We refused peace terms thinking the Germans were “on the run”.

Inserted at the front of Florence Vansittart Neale’s diary are her notes made sometime in December 1917 on war news. The impact of America joining the war was beginning to be felt.

December 1917

Hear 4 generals sent home without return tickets!

Hear Germans offered good peace terms 3 months ago. We refused thinking they were “on the run”.

Our troops hissed going through Rome. Cadorna hated by Army – he the Vatican’s party.

Coldstreams scared 91,000 prisoners being taken.

One HQ taken – generals and colonels still adding.

Hear American troops to be trained in Ireland to shame the Irish.

500,000 Americans already in France.

Hear through W Grimmett last push we took any amount of stores & clothing, made light railway & sent it to base before 2 days.

Hear another push is to begin soon.

Americans getting to France about 5000 a week.

Diary of Florence Vansittart Neale of Bisham Abbey (D/EX73/3/17/8)

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A record of which we may well be proud

Ascot churchgoers sent care parcels to their friends in the forces, and entertained strangers in the Royal Flying Corps.

ASCOT SAILORS AND SOLDIERS COMMITTEE.

In January a parcel was sent to Ascot men in the Navy or Army serving abroad “with every good wish for a happy New Year from your friends in Ascot.” The parcel contained a fitting writing case, a pair of thick socks, and some candles for the men in the trenches, and was sent to 12 men in the Navy, 75 men in France, and 13 in Egypt, Salonica and Mesopotamia.

Many letters have since been received from the men thanking Ascot for their kind thoughts of them, and giving good accounts of themselves. The cost of the parcels with the postages has more than exhausted the funds at the disposal of the Committee, and we must hope of means of replenishing the fund before long.

We are very pleased to hear that Sergeant Grimmett has been recommended for a commission, and we cordially congratulate him. This will make the sixth commission specially earned by Ascot, and is surely a record of which we may well be proud. The names of the gallant six are- 2nd Lieuts. Baker, Grimmett, Robinson, Stuart, Taylor and Watson, and we wish them “Good Luck.”

We regret to have to add the name of William J. Tidy (Gun Section H. A. C.) to our Prisoners of War.

CLUB ROOM for the men of the Royal Flying Corps.

Through the earnestness and energy of several ladies of All Saints congregation a Club Room has been opened at the Fire Brigade Station in High Street, the Committee of the Brigade having most kindly lent their premises for the purpose.

Ascot section of Winkfield District Magazine, March 1917 (D/P151/28A/9/3)

Mosquito nets and sandbags

Ascot ladies’ sewing now including manufacturing mosquito nets, perhaps for those wounded in fighting in the Middle East.

All Saints Parish Working Party for the War will re-open Thursday, October 5th, at 2 p.m, and will be continued on subsequent Thursdays until further notice. The Working Party has now been formally affiliated with the Ascot War Hospital Supply Depot, and, so far, eight War Office badges have been awarded as follows: Mrs. Bunce, Mrs. Ednie, Mrs. Grimmett, Mrs. Hullcoop, Mrs. Moore, Mrs. Morton, Mrs. Sumner, Miss A. Winter.

The number of articles made by the Working Party up to date has been.-

130 Capeline bandages, 5 hip bandages, 75 bed jackets, 35 shirts, 45 pairs socks, 30 pairs operation stockings, 80 cushions, 60 mosquito nets, 40 small beaded mats, 117 sandbags: total 637.

Donations made to the amount of £59 17s. 4d. have been received: expenditure, £44 0s. 11d.: leaving a balance in hand of £15 16s. 5d.

Further contribution will be gratefully received by Mrs. Tottie, Sherlocks, Ascot.

Ascot section of Winkfield District Magazine, October 1916 (D/P151/28A/8/10)

“His passing-on brings the realities of war close to home”

The people of Ascot supported the war in multiple ways.

THE WAR.

We deeply regret to have to record the death of Pte. Harry Freeman, killed in France. His family is so well known and respected in Ascot, and he himself, as one of our old School boys, and in the Choir, so familiar a figure among us in the past years, that his passing-on brings the realities of war close to home. His parents and sisters have our deepest sympathy.

Pte. Jack Jones, having recovered from his wound, has been at home for a week, and is now stationed at Portsmouth for a short time. He is one of the 9 survivors out of 25 engaged in digging a trench in the open.

Another of our wounded, Archibald Grimmett, is doing fairly well, we are thankful to say, but has not yet recovered the use of his side. He is now at Southbourne.

Percy Huxford and Richard Taylor are prisoners of war in Germany.

Our other wounded are doing well.

TWO SPECIAL INTERCESSIONS SERVICES will be held during Advent, on Tuesday, December 7th, at 7.30 p.m., in the Parish Room, when the names of all those at the Front whose homes are in the Brookside District of the Parish will be specially remembered before GOD; and on Monday, December 13th, at 7.30 p.m. in the Church, for those whose homes are in the London Road and High Street Districts. It is earnestly hoped that the near relatives of our Ascot lads, in each case, will be present at one or other of these prayer meetings, so that, all together, we may unite in prayer to our Father in Heaven for those whom it is our bounden duty to pray.

