Thursday, 26 November 2015

A Biggleswade Sergeant and His Turkish Prisoners

 Turkish prisoner-of-war cage (from The History of the Fifth Battalion Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Regiment (TA))

Friday 26th November 1915: Sergeant W Franklin, who was badly wounded at la Bassée, while serving with the 1st Bedfords, and who is now serving with a Garrison Battalion(1) in the Mediterranean, tells us: “I am sure myself and Charlie Brown (another of the Brave Bedfords who was wounded in France) appreciate your kindness (in sending out newspapers). I am stationed some miles from him, but I send the papers to him first opportunity and am going to see him tomorrow, all being well. He is at present employed filling water barges that go to the different places for use of the troops”.

“At present I am employed as a mounted policeman and have to examine passports, not a bad job either. About two months ago I was guarding Turkish prisoners but they have now been moved somewhere else, so I have finished with that job. Perhaps it would be interesting to hear a bit about them. They seemed a sorry lot, very depressed at capture. They say they are all ready to surrender but are compelled to fight, of course you know who by. It seems as if this affair is going to be a long job, but one never knows what we have up our sleeve and we are prepared for all surprises”.

“I see the 5th Beds have been making a name and I am very glad to hear it. It makes one glad to belong to a branch of the service that proves itself in action. Give my best respects to all the boys at Biggleswade. I am pleased to see a few more have decided to shoulder arms”.

“We get good weather here on the average but it is a dusty place and the flies are awful when it is hot. Am about to go on duy”.

Source: Biggleswade Chronicle 26th November 1915

(1) Not in the Bedfordshire Regiment as the 1st Garrison Battalion served in India, 2nd Battalion in what is now Pakistan and 3rd Battalion in Burma.

No comments:

Post a Comment