Wood, Arthur William. Died 10th Jun 1917

Arthur was the son of Joseph Wood and Annie Hill who were married in Rugby in 1889. Joseph came from Ashton in Makerfield, Lancashire, and Annie from Harpenden, Hertfordshire. Joseph was an engine driver and had been in Rugby since at least 1869, at Union Street in 1871 and 1881 and 31 Charlotte Street in 1891.

Arthur was born at 31 Charlotte Street in 1896 and baptised at St Andrew’s Church on 19 March.   Annie was Joseph’s second wife; his first wife Jemima Shaw born Braunston Northants, whom he married at Rugby in 1869, died aged 42 in 1887 in Rugby. They had a number of children. In 1901 Joseph was still living in Charlotte Street with his second wife and their three young children Adelina, Dora and Arthur as well as son Ernest from his first marriage. By 1911 Joseph had moved to 153 Grosvenor Road, Annie had died (in 1903), Dora was no longer at home, and there was another child Marjorie born in 1901 as well as Ernest, now a labourer aged 23.

Arthur enlisted in 1915 as Private 11083 in the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry and was sent to France in May of that year. He was transferred to the 33rd Company Machine Gun Corps (Infantry) as Private 19891, and was killed in action in France in 1917. He has no known grave, and is commemorated on the Menin Gate at Ypres.

He was awarded the Victory and British War medals and the 1915 Star. His effects, £20 plus a war gratuity of £13 were sent to his sole legatee his half brother George Wood, an engine fitter, who took out letters of Administration in Birmingham in October 1917.

 

RUGBY REMEMBERS HIM

11th Dec 1915. Christmas Mail

CHRISTMAS MAILS AND PARCELS.

The Postmaster-General has issued a notice regarding the posting of Christmas mail for the British Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders.

To secure delivery on or before Christmas Day letters must be posted not later than December 17th, and parcels not later than December 13th. Military exigencies render it necessary to limit the amount of parcel traffic for the troops during the Christmas season, and the public are enjoined to limit the use of the parcel post to articles of real utility. Fruit, perishable articles of all descriptions, bottles, pudding basins, and the like are prohibited, and will not be accepted for transmission. The maximum weight for a single parcel will be reduced to 7lb as from December 1st. All parcels must be completely and fully addressed, with the name and address of the sender on the outside, and securely and strongly packed in covers of canvas, linen, or other strong material.

Parcels not meeting these requirements are unlikely to reach their destination safely, and if observed in the course of post, will be returned to the senders.

HOW TO RELIEVE PRESSURE.

Many thousands of Post Office servants have joined the colours, and many thousands are joining in response to the appeal which the Postmaster-General has just made.

It is difficult already (says an official statement) to maintain a prompt despatch and delivery of letters and other postal packets. It may become impossible to do so unless the public assist by posting letters or other packets as soon as they are ready for despatch, and by refraining from holding them over until every thing can be posted in one consignment just in time for collection and despatch by night mails. It would be of especial assistance if large batches of letters or circulars, or parcels or any other postal packets, could be handed in before midday, or, at all events, early in the afternoon, whenever possible.

Enquiries and purchases at post offices should be made early in the day. and the number of transactions should be reduced by purchasing stamps, postcards, and other stationery in large quantities at one time.

CHRISTMAS PUDDINGS FOR RUGBY SOLDIERS.

The result of the appeal for Christmas puddings for Rugby men serving with the colours has been very gratifying. No fewer than 436 puddings have been supplied, and those who have assisted in the scheme may be sure their kind thought and generosity will be appreciated.

In larger and smaller quantities the puddings have been sent to twenty-six detachments at home and abroad, and the list shows in what a variety of units Rugby men are known to be serving. Amongst the chief consignments were the following :—

1st Warwickshire Yeomanry. British Mediterranean Force, per Reg Sargt-Major J Tait, 20 men ; 1/5th Warwicks (Howitzer) Battery. British Expeditionary Force, per Batt Sergt-Major G Hopewell, 5 officers and 143 N.C.O’s and men ; Coventry Battery. 5 men ; Headquarters Staff. 4th South Midland (Howitzer) Brigade, British Expeditionary Force, per Sergt-Major Taylor, 11 N.C.O.’s and men ; Ammunition Column, 48th Division, per Sergt Morten, [?] N.C.O’s and men ; 2/4th Warwick (Howitzer) Battery, Essex per Sergt Deakin, 16 N.C.O’s and men ; Ammunition Column 2/4th South Midland (Howitzer) Battery, per Quartermaster-Sergt Bennison, 6 N.C.O’s and men ; 2/2nd South Midland F.A Brigade, Great Baddow, per Driver H J Cleaver, 4 men ; 1/7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment, British Expeditionary Force, per Company Quartermaster Sergt Tomlinson, 11 men ; 2/7th Ditto,per Sergt-Major Cleaver, A Co. 10 N.C.O’s and men ; B Co, 3 men ; C Co. 30 N C.O’s and men ; D Co, 3 N.C.O’s ; 3/7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment. Coventry, per Sergt Smith, 11 N.C.O’s and men ; 81st Prov Battalion, Essex, per Company Quartermaster-Sergt Fawcett, 65 N.C O’s and men ; 3/4th Battery, Bristol, 150 men ; Recruiting Depot at Coventry, per Capt Thomas, 3 men ; and Rugby Fortress Co, Buxton, per Capt Kempson, 24 puddings.

Puddings have also been sent singly to other Rugby soldiers. The parcels have been so apportioned that each man will receive 1lb weight of pudding, and there are well over 700 Rugby soldiers to share in this seasonable gift.

We understand there is urgent need in the trenches for what are known as “ Tommy’s cookers.” These cost 3/6 each, and the committee are making an effort to raise funds to send out a number, in addition to other things that it is known will prove acceptable to those who have gone out from Rugby homes to fight our country’s battles.

RUGBY CHAMBER OF TRADE.

The monthly meeting of the members was held at the Town Hall, Rugby, on Monday last, Mr J Reginald Barker (Chairman of the Chamber) presiding.

The Chairman stated that a deputation from the Chamber had waited upon the Postmaster of Rugby, with a view to postal facilities being given to the public, either by the reopening of the High Street Post Office, or the opening of another office in that district, and that the Postmaster intimated that, for reasons of economy, it was not possible for this to be done.

