It’s fair to say that I didn’t buy this postcard for the picture!
The picture, which isn’t especially clear and doesn’t even fill up the postcard, shows French General Sarrail awarding decorations in Salonika, with the remains of Zeppelin LZ85 in the background.
The message on the back isn’t even especially interesting – although it is entirely legible – no, what ‘sold’ the card to me was the fact that the soldier who wrote it can be identified. Cards often have a message on with just a forename but, in this case, we have ‘31337 Sergt Lloyd’. A quick search on the National Archives WW1 Medal Index Cards soon identified our man: 31337 Acting Colour Serjeant Albert E. Lloyd, Welsh Regiment.
My interest was piqued so I shelled out £3.50 to download the card (more than I’d paid for the postcard!) but, disappointingly, it gives no indication of which battalion he served with. Three battalions of the Welsh Regiment served with the BSF:
- 1st Battalion – 84 Brigade, 28 Division
- 11th (Service) Battalion – 67 Brigade, 22 Division
- 23rd (Service) Battalion (Welsh Pioneers) – 28 Division Pioneers
The next step will be to investigate the ‘dark art’ of service numbers or follow up the medal rolls at the National Archives, Kew, but that’s for another day. I’m pleased to say, though, that Albert appears to have survived the war as his name and number are not to be found in CWGC casualty records.
I’ll leave the last words to Albert, or Lloydie as he signs himself …
My dear Mary
Received the papers yesterday thanking you so much. I have no particular news. I am quite well, also Matt. Hoping you & all at home are quite well. I managed to get these few cards from the canteen. Nothing further this time.
With best love xxx
31337 Sergt Lloyd
PS Please excuse so short a note.