A FIGHTING FAMILY.
Mrs Sansome, of 5 Gas Street, Rugby, has received official intimation that her son, Lance-Corpl George Barnet, of the 5th Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry, has been wounded in France, and posted as missing since September 25th last. Lance-Corpl Barnet was twice in hospital, first with wounds, and then with an attack of nerves, but returned to the trenches after recovery on each occasion. Mrs Sansome comes of a fighting family, and her two older sons are in the Army, one in the Coldstream Guards, and the other in the 7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment. Her husband and two other sons have attested under the Derby Scheme. She also has two brothers and two brothers-in-law fighting, and one of the latter, in the Australian contingent, has returned to France after recovery from wounds. Ten nephews of Mrs Sansome are with the colours, and one of these was sent to England, and, on recovery, drafted to the Dardanelles, where he was again wounded. Another nephew has also been wounded in the same sphere of operations.
ONLY ONE LEFT.
When the soldiers of the 87th Brigade were billeted in Rugby last spring, townspeople derived a great amount of pleasure from the concerts that were given in Caldecott Park by the bands attached to two of the regiments. Military bandsmen are as a rule fighting men as well as musicians, and are not exempt from service in the firing line ; consequently most of the gallant fellows who so willingly used their musical instruments to please their Rugby friends had to do their bit with rifle and bayonet when they got out to the Dardanelles. One of them, writing to a friend in Rugby, mentions several interesting incidents of the evacuation of Gallipoli. He says :—Our Brigade was in the centre of the firing line, and the two days before we left the Turks gave us plenty of shells all day long. We thought they had got wind of us leaving—they must have noticed that our heavy guns had gone, but the Royal Navy gave them “ What’oh!” with their 14-inch shells, and the Turks must have lost badly. When the time came we left in three parties, and things want off very well, the navy’s guns giving V and W beaches a shell or two about every half hour. We left all kinds of traps for the Turk, and I am sure he had a good laugh at some of the tricks we played him. I’ll bet they are glad to see the last of us. The weather was getting very bad for them.
We were all very sorry to have to leave so many of our friends who have given up their lives for good old England, but it could not be helped. The little bit of ground we had was getting flooded with the heavy rains, and the Turks had got more big guns along with plenty of shells, so that we were hardly ever out of fire, night as well as day. I do not think we could have lived on the rotten spot much longer. My idea is that they did the proper thing in evacuating the place.
The writer concludes :-Now as I am the only one left with the Regiment out of the band we had in Rugby, I must thank you for what you have done for us all.
LOCAL WAR NOTES.
News has been received that Pte Edwin A Piper, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, who has been missing since April 25th, 1915, was killed in action. Pte Piper, who was 27 years of age and a native of Caldmore, was employed in the machine room at Messrs Frost’s Printing Works.
Pte Tom Halliwell, R.A.M.C, of Murray Road, Rugby, who is at present near Salonika, in a letter to his brother states that he recently visited Salonika to get some petrol, and that the N.C.O in charge of the store was Sergt Geo Renshaw, captain of the Rugby Football Club.
The majority of the unattested single men in the Rugby Parliamentary Division, numbering between 500 and 600, have now received their Army Summons papers, and a small number presented themselves at the Drill Hall, Rugby, this week. Owing to exemptions and medically unfit men, however, the yield is not expected to be very great. Married attested men should take the opportunity now of joining departmental corps, because when their groups are under proclamation, they will not be able to do so.
RUGBY FARMERS’ MOTOR AMBULANCE.
Shortly after noon on Monday an interesting ceremony took place in Rugby Cattle Market, when the Motor Ambulance, purchased with part of the proceeds of the Farmers’ Red Cross Sale on Boxing Day, was formally handed over to the British Red Cross St John Ambulance Association. The car, which will accommodate eight sitting patients, or four stretcher cases, has been fitted up on absolutely the most modern principles. It is styled “ The Rugby District Farmers’ Red Cross Ambulance,” and next week will be in use in France. The ceremony was performed by Mr Arthur James, in the absence of Mrs James, who regretted her inability to accept the Committee’s invitation to make the formal presentation. Mr Arthur James said the amount raised in connection with the sale was considerably over £2,000, and of that sum £650 had been invested on that car. It had an exceedingly popular engine for its particular purpose, and the inside fittings were the result of a great deal of experience. In addition, they had founded three beds for a year-one being in Netley Hospital, and two in hospitals in France, and the balance, after deducting a small amount for incidental expenses, would go to the joint funds of the St John of Jerusalem Ambulance and the British Red Cross Society, which Societies had collected during the past eighteen months between 3 and 4 million pounds (hear, hear). In conclusion, Mr James emphasised the need for a continuance of support in the future.
