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16th January 200524th Regiment Bands
By Michael Boyle
I recently came across this interesting web page ;

that has certainly enlightened me to the depth and status of the members of British Regimental Bands. From interesting tid-bits like the 1801 band whose ages ran from 11(w/4yrs. sevice!) to 50 (w/ 36yrs.), that the 1st Battailion Band had recieved artillery training in 1878 at King William's Town and were subsequently mentioned in despatches for the keen handling of their two 7pdrs. at Itelizi and Mount Kemp and unfortunately reduced to two members after Isandhlwana ; the well known survivor E.Wilson and Bandmaster C.G.Burck who apparently was not present because he was not a member of the Rgt. being a foreigner prohibited from from taking part in combat by an Army Order of 1814.(But after the Army Reform Act of 1881 being appointed W.O.)

The bands ranks also include one Sgt-Bandmaster Harry Rattray who at age 101 may be the last of the AZW veterans to die in combat, as a result of the Blitz, in 1941.

Band members were also referred to as "the Gentlemen of the Regiment"due to their superior education and held to such a high standard that if one were awarded a Regimental Entry he was struck from the Band establishment for 3 mos.(Having read Holme's Noble 24th I can imagine how difficult that must have been to avoid!)

Musicians,cooks, ammo carriers, stretcher bearers and artillerymen ! It seems that band members of the 24th at least,led a rather full life.



16th January 2005Martin Boyle
Thanks for that link, cousin Michael. One of my great-great grandfathers was a civilian bandmaster with various regiments. He was a foreigner, too. This link might help me to get more info.

Thanks again.

Best regards,

16th January 2005Michael Boyle
Cousin Martin,

You're quite welcome. Ya wouldn't be hailing from the Glenties,Donegal side o'te clan now would ya?(I'd love to find a link to the Regiments.)


16th January 2005Martin Boyle
Mike, I haven't yet managed to find out where in Ireland my Boyles came from. They left before the Famine. My bandmaster ancestor wasn't Irish. He was Italian.

Keep looking and you might find something one day.

Best regards,

18th January 2005Rich
Interesting site there...I guess the Keynsham fellows would probably include these fellows in their roll. I'm not sure if they've got Bullard's grave or any of the other band members who died at Isandhlwana.
19th January 2005Julian whybra
Three bandsmen from the old band formed part of the new - Burck, wilson and the other survivor, Bickley