Sharon's blog

3rd Battalion British West Indies Regiment

3rd Battalion British West Indies Regiment

The following article was contributed by Paul Finnegan Royal British Legion, Halesowen Branch July 2015

On a recent visit to Ypres I visited Ypres Reservoir Cemetery in the town, primarily to see the grave of VC recipient Brigadier General Francis Aylmer Maxwell. The information panel at the entrance to the Cemetery stated that there were six graves of men who served with the British West Indies Regiment So I sought to find one. 

SS Empire Windrush Remembrance Sunday Service

HMS Forward Supports SS Empire Windrush Remembrance Sunday

SS Empire Windrush Remembrance Sunday is an annual event held at Holy Trinity Church. As with all Services of Remembrance it offers us a moment of reflection, contemplation and celebration for the achievements made by the people from the Caribbean who once again answered England's call for help.

In 1948, skilled professionals joined returning military personnel to help rebuild, care and protect a war torn country.

ANZAC, Gallipoli and WW1

ANZAC Day - Cannock Chase

ANZAC Day (25th April) honours the members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli against the Ottoman Empire. It also marks the anniversary of the first military action fought by the Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.

ANZAC day is observed in the Cook Islands, Niue, Pitcairn Islands and Tonga. It was previously a national holiday in Papua New Guinea and Samoa.

In memory of the SS Mendi

In memory of the SS Mendi

On 21 February 1917, during the 1st World War, Mendi was transporting 823 personnel of the South African Native Corps to France. She had sailed from Cape Town to Lagos (Nigeria) where a gun was fitted to her stern, then on to Plymouth; before proceeding towards Northern France.

At 5am, while being escorted by the destroyer HMS Brisk, Mendi was struck amidships and almost cut in half by the SS Darrow, an empty meat ship bound for Argentina.

616 South Africans (607 of them black troops) plus 30 crew members, mostly British, died in the disaster.

India's Contribution to the First World War

India's Contribtion to the First World War. British Empire

Undivided India which includes the Countries today called Pakistan, Bangladesh, Burma (Myanmar) Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Nepal contributed to the war efforts by sending over 1,105,000 Indian personnel overseas.

India's contribution was not confined to the army. The Royal Indian Marine was armed in 1914, some of its ships serving with the Royal Navy on escort duties and others as costal minesweepers or river gunboats in the Mesopotamia campaign.

The role of the Indian merchant services in transportation and supply was no less essential than that of their comrades in arms.

Menin Gate

Menin Gate

Since 1928, the notes of the Last Post have broken the silence across the cobbled streets of Ypres, a town entirely rebuilt from the rubble and devastation that had been visited upon Flanders during the First World War.

The vast, white, Portland-stone walls of the Menin gates are engraved with the names of nearly 55,000 British and Commonwealth Soldiers lost on the field of battle but with no know graves; a son, a father, a brother. These men are long gone but the residents of Ypres make sure they are not forgotten.

Walter Tull and the First World War

Walter Tull

Courtesy of Russell Edwards

Picture the scene: A man lies pole-axed on the floor whilst his colleagues plead with a higher source to help him and fight off the enemy; a scene from a Manchester derby? No, this is the Somme, 25th March 1918, the war to end all wars; Walter Tull about to draw his last breath.

Breaking the Stereotype

West Indian Veteran

Vincent Daniel was destined to follow the family trend and join the teaching profession until the Army was suggested as an alternative and means to learning a trade. On 4th September 1964; aged 19, he began basic training at Sutton Coldfield Barracks as a Fusilier with the Royal Warwickshire Regiment.


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