First World War
Second World War
Actions & Movements
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King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum
Colonel John de Cordova OBE
Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Warren (Chairman)
Lieutenant Colonel Peter Dew
Major Stephen Firth MBE
Mr John Hardy
Major Daniel Parsonage
Major James Welsh
Mr Paul Thompson
Mrs Sue Ashworth
(ex-officio County Museum Service)
Councillor Elizabeth Scott
(ex-officio Armed Forces Champion,
Lancaster City Council)
Peter Donnelly BA AMA – Curator
The museum is supported by Lancaster City Council and Lancashire County
Once again I am able to report another busy and positive year for the
Regimental Museum. Our 2016 Battle of the Somme Exhibition has been
followed by a 2017 exhibition to mark the Centenary of the White Lund
Explosion. On 1st October 1917 the Munitions Works at White Lund
Morecambe exploded with devastating consequences for the local
community. The exhibition about local people, both men and women, has
provoked much community interest about an incident initially concealed
from the public domain.
Next year is the 100th Anniversary of the end of the First World War.
Plans are now in hand for a further major exhibition. This will be our
fourth exhibition commemorating the First World War. Without the
financial help of the Sir John Fisher Foundation and the Army Museums
Ogilby Trust these endeavours would be impossible. The Trustees are very
grateful to both Charities particularly the Sir John Fisher Foundation
for its continued support.
This year the Trust Deed has been updated with the Charity Commission to
mirror the model deed approved by the Army Museums Ogilby Trust. The
process has taken some time to enact but was a positive step to bring
the Museum in line with good practice and procedure.
The uncertainty about the future of the City Museum remains unresolved.
However the Museum flourishes with much local support and goodwill. The
Trustees are grateful to the City of Lancaster and the Friends of the
Lancaster City Museum. We remain confident that the Regimental Museum
will continue in Lancaster for many years to come. Let the journey
Colonel Christopher Warren
Yet another fantastically busy and successful year has passed. So much
has happened in the period April 2016 to March 2017, some of which
planned, but some of which un-expected, but we rose to the challenge and
provided the goods! Not least the highly successful 141 Days: The Battle
of the Somme Exhibition, and then the outstanding Recommissioned
project, more of both of these later in this report.
The museum is pushing forward on all fronts, we are acquiring great
items, we are displaying our collections and mounting major exhibitions,
we are making information available through our website and the curator
has been reaching outside the museum with talks and school visits.
We could not do the work we do without the support from Lancaster City
Council who financially support Lancaster City Museum, including the
King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum. Also the support from the Sir John
Fisher Foundation and the Army Museums Ogibly Trust and major supporters
is much appreciated.
For the future we have many plans for 2017. Not least is yet another
major exhibition at the City Museum, ‘Boomtown: From Front Line to White
Lund’ will tell the story of the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment
around the world, and then bring the story right back home to Lancaster
and Morecambe and district where we will look at war time production and
the two munition works, one of which exploded on 1st October 1917,
killed ten men and becoming embedded in local history.
We are also working with the Friends of Lancaster City Museum with a
Heritage Lottery Fund bid for a project to explore the White Lund
Munition Works explosion and once again take part in the Light Up
Other work also continues and the curator is looking forward to the
publication of “Great War Britain: Lancaster” by the History Press which
he has co-authored with three academics from the History Department at
The museum trustees met at the annual meeting in November. The chairman
welcomed Councillor Elizabeth Scott, Lancaster City Council’s Armed
Forces Champion as an ex-officio member. The trustees agreed the new
trust document, based upon the model deed of the Army Museums Ogilby
Trust, and this will now be submitted to the Charity Commission for
The chairman reported on the various meetings which both he and Major
Daniel Parsonage had attended with Lancaster City Council, including a
meeting with the Economic Development Manager, about the potential for
rejuvenation of the City Museum site.
Major Daniel Parsonage represented the Chairman at the meetings of the
Lancashire County Council and Lancaster City Council Museum Advisory
Panel. Major Parsonage and the Curator also attended a Duke of
Lancaster’s Regiment Museum Co-ordination meeting in December 2016.
