WORK FOR DISABLED MEN.—The 15th meeting of the Rugby Employment Committee was held on Monday. In discussing the problem of employment for disabled soldiers the committee wished to place on record their thanks to the employers in this area for the part they have already played in finding work for the disabled man. But there was still a large number of partially disabled men in Rugby who, although capable of whole time employment, were still out of work. It was felt that the committee could not urge too strongly upon every employer the necessity of absorbing into employment upon every conceivable opportunity these men who are now suffering from some disability as a result of their service with H.M. Forces. The committee would be glad if every employer would communicate with the Manager of the Rugby Employment Exchange whenever a vacancy arises which could possibly be filled by a disabled man.
WESLEYAN SOLDIERS WELCOMES HOME.—On Wednesday evening the Young People’s Association in connection with the Wesleyan Church welcomed home the men of the Church who had served in the war. An excellent supper was provided in the schoolroom, and the Rev. A. W. Bunnett, in a short address, said he was pleased to welcome so many who had returned safely. Messrs. J. Ferry, Wheatley, and Verrier spoke in a similar strain. Lance-Corpl. Morris, Sergt. Bockin, and Sergt. Knowles, on behalf of the guests, suitably replied. The company then stood while the Chairman read the names of those who had fallen. During the evening various games and competitions were arranged, and an enjoyable time was spent by the company, which numbered 150[?].
WHIST DRIVE.—On Wednesday evening in last week a whist drive and dance were given by the 5th Howitzer Battery Old Comrades’ Association at the Battery Headquarters, New Bilton, which had been gaily decked with flags and bunting. There was a large attendance, and the prizes, which were won by (ladies) Mrs. Chapman and Mrs. Correy, (gentlemen) Messrs, Scrivens, were presented by Mrs C. Nickalls, wife of the popular Commander of the Battery. The Rev. Bernard MacNulty, the Battery Chaplain, in thanking Mrs. Nickalls for attending, expressed appreciation of the interest she had shown not only in the men by sending them parcels of food and comforts, but in their wives and relatives. Now that the war was over, he hoped they would have many similar gatherings, and he also asked Mrs. Nickalls to send the Battery’s greetings to her husband, who is still overseas. Hearty cheers were given for Major and Mrs. Nickalls and the Rev. B. MacNulty. The M.C’s were Messrs. Painter and G. Hopewell (whist), and C. Packwood and S. Wetherington (dancing).
THE REV. STUDDERT KENNEDY, Vicar of St. Paul’s, Worcester, who as “ Woodbine Willie ” has published a number of popular trench poems, says that he has received a gift of £100 from his publishers for the benefit of the youth of his parish, and he proposes to establish a wholesome cinema among the parish hall attractions.
ST. MATTHEW’S SCHOOL MEMORIAL.—Mr. R. H. Myers presided over a meeting of the old boys of St. Matthew’s, held on Monday evening, to consider the question of a memorial to the boys of the school who lost their lives in the war. There was a large attendance, most of whom saw active service. Mr. Myers decided to promote a memorial for the school, and the following were appointed a committee to carry out all necessary arrangements :—Chairman, Mr. R. H. Myers ; treasurer, Mr. W. H. Gibbs ; joint hon. secretaries, Mr. A. C. Williams and Mr. T. Lord ; committee, Messrs. E. Sear, F. Morley, R. Harley, O. Mayson, W. Payne, and T. Collins.
CAPT. A. G. FINCH, of the R.A.M.C., has been released from the Army, and has returned to take up his practice at Gue House, Albert Street, Rugby.
OAKFIELD WAR RECORD.—Of 265 old Oakfield boys eligible for the Army records exist of 205 having served during the present war. Forty-one have been killed.
THE GLORIOUS 29TH.—On Friday in last week a special service to commemorate the landing, at the Dardanelles was held at Holy Trinity Church, Eltham, where two years ago Sir Ian Hamilton unveiled a memorial to the 29th Division. The former Divisional Chaplain, Rev. Henry A. Hall read an appreciative message from Queen Alexandra.
NO ADVERTISEMENT : NO MEETING.—On Wednesday evening a meeting was called in St. Matthew’s Ward in support of the Town War Memorial ; but owing to the small attendance—three ladies (two of whom had mistaken the object of the meeting), the three Ward representatives on the Council (Messrs. Wise, Hudson, and Friend), the Chairman (Rev. C. T. Aston), Mr. R. H. Myers, and the reporters—the meeting was postponed. Notice of the meeting was not advertised in the Press.
