Search results for 1915.

104: September 2015 Special Edition


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The Generals. John Terraine's 1982 Address to The Western Front Association


 [This piece, a transcript of John Terraine's 1982 address, first appeared in Stand To! No. 7 Spring 1983 pp.4- 7] IMAGE (Photo: IWM Q9689) Haig and his Army Commanders at Cambrai, 11 November 1918. First and second rows, left to right: Plumer (Second Army), Byng (Third Army), Haig, Birdwood (Fifth Army), Rawlinson (Fourth Army), Horne (First A…

The Coldstream Guards and Irish Guards at Cuinchy 1915


Cuinchy is a village astride the La Bassée Canal and is referred to by Robert Graves in his classic memoir Goodbye to All That: 'Cuinchy bred rats. They came up from the canal, fed on the plentiful corpses, and multiplied exceedingly. While I stayed here with the Welsh, a new officer joined the company... When he turned in that night, he heard a s…

9 May 1915: Jacques Eugène Valfort


Jacques was in preparation for his compulsory military service when war broke out in 1914. Called up into the 17th Infantry Regiment at Epinal in September 1914, he was soon serving at the front and, by the end of 1914 was located in the Artois sector where he was to remain for his entire service. Jacques was killed in action during the int…

6 July 1916 : Urbain Pierre Rieucau


Urbain was a farmer before the war.  Having completed his compulsory military service at Rodez in 1911, Urbain was immediately recalled upon the declaration of war and was in action at the Battle of Morhange in August 1914 - Morhange being an area of France annexed by the Germans in 1871. The remainder of the year saw Urbain in action on th…

Postponed : 8th President's Conference - Theme '1915 Revisited'


Given current situation with spread of coronavirus the President's Conference will be postponed until further notice. The welfare of delegates and speakers is uppermost in our thoughts.  Speakers:    Aimee Fox : 'To Gallipoli and Back Again: Learning lessons between theatres, Gallipoli and the Western Front, 1915-1916'? Aimee Fox This talk fo…

31 January 1915: Pte Henry Arthur Nicholls


Son of James Nicholls. He was educated Highfield Road School and initially worked as a machinist.  29 June 1913 he married Helen (née Ware) at St.Stephen's Church, Walworth. They lived at 178, Westmoreland Road, Walworth.  Henry enlisted 30 June 1910 in the Coldstream Guards. Come the war Henry was called up and went to the Front with his…

Ep. 159 – The 2nd Inniskillings at Festubert, 1915 – Michael Nugent


Michael Nugent talks about his recent book into the 2nd Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers at the 1915 Battle of Festubert. This is published by Reveille Press. 

A Tragedy at Glamis Castle 1915


In 1915 an R.F.C. aeroplane, crewed by two newly-qualified pilots, crashed in the grounds of Glamis Castle in Scotland, witnessed by a teenage girl who went on to become a Queen and, later, Queen Mother.  Here we look at the story behind that fatal accident. The Castle and the Bowes-Lyon Family Glamis Castle (below), sometimes described as Scotla…

The Yorkshire Landings at Suvla


It is often thought that the first time the volunteers raised by Lord Kitchener went into action was at the Battle of the Somme in July 1916. Whilst this was the first time in the Great War that Kitchener’s men had been used in large numbers, their first action took place nearly a year earlier. The ‘Lancashire Landing’ at Gallipoli is very well kn…

Virtual Battlefield Tour #2: The Battle for Scimitar Hill, 1915


We are absolutely delighted to announce the details of the first six Virtual Battlefield Tours, commissioned exclusively for Western Front Association members from Battle Guide Virtual Tours. As previously described, these are 'immersive', interactive 'virtual' tours combining modern technology with original and current audio and video content to g…

The First Phosgene Attack on British Troops : 19 December 1915


The first use of phosgene gas against British troops by the German army took place on 19 December 1915. The gas attack took place north of Ypres where the 49th (West Riding) Division was in the line. This attack had been ‘given away’ when a German prisoner had been interrogated. As a result an artillery barrage on the German trenches was ordered o…

The Battle of Neuve Chapelle 1915


Despite the disappointments in the opening months of the First World War when the idea that "It will be over By Christmas" met with the reality of modern warfare 1915 began with optimism. The commander of the British Expeditionary Force, Field Marshal Sir John French, was convinced that a major effort would bring about an early victory. To this end…

How Far was the Shells Crisis of 1915 Exploited by David Lloyd George for his own Political Gain?


