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Key dates over January 1915

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Lives lost on this day: 1

30th January 1915 - Canadian flour stored at the Guildhall

Rolling casualty count: 623

1st Batt: La Gorgue: Corps Reserve Billets; 2nd Batt: In billets at Essars. Ordered to stand by ready to move at 20 minutes notice; 3rd Batt: In trenches E. Kemmel.

For some weeks past a pile of 500 bags of flour has been heaped up in a corner of the Guildhall, its bulk making itself visible through the window, a comforting token to passers-by that the starvation of citizens is remote. This flour was Worcester’s share of the million and a quarter bags from Canadian States. Ninety thousand four hundred and seventy-four bags have been distributed among local representative committees for the relief of distress, and the remainder has been divided among the Belgian refugees in England, the Commission for Relief in Belgium, and the War Office. Some has been sold, and will, apparently, afford relief in money, instead of in kind. Some has already been turned into bread in the field kitchens in France, and has been duly enjoyed by the troops…With the loyal help of the Worcester Master Bakers’ Association, whose members will turn the flour into bread (free of charge, it has been arranged that, when necessity arises, the bakers will supply bread to the Committee for distribution. During the last few days the bags of flour have been carted from the Guildhall to the various bakeries, where there will, no doubt, be better facilities for storing.

After their fourth months’ initial training at Worcester, the 8th (Reserve) Battalion , which was formed when the main Battalion were drafted to the East Coast, left the city to-day for their more serious divisional training in the East Midands, where they will form part of the 2nd South Midland Division of which the Marquis of Salisbury is in command. The conduct of the men whilst billeted in the city has been exemplary, and their departure is a matter for sentimental regret, but one and all are glad that they will now be able to enter upon a career of advanced training, and, possibly, active service, knowing that they, like the other bodies of Territorials who have already gone from the city, will do their utmost to uphold the high traditions of Worcestershire soldiers.

This morning the 8th (Reserve) Battalion of the Worcs Regt attended a church parade at the Cathedral. The service was in the nature of a farewell, since the Battalion leaves for its new station on Saturday. About 1,000 NCO’s and men paraded outside the HQ in Silver Street, and subsequently marched up to the Cathedral, headed by their band, who played the airs which have become so familiar to Worcester people during the Battalion’s stay in the city.

Information researched by Sue Redding