The Secretary (Mr H Lupton Reddish) read a letter received from the Postmaster, notifying the Chamber that, to enable the work of the Post Office to be carried on as efficiently as possible with a greatly depleted and constantly decreasing staff, and also in the interests of economy, it was proposed to abolish one of the present deliveries of letters in the town, and asking for an expression of opinion from the Chamber. The matter was fully discussed, and it was resolved to suggest to the Postmaster that the 7 a.m delivery remain as at present, that the 10.35 a.m delivery be abolished, and that the 5.0 p.m. delivery be accelerated so as to place at 4.0 p.m, which would catch most of the mails at present falling into the 5.0 p.m delivery.

The Secretary also read a copy of a letter received by the Clerk to the Rugby Higher Education Committee from the Director of Education at Warwick, suggesting, on the advice of the Home Office, the establishment of classes for the training of girls and women in commercial work. It was felt that in a town like Rugby this was not necessary, and a resolution was passed to that effect.

It was decided by the members to keep their shops open all day on the Wednesday before Christmas, and to close them on the night of the 24th inst. until the following Tuesday morning.

In view of the war, it was resolved that the annual dinner be not held.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Bombardier Gordon G Hadley, R.F.A, of Abbey Street, Rugby, has been invalided home from the Dardanelles suffering from dysentery.

In a recent football match played at Malta a Rugby team proved the victors. The whole of the team was drawn from former pupils of St Matthews and Murray Schools.

HOME ON LEAVE.

Pte Fred Wood, son of Mr W F Wood, hatter, of the Market Place, Rugby, and a member of the Rugby Volunteer Fire Brigade, has just been home for five days’ leave. He belongs to the South Midland Division Cycle Corps, and has been at the front since February. Campaigning with him has not been a “ bed of roses,” and he has had narrow escapes, but is fit and well, notwithstanding his hard experiences.

OLD MURRAYIAN ON THE “ MERCURY.”

We cull the following extracts from an article entitled “ Us,” which appears in the current issue of “ The Mercury,” the official organ of the Training Ship Mercury, relating to an old Murrayian, son of Mr D Merrett, who gained a scholarship entitling him to training on the ship :-

Merrett (“ A ” 2)—One badge. “ Euge ” has been in charge of the dining-hall for many weeks. A big, strong, capable boy. Plays the cornet well. A very good swimmer. As the saying goes, he is “ worth his place ” in any side. He keeps goal for the first XI. A very good bugler. His head is screwed on right. He himself is fully aware, when he works or takes charge, what result he is aiming at. “ Euge,” will you, with your quiet manner, stick to it and make a fine working hand for England ? Takes responsibility well. He can box ; it all helps. He is tall ; his eyes are brown.

The same article also refers to McMeeken (“ C ” 1), another old Murrayian on the ship, of whom it says : “ He is slow, but can work well. Should arrange to keep quiet, steady, and never give advice. Swims well.”

FOOTBALL AND GOOD TEMPLARY AT THE DARDANELLES.

MEMORIES OF “ DEAR OLD RUGBY.”

Sergt Reed, of the 1st Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, is still at the Dardanelles, and writes very interesting letters to his friends in the homeland.

Mrs Keen, of 2 Winfield Street, with whom he and Sergt Mudd were billeted early last year, got a letter the other day in which he speaks of the requisiton of a brass band. “ When sitting outside our dug-out, or going for a quiet stroll, one fancies he is sitting in the Park at dear old Rugby,” he says; and adds, “ It is perfectly safe at night, as the Turks never attempt to fire a shell after dark.”

Sergt Mudd is in the Beech Hospital, Holyhead, and is looking forward hopefully to Christmas leave, providing inflammation does not set in again, and, after visiting his home, he intends spending a day or two at Rugby, where he made so many friends amongst Temperance people. He has forwarded a letter received from Sergt Reed, from which we make the following extracts :-

The Turks made an attack two nights ago, but with the usual result. None ever reached our trenches, and very few reached their own again, three lines of dead men lying between the two firing lines the following morning. The system of working the reliefs is greatly improved. We do four days in the firing line, four in support or reserve, and then go back to our winter quarters for eight. . . . I am sure you would be quite surprised if you could just see this place now. To see them playing football in the afternoon, hardly two miles behind the firing line, one would almost forget we were in a hostile country, and all in full view of the hill. Our fellows beat the K.O.S.B’s one nothing, after playing extra time yesterday afternoon, in the Peninsula Cup. We have also got a band and a corps of drums, so there is plenty of music every night. I often wonder what the Turks must think when they hear the band playing every night, and the drums playing retreat. I am pleased to say the Good Templar Lodge is still going strong. I have had two sessions since coming back from the firing, and initiated four more members. Bro Stevenson . . . was telling me this morning that he has got another fifteen or sixteen candidates for initiation. so we are not doing too badly. “ Limber ” Lyons is back with us again, and is of great assistance to me in carrying out the Initiation Ceremony. A vote was taken some time ago in the Battalion as to whether we should have cocoa or rum, but unfortunately we lost. However I don’t intend “ giving them best ” yet.

RECRUITING RUSH AT RUGBY.

MARRIED MEN IN THE MAJORITY.

The great recruiting boom which has set in all over the country during the past few days spread to Rugby, and the scenes witnessed daily at the Drill Hall in Park Road this week are reminiscent of the enthusiasm of the early days of the war, and affords proof that the eligible men of Rugby are determined that the town shall not lose the excellent reputation for recruits which it secured last year.

Throughout the week there has been a constant stream of men of all classes and ages anxious to enrol either for immediate service or under Lord Derby’s group system, and the officials have been working at high pressure from early morning till late at night.

The boom reached its height on Thursday, when the accommodation of the Drill Hall was taxed to the uttermost, and it was found necessary to attest a number of men without submitting them to medical examination, although all men, so far as possible, were so examined.

Valuable clerical help is being rendered by ladies, mainly school teachers ; and men who are ineligible for military service.

Despite the fact that members of the Parliamentary Recruiting Committee visited some of the rural centres and attested several hundred recruits, the crush was so great at Rugby on Thursday that men were being attested at midnight, and there was another rush early on Friday morning.

We understand that the single men are still hanging back, and that the majority of those who have been attested during the past few days are married.

To-day (Saturday) is the last day upon which recruits can be received for the Group System.

A COUNCILLOR’S EXAMPLE.

Mr Harry Yates a member of the Urban District Council, and Secretary of the Rugby Trades and Labour Council, has enlisted under the Group System.

FOUR SONS ENLISTED.

Two sons of Mr J E Cox, of Long Lawford, “ J. P. and E E,” have this week enlisted under Lord Derby’s scheme. Two other sons enlisted in the Warwickshire Yeomanry at the commencement of the war, and have been at the Dardanelles for some time. Trooper F W Cox has been suffering from dysentery, but is now better, and is at Cyprus ; and his brother, Trooper G H Cox, is ill with jaundice at Lemnos. All Mr Cox’s sons of military age have now enlisted.