[This article is by 17-year old Jack Moyse and is based on his essay which was the runner-up for the Colin Hardy Memorial Prize. Jack is still (in 2021) a pupil at Portsmouth Grammar School.] There is no doubt that a national crisis like a war, or a pandemic like the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, places immense pressure on politicians to perform and …

Tom Roberts’ Letters Home 1915


Tom Roberts was born in Llanelli in South Wales, attended Park Street School, the Higher Grade School and the Intermediate School there and went on to be a student at, what was then, University College Aberystwyth. He was appointed as a primary school teacher in London and was due to start teaching in September 1914 but never took up the post. He h…

ONLINE: A Reappraisal of 1915 - a virtual conference


The conference will be live and online. It will be held on Saturday 1 May and split into two sessions the first starting at 10am and running to approximately 12 noon, the second from 2pm to approximately 4pm. There will be new talks which examine how the BEF learned to deal with the challenges of an expanding war. The event is free, but if anyon…

Captain Thorold A. Stewart-Jones at Aubers Ridge 9 May 1915


Son of Edward and Emily Pauline Stewart-Jones. (Born 10 July 1873 in Liverpool) A barrister of the Inner Temple, Thorold moved to Lewes in 1908 when his mother had bought Southover Grange. At the 1911 Census, the widowed matriarch Mrs Emily-Pauline Stewart-Jones lived at Southover Grange with son’s family, her daughter-in-law Mrs Eva-Joan Stew…

Letters from a Volunteer by Charles St.G Cook


[This review first appeared in Stand To! No.12 Winter 1984]  Charles St.G Coook 1914 Letters from a Volunteer. Ed. with intro, edited by Don Cook. 40pp., pbk £1.95 (post paid). (Copies can be found for £4 in 2021) Copy 15 of 500 shown here.  Despite the huge output of books relating to the Great War there are still many aspects of the confli…

Kitchener's Mob: The New Army to the Somme by Peter Doyle and Chris Foster


The History Press, 2016, £25.00  224pp, colour and monochrome ills throughout, bibliog., notes and refs. ISBN: 9–780–750–964–951 [This review first appeared in Stand To! No.108 January 2017] This is far from the first book about Kitchener’s 5.7 million strong new armies. The story is old and well known; since the publication of the immensely p…

Ep.220 – Recruiting and training the RFC – David Spruce


Doctoral candidate David Spruce talks to me about his research into Recruiting and Training the Royal Flying Corps during the Great War. Your browser does not support the audio element. David Spruce looks at the recruitment and training me…

VIRTUAL BATTLEFIELD TOUR 'To Bite and to Hold' The Royal Naval Division at Krithia, 1915'


This is a reminder that we have just published the first in a brand new series of Virtual Battlefield Tours. These tours are part of our commitment to adding value to the overall membership package.This tour will concentrate on the Royal Naval Division's actions at Krithia during the 1915 battles on the peninsula.  The tour is absolutely free to m…

Virtual Tour #2: Aubers 1915. Deadlock, Disappointment and Disaster in Flanders


The second of the new season of 'Virtual Tours' is now available.  Essentially, Aubers was a one day battle, in the form of a pincer attack at Richebourg in support of the French attacks at Vimy and Notre Dame de Lorette.  Described as both  an “unmitigated disaster” and “a serious disappointment” by the Official Historians,  100 years on we find …

A brief clip from our 'Virtual Tour #1': The Royal Naval Division at Krithia 1915


Due to overwhelming demand 'on the night' there was a degree of buffering on the initial 'Virtual Tour'. This was quickly fixed at the time, and the hour-long tour remains available for members to watch via the 'members log-in'. This can be seen without any technical 'gremlins' and has received excellent feedback. Please keep an eye out for news of…

ONLINE VIRTUAL TOUR #2 'Aubers 1915': Deadlock, Disappointment and Disaster in Flanders


This digital virtual tour of the Aubers battlefield will 'go live' on 16 December 2021 at 7.30pm UK time. (There is no pre-registration for this event) Focusing more on the southern attack that took place in 1915, Tour Guide and Historian Julian Whippy will take you across the rather flat virtual battlefields and explain some of the reasons for t…

126: April 2022


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“The War on the Wire – The story of signalling in the Gallipoli Campaign” - Clive Harris


  We welcome Clive Harris back to Hornchurch for his most recent talk about Gallipoli. Clive is well known to WFA members through the Battle Honours tour company. Before this and a spell in the Hertfordshire Police, Clive spent several years in the Army, specifically with the Royal Corps of Signals.  This talk therefore combines his professional …

Branch Event: 'Jig-a-jig Tommy'


Bruce Cherry is an author, tour guide and former university lecturer with a PhD in military history. Amongst other titles is his book ’They Didn't Want to Die Virgins; a study of Sex and Morale on the Western Front'. Bruce’s talk includes the British Army’s attitude toward sex, the soldier’s moral code, army morale, and the sexual lives of troops o…

The Empire strikes back – The battles of Trekkopjes & Gibeon 1915 - James White


For most of the campaign in South West Africa the German Schutztruppe spent their time retreating but on two notable occasions they took to the offensive. With modern day battlefield photographs this is the tale of the two battles one of which saw Rolls Royce armoured cars going in action.

‘Private G/5203 Frank Smith (A jolly good chap!) with Steve Smith


This talk looks at the service of Steve's Great Grandfather who served with the Buffs in the Great War. He saw action at Loos and served around Plugstreet Wood before moving to the Somme in July 1916 where he was wounded on 18 August 1916. He then served with the Labour Corps until being pronounced fit to go back to the infantry where he was killed…