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Key dates over February 1915

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Lives lost on this day: 1

24th February 1915 - Air raid sirens tested in Worcester

Rolling casualty count: 662

1st Batt: Lt. HF Stacke reported that the Germans had commenced to repair the Eastern end of the trench rushed by Lt Roberts on January 3rd. Patrols sent out last night reported that 100 yards of the trench were not held, the trench was full of water, and that there were about 10 dead Germans still in the bottom of the trench. Lt. Stacke suggested that the trench be filled in at night to prevent the Germans reoccupying it thus rendering ‘A’ Company trench in a dangerous position. The CO considered this to be too large a risk of life for the object to be fulfilled, but instructed Lt. Stacke to send out an officers’ patrol to determine whether it would be better to fill in the trench by small parties carrying out sandbags from our own trenches; 2nd Batt: In the trenches at Festubert;3rd Batt: In billets at Locre;

The hooter, “of a distinctive kind,” which is to give the alarm to the city should enemy aircraft penetrate as far inland as Worcester, was given a trial this morning. It proved to be less terrible than we had anticipated. In the Black Country and the North one hears these things so frequently that after a day or two among them they sound unheeded. One hopes that the new Worcester hooter may be regarded with more concern – if it is ever blown with serious purpose. The experiments made with it this morning were not precisely inspiring, but they were interesting because of the behaviour of a few whose duty it is to see that the hooter hoots efficiently. At one time they gathered at the Cross and listened to the symphony played upon it at the Electricity Works. Generally, it was in a monotone, like a number of bulls bellowing in unison, but we should judge that it would not be heard in all parts of the city sufficiently to cause alarm. At this office we began to wonder if a tug on the river was in trouble at the bridge. One would have wished that the demonstration had lasted a little longer, not because the sound was pleasant, but because the little company at the Cross, who held a confab while the operator at the works varied the note (though he made it no more musical), were becoming a source of entertainment to onlookers and would soon have been the focus of a curious crowd;

Two War lectures were given at the Assembly Rooms, Malvern by Mr. Hilaire Belloc, whose articles in “Land and Water” are closely studied week by week by those who wish to follow intelligently the varying phases of the Titanic struggle which affects more than half the world;

Orders have now been given for the preliminary steps to be taken to raise the 2nd Reserves of the 7th and 8th Battalions. The main units went to the East Coast some months ago, and the Reserves went to the East Midlands three weeks ago. Now two other Battalions are to be formed, each of 1,000 men. Recruits for these Battalions are urgently required.

Information researched by Sue Redding