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The Great War News from Lancaster in 1914

24th October 1914

War Items

Fifty men of the Lancaster National Reserve were transferred to the German Prisoners’ Detention Camp at the Wagon Works on Friday afternoon, replacing a similar number of Welsh Fusiliers. Colonel Ansley is in command.

King’s Own New Colonel

The Home Defence Battalion of the King’s Own quartered at the Drill Hall, Phoenix Street, and adjacent premises, is now commanded by Colonel William Compton Hall, formerly of the 2nd Volunteer Battalion, Manchester Regiment, from which he retired on 22nd April 1903.

Shirts Etc, Needed at the Front

We are requested to state that an officer of the King’s Own Regiment at the Front writes to say that both officers and men are badly in need of flannel shirts and warm underclothing. If people will kindly send contributions of these garments to the Officer Commanding at the Depot, Bowerham Barracks, they will be forwarded immediately.

Who Fired the First Shot?

The question which of the British regiments fired the first shot in the war has been frequently asked. Lancaster people will be interested to know that the distinction is claimed by the famous King’s Own. Just before the battle of Mons a picked company of the regiment had been sent ahead of the main British position on outpost duty, and had halted at a point where four roads met, when, without a moment’s warning, a murderous fire was levelled at the little group by German artillery and infantry. The Lancashire men rushed to the meagre cover available, and made such reply as was possible to their foes. They found themselves outnumbered by ten to one, and had to fight their way back to the main British entrenchments. In this retreat they fell in bunches, but not a single man was captured, and when the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders covered the same ground shortly after they picked up the wounded. The outpost fight was the beginning of the Battle of Mons.



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.

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