The Keep Military Museum, Dorchester, Dorset
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Research Services Offered by the Keep
The Keep Military Museum offers a research service using resources held in our collection. We can only supply information about our own Regiments. Not all the information we hold is exclusive to us. Please read the read the section explaining the resources we hold in the museum before sending in your query. We do not hold service records.
We need to make a charge for this service:
Please note that we cannot guarantee success and that fees are not refundable. Please allow 6 to 8 weeks for research to be completed.
The Regiments We Cover
We cover the following Regiments only:
We do not cover:
Information We Require
We need you to supply certain information which we do not hold. This would include Regiment, service number, rank, battalion and service dates. This information will be found in the soldier's service record which will be held either at the National Archives, Kew or The Army Personnel Centre, depending on date of discharge.
Service Records for Soldiers Discharged Before 1914
These records are held at the National Archives, Kew. They have not been filmed and you need to visit in person to view them, or hire a researcher to visit on your behalf. See www.nationalarchives.gov.uk for further information. Please note that the records of men killed in, or discharged at the end of, The Boer War, were destroyed.
Service Records for Soldiers Discharged Between 1914 - 1920
These records are held on film at the National Archives, Kew and include service, pension and discharge records. You can also view these films at LDS (Mormon Church) Family History Centres nationwide. Pension, Medal and Service records can be accessed from www.ancestry.co.uk on a pay-per-view basis. Please note that over 60% of World War Service records were destroyed in the blitz and those records that survive are badly damaged. There were no copies. We hold no World War 1 enlistment records. The only records held elsewhere were those for the Guards Regiments.
Officer's records are not available online, although there is an on-line catalogue available on the National Archives website. You will need to visit the National Archives to view these records. Again survival rates are very low. Note that Officers did not have numbers in World War 1.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission website can also supply useful information about soldiers who died in the two World Wars.
Service Records for Soldiers Discharged After March 1920 and Officers Discharged After March 1922
These records are still held by The Army Personnel Centre. Visit the Veterans Agency website www.veterans-uk.info for advice and to download the application forms. You will need a copy of the soldier's death certificate and his army number or his date of birth. If the soldier has been deceased for less than 25 years, you will also need proof that you are the next of kin. There is a £30 fee for this service.
We may be able to assist with service numbers for men who enlisted between the wars.
The Veterans Agency website also gives advices about replacing lost or stolen medals, World War 2 onwards.
Sending in an Enquiry
Please send your enquiry to us at:
The Keep Military Museum
Please enclose as much relevant information as possible, ideally with copies of any service records you have obtained.
Please enclose a cheque for £5 made payable to The Keep Military Museum. If enquiring via the internet, please use the PayPal research payment facility on this website to make your payment.
Please allow 6 to 8 weeks for a reply. Please be aware that we will only photocopy documents and scan photographs if this can be done without damaging the original. Some items are in poor condition.
Visiting The Library in Person
Our library and archive are not open to the public. Under certain circumstances, visits can be arranged for a Wednesday morning, but this is at the discretion of the Curator. We would need at least two weeks notice. We would need an outline of your research needs in the first instance.
Personal archive visits are charged at £20.
Collections Access Policy
A Collections Access Policy is available on request from the Administrator.