Cecil Rowland Allen
Rank: Driver ? (later - Trooper)
Service Number: 103649 ? (later - 310491)
Date of Birth: 1898
Regiment: Royal Field Artillery ? (Later - Joined the 9th Queen's Royal Lancers after the war)
Relatives: Father of Vic Lindsay Allen, resident in Hadleigh 2014.
Address: 165 Angel Street, Hadleigh, Suffolk
Little is known of Cecil Rowland Allen's great war service. However, the photograph shows Cecil after the war wearing the 3 main great war medals (The 1914/15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal). This suggests he saw service in France or Belgium from at least 1915.
Is son remembers seeing the medals, which have long since gone missing and he recalls that his father served with the Artillery.
A search of the existing Medal Cards shows one result for a Cecil R Allen who entered France on the 5th October 1915. This man served with the Royal Field Artillery and so could be the Hadleigh Cecil. The Regimental number on the card is 103649.
What is known is that Cecil rejoined the Army in 1921. He went on to serve 18 years with the 9th Queen's Royal Lancers and left the army in 1939.
If Cecil had already served 4 years, then he would retired after a full 22 year career, which is the standard full career for a soldier. At that point he would not have been liable for any further service. It is understood that at the outbreak of WW2, he was invited to rejoin, but he declined this invitation.
It is thought that Cecil originally joined the army in 1914 at the age of 16 and deployed to France at just 17 (under age). His experiences, like those of thousands of others, were grim and left a lasting scar. Throughout the rest of his military career he avoided promotion, choosing to remain a trooper. And this probably explains his reluctance to serve beyond 1939.
Cecil died in 1973.