Weymouth at War; WWI and We Welcomed with Open Arms.

End of October 1914 one hundred and twenty wounded Belgian soldiers arrived at Weymouth station on a Red Cross train from Southampton. They were met by the 5th Dorset Voluntary Aid Detachment who oversaw their transfer from carriage to waiting transport and onto Weymouth’s Sanatorium where they were to undergo treatment for wounds that ‘told only too plainly that they had been singled out for attention from the German heavy guns.’

History Repeats; Soldiers & Pandemics

A dread sound that she had heard too often before. The clip-clopping of horse’s hooves on the cobblestones and the beat of muffled drums. Coming into view along the harbour-side is yet another funeral procession. There are sometimes three or four a day. The horses with their black plumes pulling a gun-carriage which bears a coffin. The Military band is playing The Dead March in subdued tones and all the drums are muffled in black crepe.

Weymouth Defences before the Nothe Fort.

It was, indeed, an elegant structure, and well chosen as a military position. The half-moon battery in its front, and which crested the cliff has been swept away with much of the building in its rear by the inroads of the sea.

Sunday Morning Bargains: WWI Aerial Torpedoes & the Boys Own Annual

If I get chance I just love a leisurely mooch around our local car boot for items, mainly things that relate to my interests, local history, but in particular, since having discovered Weymouth’s military past, I’ve become fascinated by life in town for the regular Tommy. Sometimes I come away from my Sunday perambulations empty…

Confessions of a Military Bookaholic

I love an old book, particularly those from the 19th century period, which not surprisingly is what I tend to write about. Not necessarily military either, but if they contain information all to the good. They are filled with the most glorious illustrations, not just those to enhance the stories or articles but also their…

Weymouth’s Little Known Roles in WWI

As time passes so memories fade. As time passes tales of Weymouth’s involvement in the build up to and part played in WWI get forgotten. Weymouth and Portland once had a large military and naval force based in this area. Men were stationed at the Nothe Fort and Red Barracks and of course not forgetting…

Give a Soldier a Football…History of the British Army and Sport

Sport, especially football, seems to have played a major role in a soldiers life, they took it seriously…and I mean VERY seriously! A snippet here taken from The Navy & Army Illustrated of 1899 gives us a taste of a few British army history facts concerning soldiers and sport. It describes the team of the…

And the Band Played On; History of Music from the British Royal Navy

Someone once asked me why I write posts about the navy when my blog and book were entitled Nothe Fort and Beyond.  ‘Beyond’ maybe gives a clue because the Victorian fortifications weren’t built as a stand alone defence. They were not only designed to protect our south coast from invasion but to protect the naval…