1st Battalion of the Preston Lodge Pals disband…

1st Battalion of the Preston Lodge Pals:

Private Clare Boothman Private Kerilee Doran
Private Bronwyn O’Neill Private Eilidh Aelxander
Private Carrie Bain Private Ailie Inverarity
Private Carley McCann Private Rachael Milne
Private Kristina Burns Private Clara Owen
Private Kristina Burns Private Clara Owen
Private Ciara Restorick Corporal Katie Lynch
Corporal Megan Sutherland Private Aaron Paterson
Corporal Michael King Private Fraser Woods
Private James Armstrong Private Robbie Gray
Private Logan Wilson Private Andrew Ferguson
Private Joe MacFarlane Private Stuart Tait
Private Chris Berg Private Michael Hill
Private Craig Munro Corporal David Noon
Best Pal Dale Denholm Corporal Cameron Black
Corporal Jack Longmuir Seargent Michael Simpson
Field Marshall Des Brogan Colonel Gavin Clark
Major Gillian Duthie Captain Laura Armstrong
Chief Medical Officer Jillian Binnie Lieutenant Lee Moore

Your Battalion successfully completed their mission in Flanders, Ypres Salient and the Somme. You have returned as new men and women. There will never be another 1st Battalion of Preston Lodge Pals. You have made history. You are part of history. You now understand how to acknowledge and respect history without living in the past.

You know nothing is impossible and special places exist. You know secrets others can never share and you have joint experiences they will never understand. You are now veterans of the campaign and can enjoy a deserved rest in civilian life. The 2nd Battalion of the Preston Lodge Pals will set sail in the not so distant future. Newly promoted officers will take command. They will be special too. Until then, the 1st Battalion of Preston Lodge Pals will remain steadfast and true to the sentiments and spirit of our campaign.

Always remember, we’re here because we’re here.

You can access information about any fallen comrade at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website:

http://www.cwgc.org/

To finish we will always remember the songs we sang for hours on end as we made our way to the trenches or home to Blighty…

“Well, how do you do, Private William McBride,
Do you mind if I sit down here by your graveside?
And rest for awhile in the warm summer sun,
I’ve been walking all day, and I’m nearly done.
And I see by your gravestone you were only 19
When you joined the glorious fallen in 1916,
Well, I hope you died quick and I hope you died clean
Or, Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene?

Did they Beat the drum slowly, did the play the pipes lowly?
Did the rifles fir o’er you as they lowered you down?
Did the bugles sound The Last Post in chorus?
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

And did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind
In some loyal heart is your memory enshrined?
And, though you died back in 1916,
To that loyal heart are you forever 19?
Or are you a stranger without even a name,
Forever enshrined behind some glass pane,
In an old photograph, torn and tattered and stained,
And fading to yellow in a brown leather frame?

The sun’s shining down on these green fields of France;
The warm wind blows gently, and the red poppies dance.
The trenches have vanished long under the plow;
No gas and no barbed wire, no guns firing now.
But here in this graveyard that’s still No Man’s Land
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
To man’s blind indifference to his fellow man.
And a whole generation who were butchered and damned.

And I can’t help but wonder, no Willie McBride,
Do all those who lie here know why they died?
Did you really believe them when they told you “The Cause?”
Did you really believe that this war would end wars?
Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame
The killing, the dying, it was all done in vain,
For Willie McBride, it all happened again,
And again, and again, and again, and again”.

One thought on “1st Battalion of the Preston Lodge Pals disband…”

  1. So sad, but exceptionally proud of the exemplary conduct of the battalion…looking forward to our reunion and debrief already!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.