King's Own Royal Regiment Museum


Museum & Collections
Contact Us

17th Century
18th Century
19th Century
20th Century
First World War
Second World War
Actions & Movements
Battle Honours

Further Reading


© Images are copyright, Trustees of the King's Own Royal Regiment Museum.
 You must seek permission prior to publication of any of our images.

The Great War News from Lancaster in 1914

28th November 1914

War Items

3rd King’s Own (Special Reserve) transferred from Saltash to Sunderland. The 10th Battalion have gone to Saltash.

Wounded soldiers at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary

On Saturday afternoon a party of wounded soldiers from the front, 14 in total, two Belgians and 12 of British Regiments, arrived in Lancaster for treatment at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary where 30 beds have been set aside.

The men suffering from shrapnel and bullet wounds arrived at Castle Station and were received by the Mayor and Mayoress and others. A hearty reception was given to the men and were driven in motorcars to the RLI.

Comforts for Soldiers

The ladies’ sewing parties organised by the Mayoress of Lancaster have produced the following:
722 pairs of socks
305 shirts
500 Mufflers, housewives, belts etc.

Mr Herbert Storey’s Ambulance Car

The Ambulance Car which Mr Storey has fit up for use at the front. (Photo).
He has put the name ‘Bailrigg’ as the name of the car thinking that perhaps some Lancaster men at the front might see it, and it would remind them of home and Lancaster.

War Items

Private F Nunn, 1st King’s Own, who was reported killed, is only wounded, and is in the Clacton-on-Sea Hospital.

The news of the death from wounds of 8653 Private J Carney, a Lancaster man, in the 6th King’s Own, has been confirmed.

Private Carter, of the Bedford Regiment, whose parents reside at Lancaster, has been discharged from hospital, and has returned to his regiment at the front.

Mr Joseph Hartley, Meadowside, Lancaster, reports that the amount received from the sale of old newspapers etc, collected by Boy Scouts last week, has been £4 11s, which will be handed over to the Belgian Soldiers’ Fund.

The 3rd King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment (Special Reserves) have been transferred from Saltash in the South of England to Sunderland. The 10th (Kitchener’s) Battalion have gone to Saltash.

Captain R M Luckock, of the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, has graduated at the Staff College. He is the won of the late Dean of Lichfield, and the brother-in-law of Mr H Pike Pease MP for Darlington. He saw active service in the Boer War, and is now with the Expeditionary Force.

Mr E Williams, grocer, Bowerham Road, has received a post card from his son, Sergeant Jack Williams, of the King’s Own Regiment, who is in hospital at Tempel Hof, Berlin, to say he is doing well, but is not yet able to get up. This is the first message written in his own hand, the previous note coming from Princess Pless.

Mr T J Marker wishes to thank all those who have so kindly contributed, through Mrs. Bland, to her fund for sending out to the Front, Xmas puddings for the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. The generous response from all quarters now enables her to make the necessary arrangements for their despatch.

Distinguished Conduct

In the Depot orders at Bowerham Barracks, on Monday, issued by Lieutenant and Adjutant A E Radcliffe, at the command of Colonel Duffin, appeared the following:-

“His Majesty the King has approved of the grant of the Medal for Distinguished Conduct in the Field to 7941 sergeant E Howard, 1st Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment. At Meterin, on the 13th October, when within 200 yards of the enemy in the open, noticing that the 12 men on the left of his platoon were not firing, though he shouted to them to carry on, he crawled along the line at very great risk to make them do so, but found that the 12 were dead.”

North Lancashire Territorial Killed

The death of another Territorial, who was killed on the line at the end of a viaduct near Hanwell Station, on the Great Western Railway, was inquired into at a Paddington inquest on Saturday. The deceased was Private John Robert Singleton, aged 20, of the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment (Territorials), and a native of Barrow in Furness. It was stated that he went on duty at nine o’clock on Thursday morning as sentry, and ten minutes later, after an express train to Reading had passed, another sentry saw him lying in the middle of the line. He was conveyed to Bishops Road Station in another train, but was dead on arrival. Captain Pearson said the work was very dangerous unless the men exercised very great care. To carry out his duties properly it might have been necessary for Singleton to cross the lines. The driver of the express train said Singleton was walking on the opposite line to that along which the train was travelling, and suddenly crossed the six foot way and stepped in front of the engine. Witness had been sounding his whistle for some distance – A verdict of “Accidental death” was returned.

Wounded at Lancaster Infirmary

On Saturday afternoon a party of wounded soldiers from the front, numbering 14 – two Belgians and 12 of British Regiments – arrived at Lancaster for treatment at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, where 30 beds have been placed at the disposal of the authorities. The men had been transferred from Fazackerley Hospital, Liverpool, as “convalescents.” They are suffering from shrapnel and bullet wounds chiefly, and were all able to walk, but it was plainly evident that some have had a rough time. The Mayor (Councillor W Briggs) and the Mayoress were present at the Station to welcome the men, and there were also present on the Station platform Dr. Cassidy, Dr Dean, Major Holmes, RAMC, Mr R N Helme, Mr and Mrs J Helme, Mr A W Hunt, Chief Constable Harris, and Inspector Wearing. A hearty reception was given the men, who were driven in motor cars supplied by Messrs: Atkinson, Mr Mansergh and Mr J W Pickard JP to the Infirmary, where under the direction of Mrs Crewe (Matron) and Staff they were made comfortable.