COVENTRY MUNITIONS TRIBUNAL.

Coventry Munitions Tribunal sat on Friday afternoon last week at the Labour Exchange, Coventry, under the chairmanship of Professor F Tillyard. The assessors were Messrs T Nettleton (for the men) and H F L Hemmings, Rugby (for the employers), and also present were Messrs P E Wilks (clerk) and D G Bolland (assistant clerk).

TWO DAYS’ FESTIVITY.

The B.T.H., Rugby, brought complaints against two of their workmen for breach of the regulations by absenting themselves from work—the defendants being Francis Horner, Barby, near Rugby, and F W Chatland, 23 Spring Coventry.

“ When I got home,” said Homer, “ I found my brother home from the front for the time for twelve months.”

The Chairman : And you took two days of to have a festive time ?—Yes, sir, a day and a half.

The Chairman : The least you could have done was to let the firm know your intentions.

It was stated that defendant had an excellent record for timekeeping.—The Court found the defendant guilty, and adjourned the case, imposing no penalty.

Chatland stated that he was ill, but it was pointed out that he did not notify the firm. He was fined 10s.

Belgian Refugees.

As it was now a year since the Rugby Relief Committee undertook the care of Belgian refugees and appointed a sub-committee to deal with them, to the sub-committee it seemed well to give a short account of what had been done. Last autumn, No 17 Hillmorton Road, lent by Mr Kittermaster for six months rent free, was prepared by the sub-committee and many other helpers for a party of refugees. All the furniture was given or lent, sheets for the beds and towels being almost the only things which had to be bought. Twenty-eight refugees arrived there and were comfortably established at the end of October. At first they were entirely supported by the Relief [ Fund,*but after a time, when the men began to work, fresh arrangements were made, and for many months now all wage earners had been self-supporting. They were allowed to have the house at half rent by the landlord, and were keeping themselves without any help from the committee at all. Some time last summer there were disagreements among the different families, and two sets of relations were moved out into other lodgings* furniture being chosen for them from No 17 Hillmorton Road. These two groups had still to be helped, but they also were to a large extent self-sup-porting, two women and one man being in regular work. In October also the Old Girls’ Welcome Club was lent rent free for six months by Mr Hawksley and furnished by another section of the committee, and though there was more difficulty in finding suitable occupants, owing to a lull in the flow of refugees, finally a family was installed there, and were given weekly help for a time till they also were able to pay their way. Besides these two main sources of expenditure, the committee had helped two Belgian workmen by buying them compasses for their work, and they had bought tools for a Belgian boy. They had purchased clothes for several needy families, helped Belgian soldiers in various ways, paid fares back to London for working-men and their families, and had tried to help others by advice and visits. They were allowing 6s a week to a workman whose wages were insufficient to support his family in lodgings, and they were giving 2s a week towards the maintenance of a boy who was beginning on small pay at the B.T.H. There were several other homes for refugees in Rugby, but no account could be here given of their work, as they were not under the management of the Central Committee.

The balance-sheet submitted showed that the receipts were :—Donations, £380 11s 9d ; weekly receipts, £51 1s 9d ; refugees’ contribution to rent, £21 10s ; total, £453 3s 6d. The payments were weekly cash to No 17 Hillmorton Road, £171 13s 1d ; ditto to Newbold Road, £23 16s 3d ; rent of 17 Hillmorton Road, £25 ; Urban District Council rates, £3 13s ; poor rates, £3 13s ; coal account, £10 6s ; Marsh (tools), £1 14s 11d ; Over (compasses, etc), £2 14s 6d ; railway fares paid, £7 10s 1d ; allowances to Belgians, cost of lodgings, etc, £35 13s 7d ; advertising and sundry expenses, 16s 4d ; cheque books, 9s 6d ; balance in hand, £166 3s 3d ; total, £453 3s 6d.

Mrs BRADBY said they had given a rather fuller report because they thought it possible subscribers might not know what had been done, and it might be advisable for them to know through the local Press. Their weekly outgoing at present in the way of relief was very small indeed—only about 12s a week—the majority of the refugees being now self-supporting.

The CHAIRMAN said it was very satisfactory. He thought the committee would like him to thank Mrs Bradby for the excellent report and for the work she and the other members of a very small committee had done in connection with the, Belgian refugees. He knew they gave many hours and a great deal of thought to looking after the refugees, and the report was a very excellent one.

RUGBY TOWN V.A.D. AUXILIARY WAR HOSPITAL.

The Hospital was opened on Wednesday last, when four from the First Southern General Hospital, R A.M.C.T., Edgbaston, were met at the station by officials of the Red Cross Society and the Order of St John, and taken to “ Te Hira.”

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

A SOLDIER’S UNPLEASANT EXPERIENCE.

SIR,—Thinking that some one or other of your ten thousand subscribers may suggest or supply a remedy for what seems a grievance, I crave your indulgence for the narration of what follows.

A war-worn soldier of Kitchener’s Army, who had enlisted at Rugby in the early enthusiastic days, arrives back in the small hours of the morning, Saturday—Sunday, at the L. & N.-W. Railway Station.

He is home for a few days’ leave, his destination being some place for which he has to change at “ Rugby Junction.”

He asks for a cup of coffee at the Refreshment Booms, tendering therefore a 10/- note. The cup of coffee was withdrawn across the counter, change for the note not being authorised or available.

The L. & N.-W. Railway Company do not allow soldiers to remain in its station under the circumstance in which this soldier found himself, and he was left to wander up and down Rugby’s streets for the hours till the departure hour of his connecting train. Is there no remedy ?—Yours faithfully,

CHARLES DICKENS.

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.

 

22nd May 1915. Casualties of the War

ANOTHER RUGBY MAN MISSING.

Mr and Mrs J Wood, of 85 Oxford Street, have received news from the front that their son, Rifleman Leslie Wood, of the Rifle Brigade, is missing. His regiment was engaged in severe fighting in the neighbourhood of Hill 60 on Sunday, May 9th, and after the battle he failed to respond to the roll call, and his fate is, at present, uncertain. Rifleman Wood joined the army in August last, and was drafted to the front about ten weeks ago. He was 21 years of age, and previous to joining the army was employed, in the Controller Factory of the B.T.H. He was a former member of the Holy Trinity Church Choir, and was also a member of the Church Troop of Boy Scouts, in which organization he took a great interest. He is a nephew of Mr W E Robotham, vice-chairman of the Rugby Board of Guardians.

PAILTON.