The museum holds full accreditation under the scheme operated by Arts
Council England. An interim update of details were supplied to ACE in
Charity Statement of Purpose and Public Benefit
The King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum provides a ‘living’ history of the
character, activities, tradition and history of the British Army and in
particular The King’s Own Royal Regiment, Lancaster. This is achieved
through the preservation, interpretation and display of artefacts,
archives etc for the purposes of historical research, information and
education and the enjoyment of the general public.
The King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum is committed to do what it can to
reduce our impact on the environment. Where possible the museum uses
recycled and recyclable materials. Great effort is made to reuse
envelopes, for example, for both correspondence and sales, this also
saves money. The donation to the museum of used padded envelopes may
appear to be a very minor thing, but this has reduced the packing costs
of museum sales items to almost nil. We re-use paper, use recycled paper
and card and recycle also sorts of waste material from paper and
cardboard to tin cans and glass. Public transport is used where
The Energy Performance Operation Rating of the City Museum building is
60, which rates the museum as ‘C’. ‘A’ being the most efficient, ‘G’
being the worst, and a rating of 100 would be typical for our type of
building. (The building was also rated ‘C’ in the previous year.)
(Certificate Reference Number: 0260-8913-0146-6440-8054)
The work of the museum would not be possible but for the help and
support of many people. Some people are very generous in their time and
support. It would be impossible to acknowledge and thank everyone but
some assistance is above and beyond and needs specific mention. Great
appreciation goes (in no specific order) to Gaynor Greenwood, Fergus
Read, Howard Martin, Pat Shackleton, David Shackleton, Anne Donnelly,
Paul Thompson, Graham Davis, Neil Barnett, Frank Rogers, Max Davison,
Julie Brown and Danny Parsonage for their continued support and
assistance to the Curator. To those named and to many more – a big thank
you for all your help, advice, assistance and encouragement.
We’ve said farewell to Heather Dowler, Museum Manager at the City Museum
for more than ten years. Heather left for pastures new in January 2017
and we would like to thank her for her support of the Regimental Museum
over the years and wish to well in her future endeavours.
141 Days: The Battle of the Somme.
The major exhibition at Lancaster City Museum from July to November was
another exhibition covering the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment in
the First World War. Due to the planned exhibition not receiving the
expected funding, there was a gap in the exhibition programme, which the
King’s Own was able to fill. With once again fantastic financial support
from both the Sir John Fisher Foundation and the Army Museums Ogilby
Trust the exhibition, as the title stated, looked at the 141 Days of the
Battle of the Somme in 1916.
The exhibition was fantastic, and it was seen by 22 379 visitors. We had
thought that the number visiting the War! 1914 exhibition at 18 660
visitors was impressive, but to top that was fantastic. (The exhibition
figures also contributed to the City Museum’s total visitor figure of
just over 60 000 for the year.)
The exhibition told the story of the King’s Own battalions on the Somme
and those soldiers who served with the Regiment. It included both local
soldiers and men who were recruited from a little further a field. It
was pleasing to see visitors from across the United Kingdom coming to
see the exhibition which related to their relatives.
A major feature was made of the Victoria Cross awarded to Private James
Miller for his brave act of gallantry when he carried a vital message
and returned with the reply, on 30th July 1917. Many descendants of
Miller have visited the exhibition and a fitting and appropriate event
took place on the 100th anniversary of the action which was well
attended by both specially invited guests and ordinary members of the
Later in this report you can see some of the comments left by visitors
to the 141 Days Exhibition.
RECOMMISSIONED was a programme of public open access activities and
performances, exploring the unheard voices and untold stories from the
King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. Incorporating and platforming
objects relating to the soldiers who served in the Battle of the Somme,
this is a new way to explore and open up history and encourage new
audiences to the museum. The projected was presented by ‘Sound and
Motion’ the Friends of Lancaster City Museum, the King’s Own Royal
Regiment Museum, with financial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
We were visited by three local schools, Moorside in Lancaster,
Sandylands in Morecambe and Ellel St. John in Galgate. The pupils
visited and learnt about the Battle of the Somme, met our First World
War soldier character, and were inspired to do some creative writing and
screen print larks.
