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Thread: William Price

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    Default William Price

    I am looking for help in tracing the career of my great uncle William Price who joined J&J Denholm as a 2nd Engineer in 1922 and remained with the company until his retirement in the 1950s. I have recently given careful reading to some papers that have been the family for years. It turns out they are all the testimonials of all the ships uncle served on in the early part of his career up to and beyond joining Denholm. From the various materials I can tell you the ships uncle served on. In 1922 he joined the Elmpark then Broompark, Beechpark and later Hollypark, Glenpark, Lylepark and Mountpark. I have some letters written to him in 1928, 1929 and two in 1930 by Denholm's superintendent which reflect the difficulties of paying crew at the height of the Depression.
    From a small press clipping among the papers I know that in January of 1945 uncle was awarded an MBE he is stated as serving on the Glenpark and taking part in the Sicily invasion and D Day landings. William Prince was born in July 1890 he first went to sea in 1913. According to the newspaper article he was torpedoed five times during World War I 'and had similar experiences' in World War II. His life at sea spans a remarkable time which tells a great deal about the vital role of the merchant navy and I would love to build up a clearer story that does full justice to this contribution.
    I knew my great uncle well. He came to Sunday dinner every week after his retirement and I grew up listening, not always attentively, to some of his experiences. I would like to find out more and fill in some of the gaps as well as confirm and firm up some of my memories of stories I heard. I would be grateful for any suggestions and help any of the old sailors and friends could offer, tracing history of this sort is entirely new to me so all help is welcome. Thank you.

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    Default Re: William Price

    welcome ...some career there are folk on the site who sailed with denholms they may help regards cappy

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    Default Re: William Price

    Hi Merryl,
    Here are some photos of the GLENPARK, BROOMPARK and BEECHPARK and LYLEPARK
    hope they are OK for you
    Cheers
    Brian
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Captain Kong; 16th May 2015 at 04:36 PM.

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    Default Re: William Price

    I have in my possession a script written by a Christopher and Michael Smith about the sinking of the Lylepark by the German commerce Michel on the11th June 1942 .
    This was sent to me by Chris Smith as his Uncle served on the Lylepark the reason he sent me this script is that the Michel sank the ship i was a young seaman on (Gloucester Castle )just about a month after the Lylepark sinking and we was with some of the survivors off the Lylepark and ended up as pow*s
    His uncle was Charles Smith

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    Default Re: William Price

    well lou that would be interesting to see if poss ......regards cappy

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    Default Re: William Price

    Quote Originally Posted by Merryl W Davies View Post
    From a small press clipping among the papers I know that in January of 1945 uncle was awarded an MBE he is stated as serving on the Glenpark and taking part in the Sicily invasion and D Day landings. William Prince was born in July 1890.
    Hello and welcome Merryl,
    I have him, I think, but under two different dates of birth which is not unusual in records of the period. Was he born in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales? I have dates of birth in 1888 and 1892 but both have the same MN Discharge Number.
    There is a WW1 medal card held at Kew in piece BT 351/1/114856
    There is a WW2 medal card held at Kew in piece BT 395/1/79073
    Both those cards can be downloaded for £3.30.

    If I have the correct man then there is also a CR 10 card for him which shows a mugshot ID photo. Let me know if you haven't got it? If you don't have his Discharge Book then I can point you to the file references at Kew for his WW2 service. Let me know please?

    He was awarded the MBE in the New Year's Honours List gazetted 3 January 1945.

    Regards
    Hugh
    "If Blood was the price
    We had to pay for our freedom
    Then the Merchant Ship Sailors
    Paid it in full”


    www.sscityofcairo.co.uk

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    Default Re: William Price

    Dear Hugh
    Thank you so much for your reply. You have indeed got the right person and I too have come across the variable dates of birth in the papers I have - though I have his birth certificate which gives the year as 1890. Not only was uncle born in Merthyr Tydfil he returned there on his retirement living in a house three doors away from his younger brother and across the street from his younger sister, my grandmother. I would be fascinated to trace details of his service during the wars. One story I clearly remember is uncle telling of being on a ship which was torpedoed and broke in two, one half sunk and the other did not! The story was seared into my consciousness as the 'price of admiralty' as Kipling termed in his poems - in a way which as usual blurs and overlooks the service and contribution of merchant sailors. I love the fact you paraphrase the line so pertinently on your post!
    I had come across the CR10 card but have no idea what it was for, do you know by any chance? Among the papers I found a certificate for attending a Gunnery School in Halifax Nova Scotia dated June of 1942. According to family report uncle was involved in the building programme for liberty ships - it meant he spent time in the US during which he got to visit the Metropolitan Opera House regularly to indulge his life long passion for opera.
    I would indeed be grateful for all pointers you could provide. I feel that at last I making a proper start on a project I have long thought of only in vague terms so heartfelt thanks to you for your help.
    Merryl

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    Default Re: William Price

    Hi Merryl,

    His MN service record (CRS10) will, if it has survived, be held at Kew in piece BT 382/1452. This will detail all of his ships from January 1941. Unfortunately it is best viewed by visit to Kew or you may need to go the researcher route. The file is not easy or cheap to obtain online.

    I had come across the CR10 card but have no idea what it was for, do you know by any chance?
    The CR10 cards were introduced in August 1918 together, with a new identity and service certificate (RS2 book) to be carried by the seaman. CR10 cards are arranged alphabetically and provide personal, photo, and voyage details (although some do not have voyage details as in your uncles case). Note* this card is part of the Fourth Register of Seamen (effectively 1918-1940) not to be confused with the CRS 10 which is part of the Fifth Register of Seamen 1941-1972 which covers the WW2 period.

    Among the papers I found a certificate for attending a Gunnery School in Halifax Nova Scotia dated June of 1942.
    Over 150,000 merchant seamen were trained at DEMS gunnery schools across the country and abroad. They were called merchant seamen gunners and assisted the military DEMS gunners when their ship was called to action stations.

    If you have any question please feel free to ask and we will try and help.

    Regards
    Hugh
    "If Blood was the price
    We had to pay for our freedom
    Then the Merchant Ship Sailors
    Paid it in full”


    www.sscityofcairo.co.uk

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    Default Re: William Price

    Lou,
    My Great Uncle John Turner was the cook on the Lylepark. He was taken to Japan and was a POW at Fukuoka #3. I'm looking for any history. Any information would be greatly appreciated.
    Best,
    Alex

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    Default Re: William Price

    Thank you Alex
    Sadly our Lou is no longer with us , as he passed on a few Years back.
    We all miss him here!@
    Thanks
    Cheers
    Senior Member and Friend of this Website

    R697530

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