Belated Report

There was another example of the delay in reporting casualties on Saturday, when the official return was made that Lieutenant J H C Coulston of the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, was now a wounded prisoner – a fact published in the local papers a fortnight ago.

Comforts for Soldiers

As a result of the excellent work done by the Ladies’ Sewing Parties, organised by the Mayoress of Lancaster, there has been forwarded to the various battalions of the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, including those at the Front, 722 pairs of socks, 305 shirts, and about 500 mufflers, housewives, belts etc. The Mayoress has also been able to supply vests for the wounded soldiers who arrived at the Lancaster Infirmary on Saturday. Attention may again be drawn to the Mayor’s Fund for providing comforts for the soldiers, the secretary for which is Mr Fred Huntingdon. The appeal has met with a moderate response, but the need must be evident to everyone, and it is hoped that liberal donations will be forthcoming.

A Prisoner Not Dead

The wife of Private R Rutter, of the King’s Own Royal Lancasters, who lives in Palmerston Street, Beswick, has received a postcard from her husband saying that he is a prisoner of war in Paderborn, Germany. Rutter had been announced as being dead.

Home Defenders for Abroad

We understand that the Home Defence or Reserve Battalion of the 5th King’s Own Regiment, have volunteered for foreign service. Some who have agreed to go to the senior 5th Battalion, have been vaccinated this week, and were allowed 48 hours furlough. The 5th King’s Own will probably leave for France early next month.

Recruiting at Bowerham Barracks

The recruiting keeps up wonderfully well at Bowerham Barracks, there having been some good batches from various Lancashire towns this week. Drafts have been sent to Tidworth and Boscombe. On Saturday night 43 left, on Monday 45, on Tuesday 44 and on Thursday about 70. One man from Wigan was particularly keen. As soon as he was sworn in he asked “Where’s the Kaiser?”

Belgian Aviator Returns to Duty

Piette Jules, a Belgian aviator, who has been staying in Lancaster, has returned to duty. He was in Antwerp when the city was besieged, and was sent to blow up the aerodrome when the Germans approached. He carried out his orders and got out of Antwerp with difficulty. On November 22nd he had to report himself to the Belgian Military Bureau. Another Belgian, who has been staying in the district, Panel Van Weddingen, has also returned to the Colours.

King’s Own in Kent

The 5th King’s Own Regiment who have volunteered for foreign service, were transferred last week from Didcot to Sandwich, Kent. They have had route marches as far as Ramsgate, and had the fine spectacle of warships in the Channel. The men are having a lot of musketry practice. They are billeted in the district, but expect to leave in December for France.

Not Dead but a Prisoner

Private James Maguire, 1st King’s Own, has sent a postcard to his mother who lives at present at 58 Eastham Street, saying that he is not dead (as reported) but a prisoner in Germany. He adds that he is quite well, and is being treated very well, but he does not care how soon the war is over, as he wants to get home once more.

Lancaster Civic Guard

We understand that the Lancaster Civic Guard who have been on special duty guarding bridges etc, ever since the outbreak of the war, have now been relieved of that class of duty which will be undertaken by the local National Reservists. The Guard’s have rendered yeoman service, and the majority are clever marksmen. They will still be retained as special constables

Old Men’s Corps at Grange.

The patriotic enthusiasm of the old men of Grange over Sands district has led to the formation among them of a Volunteer Training Corps for drill and musketry exercises. Mr J W Pratt, formerly of Carlisle, has been elected secretary of the Corps, and it is intended that it should be affiliated to the Central Association of Volunteer Training Corps. The meeting at which the decision was come to to form the Corps was attended mostly by special constables, a body at Grange of about 80 men of whom Mr Pratt is secretary, and who patrol the railway line in relays for some miles from 4 pm to midnight every day.

Clitheroe MP Rejoins King’s Own

Mr Albert Smith, Labour MP for the Clitheroe Division, has accepted a commission in the King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, in which earlier in his life he served as a private and corporal. In a letter to his agent for the division, Mr Smith says: “As you well know, this country is involved in a deplorable and cruel war, which, from all the available evidence, is not likely soon to terminate. The Labour Party has thrown its lot with other parties in the State in order that an early and satisfactory conclusion may be reached; all parties are appealing for men, including the Parliamentary Committee of the Trades Unions Congress. That more men are needed at once is an admitted fact, and the more than men who immediately respond, the more certain and quick will be the victory and the consequent less loss of valuable life and money. I have, as you are aware, addressed a few meetings in the constituency with a view to obtaining men – which to me was not a very congenial task. I therefore asked myself the question ‘Have you tried yourself!’ and could not conscientiously continue to address meetings until I had answered the question by either being accepted or rejected for service myself. The result has been that I have accepted a commission (temporary) in a splendid regiment for the duration of the war only. I profoundly feel it my duty to use my former experience to aid my country in the day of peril, and to share the hardships of those who have gone before me. I therefore trust you will bear with me during the time I am in the army. I need not say that my opinions have not changed, and my sincere hope is that when the war is over the settlement will be such that another war of a like character will be impossible.”



Only a proportion of our collections are on display at anyone time.  Certain items are on loan for display in other institutions.  An appointment is required to consult any of our collections which are held in store.

© 2014 Trustees of the King's Own Royal Regiment Museum