23rd Nov 1918. Return of Repatriated Prisoners.

RETURN OF REPATRIATED PRISONERS.

Several Warwickshire and Northamptonshire prisoners of war, who have been repatriated under the terms of the Armistice, have returned to their homes during the past week.

We understand that one of the men was captured near La Bassee on August 9th. With a number of comrades he was taken to a camp six miles behind the lines, when they remained for several days, subsisting on a daily diet of a quarter of a loaf, a small portion of black sausage, and water. After refusing to give any information to the German Intelligence Officer, they were removed to Fort Macdonald at Lille, where they were kept in close confinement for six weeks, their sole exercise being a daily visit to the canteen to draw their nauseating rations. No tobacco was provided, and there were no facilities for washing—in fact, our informant was only allowed to wash once during the three months of his captivity. The Germans behaved with the uttermost brutality to the unfortunate men, and orders were in many cases quickly followed by blows with the butt-end of a rifle. Several of the prisoners died as a result of the scanty food and revolting conditions under which they were kept. When the German retirement began, the prisoners, numbering about 400, were ordered to “ man-handle ” the horse transport from Lillie to Tournai, and on arrival at this place they were placed in a camp near the Railway Station, which at that time was receiving constant attention from the Allied airmen. Unfortunately, a number of the prisoners were killed in some of the raids. At Tournai the midday meal consisted of boiled red cabbage, and the men considered themselves lucky if they were allowed a small portion of bread for tea. This diet, however, was little inferior to that served out to the German troops. The next move was to St Reneld, fifteen miles from Brussels, and while they were at that place they were thrilled with the news of the signing of the armistice. Apparently the news was motived as enthusiastically by the Germans as by their unfortunate victims, for the enemy troops immediately gave themselves over to orgies of drinking and pillaging, many of them also selling machine guns and other military equipment to the Belgium civilians. The day after the armistice was signed, the prisoners were ordered to pull the transports Brussels, but on the way they met a party of released British prisoners, whereupon they pulled the transports into a field and returned to the camp, where they were released and sent on their journey back to the British lines without any ration. On the way they subsisted on field turnips and food given to them by the Belgian civilians, and after walking for fifteen miles they fell in with a detachment of the British Army, by whom they were enthusiastically received. “ They only gave us ordinary army fare,” our informant added, “ but after the unappetising food we had been served so long, it seems quite a banquet.”

As an illustration of the callous nature of the Germans, it is sufficient to add that shortly before he was captured our informant was wounded by shrapnel in the leg and face ; these wounds were unattended by his captor—were simply left to heal naturally.

Two of the men, Gunner Harry Maule, R.G.A (captured during the Battle of Cambrai in November, 1917), Pte Francis Bailey, R.W.R, hail from Long Lawford.

During the next few weeks the remaining prisoners of war will probably be repatriated, and we shall be pleased if relatives and friends of any local prisoners will inform us of their return, together with any further particulars which may be of interest to our readers.

RUGBY PRISONERS OF WAR FUND.

A special meeting of the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee was held at the Benn Buildings on Monday last, Mr William Flint, C.C, presiding. There were also present : Mrs Wilson, Mrs Anderson, Mr A E Donkin, J.P, Mr F R Davenport. C.C, Mr R P Mason, Mr G W Walton, Mr C J Newman, Mr A W Shirley, and Mr J Reginald Barker (hon organising secretary).

Mr Barker said that the immediate repatriation of our prisoners of war being made one of the terms of the armistice, the committee would welcome the news that it no longer necessary to send individual parcels of food to our prisoners in Germany. It would, of course, be several weeks before all the men returned to England, and in the meantime the Central Prisoners of War Committee were despatching food in bulk for distribution, as opportunity occurred, through the British Red Cross Society Depot at Rotterdam. The work the Rugby Committee had undertaken during the past 3½ years had thus reached the end, and there was now no need to appeal for further subscriptions and donations, because the money they had in hand would provide for any outstanding liabilities with Regimental Care Committees and leave a substantial balance. The armistice news had resulted in an almost complete falling-off in financial support. During the first week of the current month over £100 was received, but the last nine days had produced only £11. The committee had provided all parcels necessary up to the end of November, and there was a deficit of £350 on the month, but it was fortunate they had sufficient funds in hand to meet this. Mr Barker gave the committee some interesting figures. He said they had raised nearly £7,000, not including a sum of more than £1,000 remitted direct to Care Committees by adopters of individual prisoners of war, which helped to relieve the strain on the local fund. Nearly £4,000 of this amount had been raised in the past twelve months, so that with the growth in the number of prisoners there had been an equal growth in the revenue. Twelve months ago there were 61 men on the Rugby list, costing £125 per month, and they concluded their efforts, with a list of 149 men, costing over £500 per month.

On the proposition of Mr Newman, seconded by Mr Walton, it was resolved that the committee postpone their final meeting for a few days to enable the Hon Secretary to have the accounts completed and present the balance-sheet to a public meeting of subscribers to the fund.

