Friday, 12 September 2014

Another Wet Day in France

Saturday 12th September 1914: It has been another wet day in France. The adjutant of the 1st Bedfords tells us: “Advanced. Weather again very bad. Roads a sea of mud”. 

Sadly our contact with the battalion is feeling unwell. He told us: “I woke up feeling very seedy indeed and was violently sick several times and could hardly move. I could not eat any breakfast at all and somehow managed to fall in and move off with the Battalion when we moved off at 5 am”. The act of throwing away his overcoat during the retreat has obviously resulted in a chill after being soaked in yesterday’s rain. He went on: “We marched through several small villages and I felt as if I were going to die all the time and had to several times fall out at the side of the road and be frightfully sick! After about five miles of this and after a long halt I gave up and did the next four hours in the mess cart and managed to sleep most of the time”.

The battalion has had a number of German prisoners with it which they have now surrendered to the authorities. Our source notes: "These prisoners were a most tame lot altogether and were very sorry to leave us and we were sorry to part with them as they had been most useful during our fatigue work. They could practically all speak English and one of them knew one of our men well and had actually worked with him in the Old Kent Road!”

Two companies of the battalion are billeted tonight on the River Aisne.

Sources: X550/2/5; X550/2/7

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