The art installation produced for RECOMMISSIONED was “Larks Ascending”.
141 Larks ascend with extracts of responses from the participation of
children in workshops, working with Visual Artist Jenny McCabe.
RECOMMISSIONED performances, each of 15 minutes length, were held as
part of Light Up Lancaster on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th November 2016,
with additional performances held on Friday 11th November. The story of
the Battle of the Somme was told through light, sound, text and
movement, the promenade performances illuminated stories of those who
trained, fought and experienced the battle of the Somme.
A fantastic 588 people saw the performances, these are some of the
comments from those who saw it:
Extremely moving piece of theatre, saw the 17:00 performance tonight.
Particularly poignant on this the 11th day of the 11th month.
Congratulations to all involved.
This was amazing xxx enjoyed greatly xxx Thank you x
Most moving 15minutes of theatre, and of young lives and love in battle
I’ve ever experienced...
it was probably the most moving event I have ever been to being an ex
regular soldier (40 years) it was fantastic it moved me !
This is powerful and very moving piece of theatre, don’t miss it!
I got the last tickets last Sat night it was brilliant very moving well
done to the people involved.
Everyone who attended received a brown envelope on which was the name of
a soldier of the King’s Own. At the end of the performance guests were
invited to open the envelope and see the fate of the soldier.
The King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum is most grateful to Louie Ingham
and Mark Melville of ‘Sound and Motion’; Jenny McCabe, visual artist and
Steve Fairclough, learning co-ordinator; actors Alex McCaragher, Caoife
Turner and Jamie Mason-Milward; production manager Al Parkinson; Tim
Padfield and Anne-Marie Knowles who gave talks as part of the project;
Carolyn Primett and Julie Brown for their assistance with the project,
Frank Rogers and Neil Barnett for assistance with the costume and last
but by no means least our wonderful performance guides: Louise Bryning,
Alan Sandham, Roger Mace, Heather Dowler, Neil Spencer, Anita Taylor,
Paul Thompson, Sue Ashworth and Danny Parsonage.
Meet the Soldier
The museum’s popular “Meet the First World War Soldier Character”
sessions were held at various times through out the year, including
Heritage Open Days. Meet the soldier became a key part of “Trench
Tuesdays” throughout the school summer holidays, where the soldier was
present at the same time as family friendly craft and music events were
held as part of the 141 Days: The Battle of the Somme Exhibition.
Sessions were also held outside the museum, including the Lancaster
University’s Campus in the City display. These sessions are very popular
and easy to run with limited cost.
There have been some continued challenges this year in keeping the
collections safe and well. Whilst some capital works were successfully
completed in the previous financial year which has solved some of the
rain water issues, the continued poor state of the roof of the King’s
Own gallery is a concern. The replacement of the roof is part of a
larger capital works project which was due to start on 26th March 2017.
In preparation for these works the curator has worked hard to relocate
items from the stores to alternative places. Not always that easy with
the limited space available within the museum! Two filing cabinets have
been relocated from the museum’s store to other rooms, and the small
object collection drawers have been relocated to the curator’s office in
readiness for the works to start. The works sadly did not start on 26th
March due to various issues, but they are planned to start in the next
We have to remain alert to the physical threats to the collections, both
on display and in store. We very much welcome the City Council’s major
Capital works programme for the entire City Museum building, and look
forward to these works starting before too long.
We continue to live in hard financial times, and a lot of hard work is
spent on raising money for the museum. It is pleasing to note some
successes compared to last year. The brand new donation box in the
gallery has seen donations rise from £481 in 2015/16 to £1282 in
2016/17. Sales income is down compared to previous years, but money
raised from donations, photograph sales and reproduction rights and
talks have all increased. The museum received £14 500 worth of grants
for exhibitions and other projects. Even the bank interest increased
from £26.79 in 2015/16 to £30.55 in 2016/17!
Income from grants is key to the museum’s successful operation and the
trustees are most grateful for the continued support from the Sir John
Fisher Foundation and the Army Museums Ogilby Trust.