The Chairman said he could not let the committee depart without thanking them for the good work they had done and also to voice the thanks of the committee to the people of Rugby and district for the very loyal support they had given over a long period. He also paid a special tribute to the Hon Secretary for the very efficient manner in which he had organised and managed the whole of the affairs of the committee (applause).—Mr Donkin said he envied Mr Barker the success he had attained in his efforts on behalf of our prisoners in Germany. He felt Mr Barker would always be proud of his work and rewarded by the knowledge that the prisoners were grateful to him for all he had done.

Mr Walton proposed a vote of thanks to the Chairman for the courteous and generous manner in which he had conducted the meetings, remarking that he was always in his place, even on occasions when he was far from well.—Mr Donkin seconded, and the resolution was enthusiastically carried.

Mr Barker thanked the committee for their kind expressions. He had had their whole-hearted support all through, and had received much encouragement from the Chairman. He valued the many letters he had received from the men in their prison camps and the knowledge that the parcels were of such vital importance to the prisoners had determined him to continue to the end the work he had undertaken. Now that the end had come no one was more thankful in the knowledge that the men were now being released from their sufferings, and that the food sent had helped largely to relieve their distress.

LOCAL ENGINEERS AND THE CRUEL TREATMENT OF BRITISH PRISONERS.

The following communication baa been sent to the Prime Minister :—
“ SIR,—I have the honour to confirm a telegram sent you this evening, and which correctly represents the feeling amongst the engineering community employed at the different works at Rugby, reading as follows :—
“ The whole of the engineering community employed on munitions of war at Rugby is much concerned to learn the harrowing details of the manner British prisoners are endeavouring to reach our lines, and demand that some adequate and drastic measures be taken immediately to feed, clothe, and transport these men, irrespective of any difficulties or restrictions imposed by the armistice or the German authorities.
“ I have the honour to be, yours obediently,
“ (Signed) J P GREGORY.
“ c/o The British Thomson-Houston Co, Rugby.
“ November 20, 1918.”

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Lieut J H Clark, R.A.F, who before joining the Army was employed on the outside construction staff at the B.T.H, died on November 4th as the result of an aeroplane accident.

Mr J M Skinner, of 83 Abbey Street, received a message of sympathy from the King and Queen on November 6th on the loss of his son, Pte R J Skinner, of the West Yorkshire Regiment, who was officially reported to have been killed in action. However, Mr Skinner last week received a letter from his son, in which he says he is in good health and anxious to have a “ peep,” into Germany.

Trooper Frederick Farndon. of the Prince of Wales Inn, Rugby, has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for distinguished and gallant services rendered on the occasion of destruction or damage by enemy action to transports.

Mr C E and Mr Clements, 33 Winfield Street, have lost their son, Gunner E E Clements, R.F.A, from pneumonia, under sad circumstances, after seeing a lot of service in France. He worked as a fitter in the L & N-W Railway Sheds, and when war broke out he answered the first call, and joined Kitchener’s Army in August, 1914. He served three years in France, and was twice badly wounded. During the big German offensive in May this year he was gassed. On recovering he returned to his regiment, when he was called out of the ranks and told that he would have his discharge in two days’ time after good service. On the following day he was struck down with influenza, which developed into pneumonia, to which he succumbed on the 14th inst. The funeral took place at Rugby Cemetery on Saturday last. He was borne to the grave by six of his former workmates, and a large number of flowers testified to the esteem in which he was held.

THE INFLUENZA EPIDEMIC.

The influenza epidemic still shows signs of abating, although the death-rate continues alarmingly high. During the last week 16 deaths from this cause were registered locally, making a total of over 120 since October 14th. There is still a considerable amount of illness in the town and district, but fortunately in the majority of cases it is not of so virulent a nature as that experienced at the beginning of the epidemic.

DUNCHURCH

A SAD RECORD.- During the past week three military funerals have taken place – a record that has never been experienced previously in the parish. The deceased soldiers were: Pte L Howkins (6th Devons), Pte G Hughes (Oxford and Bucks L.I.), and Pte W Evans (Royal Warwicks), all of whom died from pneumonia. There have been four other deaths and a great deal of illness in the parish.

MR T BRAIN, postman, Mill Street, Dunchurch, has received official news that his son, Pte G Brain, R. W. R, was killed in action on November lst. Pte Brain, who had only been in the Army eight months, played three quarter back for the Dunchurch Football Club, and was also a member of the Dunchurch Brass Band and a ringer at the Parish Church.

BILTON PARISH COUNCIL.

THE NEW BILTON MORTUARY.

Several matters of more than usual importance from a parochial point of view were considered at a meeting of the Bilton Parish Council, held at New Bilton on Monday, when there were preset : Messrs J H Veasey, vice-chairman (who presided), F M Burton, J J Cripps, A J Askew, J H Lambert, R Lovegrove, A T Watson, F J Smith, F W Hunt, and F Fellows (clerk).

THE INFLUENZA MORTALITY.

The New Bilton Ward Committee reported that, whereas the yearly average of interments in the cemetery was only 40, no less than 20 funerals had taken place during the past month. . . . .

THE WAR MEMORIAL.

