Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Captain Ralph Manwaring West, 3rd Mounted Brigade

Ralph Mainwaring West was the son of Charles Herbert and Ada Elizabeth West.  He appears on the 1901 census of England and Wales as a seven year old living at 2 York Villas, Brighton.  The Household comprised Charles H West (aged 39 and noted as “assessor and Collector Hall Tax”), his wife Ada West (aged 36) and their three children: Ralph, Alan Herbert Manwaring West (aged three) and Brenda Manwaring West (aged eight months).  All three children and Ada West had been born in Brighton; Charles was born in Henfield. 

Also registered on the census return were two servants: Kate Divall (aged 24, from Ringmer, working as a domestic servant) and Ella M Godding (aged 15, from Brighton, working as a domestic nurse).
Chailey Parish Magazine notes as early as October 1914 that Ralph West is serving his King and Country and in October 1915 adds that he is a lieutenant with the Sussex Yeomanry.  By April 1916 his rank is noted as captain and in November 1916 he is recorded as serving with the 3rd Mounted Brigade. 

On 9th August 1917 the Supplement to The London Gazette (page 8115) noted under “territorial Force.  Yeomanry” that: 2nd Lt (temp Lt) R M West to be Lt with precedence as from 1st June 1916, and remain seconded.  10th August 1917. On March 1st 1918 on page 2622 of the Supplement to The London Gazette, again under “Territorial Force.  Yeomanry” it read: Lt R M West to be Capt and to remain seconded.  27th December 1917. Finally on 5th May 1919 (page 5642), The London Gazette reported that “Capt R M West is restored to the establishment.  5th Apr 1919”. 

I was unable to locate Ralph West’s service record at The National Archives in London.  His brother Alan was killed in a bomb accident in Mesopotamia in January 1918.

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