Search results for First World War.

Causes of War


A range of materials for mixed ability classes, for year 7, 8 and 9. Right click to save documents. If you have any resources you wish to share, please let us know!  Document Title Focus Format  Causes of War Explosive Barrels  The different causes of war each represented as a barrel of gunpowder. Can the students …

The Gallipoli Oak: A Story of a Family’s Unique Legacy to a Lancashire Fusilier by Dr Martin Purdy


PLEASE NOTE DATE CHANGE  - NOW 17 JAN In March 1922 a Lancashire businessman stepped from a cruise ship onto the Gallipoli peninsula. He was accompanied by a host of other pilgrims equally as desperate to visit this Mediterranean outpost as he and his wife, but what made James Duckworth stand out was the fact that he stepped ashore with a bucket o…

'Military Mining And The La Boiselle Project' with Colin Winn


Join us for a fascinating talk on Military Mining and the La Boiselle Project by Colin Winn Colin Winn is a retired weapons engineer specialising in the underground conflict.  He is a founder member of the Hawthorn Ridge Crater Association and is interested in the work of the 252 Tunnelling Company in the sector.   Colin will bring relevant artef…

They Called It A Town For Four Winters


Join us for an interesting and well illustrated talk by Mark Price entitled "They Called It A Town For Four Winters. This talk will cover the history of the two training camps on Cannock Chase during the First World War, Brocton Camp and Rugeleley Camp. Brocton Camp included a prisoner of war camp and there was also a hospital nearby. Mike will …

'The Knutsford Lads Who Never Came Home!' a talk by Tony Davies


Join us for an interesting talk by Tony Davies about the lads from the village of Knutsford in Cheshire who never came home in the First World War. Based on his research into the men commemorated on the Knutsford War Memorial, and his book 'The Knutsford Lads Who Never Came Home', this well illustrated talk will give us a detailed insight into the…

POSTPONED : 'Hartelebury V.A.D.' a talk by Doug Smith


This event is now scheduled for 8 January 2021 In the First World War many hundreds of houses were converted into hospitals to help cope with the many thousands of wounded.  When the War ended these houses were closed and the vast amount of records of the patients and nurses who were at these hospitals, destroyed.  Not so Hartlebury VAD Hospital i…

CANCELLED : 'Aftermath' a talk by Professor John Derry


Due to the Coronavirus, all meetings have been postponed or cancelled until further notice. Please check with us before venturing out to an advertised event.  We are delighted to welcome Professor Derry for another talk on the First World War. On this occasion he will cover the events which took place following the Armistice on 11 November1918 and…

Trapped Behind the Lines: Stories of British Soldiers on the Run


Hedley Malloch will be giving a talk which will look at British soldiers trapped behind the lines in France and Belgium. Please join us for our first Branch meeting of the year.

Entente Cordially - Paul Handford


Join us for a fascinating talk by Paul Handford on the little-known subject of the British Volunteers serving in the French Army in the Vosges Mountains.

The talk is the result of his detailed research and visiting the Vosges and highlight this unique and well-preserved area.


The Vosges

Lessons of the Hundred Days - Amiens to the Armistice - Dr. Simon Peaple


Join us for a fascinating talk by Dr Simon Peaple on lessons learned during the Last Hundred Days Campaign during the Advance from the Battle of Amiens in  8 August 1918 to the Armistice on 11 November 1918.    

The Eitel Fritz Farm Raid


We welcome Douglas Furn to present a talk about a specific raid at Eitel Fritz Farm, in the Ypres Salient, in which a family member participated. The talk will be in the bar area of the Village Hall in Hatfield Peverell.  As ever, the meeting is open to members and non-members of the WFA. Meet 7:30 for an 8pm start. There is a suggested entrance …

Grant Cullen - Steaming to the Front - Britain's Railways and the Great War


In this talk Grant Cullen will cover the very interesting subject of Britain's Railways and the Great War.

Members and non-members of The Western Front Association are equally welcome. Any new visitors are guaranteed a friendly atmosphere and a warm welcome from a group of like-minded enthusiasts. 

Richard Lloyd - 'Escapers All'


In this talk, Richard Lloyd will discuss the stories of officers and men who escaped from German captivity during 1914-1918.

Members and non-members of The Western Front Association are equally welcome. Any new visitors are guaranteed a friendly atmosphere and a warm welcome from a group of like-minded enthusiasts. 


Using the Red Cross Records as a Resource For Researching British Prisoners of War/George Henry Archer - The Story Behind a Postcard


Unfortunately Roger Penny will not be able to give his talk on the Battle of the Marne from the French perspective as previously advertised. Instead John Beech will be giving a talk on Prisoners of the First World War - Using The International Committee of the Red Cross Records as a Resource   Chris Preston will be giving a short talk on Georg…

Michael O’Brien - 'There were no neutrals in the Trenches'


In this talk Michael O'Brien will give an account of those American citizens who died fighting in the British Army during the Somme Campaign from July to November 1916. Members and non-members of The Western Front Association are equally welcome. Any new visitors are guaranteed a friendly atmosphere and a warm welcome from a group of like-minded e…

Tim Halstead - Public Schools and the Junior Officer Corps of 1916


In this talk Tim Halstead will discuss the Public Schools and Junior Officer Corps of 1916.

