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1st April 1916 - The Great War, Day by Day - The Wartime Memories Project

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The Wartime Memories Project - The Great War - Day by Day



1st April 1916

On this day:


  • Zeppelin Raid   Zeppelin L11 crossed the coast at Seaham, Co. Durham at 11.00 pm, dropping bombs on Eppleton Colliery, Hetton Downs, Philadelphia and Sunderland. Twenty one bombs were dropped at Sunderland causing severe damage to shops and houses and a tram at the Wheatsheaf Depot. 22 people were killed, with a further 25 seriously injured and over 100 suffered slight injuries. The Zeppelin L11 then headed south flying just off the coast and dropped further bombs on Port Clarence and Middlesborough, where 2 men were injured, and then on Brotton before heading out to sea after midnight.

  • GRM Woolston opened   Government Rolling Mill Woolston, Southampton, Hampshire started in April 1916 for the Production of brass and cupro-nickel strips and cups. First output was Feb 1917. It was under the direct control of Mr. G.H. Robinson.

  • GCF Blackheath opens.   Government Cartridge Factory Blackheath in Staffordshire was started in April 1916 for the production of small arms ammunition. First output was December 1916. It was under the direct control of the Birmingham Metal & Munitions Co.

  • GCF Blackpole opens.   Government Cartridge Factory Blackpole, Worcester started in April 1916 for the production of small arms ammunition. First output was early 1917. It was under the direct control of the King's Norton Metal Co.

  • HMEF Craigleith opens   H.M. Explosive Factory Craigleith, Edinburgh, started in April 1916 for the production of T.N.T. First output was Feb 1917. It was under the direct control of the Lothian Chemical Co.

  • Transport Fired Upon   6th County of London Brigade RFA at Carency. The 16th London Battery registered points behind the German front line from Lorette Observation Point. The Germans are still working hard on the Pimple. A British aeroplane was brought down by enemy anti aircraft guns at 1545 today. From 1900 onwards the enemy fired on our transport in Carency and east of Carency main roads.

    War Diaries


  • Railway Activity   

    Water Tank Building on Candas-Acheux Railway.

    16th Btn. Royal Irish Rifles - Pioneers.

    Railway Candas to Acheux.

    In addition to the ongoing work, evening entertainment was organised from 1900 to 2030. Cinematograph put in an appearance with a new programme of films each day. The Division was able to see itself on parade when it was reviewed by King George V on Hankley Common prior to its departure from England. Charlie Chaplin went down as a great favourite with the French children as well as the troops. Captain Paton, now the Battalion’s Chaplain, had been sent a Pathescope from friends in Londonderry, so cinema shows became more accessible than ever. The Battalion had with it for 3 days the Ulster Divisional Troupe – The Follies (later called The Merry Mauves) and thoroughly enjoyed its performance. There was also a Battalion smoking concert and a regimental minstrel group was formed.

    Railway work continued with some changes in the location of companies and responsibilities of officers.

    Captain Jewell (4 Company) was responsible for the terminus at Candas, for a new diamond crossing, for maintenance of the track and for all infantry working parties in the section.

    Captain Shepperd (1 Company) which now moved out of Acheux, was responsible for the section from Rosel to Punchvillers and for infantry work parties.

    Captain Platt (2 Company) which moved to Acheux was responsible for all buildings, signal boxes and platforms on the line.

    No.3 Company (Captain Chase) which had been on detachment moved back to Battalion Headquarters.

    Lt Dolling was in charge of all petrol pumps along the line and 2/Lt Slater after completion of a survey, was responsible for all steel tanks along the line.

    With the Somme decision now official, as work continued on the railway, up to two companies at a time were sent off for battle indoctrination in the trenches to prepare them for their support role in the coming offensive.

    The Terrors by SN White


  • 1st April 1916 

  • 4th West Yorks man Tees Garrison   4th Battalion, West Yorkshire Regiment leave Redcar, moving a few miles north to West Hartlepool as part of the Tees Garrison in April 1916.

  • Sunderland Attack   Raid by Zeppelin LZ41 (L11) at Monkwearmouth Station Quote: "When first built there was a roof over the lines between the main building at Monkwearmouth Station and the Goods Yard on the west side. This roof provided shelter for the passengers waiting for their trains. On the night of Saturday 1 April 1916 the First World War came to Sunderland in no uncertain terms when German Imperial Navy Zeppelin L11 rained down high explosive and incendiary bombs on both sides of the River Wear. A casualty of the raid was the roof over the railway lines and was never repaired, being removed completely 12 years later in 1928 when the still to be seen platform shelters for the passengers were built."

    For the rest of the story visit the external link provided.

    Tyne & Wear Museums


  • 1st April 1916 Reserve positions

  • Inspection and recreation   9th Lancers

    1st April 1916 - Billets Enquin - The CO inspected the Regimental Scouts at 0930 in work in the field. The 1st Cavalry Division Divisional Marathon Race was run. 2 Other ranks to temp hospital, 1 other rank from base hospital. Strength: Officers 29 ORs 603 Horses 510.

    war diaries


  • 1st April 1916 Actions during 1916

  • 1st Apr 1916 7th Northumberlands on the March

  • 1st April 1916 

  • 1st Apr 1916 Billets Shelled

  • 1st Apr 1916 Rescue Attempt

  • 1st Apr 1916 Football Match

  • 1st Apr 1916 Hostile Shelling

  • 1st Apr 1916 Instruction

  • 1st April 1916 All Fools

  • 1st Apr 1916 In the Trenches

  • 1st of April 1916 Relief begins

  • 1st April 1916 Observation Points

  • 1st of April 1916 Working Parties





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There are:25 articles tagged with this date available in our Library

  These include information on officers service records, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.




Remembering those who died this day.

  • Pte. William Norrish Warren. 9th Btn. Read their Story.

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  • Items from the Home Front Archive


    Do you have any letters, photos, postcards, documents or memorabilia from the Great War? We would love to include copies. Please use this form to submit diary entries and letters or photographs for this new Section: add to this archive.





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