Monday 21 November 2016

Centenary of the sinking of the Hospital Ship "Britannic", sister ship to the R.M.S. "Titanic"

Today marks the Centenary of the sinking of the Hospital Ship “Britannic” on 21st November 1916. There is still speculation as to whether she was torpedoed or hit a mine.   RMS “Britannic” was built by Harland and Wolf, Belfast, as a sister ship to the White Star Line liners RMS “Titanic” and RMS “Olympic”.  “Britannic” was launched in February 1914 then laid up until the British Admiralty requisitioned her for use as a Hospital Ship in 1915.

“Britannic” was steaming from Southampton to Mudros in Greece with 1,065 people on board – 77 nurses, 315 Royal Army Medical Corps personnel and 673 crew members.   An explosion caused her to sink in the Kia Channel near the Greek Island of Kia with the loss of 30 lives, the bodies of 5 of whom were found and buried.

There is a Facebook Group dedicated to the memory of the Hospital Ship “Britannic”:

Sunday 6 November 2016

The Roses of No Man’s Land a song written during WW1 by Jack Caddigan and James Alexander Brennan

Many thanks to Sue Robinson of the Group Wenches in Trenches The Roses of No Man's Land for bringing the song "The Roses of No Man's Land" to my attention.  The song was co-written by Jack Caddigan the lyricist (1879 - 1952) and James Alexander Brennan the song-writer (1885 - 1956). The lyrics were translated into French by Louis Delamarre and the song became popular during the First World War.

It was written as a tribute to the women who went to all the theatres of the conflict to nurse the wounded. The song is still in copyright but you can read both sets of lyrics - English and French - here

Sue Robinson is campaigning for recognition of all the women of WW1 and a special memorial is to be unveiled at Lochnagar Crater.   The Women of War Memorial will be unveiled at Lochnagar Crater, La Boisselle, France at 2.30 pm on 11/11/2016, just after the main ceremony.  All welcome.

To find out more about Sue’s work please see the website

Photo: The cover of the sheet music to the song.