The diary of Willaim Pearce – who served with a mechanical transport unit of the BSF – continues into 1918. My thanks to Mark Pearce.
Went to Karaburun by lorry, train and steamer, had a very good time bathing, concerts, sports, went on wreck of Norseman, been down 2½ years, 11000 tons, fine ship, went in Sologue, appointed L.C. [lance corporal] weather very hot, thunderstorms heavy, planes busy bombing, more troops come off plain, had dingy done first guard, good concert by K.O. at 16CC [?].
30 Sep 1918
Left camp at Snevci with advanced party for Roman Valley 2 Kilos from Lake Dorian, camped on ground which had been shelled in attack on Grand. Remains of British plane brought down on fire at back of camp, very bad roads, shelled, very busy with springs and tyres. Peace with Bulgaria.
3 Dec 1918
Went on board Agamemnon (5000 tons). Shipped cars and lorries, took in coal from collier Hamstead in Salonika Bay, left Friday evening (6th).
6 Dec 1918
Weather cold, arr entrance Darlingnells [Dardanelles!] evening.
7 Dec 1918
Good weather, anchored off island till daylight, went through Darlingnells.
8 Dec 1918
Weather much warmer, passed several wrecks, arrived off Constantinople morning Dec 9th, waited till daylight, Gabon went out in charge of 2 TBD. Went right through Con [Constantinople] harbour, passed about 12 large warships of 6 nations, British, French, Italy, Japan, Greek, Turk, several TBD of Allies. British flag ship Lord Nelson, fine ship, view of Constantinople from water very fine, got off cars and landed.
The Allied Fleet in the Bosphorus. THE OCCUPATION OF CONSTANTINOPLE, 1918-1923 (click image to see full size) © IWM (Q 14448)