May 16 – Roll of Honour, and Battle of Festubert

In 1915 at Festubert 265 Inniskillings died in a hard fought battle. Rolls of Honour today for 2nd Btn. Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, and of men from Londonderry. In 1917 Campbell Kennedy from Lisburn was in Sulva Bay. A letter home and his parent’s newspaper notice are simple and moving insights of the times. Tomorrow – Portrush’s Dambuster. Read More

MAY 15 – ROLL OF HONOUR

This period in both world wars is marked by major battles in which the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers took part – In 1915 The Battle of Festubert and in 1944 the Battles around Cassino. Veterans today include two well known naval surgeons Kirk Forsythe and Edwin Torrie and  Hugh White a PoW who survived a 6-month death march from Dunkirk into Poland. Read More

May 14 – Roll of Honour, U-boat surrender

On this day in 1945 the surrender of German U-boats began on the Foyle. In 1915 William Stanfield, a Marine from Belfast, died in Gibraltar on the hospital ship bringing him home from Egypt. He rests in North Front Cemetery. Entries for three RUR Riflemen reflect the fought withdrawal to Dunkirk in 1940. Read More

May 13 – Roll of Honour

The sinking of HMS Goliath off Cape Helles in 1915 dominates today’s Roll. 570 of the 750 men were lost including 23 from NI. Boy First Class Alfred Henry Gadd and Stoker First Class Hector Hiles, had Newtownards links. In 1944 Christopher Saunderson from Ballymena died while taking part in a mission to attack railway marshalling yards at Hasselt, Belgium with RAF 76 Squadron. Read More

May 12 – Roll of Honour

Today is the anniversary of the beginning of the final successful attack on Monte Cassino in 1944 which opens the way for the liberation of Italy in WW2. John Gilmore from Killyleagh was lost in HMS Grove. He had been torpedoed twice and taken part in the Dunkirk evacuation. His younger brother was also in the RN. Local newspapers in 1915 report on major army events in Belfast and a march from Finner Camp via Strabane to Londonderry. Read More

May 11 – Roll of Honour

Remembered today are 12 including an army medical consultant who fled Vienna and qualified at QUB. Also RNR Commander William Brown Piggot from Londonderry who had an excellent record as a U-boat hunter. Photo – Tyne Cot. Read More

May 10 – Roll of Honour

A 19-year-old Irish Fusilier from Lisburn was wounded twice by Christmas 1914. He died this day in 1915 at Hooge. Today is the anniversary of five RAF aircrew from NI whose remains rest in Dunboe, Oxfordshire, France, and Egypt. Gen. Dwight D Eisenhower comments on N Ireland’s role – “From here we started the long, hard march to Allied victory” Read More