Monday, 13 July 2009

Donald Banks - war diary, France 1915

Last Friday I published the war diary kept by 16 year old 3546 Private Donald Banks when he enlisted with the 2/4th Lincolnshire Regiment in January 1915. That extract dealt with his time from enlistment up until the time he sailed for France. This post concludes his diary for 1915.

I'd be interested to see the 4th Lincs diary for the period that Donald Banks mentions.

Tue Jun 29th
Got rifles etc. Sailed for France 7pm.

Wed Jun 30th
Anchored and then proceeded up R Seine. Landed at Rouen 3pm.

Sat Jul 3rd
Inspected by General

Sat Jul 24th
Arrived and camped near Poperinghe.

Mon Jul 26th
Started work in 2nd Entrench Battn.

Mon Aug 16th
Left Entrench Batt.

Mon Aug 17th
Joined our Regiment 1/4 Lincolns at Ouderdom.

Sun Aug 22nd
Went into trench A1 near Zillebeke (midnight)

Mon Aug 23rd
In trenches.

Tue Aug 24th
In trenches.

Wed Aug 25th
In trenches. Mortared.

Thu Aug 26th
Work on air pumps to saps.

Sat Aug 28th
Relieved by 5 Leics. Went into railway dug-outs near Ypres-Menin Road.

Sun Aug 29th
In Rail dugouts near Hill Femcourt (?) L. Zillebeke

Tue Aug 31st
Night work on Hill 60.

Thu Sep 2nd
Wounded by shell and buried in dug-out. Loss of eyesight. Blind.

Fri Sep 3rd
Taken to 46th Div rest camp. Blind.

Mon Sep 6th
Recovered sight of left eye at night.

Wed Sep 8th
Recovered sight with both eyes but feebly.

Fri Sep 10th
Taken to hospital at Mont Chat monastery.

Sun Sep 12th
Taken to hospital at Hazebrouck. Temperature up. Put to bed. Rev Watson. Chaplain.

Mon Sep 13th
Put on train. Stretcher case. Taken down to Etaples to 1st Canadian General Hospital.

Tue Sep 14th
Confined to bed all time.

Tue Sep 21st
Left hospital with stretcher cases. Entrained to Calais. Put aboard SS Brighton, left 12 noon, arr Dover 2pm, taken by train to Sheffield Hosp. Wharncliffe War Hospital.

Fri Sep 24th
Got up out of bed.

Mon Sep 27th
First went out of doors.

Tue Sep 28th
King Geo V visited us.

Mon Oct 4th
Discharged from hospital to home.

Sat Oct 16th
Left Lincoln at Belton Park, Grantham.

Tue Oct 19th
Passed unfit at present by doctor.

Mon Oct 25th
Started in office C Coy as clerk.

Sat Oct 30th
Spent afternoon at Lincoln.

Mon Nov 1st
Passed fit by doctor.

Fri Dec 3rd
Discharged from Territorials and altogether from Army. Left Grantham for Lincoln. Went home to Wragby. Applied for and granted a position in RAMC at Lincoln Hospital.

Pte C Bradshaw 3529, MGS B Coy, 2/4 Lincolns, Harpenden Herts
Pte W T Lane 5004, E Coy RM Barracks, Chatham

“For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” ROMANS 8 38.39

In memoriam to the death of a gallant soldier killed by my side near Ypres on Sept 2 by a German High explosive shell.


[The gallant soldier killed next to Donald Banks was his friend, Clarence Pygott. You can read more about him on my Army Service Numbers blog: Donald Banks - A Lincolnshire Terrier. Pictured above, Donald Banks and Ghurkha, France 1915.

See also:

Interview with Donald Banks - Part 1

Also see posts on my Army Service Numbers blog regarding the Lincolnshire Regiment:

The 1st & 2nd Battalions, The Lincolnshire Regiment
The 3rd (Special Reserve) Battalion, The Lincolnshire Regiment
The 4th Battalion, The Lincolnshire Regiment
The 5th Battalion, The Lincolnshire Regiment
The Lincolnshire Regiment - Service Battalions
The Lincolnshire Regiment - 10th Battalion - Grimsby Chums

And also: The Lincolnshire Yeomanry

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