Christmas Day 1917 Tuesday

Christmas Day celebrations.

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“It snowed heavily all day, so that we had a real old-fashioned Xmas! In the morning I paid visits to all the Companies, and also went on to Erquinghem, where some of us fore-gathered at ‘Alice’s’, and had a merry sing-song. In the afternoon all our men had a great feed in the cinema and YMCA in Erquinghem. They had a fine time, and plenty to eat and drink. 

Twenty-seven of us sat down to our Xmas dinner at 8 p.m. in our cold and damp mess-room dug-out. The dinner was great, and was a credit to our cook, and his willing assistants. We had soup, fish, turkey and vegetables, plum-pudding, savoury, fruit, nuts, sweets, cigars and wines. It was a great night. The Padre got rather muddled, and hit the Colonel on the back of the head with a juicy orange! The Colonel retired after that! With speeches and songs the evening soon sped by, and we finished at midnight with a snowball fight!”

This was Douglas’s third Christmas of the war. 1915 was spent with the men of the 130th (St. John) Field Ambulance in Calonne

1916 was with hospital patients in Bonnie Scotland

and now he is back on the Western Front in the company of the 13th Btn. Royal Welch Fusiliers for his third season of wartime festivities.

It all seemed to go very well allowing for the padre getting a little “muddled”. Muddled as newt by the sound of it.

Find out about our connection with Dr Page and an introduction to his diary here