KILLED IN ACTION.-Much sympathy is felt with the Rev W E and Mrs Jackson, who received the news on Friday last week of the loss of their second son, Second-lieut E P Jackson, 3rd Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, but attached to the 1st Battalion South Wales Borderers, killed in action. Lieut Jackson was a young man of great promise and very highly spoken of by his brother officers. Before joining the Army he was pursuing his legal studies, and after he had graduated at his college he intended to take up law as his profession. He seemed to have a peculiar aptitude for legal decisions. His College authorities, as well as his military authorities, speak in the highest terms of his work. All will regret that a young life of such promise should be out off after just having attained his majority.

HILLMORTON.

SERGEANT H. H. HANCOCKS KILLED AT HILL 60.

Mr and Mrs J Hancocks, of Hillmorton Locks, have received the sad mews that their third son, Sergt Herbert Harold Hancocks, of the 3rd Battalion King’s Royal Rifles, was killed in action at Hill 60 on April 26th. Sergt Hancocks, who was 25 years of age, had been in the Army eight years, seven, of which had been spent abroad in Crete, Malta, and latterly India. He was present when the dastardly attempt to assassinate the Viceroy, Lord Hardinge, was made, and some of the scraps of metal from the bomb were embedded in his helmet. He also assisted in lifting Lord Hardinge from the elephant, and was present at the great Durbar. He finished his term as a soldier in July last, but owing to the outbreak of war was unable to return home. His regiment landed in England in November, and proceeded to the front a few days before Christmas. Before leaving for France he spent a few days with his family at Hillmorton. He was one of the best shots in the corps, for which he was awarded at modal. He was also a first-class signaller, and acted as instructor in this branch. An enthusiastic follower of local football, Sergt Hancocks informed his patents that he always looked out for the Rugby Advertiser reports of local matches. The accompanying photograph is reproduced from a group taken in India. Another son of Mr and Mrs Hancocks is serving in Kitchener’s Army.

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

Mr J C Brown, son of Mr J Brown, of North Street, Rugby, has received a commission as surgeon probationer in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserves.

Lieut-Col and Hon Col H Hanbury has been gazetted lieutenant-colonel of the 7th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

Mr Percy Read, of 86 York Street, who is a compositor at Messrs Frost & Sons, is leaving his work to join the Army. Mr Read was married about two years ago, and as an old Volunteer has been so impressed with the necessities of the military situation that he is giving up his employment and disposing of his home in order to do his “ little bit” for his country. We hope that his patriotic example will be imitated.

Some Royal Engineers were waiting at a railway crossing near Bletchley on Monday when a trainload of German prisoners captured in the Hill 60 fighting passed through. The latter, seeing the British soldiers, spat at them from the carriage windows and made insulting remarks. The Engineers disregarded the jeers, and remained standing at attention.

RUGBY MAN BADLEY WOUNDED.

Corpl F M Staines, 2nd Rifle Brigade, a son of Second Officer Staines, of the Rugby Fire Brigade, has been rather badly wounded. In a letter he states that on Sunday, May 9th, after a bombardment, they made a charge, and after they had captured three German trenches he was wounded in the left hip. He got back somehow, but while he was doing so he received another wound through the right thigh. This was at 6 a.m. on Sunday, and he had to lie where he was until 4 a.m on Tuesday before they could carry him in. He is now in hospital at Boulogne, where he states that he is receiving every attention, and where all are most kind. He concludes his letter with a request for the Rugby Advertiser.- A lady writing from the hospital states that Corpl Staines has undergone an operation, and that he is very plucky in bearing his wounds.

KINGS NEWNHAM.

It was with very great regret the news was received of the death at the battle of Ypres, on April 25th, of Pte Charles Hancox, of the 1st Royal Warwickshire Regiment. He was one of first from this village to enlist, and the first to fall in the service of his country. He was of a quiet, unassuming character, and was well liked by everyone. Charlie was a native of Long Lawford, and losing both his parents when he was quite a boy, he and his younger brother were taken to and brought up by the late Mrs Clark, of Kings Newnham, with whom they lived till her death two years ago. He proved himself deserving of all her kindness and care.

Before enlisting he worked for Mr W Dunn as a farm labourer. He went into the trenches on February 22nd. On Sunday evening, after the usual service, the Rector (Rev G W Jenkins) invited those who cared to stay to at memorial service in the Parish Church, where he was a most regular worshipper. Part of the Burial Service was read by the Rector, and the hymn, ” On the Resurrection morning,” was sung. The whole congregation remained to pay their last respect to this young soldier. He was 24 years of age. He had a very deep sense of his duty to his King and country. In a letter received from him, written shortly before his death, his concluding words were : ” Don’t worry about me; God knows best, and that is my hope.”

RUGBY FORTRESS COMPANY.

SIR,  – Lord Kitchener has told me that he needs 360,000 more men.

The War Office has asked the town of Rugby to raise a (Fortress) Company Royal Engineers, and a reply has been sent to the Secretary of the War Office to say that Rugby will raise this company.

The members of the recruiting committee, the leaders of the trades and labour organisations, and many others have done everything they can to put full information before the men. We are still short of about 60 men, especially bricklayers, blacksmiths, carpenters, and masons.

There are plenty of suitable men in Rugby who can join, and I ask them to do so at once in order that the training of the company may go on without any delay.

If man has good reasons for not coming himself, he ought to feel justified in asking others to join. If he does not feel justified in asking others to join, then I ask him again to consider the possibility of coming himself.-I am, sir, yours faithfully.

E W E KEMPSON (LIEUT).

0.C 22th Fortress Company, R.E.

During the past week the recruits have been drilling at the Howitzer Battery headquarters, and by their smartness and general aptitude for their work have surprised and delighted the experienced non-commissioned officers who are training them. It is hoped that the first batch will receive their uniform in the course of a few days.

RECRUITING AT RUGBY.

The following have enlisted during the past week at the Rugby Drill Hall :- E J Baker, A V Herbert, G E Manser, W V Ingram, W F Bloomfield, T H Lang, W T Boyce, W C Carrick, F G Turner, Rugby Fortress Company; T Holman, Staffords; A J Brett, R.A.M.C ;G J T Collier, Hants Regiment ; C A Bird, Leicestershires ; W H Hallam, Lincolnshire Regiment; E Harris, R.W.R ; J Dorman, L J Turner, and G Facer, Mechanical Transport. A.S.C.

THE WHITE FEATHER POSTCARD.

