Drowned close to shore: the loss of two American Troopships in 1918

Drowned close to shore: the loss of two American Troopships in 1918

In 1918 the small island of Islay off the west coast of Scotland would witness the full brunt of the…

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From Munich Trench to Ziggy Stardust

From Munich Trench to Ziggy Stardust

One of the frequently ‘bypassed’ places on the Somme Battlefield is the Redan Ridge. Scorching in su…

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Shackleton’s Pall Bearer

Shackleton’s Pall Bearer

William Sandison, oldest of eight children, was born on the 4th of January, 1898.  His post-war expe…

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The Munitionette’s First Heavy Shell. The Struggle to produce Munitions 1915 to 1918 by John Hughes-Wilson

The Munitionette’s First Heavy Shell. The Struggle to produce Munitions 191…

If, in modern warfare, fuel is the blood of victory, then munitions – in all their varied forms – ar…

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War Art with David Cohen

War Art with David Cohen

The late David Cohen made a huge contribution to The Western Front Association during his lifetime…

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Alcohol in the trenches: the rum ration

Alcohol in the trenches: the rum ration

The daily rum ration to British troops has its roots in the British Navy, dating back to the mid 17t…

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Victor McLaglen : prize fighter, Middlesex Regiment, Oscar winning actor of the silent era and talkies

Victor McLaglen : prize fighter, Middlesex Regiment, Oscar winning actor of…

The life story of Victor McLaglen reads like a film script. Victor was born on 11 December 1883 i…

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Turkey for Christmas Dinner, 1915

Turkey for Christmas Dinner, 1915

Christmas Day in the front line trenches was (with the possible – partial – exception of 1914) likel…

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The Short, Sad Military Career of Thomas Adams by John Bourne

The Short, Sad Military Career of Thomas Adams by John Bourne

My collaborator in compiling a Roll of Honour for Burslem, Mick Rowson, was recently attempting to m…

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Robert ‘Bobbie’ Loraine M.C.  :  Actor-Airman

Robert ‘Bobbie’ Loraine M.C. : Actor-Airman

The once-renowned Robert ‘Bobbie’ Lorraine is now an obscure figure. Born on 14 January 1876 in N…

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Mervyn Johns, First World War RFC Pilot and film actor

Mervyn Johns, First World War RFC Pilot and film actor

Mervyn Johns was born on 18 February 1899 at Pembroke. He was a medical student at a London Hosp…

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John Laurie : Shakespearean actor and Private Fraser in the BBC's Dads Army

John Laurie : Shakespearean actor and Private Fraser in the BBC's Dads Army…

John Laurie was born 25 March 1897 in Dumfries and was destined to be an architect before the Great …

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