The Museum submitted an application for the section 33A VAT Refund
scheme for museums and galleries, and we have been informed that we have
met the required criteria. The matter is due to go before parliament in
the spring of 2017, which will then allow the museum to reclaim VAT paid
on various items purchased relating to exhibitions and collections
The museum has one regular donor, who makes a monthly payment by
standing order. The take up of this scheme has been very disappointing.
The museum has received no bequests in the reporting year.
A full financial report has been prepared and will be presented to the
Trustees at their meeting in November 2017.
The website continues to be a key method of delivery of information on
the museum’s collections and the history of the King’s Own Royal
Regiment. The transfer, last year, to a new host and new web address
does not appear to have caused any problems, and the operation of the
website is pretty much straight forward and on the whole it looks after
Many enquiries un-related to the King’s Own Regiment itself, are
generated by the website. People find something on the museum’s website
through a search engine and then can take their enquiry further by
email. Sometimes there’s nothing more we can provide, but we have on a
number of occasion been able to provide high resolution images at a
Monthly Website Visits were as follows
Additions to the website:
Information and collections relating to the following soldiers:
Private William Lawson Wright, 2nd/5th Battalion, King’s Own
Lance Corporal Alfred John Ling, 7th Battalion, King’s Own
Private Archie Roddis, 8th Battalion, King’s Own
Private James Hall, 2nd/5th Battalion, King’s Own
Sergeant William Wilson Rennie, 1st Battalion, King’s Own
Private Herbert Royle, 2nd Battalion, King’s Own
The album of photographs and documents of Chaplain Kevin Wilson of the
1st/5th Battalion, King’s Own, First World War.
List of residents of Westfield Village in 1933
Photographs of Bowerham Barracks, Lancaster
Listing of 742 books held in the museum’s collection.
New acquisitions added throughout the website.
77% of the museum’s collection is now listed or digitally copied and
added to the website. There are now over 20 000 images on the website
which includes digital copies of photographs and photographs of objects.
Most new acquisitions are added to the website, some within a day or so
of their arrival!
Over 800 school children from a number of schools have learnt about the
First World War through visiting the museum or a “meet the soldier”
session held at their school. The curator visited schools in both June,
to mark the anniversary of the start of the Battle of the Somme and in
November to tie in with Remembrance Day. Three schools also visited the
museum as part of the Recommissioned project, run by the Friends of
Lancaster City Museum and financially supported by the Heritage Lottery
It is clear there is much interest from primary schools in relation to
the First World War and remembrance. Many now not only mark two minutes
silence on the 11th November, but also visit their local war memorials,
as was the case with the Ellel Saint John’s CE Primary School at Galgate,
which also held a parents afternoon on the 11th November, in which the
curator took part.
The museum continues to answer many hundreds of enquiries each year, and
again the answers are supported by information on the museum’s website.
People can be directed to the website to see photographs or learn of
more information particular to their enquiry. A total of 1143 enquiries
were answered, the majority of which were received and answered by
Talks & Tours
The curator continued to provide talks and walking tours of Lancaster to
local groups both within the district and further a field. A number of
Great War guided walks of Lancaster took place as part of the
Recommissioned Project. Subjects covered in the City Museum’s talks
programme included Regimental Archives and the Centenary of the Battle
of the Somme. A special event was held on 30th July 2016 to mark the
centenary of the action for which Private James Miller was awarded the
Victoria Cross. The VC was a central part of the 141 Days: The Battle of
the Somme Exhibition.
The museum took a full part in Heritage Open Days in September 2016,
which saw talks, “meet the soldier” sessions and the screening of the
Kendal Home Guard film in partnership with the Archives Office in
Work with outside bodies
Army Museums Ogilby Trust
Western Front Association – North Lancashire Branch
War Memorials Trust
Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment & Association
BBC Radio Lancashire
North West Evening Mail, Barrow
Imperial War Museum (Centenary Partnership)
First World War Group – Lancaster City Council
Heritage Open Days
Cumbria Archives & Local Studies Centre, Kendal
Tourism & Marketing Department – Lancaster City Council
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Friends of Lancaster City Museum
Who Do You Think You Are? Live
History Department, Lancaster University
Campus in the City, Lancaster University
Dukes Cinema, Lancaster
First Fridays – Lancaster Arts City
Light Up Lancaster
The Curator is a personal member of the following organisations:
Associate of the Museums Association
Friends of Lancaster City Museum
The Museum is a member of
Military History Society
Salonika Campaign Society
The Curator made a number of visits and attended a number of events:
Various talks at the North Lancashire Branch of the Western Front
Imperial War Museum First World War Centenary Group Meetings
Army Museums Ogilby Trust Conference
First World War Centenary Meetings led by Lancaster City Council.
