Diaries; 17th – 30th April 1916.

Monday 17th April: proven

Everything going on as usual only some of the 6th Division have returned here from their rest at Calais.

Tuesday 18th to Wednesday 26th April: Proven

Nothing doing. Weather changeable.

Thursday 27th April: Proven

Seven of us are being taught to drive the Motor Ambulance Cars.

Friday 28th to Sunday 30th April: Proven

Still the same.

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Diaries; 11th – 16th April 1916.

Tuesday 11th April: Proven/Poperinghe

Weather bad. A party of us went to Poperinghe station on a fatigue for the day.

Wednesday 12th April: Proven

Last night just after we left Poperinghe the Germans shelled it. Three of No. 9 Field Ambulance were killed and five wounded.

Thursday 13th April: Proven

Weather improving. We are still looking after the sick here at Proven.

Friday 14th and Saturday 15th April: Proven

Nothing doing.

Sunday 16th April: Proven

All leave cancelled, something in the wind.

Diaries; 1st – 10th April 1916.

Saturday 1st April: Proven

Very heavy artillery fire coming from the direction of Ypres.

Sunday 2nd April: Proven

Things are getting very lively up Ypres way this last two or three days by all accounts.

Monday 3rd April: Proven

The Canadians are supposed to have done some fine work on the right of Ypres; taking some prisoners.

Tuesday 4th April: Proven

We don’t get the same chance of learning what is going on up the line back here but expect we will be up there soon enough.

Wednesday 5th April: Proven

A very quiet day, nothing doing.

Thursday 6th April: Proven

A heavy bombardment early this morning, Ypres way.

Friday 7th to Monday 10th April: Proven

Nothing doing.

Diaries; 26th – 31 March, 1916.

Sunday 26th March: Proven

Still here and nothing doing.

Monday 27th March: Proven

We have just heard that the 20th Division have taken two lines of trenches on the right of Ypres at St. Elio.

Tuesday 28th March: Proven

The Artillery are very lively about Ypres by the sound of the guns from here.

Wednesday 29th March: Proven

A heavy bombardment on by the noise of the guns.

Thursday 30th March: Proven

The German Artillery shelled the Guard’s trenches all day causing a great amount of casualties mostly of the 1st Scotch Guards.

Friday 31st March: Proven

We have taken into our Hospital and Rest Camp a great amount of the Guards suffering from shell shock and slight wounds. The serious wounded are sent down the line to the base.

Diaries; 19th – 25th March, 1916.

Sunday 19th March: Proven

We are going to have a safe and easy time here, only sick to look after and to improve the place.

Monday 20th March: Proven

The 6th Division have been running this place before us and it was the 6th the Guards relieved and they have now gone down to Calais for a rest.

Tuesday 21st March: Proven

There is going to be nothing to write about here as it is the same work day after day, very uninteresting but very safe.

Wednesday 22nd March: Proven

Still the same.

Thursday 23rd March: Proven

We had a change in the weather last night, snow was falling heavily and still falling today.

Friday 24th March: Proven

The snow is clearing away and the weather is improving again.

Saturday 25th March: Proven

Weather good. A good deal of sick came in today.

Diaries; 12th – 18th March, 1916.

Sunday 12th March: Calais

We witnessed a very good football match between the 1st Scotch Guards and the 3rd Coldstreams which ended in a 0-0 draw after extra time had been played.

Monday 13th March: Calais

The weather here has improved a good bit. The Scotch Guards beat the Coldstreams today 2-1. In the afternoon our C.O. took us round the bake-house at Calais, where the bread is made for the troops, it is a wonderful sight.

Tuesday 14th March: Calais

We had a very severe thunderstorm over here last and it has been very misty all day. The Scotch Guards beat the Grenadiers in the final for the Calais Cup 1-0.

Wednesday 15th March: Calais

We leave here tonight and have been packing up all day. We left at 9.45pm and marched to the station outside Calais where we entrained.

Thursday 16th March: Calais/Cassel/ Winnezeele

The train steamed off at 2am and arrived at our destination Cassel at 6am. After
disembarking we marched to the village of Winnezeele where we billeted in a barn for the night. The weather is splendid.

