Battledress Times



Battledress Times
The general newsletter of the Herts at War Project
This is the first of the new Herts at War newsletters.  There are three occasional newsletters, each targeted to a different group and only two are sent by email.  They are:
  1. Battledress Times: (this one) brings news and information to our general mailing list and, if research activities justify, will provide links to the research one for you to download, if you wish.
  2. On Active Service: – the newsletter for members giving them news on members’ offers and advance notice of events etc.
  3. Research Reconnaissance: is only available as a download, via a website link, and gives more detailed information on research activities to those with an interest.
Where we are now:
It has been a long time since the last newsletter and a lot has happened:
  • The Exhibitions are over.
  • The HLF Grant has finished.
  • We have a new website with greatly improved search facilities.
  • We have a new database with a completely new method of sharing and uploading research.
  • The numbers of men and women commemorated have increased dramatically.
  • Thanks to Dan Hill’s efforts (and your donations) we have been able to maintain our top-quality monthly talks.
  • And we have a membership option with benefits for those who want to be more involved and secure our future.
What’s next?:
Our priorities for the coming months are (and not necessarily in any particular order!):
  • Research – encouraging new researchers and previous researchers to help – see below.
  • Pop-up events – we will be looking for suitable events to attend, these are likely to be one-day, weekend or bank holiday events and if you have any suggestions please let us know.
  • Continue the programme of great free monthly talks.
  • To confirm the details of our 2020 Battlefield Tour (August and details coming soon), a couple of UK visits and perhaps some workshops and social events.
Under consideration:
We are always looking for new ideas, so if you have any suggestions, we would love to receive them, but we would also like to know which (if any) of the following you might be interested in?
  • UK day trips either by coach or individual cars.
  • Research workshops aimed at introducing new people to research and to allow researchers to work socially in group sessions with the opportunity to help those less experienced and learn from those with more.
  • UK Tours – Two or three-day tours, by coach/car with Hotel/B & B and with group visits to museums and locations of military interest.
  • I am also curious as to how many of those with an interest in Herts at War, and use a caravan, motorhome or camp. Do you?
Membership: if you would like to know more about the advantages of membership, please visit
Research: How are we doing?
Research - How are we doing?:
The following is an overview. If have a serious interest or want to get involved yourself, read on, but also visit
You are forgiven if you think that nothing much has been happening, but you would be wrong. The research for the project has been a bit like the proverbial swan, with all the work being done out of sight and unnoticed.
When the old website was switched off there were about 5,700 biographies uploaded. Now, thanks to our researchers and the generosity of groups and other individuals who have shared their information, we have over 9,500. Even this does not tell the whole story.
One big problem with the old website was the potential duplication of biographies.  The same name on different memorials might be different people, but research has established that very often they are the same person.  When research of each location was undertaken by different people this may not be spotted and in those cases, biographies were duplicated.  Many hundreds of these have been combined, and their biographies improved.
Our best guess is that we are vow about halfway to two-thirds of the way through the ‘unique’ names and of course many existing biographies could be improved.
Now is the time for us to accelerate our progress and we are asking previous researchers to come back and for new ones to volunteer – please think about helping us undertake research of some kind.  You will be helping commemorate the men and women from Hertfordshire who served.  Please get in touch to help or get more information.
There are many different ways of helping and if you are seriously thinking about doing so, please read the latest Research Reconnaissance newsletter which can be downloaded from “here”, but broadly they fit into the following categories:
  1. Photography: Travel to locations to photograph the memorials for the project.
  2. New research using genealogy websites: If you have access to Ancestry or FindMyPast (or similar) then we need you to help research locations, new names and create new biographies or to add details or specific areas of research to the existing biographies.
  3. Data correction and improvement: For this you do not need access to any genealogy websites, this is about looking for problems and helping correct them, combining and uploading existing duplicated biographies and uploading existing biographies which have not yet been added.
Events: Don't forget to see and book the forthcoming talks and events visit
We hope you have found this newsletter of interest. Please help with the research if you can.
If there is anything about the project that you would like covered in a future newsletter do let us know or if you have any suggestions or if you would like to write something for inclusion, again please let us know.
The HAW Team
Website - Member's Area
Our mailing and website addresses are:
Herts At War Team

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