It has yet again been a good year for acquisitions and many interesting
things have been acquired for the museum’s collection. It is interesting
that more material has been donated relating to Captain Albert Ellwood
MC. The first item relating to Captain Ellwood was donated to the museum
in 1946, which was a water colour sketch of a Lewis Gunner of the
1st/4th Battalion in the July 1917. Subsequent donations have included
his Military Cross, Memorial Plaque and this year some notebooks and
postcards relating to his service. Five different donations, from
different members of his family, have come to the museum in the past 70
More material has been donated relating to Sergeant Albert Holt, who
served with both the 1st/4th and 1st/5th Battalions of the King’s Own in
the First World War, including some wonderful photographs which have
already been digitised and added to the museum’s website.
Not everything is donated, and a constant check is kept on the internet
auction site, Ebay, but also other auction sale rooms. A scrap album of
photographs and documents relating to Chaplain Keith Wilson, who was
padre to the 1st/5th Battalion between 1917 and 1918. The album
containing both personal and regimental items which bought from an
auction in Kent.
Amongst the medals which have been donated this year, are a First World
War Military Medal group, and a Long Service and Good Conduct Medal to a
19th Century soldier. Colour Sergeant Patrick McCraith had served with
the 4th Foot from 1839 to 1860, and had been awarded the medal at a time
when it was a very difficult medal to receive (on the basis of good
conduct rather than the long service!), and those who received it were
much respected by their comrades. It was certainly not a medal “handed
out with the rations” and viewed by many as second only to the Victoria
The full accession listing for the year 2016-17 appears below:
KO3046 Photographs, documents, cigarette cards, embroidered cushion from
Egypt, 1941, drawing of drum majors staff from Henry Potter & Co,
Aldershot, and silver vesta case presented to Richard Roocroft, 1st
Volunteer Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. Purchased on
internet auction site, Ebay.
KO3047 British War and Allied Victory Medal, identity disc, photographs
and discharge certificate of Private William Lawson Wright, 2nd/5th
Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. Purchased.
KO3048 Book: Soldiers as Workers, Class Employment, conflict and the
nineteenth-century military. By Nick Mansfield, Liverpool University
Press. Published 2016. Gift of Liverpool University Press, Liverpool.
KO3049 1914/15 Star and fibre identity disc to Private Harry Ferguson,
number 240130, 1st/5th Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment.
From the estate of Mr T R W Ferguson, via Holdens Solicitors, Kendal.
KO3050 British War and Allied Victory Medal and Memorial Plaque to Lance
corporal Alfred John Ling, number 26816, 7th Battalion, King’s Own Royal
Lancaster Regiment. Killed in action 22 Sep 1917. London School Board
Attendance Medals, photographs, documents. Gift of Mrs Sylvia Chapman,
KO3051 Photos lent to be copied of the 2nd Battalion King’s Own at the
King’s Birthday Parade, Asmara, Eritrea, 1948 and group photo of those
soldiers of the King’s Own who took part in the 1953 Coronation Parade
in London. Lent to be copied by Mr Leonard Knowles, Lancaster
KO3052 Photographs of Grave of Lance corporal Cleaver Lawrence Alfred
Newitt, number 3707676, King’s Own Royal Regiment. Who died 11 Nov 1941
at the age of 35 years. Son of Alfred Herbert and Eliza Newitt. Husband
of Eva Newitt of Bermondsey. Buried in Nunhead All Saints Cemetery,
South London. Also photos of War Graves commission information panels in
the same cemetery. Photographed by Peter Donnelly, Curator.