A letter was read from Capt M E T Wratislaw (chairman of the Council), in which, after apologising for his absence owing to military duties, he said : “ As regards the War Memorial, I have not been able to give the matter any lengthy consideration, as, of course, the armistice has only just been signed, and peace is not yet declared, so that I think a public meeting is a little premature. I hope New Bilton will not be forgotten. Any form of memorial should be, if possible, in both wards. The first thing would be to perpetuate the names of all fallen by a tablet in both wards. If a museum or reading room is built I have a nucleus in the Potter Bar Zeppelin frame and some shell noses for the former. I do not like the institution of a club for discharged men only. We still have the invested balance of King George’s Coronation Fund, and a drinking fountain might be erected in both wards, with the addition of the roll of all fallen men and a tablet of the Coronation. Again, the provision of open spaces in both wards would have my strongest support.”—Mr Lovegrove suggested that the Council build public baths or a free library. They had the power to do this by adopting certain Acts.—The Chairman, however, expressed the opinion that any memorial should be provided by voluntary subscriptions. Moreover, if they adopted Mr Lovegrove’s suggestion, it would mean higher rates in future for maintenance, and many of the smaller property owners in the parish were already hard put to it to raise the present rates.—After discussion, the further consideration of the question was referred to the respective Ward Committees, who will report to a subsequent meeting of the Council.

LONG ITCHINGTON.

DANCE—After the cessation of hostilities a dance was got up at the Schools to celebrate the happy event, and also to assist the Soldiers’ Christmas Parcels Fund. It proved very successful, and by its means £3 8s 6d has been netted for the fund. The Excelsior Band (leader, Mr W Priest) volunteered their services, and the refreshments were kindly provided by Mrs Henry Powell. The arrangements were made by Mrs G Wright, Misses O Powell, M Whitehead, A Whitehead, C Spraggett, M Spraggett, and N Lane, assisted by Mr H T Wright (late of R.W.R) and Pte Alex Askew (N.Z Medical Corps).

THE ROLL OF HONOUR.—The Long Itchington roll of honour contains 230 names. Of these 29 have given their lives for their country, five are missing, four are prisoners of war, eight have been decorated, one has been mentioned in despatches, 16 have been honourably discharged, and upwards of 50 are known to have been wounded.

FEEDING THE GUN.—In connection with the campaign to raise the money of War Bonds in this district, the gun arrived here at 10 o’clock on Tuesday morning, and remained until 1 p.m. The children welcomed it with cheers and waving flags, and a goodly number of people assembled round it when it was unlimbered on the village green. The demonstrations given by the genial corporal gunner in charge were much appreciated, and the shrapnel scars on the carriage were examined with a pathetic interest.

A VETERAN NATIVE.—The arrival here last week of Gunner Wm Salt, R.F.A, from Mesopotamia on a visit created no small interest, and he received a hearty welcome not only from his own family, but from many old friends. He enlisted 17 years ago, and it is now some 13 years since he last came home. He was located in India when the War broke out, and eventually proceeded to Mesopotamia, where he has for some time past been attached to General Maude’s staff.

BRANDON.

MILITARY CROSS FOR CAPT D C M BEECH.—News has reached Brandon that Capt D C M Beech has been awarded the Military Cross Captain Beech is the Second son of Colonel R J and Mrs Beech of Brandon Hall. He received his military training at Sandhurst, and before the war broke out was connected with the 20th Hussars. He was early in the fighting, and at the very beginning saw much service in France. He was afterwards sent to Egypt. Here he acted as Brigadier-Major (temporary), and did fine service. Capt Beech lost his elder brother at Ypres, and is now the sole surviving son of Colonel Beech. The news caused much pleasure amongst the residents at Brandon. His father, Colonel Beech, has also been much service in France, but recently has been very ill. The hard work in France told upon his constitution, but we are pleased to say that, although still confined to the house, his health is improving.

SCHOOL CLOSURE.—Brandon School has been closed by the Medical Officer of Health. Fifty per cent of the scholars were absent, through illness, on the last day of opening. The whole of several families are in bed through influenza.

SOUTHAM

FUNERALS.—The funeral took place in Southam churchyard on Monday . . . of a German prisoner, who died after a short illness at one of the local prison camps, in which many of the men have suffered from the prevailing epidemic. The coffin. covered with the German flag, was borne to the grave by deceased’s fellow prisoners, many others following. The English guard of four formed the firing party. Lieut Crawford was the officer in charge. The service was conducted by the local Roman Catholic priest.

RUGBY PETTY SESSIONS.
TUESDAY.—Before Dr Clement Dukes (in the chair), and Messrs A E Donkin and T A Wise.

SEQUEL TO NEW BILTON TRAGEDY.—On behalf of the Rugby Board of Guardians, Mr H Lupton Reddish applied for an order to be made committing a boy named Jack Ernest Hill, aged 13, to an Industrial School. He said the boy was an illegitimate child, and his mother committed suicide on November 4th while distracted with grief at the death of her husband, which took place the same evening from pneumonia. On November 6th the boy was taken to the Workhouse, and on the 10th inst he ran away. He was fetched back the same day, and subsequently was taken before the Guardians, when he promised Canon Mitchison to behave better in future. An hour later he ran away again, and was brought back at nine o’clock by his aunt. He was then seen by Mr Robotham (the vice-chairman of the Board), and after giving a further promise of amendment, he was cautioned that a repetition of the offence might result in him having to appear before the Justices. Early in the afternoon he ran away again, and was brought back by his aunt. Three years ago the boy was brought before the Bench on a charge of stealing apples.—In reply to the Chairman, Mr Reddish said the boy was not a suitable subject for a lunatic asylum, and there was as yet no means of dealing with him under the Mental Deficiency Act.—Continuing, Mr Reddish said in August last the boy had a sunstroke, and he suffered from partial paralysis of the left side. He was backward in his education, and it was thought that if he was sent to an Industrial School he would be under supervision and discipline, and would also be taught a trade. It was impossible for the officials of the Workhouse to keep a watch on him, and the Guardians could only punish him to a certain extent by locking him up—a procedure which was not advisable in a case of this kind.—The boy was sent to an Industrial School for three years. . . . .

