100 Years Ago Today

A History Of Events And Happenings From Exactly One Hundred Years Ago

A Letter From The Front Lines

On January 5, 1915 Mr Oswald Blunden, an officer in the Honourable Artillery Corps, writes as follows to Mr Noble, of the Broomhill Collieries :

Boxing Day

Your parcel of chocs reached me in the firing line this evening,and the contents and the good wishes enclosed have already cheered my heart. We are now having a spell of six days in the trenches, and the weather has decided to be seasonable. Christmas Day was cold and gray and a glorious change from what we have had. All today it has been snowing hard. It’s a wee it ‘parky’ now and again, especially about four or five in the morning. It’s nice to get up, but taking it all round, the cold knocks the mud into a cocked hat. At the moment I’ve got four hours watch on, and have to post sentries and see that they are rt every now and again. One must not sleep during this time and so in between the rounds I am knocking off a few ??. Perhaps you have heard how we spent our Christmas Day. It was the most extraordinary thing possible – mixing up and holding long talks with the enemy out in the open and not a shot fired on either side. I got a jolly good German helmet which I am going to try and send home when we get back to billet. There are two of us in my dug-out in the trench and the way I have to twist myself into knots all the time is a sight for the gods. Now is the time when I would like to be 2ft 6in and not 6ft 2in. Expect you will have heard all the news.

Men of the 1/1st Battalion, Honourable Artillery Company in F2 trench at Lindenhoek (near Kemmel, south of Ypres)

Men of the 1/1st Battalion, Honourable Artillery Company in F2 trench at Lindenhoek (near Kemmel, south of Ypres)

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