Tag Archives: Somme

Sutton’s Somme campaign casualties

In my last post I listed the 38 men from Sutton and the surrounding area who lost their lives on 1st July 1916. On Remembrance Day, as the centenary of the end of the Somme campaign approaches, I thought it … Continue reading

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Sutton and the Somme, 1st July 1916

Like communities up and down the country, Sutton and the surrounding area were hugely impacted by the Battle of the Somme. Ten men from Sutton (representing 2% of the names on Sutton memorial) and 20 from Carshalton (8% of the … Continue reading

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“The whole attack had been a most costly failure” – The 1st Queen’s 15th July 1916

The average shopper in Guildford may be forgiven for not paying a visit to the church of Holy Trinity at the top of the High Street. The attention of those who do venture down the path at the side of … Continue reading

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Reflections of a Rifleman – Part 4

“A Chiel’s amang you takin’ notes and, faith, he’ll prent it.” – Burns Our trek ended some few miles beyond the Belgian frontier at a camp of crude, draughty huts.  The whole district for miles around was full of such … Continue reading

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Reflections of a Rifleman – Part 3

Our Division being at length relieved, we retraced our steps across the immortal battlefields that compose the desolate wastes of the Somme, and after a brief halt at Albert we joined the battalion at the little French village of Francevilliers. … Continue reading

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Reflections of a Rifleman – Part 2

Albert in peace times, I should think, was a fairly prosperous town. Now it is merely a heap of ruins, the railway station being about the best preserved structure. The most remarkable feature is the modern red cathedral, nearly battered … Continue reading

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From Yeoman to Tunneller

My final post on the MacDuff family’s war experiences focuses on Donald MacDuff. Son of Peter and younger brother of William, Donald had a very interesting army career. On the face of it his war record seems quite strange; he … Continue reading

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‘The Colonel’ – My Great Great Grandfather in the Black Watch

In previous posts I have written about my search for details of my Great Great uncle, William Brown MacDuff, who was killed in Belgium in December 1917. However as I started looking into my family tree in more detail, it … Continue reading

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February battlefield trip – part 2

On the second day of our trip we departed south from Ypres. Thick mist enveloped the countryside and visibility was minimal, and we wondered what it must have been like manning the trenches in similar conditions. Our first stop was … Continue reading

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Australia on the Western Front

What better way to kick off my blog than to talk about my recent visit to the Somme. Last time I went there I had the luxury of five days spent on the battlefields, walking the ground the troops attacked … Continue reading

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