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Key dates over January 1915

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Lives lost on this day: 3

3rd January 1915 - New pension rates for discharged servicemen

Rolling casualty count: 571

1st Batt: ‘B’ Lines: OCA Company reported that the Germans had dug a sap during the night opposite his left platoon near the ‘Line of Willows’ and from it a parallel about 75 yards from our trenches. [During the night Lt HF Stacke had gone out on patrol and had ‘put up’ 3 or 4 Germans who had run back at his approach.] The CO (Maj. ECF Wodehouse DSO) reported as above to the GOC 24th Infantry Brigade by telephone and then went to see the Brigadier personally. At this interview it was decided that we should rush the new German parallel and sap this evening with 1 officer and 25 men; but not until the last company relieved had passed Rouge Croix. The whole operation was not to take more than 5 minutes and, on no account, were any of the men to follow up any German communication or fire trenches. Lt Roberts took the party over the parapet and lay down about 10 yards in front and on a given signal they rushed forward; About 3 sentries were encountered 10 yards in front of the German trench who were entirely surprised and were bayoneted, the German trench was found to be full of Germans who were lying asleep in the bottom of the trench. These were immediately bayoneted and shot before Lt Roberts and his party returned as quickly as possible to their own trench. Within 18 hours of the assault Lt Roberts was awarded the DSO; 2nd Batt: In billets at Richebourg-St-Vaast. Very cold and wet; 3rd Batt: In billets at Locre.

Eighteen more soldiers now recovered from wounds are ready to leave the Infirmary. Eleven of them are Belgians and seven English. Miss Morris is arranging an entertainment for the Infirmary patients for Tuesday; Pte G Meaking, of the 3rd Battalion, has made a statement in which he expresses the opinion that the Germans knew the Worcesters were coming to Mons. As they arrived there and started to dig trenches an order came countermanding this, and they were moved on to the road to a position near a coal mine. There they started to dig more trenches, and he was certain that the Germans watched them. They had been in these trenches only a few hours when the order came to hold them at all costs… From the first battle on August 23rd to November 7th, when he was wounded, the Worcesters lost 32 officers. Meaking’s section, one-sixteenth of the company, was 14 strong when it left Southampton, and after Ypres it had been reduced to four. At Ypres the 3rd Worcesters, whose numbers had by then been considerably reduced, had a very narrow escape from complete capture, the enemy getting behind them. For several hours he remained in the shelter of a haystack with others, and when they were in an exposed position and the snipers were busy, his officer, Lt. Martin, borrowing Meaking’s rifle to “have a pop” at one. Although warned of the danger of exposing himself, he could not resist the temptation, and he was immediately shot through the head;

Rates of Pensions for men discharged on account of wounds or injuries received in the performance of military duty or of disease directly and wholly due to ware service: When partially capable of earning a livelihood: Class 1 to 3 (sergeants and upwards), 1s to 3s a day; Class 4 (corporals), 9d to 2s a day; Class 5 (privates), 6d to 1s 6d a day; When totally incapable of earning a livelihood: Class 1 to 3 (sergeants and upwards), 2s 6d to 3s 6d a day; Class 4 (corporals), 2s to 3s a day; Class 5 (privates), 1s 6d to 2s 6d a day: If discharge in consequence of disabilities other than those specified above, but caused by military service: Class 1 to 3 (sergeants and upwards), 8d to 1s a day; Class 4 (corporals), 6d to 10d a day; Class 5 (privates), 6d to 8d a day. Rates of pensions for widows and children (boys under 14 and girls under 16 years of age): Class 1 to 3 (quartermaster-sergeants), 10s a week for widows, 2s a week for each child; Class 2 (colour-sergeants), 9s, 2s; Class 3 (sergeants), 1s 6d a week, 2s a week; Class 4 (corporals), 6s, 1s 6d; Class 5 (privates), 5s a week, 1s 6d:

Information researched by Sue Redding