September 1, 20158:57 amSeptember 8, 2015 8:35 am

The outbreak of war is always an excuse to introduce restrictions and control. During World War I, British beer was under attack on all fronts. An odd thing; it wasn’t the Germans who menaced John Bull’s foaming pint. It was sunk by Lloyd George our own war-time Prime Minister-to-be. Opening hours were limited to 11am till […]

George de Troetsel and family

A Belgian Refugee Family

August 25, 201512:29 pmAugust 25, 2015 12:33 pm

Belgian families fleeing the German invasion of their country began arriving in Britain very early in the war.  Communities around Shropshire met to make plans to help these refugees. On 11th September 1914 at a meeting of the Relief Fund in Much Wenlock, the gentry from Wenlock Abbey offered one of their houses in the […]



August 4, 20151:29 pm

When the armies of Europe went to war in August 1914 they did so in headgear of cloth or leather. Much as they would have done for the previous 50 years. Since I came upon a battered British First World War Brodie helmet (designed and patented by J L Brodie in 1915) in a disused-quarry-cum-rubbish-tip […]

D Coy, 4th KSLI Ironbridge.

D Coy, 4th KSLI leaving Ironbridge.

August 4, 201510:53 amAugust 4, 2015 11:04 am

At the outbreak of war the first soldiers to be mobilised were members of the Regulars – full time soldiers, and Special Reserve and Territorial Battalions made up of part time soldiers. This photograph shows D Company, 4th Battalion, Kings Shropshire Light Infantry which consisted of Territorials from the Ironbridge area. These men were mobilised on […]


Wilfred Owen: Tracks to the Trenches

July 14, 201511:18 amJuly 14, 2015 2:56 pm

Part Two: The Tracks THE LOCOMOTIVE DEPARTMENT MEMORIAL Shrewsbury Station’s own links to the First World War are equally moving. The most intimate, in that it is from their workmates, is located in the staircase of the Arriva offices. Although it is not normally accessible to the public, thanks to the untiring efforts of Philip […]


Wilfred Owen: the Tracks to the Trenches

July 14, 201510:49 amJuly 14, 2015 11:26 am

Part One: Wilfred Owen The essay for Shrewsbury Technical School merited 17/20 with the comment “You would have done better to keep to the 3rd person.” Today, it reads rather pompously from someone aged only fifteen. “The first striking impression on entering one of our large stations at a busy time is the number of […]


Helping our Wounded Tommies

June 15, 201511:34 am

‘A novel way of helping our wounded tommies’ is the hand-written caption on the bottom of this photograph of Albert Brazier and Richard Davies, two of the gardeners at Wenlock Abbey. They are seen wrapping up plants grown at the Abbey to sell as part of Lady Milnes Gaskell’s efforts to raise money for the  wounded […]


Great War Remembrance Service 8 April 2015

April 16, 20159:19 amApril 16, 2015 9:23 am

These men were remembered at the St Chad’s memorial service on the 8th April 2015. Driver Charles Jones, Regimental ID T4/070482, of the Army Service Corps died on the third of April. He is remembered on the Bridgnorth memorial. Private Walter Harold Overson, Regimental ID 27432, of the Royal Army Medical Corps died on the fourth […]


Extract from the Shrewsbury Chronicle

April 9, 20151:00 pm

Friday, March 12, 1915 200,000 New Laid Eggs. Wanted weekly for our Wounded Soldiers and Sailors, with full approval of the War Office, for the national Egg Collection Depot. Open Wednesdays and Saturdays. Mrs. Goodwin Preece, Claremont Street, Shrewsbury. The British Spirit – A parishioner of St. Michael’s, Shrewsbury, who is serving at the front, […]


“The bravest sailor I ever met”

March 30, 201510:10 amMarch 30, 2015 10:13 am

Beneath the war memorial in Stanton Lacy churchyard [SO 495 788 off the B4365 northwest of Ludlow] is a very special plaque to one of Shropshire’s First World War VCs. “In honoured memory, Able Seaman William Charles Williams VC Royal Navy, who gained his country’s highest award for valour on 25th April 1915 at Gallipoli. […]

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