12th April 1917

The issue of draft kit gave us the clue to our destination.

Not for us the khaki shorts, the pith helmets or the sands of the deserts.  The long woolly pants, the thick shirts and the overcoats could only mean the Western Front and with the newspapers making the most of the victory of the Rimy Ridge we had no qualms – the war was nearly over.  The embroidered QWR shoulder flashes, the insignia of the overseas man, were sewn on with schoolboyish enthusiasm.  The stiff Broderick cap was converted into the overseas ‘soft’ variety by removing the stiff wire with less enthusiasm.  The packet of first field dressing complete with iodine phial was stitched up in the small pocket at the bottom of the uniform jacket.

Original diary entry