KO3053 Photographs, notebooks, postcards, pencil drawing relating to
Captain Albert E Ellwood MC, 1st/4th Battalion, King’s Own Royal
Lancaster Regiment. Gift of Mr Raymond Ellwood (nephew) Kendal.
KO3054 Photographs and postcards, relating to the First World War
service of Private Albert Holt, 5th Battalion, King’s Own Royal
Lancaster Regiment, in both England and on the Western Front. Gift of
Mrs Jan Henschke, Bare, Morecambe.
KO3055 Souvenir Programme for the Warrant Officers, Colour Sergeants and
Sergeants, 1st Battalion, King’s Own Royal Regiment, Reunion Ball at
Saighton Camp, Chester, 7 Oct 1950. Gift of Gwyn Evans, Cockermouth,
Donor had a family printing business in Chester and they printed items
for many of the regiments which were based in Chester.
KO3056 Location cards for the 1st Battalion, King’s Own Royal Regiment,
from 1946 to 1959 originally used by the Army Staff Duties Branch. Gift
of Army Historical Branch.
KO3057 1914/15 Star and Allied Victory Medal of 2nd Lieutenant George
Rowland Paget Howson, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. With
photographs and letters relating to his service and death. Gift of Mr A
R P Williams, Aston End, Hertfordshire.
KO3058 Army kit bag named to Private Baker, 23061138, King’s Own Royal
Regiment, HMT Cheshire, Hong Kong to United Kingdom. Gift of Mr Trevor
Lawton, Ashton-under Lyne.
KO3059 Military Medal, 1914/15 Star, British War and Allied Victory
Medal awarded to Private James Hall, number 240507, 1st/5th Battalion,
King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. Plus two gallant conduct cards,
bugle, photographs and postcards. From the estate of Mr G P Hall, via
the Executor, Mr Harris, from Mr Leslie Wilkinson, Halton, Lancaster.
KO3060 Scrap album relating to Chaplain Kevin Wilson, who was Padre to
the 1st/5th Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment circa
1917-1918. Purchased at Auction.
KO3061 Correspondence relating to the death of Private Herbert J Royle,
number 3714549, 2nd Battalion, King’s Own Royal Regiment, killed by
accident on 18th March 1944 in Burma, sent to his wife. Includes matters
concerning the payment of benefits etc. Gift of Mrs Christine
KO3062 Photographs relating to the service of Sergeant William Rennie,
1st Battalion, King’s Own Royal Regiment, in India, circa 1930s and
Second World War. Pair of embroidered handkerchiefs. Gift of Mr Anthony
E Rennie, Largs, Ayrshire.
KO3063 Book: Ladybarn Men. In Memory of the men of St. Chad’s, Ladybarn,
Manchester, who gave their lives in The Great War 1914-1918. By John
Davies. Gift of the author.
KO3064 1914-15 Star, British War and Allied Victory Medals to Private
Richard Holland, number 200619, 1st/4th Battalion, King’s Own Royal
Lancaster Regiment. Bequest of Mr Holland, son, from executor Mr David
Williams, Long Newton, Stockton on Tees
KO3065 Digital photograph supplied by Morton & Eden Ltd, London
Roads of Remembrance Committee of the Roads Beautifying Association
Bronze plaque named to 2nd Lieutenant A T (Peter) Nickel of the 1st
Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers. (No further trace) and Captain
Ralph D’Albini Morrell, of the 1st/4th Battalion, King’s Own Royal
Lancaster Regiment, was killed in action on 8 Aug 1916 whilst in
temporary command of the battalion in the Trones Wood sector, the Somme.
KO3066 Photograph of the 4th (TF) Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster
Regiment, Kirkham, 1912. Gift of Mr Ron French, Beccles, Norfolk, via
Kirkham Library and the County Records Office, Preston,.
KO3067 Morecambe Bay Medical Journal, Military Medicine Edition, Autumn,
2015, Volume 7, Number 5. Including features on Captain Bingham, 1st/5th
King’s Own. Gift of Mr Bryan Rhodes, Royal Lancaster Infirmary,
KO3028 Book: Infantry Divisions Identification Schemes, 1917. By Mike
Hibberd. The Military Historical Society, Special Number, 2016.
