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Key dates over December 1914

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Lives lost on this day: 1

28th December 1914 - Gold stolen from Foregate Street Station

Rolling casualty count: 565

1st Batt:’B’ Lines: Normal conditions again in the trenches. Relieved and billeted at Red Barn; 2nd Batt: Terribly wet day and night. Trenches in a fearful condition – water in partes being well over knee deep; 3rd Batt: Westoutre: In billets.

The rapid rise of the Severn of last night was continued today, and there is now a larger volume of water in and around the river than at any previous time this winter. In fact, it is more than two years since there was so much flood water in the Severn. This has now reached a height of 11ft 8in (a rise of 2ft 3in since yesterday afternoon), and it is still getting higher. In several places the water is over the banks, the iron railings by the side being the only indication of the presence of the towing path underneath. The meadows on the St John’s side of the river are covered, and the channel almost reaches the level of the Croft, a large part of which is under water.

Cpl John Watts of the 3rd Worcestershires, writing home, says: “I am a very lucky man. Shells have burst over my head, and pals have been killed and wounded all around me, while I have got through. I have lost all my old pals, and there are only a few of us left who came out first. I was with Greenway when he was wounded, but we had to make a bayonet charge, and I have not seen or heard of him since. “

We understand that a daring and successful raid on the Foregate Street Station has taken place recently. The booking office, which was closed as usual during the night, was forced open, the safe was blown open, and about £20 in gold was taken. Both the police and the station authorities are very reticent on the matter.

The Commandant will attend at the Drill Hall, Territorial HQ on the 5th and 8th of January to enrol members and form squads for preliminary drill. Those who are within the recruiting age, and have failed to pass the medical test, should bring with them the application form on which the doctor gave his certificate of unfitness…It is not at present intended to enrol any young men below the recruiting age; therefore those who have sent in cards need not attend. If, later on, it be decided to form a Platoon for youths they will be advised.

Four symbolic figures have just been added to the Queen Victoria Memorial. They represent Labour, Peace, Progress, and Agriculture. Each consists of a human figure and a lion, both of huge proportions. The group is a triumph for Sir Thomas Brook.

Information researched by Sue Redding