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stevem

5 August 1914: Territorial mobilises

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stevem

Army Form E 635, Territorial Force, Embodiment, Notice to Join sent to 1536 Pte. G. Gosling RAMC to attend in Bath on 5 August 1914. The notice has the stamp of the 2nd South Western Mounted Brigade Field Ambulance.

post-32-1091661068.jpg

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stevem

The envelope it was sent in.

post-32-1091661234.jpg

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Tom Morgan

Interesting to see that the order is signed 5th August, the envelope is postmarked 5th August, and the soldier is required to present himself by 2.00 p.m. that same day. A reminder of the excellent postal service they had then.

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steve fuller
Army Form E 635, Territorial Force, Embodiment, Notice to Join sent to 1536 Pte. G. Gosling RAMC to attend in Bath on 5 August 1914. The notice has the stamp of the 2nd South Western Mounted Brigade Field Ambulance.

Hello Steve

Quick question mate; where did this come from please? Records or family keepsakes?

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stevem

Hi Steve

I bought the form and envelope, together with two other related items from an eBay auction last year.

Regards

Steve

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steve fuller

OK Steve, thanks mate. Worth asking!

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Ste

A town gears up...

Mr J.C. Balshaw sets about his order from the 1/5 South Lancs with zest. Having received the request at 8pm on Tuesday, he leaves for Manchester early in the morning, and arrives by 8am. Immediately the warehouse opens, he purchases the socks, shirts, pants and other items, before loading them onto a waiting ‘char-a-banc’, supplied especially for the occasion by ‘County Couriers (St Helens) Ltd’. The kit arrives at the Volunteer Hall by 3.30pm, to be distributed at 8.pm. This is a remarkably speedy piece of procurement.

'Its all in the game...'

The Territorials begin to colonise the Town Hall and Gamble Institute, as the Volunteer Hall is not large enough to accomodate the whole battalion, now mobilised. NCOs are billeted in the Advanced Art room of the Gamble, 'surrounded by casts of classic sculptures', prompting ribald remarks from the hirsuite tennants. Officers enjoy the more luxurious surrounds of the Mayor's parlour.

Asked how he is enjoying having to sleep on bare boards, a Private replies: 'Its all in the game.'

A journalist from the Reporter seeks entry into the Volunteer Hall, but meets with unexpected resistance from a zealous sentry. He witnesses the distribution of some stores, including 'trenching tools...with which a trench might swiftly be prepared', little realising the labours that lay ahead.

In a sign of things to come, the Army approach number of businesses and private individuals seeking to purchase their horses for military use.

The editor of the Newspaper & Advertiser strikes a thoughtful tone:

‘German civilisation, minus the military autocracy, is a splendid thing for the world. The Germans are a great people. If the Kaiser leads them to defeat, they will put an end to autocracy and then can begin a new ear of friendship between the great peoples of the west.’

St Helens Council meet, in circumstances the Mayor describes as more serious ‘than any since the Spanish Armada.’ The Council agree to the formation of a War Committee at borough level, and Ward Committees in each local area. Alderman Forster pays tribute the men of St Helens who have joined the colours, and extols the town to great efforts: ‘It devolves upon the members of this Council…to do our duty, in seeing that those they have left behind do not suffer as a result of their absence.’

Only 'Sintelliners'...

Councillor Forshaw praises the local spirit: we ‘are at war quite irrespective of party or class.’

It is doubtful that he knows of the Kaiser's recent words: ‘I see no parties – only Germans.’ The similarity refelects the common initial impact upon both societies, where public support for the war is broad, speedy and vocal.

Ste

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