South Africa Boer War and Great War 1914 Old Contemptible’s long service group awarded to Sergeant A.J. Gardner, 2nd Dragoon Guards, formerly 1st Volunteer Battalion, Leicestershire Regiment and King’s Royal Rifle Corps, and later 6th Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment, who saw service during the Boer War in South Africa from November 1901 with the 2nd Dragoon Guards, and was present on operations towards the end of the war in the Cape Colony, the Orange Free State and the Transvaal. He was promoted to Squadron Quarter Master Sergeant towards the very end of the campaign in April 1902. Still in service on the outbreak of the Great War, he saw service with the British Expeditionary Force out on the Western Front from 15th August 1914 through to September 1915. He briefly re-enlisted into the 6th Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment and saw service from 1921 through to 1924.
Queens South Africa Medal, five clasps: Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, South Africa 1901, South Africa 1902; (4208 SQ: QR: MR: SJT: A.J. GARDNER. 2ND. DRAGOON GDS:); 1914 Star with Clasp; (4208 SJT. A.J. GARDNER. 2/D.GDS.); British War Medal and Victory Medal; (2DG-4208 SJT. A.J. GARDNER. 2-D.GDS.); Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, GVR Fm. bust; (4208 SJT: A.J. GARDNER. 2/D.G.)
Arthur John Gardner was born in Leicester, Leicestershire, and having worked as a clerk and seen service as a Private with the 1st Volunteer Battalion, Leicestershire Regiment, and with the King’s Rifle Rifle Corps prior to purchasing his discharge, then enlisted into the British Army at Leicester on 26th September 1893, joining as a Private (No.4208) the 2nd Dragoon Guards. Appointed to Lance Corporal on 7th July 1894, he was posted out to Egypt from 28th September 1895, and was posted home from 4th November 1896. Promoted to Corporal on 11th October 1897, and appointed to Lance Sergeant on 28th September 1898, he was promoted to Sergeant on 21st March 1899, and with the Boer War, was posted to South Africa from 15th November 1901, being present on operations towards the end of the war in the Cape Colony, the Orange Free State and the Transvaal. Gardner was promoted to Squadron Quarter Master Sergeant towards the very end of the campaign on 3rd April 1902. With the end of the war, his regiment remained on garrison duty in South Africa, and Gardner was posted home on 24th January 1908, before reverting to Sergeant ‘at his own request’ on 7th April 1908.
Gardner then saw home service with his regiment, but with the outbreak of the Great War, saw service out on the Western Front from 15th August 1914, being awarded the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal in Army Orders No.117 of 1st April 1915, he was posted home on 10th September 1915, and discharged to pension on 25th September 1915, having completed 22 years service. Gardner is confirmed as having claimed the Clasp and Roses to his 1914 Star in February 1920. In the meantime, Gardner had gone to work as a temporary barrack warden, however he then re-attested for two years service with the Territorial Army at Wolverhampton on 8th July 1921, joining as a Private (No.4907695) the South Staffordshire Regiment, he was posted to the 6th Battalion, and immediately promoted to Sergeant, being permitted to extend his service for a further years service on 30th April 1923, he was discharged on 7th July 1924. Confirmed as his full entitlement. light contact wear, Good very fine