Great War

1916. The Somme - ‘Such High Hopes’.

Great War 9

With 420,000 British casualties, The Somme was a massacre. On the first day alone 60,000 fell, 20,000 of them dead. Almost two thirds of all officers to die during the battle fell on that first day in July 1916.

1915. A Hero of Loos

Great War 8

Reeling from the disaster at Gallipoli and with no decisive advances on the Western Front, French Marshal Joseph Jacques Césaire Joffre offered a solution with a campaign in Artois to force the Germans back.

1914. To War With A Lance.

Great War 3

In military folklore, a cavalry charge is something glorious. In reality, it was a filthy, harrowing business for horse and rider alike. Jack Laiste of Birmingham was a 17-year-old lancer, proudly riding off to war on his charger, Queenie. It was November 1914 in a country lane in Northern France. All was quiet. The sun was shining. He recalls:

The Great War Remembered: August 4, 1914. The First World War Begins.

Great War WEB1

It was another world. In her warm, cosy flat in Wolverhampton, 95-year-old Clarice Onions casts her mind back to the long, hot summer of 1914. George V was on the throne. Herbert Asquith was Prime Minister. Little Clarice’s father Thomas Ricketts was a 27-year-old railway worker and a former soldier, still on the reserve list.