The Wartime Memories Project - The Great War

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site you agree to accept cookies.

If you enjoy this site please consider making a donation.

    Site Home

    Great War


    Add Stories & Photos


    Allied Army

    Day by Day

    War in the Air

    Prisoners of War

    War at Sea

    Training for War

    The Battles

    Those Who Served


    Civilian Service

    Women at War

    Life on Home Front

    Central Powers Army

    Central Powers Navy


    World War Two


    Add Stories & Photos

    Time Capsule


    Help & FAQ's

    Our Facebook Page




    Contact us

    Great War Books



World War 1 One ww1 wwII greatwar great

1st Eastern General Hospital, Cambridge

The 1st Eastern General Hospital, Cambridge was established by the Royal Army Medical Corps in 1908. It had a close relationship with Addenbrooke's Hospital as medical and nursing staff served in the 1st Eastern in both world wars. During World War I the hospital had its headquarters in Trinity College, with beds in the Leys School and in the grounds of Trinity College, and later in temporary buildings on the cricket grounds of Clare College and King's College to the south of Burrell's Walk, with over 1500 beds by the end of 1915.

Various wards of Addenbrooke's ended up being considered an extension of the First Eastern. Officially the 1st Eastern had 151 Officer beds and 1191 Other Ranks beds, although various wards of Addenbrooke's ended up being considered an extension of the First Eastern, which continued its war duties until 1920.

Looking for help with Family History Research?   

Please see Family History FAQ's

We are unable to provide individual research free of charge, but do offer a paid service at competitive rates, the small profit from these services will be put towards the costs of keeping this website running. For more information please see our Research Services Leaflet

Can you help?

The Wartime Memories Project is run by volunteers and this website is funded by donations from our visitors.

If the information here has been helpful or you have enjoyed reaching the stories please conside making a donation, no matter how small, would be much appreciated, annually we need to raise enough funds to pay for our web hosting or this site will vanish from the web. In these difficult times current donations are falling far short of this target.

If you enjoy this site please consider making a donation.


  • The Wartime Memories Project is the original WW1 and WW2 commemoration website

    This website has been running for 18 years and receives in excess of a million hits per month. The website and our group will continue long after the 2014-18 events are over. We hope that people will continue to support us by submitting material and stories in addition to submitting to the new websites set up for the anniversary.

  • We are looking for volunteers to help with researching the activities of units of the Royal Artillery, Royal Engineers, Territorial Force, Regular Army, Pals Battalions, Kitchener's New Armies, Voluntary Organisations and the Ships of the Royal Navy. We currently have a huge backlog of stories and historical documents which need to be edited or transcribed for display online, if you have a good standard of written English, an interest in the two World Wars and a little time to spare online we would appreciate your help. For more information please see our page on Volunteering.

Wanted: Digital copies of Group photographs, Scrapbooks, Autograph books, photo albums, newspaper clippings, letters, postcards and ephemera relating to the Great War. If you have any unwanted photographs, documents or items from the First or Second World War, please do not destroy them. The Wartime Memories Project will give them a good home and ensure that they are used for educational purposes. Please get in touch for the postal address, do not sent them to our PO Box as packages are not accepted.

We are now on Facebook. Like this page to receive our updates, add a comment or ask a question.

If you have a general question please post it on our Facebook page.

Feb 2018

    Please note we currently have a backlog of submitted material, our volunteers are working through this as quickly as possible and all names, stories and photos will be added to the site. If you have already submitted a story to the site and your UID reference number is higher than 239080 your submission is still in the queue, please do not resubmit without contacting us first.

World War 1 One ww1 wwII greatwar great
Did you know? We also have a section on World War Two. and a Timecapsule to preserve stories from other conflicts for future generations.

List of those who served at the 1st Eastern General Hospital during The Great War

  • Lt Col Joseph Griffiths CMG. First Eastern General Hospital Royal Army Medical Corps Read their Story.
  • Pte. Percival Frederick King First Eastern General Hospital Royal Army Medical Corps Read their Story.

