Mantle, Frederick Allen, 315 and 346, Police Constable.

Paul Watts

Frederick Allen Mantle Re-appointment To The Police
Herts Police Historical Society

Early Life.

Frederick Allen Mantle was born in 1888 at Kingsbury, Hendon and baptised on the 30th September 1888 at Holy Innocents, Kingsbury.

His father, Charles Mantle, married his mother, Clara Louisa McCullum on the 9th August 1885 at Kingsbury. They had six children of whom one died prior to the 1911 census. They were:
1. Harold Charles born in 1886 at Kingsbury. He served as Driver 61967 in the 33rd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery in WW1.
2. Frederick Allen.
3. Herbert William born in 1891 and died in 1896 at Kingsbury.
4. Clara Louisa born in 1892 at Kingsbury.
5. Edward John born in 1897 at Kingsbury.
6. George Stanley born in 1899 at Kingsbury

At the time of the 1891 census the family were living at 8, Kingsbury Lane, Kingsbury, Middlesex and Charles was employed as a groom. During the 1901 census they were living at 1, Fryant Cottages, Kingsbury, Middlesex and Charles was still a groom.

By the time of the 1911 census the family were living at Burton Lodge Farm, Park Street Lane, St. Albans and Charles is a farmer. Frederick has left home and joined the Army.

Early Army Service.

Frederick’s Army Service Record has not survived but from a number of other sources we know the following.

He enlisted in the Royal Field Artillery on the 16th November 1906 almost certainly signing up for short service of 12 years. During the 1911 census he was serving with the 83rd Battery, Royal Field Artillery at Kamptee, Central Province, India as a Gunner. At that time his occupation or trade was shown as a waiter.

It is not known when he left the Army, but he would have entered the Army Reserve. It is also not known when he applied to join the Police, but it is thought most likely to have been just before the outbreak of the War, based on what happened when he re-joined.

Police Service.

His Police Service Record has also not survived, and the following has been taken from a number of General Orders.

General Order 118 of 21st July 1915 is a list of 96 officers which included the Chief Constable, 43 Constables who were Army reservists who were recalled and 50 Constables and 2 Sergeants who volunteered for military service. Frederick is shown as PC 315 Mantle F.A. C Div. recalled to the Royal Field Artillery on 4th August 1914.

Army Service During The War.

From his Medal Rolls Index Card, Medal Rolls, a Silver War Badge record, Hospital Admissions and Discharge Registers and a burnt record we know the following. As Gunner 44744 in the 39th Battery, Royal Field Artillery he landed in France on 16th August 1914.

On the 7th October 1914 Gunner 44744 F.A. Mantle, Royal Field Artillery was seriously wounded by shrapnel in his left arm and was admitted to 2nd General Hospital, Gare Maritime Quai D’Éscale and then transferred the same day to the Fort Pitt Hospital, Chatham on Her Majesty’s Hospital Ship St David, arriving there on the 8th October.

He was listed on the Casualty List issued by the War Office on the 8th October as Not previously announced Wounded. He was entitled to wear a “Wound Stripe” as authorised under Army Order 204 of 6th July 1916. The terms of this award being met by his name appearing on this list.

Having recovered from his wound he returned to France and on 16th May 1916 Bombardier 44744 F.A. Mantle of the 79th Brigade, Royal Field Artillery suffered an accidental injury when he received a contused scalp. He was treated for 6 days and returned to duty.

Then on the 21st June 1917 Bombardier 44744 F.A. Mantle of C Battery, 79th Brigade, Royal Field Artillery suffered a gunshot wound to his lower left leg. He was transferred from War Hospital, Bradford to The County of Middlesex War Hospital, Napsbury, St Albans and then again on 8th August 1917 to The Orthopaedic Hospital, Shepherds Bush.

He was discharged from the 4th Reserve Battery, Royal Field Artillery on the 6th February 1918 due to his wounds under Paragraph 392 (xvi) of the King’s Regulation 2(a)(i). He was issued Silver War Badge 324252 on the 11th February 1918. He was awarded the 1914 star and received his clasp and roses and the British War and Victory Medals.

Re-joining The Police.

General Order 201 of 21st December 1920 announced Frederick’s re-appointment to the Police. It referred to a previous Order, number 21 of 1918, which has not survived but it probably said that Frederick had not been fit enough to re-join the Police at that time. This time it stated having now been certified by the Constabulary Staff Surgeon to be fit for further Police Service, he was re-appointed to the strength of the Force as PC 346 Mantle F. of R Division at Headquarters at £3/10/0 a week from 16th December 1920.

Something of note in this Order is the change in his Warrant or Collar Number from 315 to 346. Prior to the outbreak of war, it was fairly common to issue the same Warrant Number to more than one individual providing they were posted to different Divisions so that the Divisional letter would differentiate between them. No record of an Order instructing that this should end and that Warrant Numbers should become unique has been found, but it was obviously issued simply by the fact of the number of returning Constables who were not given their old number, as someone else was already using it, and were issued with a new one.

General Order 80 of 18th May 1921 announced that three Recruit Constables, having been brought on the Roster for duty, would be transferred from Headquarters to Divisions. PC 346 Mantle F.A. was posted to B Division at Bishops Stortford from the 17th May 1921.

Resignation From The Police.

General Order 111 of the 8th July 1921 Announced Frederick’s Resignation.
“Police Constable 346 Frederick Allen Mantle, B Division, having submitted on 2nd July 1921 an application to be permitted to resign his appointment, his resignation is accepted and will take effect on 2nd August 1921. PC Mantle will be paid up to 2nd August inclusive, and his name will be struck off the establishment of the Force on that date”.

Life After The Police.

In the 1921 Electoral Roll listed as living at The Kennels, Gorhambury are Frederick, his brother George and his parents.

Frederick married Lily Sibley in 1924 at St. Albans and they later had two children, Joyce Doreen born in 1925 at St. Albans and Allen Victor born in 1927 at St. Albans.

In the 1925 Electoral Roll Frederick is listed as living at 2, Grove Cottage, Main Road, London Colney and in the 1930 Electoral Roll Frederick and Lily are listed as living at 8, Birkfield Cottage, London Colney.

Frederick died aged 47 at St. Albans in 1934.

This page was added on 04/02/2020.

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