KO3029 Book: Burton in Lonsdale Remembers, Centenary of the Great War,
2014-2018, A commemorative trail around Burton in Lonsdale, North
Yorkshire. Gift of the Publisher.
KO3070 Mantel Clock, made by Garrad Clocks Co. Britain, and marked with
the retailers name ‘Kramer Cairo’. Plaque on the top of the clock states
“Presented to RSM R R Ralph on his promotion by members of the Sergeants
Mess, 2nd Battalion, King’s Own Royal Regiment, Cairo, 1940” Ralph
Reginald Ralph was commissioned in 1940 in to the Leicester Regiment.
Gift of Mr Andy Runciman, Paignton, Devon.
KO3071 Battle Dress Blouse, with King’s Own shoulder titles and evidence
that other badges have been removed. The label on the inside has some
information: “275833 Major Midgley, Burscough Station.” The number
275833 would, however, appear to belong to a Major A F Fletcher, who was
major in Aug 1963. Lieutenant J E Midgley appears as number 271826,
Captain Royal Engineers, Jun 1949. Gift of Neil Barnett, Burton in Holme.
KO3072 Documents relating to Private Michael Carradus, number 1044, 5th
Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. Gift of Mrs Julie
KO3073 Long Service and Good Conduce Medal to Colour Sergeant Patrick
McCraith, 4th King’s Own Royal Regiment. Gift of Dr Kennedy McCraith,
What some of our visitors said:
I particularly liked the Lieutenant Colonel’s [Bois] watercolours [of
Salonika], but the war exhibition was well delivered and very memorable
My 3x great grandfather was a soldier in the 4th Regiment of Foot
[Visitor from Australia]
Great exhibition of WW1. Very interesting
Regimental museum – outstanding!
What some of our visitors said about 141 Days: The Battle of the
A really fascinating exhibition. Reading the displays makes the
problems of today feel wholly insignificant.
Heartbreakingly sad – I could not stop crying! A wonderful and
Very sad and moving. A very informative exhibition.
Very effective display created with imagination. The YMCA hut and tea
caravan – brilliant, and so atmospheric.
Brought kids, they were very interested and asked lots of questions.
A well presented and touching reminder of the reality of war.
Came to see the VC of my great great uncle, James Miller. So moved to
see the lovely exhibition. Moving to see how many gave their lives.
An effective and informative exhibition.
The exhibition is really interesting. I like the videos being played.
A superb exhibition with interesting displays.
Very moving and multi-faceted.
Brilliant tribute to the King’s Own, and the Great War. Very emotional
to see actual artefacts and stunning displays.
Great for GCSE learning and super fun.
Very informative and simple to understand for children.
Fab time, loved it!
Excellent! Left feeling very sad.
I liked the big guns.
Extremely informative and well laid out.
A deeply moving experience that tells the story of so many brave heroes
doing their duty for King and Country. One of which was my wife’s great
great grandfather (4855 Sergeant Anthony Hoyle).
It has felt very sombre coming here today, 100 years after the end of
the Battle of the Somme. I thought the displays the museum has showed to
be fascinating and I was particularly struck by the aerial photographs
of Guillemont where my ancestor Sergeant J E Towers, was killed days
after it was taken.
A magnificently put together exhibition; one of the very best I have
seen at the museum during the past 40 years.
Good for the children to understand the meaning of the Somme in
pictures and artefacts.
I find this exhibition a sobering reminder of the suffering in times
gone by. The silk postcards are especially interesting as I have never
seen any before. They are a touching reminder of the families who lost
as well as those killed in action. Thank you!
A superb exhibition. Plenty of good content and with some thought
provoking episodes. A nice tribute to the King’s Own men. We hope to see
later exhibitions here.
Very tastefully handled exhibition on the Somme, a testament to all
Makes you realise who the true heroes are in life. NOT politicians or
pop stars etc.
Very interesting, our culture needs to be maintained. Stop closing
Great exhibits, wonderful Lancaster regiment display.
