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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!


I recently came across this tunic from the 1st Battalion Middlesex Volunteers who were based in The Elms in Hornsey in the years around 1900. (Read more of that story on HoL here)

This is a classic British Army 'red coat' scarlet tunic, apparently of rough cloth, with 1st Battalion Middlesex Volunteer woven shoulder titles. There is also a badge on the sleeve showing a rifle (I seem to recall the regiment being referred to at the 1st Rifles at some point: perhaps it's signifying that).

The old label also survives showing that it was an order from Samuel Brothers Ltd London for a man called Harling at Hornsey.

I thought it would be interesting to see if I could narrow down the field on who this Harling might be. Allowing for Anecstry's peculiarities, I could only find one Harling in Hornsey. William Harling fits the bill, He was a 22-year-old mechanical engineer from Hornsey Park Road. 

When I was writing up The Elms story I contacted a couple of the regimental organisations, who were both very helpful. I've alerted then about this tunic and I hope I'll learn more about this tunic as a result

(Click and click again on both images to enlarge them.)

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Let us know if you end up making a connection.

There was a Rev Harling, mentined in book extract below.   Also noted from a google search is something that might just give you an Australian connection !  ;-)

https://www.femaleconvicts.org.au/docs/lists/ConvictsInDatabase.pdf

Female Convicts in Van Diemen’s Land

Harling, Emma

Ship:Garland Grove

Police No.: 415

Approx age: 24

Trial: 5 April 1841 at Central Criminal Court, London, England

So interesting.   I hope Samuels do get back to you Hugh and maybe confirm your thoughts.  My grandfather was in the 3rd Battalion Middx Regiment and I've been desperately trying to get details of his service without much luck.   I don't know if he was a Regular, Reservist or if he answered Kitchener's call.  He was killed in action, May 1915 aged 38.   Owing to his age I assumed he was a Regular or maybe Reservist ?

Ken, old mate, apologies for late response but thanks very much for your suggestions.  I do have quite a bit of basic info on him such as Regiment, Service Nr, War Graves Inscription at Menin Gate but I need to find out more detail about him for my own peace of mind.   I'm not that up to speed with research sites and just come up against brick walls.  I understand that his records may have been lost in the Blitz and such but would love to know when he joined up, where he was based, when he sailed out/from etc.  His was such a short war.  All I have is assumptions.  Think I will have to hire a private researcher to best try and fill in the missing pieces. 

But I do appreciate your suggestion Ken thank you.

As an aside I also enjoy reading your often humorous posts.   Take care.

Righty ho, John. Best of luck in finding out more about him. I was fortunate with my Dad, as I was able to establish which division his RE Signals company was attached to and therefore could trace the engagements he might have been involved in. I was on a trip with Hornsey army cadets to Ypres in 1961, so laying our wreath at Menin Gate would have embraced your grandfather's memory.

Thanks Ken.   Oh wow Ken......is that a pic of yourself ?     Was your dad killed in action ?     I did go on a tour of The Western Front battlefields in 2019 and sought out my Grandad's inscription on The Menin Gate and a Great Uncle's (Grandad's son !!)  inscription at The Pozieres Cemetery.       He also has no known grave.   Such moving ceremonies.

Hello, John. Thankfully, Dad survived three years as frontline signaller. Apart from laying general comms cabling, they were liable to be following up the assault, unreeling lines for the attack troops to contact base to report success.Of course it wasn't always a question of success...

That was me as part of the contingent of Middlesex army cadets from the TA Centre in Priory Road. A tour of western front was one of the benefits of membership. Very sobering and we certainly weren't left with the notion that soldiering was other than serious business. The other foreign trip was Nijmegen Marches, 4 days/100miles. Even though just cadets, WW2 was sufficiently recent for the locals to be very well disposed towards our  British military uniforms.

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