SIR,-I received a postcard through the post this morning with a white leather on and the following words: “ Stop playing with little boys ! Be a man ; play the game ; think it over.” It is generally a wise rule to pay no attention to anonymous letters ; but I think, perhaps, that the sender may be sincere, if ignorant, and I therefore propose to answer it.

Firstly, let me say that I spent four years with the Rugby Boy Scouts – years which cost me all my spare time and a considerable amount of money. I fail to see that I am to be condemned for doing voluntary work.

The following facts may possibly enlighten those who concern themselves with other people’s affairs :-

My business was founded by myself twelve years ago on a capital of £10, and has grown steadily owing to personal effort, until to-day we are handling about £17,000 a year in premiums. A year and a half ago a move was made to larger premises, and consequently heavier expenses were incurred. Six months later war broke out. During these eleven years I never had a salary, but have depended entirely on commission. There have been many anxious moments throughout that time, and the future is naturally very uncertain. Nevertheless, I immediately volunteered for active service in the Royal Flying Corps, armoured car section, or elsewhere, stipulating that I should be given the option of leaving the service at the end of six months. This was refused by the authorities. This insurance business is a personal one and dependent on me, and I see no reason I should be driven into bankruptcy, with the consequent dismissal of my staff and the failure of heavy obligation to some of my relatives.

The idea of sending me a white feather marks the sender as a fool. No one knows until he faces the great crisis whether he is coward or not. So far, any rate in the minor adventures of life, my nerve has not troubled me.

Finally, let me express my disgust at the action of a Rugby inhabitant who is capable of sending such an epistle through the post on a card. My only reason for dealing with the matter at all is to save the feelings of others to whom, no doubt, similar documents may be sent, I am not ashamed of my reasons, hence this letter, which I shall be glad to explain further if the sender has the courage to call at my office or write to me under his or her correct name.

I B HART-DAVIES.

3 Albert Street, Rugby, May 17th.

[Note: Lieutenant Hart Davies of the Royal Flying Corps was killed on 27 July 1917]

13th Feb 1915. Plum Puddings and Football

SOLDIERS’ “ PLUM PUDDING ” NIGHT.

Learning that troops billeted in the town had had no Christmas fare, the portion of the Fellowship Relief Committee managing the Soldiers’ Club at the Friends’ Meeting House decided to hold a “ plum pudding night ” on Saturday, at which a free distribution of plum pudding, mince pie, &c, should be made amongst all soldiers who cared to attend. For the occasion a marquee was hired and erected on the grass at the back of the Meeting House. This was illuminated be electricity and suitably furnished. Forty plum puddings, several of which had been reserved for birthdays, were given by friends interested in the scheme, in addition to hundreds of mince pies, celery, &c. Tea and coffee were dispensed ; a well-wisher from a distance sent a box of fine cigars ; the committee provided cigarettes ; and as something like 200 soldiers attended, and everything passed off well, the event was voted a great success. The Meeting House was too crowded for games after the spread, and so an impromptu concert was arranged by Mr John Gibson, the energetic and affable secretary. The Misses Mochrie, Miss Ward, Sergt Pools, Mr W Crooks, and Mr H W Edmundson rendered songs, and there was a little Christmas music. An amusing item was a recitation by Mr T Wilson. The President of the Club made a speech on ” The two kinds of religion in the world “ the false and the true .” Cheers were given for the soldiers, for the President, and for the committee, who had worked so hard to make the night such an unqualified success. As all the provisions sent in were not consumed. It was decided to have an “ aftermath spread.”

THE SOLDIERS AT FOOTBALL.

THE IRISH REGIMENT WIN THE RUGBY HOSPITAL CHALLENGE CUP (ASSOCIATION RULES).

As was expected, the meeting of the Irish and English Regiments stationed in the town to decide the destination of the Rugby Hospital Cup, on Saturday, produced a strenuously fought match on the Eastlands ground on Saturday, when, despite the wretched weather, there was a crowd of between 2,000 and 3,000 people, including a good mustering of men in khaki. From beginning to end the match, which resulted in the victory by 3 – 0 of the Irishmen, was remarkably, well fought out, and, although the treacherous state of the ground made accurate play difficult, both teams proved themselves masters of the game. As is usual when soldiers’ teams are opposed to one another, there was a good deal of vigorous play, but fouls were of very infrequent occurrence, and were much less common, in fact, than is often the case when two civilian teams meet. The English Regimental Band had arranged to play selections during the afternoon, but owing to the unpropitious weather this treat had to be foregone.

Mr T Arrowsmith carried the whistle, and the teams were :-English Regiment : Sully ; Redhead and Prosser ; Harker, Cowley, and Brown ; McMullen, Fitton, Chapple, Sheerer, and Riley. Irish Regiment : Leaming ; McGie and Skinner ; Sinclair, Ward, and Beswick ; Rice, Thacker, Collings, Bishop, and Lough.

At the commencement the English team, playing with rare dash and enthusiasm, did most of the pressing, and on several occasions they came very near to scoring, but Leaming was a safe goalie, and dealt with some difficult shots in a convincing manner. After about a quartet of an hour’s play the scene was transferred to the other end, where, after several ineffectual efforts, the Irishmen went ahead, Ward, their skipper, beating Sully with a peculiarly placed shot. The lads from the Emerald Isle returned to the attack and for a while gave the English defence a very anxious time. The defenders put up a stiff fight, however ; Prosser distinguishing himself again and again by his lightning returns. Sully also figured prominently in goal, and once, rushing out, saved a fine shot at the expense of a fruitless corner. Once or twice the Englishmen broke away, but they only threatened the Irish goal for very brief intervals, owing to the inability of their forwards to press home the attack and the excellent tactics of the Irish defenders. Just before half-time the indefatigable efforts of the Irishmen met with success, and Beswick beat Sully with a beautifully placed shot, at a terrific speed, which gave him no chance whatever, and the interval arrived with the Englishmen two goals down. The rain, which had cleared off for a while during the first half, again commenced in the second stage, and added considerably to the difficulties which each team was experiencing, and to a certain extent robbed the game of much of its interest. As in the first half, the Englishmen began the attack, and forced a corner. The ball dropped dead in the mouth of goal, and it looked for a second as though the lead would be reduced, when one of the defenders relieved with a mighty drive. Lemming was tested on several occasions, but proved safe at each time of asking. At the other end the Irishmen missed a fine chance of scoring, Thacket shooting over the bar with only the goalie to beat. A few minutes afterwards Sully cleared splendidly for the same player, and Collings hit the crowbar, and from the rebound sent by. The Irishmen continued to have the best of the play, and Thacker put the result beyond doubt with a good shot. This was the extent of the scoring, and the Irishmen will hold the cup for the coming year.