Friday 17th March: Winnezeele/ Proven (Belgium)

We marched off from Winnezeele at 10am and marched on till we came to the village of Proven where we took over a Hospital and rest camp for the sick from No. 9 Field Ambulance. We marched 15kms today and for the third time in this war, we have marched into Belgium.

Saturday 18th March: Proven

We are to be here for some time are going to run this place for the sick of the Division. The other two Ambulances of the Division are going to look after the wounded. This village of Proven is only a few miles in Belgium and is only a small place about 10 miles from the nearest point of the firing line. One good thing about this place-everything is cheaper here than in France. The weather these last few days has been splendid.

Diaries; 5th – 11th March, 1916.

Sunday 5th March: Calais

Weather fair but dull. The 1st Brigade leave here today and tomorrow the 2nd Brigade will be taking their place.

Monday 6th March: Calais

Weather again dull but dry, some of the 2nd Brigade arrived here. One of our Ambulance has died of pneumonia in the hospital at Calais where a great many had gone sick.

Tuesday 7th March: Calais

Another snow storm is on today and the snow is lying over a foot deep, fine weather to be under canvas.

Wednesday 8th March: Calais

The snow is clearing away but it is still very cold at night. We gave the chap who died a military funeral today.

Thursday 9th March: Calais

We had a better day here today though it is still cold. I had a chat with a few of the Kingston Boys who are in the 1st Scotch Guards.

Friday 10th March: Calais

Another bombing accident happened here today; the 3rd Grenadiers were practising bomb throwing when one burst killing 3 and wounding 21.

Saturday 11th March: Calais

Five more of the men wounded here yesterday have died. The weather has improved.

Diaries; 1st – 4th March, 1916.

Wednesday 1st March: Calais

A wet and miserable morning but it brightened up in the afternoon and we were able to get a route march to stretch our legs.

Thursday 2nd March: Calais

A better day, more route marching and physical drill.

Friday 3rd March: Calais

Another day of rain. The Irish Guards were practising bomb throwing in the forenoon when the “Padre” dropped one which killed Lord Fitzgerald, wounded the Padre and three other Officers and one Private.

Saturday 4th March: Calais

A better day, route marching and parades.

Diaries; 26th – 29th February, 1916.

Saturday 26th February: Calais

Another day of snow and frost, it is still very cold. The 1st Brigade are coming here next.

Sunday 27th February: Calais

It was still snowing this morning but in the afternoon it turned to rain and when we went to bed at night it was raining in torrents.

Monday 28th February: Calais

It was again snowing when we got up this morning and it has again turned to rain in the afternoon. We can’t get anything done but have to try and keep dry and warm inside the tent.

Tuesday 29th February: Calais

This has been a better day, not nearly so cold but at night it again turned to rain.

Diaries; 19th – 25th February, 1916.

Saturday 19th February: Calais

This has been a very good day, just like summer. Every man of the 3rd Brigade here is undergoing the strictest training. Route marching and all kinds of trench warfare.

Sunday 20th February: Calais

Another fairly good day but it broke down in the afternoon. The Belgian flying ground is next to our camp and all the troops parade on it. In our spare time, we also watch the airmen going up and coming down. We of the Ambulance are getting it very easy at present.

Monday 21st February: Calais

This has been a very cold day and nearly everybody has the cold; otherwise, the sea air is doing us good.

Tuesday 22nd February: Calais

Another cold day, we are getting a late winter here now and it is very cold sleeping under canvas.

Wednesday 23rd February: Calais

I had a walk into Calais which is two miles from our camp. It is a fine town and not unlike Edinburgh in places. The weather is getting even colder.

Thursday 24th February: Calais

The weather is now like mid-winter and we had a heavy fall of snow last night and frost has now set in.

Friday 25th February: Calais

It has snowed very heavily all last night and today it is very cold. The 3rd Brigade leave here today and tomorrow but we are to stay here till the other two Brigades of the Division have each done 8 days here. This is to save the other Ambulances from coming here.