Remembering Alice Guy

Alice is one of seven female First World War casualties of Newport, South Wales, and one of the city’s heroines. My thanks go to Sylvia Mason who provided this article about Alice Guy and I am pleased to be able to bring her book – Every Woman Remembered: Daughters of Newport in the Great War – to your attention. Continue reading “Remembering Alice Guy”

“Who Won The War, And Why!”

Over a year ago, Kelvin Dakin very kindly sent me a scan of a souvenir copy of a humorous monologue written on 1st October 1918 which explains, “Who Won the War, and Why!!”. This seems an appropriate time to publish this vital document so, move over Wakefield, Moody and Palmer, the real reason for the allied victory can now be revealed!

Humorous Musical Monologue - "Who Won The War, And Why!!" Salonika, 1918. From the collection of Kelvin Dakin.Humorous Musical Monologue - "Who Won The War, And Why!!" Salonika, 1918. From the collection of Kelvin Dakin.
Humorous Musical Monologue - "Who Won The War, And Why!!" Salonika, 1918. From the collection of Kelvin Dakin.
Humorous Musical Monologue - "Who Won The War, And Why!!" Salonika, 1918. From the collection of Kelvin Dakin.
Humorous Musical Monologue - "Who Won The War, And Why!!" Salonika, 1918. From the collection of Kelvin Dakin.
Humorous Musical Monologue - "Who Won The War, And Why!!" Salonika, 1918. From the collection of Kelvin Dakin.

In addition to the scan, which was brought home by Kelvin’s grandfather, he also provided some biographical details of Private Sweetapple of the GHQ Concert Party who performed the monologue. This really was his name, although he sounds like a character from one of the Salonika pantomime.

Private George Lawrence (Laurie) Sweetapple was born on 5th September 1888 in Lamorbey, Kent. In 1911 he was working as a bookbinder and living with his parents in New Cross. He served with the 1st County of London Yeomanry and after the war he started – or continued – a career on the stage with Grossmith and Laurillards Entertainers, London. Laurie moved to New Zealand in about 1927 and continued a successful career as a stage act and later a voice-over artist with the New Zealand Film Unit. Kelvin has found a cutting from October 1928 for the Grand Opera House, Wellington, announcing ‘Dorrie and Laurie’:

… who will entertain you with two ukes and a few songs …

Dorrie was Doris Nation who would become Laurie’s wife.

My thanks go to Kelvin for allowing me to reproduce this wonderful document, a reminder of the lighter side of the campaign.

Remembering CQMS Michael Margiotta of 12 Corps Cyclist Battalion

One hundred years ago today, Serjeant Michael Margiotta died of dysentery and pneumonia in Salonika. He is buried in the CWGC Lembet Road Military Cemetery.

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Remembering 5769 Private Joseph Devine, ACC

In April 2017 a post about the Army Cyclist Corps in Macedonia prompted a response from Kevin MacDermot who was researching his great uncle, 5769 Private Joseph Devine of 16th Corps Cyclist Battalion, Army Cyclists Corps (formerly 10623, Royal Irish Fusiliers).

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Away from the Western Front Conference : 30th October 2018

On the centenary of the Mudros Armistice, which marked the end of the First World War in the Middle East against the Ottoman Empire, we are delighted to be holding a conference reflecting on the often-overlooked campaigns which took place all over the world between 1914 and 1918.

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Celebrating Norfolk Day : a Salonika connection

Having lived in Norfolk for just 28 years I am still an ‘incomer’ but, even so, I would like to celebrate the very first ‘Norfolk Day’ of my adopted county. The challenge, then, is to find a Norfolk connection although this is by no means obvious as you won’t find the Norfolk Regiment – a fine county regiment – in the BSF’s order of battle. Continue reading “Celebrating Norfolk Day : a Salonika connection”

Remembering 180629 Sapper Harry Ernest Wilkinson, Royal Engineers

Some months ago the Society was contacted by Harry Wilkinson’s granddaughter who wanted to know more about his war service. Little is know about it, except that ‘he fought both against and later with the Bulgarians’ and ended up in Constantinople. Happily, he returned home safely.

Continue reading “Remembering 180629 Sapper Harry Ernest Wilkinson, Royal Engineers”