Somme Harvest

Discussion in 'Books and Films' started by liverpool annie, May 30, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    I read this review on WW1 cemeteries and found it in my little book store here ! ... oh my ! I kept thinking of my Granddad ( in the Rifle Brigade ) who was all around that area .... this man was a very brave man ... in fact they all were ... to go through what they went through is beyond belief !! :(

    SOMME HARVEST by Giles E M Eyre

    Publisher: Naval and Military Press

    ISBN: 1843421097

    First Published 1938 Re-Published By Naval and Military Press 2001

    Sub titled “Memories of a P .B. I. in the Summer of 1916” his excellent and very moving volume recalls the war time experiences of a rifleman whilst serving in the 2nd Battalion of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps as he fought in the trenches of France in the period between May and July 1916.

    Some may of course wonder how one man – an ordinary Rifleman, could fill a 260 page volume with his experiences, for what is, in the whole context of the Great War, a relatively short period of time. Having read the volume from cover to cover, I can now appreciate that this brave but amazingly un-decorated man experienced more fighting and scenes of death and carnage than many did in the whole of the war and perhaps their lifetime too.

    The author enlisted in August 1914, and having served in one of the two Special Reserve battalions at Sheerness, was soon posted to 7th KRRC (one of the first of that regiment’s Kitchener battalions) at Winchester. He moved to France with his battalion in May 1915 and subsequently fought at Hooge when the Germans used the dreadful flame-thrower for the first time and on the 30th July that year alone, his battalion suffered no less than 300 casualties. In December 1915 he too was wounded and returned to England to convalesce. hence the reason this account opens after he returned to France, when his new battalion (2 KRRC ) launched a large scale raid on the Triangle at Loos – a raid which cost over 240 casualties, including Rifleman William Mariner VC, who was blown to pieces in front of the author! Graphic descriptions of further bitter fighting follow and cover subsequent events up until the actions at Bazentin and Pozières Ridge where his battalion commander, company commander and sergeant major were killed and he was eventually taken prisoner.

    Military historians with a general interest in the Great War and family history researchers with a special interest in the King’s Royal Rifle Corps will find this volume fascinating. Many men are mentioned by name too, therefore aiding research.

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