PRESENTATION OF THE CUP.

Immediately after the match the cup was presented to Ward, of the Irish Regiment, by the Officer commanding one of the regiments. In doing so, the gallant Colonel expressed the opinion that the cup had been richly deserved by the Irish team (applause}. Both teams had played a most sporting game under very exceptional circumstances, and it spoke well for the excellence of the football on both aides that the crowd had stopped, in such wretched weather, till the end. He remarked that each of the 22 men would receive a medal, which, if they wanted anything to remind them of Rugby, would do to. But the kindness they had received at Rugby was such that they could never forget. They would often look at those medals on even muddier, and, perhaps, bloodier, fields, and they would then think of their friends in Rugby (applause). He thanked the committee who had made those games possible.

Cheers were then given for the two teams, the gallant Colonel, and the residents of Rugby, and the hearty manner in which the military section gave the last-named, was proof of their appreciation of Rugby’s treatment of them.

We are informed that the meeting of the two soldiers’ teams on Wednesday, February 3rd, and again on Saturday, February 6th, was the direct outcome of the energies of the Rugby Hospital Cup Committee. The Hospital Cup is run by an independent committee, and the suggestion to invite the Town Club as well as teams from the soldiers billeted in Rugby was made by one of the members of this committee. The arrangements for the short, but very successful competition, were entirely carried out by Messrs Gordon, Pett, Pratt, Arrowsmith, Dunkley, Rogers, and Nightingale (acting hon secretary).

RUGBY MEN WOUNDED.

News has been received that Rifleman William Sheppard, of the King’s Royal Rifles, son of Mr T Sheppard, of 26 Corbett Street, has been seriously wounded at the front, presumably by shrapnel. Rifleman Sheppard, who went to the front with the Expeditionary Force from India in November, is in a military hospital at Boulogne, his injuries consisting of a shattered thigh.

Shoeingsmith A Wood, R.F.A, of Rugby has written to a friend at Bicester, stating that he has recovered from his wounds received in December, and returned to the fighting line.

Driver Jack Bonnick, A.S.C, of Wellesbourne, near Warwick, whose wife is staying at Bicester, Oxfordshire, was officially reported killed on Sunday morning. The War Office communication, which contained the usual sympathetic message from their Majesties, stated that his death took place on December 2nd. A similar communication (sent to a later address) was received on Tuesday. Evidently a mistake has been made, as Mrs Bonnick has received letters almost every week from her husband before and since December 2nd. By the same post that she received the first intimation of his death she also received a letter from him, enclosing a French money order. Enquires are being made. He has a brother, Mr George Bonnick, residing at Rugby.

RUGBY POLICEMAN WOUNDED.

Pte A H Nickolls, of the Gloucester Regiment, who previous to the war was a police constable at Rugby, paid a visit to the town last week. Pte Nickolls, who went to the front at the commencement of hostilities, has seen fighting at Mons, the Aisne, Ypres, and la Basse, and was wounded at the last named place in the abdomen and foot in December. He is now making good progress towards recovery.

OLD ST. MATTHEW’S BOY WOUNDED.

Another old St Matthew’s boy, Pte Arthur W Kendall, son of Mr W Kendall, of 40 Rowland Street, has been wounded at the front. In a brief but cheerful letter home he states that he was wounded by shrapnel in the right thigh on February 2nd, and spent the whole of his 21st birthday, February 3rd, in a Red Cross train. He does not believe his injuries to be severe. Pte Kendall, who has been in the 3rd Coldstream Guards for two years, has been at the front from the commencement of the war. This is his second spell in hospital, the first occasion being the result of an accident.

DISTRICT COURT MARTIAL AT RUGBY.

A military court martial was held at Rugby Police Court yesterday (Friday), the prisoner, Lance-Corpl Edward Wharton, of one of the departmental corps stationed at Rugby, being charged under section 15 of the Army Act with being absent without leave while on active service, at Rugby, on the 6th to 8th February.

Mr Harold Eaden, solicitor, Rugby, appeared for the defendant.

There were three other cases end the proceedings had not terminated at the time of going to press.

RECRUITING AT RUGBY.

About eighteen men have enlisted at Rugby this week. They are :-Army Service Corps : E W Elkins, W A Farndon, J Freeman, and J Daniels. R.F.A : A C Gilks, R W Payne, E J Read, and H A Dyson. R.A.M.O : J Clarke and W T Wilson. Oxon and Bucks Light Infantry : H T Morby and W Usher. Royal Engineers : D S S Foxley and W P Cleaver. King’s Royal Rifles : B L Paxton, Coldstream Guards : E J Gill and F Harris. R.W.R : W Warland (enlisted in 4th South Midland Howitzer Reserve Brigade since January 18th), J Turner, P Durrant, F Dale, G Walley, C Dashwood, R E Ingram, W Dale, A E Smith, A G Towill, C Rule, E W D Walton, C W Knight, A E Payne, and W J Allen.

9th Jan 1915. Local War Notes and Christmas at the Front

LOCAL WAR NOTES.

At the Rugby Cattle Market, on Monday next, Mr W Wiggins will sell by auction a sheep, which has been presented for the purpose, the proceeds of which will be given to the Belgian Relief Fund.

Mr R G S Anderson, of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, who was wounded, has now re-joined his regiment.

Mr P A Morson, son of Mr Arthur Morson, of Rugby, has joined the Foreign Service Battalion of the Honourable Artillery Company.

Sergt-Instructor Bird, of the Stores Department of the B.T.H Company, has been appointed to a commission in the Northants Regiment in connection with Lord Kitchener’s Army.

Mr C G Richards, late of Rugby, is now with Royal Army Medical Corps at Diss, in Norfolk, and he expects to sail for Egypt with a detachment of the Corps in a few weeks’ time.

H Welsby, T Lee, T Batchelor, and H Webber (Rugby), and C Batchelor (Hunningham) hare joined the reserve battalion of the 7th Royal Warwickshire Regiment. The battalion has now more than 1,000 men.

Mr C F E Dean, partner of Mr W G B Pulman, solicitor, Rugby and Lutterworth, has enrolled in the Public Schools Battalion attached to the Royal Fusiliers, and left to take up duty in London on Saturday.

RECRUITING AT RUGBY.

Recruiting still continues fairly satisfactory at Rugby. During the past week 36 men enlisted, the best day being Monday, when 15 came [?]d. So far the total for Rugby is 2,102.

AMUSING RECRUITING INCIDENT.

