We can see the beginning of the end – far off

The parish of Clewer was encouraged by news of the Battle of the Somme, but their optimism was rather premature.

The “Great Offensive”, which began in this month [July], has been so far wonderfully successful, and gives promise of further and greater successes in the near future. In fact, we are able to see in it the beginning of the end, though the end must necessarily be far off. The great sacrifice of human life fills our hearts with sadness, and at the same time with pride as we think of the [sic] magnificient heroism of our soldiers of all ranks. Two of our own residents, Frederick Ash and —— Horsgood are amongst those who in the past month have laid down their lives for their country, and in addition to George Buckell and Ernest Jackson who were lost in the Great Naval Battle off Jutland. Our deepest sympathy goes out to their sorrowing relatives, whose one consolation must be that their dear ones died doing their duty. We humbly commend their souls to Him who has told us that, “Greater love hath no one than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends”.

Clewer St Andrew parish magazine, August 1916 (D/P39/28A/9)

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