history can be seen below:
Cole, Arthur Willoughby George Lowry Major and Brevet Lieutenant Colonel, was born 29 November 1860, eldest son of Colonel A L Cole.
He became a Second Lieutenant, 23rd Foot, 11 August 1880, and Lieutenant, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 1 July 1881. He served with the Burmese Expedition, 1885-87 (Despatches [London Gazette, 2 September 1887] Medal with clasp). He became Captain 22 January 1890, and was Adjutant, Royal Welsh Fusiliers, 23 April 1894 to 30 January 1898.
Captain Cole served in West Africa, 1897-98 (Borgu Medal with clasp). From 31 January 1898 to 15 February 1901, he was employed with the West African Frontier Force; was promoted Major 11 January 1899. He served in West Africa (Northern Nigeria), 1900 (severely wounded); Munshi Expedition (in command), and Kaduna Expedition (Despatches [London Gazette, 16 April, 1901]; Brevet Lieutenant Colonel 29 November 1902; clasp). Again in West Africa (Northern Nigeria), 1900, with the Expedition against Chief of Tawari; in command (Despatches [London Gazette, 18 April, 1902]; Medal with clasp).
He served in the South African War, 1901-2; commanded Depot Battalion, Green Point; in command of 17th Mounted Infantry Mixed Column; afterwards Commandant, Vryburg Sub-District (Despatches [London Gazette, 29 July 1902]; Queen's Medal with five clasps). He was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 31 October 1902]: "Arthur Willoughby George Lowry Cole, Major and Brevet Lieutenant Colonel, The Royal Welsh Fusiliers. In recognition of services during the operations in South Africa".
From 12 July to 6 November 1903, he held a temporary appointment as AAG in India, and was promoted Lieutenant Colonel 24 September 1904. He was again employed with the West African Frontier Force from 24 September 1904, to 24 September 1907; was given the Brevet of Colonel 27 October 1905; was in command of the Sokoto Expedition in 1906, for which he was mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette, 2 July 1907], and was created a CB, 1907 (Medal and clasp). He was made Colonel 25 September 1907, and on 29 October 1907, became AAG, GSO1, Peshawar Division, India. In 1912 he was appointed to the charge of Administration, Northern Command. He served in the European War, and died of wounds received in action in May 1915. Brigadier General A W G L Cole married, in 1908, Marion Gertrude, widow of Lieutenant Colonel C H Thorold. (Cited from: http://www.militarian.com/…/colonel-arthur-willoughby-geor…/)
The Rifle Brigade History of WW1 says the following of his wounding:- "The remaining troops of the 25th Brigade were herded together in the front line and assembly sap in an advanced state of disorganisation; and were so found by the Brigadier when he arrived at 6.20am - forty minutes after the attack began. In these circumstances he ordered up his Brigade reserve (two companies of the 2nd Lincolnshire Regiment) and dispatched them in support of the 13th London Regiment with orders to bomb towards the 2nd Rifle Brigade (the only battalion to make any inroads) and join up with them. Almost immediately afterwards a further stroke of misfortune befell the attackers. In some mysterious manner, which has never been explained, an order to retire was circulated among the troops out in front (8th Division's account of the operation). It does not seem to have reached the 2nd RB, nor is there any record of it in their diaries, but from all directions men began retiring towards the original line. With conspicuous gallantry Brigadier General Lowry Cole sprang up on the parapet and succeeded in restoring order. The action cost him his life, for he was mortally wounded. This fatality put Colonel Stephens of the 2nd Rifle Brigade in command of the 25th Brigade. But Colonel Stephens was forward in the trenches captured by the 2nd Rifle Brigade, and it was some hours before he could be informed, and some hours later before he could leave his battalion in order to take over. (Cited from: http://www.militarian.com/…/colonel-arthur-willoughby-geor…/)

Monday, 4 September 2017

1st September 2006 ON THIS DAY IN RWFHISTORY - Kyffin Williams

Sir Kyffin Williams OBE RA died, 1st September 2006

He was Wales’s greatest artist of the twentieth century. He came from Anglesey and served with the 6th Battalion before and during the early part of the Second World War before being medically discharged. Three of his paintings of Royal Welchmen are in the Regimental Museum.

Museum panels art work being created

You might be interested in seeing how the art work was done for the panels in the connecting corridor between the two towers of the Museum.