WHEN THE OFFICE WENT TO WAR: War Letters


WHEN THE OFFICE WENT TO WAR: War Letters

CLARE HORNE & KATHRYN PHELPS    Book Number: 83694    Product format: Hardback

Here we have a most unusual anthology of WWI letters. In the course of the Great War the men of the Great Western Railway Audit Office who were serving in the armed forces kept up regular correspondence of letters, postcards and photographs with their pals in their old office in Paddington. These communications were collated into 12 monthly "newsletters" by their colleagues, starting in August 1915, and these were circulated around the GWR departments and also to the men themselves when home on leave or returned home injured. Clearly much organisation went into the newsletters, as one would expect from an audit office, and the commitment to keeping up contact at all costs is evident, as the boss wrote in the first newsletter - "are we in touch with all the fellows away, and if not, why not?" The "GWR Fellows" saw action chiefly in France and Belgium, but also men served and wrote from the Dardanelles, India, Greece and Egypt and their letters home give a unique insight into the war. These letters were written to inform and entertain their colleagues rather than to comfort a distressed parent or distant wife or girlfriend and so they bring this distinct band of individuals to life. The stories are retold chronologically in order to recreate the suspense the office would have felt waiting to hear from the Front and it is particularly poignant to read about their experiences in the horrors of the trenches and how their views on the war change as the fighting drags on, despite the best efforts of the censor's blue pencil. The book concludes with mini-biographies of all the soldiers and office staff that feature. With 16 pages of colour and sepia plates plus other b/w illus. 304pp.
Published price: £14.99
Bibliophile price: £2.00


Additional product information

ISBN 9781844862801
Browse these categories as well: Last Chance to buy!, Transport, War Memoirs

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