The Reeves Brothers in World War One - Herbert

Herbert John Reeves, in soldier uniform. | Image courtesy of Neil Painter
Herbert John Reeves
Image courtesy of Neil Painter
Herbert John Reeves | Neil Painter
Herbert John Reeves
Neil Painter
  • Herbert John Reeves was born in 1899, in Tamworth. Later moving to Kingsbury, where he worked at Kingsbury Colliery.
  • On 17th September 1914 at Brook Street in Birmingham, Herbert joined the Royal Army Medical Corps as a driver at the age of 15.
  • On 29th March 1915, Herbert travelled from Southampton to Le Havre, France with the 1st South Midland Division Field Ambulance.
  • He was admitted to hospital with impetigo, a highly contagious bacterial skin infection causing blisters and sores, on 15th June 1915, and again with Eczema, an uncomfortable skin inflammation, on 5th July 1915.
  • On 21st March 1916 Herbert was transferred to the 48th South Midland Division, where he was responsible for a Horse Transport Field Ambulance, a mobile frontline medical unit. He was at the following of the Battles of the Somme; The Battle of Bazentin Ridge, The Battle of Pozieres Ridge, The Battle of the Ancre Heights, and The Battle of the Ancre.

Shell shock

  • Herbert was posted back to base camp with shell shock, now known as PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and then moved to the Army Hospital at Woolwich London.
  • On 18th February 1917 he was posted AWL (Absent Without Leave), after not returning from leave for 48 days, to which he served 28 days punishment. This punishment could have been, detention, field punishment, or forfeiture of all pay.
  • He was posted to the 3rd West Yorkshire Regiment on 25th May 1917.
  • At the end of the war he was sent back to work at Kingsbury Colliery.
  • Herbert was awarded the Victory Medal, the British War Medal and the Bronze Star 1914-15.
More from Kingsbury
More from World War One
More from Polesworth
More from World War One