17th July 1917 - Postcard

Postcard home to Mum ...

17th July 1917

Full pack to bayonet fighting ground.
Second day of brigade sports.
Rifleman Lee of A Company first in the mile.
QWRs win the championship.
Competitors boozed.

Original diary entry
Original journal notes

"The climax was reached when on July 17th the Queen's Westminsters, after a very keen struggle, won the Brigade Athletic Championship for the second year in succession.
Amongst the events won by the Battalion were the hundred yards and the mile. The latter provided the finest race of the day, and it was won by Rifleman J.Lee of the Transport, who finished 80 yards in front of the favourite, Lance-Sergeant Winterbourne of D Company, the runner-up in the event in the previous year. Rifleman J.Stanton of Transport was second in both the high jump and the long jump, and Lance-Corporal Smith won the bomb-throwing. In the tug-of-war the Battalion team was placed second.
The arrangements on the ground were excellent. In addition to the Divisional band, there were numerous side-shows, amongst which the 'Bow Bells' entertainment and a 'coconut shy' were specially popular. Tea was served in the grounds, and a 'wet' canteen did a roaring trade. Throughout the day the mounted competitors provided themselves and all spectators with plenty of amusement, and one notable race was won by Captain Mackenzie, the transport officer of the Q.V.R., who rode one of the Battalion's mules. At the end of the meeting the prizes were presented by the Comtesse Kergolay, and in the evening the winners of the championship returned in triumphant procession to Sus St. Leger.
The procession was headed by the bugle band, next came the mounted officers, followed by the regimental sergeant-major and the competitors, who rode in G.S. wagons. Many members of the Battalion brought up the rear on foot. On entering the village the victors were hailed by the rest of the Battalion with cheers and confetti, the guard turned out and presented arms, and the competitors were carried shoulder-high to the transport lines, where celebrations of the day's success were continued until the early hours of the morning."

Excerpt from "The War History of the 1st Battalion Queen's Westminster Rifles 1914-1918" [ISBN 1-84342-610-2]