Bell John Sgt 4444502
Name Bell John
Army number 4444502
Date of birth 27/2/1909 at 24, Queen Street, Birtley - the seventh of twelve children.
Unit Durham Light Infantry. Enlisted 29/4/1925 at Chester-le-Street, TA 8, initially for 4yrs but extended service until outbreak of War. Aged 16 on enlistment, although DLI Enlistment Book records him as 18 years old at the time. Called up August 1939. Posted 8th Bn DLI. Posted 11th Bn DLI as an Instructor based at the Masonic Hall, Chester-le-Street. Served BEF. Taken Prisoner of War - notification received 02/08/1940. Repatriated to the UK. Discharged under King's Regulations 1940 Para 390 (xvi) 7/2/1944.
Company/Battery 8th Bn - B Company, 11th Bn - B Company, C Company.
Platoon or other sub-unit Served in various Platoons in C Company as Platoon Sergeant.
Task or role Instructor, Platoon Sergeant.
Joined Brigade Not yet confirmed but probably 1/9/1939 or very shortly afterwards.
Promotions L/Cpl in 1935. Corporal in August 1939. Sergeant on being posted to 11th Battalion DLI.
Prisoner of War Captured 20/5/1940. Camp number 8B - including time in Lamsdorf.
Died/Killed in action Death recorded in Gateshead District August 1999.
Home address Born Birtley, Miner and Brickworker. Father was also Miner and Brickworker. Research indicates that he married Lavinia E Robinson in the fourth quarter of 1927 - possibly 12/11/1927 - at the Register Office with his sister as a witness.
Source table 11DLI
Sergeant Bell was probably repatriated early due to illness.
To listen to a detailed interview with Mr Bell, conducted by Harry Moses on behalf of the Imperial War Museums Sound Collection, please click here.