WELCOME TO THE BAYLISS LINE. This blog has been created for my family. By "my family" I mean all those who are related to the Bayliss family either by blood, marriage or even relationship. There are, of course, other Bayliss families not related to us but this blog has at its heart a very specific family who had their origins in Gloucestershire. I am connected to that family because my mother was a Bayliss and it was her curiosity that started my research back in the early 1990's. So, what are you likely to see on this blog? Well, as it is a blog, I want it to be as entertaining as possible rather that a dry listing of facts (that is for Ancestry.com). I will, hopefully, be posting entries on our ancestors and relatives, on the places where they lived, and the historical times they lived through. I have an extensive collection of photographs of people and places which I will, of course, be sharing.

I'd like to ask anybody who reads this blog to give me some feedback. I'd really like this to be a two way thing. It sometimes unearths new information and, to be honest, it gives me encouragement. There will be two ways of providing feedback - either through the comment button (you will need a Google account for this) or via the e-mail address which appears on this page - alternatively, ring me. Now scroll down to read the latest entries.....and, of course, via Facebook.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

THE FAMILY AT WAR 1914 - 1918 : Part Four

The Post Office Rifles on parade at King Edward Buildings, London

Of course, Herbert Bayliss was not the only one to do "his bit" during The Great War. Bert's older brother, Albert Charles - or Charlie as he was better known - was already in the forces at the outbreak of hostilities in 1914.  Charlie, although working for the Post Office, was a member of the Territorial Army - specifically the 8th Battalion London Regiment, better known as The Post Office Rifles. Sadly, Charlie's army records have not survived so we know virtually nothing of his service in the military. We do know that in April 1913 he had achieved the rank of Corporal because of a hand written notation on the enlistment papers of his son Alfred, asking that a copy of the papers be forwarded to "Cpl. C. Bayliss". By the end of the war Charlie had risen to the rank of sergeant.

Alfred Percy Bayliss in uniform
 Alfred Percy Bayliss, like his father and three brothers also worked for the Post Office and it seems that they all followed their father into the Territorials.  Alfred was just 17 when he enlisted on 18 April 1913 and initially served as a bugler in the Post Office Rifles, later becoming Rifleman 1692 at the outbreak of the war. His records describe him as five foot, six and a half inches tall with a chest measurement of thirty four and a half inches.  The 8th Battalion went to France with the British expeditionary force on 17th February 1915.  On 25 April 1915 Alfred was shot in the arm as his unit went into action. The wound was serious enough that he was sent home to England. He recovered enough to continue his military service but he was not sent back to France.  On 26th June 1916 he was discharched from the army as "No longer physically fit for war service."

A rather more stressed looking Alfred after his
return fron France
Alfred's brother, named Albert Charles, after his father, also joined The Post Office Rifles in 1913 as a bugler but unlike his brother he seems to have remained a bugler. He was taller than his brothers, standing five foot ten inches. Albert went to France on 17 March 1915 and returned to England on 1 December the same year. There is little more on his record except that he eventually received an army pension of 12 shillings and sixpence a week (for younger readers that equates with a little over 62 pence - although it certainly had more spending power than today!). The records also seem to show that after the war, before his pension was granted, there was a mix up between his records and his father's which nearly resulted in him being granted a sergeant's pension before the mistake was recognised!

There were two other brothers who also served in the Post Office Rifles : Oliver Charles (born 1893) and Hector George (born 1899). At this stage I know little about either except that Oliver is described as a soldier on his 1918 marriage certificate. Although their records do not seem to have survived I have hopes of discovering more details of their careers (both military and postal) when I visit the Royal Mail Archives early next year.

The above picture appeared in a local paper (probably the Islington Gazette) showing Sgt. Albert Charles Bayliss with three of his sons - Oliver (unconfirmed), Alfred and Albert. Unfortunately the caption has been lost. This picture and those showing Alfred Percy were supplied by his son Peter.

Another of Herbert's brothers, George, served in the Royal Navy during the war.



  1. Seriously, who the hell is this Barbara W. Tuchman bloke??!!! She can't hold a candle to this! Splendid, well done!

  2. Hello Ernest,

    I have been clearing out my loft in Deal, Kent, and have found several medals including 3 WW1 medals belonging to Oliver Bayliss. I think he may be a relative of your? I am keen to reunite them with his family if possible. My contact email is s.kendal98@btinternet.com.

    Many thanks