University of Oxford
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8347: Reginald Dixon - Garlick Grandfather

online resource
posted on 2024-01-17, 13:35 authored by Lest We Forget Project Team

Picture of grandfather in frame - alongside the picture are medals. Medals - left to right - standard First World War medals - one is the 1914-15 star, the Gold one is the Victory medal and the third is the Defence medal. General Service Medal when he was in Palestine around 1923; then Second World War medals because he stayed in. He was in, then he left and came back again after his wife died. He went back twice because when his wife died which was in the fifties, he had been out for four or five years and he went back again. Looked at full service record to confirm when he started, joined the navy. His Second World War medals the Star and the Defence and Victory medal again and his Naval long service medal with bars because he's done, not sure how many years for that. Looked back at his service record to confirm, front page states he joined in 1914, 11th June, just before the start of the First World War. He was an armours apprentice, became an armourer's mate, and armourer and then a gunner. Main thing known about grandfather was that he was at the Battle of Jutland on HMS Benbow. Gillian showed a percussion cap from HMS Benbow.

Then they showed a brass ship that had the names of the ships he had been on. Discussed HMS Warspite and that there is now going to be a submarine named the same. Grandfather was based in Plymouth. On the Benbow, he was based in Scotland because that is where the grand fleet was. He came down to Weymouth. He was on HMS Hood, fortunately, not when it was sunk. When he left the navy, he was in Plymouth. When his wife died and he went back in he was at Drake where he was helping the reserves for four or five years. He was on Benbow for the Battle of Jutland. He was about 16/17 then. Was born in 1895. Benbow was not taking much part in the action. Was not attacked but was firing at the German fleet. Because he had not seen anything like this happen, so he was below, but went up on deck to see what was happening and the flash from the main armament going off burned his face. Left him with a permanent red nose. So he made the percussion cap himself out of a 1lb star shell.

Gillian then referred to a transcript, not for publication, the speech of the Admiral Sir David Beatty, Commander in Chief of the Grand Fleet on board HMS Revenge. The transcript is of the speech that he gave to all of the Grand Fleet after the battle. On the 23rd November 1918. Just after the event.

Gillian moved onto the Scouts letters: Lord and Lady Baden Powell, letters dated August 1918, March 1918. Letters from the Boys Scouts Association, Buckingham Palace, signed by Baden-Powell.

He was trying to set up a Sea Scouts group. Gillian says that there is more from the Second world war where he set up a deep-sea scout on HMS Adventurer and he's got this wonderful photo album and diary whilst he was on Benbow. 1918. All the letters were addressed to Dear Dixon. By May 1918 he was considered a scout master.

Discussed whether anything had been done with the Scouts association. Gillian advised that she was going to as there was such a lot of information about how he got to be a scout master. Discussed content of letters. Letters of reference about his skills when trying to set up a scout's organisation.

Gillian's husband advised that he kept all the diaries that he kept when he was out in the Far East. Mainly about the scouts.

Family pocket watch. Names of all those who had served. Not much history known about the watch. Was passed down to Gillian.


Name of contributor(s)

Gillian Garlick

Subject of the story/individual the object(s) relate to

Reginald James Dixon

Date(s) the event(s) in the story took place


Location(s) where the event(s) in the story took place



Frame with photo and medals - WW1 & WW2; Benbow percussion cap; Sir David Beatty speech; Brass ship 1914-45; 3 x photos; Service record; Bradford Home Coming write up. 243: 5 x scout letters 244: 2 x 1917 reference letters 245: Family pocket watch.

Community Collection Day

South West Roadshow, Plymouth (06/03/19)

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