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3-Pioneer-Battalion-Band (redirected from 3 Pioneer Battalion Band)

Page history last edited by Lenore Frost 6 years, 2 months ago

Volunteers of Essendon and Flemington, 1914-1918



3rd Pioneer Battalion Band


Right click on the photos, then click again for a large version of the photos.

Please help with identifications if you can.


The Headquarters or Depot Band, in which the Crouch brothers served prior to joining the 3rd Pioneer Bn on 22 February 1916.  Annotations on reverse: "Jan 1916" &  "with W. Scattergood's Compliments". Taken at Broadmeadows. Courtesy of Judith Williams.

Top Row, L-R:  1,   2,  3,    4,    5,   

Second Row, L-R:    1,  2,   3,   4,   5,   6,   7 Elrington-M-G-Pte-1534,   8 Pte Bill Crouch of Murtoa,   9, 

Third Row, L - R:  1,   2,   3,    4,    5,    6,    7,    8,   9,    10,    11,   12,    13 

Fourth Row, L -R:   1 Cpl----,  2,  3,   4,  5 Sgt ----,  6,  7 Sgt --- ,  8  Pte Ern Crouch of Murtoa, 9  

Front, L-R:  1,  2,     .


This unknown band member appears to be the cornet-player

in the centre of the top row in the preceding photo. 

Courtesy of Judith Williams.


This photo is of Monte Elrington, a member of both the Depot Band and the

3rd Pioneers Band.  Monte appears to be in the top photo, 2nd row, No 7.

Courtesy of Judith Williams.


3 Pioneer Band parading up Collins Street, 1916.  Photo courtesy of Judith Williams


Fundraising was done by the soldiers and citizens to find the money to purchase instruments for the 3 Pioneer Battalion Band.  The above march seems likely to have been held on Wednesday 10 May, 1916.  "The route of the march will be as follows: -Leave King street at  half past 11 o'clock, and proceed via Collins, Spring, and Victoria streets to Royal Park, where the men will have lunch."    The centre horsemen of the three behind the band was Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Law.  The business on the left, Southwell Coultas & Co was located on the east side of Collins Street, between Swanston and Russell.  they are probably passing Scots Church on the right of the photo.  Pte Les Vosti can be identified in the third column from the right, and three rows back from the front. 


PIONEER BATTALION. (1916, May 11). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957), p. 7. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article2105707


A band rehearsal, probably at Broadmeadows, dated on reverse "24.4.16".

Photo courtesy of Judith Williams.


Below are two sections of a photo showing the 3rd Pioneer Battalion Headquarters Co band, taken at Salisbury Plains camp, 1916.   Identifications of the men welcome. Photo courtesy of Judith Williams. Right click on the mouse and select View Image for a large picture.


From the left:  1 --, 2 --, 3 --, 4 --, 5 --, 6 --, 7 Ernest Crouch of Murtoa, 8 --, 9 --,   10  --, 11 --.


From the left:  1 --, 2 --, 3 --, 4 --, 5 Les Vosti, 6 --, 7 --, 8 --, 9 --,   10 William Crouch of Murtoa, 11 --, 12 --.


While on the Salisbury Plains, the 3rd Pioneer Battalion Band played for the King as he made an inspection, and the troops later marched past, described by William Crouch of Murtoa in a letter to his future  wife Betsy, 3.10.1916:


"Last Saturday was our third division sports we were given a full day off.  We fell in on the parade ground, the sports commenced at 10am.  Massed bands played at 10:30.  Our band played a program from 11:30 to 12 each batt band belonging to the division were in attendance and played a program in turn the sports adjourned from 12:30 to 2 for lunch massed bands played again at 2 then we were finished for the day. The sports were a great success and some keen competition took place, the sports concluded at 5pm. Members of the pioneer batt won several events.  Well Bet I had the honor of seeing His Majesty the King and also playing in His presence, a review of all the Australian and New Zealand troops took place on Salisbury Plains at a place called Bulford about four miles from our camp, there were estimated 30,000 troops on parade, the weather could have been better, just before the King arrived a shower of rain fell and just after the review was over and the King got away it started again and rained. Until about tea time all the troops got wet going home.  The King arrived at 11:30am and inspected the troops then the march past started it took an hour and a quarter to pass the saluting base. There were 26 Australian batt bands and one New Zealand in attendance, we played in groups, there being five groups and one band master over each, it seemed like South St competitions Ballarat all over again".

Courtesy of Judith Williams.


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