The move to Epping and Luton: February 1915

1915 Buxton to Luton

Course of Entrenching at EppingEpping 1915Epping 1915 paradeEpping Parade 2 1915

These  fascinating photographs were kindly sent by John Duffell and show men of the 2/6th Battalion during their time on an entrenching course at Epping from 8th to 24th February.Epping Brelsfordbrelsford epping

Post Card from 2897 Pte Vernon Brelsford recording his time spent in Epping

Cassiobury Camp summer of 1915

2_6 watford

A group of 2/6th Battalion men at Cassiobury Camp in the summer of 1915 (Photograph by Beckley in Watford). The man on the left is a Bugler and they are all armed with Japanese 6.5mm Type 38 Arisaka rifles. 26th-watford-1915

Another group of 2/6th Battalion men at Cassiobury Camp in the summer of 1915. The man on the left is a Bugler and they are all armed with Japanese 6.5mm Type 38 Arisaka rifles.

2-6th Japanese Rifles

In late 1914/early 1915, Britain acquired 150,000 Japanese rifles, consisting of Type 30 rifles and Type 38 rifles and carbines

1916 Japanese RiflesOn 25th February 1915 the 2/6th Battalion received ‘963 Japanese Rifles and 67 boxes of 1440 rounds of Japanese ammunition’. In early March Letter “B” Company was designated the ‘Imperial Service Company’ and placed under the Command of Capt. Evelyn Brown Johnson. At this time a special ‘1/6th Bn. Reinforcement Company’ was also established and the 1st Reinforcement was dispatched to the 1/6th Battalion in June 1915.

Johnson EB

Evelyn Brown Johnson

The 2/6th Battalion was stationed at Watford from August 1915 until April 1916. During the summer they moved out of billets and pitched Camp in Cassiobury Park.2_6 2

A group of 2/6th Battalion NCOs in Camp near Watford. The men are wearing Imperial Service Badges and a mixture of ‘Regular’ and ‘Territorial Force’ Notts & Derby Shoulder badges (photograph by J Lawrence of Watford)2-6th SergeantThis Seargent is wearing the badge of Instructor of Gymnastics or Serjeant PTI (above) and the man in the middle of the back row is a Corporal Drummer with a drummer also present (below)drummers

2:6th at camp table 1915Some of the same N.C.O.s with 3 Officers, a Warrant Officer and Colour-SergeanttrainingTraining at Luton (photograph courtesy of Graham Conway)2-6th MG Section at Watford 1916Machine Gun section at Watford in 1916

2:8Men of the 2/8th Battalion (taken by Kay Photo near Luton)8th Battalion manThe ‘3-Tier’ shoulder Badge, Cap Badge and Imperial Service Badge all suggest that this is a man from the 1/8th or 2/8th Battalions

The 2/8th Battalion moved to Luton-Dunstable in January 1915 and moved into canvas camp at Cassiobury Park in June. They went back into billets in October 1915 and then to Ireland in April 1916.

I believe that this shows men of the 2/5th or 2/6th Battalion in late 1915.

1/ Mixed shoulder badges

2/ Leather equipment

3) Long Lee and Type 38 rifles 

PC 1915 WatfordPC 1915 Watford back

A sweetheart card sent to 3106 Pte. Cyril Flint of the 2/5th Battalion Sherwood Foresters in August 1915 from Miss Esther Mary Duroe.

For more information on Cyril and Ether please see here