The Rev R S Mitchison said in that ambulance all who had contributed saw something tangible, and when they read accounts of wounded men they would feel they had done their bit to try to alleviate their sufferings (hear, hear). Nothing was perfect without God’s help, and it had been suggested—and he had been very pleased the desire had been expressed—that a prayer should be offered to God to help them in their endeavour to alleviate suffering, and that He would bless and comfort the brave men who would make use of the Ambulance.
A dedicatory prayer was then offered by Mr Mitchison, followed by a petition for help in our difficulties, for protection from and victory over our enemies.
PROGRESS OF THE WAR.
Although over a fortnight has elapsed since the Germans launched their attack against Verdun, they have not achieved the object of the stroke which is to break the French line. With indomitable courage and a strategy unexcelled in the course of the war, the French are making good the temporary disadvantages suffered at the initial onslaught, and are now giving a direction to the battle favourable to themselves.
ANOTHER AIR RAID.
18 PERSONS KILLED, AND 52 INJURED.
Early on Monday morning the War Office issued a communique to the effect that a Zeppelin raid took place during Sunday night, when three hostile airships crossed over the North-East Coast. After crossing the coast the airships took various courses, and from the devious nature of their flight were apparently uncertain as to their bearings. The area visited included Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Rutland, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Essex, and Kent. As far as is known, about ninety bombs were dropped altogether. The casualties so far ascertained amount to 18 killed and 52 injured. The material damage was : Two terraces of houses practically destroyed ; one office, one public-house, a cafe, and several shops partly destroyed, and a block of almshouses badly damaged.
Intimation that Zeppelins were hovering over the country was promptly communicated to the Midlands. In Rugby warning was quietly sent to the various places of worship where evening service’s were being held. In some cases the services were completed, and in others they were brought to a close a little earlier than usual, and the congregations quietly dispersed. Special constables and members of the Volunteer Fire Brigade were called on duty to deal with emergencies if needed.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR.
SOLDIERS’ REST AT RUGBY STATION.
SIR,—I should like to disabuse the minds of your readers of “ any erroneous impressions ” which may have been created by Mr. J. Jones’s recent letter. It is satisfactory to learn that he fully appreciates the necessity of some place where our soldiers and sailors can pass their dreary waiting time in comfort. From personal intercourse I can say that soldiers are by no means enamoured with railway refreshment room charges, and it is to regretted that Mr. Jones should suggest a breach of the concessions (unless special permission has been obtained), which has proved to be a great boon to railway employees, who often find the accommodation barely adequate for the requirements of legitimate customers. The railway authorities in permitting on their premises and greatly assisting in the providing of their servants’ refreshment rooms, intended their sole use for the convenience of railway servants only, and not in competition against their own rooms or for the use of any class of passenger.
Whilst everyone must appreciate the material assistance so freely given by the Station War Relief Fund Committee and their good and useful work, they will find it difficult to understand why they should not be only too pleased to extend a helping hand to any scheme—instead of deprecating—which would more adequately provide for the comfort of our stranded sailors or soldiers.
Faithfully yours, W. F. HARDMAN.
26 Murray Road, Rugby.
RESTRICTIONS ON THE USE OF PAPER.
To Our Readers and Correspondents.
In accordance with intimation previously given the regulations for controlling the importation of paper and materials for making it, came into force on March 1st, and the necessity for reducing the size of the Rugby Advertiser has been forced upon us.
It will, therefore, be impossible to report local and district occurrences as expensively as hitherto, and we ask the indulgence of our readers and correspondents until happier circumstances permit us to return to the original size.
If our readers will also place definite orders with a newsagent or newsvendor for the regular supply of the Advertiser they will assist in preventing the wastage of paper caused by providing for casual sales.
STEEL.—In loving memory of our dear son, who was killed somewhere in France on March 16th, 1915,
“ One year has passed, our hearts still sore,
Day by day we miss him more ;
His welcome smile, his dear sweet face
Never on earth can we replace.
“ We often sit and think of him,
And think of how he died—
To think he could not say good-bye
Before he closed his eyes.”
Still sadly missed by his loving Father, Mother, Sister, and Brothers.