DEATHS.

CHEESE.—On November 7th, in France, of pneumonia, following influenza, the Rev. WILLIAM GERARD CHEESE, M.A., Chaplain to the Forces, Vicar of Duddington, Northants., aged 35, youngest son of the late Rev. J. A. Cheese, Vicar of New Bilton, Rugby.

CLEMENTS.—On the 12th inst., at Horton War Hospital, Epsom, EUSTACE EDWIN, the dearly beloved eldest son of C. E. & M. F. Clements, Gunner, R.F.A., of “ flu ” and pneumonia ; aged 25 years.—Deeply mourned.

COLING.—In ever loving memory of Corpl. ARTHUR TOMPKINS, who was killed in action “ somewhere in France,” November 8th, aged 21 years.
“ We pictured his safe returning.
We longed to clasp his hand ;
But God has postponed our meeting
Till we meet in the Better land.”
—Deeply mourned by his sorrowing Parents, Brother, Sister, and Dorothy.

DAVENPORT.—At Queen Alexandra Military Hospital, Millbank, London, Pte. C. W. DAVENPORT, Coldstream Guards, the dear and only son of Charles and Maria Davenport, of Harborough Magna, died November 14, 1918 ; aged 24 years.—“ His end was peace.”
“ A light is from our household gone,
A voice we loved is still.”

HUGHES.—In loving memory of Pte. JAMES AMOS HUGHES, who passed away on November 11th at the Military Hospital, Dover, after a short illness, aged 22 years.
“ Father, in Thy gracious keeping,
Leave Thee now Thy servant sleeping.”
—From his sorrowing Father, Mother, Sisters and Brother, also Brother in France.

WEBSTER.—Killed in action in France on September 28th, ARTHUR, the dearly beloved grandson of Thomas Webster, of 71 Abbey Street, Rugby, aged 19 years.
“ A day of remembrance, sad to recall,
The loss of our dear one, loved by us all.
We think of him in silence, and his name we oft recall ;
But there is nothing left but his photo on the wall.
Fondly we loved him. he is as dear to us still,
But in grief we must bend to God’s Holy Will.
If we could have raised his dying head, or heard his last farewell,
The grief would not have been so hard for us that loved him well.”
—Too dearly loved to be forgotten by His loving Grandad, Aunt & Uncle, & cousins Eveline & Frances.

WILDMAN.—On November 2nd, in hospital in France, died from wounds received in action, JOSEPH WALTER WILDMAN.

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29th Jan 1916. Compulsion Passed – Five weeks for Unattested Young Single Men

COMPULSION PASSED.

FIVE WEEKS FOR UNATTESTED YOUNG SINGLE MEN.

The House of Lords passed the Compulsion Bill on Wednesday night.

This means that within five weeks from Thursday young single men for whom there is no excuse will be in khaki. Eight groups are already called up—ages 19 to 26 inclusive.

LABOUR’S VOTE.

The Labour Party Conference was resumed on Thursday at Bristol. A resolution was moved in these terms :-

This the National Labour Party protests emphatically against the adoption of Conscription in any form, as it is against the spirit of British democracy and full of danger to the liberties of the people.

The voting was:

For the resolution …… 1,796,000

Against …………….. 219,000

The resolution was declared carried amidst cheers.

SATISFACTORY ENLISTMENT UNDER THE GROUP SYSTEM

Lord Derby stated in the House of Lords on Tuesday night that married men were enlisting in large numbers day by day under the group system. Single men, too, were coming in in bigger proportion than the married, but not to such an extent as yet as to justify the statement that the number still left was a “ negligible quantity.”

Lord Derby mentioned that since his report was issued four lists of reserved occupations had been published, and in four days last week 100,000 badges were distributed. He appealed to the Government to stay their hand in this matter.

It is understood that a farther set of groups will be called up during next month, and a hint to “ Derby ” recruits may, therefore, prove of use. An important point in the scheme was a promise to men who attested that they would be allowed to join the regiments of their choice on being summoned to the colours, as far as this was practicable. A large number of those who responded to the call last week, however, when the first groups were instructed to present themselves, found, it is freely said, that no attention was paid to their wishes, and that they were drafted to corps in which they had no interest. If a man wishes to enter a particular regiment because of personal or local associations, or the presence of friends in the ranks, he will find it advisable, therefore, to enlist in that unit in the ordinary way a few hours before the time fixed for his appearance at a depot under the group system.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Lieut. G. T. Hilton, of the Motor Transport Section, has been gazetted captain, the promotion to date from December 1st.