What some of our enquirer’s said:
I’m so glad that I was ‘lucky’ in your search, I can’t quite believe
you were able to respond so quickly - thank you. (Coincidentally, it was
my father’s birthday yesterday so maybe some luck came from this!). I
enjoyed looking at your site knowing which battalion my father was in
and will also take it further with Glasgow. I’ll be very happy to make a
contribution to your organisation and will do so this evening.
Many thanks for your kind response to my request for information about
Private Albert Rusconi, one of the Great War casualties listed on our
Thank you very much for this information. My great uncle served in
Salonika so I will certainly come along to the museum soon to see the
I have passed on the details you provided to the school and they are
really delighted to be able to piece together more of the story of
‘their’ PoW. I had already pointed them to the very useful information
on your website about the Prisoner of War Care Committee.
Thank you for the swift reply and the information regarding the UN
medal, I will follow your link for the other medals.
Thank you for your email with the information and the links, it adds a
little more information to the puzzle. Thanks again for your time.
Wow, That’s a shocker about the photograph. I wonder why we have it
then. Maybe another ancestor is on it. Many thanks for the info and
confirmation that I have the correct war diary. Thank you for the link,
I will certainly check it out. I really appreciate your time and help
Many thanks for your research. I had no idea that The King’s Own had an
armoured Bn; I had thought that it was only Foot Guards which did that.
I do appreciate your further reply and for explaining matters to me
which is much appreciated and interesting to note.
Thank you for your prompt response. Your note about the training and
location certainly chimes with my thoughts.
Thank you Peter, you have been a great help, I will press on with these
leads you have given me.
Thanks for the prompt reply to my request for information and guidance.
Thank you for your prompt and informative reply. The details supplied,
though brief, have cleared up certain queries about when he joined,
which battalion he served in and when he was promoted. We will certainly
be following up with the army service records to find out where he was
during the remainder of the war years. Congratulations on the website.
It is extremely interesting, full of detail and very informative.
Thank you kindly for providing the information below - I’m sincerely
grateful for your time - it’s much appreciated. This is really
interesting and the additional information help me to piece things
together. Next time I return to the UK and to Lancaster I will be sure
to stop by.
Many thanks for your speedy response. Much appreciated.
Thanks for the insight into newspapers in Lancaster during WW1. Clearly
not a straightforward thing!
I apologise for not thanking you for you emailed information. It was
lost amongst my other mail. You must have thought me rude? I very much
appreciate you taking time to research and reply to me.
Thank you so much for your prompt and informative response to my
enquiry about my great uncle Private Thomas Pickup. This information is
really appreciated. It is only recently that I became aware of the fate
of Thomas hence my interest in the possible circumstances of his death.
Thank you so much. This is very much appreciated indeed. I shall pass
this information on to my cousins in England and also to my Aunt,
Valerie Lowes, his last surviving child. It is wonderful that your
museum provides such services, assisting in commemorating the brave
service of members of the King’s Own and I shall be delighted to make a
donation to the museum in memory of my grandfather, best wishes.
Thank you so much for your very prompt reply to my email.
Thank you for the swift reply and all the information. Much more than I
expected. I am delighted and I know my grandchildren mainly the twin
boys will be also. Well he certainly moved around during his time in the
army. To say I am excited is an understatement. All war is nasty but
what the men and the women had to deal with was truly frightening. It is
to all of those that fought we should give our most grateful thanks
everyday. Thank you once again for your help, I am making sure I will
call into the museum in the not to distant future. Bringing a small
donation to help towards its upkeep. My very best wishes to you and let
us not forget all they gave to keep us safe.
Thank you once again for your time and effort in helping me piece
together the information about my Grandfather.
Thank you so much for your help, which has helped to clarify things.
Thank you too for such a prompt response. I did leave a message, which
will have been cut off as I talked for too long! I’m popping a small
donation in the post by way of thanks, with a completed form for gift
Historical Facts and Figures
Peter Donnelly BA AMA
King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum
Curator Telephone: 01524 555619
Museum Telephone: 01524 64637
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