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Key dates over March 1918

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Lives lost on this day: 104

22nd March 1918 - Disappeared when on Bail

Rolling casualty count: 8775

War Front:

1st Batt: Batt proceeded by route march from Meringhem to St Omer where it entrained for Nesle.

2nd Batt: Coys entrained at St Pierre Siding preparatory to Batt relieving the 16th KRRC in support at Cordial Factory.

3rd Batt: Batt HQ moved to a deeper dug-out. Major Traill took over command of Batt as Lt Col PR Whalley, DSO who was ordered back to HQ. B and C Coys were ordered to extend the left flank along the northern side of Maricourt Wood towards Vaux Wood, where fresh attacks on the Corps Line were taking place. A Batt was withdrawn from the left so B and C Coys were ordered to withdraw to the Sunken Road. As attacks were heavy, only C Coy could be extricated. A and B Coys inflicted heavy losses on the enemy. During this day, Capt JM Lett, Lt DG Herries, Lt FG Elliot, 2LT A Houghton were killed and 2Lt C Latham was wounded.

4th Batt: Batt relieved the 2nd South Wales Borderers in the left sub-section of the Divisional Sector (Passchendaele,) 3 Coys being conveyed by train from Poperinghe to Spree Farm. 1 Coy went to Wieltje, W Coy went to support at Wallemolen and Inch Houses, X Coy was at Kronprinz and Y Coy at English Camp.

10th Batt: The enemy was not 50 yards away but Worcs Coys held the Line parallel to the Sunken Road. Enemy was now in full possession of the Ridge west of Louverval, but they tried 3 times to take the Worcs Coys in the flank and failed. The spirit of the defence was marvellously sustained by the example and courage of Capt. GMI Blackburne. After darkness the Batt covered the withdrawal of the Highland Batts who had been holding the trenches and fighting for 48 hours.

Home Front:

On Thursday evening Mr. W.B. Hulme (the City Coroner) resumed the inquest as to the death of George Albert Leeke (52), wood carver, of 37 Lich Street. The Coroner informed the Jury that an analysis of the contents of the bottle, from which Leeke was seen to drink, revealed that it contained morphine hydrochloride and that there was a quarter of a grain of morphia per dose. Mr. S. C. Legge, surgeon, continuing his evidence, said that the five or six mouthfuls of the mixture which Leeke took would be sufficient to cause death, especially as he was in an enfeebled condition. Witness cited the fact that one grain of morphia had been known to cause death. The symptoms were confirmatory of morphine poisoning. The Jury returned a verdict that “Death was due to an overdose of morphia, taken by misadventure.”

“Summer-Time” comes into operation during the night Saturday-Sunday, when clocks must be put forward an hour. Officially the change will take place at 2 am, when railway clocks will jump forward an hour and trains thenceforward will run accordingly. For the majority of people, however, the lost hour-to be recovered on the last day of September- will be taken out of the Saturday, when clocks and watches are wound prior to the household retiring to bed. It should be pointed out that in the case of striking timepieces the clock should be allowed to strike fully the hour, half-hour and quarter as the hands are moved.

Disappeared when on Bail: George Passey, late of 45 Dent Street, Canal Side, Worcester, was charged with failing to appear at the Worcester Quarter Sessions in July last on three charges of fowl stealing. Inspector Price gave evidence of identiy and said that prisoner, who was committed for trial to the Quarter Sessions some months ago, was arrested in Sheffield. Prisoner was committed to prison until the next Quarter Sessions.

Rummage Sale for Mayor’s Fund: On Thursday, at the Corn Exchange, a rummage sale was held in aid of the Mayor’s Fund for providing homes for disabled soldiers and sailors. Miss Jones, of 52, Broad Street, was in charge of the sale and was assisted by other ladies, many of whom acted as stallholders.As early as 1 pm people began to collect outside the gates of the Corn Exchange waiting to purchase a the sale and at 3 pm there was a large crowd. The people entered in groups of ten or twenty to make their purchases, but the supply was not equal to the demand and by 4.15pm the stocks, consisting mostly of clothing, gave out. There were a number of articles and all descriptions of hardware, which quickly found a market. Unfortunately, owing to other engagments, the Mayor and Mayoress, who had hoped to attend, were unable to do so.

Information researched by The Worcestershire World War 100 team