The members of the Rugby Co-operative Women’s Guild recently sent a consignment of socks, and handkerchiefs to the Rugby men in the Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry, and Mrs. Busby, the secretary, has received a letter of thanks from Sergt.-Major Percival Thistlewood, in which he says it gives the Rugby men great satisfaction to know “ that they are still in the memory of their native town.”

On Page 3 of this issue [Not included in this Blog] will be found an account of how the gallant 9th Warwickshires were decimated and lost, all their officers in Gallipoli. There was one officer, however, Lieut. G. H. D. Coates, formerly manager of Lloyds Bank at Rugby, who was not in the fighting. Being seriously ill, he was in hospital at Cairo at the time. Subsequently he was placed in command of the Turkish Officers Prisoners of War Hospital at Cairo, till illness again compelled another stay in hospital. We are glad to learn that he is now convalescent, and is going to Luxor for a month, and after another spell at the T.O.P.W. Hospital hopes to rejoin his regiment.

We learn that Sergt. J, Menelly, of the 1st Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was killed on the Gallipoli Peninsula on January 1st. His parents resided at Downing Street, Belfast, and when the 89th Brigade was stationed in Rugby, he was billeted at 178 Cambridge Street. He was one of the first soldiers to interest himself in the Cambridge Street Wesleyan Soldiers’ Home, and he was subsequently appointed to take charge of the club. He was very popular with all the frequenters of the rooms, by whom he was known as “ Corporal Jim ” and, possessing a rich voice, his services as a singer were in much request. When his regiment was ordered to the front, he was appointed a range finder. The news of his death was received from Corpl Black, who was also billeted with him, and who has been invalided home with the loss of a lung through shrapnel.

GUNNER: E. A. FARNDON WOUNDED.

News has been received by Mrs. E. A. Farndon, of Poplar Grove, that her husband, Gunner Farndon, of the Rugby Howitzer Battery, has been rather badly wounded in the face by shrapnel. He is at present in a hospital in France, where he has been attended by Dr. Hoskyn, of Rugby, and is getting on well.

RUGBY F.C. CAPTAIN’S NARROW ESCAPE.

George Renshaw, the captain of the Rugby Football Club, who, after ten months’ service in France, is now with the Army Service Corps in Salonica, has, according to a letter he has sent to his brother, recently had a very narrow escape. A German aeroplane flew over the corps and dropped a bomb outside the tent in which the Rugby captain was sitting. The orderly outside was seriously wounded, but those inside the tent fortunately escaped injury,. The writer also states that he met George Cave, a well-known Rugby forward who has assisted the local club, at Salonica.

THE SOLDIERS & SAILORS COMFORTS’ COMMITTEE.

AN APPEAL FOR COMFORTS.

To the Editor of the Advertiser.

DEAR SIR,—As announced in your columns last week a committee has been formed to arrange for sending small comforts from the town to all Rugby and New Bilton men serving with the colours.

It is extremely desirable, in the first place, that a complete record should be compiled of all who joined His Majesty’s Forces, and in order to obtain this we are very anxious to secure the co-operation of any who will undertake to go round and get the names in the various parts of the town, and at the same time secure subscriptions towards the fund.

It is not anticipated that many visits will be necessary, and if those ladies and gentlemen who so kindly gave their services to the Prince of Wales’ Fund will undertake their old districts, it will be a great help towards attaining the desired end. I earnestly hope, therefore, that all who can possibly spare time will send their names in to me at 27 Sheep Street.

Yours very truly,
J J MCKINNELL.

SIR,—Would it be out of place to suggest that the Urban Council of Rugby should set aside a piece of ground in Rugby Cemetery as a Heroes’ Portion, in which free interment could be made of soldiers who died on returning from active service or Home defence to their native town. It seems rather grim to suggest this, but the fact has to be faced that many soldiers may return broken in war and perhaps so injured that their enfeebled constitution will hardly enable them long to survive. I understand that several places have already done this, and I read that Northampton Council has set aside a portion of the civic cemetery for this purpose. The town should surely relieve the relatives and parents of the dead heroes of the necessity of paying for graves; indeed, the town should deem it an honour to grant them a last resting-place, upon which future generations could not look unmoved. I would go so far as to suggest that all Rugby men serving with the colours should be able to claim a last resting-place in this portion, no matter how long they live after the war, for they are all heroes, and should be remembered as such to the end of their days, and after.

GR B. LEESON,
On Active Service.

WELCOME HOME FOR SOLDIERS.

DEAR SIR,—I read Mr. Twyford’s letter in last Saturday’s issue of the Rugby Advertiser on the reception of soldiers home on leave with great interest. The City of London National Guard Volunteers have members of their corps stationed at every London terminus day and night to assist and direct soldiers from the front coming home on leave by giving advice as to train routes, etc. I am sure that if the Rugby Volunteer Corps could arrange to have one or two of their members in turn at Rugby Station to meet soldiers and could arrange for conveyances for them, those of the National Guard on duty at Euston would warn soldiers travelling to Rugby to look out at Rugby Station for similar assistance.-I am, Sir, etc.

