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Key dates over December 1914

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Lives lost on this day: 1

15th December 1914 - Recapture of Belgrade by Serbian forces

Rolling casualty count: 552

1st Batt: In Billets ready to move at ‘short notice’; 2nd Batt: Waiting to move at 1 hour’s notice; 3rd Batt: E. Kemmel: Relieved 7th Fusrs in trenches 8pm.

The Worcestershire Football Association came to a wise decision when they resolved to suspend the three cup competitions, notwithstanding the fact that some arrangements had already been made in regard to the senior cup. Such football clubs as have players left, and have certain obligations to perform, will be acting patriotically if they restrict their activities as much as possible during the present crisis. Some people may feel that football should cease altogether and even those who cannot agree with this view, are of opinion that the clubs should proceed as quietly as is consistent with a policy of preventing distress and hardship, and of keeping the organisation in working order. It is in the clubs’ best interests, too, that they should restrict their activities as much as possible to league fixtures, and it is certain that the Worcestershire Association would have suffered grave loss if the cup competition had gone on. The Association has to face a season of exceptional depression, but if the members are loyal they will be able to see things go on with vigour again when the war is over.

St Stephen’s and Claines Villa have each four players in the Army, the majority being in the Territorial Forces. All Norton Barracks’ players are on active service. Between the Barracks’ team and RATA some 45 players were on the League books, and most of these are at the front. Two of their most prominent players have been wounded, viz Sgt Slater, who kept goal, and Cpl T Poolton, their well-known centre-forward. The latter was reported as having died from his wounds, but happily this report was unfounded.

Territorials’ Christmas Leave: The Territorials in the city are to have six days’ leave, which they will take in in three batches. The first start their leave today.

More Supply Teachers Needed: The Chairman said because of the number of teachers who had gone on active service the supply teachers were exhausted, and as teachers were continually falling ill it was proposed to appoint 6 more supply teachers. They must keep the schools going and they had the greatest difficulty at the present time, when a teacher fell ill, in finding a teacher and in carrying on the school.

The following, who are connected with Worcestershire county cricket, have joined the colours:- WH Taylor, Cecil Ryder (the Secretary), GJ Jones-Williams (former Secretary), GN Foster, MK Foster, NJA Foster, MFS Jewell, and Collier. Bale the wicket-keeper, was rejected owing to an injured knee. Cecil Ryder is now in Upper Burmah with his regiment.

Information researched by Sue Redding