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A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2014 8:39 pm
by mrdeacon
Whilst I was at Caldbeck churchyard taking photos I got talking to a chap from the village, and he said that there was a very interesting hut just down the road from the church. So off we went and to be honest I was well made up with what I saw it was a hut that was made out of WW1 ammunition boxes, it is looking a bit worse for wear now but what do you expect after nearly 100 years old.
The house belonged to the Greenup family who had 5 of their family serve in the great war. The brother who made the hut was John Greenup who served in the 5th Bn Border's. The chap also told me after John's death in the 1980's when they were moving an old grandfather clock something moved inside and when they opened it up inside was a Lee Enfield gun (what a find).

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2014 10:09 pm
by kerchi
You run into some pretty interesting folk on your little outings! Great story and, of course, great photos too. I am surprised it is still standing :eeek:

I can make out the dates and "cordite" but what about the acronyms?

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2014 10:13 pm
by mrdeacon
The what "acronyms" ::) never even heard of that Chris :D)

The chap and I had a great crack it was a good afternoon, and it was lucky the family were enjoying a lovely afternoon tea in a café so no complaints from them.

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:50 am
by plbramham
I reckon something like that should have a preservation order on it - just as important to social history as a stately home!
If it ever falls down, tell the guy I bet the Border Regt museum ( sorry haven't got used to the new name yet!)- even the Imperial War Museum, would love the planks (or he could sell them individually to collectors on E-Bay!).
Interesting that the lettering still exists after 100 years of Cumbrian weather! Are they painted on ( like through a stencil) or are they branded on - burnt into the surface?
Obviously the ammo did not go overseas -they would not have brought boxes back eh? If the ammo was made in 1918, it might have been kept for years, especially as the 5th Bn were territorials, at the local drill hall armoury? Have you checked for the guys medal card or records on Ancestry? (Obviously he survived so will not be CWGC.)

I wonder if the corrugated iron roof was also "army surplus"?

Very interesting find, maybe now you have visited the owner may realise it's importance and not pull it down!

Cheers Paul

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 9:04 am
by plbramham
Another quick look at acronyms (abbreviation initials)
I believe "TARE" is weight, "NETT" is quantity ( e.g something such as, in modern terms, a lorry delivery to a shop with cardboard boxes, like say, number "3 of 10")
Not sure about RDB. Maybe "R" is Regiment, and "B" battalion/brigade? - just guesses there!
Ah somewhere I have a book which includes WW1 munitions - will try to find it and see if any references.

Regards Paul

Later: Now just thought, because he was 5th Border does not mean he got the boxes from them. There was a "Cumberland" artillery unit around during WW1 - also territorials I believe. Maybe " B" could be "battery" i.e. shell boxes? Just an idea? But "Cordite" massively suggests artillery!

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Sun Apr 27, 2014 6:32 pm
by kerchi
This hut certainly needs some TLC; it could be historically important but it also looks rather dangerous too. I think at the very least if the building collapses the timber could be donated to the museum (if they have space - I don't know if they do) simply for nostalgia alone.

Regarding the other words on the planks, I didn't know about TARE weight but after a quick search and with the help of a dictionary and Wikipedia it is the weight of an empty vehicle or container. The NET weight is determined by subtracting the TARE weight from the gross weight (laden weight), so using this the weight of the goods carried (the net weight) can be calculated.

Also from Wikipedia:

Cordite RDB
During World War I acetone was in short supply in Great Britain, and a new experimental form was developed for use by the Royal Navy. This was Cordite RDB (= Research Department formula B); which was 52% collodion, 42% nitroglycerine and 6% petroleum jelly. It was produced at HM Factory, Gretna; and the Royal Navy Cordite Factory, Holton Heath.

Cordite RDB was later found to become unstable if stored too long.

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2014 11:30 am
by plbramham
Yes re: TARE, during my brief 4 year period in catering, you put the container on the scales and pressed "Tare" before adding content, thus it removed the weight of the container, just weight of the contents, Paul

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 9:27 am
by kerchi
plbramham wrote:Yes re: TARE, during my brief 4 year period in catering, you put the container on the scales and pressed "Tare" before adding content, thus it removed the weight of the container, just weight of the contents, Paul

The exact same principle when measuring my cereal in the morning when I am trying to be sensible and have the required "portion" of 40g, which to me is not even snack sized. Turn on scales - bowl on scales - press the on button again - only weight of contents measured.

Re: A hut made out of WW1 ammo boxes.

PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:52 pm
by mrdeacon
Was back at Caldbeck last month June 2017 and unfortunately the hut no longer exists well gutted.