THE WEATHER.—The bitterly cold winds of Saturday were followed by a heavy downfall of rain and snow on Sunday, and on Monday morning the ground was covered with snow an inch deep. It is interesting to recall that exactly eleven years ago to the day of the week, fourteen inches of snow fell in the Rugby district.
A BRAVE HARBOROUGH MAGNA SOLDIER.
PRESENTED WITH MILITARY MEDAL BY EARL OF DENBIGH.
THE DANGERS OF BOLSHEVISM.
“ EXTREME SOCIALISTS GONE MAD.”
The Earl of Denbigh visited Harborough Magna on Thursday evening in last week to present the Military Medal to Pte. J. W. Hickman, and at the conclusion of the ceremony he lectured on the German War Plot, and uttered a warning against the insidious doctrines of the Bolshevists. The Rev. F. W. Allen (vicar) presided over a good attendance, which included Mrs. Hickman, mother of the young soldier to be honoured.
The Chairman briefly welcomed the Earl of Denbigh, and said while on a future occasion they would pay honour to their heroic dead, that evening they had met to honour those who had returned safely, more especially Corpl. Jack Hickman.
In making the presentation, the Earl of Denbigh said : I received a communication the other day from your Vicar, asking me to come and present this medal, and I accepted the invitation with the greatest possible pleasure, because I see that Corpl. Hickman was recommended on two separate occasions, viz. :
“ Pte. John William Hickman, 10915, 7th Batt., South Stafford Regiment, mentioned in despatches on May 22, 1915, ‘ for devotion to duty as a runner both in Gallipoli and France.’ During the operations in front of Thiepval on September 26, 1916, he frequently carried important messages through hostile barrages, and on several occasions has shown great coolness and determination under trying circumstances. Awarded the Military Medal, August 16, 1917.”
“ From June 7th to June 10th, in the neighbourhood of the Oosttaverne line, this battalion runner showed an utter disregard for his personal safety, taking several important messages through heavy artillery and machine-gun fire. His coolness and cheerfulness under heavy shelling set an invaluable example to all ranks. During the last 24 hours, greatly fatigued, he continued to volunteer for all the most arduous and dangerous duties. He has been previously mentioned in despatches for similar good conduct under fire.”
The Military Medal was instituted by the King in the early days of the war as a special distinction for “ Bravery in the field.” It is very difficult for anybody who has not been out there to understand what a “ runner ” has to do. One of the most important things in modem war is the maintenance of communication with the firing line. The headquarters are obliged to be in the rear for purpose of superintending the whole operations, the and it is of the greatest possible importance that the Commanding Officer should be kept accurately informed of everything that goes on. Under the conditions of modern war, the artillery, machine-gun, and rifle fire is so intense that the messenger’s work is a service of the greatest possible danger. But it is as important as it is dangerous, and some of the finest work in this war has been done by these men, who have carried messages from one point of the line to another, and who, reckless of their own safety, have either delivered them or all too often have fallen by the way. What you have to remember in the case of a runner is this : a man very often in the heat of battle can put up with a great deal when he is able to give the other fellow something back ; when they are able to shoot at the enemy, troops will stand a great deal of heavy shelling and punishment ; but it is a different matter altogether to have to carry out duties of this description under heavy fire when you are not in a position to shoot back yourself. And so I always think there are two classes of men who have deserved almost better than anybody else in this war ; these are the runners and the regimental stretcher-bearers—the runners who have taken these messages about the field of battle, and the regimental stretcher-bearers who have gone in under heavy fire for the purpose of bringing out the wounded. I have the greatest possible admiration for these two classes of men ; and I have, therefore, great pleasure in presenting this medal to Corpl. Hickman, and I hope he will live many years to wear it.
Lord Denbigh, amid cheers, then pinned the medal to Corpl. Hickman’s tunic. . . .
BRANDON & WOLSTON.
