1915: Chilling message from a Post Office Rifleman in France to Cuckfield friend

Mid Sussex Times - Tuesday 06 July 1915


A POST OFFICE RIFLEMAN, writing from France to a friend in Cuckfield, says the battalion has seen some heavy fighting. "We have been through the mill,” he writes, "and have had over 400 casualties, so you can see we have been through it all right. I don't know how some of us got through it at all; it was a proper nightmare. I had one of my chums killed near me; he was shot through the head. It was an awful sight to see your pals falling and lying about and yet could not do anything to help them.


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P.O. Rifles in France c1915 courtesy of 'The Postal Museum': visit postalmuseum.org

We came out of the trenches the next day; it was like heaven after going through that lot. We had a bit of a rest and then went into the trenches again, but it was a lot quieter this time. We were in them six days, it would not have been so bad if we could have got plenty of water, but it was very scarce, and we were only allowed a pint a day, and we had to make all our tea out of that, so washing and shaving were out of the question. You can guess what I looked like when we came out.

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