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THE ROAD TO WAR -
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"New Blood".... Recruited
 
Never was any contemplation of a possible defeat by the any of the opposing forces ever considered, whatever the cost, whatever the losses, whatever the sacrifices…The Generals were determined at any and all costs, to “Win This Bloody War”.
By the end of September 1914, the regular British Army had nearly been spent and finished, they had lost tens of thousands of men and the casualty figures were clear indications that the fast growing numbers of dead was increasing daily and needed to be replaced urgently.
High Command realized that by the end of the year the losses would be too much, and many more recruits would be needed very soon.
During that same month of September a campaign for volunteers was launched by Lord Kitchener, who was a hero of Sudan and the Boer wars, his face was seen on thousands of posters distributed throughout towns and cities across England, in uniform, with arm outstretched and finger pointing stated emphatically “Your Country Needs You”. He had hoped his appeal for volunteers would be 100, 000 men to join the regular army for a period of three years. A bill was passed sanctioning the need for at least 500, 000 volunteers, it was hoped they would step forward and join up.
 

The majority of them were very poor and paid meager wages for their hard work, all had very few possessions and were always desperate for money for their families, the appeal by Kitchener also offered relatively good money for their services, and the once in a lifetime opportunity to visit another country, eat good food, drink beer and wine and possibly meet girls.
The poster also stated the pay that these new recruits would receive…7/- shillings a week (£364 a year or 35 pence a week in today’s money) as soldiers. A weekly allowance was granted for their wives and children ranging from 12/6d (62 pence in today’s money) and up to 22/-shilling’s (£1.20 in today’s money) …very hard for any of us to believe today in 2014…!
Lord Kitcheners appeal poster for
more men to fight.
 
 
This to them was an unbelievable offer, it would greatly appeal to many as a means of sending money back to England for their families, it seemed a far better life than in the smoke ridden, noisy, factories throughout England.
The loyalty of the British was soon proved as many hundreds of thousands without fail, marched off to the recruiting offices across the country and signed up.
The British army was amazed at the phenomenal response to Kitchener’s campaign, thousand’s were expected, but it turned out that well over 1, 000, 000 million, had joined up by early 1915, to fight in this “New Army”. This incredible amount of recruits provided enough for 30 divisions of infantry, ready to fight and die for their King and Country. Kitchener was stunned by the response!
Hundreds of thousands of British are now signed –up and ready to “Go to War “
From the vast thousands of raw recruits, many “new battalions” would be formed up from dozens of men and boys that worked together as friends, workmates, and colleagues in the same factory in the same town or city, they had all decided to join up en masse and they would all be in the same battalion to fight together, these were aptly called…Chums or Pal’s Battalions.
Many groups of friends from many varying occupations all signed up, such as those from professional trades, football clubs, shops, factories, local bands, bus and coach companies, and unions, these groups would make up the “New Army” and “New Blood” of Kitcheners now mighty force.
Many of these new battalions originated from the north of England, Lord Derby a politician of strength also from the northwest appealed for volunteers from the industrial areas, this example would soon be followed in many other towns and cities across England, as whole battalions came into force.
Liverpool heeded Lord Kitchener’s words and produced four battalions, other cities not to be outdone as it were also joined up…The Leeds Pals, Bradford Pals, Barnsley Pals, Halifax Pals, Salford Pals, and from Hull came a selection of fine recruits, The Hull Commercials (all local shop assistants), Hull Tradesmen, Hull Sportsmen, followed by The Durham Pals, The Accrington Pals, and the Sheffield City Battalion.
   
Pals battalions mainly from the North of England signed-up en masse to fight
Edinburgh in Scotland provided The 15th and 16th Royal Scots. From Glasgow came The Glasgow Boy’s Brigade, The Glasgow Tramways, and The Lonsdale Battalions. More were soon to join up ready to fight, The Grimsby Chums, The Cambridge Battalion, and eight battalions from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne called, The Newcastle Commercials Pals Battalion.
Many different Battalions formed their own names that were scattered throughout the many main Divisions of the British Army, The Art and Crafts Battalion, the 1st Football Battalion, The Empire Battalion, and The Forest of Dean Pioneer Battalion.
The descendants of those from Scotland and Ireland living in Tyne-side were called, The Tyne-side Scottish, and likewise, The Tyne-side Irish.
These vast selections of battalions would soon be kitted up and shipped to the continent, where the urgency for their participation in the war grew daily, each and every one of them could not for see the terrible tragedy, carnage, horror that would befall most of them in horrific slaughter of their mates and pals!
   
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