WAR HEROES ENTERTAINED.—The soldiers, sailors and airmen who were home in the parishes of Wolston, Brandon, and Bretford, were heartily welcomed on Tuesday last. About 80 accepted the invitation to a dinner in Messrs. Bluemel’s dining room, kindly lent for the occasion. Mr. C. A. Kirby, the chairman of the committee, made a short speech of welcome, and an excellent concert followed. Mr. Parsons, of Rugby, gave every satisfaction as accompanist, and Messrs. Mewis, Hodge, and Woodhams, of Rugby, and Mr. A. Hill, of London, added greatly to the enjoyment. Two packets of cigarettes were given to each guest. The committee deserve a special word of praise for their excellent arrangements, and the hon. secretary (Mr. T. E. Handford) carried out his onerous duties with marked.
CHURCH MATTERS.—The annual Vestry meeting was held on Thursday, April 24th, the Vicar, Rev. E. P. Rowland, presiding. Mr. F. G. Arkwright presented the Churchwardens’ accounts which showed a credit balance of £7 12s. 3d. The accounts of Thurlaston Chapel of Ease were equally satisfactory. The retiring wardens, Messrs. Arkwright and Powell, were re-elected, and Mr. Johnson and Miss Stanley were again asked to act as wardens for Thurlaston. The Vestry adopted a new scale of burial fees. The existing charges have been in force for 200 years or more. Leave was given to Mr. A. H. Harrison formerly headmaster of Dunchurch Hall, to apply for a Faculty for the erection of a memorial window to old pupils who fell during the war. The Vicar thanked the Council, which was re-elected en bloc, for the time being, and also expressed his gratitude to the parishioners for their generous Easter offerings. A resolution was adopted calling upon the Government to pass without delay the Enabling Bill, giving the Church a larger measure of self-government.
SOLDIERS’ PARTY.—About 30 demobilised soldiers were entertained to a meat tea and social evening at the Black Horse by the Committee of the Old Comrades Fund. Lieut. E. Glover presided, and Miss F. Beech was at the piano.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR.
RUGBY’S PEACE PREPARATIONS.
An Excellent Suggestion.
SIR.—I and others are hoping the town will arrange a fancy dress dance and promenade for all who take part in the Peace procession, as that will be the best encouragement to make a good show, and it gives those taking part a chance to see the others also.
I would suggest admission by fancy dress only, and half-hour houses for the public gallery.— Yours, etc., CHARLEYS AUNT.
BULL.—In ever-loving memory of Bombardier BULL (TOM), the dearly beloved only son of Mr. & Mrs. Henry Bull, Southam Road Farm, Napton, killed in France on May 3, 1917, aged 18 years.
“ The midnight stars shine o’er the grave
Of our dear son and soldier brave,
How dear, how brave, we shall understand
When we meet again in the Better Land.”
—From his loving Father, Mother, and Sisters.
GREEN.—In loving memory of Pte. J. H GREEN, beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. Green, Catthorpe.—From his loving Mother and Father, Sister and Brothers.
HARRISON.—In loving memory of our son, Pte. E. D. HARRISON, 4th Royal Fusiliers, who paid the supreme sacrifice at Monchy on May 3, 1917.—Also his children, JOHN and CISSIE, aged respectively 6 years and 6 months, died April, 1918.
HIPWELL.—In loving remembrance of Pte. G. W. HIPWELL, who was killed in France on May 3, 1917.—Always in the thoughts of his loving Wife.
JONES.—In loving memory of Corpl D. J. JONES, the beloved son of Mr. & Mrs. Jones, Shuckburgh, who was killed in action in France on April 29, 1917.
“ Two years have passed since that sad day,
When the one we loved was called away.
God took him home, it was His will.
But in our hearts he liveth still.”
—From his loving Father, Mother, Brothers and Sisters.
ROUSE.—On August 18, 1918, Pte. DENIS CHARLES ROUSE, the dearly beloved and only son of Mr. & Mrs. A. Rouse, Kineton ; officially reported missing May 27, 1918 ; now reported died in Prisoner of War Hospital at Trelon on August 18, 1918, aged 19 years.
STEBBING.—In loving memory of dear SYDNEY REGINALD STEBBING, died of wounds and buried in Hazebrouck Cemetery, 4th May, 1915.—R.I.P.—Still sadly missed by Mother, Father, Sisters and Brothers.
WELCH.—In affectionate remembrance of ERNEST EDWARD, only son of Mrs. and the late Mr. F. Welch, who fell in action on April 29, 1917.
“ On that happy Easter morning,
When the graves their dead restore.
Father, mother, sisters, brother,
Meet once more.”
—Missed most by those who loved him best.