Faces of Salonika : Edward Gallon

My thanks go to Edward’s grandson, David , not just for contacting me about Edward’s story and sending some splendid photos to share here, but also for his great patience. I’m ashamed to say that he first got in touch in early 2018 and only now have I published this! I know there are others out there who have submitted material to me so, I hope that this will reassure you – I may be slow but I will get there in the end!

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Sandham Memorial Chapel (NT) has re-opened to visitors

Given the size of the indoor spaces and in order to keep everyone safe, visits are limited to one ‘bubble’ per hour, so capacity is very limited. All of the slots for the first week were taken within 24 hours of booking opening!

You can find more information on the Sandham Memorial Chapel website and they’ve put together a specific page of information about what to expect from a visit: Sandham Memorial Chapel indoor reopening information | National Trust.

Thanks to Property Operations Manager, Paul Grist, for keeping us informed about developments at Sandham.

Lieut. Harman Shanley, late 5th Connaught Rangers – an update

Nearly two years ago I published a post about an intriguing set of medals for sale on eBay, that had belonged to Lieut. Shanley of 5/Connaught Rangers. In addition to ‘Pip, Squeak and Wilfred’, there were also US and French Second World War medals. What was especially interesting for me, was that the British War Medal had a long list of unofficial bars, from the Battle of Kosturino onwards.

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Great War Hats … and Huts!

Back in May I added two posts which largely focused on the slouch hats worn by members of the BSF during the warmer weather of 1916. Whilst I don’t want to overdo military headgear – not everyone finds the subject as fascinating as I do – I want to draw your attention to a fascinating video on the subject. Being able to recognise the headwear of a First World War soldier can be useful in helping to date a photo of a soldier, even if their intrinsic interest is a mystery to you!

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World Refugee Day: Faces of Salonika

Today is World Refugee Day.  Refugees and displaced persons have always been a feature of war and the Salonika campaign was no exception. There were refugees from earlier conflicts in the Balkans, the ongoing hostilities and the devastating fire which destroyed much of Salonika in 1917. Continue reading “World Refugee Day: Faces of Salonika”

Free access to National Archives digital records

If you have the extra time and inclination for researching the Salonika campaign you may find this news from The National Archives of interest:

We are making digital records available on our website free of charge for as long as our Kew site is closed to visitors.

Registered users will be able to order and download up to ten items at a time, to a maximum of 50 items over 30 days. The limits are there to try and help manage the demand for content and ensure the availability of our digital services for everyone.

Find out more at The National Archives website.

Entrance to a house used as a staff mess, possibly in the village of Guvesne where British Salonika Force Advanced Headquarters was located from 1916. THE MACEDONIAN CAMPAIGN, 1915-1918 Entrance to a house used as a staff mess, possibly in the village of Guvesne where British Salonika Force Advanced Headquarters was located from 1916. THE MACEDONIAN CAMPAIGN, 1915-1918 (click on the image to see full size) © IWM (Q 31609)

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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