List of those who were treated at the 1st Eastern General Hospital during The Great War

  • Sgt. Thomas Owen Ackers 23rd Btn. Royal Welsh Fusiliers (d.2nd Nov 1918) Read his Story.If you have any names to add to this list, or any recollections or photos of those listed, please get in touch.

Lt Col Joseph Griffiths CMG. First Eastern General Hospital Royal Army Medical Corps

Lt Col Griffiths was a surgeon at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge before the Great War. He commanded the 1st Eastern General Hospital during the Great War.

Hilary Ritchie

Pte. Percival Frederick King First Eastern General Hospital Royal Army Medical Corps

Percy King was from a technically minded family, two of his brothers were car mechanics and engine fitters and worked in the Family Business, King and Harper in Cambridge,(This business was started by their Father, William King, who was also Chief Engineer in a scheme running tractors for the Board of Agriculture during WW1). However Percy did not go into the family business and became a scientific instrument maker and worked for the Cambridge Scientific Instrument Company.

On 18 November 1913 he joined the RAMC (TF) for 4 Years service and he worked at the First Eastern General Hospital (1191 other ranks beds and 151 Officers Beds) in Cambridge the entire time until his on discharge 17 November 1917. Even though it was the height of the war, he was released for essential war work (making instruments) back at his old company, instead of being re-enlisted. His elder brother 2nd Lt Reginald King 48425 was also in the Army (RFC)and served as a pilot, and one of his younger brothers Private Augustus King 202906 was an engine fitter in the Army Service Corps.

Percy was one of the many soldiers who survived the war unscathed and did not see front-line action but did essential work on the home front. He was my uncle and although he married, he never had any children to research or tell his story.

Geoff King

Sgt. Thomas Owen Ackers 23rd Btn. Royal Welsh Fusiliers (d.2nd Nov 1918)

Thomas Owen Ackers served with the 23rd Battalion Royal Welsh Fusiliers during WW1. My grandfather was a patient at 1st Eastern General Hospital between 6/11/17 and 28/12/17 when he was discharged on medical grounds. He had been an asthmatic since childhood but didn't let this stop him being an active and dedicated soldier. After discharge he became a photographer and drill teacher at the local grammar school in Portmadoc. Sadly this was a very short career, he died of Spanish 'flu on Nov 2nd 1918.

Lynda Shaughnessy

Gnr. William Henry Ibbotson 297th Siege Battery Royal Garrison Artillery

Portrait in uniform 1917

William Ibbotson enlisted in Dec 1915 but was not mobilised until March 1917 where he initially served with 399th Siege Battery RGA then was posted to 297th Siege Battery in Aug 1917. It is believed he was posted to Ypres where he provided artillery support for the 3rd Battle of Ypres and Passchendaele. He was a gas casualty in Aug 1918 losing 30% lung capacity and was eventually discharged on the 20th of Nov 18. He died in 1960.

Postcard from France

RGA Forget Me Not

Robin Ibbotson

Can you help us to add to our records?

The names and stories on this website have been submitted by their relatives and friends. If your relations are not listed please add their names so that others can read about them

Did your relative live through the Great War? Do you have any photos, newspaper clippings, postcards or letters from that period? Have you researched the names on your local or war memorial?

If so please let us know.

Do you know the location of a Great War "Roll of Honour?"

We are very keen to track down these often forgotten documents and obtain photographs and transcriptions of the names recorded so that they will be available for all to remember.

Help us to build a database of information on those who served both at home and abroad so that future generations may learn of their sacrifice.

Celebrate your own Family History

Celebrate by honouring members of your family who served in the Great War both in the forces and at home. We love to hear about the soldiers, but also remember the many who served in support roles, nurses, doctors, land army, muntions workers etc.

Please use our Family History resources to find out more about your relatives. Then please send in a short article, with a photo if possible, so that they can be remembered on these pages.

Website and ALL Material Copyright MIM to MMVIII
- All Rights Reserved