EDWARD G. ROSCOE.
The Paddock House, Gerrards Gross, Bucks.
January 23rd, 1916.
The Secretary, War Office, London, has sent to all Masters of Foxhounds a copy of the following, showing that their decision to continue to hunt the country is right and fully approved of :—

“ The Director of Remounts has urged upon the Director General of Recruiting that he is seriously concerned in the maintenance of hunts, as the preservation of hunting is necessary for the continuance of breeding and raising of light horses suitable for cavalry work. Lord Derby accordingly trusts that every effort will be made to carry on the hunts in the United Kingdom, but he hopes that as far as possible men ineligible for military service will be employed. But in cases where any men of military age are indispensable for the maintenance of the hunt, an appeal should be made to the Local Tribunal.”

ENCOURAGING THE POULTRY INDUSTRY.—With the increased attention being given to the poultry industry of this country, especially on account of the egg shortage due to the war, it is not surprising that efforts should be made towards the spread of knowledge on this subject in Warwickshire. At the meeting last week of the Warwickshire Education Committee a report was submitted stating that the Elementary Sub-committee had received three applications for permission to establish a poultry class, and they had instructed the Assistant Director of Higher Education to report with regard to these and also concerning poultry instruction in elementary schools in the county. There is no doubt that a great deal of good could be accomplished by the dissemination of facts bearing upon the most modern methods of feeding and rearing of birds both as regards egg, yield and flesh formation, and that having regard to the great demand there is for both eggs and table birds, the more information of a practical kind that can be circulated upon the subject in an agricultural county like Warwickshire the better.

MOTOR WORK ON FARMS.

WILL THE HORSE DISAPPEAR ?

The motor could, if properly developed, do any work on the farm except make a hen lay eggs, was the opinion expressed by Mr W J Malden, in an address to the members of the Farmers’ Club at the Whitehall Rooms on Tuesday. It was capable of tearing up deep soil or picking up a pin. He looked forward to the time when a large proportion of our crops would be cut and threshed in one operation. He also considered a motor-driven spade, to be handled by disabled soldiers, could be invented.

The horse, Mr Madden thought, would not disappear from the farm, but it was, inevitable that much of the work hitherto done by horses and men would be done by motor. The most useful form of motor for farm work had, however, yet to be determined.

PROHIBITING IMPORTS.

PAPER PULP AND RAW TOBACCO.

DRASTIC PROPOSALS.

An announcement of far-reaching importance was made by Mr Runciman, President of the Board of Trade, before the prorogation of Parliament on Thursday.

Replying to a question to the House of Committee, he stated that the Government had decided to relieve the pressure on shipping by cutting down some of the imports which are less essential for national existence than others, and which prevent vessels coming to our ports from being used for more urgent purposes, Paper pulp and grass for making paper have been chosen as the first subjects of the operation of this policy because of their great bulk and influence on tonnage. The annual quantity now imported is 1,000,000 tons, and the importation of a large percentage of this total will shortly be prohibited.

Mr Runciman expressed confidence that the Government could rely on the loyal co-operation of paper makers and newspaper proprietors in a step which must of necessity interfere with their business. He appealed to householders, as well as those engaged in every business and industry in which paper is used, to render assistance by exercising rigid economy in the use of paper.

The export from this country of rags and waste-paper is about to be prohibited.

The importation of other articles and materials of a bulky nature will shortly be prohibited, including the following :

Raw tobacco.
Many building materials.
Furniture woods and veneers.
Some fruits.

If necessary this list may be extended until the tonnage pressure is eased.

PRESS ASSOCIATION

BRITISH CASUALTIES OF THE WAR.

Prime Minister, in a written Parliamentary answer to-day, states that up to January 9th the total casualties in all fields of operations were:—

Officers, killed, wounded, and missing, 24,122.

Other ranks, 525,345.

Grand total, 549,467.

 

“ Tell me what you think a full pack weighs,” said the Adjutant to one of the new men.—“ Two hundred pounds, sir.”—The Adjutant gasped. “ What ! he cried, “ Haven’t you been told that it never weighs more than sixty ?”-“ Yes, sir.” said the recruit. “ But asked me what I thought it weighed, and I was thinking of the last time I had one on.”

 

5th Jun 1915. Alien found with camera

A LIGHT PENALTY

Agnes Louisa Richard teacher, 2 New Street, Rugby, was charged on remand with being an alien, and unlawfully having in her possession one camera, three dark slides, three boxes of plates, nine printing frames, two packets of printing paper, and two negative holders, contrary to section 22 (h) of the Aliens Restriction (Consolidation) Order, 1914 at 2 New Street, Rugby, on May 28th.-She admitted having the camera.-Detective Mighall deposed that he received information on May 27th that defendant had a camera in her possession, and on instructions from Supt Clarke, he obtained a search warrant, and went to the house with P.C Wakelin, and found the camera produced and the other photographic requisites that were mentioned in the charge. There were also several finished photographs, but all of these were of a harmless character.-Defendant said she did not know that she ought not to have a camera. She only thought the ought not to photograph, and she had not done so outside the house since the outbreak of war. She did not know that she ought not have a camera in her possession.-By the Chairman : She had received no warning that she ought not to keep a camera.-The Chairman, addressing defendant, said everybody knew her in Rugby, and although she was an alien, instead of looking upon her as an enemy they looked upon her as a friend. However, she had broken the law, and rendered herself liable to a fine of £100. The Bench agreed with what she had said that it was want of knowledge which prevented her from registering this camera, and they would take that into consideration and inflict a fine of 10s 0d only. She had better register her camera. It was important in these terrible times through which they were going that she should keep as strictly to the law as she possibly could.-On the application of Supt Clarke, the camera was ordered to be forfeited until such time as defendant could obtain permission to have same.

