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Remembered Today:

Commodious Accommodation


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I came across a short entry in the 66th Brigade RFA HQ War Diary by the Commanding Officer, which may be of interest to Forum members.

Kind regards


Place: In the Field (Cape Helles)

Date: November 1915

Quarters Constructed and Occupied

Headquarters have moved into a commodious range of winter quarters, situated as before described, (EAST cliff of GULLY RAVINE, about 50 yards SOUTH of ARTILLERY ROAD, they moved around 27th November) and constructed on a terrace cut out of the side of a cliff, and built: walls of sandbags with window and door panes; the roof, for want of other material, being of Tarpaulins with wooden rafters. The whole very complete with fireplaces cut into the wall of sandstone rock. The comfort of Officers and men being met in every way. The simplicity and regularity of the architectural design of these quarters, and the comfort provided for, are the envy of the Peninsular.

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Fortunately they did not have to endure that sort of 'comfort' for too long

Those RFA WDs are proving a treasure trove, Alan; thanks for sharing

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The 66th Brigade RFA CO later records in November:

The weather during the first part of the month was mild and bright, but became cloudy and rainy during the latter portion culminating on the 27th from the North, in a severe blizzard lasting 3 days, during which time hard frost and snow were experienced, but, due to the protection provided, all ranks withstood this first, but severe test of winter with little inconvenience.

The War Diaries for the Batteries have a slightly different version of the same period.

A/66 17th November

A very heavy storm about 8.0pm washed out many of the dug outs. Proper overhead cover for the men's dugouts cannot yet be obtained, the plans issued over two months ago.

B/66 29th November

Very cold today and everybody very miserable.

D/66 29th November

Work on improvements to gun emplacements, & dug outs for the men has been carried out during the month, but as there is no roofing of any sort available, and not nearly enough sand bags it is difficult to make the men comfortable.

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