Message from the Chair

Dear Members and Friends,

As I sit writing this over Easter, the world is in the grip of the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. I hope you and your families are keeping well and that you are getting used to the social and commercial lock-down that is currently in place. Like many of you, I’ve been working from home since mid-March and coming to terms with only seeing work colleagues, friends and family online. Thankfully we live in an age of remarkable communications technology enabling us to maintain instant contact across the globe from our living rooms. One can only imagine what the men and women of the BSF would have given for anything approaching this level of modern comms.

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NEW : A Salonika Campaign Bibliography

SCS member Keith Roberts has been compiling a list of books in English about the campaign. At present it is limited to books, so items from regimental journals and the like are not included. He has checked, amongst other things, the bibliographies in the better known books on the campaign and searched some online catalogues using key words.

A first version – with nearly 200 books listed – has been produced for review to make good any omissions. Once this review process is over we will make it available in a searchable format on this website – hopefully before the summer – with the expectation of providing occasional updates to capture further discoveries and new publications. This will be a valuable resource for anyone interested in this neglected campaign of the First World War.

If you think you might be able to add to this bibliography please contact Keith for a draft copy on  scsbiblio@gmail.com.

A photograph of a selection of books about the Salonika campaign

Missing SRA plaque

We have been contacted by Phil, a volunteer on the Imperial War Museum’s War Memorials Register Project.  They have a record of a memorial plaque that was placed in St John’s Church, Hanley, Staffordshire by the Salonika Reunion Association in memory of those who served and died in Salonika.

The church is now an antiques centre and Phil has spoken to the owner who has confirmed that the plaque is no longer there.  He said that a number of plaques were removed during the period when the church was closed.

A quick search of The Mosquitothe publication of the SRA  – has not revealed any mention of the church, the plaque or any dedication ceremony, so it remains a mystery. Does anyone out there know anything about the plaque? Please contact us if you do and we will pass the information onto Phil.

The Doiran Memorial.
The Doiran Memorial serves the dual purpose of a Battle Memorial of the British Salonika Force (for which a large sum of money was subscribed by the officers and men of that force), and a place of commemoration for more than 2,000 Commonwealth servicemen who died in Macedonia and whose graves are not known. The memorial was designed by Sir Robert Lorimer with sculpture by Walter Gilbert. It was unveiled by Sir George Macdonogh on 25 September 1926. It stands on Colonial Hill in northern Greece, overlooking the lake and town of Dojran in Northern Macedonia. Photo by the editor, March 2016.

2019 Field of Remembrance

For the first time ever I visited the Westminster Abbey Field of Remembrance. It was a moving experience to wander around all the plots, actually on the 11th, and a particular pleasure to see the one dedicated to the Salonika campaign. If you would like to remember someone in ‘our’ plot, watch out for the announcements in The New Mosquito, The New Balkan News or online here. Or you can contact us nearer the time.

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Annual meeting and a new patron for the SCS

Members will be pleased to learn that the Honourable Ann Straker – granddaughter of Field Marshal George Milne, 1st Baron Milne – has agreed to become Patron of the Society. This re-establishes the link between the SCS and the family of the BSF’s Commander-in-Chief.

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