WARWICKSHIRE YEOMANRY THANKED.

THE ATTACK ON THE WAYFARER.

The following Army order has been issued :-

The Secretary of State for War desires to place on record his warm appreciation of the gallant conduct and devotion to duty displayed by Major R A Richardson and the officers,non-commissioned officers, and men of the 1st Warwickshire Yeomanry on the occasion of a torpedo attack the transport Wayfarer, on April 11, 1915. Through the prompt action of Major Richardson and the marked efficiency of the officers and men under his command only five lives were lost out of a total of 189 men, and all the horses (763 in number) were brought safely to shore. The Secretary of State for War is proud of the behaviour of the troops, and regards it as a good example of the advantages of sub-ordination and strict discipline.

FIRST CASUALTY IN THE RUGBY HOWITZER BATTERY.

On Tuesday last news came to hand that Gunner James Leslie Dunbar, of the Rugby Howitzer Battery, youngest son of Sergt J Dunbar, gymnastic and drill instructor at Bilton Grange, was killed in action on May 27th. The sad news was conveyed in the following letter from Major C Nickalls, the officer commanding the Battery :-

“ DEAR MR DUNBAR,-I have a very sad duty to perform, and that is to tell you that your son Leslie was killed in action yesterday. He was on billet guard at the time, and we had just finished firing when the Germans fired eight rounds in the vicinity of the billet. One fell about four yards from your son, and a shrapnel bullet hit him in the head. He was hit at 8 p,m, and died in the field hospital two hours later, I got a doctor to him immediately, but nothing could be done. He was unconscious all the time. He was buried to-day at 2 p.m by the Rev Bernard McNulty in the field opposite where he gave his life for his country, and was lowered into his grave by the men of my Battery from Dunchurch and myself. Please accept the sincere sympathy of the officers and men of the Battery in your sad loss, which we share equally with you. Your son was a general favourite with us, and he had endeared himself to us all by his cheery disposition and his readiness at all times to take on any job that was wanted. His grave has been beautifully decorated by the men. and it will be carefully looked after by us all.”

The Rev B McNulty, who is with the Brigade as chaplain, also wrote a long and sympathetic letter to the bereaved parents, which they much appreciated, and he added: “ It is a real grief to me, for I have known him for so long.”

Leslie Dunbar was an apprentice in the erecting shop at Willans & Robinson’s when the war broke out, and he joined the Battery at the latter end of August. He was 20 years of age. Deep sympathy is felt with Mr and Mrs Dunbar in their bereavement. Mr Dunbar has not only served his country with the famous Worcestershire Regiment, but has two other sons on active service-one a staff-sergeant in the A.S.C and the other is an artificer on a submarine.

Driver O’Coy, of 36 Essex Street, with the Rugby Howitizer Battery, also writes home with intimation of the death of Gunner Dunbar “ the first casualty.” He adds: “ I am all right. It’s a bit cold to-day for a change. We get sunny weather here-red hot one day ; cold the next ; rain the next.”

FORMER RUGBY TERRITORIAL’S GALLANT ACTION.

SAVES WOUNDED COMRADE’S LIFE, BUT LOSES HIS OWN.

“ The bravest act a man can perform under fire ” were the word written by his officer to Mrs Hammond, of Northend, in conveying the news of the death of her son, Private C D Hammond, 4th Royal Irish Dragoon Guards. For five years Private Hammond’s home was at Welford, and he was employed by Messrs Colebrook, fishmongers, Rugby. He joined the Rugby Howitzer Battery (Territorials), but before the outbreak of the war he enlisted in the 4th Royal Irish Dragoon Guards. His death took place on Empire Day (May 24th). On Friday last week his mother received the following letter from Second-Lieut Lionel Parsons, dated May 25th :-“ As troop officer of your gallant son, I feel I should like to express my sympathy to you for his loss. I witnessed him perform the bravest act a man can perform under fire. He carried a wounded soldier across open ground swept by shell fire, and saved his life. No man could have done more, or have behaved in a more gallant way in the whole British Army. I am proud to have had him in my troop.”

A further letter was received from Sergt H F Allaby, A Squadron, 4th (R.I) Dragoon Guards, as follows :-“ regret to have the unpleasant task of writing to tell you that your son was killed yesterday in action. Please allow me, on behalf of the squadron, to express our deep regret and sympathy in the loss you have suffered. His death was painless and instantaneous, and followed a few minutes after him performing one of the bravest acts anyone would wish to see. In your loss please think always he died in a good cause and well doing his duty.” The deceased only attained his 18th birthday last year.

Mrs Hammond’s eldest son is now serving at the front with the Rugby Howitzer Battery.

A PRISONER IN GERMANY.

