What a scorcher!

Are you enjoying the hot weather? I don’t mind it hot as long as I can sit in the shade and not do anything! When it is particularly hot I often think about the BSF and the trials of putting up with hot weather – day after day – along with the dust and flies and having to dig or lug around ammunition boxes and stores or maybe a Lewis gun. Continue reading “What a scorcher!”

Red Castle, Yellow Castle …

I am a member of just two military societies, the SCS – of course – and The Friends of the Suffolk Regiment. The latter on account of my grandfather who served with the Regiment from 1906 until 1914, when he volunteered for the newly created Army Cyclist Corps. The latest issue of the Friends’ Gazette (No. 16, March 2020 pp6-7) touches on the Macedonian campaign, so I thought I would share this with you and explore further an inconsequential – but to me entirely fascinating – piece of military ephemera, which follows on very nicely from my previous post on slouch hats in Salonika.

Continue reading “Red Castle, Yellow Castle …”

22 April 1915 at 5pm: Gas!

From Before Endeavours Fade, by Rose E. B. Coombs, MBE (An After the Battle Publication).

[Steenstraat], lying amid the rich fields, was at the western end of the French line on April 22 1915. Their line ran eastwards to a point south of Poelcappelle where it joined the sector held by the Canadian Corps with the British 27th and 28th Divisions beyond them east of Zonnebeke and Polygon Wood.

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NEW BOOK : “So once more it was bundle and go!”

The New Mosquito of September 2016 contained a fascinating article entitled ‘4034 Trooper James Scott Anderson, 1/2 Scottish Horse’. Written by Ann Walker -James’s daughter – it contains an account of his service as a scout in Macedonia from 1916 to 1918. What makes it especially remarkable is that this detailed narrative was written from memory many years later. If, on finishing that article, you wanted to hear more from James, then I have good news for you …

Continue reading “NEW BOOK : “So once more it was bundle and go!””

Faces of Salonika : Somerset Miners

This rather small and tatty picture – another eBay purchase – shows a group of men sitting on a quayside, which may be Salonika. The mixture of service dress (as worn in the UK and on the Western Front) with a sun helmet would certainly be appropriate for men of the BSF after about mid-1916. The extremes of the Macedonian climate make all sorts of combinations of dress possible which, for me, is one of the fascinations of the campaign. Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : Somerset Miners”

Faces of Salonika : Corporal Sidney James Robinson, 4/KRRC

Further to my centenary post of 18 December – Remembering Corporal Sidney Robinson, KRRC, and comrades who died one hundred years ago – I am delighted to have heard from Sidney’s grandson, Mark Robinson, again. Continue reading “Faces of Salonika : Corporal Sidney James Robinson, 4/KRRC”