A “PRISONERS OF WAR” box is placed inside the Church, for which offerings are invited. We hope to send out to our prisoners Christmas parcels: and we look forward, if the offering allow, to send them further parcels from time to time.

WAR HOSPITAL STORES DEPOT.

It may interest those of our readers who are working at the Ascot War Hospital Stores Depôt to know that over 46,000 articles have been sent to the Hospitals abroad since the depôt opened on June 22nd last. The work is continuing at full swing, though more helpers will be gladly welcomed by Lady Susan Dawnay at the depôt room above the Military Hospital at any time on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and on Thursdays from 10 a.m. till dark. 28 crates and 3 bales have already been sent to the following Hospitals:

21st British General Hospital, Alexandria, 2 crates
French Military Hospital, Ducey, France, 2 crates
Belgian Military Hospital, Calais, 2 crates
British General Hospital, Havre, 2 crates
British General Hospital, Lemnos, 5 crates
“Entente Cordiale” Hospital, Mentone [Menton, France], 3 crates
Belgian Field Hospital, Dunkirk, 2 crates
“Border” (British) Hospital for French Soldiers, France, 2 crates
French Hospital, Château du Franc Port, Compiègne, 1 crate
Ascot Military Hospital, 1 crate
Italian Field Hospital on Austrian Frontier, 1 crate and 1 bale
No. 12 British General Hospital, Rouen, 2 bales
Belgian Hospital (c/o Belgian Soldiers Fund) 2 crates

“Two crates” contain approximately the following articles :
1000 bandages, 24 many-tailed bandages, 24 T-bandages, 24 slings, 24 knee many-tailed bandages, 24 head or stump bandages, 12 chin bandages, 50 pairs of splints, 1000 puff swabs, 1 gross Turkish towelling swabs, 1 gross eye swabs, 1 gross solid gauze swabs, 1 gross gauze and wool swabs, 1000 flat swabs, 1000 plugs, 12 pillows, 6 pairs of crutches, 24 pairs of socks, 24 pyjamas or night shirts, 12 bed jackets, 24 shirts. Consignments of blanket shave also been sent.

BELGIAN SOLDIERS FUND. £6 9s 0d. has been sent to the above Fund from Ascot Parish.

Ascot section of Winkfield District Magazine, December 1915 (D/P151/28A/7/12)

Who will come forward?

The parish of Ascot was keenly concerned with remembering its men in service, while coping with their lack at home.

THE WAR.

We have the following records to make.

Pte. Frederick Waite of the 3rd Batt. Royal Fusiliers has fallen in the Service of his country. Lance Corporal Stanley writes:-

“He was killed in action on the 29th of last month, doing his duty for King and country. I lost the best man in my section, and he was liked by all the platoon. We buried him the same night with his head facing the Germans.”

Our deepest sympathy is given to the family, who reside in Course Road. R.I.P.

Thomas Hudson is missing.

Percy Huxford is a prisoner of war. He writes:

“I am wounded and a prisoner. I am wounded in the fore arm, but not very bad.”

Richard Taylor is prisoner of war. He writes brightly.

The following are wounded:-
Harold Matthews, Archibald Williams Grimmett, Jack Jones, Alfred Baker, Henry Edward Freeman, Arthur Everett, Leslie Henry Walls, George Faithful, Frederick Bettison, William Skelton, Harry Henley, Frederick Wye, E.J. Streater.

The list of our Ascot men at the Front is always read out in full at the service on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. We are extremely anxious that this list should be entirely accurate. A Box for “Communications about the War” is placed on the table at the West end of the Church, in which you are invited to place any additions or corrections that may be necessary from time to time.

* * *

WHO WILL COME FORWARD to fill vacancies that stare us in the face, owing to the demands which the war makes upon the time of many of our former Church workers? We very specially need one or two Lady communicants to undertake an hour or so’s work at the Church on Saturdays mornings. We imagine that the majority of our people have a very dim conception of all that is entailed, week by week, in the preparation of the Altar, Altar Linen, and Altar Flowers for the Sundays. Moreover the Brasses have to be cleaned. On Sunday last (October 23rd) one lady, and only one, had to undertake the entire work. This ought not to be possible.

Then, we sorely need Choirmen. Even if they have not very brilliant voices, they might come and do their best, and that is all that God asks for. It would rejoice the heart of Mr. Tustin, our painstaking but handicapped Choir Master.

Then, three more Alter Servers are asked for.

* * *

WAIFS AND STRAYS SOCIETY.
This admirable organisation is holding its Annual Sale of Work, on November 10th and 11th, at the Portman Rooms, Baker Street. It has under its charge the many children of Sailors and Soldiers. Lady Jellicoe and Lady French will be present at the sale. Contributions, requests for tickets, &c. should be addressed to the Central Bazaar Secretaries, Old Town Hall, Kennington Road, S.E.

Ascot section of Winkfield District Magazine, November 1915 (D/P151/28A/7/11)