Museum of the Manchester Regiment
The Men Behind the Medals

Peter Gaskill

Peter Gaskill :

Peter Gaskill : Efficiency Medal

Efficiency Medal

Peter was born in November 1901 in Chorley, Lancashire. His father was called William and his mother was Annie. He had 2 older siblings: Mary Ellen and William, and a younger sister called Annie.

Shortly before Peter was born the family lived at 214 Glebe Street in Leigh, Lancashire. William worked underground in one of the many coalmines found in this area. At some point over the next ten years Peter's mother died and his father remarried to a woman named Sophia. In 1911 they all lived at 40 Northumberland Street in Pemberton, Wigan.

Peter joined the Army in January 1920. At the time he was working as a carter and his father lived at 3 Ashton's Yard in Wigan. He originally enlisted in The Loyal North Lancashire Regiment and was given the service number 57702, but after 146 days he transferred to the Manchester Regiment and joined the 5th Battalion. This was a unit of the Territorial Army (TA) based in Wigan. Peter will have trained as a soldier during evenings and weekends, and kept his civilian job during working hours. He was given a new service number by the Manchester Regiment: 3511156.

As Peter served during peacetime he will have spent most of his Army service training. An exception to this occurred on the 10th April 1921 when he left the 5th Battalion in order to join the Defence Force. A General Strike had been threatened and the Government was worried the police would not be able to control it. The Defence Force was established to provide support to them, if necessary. It was never needed so Peter rejoined the TA on the 4th July.

At some point during his service Peter was promoted to Lance Corporal. In mid 1927 he was serving in C Company, and at this time he was promoted again, to Corporal. Peter's Efficiency Medal was awarded for 12 years service in around 1932. He continued to serve as a Corporal until he left the 5th Battalion on the 1st June 1936.

The Second World War broke out in September 1939 and Peter rejoined the Army on the 6th February 1941. He enlisted in the Royal Corps of Signals, but we don't know anything about his service during the war, or whether he earned any medals for it.

The rest of Peter's life remains a mystery. His medal was donated to the Museum of the Manchester Regiment in November 1945.

Museum of the Manchester Regiment
c/o Portland Basin Museum
Portland Place
Heritage Wharf
Ashton-under-Lyne
OL7 0QA

Telephone: 0161 343 2878
Email: Portland.Basin@tameside.gov.uk
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Trustees of the Manchester Regiment Museum & Archive and Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council