Members and non-members of The Western Front Association are equally welcome. Any new visitors are guaranteed a friendly atmosphere and a warm welcome from a group of like-minded enthusiasts. 


'They pay me to be an Admiral…' or 'The Escape of the Goeben'


Several months after her commissioning in 1912, Goeben, with the light cruiser Breslau, formed the German Mediterranean Division. After the outbreak of World War I  Goeben and Breslau bombarded positions in North Africa and then evaded British naval forces in the Mediterranean and reached Constantinople. The two ships were transferred to the Ottoma…

India's Great War by Dr Adam Prime


This talk looks at India's contribution to the First World War in every sense of the word. It takes in the huge recruitment boom. It also looks at the experiences of Indian soldiers (and their British officers) on the Western Front, in Gallipoli, in Mesopotamia and in the Middle East. Finally, it looks at India itself and the actions undertaken the…

The Fighting Fifth and the First Attack at Bellewaarde Ridge 16 June 1915 - John Beech


Unfortunately the planned talk about Lt-Gen Sir Thomas D'Oyly Snow by Andy Lonergan has been cancelled.   Instead we will have a talk by our Branch Chairman, John Beech, entitled 'The Fighting Fifth and the First Attack at Bellewaarde Ridge 16 June 1915' which covers the attack made by 1st Battalion Northumberland Fusiliers on this date.   Memb…

'Soldiers & Their Horses - Horses & Their Soldiers’ - Dr. Jane Flynn


This talk focuses on the Soldier-Horse Relationship, 1914-1918. The War Office may only have seen a homogenous mass of men and horses, of numbers killed and the cost of their replacement, but to their 'owners' the horses were as much a part of the life of their units as their fellow men. Many soldiers fervently believed it was their horses to whom …

Five RAF Indian Pilots of the Great War - Stephen Barker


This talk discusses five Indian pilots who served with the RFC / RAF during the Great War.Stephen will particularly focus on Hardit Singh Malik the subject of his book 'The Flying Sikh'. Hardit Singh Malik started his life in Britain as a 14 year old at Eastbourne College, who then  progressed to Balliol College, Oxford. At the start of the war h…

The Great War and Me - Paul Weaver


We welcome our own Paul Weaver to present a talk about his connections to the Great War. Paul had several members of his family served during the war and will be telling their stories. In addition, Paul is a key member of the 10th Essex Living History Group, a highly regarded organisation that portrays life as a "Tommy" that really focuses on educ…

Rick Smith - 'Hawthorn Ridge - Then and Now'. A Study.


This talk will give a history of the area from its early occupation, the plan and execution of the blowing of the mine on 1st July 1916 and its filming by Geoffrey Malins. We look at some of the participants involved on that famous (and infamous) day. The subsequent second blow in November and the successful capture of Beaumont Hamel. Studies that …

Roy Larkin - 'Repairs and Maintenance on the Western Front'


This talk outlines how the growing number of motor vehicles were kept roadworthy and working during the Great War. Members and non-members of The Western Front Association are equally welcome. Any new visitors are guaranteed a friendly atmosphere and a warm welcome from a group of like-minded enthusiasts. 

Stuart Hadaway - 'Sinai Campaign 1916'


Based in part on Stuart's book 'Pyramids and Fleshpots: The Egyptian, Senussi and Eastern Mediterranean Campaigns, 1914-16', this talk looks in detail at the realities of desert warfare and campaigning, covering the action at Qatia, the Battle of Romani, and the actions at Rafah and El Magdhaba. Members and non-members of The Western Front Associa…

Dr Scott Lindgren - 'A Series of Unfortunate Events: the Battle of Coronel, 1914'


Scott will be making a welcome return to the branch and giving us a further talk on the 1914 naval campaign. On 1 November the German East Asia Squadron would be met by a small squadron of Royal Navy cruisers under Christopher Craddock, with a heavy defeat for the British force. This talk examines the engagement, its background and surrounding circ…

Rodney Attwood - 'General Lord Rawlinson in the First World War'


This talk is based on Rodney's research for his biography of Rawlinson (General Lord Rawlinson: From Tragedy to Triumph) Rawlinson won praise from historians of the Western Front, such as C R M F Cruttwell, particularly for 4th Army's role in 'The Hundred Days' of 1918. A former colleague wrote on his death in 1925, 'His loss to the Army is absolut…

Martyn Watkinson - ‘Gassed’ - The Story behind the Painting by John Singer Sargent