The recruiting officer in charge at the Drill Hall had an amusing experience on Wednesday morning. Two little boys from Pinder’s Lane-one aged 6 years 10 months and the other aged 7 years-presented themselves, and stated quite seriously that they wished to enlist as buglers, The sergeant, instead of informing the youngsters that this was impossible, entered into the spirit of the joke, got out the papers, and began to fill in the particulars. The would-be recruits expressed their willingness to join any corps to which they could be sent, and subsequently left the hall fully satisfied that they might at any be called to serve.

A SOLDIER’S THANKS.

Pte J T Meadows, of the 1st Northants Regiment, writes from the London General Hospital : ” Will you allow me space to convey my many thanks to the people of Rugby, who have so generously thought of me this Christmas and New Year, and who have made it so happy for me in my sufferings from terrible wounds received in action. The names of engagements I am unable to state, only the one where I was put out of action (Ypres). I regret to say my recovery is very slow. Through it all I remain quite happy.”

RUGBY SHUNTER’S NARROW ESCAPE.

S S Alfred Wood, of the 1st Artillery Division, who previous to being called up for active service was employed at Rugby L & N-W Railway Station as a shunter, in a letter to a friend says :-

“Things have been a bit rough at the front, but are a little better now. He was having a fortnight’s rest from the firing line, and it seemed quite a change to be away from the ‘ coal boxes.’ He was hit once, but it did not do any damage, the bullet going through his jacket and just grazing his back. One of his mates from Rugby got killed, and another had his eye taken out with a piece of shell at Ypres. In one passage he says: ‘ When we got back from the battle of Ypres they had completely blown the town to atoms. We were in a wood one day, and the

Germans started to shell us just us we were going to have a bit of breakfast—such as it was. One of our sergeants was having a wash, when over came a German shell and shot him dead. Five more were killed and wounded, and also about a dozen horses. So you see we have been through a bit. At the battle of the Aisne we had a rough time, losing nine guns out of eighteen in the Brigade and a lot of men. We lost two guns and about 40 men one day ; the Germans captured them and took them prisoners.”

KITCHENER’S RECRUIT AT THE FRONT.

Driver Jack Jones, son of Mr Rowland Jones, brewery agent, Claremont Road, who joined the new heavy battery, Garrison Artillery, in connection with Lord Kitchener’s Army, in August, was selected for the front early in November, and must have been among the first in Kitchener’s Army to go. He has written several letters home, in each of which he states that he is quite well. In one letter he says : “ Our guns have gone very well up to now, without a casualty, so I think we have been very lucky. I think we have to put all that down to the officers, because they are all very clever men. They know how to find the enemy, but the enemy has not found us yet, and I hope they won’t.” In another letter he says : “ Things out here are a bit quiet. We have been in action now about one month.”

HOW THE WARWICKSHIRE YEOMANRY SPENT CHRISTMAS.

At the time of the German raid on Scarborough the Warwickshire Yeomanry were stationed on the coast not a hundred miles from the scene of hostilities. General regret was expressed that their bit of the coast had not been selected for the attack instead of the Yorkshire coast.

A week before Christmas the regiment was moved from the coast to a few miles inland. The change was not appreciated, for the men are now quartered in a Little village of about 300 inhabitants, and five miles from any town. The last place they were at was about the size of Warwick, which, besides the ever-present attraction of the sea and shipping, boasted a couple of picture shows, and a hall where writing, &c, could be done. Also the men were billeted on private people, and consequently lived very well and had real beds to sleep in, which, after sleeping on bags of straw for the last few months, was Paradise. Army rations went down very badly after billeting for a month, after Christmas fare was a welcome break in the monotony of bread and meat and bread and jam. Most of the men are now billeted in empty houses, a troop to a house. Six or seven men occupy a room, and with the coming of Christmas hampers many enjoyable, if informal, dinners and teas were held. A whip round is made periodically for coal, and the same method was adopted to buy a couple of kettles. Some queer meals have been eaten lately ; pineapple chunks, pork pie, and cake and tea have provided many a meal, some of which have been breakfasts, others dinners or teas. Each room usually has its own store of small groceries, and every man ought soon to be a complete housekeeper. If one room is short of tea, it can often be obtained from the next by swapping a piece of coal for it. In the same way a couple of mince pies area equal to half a candle. The latter are indispensable articles of the men’s housekeeping, as there is no other means of lighting the houses, and friends sending parcels might with advantage slip a few in. A very pleasant Christmas was spent, each squadron having a real Christmas dinner, followed by a concert in the evening. Everyone enjoyed the Christmas spread, which was done in real style, turkeys, geese, roast beef, plum puddings, with fruit, nuts, and drinks ad lib. After living more or less on bully beef, this was a welcome change, and everyone enjoyed it to the full. The concert also was a great success, and was kept up till 10.30 p.m, a very late hour for soldiers, who on ordinary occasions must be in their billets by 9.30 p.m.

The regiment has been engaged in very interesting work and schemes lately, much of which has involved a good deal of cross-country riding.

A CHRISTMAS DAY TRUCE.

In a further letter home, Pte Sheasby says that on Christmas Eve they were ordered to some new trenches. We hadn’t been there many minutes before we started shouting the compliments of the season to the Germans, who were entrenched about 250 to 300 yards in fronts of us, and to our surprise they shouted back : “ Hello ! you English, if you won’t fire we won’t over Christmas ” ; so, of course, we shouted : “ All right; we won’t fire till you do.” Of course, the sentries were at their posts just the same ; but we felt more free, and hadn’t to keep bobbing down to miss stopping a bit of lead. At the same time we hardly expected them to keep to their word ; but there was not a shot fired that night by us or by the Germans opposite, although there was firing going on on our right and left. The next morning as soon as it got light and we had had breakfast, we took a walk through our barbed wire entanglements, and met them halfway between the two trenches. After hand-shakes and “ A Merry Christmas ” we exchanged cigars and cigarettes, and all had a chat and smoke together. I took a drop of whiskey, and we had a drink. They were very eager after the whiskey, you bet ; and they also seemed very eager after food too. . . Our officer came out and took our photograph, about 20 of us, Germans and British mixed together, and he has promised me one if he can get them away to be done. . . We fixed things up that neither side would fire on the other unless we were ordered to, and then we were to fire in the air until after Boxing Day ; but one of the Germans came over and volunteered the news that he had seen their orders, and that they were to make an attack on us that (Boxing night) at 12.15 p.m. Of course, we got prepared, and all stood to arms at about 11.30 with fixed bayonets, all at our posts, anxiously waiting for them. And then our big guns started to let them have it for a few minutes after that, and shelled their trenches for about three-quarters of an hour, dropping shells right into them. I think that must have put them off it and made them think that we were about to make another attack. Anyway, we stood to our posts till 2.30, and nothing happened.”

