The Armed Forces
By the end of WW1 more than a million British and Empire Forces were among the dead and a further 1.25 million were injured, a fifth of them disabled for life.
Four million soldiers returned home to find a shortage of housing and jobs, and a struggling economy. Despite this they brought the same resolve to peace that they had shown in war, helping to rebuild Britain.
Shell shock: The mental health crisis of WW1
We use many colloquial phrases in Britain today, but have you ever wondered where they come from? The phrase shell shock is a good example, understood in general terms to describe a state of severe disbelief or surprise. It’s one of many phrases that dates back to the First World War.Read more
The Wipers Times: A comedy startup from the depths of the trenches
Journalism is an industry which has spanned many centuries, and today there are so many different ways that you can write, both professionally and for fun. The invention of blogging is a relatively new concept, allowing more people to share their own unique stories to a mass audience. During the First World War journalism played a key role in communication about the war and in an interesting turn of events the creation of a humorous newspaper which helped lift the spirits of the troops, in what was an extremely dark time.Read more
Flora Sandes: The only female combat soldier in WW1
Flora Sandes was the only British woman to serve as a combat soldier in the First World War. Wounded fighting as a sergeant with the Serbian army in 1916, she was awarded the country’s highest honour for bravery and became a national hero.Read more
The first Jewish and Indian recipients of the Victoria Cross
The British and French victory at the First Battle of Ypres in 1914 marked the end of the war of movement on the Western Front. Both sides dug in and a line of trenches soon ran from the Channel to the Swiss frontier.Read more
The Christmas Truce
The British Expeditionary Force (BEF) had fought bravely in slowing the German advance in August 1914 and saved the day at Ypres (19 October – 22 November). However, by December 1914 it had suffered around 90,000 casualties. The original force had been almost wiped out.Read more
The first blood transfusion
On 28 July 1917, Second Lieutenant Cyril Edwards was leading his platoon from 2/7th Battalion The Prince of Wales’s Own (West Yorkshire Regiment) on a mission to scout the enemy wire in no-man’s-land near Bullecourt. His men came under attack from enemy grenades.Read more