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Key dates over January 1915

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Lives lost on this day: 2

9th January 1915 - Worcestershire soldiers hospitalized with frostbite

Rolling casualty count: 578

1st Batt: Red Barn: In Brigade Reserve billets; 2nd Batt: In billets at Vieille-Chapelle. Standing by ready to move at half hours’ notice; 3rd Batt: In billets at Westoutre.

A Penetrating Bullet: Pte W. Chambers (8680), “B” Company, 2nd Worcesters, writing to his wife: “We are having two days’ rest after being in the trenches for a week. I haven’t had a wash or a shave for a week and am caked all over with clay. We all look like a lot of tramps. I have had a bullet go through my ruck-sack. It went through a box, through some tobacco that Princess Mary sent us, and through another tin box, and broke my watch and strap and smashed a set of rosary beads. I am going to try and have it sent home for a souvenir.”

New Year Visitor to the Workhouse: An undesired visit to the Workhouse on New Year’s morning has just come to light. It is supposed that a person having applied unsuccessfully for relief, entered the office of Mr. Alcock (Relieving Officer). He scaled the wall surrounding the Workhouse, smashed a window of the office and secured an entrance. Having failed to open the safe with the aid of a poker, he overturned the former from its stand into the middle of the room, causing some damage to the furniture in doing so. He did not succeed in opening the safe, whose contents were small. He smashed the face of the clock and then decamped. The police have the matter in hand;

Tomorrow the City team play Stourbridge at St George’s Lane. The City will be represented by the same team as last week, Silvester, Cook, Everton, Crabtree, H. Ratcliff, Webb, Waterhouse, Pearson, Houghton, A. Ratcliffe and C. Haywood.) Stourbridge have selected the eleven which beat Aston Villa, at Aston, on Saturday last;

There were 50 recruits enrolled at Norton Barracks on Thursday, bringing the total for the first 6 days of the year to 379;

Inquiries are being made in the Malvern district, with a view to billeting 1,000 soldiers, who, it is reported, are coming here from Salisbury Plain, where, owing to the bad weather, the conditions are far from pleasant;

Pte H. J. Willmore, of the 1st Worcs, who was badly frost-bitten at the front, is still in the Western Hospital at Manchester. On Christmas Day it was found necessary to amputate all the toes of the right foot and parts of the left foot, and he underwent two operations. A comrade, who was frost-bitten at the same time, but has now recovered, has said that several more of the 1st Worcs. were frost-bitten as well. They crawled into a barn, where they huddled together for the night in some straw. Each took his boots off to ease the pain, but in the morning their feet had swollen so badly that they had to be carried to hospital; Inspector Bradley, of the Worcester City Police Force, has for some time been anxious for the safety of his brother, Pte. T. Bradley, of the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards, and has received news that he is a prisoner of war in the hands of the Germans. Pte. Bradley was despatched to the front at the outbreak of war, and quite early in the campaign his battalion were caught in a hot corner, and suffered very severe punishment. For 10 weeks no communication was received from him but last week his wife received a postcard from him to say he was a prisoner at Konigsberg but not wounded. Pte Bradley who is 29 year of age, had been married but a month before the war began;

The Mayor desires us to inform the citizens that he has opened a fund at the Guildhall for the relief of the wives, families, and dependents of those citizens who have been called to join the colours, and that, contributions will be gratefully received by him at the Guildhall.

Information researched by Sue Redding