The Wartime Memories Project - The Great War

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The 1st Northern General Hospital, Newcastle

The 1st (or Northumbrian) Northern General Hospital appears in the Army List in July 1909 as part of 50 Northumberland Division. When war broke out in August 1914, the First Northern General Hospital was mobilised with the rest of the Territorial General Hospitals. The original provision was for 540 beds, but by 1917 this had risen to 2166 and the unit took over Armstrong College, Durham University, the Newcastle Workhouse Infirmary (now Newcastle General Hospital) and a private house to serve as hospital accommodation.

Territorial Army General Hospitals date from the formation of the Territorial Force in 1908. Each hospital was allocated a small complement of Officers with normal Territorial obligations and a larger complement made up of Officers who undertook to make themselves available for hospital duty on mobilisation.

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  • 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 We currently have a huge backlog of stories and historical documents which need to be edited or transcribed for display online, if you have a good standard of written English, an interest in the two World Wars and a little time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.

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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.

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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 Northern General Hospital, Newcastle during The Great War

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

  • Pte. James Arthur Agnew 56th Battalion 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.

Pte. James Arthur Agnew 56th Battalion

Sixteen year old Australian soldier, 3006 Private James Arthur Agnew, was wounded in action near Wimeraux, France 20 July 1916. On 22 July 1916 he was evacuated on Hospital Ship Jan Breydel through Boulogne and taken to England. He was admitted to 1st Northern General Hospital, Newcasle on 23 July 1916 for treatment and recovery. He later returned to his unit in France.

H. Bateup

Pte George William Barnes 4th Hussars

George William Barnes served in 8th Hussars, 1907-1914. Recalled from the Reserve in 1914, he enlisted in 4th Hussars and served with the BEF in France/Flanders. He was wounded at Wulverghem in November 1914 and treated in "Armstrong College Hospital" (1st Northern General Hospital), Newcastle upon Tyne. There is no information on the time spent in hospital, but he transferred to 14th Hussars in 1915 and was posted to Mesopotamia in 1916, where he served for the rest of the war. He was already demobilised when he was subject to a medical examination in Baghdad in 1919. He may have wished to remain in the service, like his brother, but was "no longer fit for service", due to a "disability attributable to and aggravated by service in the present war". The disability was not caused by his injury at Wulverghem in 1914, but "the improper setting of a broken foot", the result of his horse falling on him during exercises at the Curragh Camp, Ireland, in February 1915, when he was treated at the Curragh Military Hospital. There is still some confusion about his early service - he did enlist in 8th Hussars in April 1907 (aged 15 years), but, according to records found so far, he was discharged one month later, having lied about his age (given as 19 years). He obviously re-enlisted, as his later medical record states that he was posted for duty in July 1907 at Belfast. His older brother, Arthur John Barnes, served in the 4th Hussars 1907-1914 and in 8th Hussars, 1914-1928. His cousin, Herbert Edward Kerley Barnes, served in 8th and 4th Hussars from 1909. He died, while still in service, in February 1919 - the cause of death is unknown and he was buried at home, but his death is listed on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website.

P Talbot (nee Barnes)

Pte. Cecil Nicholas 7th Btn.

I have been doing some research into men from the Korumburra area, Victoria, Australia, and in the course of that research have been in discussion with a lady whose grandfather, Cecil Nicholas, spent time in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, recuperating from wounds received in France. This lady has a photo of a building in which her grandfather spent time. The note on the photo, only recently deciphered, we think is 'Prudhoe, Newcastle-upon-Tyne'. This recent discovery, that of knowing that this man spent time at Newcastle-upon-Tyne is timely as the lady I have been in discussion with is to travel to England in April/May this year. We've found on his papers a note that confirms that he was at the Northern Hospital at Newcastle-upon-Tyne. She would love to be able to discover more of where her grandfather spent time recuperating, so if you are able please to help us with anything that would help us to locate the building that would be wonderful. It might be that you would like a copy of the photo which we can easily provide, and my friend would, I know, be happy to tell you more of her grandfather.

Janet Wilson

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.

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