Jump to content
The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Second Line Trenches


Roy Evans
 Share

Recommended Posts

According to the War History of the 6th Battalion South Staffordshire Regt., in March 1916 the 2/6th were "detailed for work, instructional and practical, on the trenches and breastworks of the second line defences of London".

Does anyone know anything about these?

Roy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Roy,

would be interested to hear more about this and hopefully you get some meaningful replies, I have done a bit of research on the 2nd World War defences of London but I know nothing about the Great War defences!

Regards,

Scottie.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Roy

I read somewhere that there were quite a few trench systems around the UK,mostly built for training purposes,it was here on this Forum that I learned of a system to the east of London (Essex ?) used for that purpose,and more recently in Scotland (!) again for training purposes, this was near Invergordon.

If you do a bit of Googling you wil probably come across some instances.

Sotonmate

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There certainly are practice trenches dotted around - we have included some on the UK Great War Sites project - but to date none around London.

Brian

Kitchener's Field near Berkhamstead is the site of a training camp and of practice trenches - I am told that they are the earth works that you find between the car park (just across the road from the Memorial) and the Golf Course. I have changed the icon from the tent icon (post-22880-1236886175.gif)to the shovel icon (post-22880-1236886209.gif) and re-sorted it to lie beside the other practice trenches.

(I have added a "house/home" icon post-22880-1236886093.gif (to be distinct from the Factory icon post-22880-1236886116.gif), and a target icon (post-22880-1236886268.gif) for rifle ranges.)

David

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kitchener's Field near Berkhamstead is the site of a training camp and of practice trenches - I am told that they are the earth works that you find between the car park (just across the road from the Memorial) and the Golf Course. I have changed the icon from the tent icon (post-22880-1236886175.gif)to the shovel icon (post-22880-1236886209.gif) and re-sorted it to lie beside the other practice trenches.

David, your shovel is in the right place for Kitcheners Field. However, The Inns of Court memorial is about 3/4 mile away to the NE at the top of New Road. The training trenches are in the common on the north side of New Road in the last 200 yards or so before the memorial. (I went to school in Berko and often went running from the town up to the memorial. We frequently used the common for CCF activities and remember scrambling around the trenches.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

David, your shovel is in the right place for Kitcheners Field. However, The Inns of Court memorial is about 3/4 mile away to the NE at the top of New Road. The training trenches are in the common on the north side of New Road in the last 200 yards or so before the memorial. (I went to school in Berko and often went running from the town up to the memorial. We frequently used the common for CCF activities and remember scrambling around the trenches.)

Agreed, that marker has got well out of place; I have moved it back to near the car park. Thanks for pointing it out.

Are there further trenchworks a little before the top of the hill? I could see what looked like trench works in the wood (in the level bit) between the car park and the golf-course when I visited. I wondered whether there were further examples in the brambles just off the top of the hill.

David

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There may well have been. Its been some time since I had a poke around in that area. There is a book 'A History of Berkhamsted Common' which was published in the 1920s or 30s which did give the length of trenches dug. It was a surprisingly big number - something like 6,000 or 10,000 yards. I will try and dig out the reference.

Just to confuse things there is an ancient ditch called Grimms Ditch which crosses the common. I think it was post-Roman rather than pre-Roman and was some kind of boundary.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 months later...
According to the War History of the 6th Battalion South Staffordshire Regt., in March 1916 the 2/6th were "detailed for work, instructional and practical, on the trenches and breastworks of the second line defences of London".

Does anyone know anything about these?

Roy

Hi!

From "Peace, war and afterwards" by Brian Wade, He makes reference to digging these trenches while based at Green Street Green Bks near Orpinton, Kent. Have been told that these follow the old defensive line with the Mobilisation Centres from around 1860, that run from the Medway towns, on the high ground just inside the M25. There are also some above the Medway Towns with WW1 pillboxes, these were also incorporated in to the WW2 stop lines.

Regards

Kentish Man

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Saw a picture last month in the local Library newspaper archives of the Staffords digging trenches on Hampstead Heath.

Alan

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 weeks later...

Thanks for that link. I loved the "Your Country Needs You" section, in particular the trench digging photograph entitled "United Artists Volunteer Rifles". Presumably the caption writer was a film buff.

TR

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...