Martyn is a new speaker on the circuit and has a particular interest in art and how it shaped people's perceptions of the Great War.In this talk, Martyn will take a detailed look at 'Gassed' painted by John Singer Sargent and which was finished in March 1919 and was voted picture of the year by the Royal Academy of Arts. It is now held by the Imper…

Ross Beadle - ‘The Origins of the Schlieffen Plan: German War Planning up to July 1914'


This talk will consider how 'If you make a false premise at the very beginning, it really doesn’t matter how relentlessly logical you are thereafter the whole edifice is built on sand'. That is the story of German war planning. And to complicate the history further, once 44 years of work has gone belly up, as it did in 1914, those responsible have …

Mark Rowe - ‘August 1914: England in Peace and War'


Mark's talk is based on his book 'August 1914: England in Peace and War' As the watershed month when England went from peace to war, it's an ideal place and time to take stock of the country. How happy and united was it, how did people react to war? Were the suffragette, trade union and socialist and Irish home rulemovements as important as some fe…

Dr. Jane Flynn - ‘A Weapon in the Hands of the Allies’ The Remount Service and the AVC


Jane will be revisiting the branch to give the talk she had originally intended to give last year looking at how the supply of horses to the British Army was an unprecedented logistical and organisational enterprise, undergone at great expense, solely because military success depended on the versatility and endurance of the military horse. Members…

Dr. Michael LoCicero - ‘Discredit on those concerned: The German Trench Raid Near Loos, 5 January 1917 and the 'Duty of Dying'


In a welcome return to the branch, Michael will be reviewing his contribution to The Darkest Year: The British Army on the Western Front 1917 edited by Spencer Jones and which deals with a highly successful German trench raid at Loos in January 1917. Penetrating deep into the British position it resulted in the immediate sacking of a British battal…

'Voices From Three Crises: World War One, Covid-19 and Ukraine' - Dr Viv Newman


Viv Newman presents an overview of how three crises impacted on written culture.  The First World War led to an outpouring of literature, with professional and amateur writers and poets wielding their pens as they sought to make sense of a world that was irrevocably changing lives. Just over a century later, the Covid-19 pandemic had a similar effe…

A Concept Vindicated: The Battle of the Falkland Islands, 1914 - Scott Lindgren


In early 2023, Scott visited Ruddington to talk about the Battle of Coronel, and perhaps unwisely, offered to return to the branch and give his follow up talk on the Battle of the Falkland Islands 1914!Following Coronel, the Royal Navy dispatched three battlecruisers to hunt down the German East Asia Squadron. This lecture examines the engagement, …

Nobody Of Any Importance: A Foot Soldier's Memoir Of World War One - Phil Sutcliffe


Sam Sutcliffe grew up a poor boy in north London, enlisted at 16, fought on the front line at Gallipoli 1915, the Somme 1916, and Arras 1918 where he was taken prisoner. Somehow he stayed lucky, survived – and, in his seventies, he finally unleashed his remarkable near-total-recall memory and wrote it all down, childhood to demob.In this talk, his …

Bringing The Past To Life - Jason King


This is something a little different for our branch, but will hopefully help to provide an insight into how the Great War is taught to the current generation.Jason spent many years as a teacher and has developed a series of interactive workshops on the Great War which can be taught to both primary and secondary school age children to help develop a…

The 24th Infantry Brigade At Passchendaele - Martyn Watkinson


Martyn made his first visit to the branch in 2023 to give his talk on the painting 'Gassed' and has kindly agreed to return to give another talk on a subject of particular interest to him. This time, his talk will look at the 24th Infantry Brigade and it's involvement in the initial stages of the Third Battle of Ypres, and will in particular focus …

Rather A Big Bang - Nigel Crompton


Nigel will be making his first visit to the branch and his talk will look at munitions factory explosions and Health & Safety (or lack of it!) Talk includes Chilwell, Silvertown, Faversham, plus many others, and discusses medical issues, fire fighting and policing amongst many other themes. PLEASE NOTE: This meeting is the third Friday in the …

The First Air War - Grant Cullen


* Note this talk replaces the previously published talk. Grant Cullen from the Chesterfield Branch of the Western Front Association will be revisiting the branch to talk about 'The First Air War'. Grant's talk will look at various aspects of the first air war and he has advised me that the talk will include photographs which are not generally in…

William Robertson: Architect Of A Winning Strategy Or Merely Haig's 'Man Of Buisness In London'? - Ross Beadle


Ross made his last visit to the branch in 2023 to give his talk on The Origins of the Schlieffen Plan and has kindly agreed to return to give another talk on a subject of particular interest to him. This time, his talk will look at William Robertson. Robertson was the creator of the modern position of Chief of the Imperial General Staff, who impo…

The Invisible Corps - Roy Larkin


Roy will be making a return visit to Ruddington to talk his specialist subject, the Army Service Corps.

In this talk he will give a brief overview of the Army Service Corps 1914-18, revealing a story of evolution, passing the buck and meddling civilians!