Poison Gas Attack

The Western Front, 1915

Tags : , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

As 1914 faded and 1915 began, the hope that ‘it will all be over by Christmas’ rang a little hollow. In fact, almost all of the Regular Army had been wiped out in the battles of the autumn and early winter of 1914. Despite this, optimism remained high for the early part of 1915; Kitchener’s volunteer […]

Read more
Kaiser Wilhelm II

Kaiser Wilhelm II (1859-1941)

Tags :

The grandson of Queen Victoria, Wilhelm became Emperor of Germany in June 1888. He soon dismissed the ‘Iron Chancellor’ Otto Von Bismarck and Germany embarked on the creation of strong military forces. During the First World War, Wilhelm’s influence subsided and power devolved, essentially, into the hands of his generals. By the end of the […]

Read more
Herbert Asquith

Herbert Asquith (1852-1928)

Tags : ,

A barrister by trade, Asquith rose quickly in the Liberal party, becoming Prime Minister in 1908. Britain’s entry into the Great War gave Asquith even more troubles in an already difficult period of office, plagued by Home Rule and Liberal Reforms. A coalition government was formed, but Asquith found himself blamed for the failed assaults […]

Read more
Christmas at the Front, 1914

The Christmas Truce

Tags :

Despite the stalemate, the war was initially fought in a ‘gentlemanly’ manner. For example, if one had to launch a bombardment, one would try to avoid mealtimes, when men would gather together, to limit the number of casualties. This attitude continued into the festive season, by which time, most had anticipated the war would already […]

Read more
Poppies in field at dusk

For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon

Tags : , ,

Date: September 1914 With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children, England mourns for her dead across the sea. Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit, Fallen in the cause of the free. Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres. There is music in the […]

Read more
Laurence Binyon

Laurence Binyon

Tags : , , , ,

Born in Lancaster on 10th August 1869, Laurence Binyon was the second of the nine children of Frederick and Mary Binyon, who both came from Quaker families and Frederick was the vicar of Burton-in-Lonsdale, Yorkshire. Laurence was awarded a scholarship to St Paul’s School, London and then went on to Trinity College, Oxford. He was […]

Read more
The Call by Jessie Pope

The Call by Jessie Pope

Tags : ,

This poem shares a similar theme with much of Pope’s other work, particularly Who’s for the Game? Here, she levels accusations of cowardice against those who choose not to enlist. She gives enlistment and fighting an air of jollity, which seems heartless and unrealistic but which was not uncommon at the beginning of the war.

Read more
Letters from the Trenches book cover

Letters from the Trenches – A Soldier of the Great War

Tags : , , , ,

by Bill Lamin Published by: Michael O’Mara Books Limited Price: £14.99 The death of the “Last Fighting Tommy” Harry Patch, has led to the genre of First World War diaries, letters and first-hand accounts receiving even greater attention in the media, in published book form and on the internet. This particular title has scored on […]

Read more
Lemonade

Just for fun…

Tags : , , , , , ,

The following recipes and household tip are taken from The ‘Allied Forces’ Cookery Book in aid of the Red Cross Fund – Ceylon, November 1917 and, although we have not tested them ourselves, we thought we would share them with you… Lemonade 3 large lemons 250g sugar 1 litre boiling water Peel the lemons very […]

Read more
War Cake

War Cake

Tags : , ,

This is a traditionally made boiled fruit cake, except that it contains no eggs. Sugar was rationed in January 1918, which would have made this recipe more difficult to produce. It has a very moist texture, full of rich, plump fruit making it a perfect un-iced Christmas cake. Ingredients: 300g dark brown sugar 480ml water […]

Read more