Leslie Wood, of the Rifle Brigade, has this week written home to his parents. Mr and Mrs J Wood, of 85 Oxford Street, Rugby, stating that he is wounded, and was taken a prisoner by the Germans on May 10th. He mentions that he was hit by a shell, and his wounds are not serious. He adds: “ We have been treated very well up to the present, so don’t worry about me,” Referring to the battle, he says it was too awful to speak about. It will be remembered that a fortnight ago we reported that Rifleman Leslie Wood was missing, and his friends will naturally be glad to learn the young soldier is still living, although in the hands of the enemy. Reference is made in the letter to Rifleman Keen, of 2 Winfield Street, who was reported last week amongst the missing. He is stated to have been wounded in the head, and his companions cannot say what has become of him.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

In the list of killed under date May 28th appears the name of Lieut C Bourns, 4th Rifle Brigade, formerly a master at Bilton Grange.

Seaman Charles Hall, Royal Naval Brigade, who was a clerk in the office of Mr Harold Eaden, solicitor, Rugby, has been wounded in action in the Dardanelles.

So far no news has been received of Mr W H Cranch, 37 New Street, New Bilton, who was on H.M.S Majestic when she was sunk in the Dardandles ; but as his name did not appear in the list of missing issued by the Admiralty this week, it is hoped that he has been saved.

ANOTHER APPEAL TO THE SLACKERS & STRIKERS.

Gunner W J Durbin, of the R.F.A, an employee of the L & N-W Railway, lately residing at 11 Spring Street, Rugby, writing to his wife at Old Bilton, says :-

” We are in a very important position here, as this is supposed to be where the Germans are trying to force their way in to Calais. We are a few miles behind the firing line, and we have some very exciting moments. It is a bit of fun to see us sometimes, but the worst of it is when the Red Cross motors come by us with the poor men in, we see some awful sights at times. There were about 200 or 300 poor fellows suffering from gas lying in the next field to us, rolling about in agony and pain. Some of them have died. There is quite a little churchyard in the same field of the poor chaps who have died. If only the people at home could see the poor men suffering they would see to it that there was not a single chap left at home who is fit for service. I do not mean the married men ; keep them at home to look after the dear ones left behind. I wish sometimes I could get home for a bit ; but it is no use to talk about it as long as I keep safe and get home before the summer is over I do not mind ; but I am afraid it will not be so if they at home do not put their best effort to the call, and the others keep at work in getting plenty of ammunition out to us.” Gunner Durbin goes on to say that he is keeping A1 and getting plenty of food, and wishes to be remembered to all his old friends at Rugby, whom he hopes to have the pleasure of meeting again very soon.

WHAT A SERGEANT AND FOUR MEN DID.

On May 13, the day of the great attack upon our cavalry, the London Rifle Brigade did marvels. Only 278 men were left in the battalion, and during the day 91 of those fell. In one trench Sergt Belcher commanded four survivors of his regiment and two Hussars, whom he had picked up. His trench was blown to pieces, and he had to face a German attack which, by accurate and rapid rifle fire he succeeded in repulsing. No more heroic game of bluff has ever been played, and it saved the whole right of the 4th Division. Sergt Belcher is a nephew of Mr and Mrs J J Smith, of Kenilworth House, New Bilton.

TROOPER FRED FARNDON SUSTAINS A BROKEN ARM.

KICKED BY AN OFFICERS CHARGER.

News has just been received by Mrs Farndon, of 9 Russell Street, Rugby, that her son, Trooper Fred Farndon, of the Rugby Troop of the Warwickshire Yeomanry, has met with a regrettable accident.

“ While waiting to embark again and re-join my regiment after an exciting experience on the Wayfarer,” he wrote, “ I have been unfortunate in getting my left arm fractured from a kick from one of my officer’s chargers. I was visited by the veterinary officer, and on hearing that we were sailing again, I asked if I could go ; and, after consultation with my doctor, I was refused, much to my disappointment.”

Trooper Farndon wrote from the General Hospital at Bristol, where wounded soldiers who had been in the fighting around Ypres were under treatment. The men are chiefly suffering from shrapnel wounds, and state that it is the big guns possessed by the Germans that are doing all the mischief.

Since writing the above letter Trooper Farndon has been transferred to the Red Cross Hospital at Clevedon, Somerset, and his Rugby friends will wish for him a speedy recovery.

RECRUITING AT RUGBY.

The following have been recruited at Rugby during the past week :-E Barber, J H Bagworth, J Knight, J Lewin, C R Holmes, and G A Fuller, Rugby Fortress Company, R.E ; J R Wilson and W Clarke, Royal Engineers ; L W Taylor and J H Enticott, Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry ; F Gardner, F Massey, and H P Watts, R.W.R ; E Franklin, K.R.R ; P Nebb, 13th Battalion Glocestershire Regiment ; W W Walker and F Gardner, Northants Regiment ; C E Payne, A.S.C (Horse Transport) ; W H Martin and P M Ashwin, Grenadier Guards ; W E Flavell, 3/4 S.M Howitzer Brigade ; W Spraggett, J Woodhouse, B E Bates, and L Thompson, Rife J Brigade. Horse transport drivers between the ages of 40 and 45 and good wheelers are required for the Army.