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  #1  
Old 5th September 2023, 18:50
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Young soldiers

1914 - 1918 .

Young soldiers just signed up at St Merryn , near Padstow . Cornwall .
The vehicle is a horse carriage.

my Grandad was one of them , As a teenager he lived on a farm at St Merryn
and could handle Shire Horses so the Army put him in the Horse Artillery

Those cottages are still there on the main coast road from Newquay to Padstow .

He ended up in YPRES . one of the worst wars

Tony

39121294_10216307403667271_610759330337128448_o.jpg

Last edited by OLDGIT77; 25th September 2023 at 17:49.
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Old 6th September 2023, 09:11
Harry Nicholson United Kingdom Harry Nicholson is offline
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My dad joined up one month after the opening in 1914. He was a ship rivetter, so they put him in the horse artillery. He was the battle of Ypres. Was wounded on the Somme. After recovery, he was shipped to Salonika to face the Bulgars and dysentery and malaria. His advice when he saw me off to my first ship in 1956: Don't play cards on railway trains, and don't go with women who want your money - and most important: never be a volunteer.
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Old 6th September 2023, 11:59
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The 1914-18 War changed a lot of lives, and I wouldn't be here if my Australian Grandfather hadn't got wounded somewhere on the Western Front and met and married his nurse in hospital in England. Another chap who became my Great Uncle was an Englishman who emigrated to South Africa in 1913. He was a surveyor by profession and went to work for South African Railways. (He also at a later date did the preliminary surveys for the Kariba Dam project.)He was also a semi-professional footballer who had played for Clapton Orient, (now Orient ex Leyton Orient) and joined West Ham United for the 1912 season. He volunteered at the start of the War and was allocated to the South African Heavy Artillery and his batallion supported the Royal Artillery regiments on the Western Front. His wound cost him one of his legs, and he ended up in the same hospital as my future grandad. He married my Grandma's older sister. I never met him, but did meet his widow when she returned to England after his passing in around 1960.
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Old 6th September 2023, 13:10
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My Grandad was also a competent horseman and was also put into the Horse Artillery. None of his mates who went into the infantry survived the war. Do I detect a common theme here?
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Old 6th September 2023, 13:29
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Paternal grandfather (dying of TB in 1932) served throughout as serjeant (I think established in that rank from the outset by dint of service in the Cambridge University OTC) in the Royal Fusiliers 'Kensingtons' and offered his services to their Old Comrades Association until forced to retire. Also a stalwart for the Serpentine swimming club. Maternal grandfather (Barber) also served, Ma claimed as 'Cavalry Officer' sadly don't know much about him.
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Old 6th September 2023, 16:05
Ted Else United Kingdom Ted Else is offline
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Does the vehicle, in the background look out of place for the date??
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Old 6th September 2023, 17:23
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The vehicle looks like a Brougham carriage.
I can clearly see the front windows and the carriage lamps either side, I can just about make out the driver’s box behind the crowd. I can’t see any horses though.
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Old 6th September 2023, 18:47
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Grandfathers in the Great War:
My paternal Gf - Sgt Major in the 24th Middlesex Rifle Volunteers aka Post Office Rifles. He was retired from the Army and was a Postmaster at Enfield wash. So, co-opted into part time training of recruits.
My maternal Gf - Officer in the Scots Guards, (hence Mum was born at the Tower of London!) when war broke out they were shifted to Hyde Park where he also trained recruits for the front.
Wife's maternal Gf - Sergeant in the Royal Garrison Artillery and was with the BEF manning the big guns. He was killed at the first Battle of Ypres.
Wife's paternal Gf - Not sure but I believe he spent the war defending Gibraltar.
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Old 6th September 2023, 20:38
Makko Mexico Makko is offline
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My great grandfather (mother's side) was a haulier and cartier, out of a stable adjacent to the Penny Bridge (entrance to Bidston Dock, for those who know the Wallasey/B'head Docks). Hence, my grandfather had a huge collection of horse brasses and always had an affinity for cart/shire horses.

My great grandfather served in WW1 in a transport regiment, given his civilian specialty. He made it to Sgt. and survived the war. after being shipped back to England, he was posted somewhere in the North East and, when leave came due, he returned to Wallasey to be with his family. Unfortunately, he came down sick on leave and died. It would appear that he was a victim of Spanish Flu, given the symptoms mentioned in a newspaper report on his untimely death. He received a military funeral, his coffin being carried on a gun carriage, to Rake Lane Cemetery in Wallasey. The upkeep of his grave is the responsibility of the War Graves Commission. My mother (RIP) never knew of this story until my grandmother died and she was clearing out her house. As she picked up a book stored in a sideboard, a press cutting fell out. The article related to the funeral procession and included a photograph showing her father and uncle, young lads not in their teens yet, marching behind the gun carriage.

Rgds.
Dave
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Old 7th September 2023, 12:15
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My paternal Grandfather Robert Vart was an engineer in Swan Hunters Wallsend shipyard prior to WW1, he attested with the Naval reserves on the outbreak of war - but then went to sea with the MN as 3rd engineer in 1915, his first ship - SS Tergestea was mined (and sank) off Aldeburgh Head February 1916, thankfully he survived both the sinking and the war and remained at sea with the MN until the mid 1950's. Roberts older brother William Brett was a Joiner at Hawthorne Leslies shipyard before the war and joined the Royal Engineers as a Sapper in 1915 (due to his trade I guess), he was gassed in 1918 while serving with the Yorkshire Regt at the Battles of the Somme and was shipped home for demob due to his injuries.

On my maternal side, my grandfather Joseph was a riveter (Swan Hunters Walker shipyard), he and his younger brother Arthur had joined the Territorials (1/5th Northumberland Fusiliers) in 1913, he as a Pvt, Arthur as a Farrier in the same company, they were shipped to Flanders in early 1915 and almost immediately involved in the Battles at Ypres, where Joseph was wounded (Gunshot to the head) at the Battle of St Julien, he later transferred to the Machine Gun Corps (attached the the NF) the regiment and both brothers took an active part in most of the big battles in Flanders/France throughout the war and thankfully survived (in body - although not in mind), although Arthur was badly injured in 1916 (Gunshot wounds to the head, chest and back) while taking part in a Trench raid near Dickebusch.

In addition to the Ypres Battles, they both had active participation in 1st and second battles of the Somme (1916 and 1918), Battles of Arras 1917, Battles for Lys, The Hindenburg Line and Picardy in 1918 - where Joseph earned himself an MM for bravery.

They both were demobbed in 1919, but according to my Grandmother - Joe was mentally ruined after his 4 years in Flanders and sadly resorted to the drink when he got back into the shipyards in 1919 (despite being a churchgoer and abstinent prior to going overseas), he died 11 years before I was born 1950 so I never got to meet him - much to my regret, as he was apparently quite a character.

Joseph discarded his 4 medals after the war (still unmounted and boxed apparently) - no doubt disgusted and disillusioned after his experiences - maybe making a few quid in the process.

Like many men who went through similar ordeals, he never spoke to anyone about his experiences, not even to his closest confidante my Grandmother Jane (his wife).

That war and the Spanish Flu certainly destroyed so many lives both directly and indirectly.
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