17th Oct 1914, Local War Notes

Among recent casualties is the name of 2nd Lieut F A Sampson (R. Fus), wounded and missing. Sampson represented both Rugby and Cambridge at racquets.

The King motored from Buckingham Palace on Tuesday to Epsom Downs, and there inspected the Public Schools Brigade, which several Rugbeians have joined.

Fireman Fred Wood, of the Rugby Fire Brigade, son of Mr W F Wood, Market Place, left Coventry on Tuesday morning last, where he has been training, to join his unit, the 7th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, at Chelmsford ; also Mr Tom Lane, son of Mr J H Lane, the Windmill Hotel.

According to statistics gathered by the “ Railway News,” it would appear that 11 of our railway systems have contributed over 35,000 men to the colours. The L & N-W Company has supplied 9,400, and the Great Central 1,300.

On Wednesday the King reviewed 20,000 Territorials of the South Midland Division in Hylands Park, Chelmsford. His Majesty was accompanied by General Sir Ian Hamilton and General Heath, commanding the division, to whom he expressed his pleasure at the physique and bearing of the troops.

The number of employees of the B.T.H Company now serving with the Colours is upwards of 1,000, and a complete list of these, with rank, regiment, number, and other particulars, will appear, in a special enlarged war issue of the “ Asteroid”—the organ of the B.T.H Social Club—which will be published this month.

LOCAL NAMES IN THE CASUALTY LIST.

Mrs F Bennett, of 8 Gladstone Street, New Bilton, has received news from her son, Driver Charles Bennett, Army Service Corps, that he is at present in Netley Hospital suffering from a bullet wound in the foot, received in France. He states that “ it is terrible at the front ” ; and adds : “ The French people are very good to us all.” Driver Bennett’s parents visited him on Tuesday, and he is progressing satisfactorily.

Pte A Phelps, Rifle Brigade, 11 Gladstone Street, New Bilton, is a prisoner in the hands of the Germans.

No further news has as yet been received of the three Rugby men, all members of the Royal Warwicks—Pte Walter Geo Goodman, Pte W Busson, and Lance-Corpl Hancox, who were reported as missing after the fighting round Ligny on August 26th.

The 7th Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment (including the Rugby Company) were under orders to move to Coggerstell yesterday (Friday) morning, and in doing so would have to march about 14 miles.

THE NEW WARWICKSHIRE BATTALION.

Steps are being taken to secure 600 recruits from Coventry and district for the 7th Home Service Battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment, which Colonel H J Nutt is raising. Recruiting for this commenced at 10 a.m on Monday at the following stations :—The Barracks, Coventry ; the Labour Exchange, Leamington ; the Law Courts, Nuneaton ; the Drill Hall, Rugby; the Town Hall, Stratford-on-Avon; and the men will be billetted at the Old Artillery Barracks, Coventry.

At Rugby, where Major A Welch has been in charge recruiting has been rather slow, only about a dozen having been accepted. We are asked to point out that all Rugby men joining will be placed in the same company, and at least 62 are required to complete the company now training at Chelmsford, but more than this number will be welcomed.

NECESSARIES FOR THE 9th ROYAL WARWICKSHIRE REGIMENT.

To the Editor of the Rugby Advertiser.

DEAR SIR,—I have been asked by Lieut Coates to make an appeal to provide for the Commanding Officer of the 9th Service Battalion of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment a fund for the supply of the many extras that the Government grants do not cover, such as the purchase of extra range finders, field glasses for picked men, and many other necessaries. A sum of £200 is required, and to meet this any donation sent to me shall be forwarded to the proper quarter.—Yours faithfully,

J J McKINNELL,

Chairman, Urban District Council,

Benn Buildings, Rugby, October 15th.

 

Messrs Sam Robbins, Ltd, have supplied the Northamptonshire Yeomanry (now stationed at Hurst Park, Winchester) with five “ Triumph ” 3-speed motor cycles, and also with 15 “ B.S.A.” bicycles. It is understood the motor cycles are for despatch work.

 

MAINTAINING BRITISH TRADITIONS.

Private J T Meadows, of the 1st Northampton Regiment , now serving in France (whose home is at Inwood’s Cottages, near Bilton Grange), has written stating that he is in the pink of condition. He adds : “ Times are getting better now, as you know that we are progressing favourably. The travels of the troops have been great, but the duty has been well done. The high traditions of the British Army are still maintained by the sons of many an anxious mother. Time will prove this. I suppose George and Herbert are still hard at work. Never mind ; one wing of the family is flying along. The weather is terribly hot in the day-time, but at night it is the extreme reverse ; but all these little hardships we look upon as nothing when such a prize is at stake. Four of us from Rugby are still all together.”

RUGBY YEOMANRY TROOP GETTING READY.

For some weeks past “ C ” Squadron (which includes the Rugby Troop) of the Warwickshire Yeomanry has been in training with the 1st South Midland Mounted Brigade at Newbury. It was understood that this week the Squadron would move out to Donnington Mill, about a mile from the Racecourse, All the local men are reported to be fit and well ; and having volunteered for active service, they expect in due time to embark for France, where it is presumed they will be required to assist in guarding communications.

RUGBY PRINTERS IN LORD KITCHENER’S ARMY.

Fredk Favell, a member of the Rugby Typographical Association, and formerly an employee of G Over, and who has joined the Royal Garrison Artillery, has written from Woolwich Common to the local Secretary, and says : “ It is a bit of a drop from Rugby rate to 7s a week, but I should not like to be walking about where the girls are six to one.” After stating that the food is rough, but plentiful, he goes on to say: “ We shave every morning now in cold water, and as there is only one small mirror for ten men in our tent, you can believe me when I say that one does not know whether he is shaving his own face or somebody else’s there are so many round the glass.” From a letter Mr Favell has Written to his fellow-workmen it would appear that he and his friend, Mr D Kennard, from the same office, are having a good time and are keeping in good health.

“ GIVING THE GERMANS ALL THEY WANT.”

Pte T Cockerill, of the Yorkshire Light Infantry, now serving with the Expeditionary Force, has written a card to his mother (Mrs Grumble, of 33 Gas Street), in which he says : “ I think things are going on the right road. It is so with our Brigade. We seem to be giving the Germans all they want, for every day we keep advancing, and that means a lot. We are getting plenty of good, food, and that is a lot more than the enemy can say. . . . Tell Harry I shall have a lot of pints to sup before I am straight up, as there is no such thing as beer here ; but if I do get down for Christmas we will make up for lost time.”