- The latest Centenary news, key events, stories and activities of the Great War -

An audio-visual First World War exhibition entitled ‘Next of Kin’ has just gone on tour.  Exhibits  include treasured possessions relating to soldiers lost in the Great War that have been passed down through families.  Prominent among these are photographs, personal equipment, souvenirs such as a captured bayonet, letters and trench art.  Eight locations have been chosen for the exhibition including Dumfries, Inverness, Ayr and Hawick.  In each case soldiers local to the area are featured.

Next of Kin Exhibition - on Tour

July - Check Out the Headline Stories

Next of Kin Exhibition –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1

The British government has this month paid the bill for World War 1.  The final payment was £1.9 billion from an estimated cost (to Britain and her allies) of £2205 billion at today’s prices.  Everyone had expected a short war and so economic preparations had not been made.  The Allies spent double the amount of Germany and her allies and to meet the costs Britain had to borrow heavily from the United States.  It was expected that after the war Germany would contribute to the cost through ‘reparations but Germany was bankrupt and payments stopped in 1932.

Britain Finally Pays of WW1 Debt of £1.9 Billion

British Pounds Sterling –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1

The Imperial War Museum makes a fascinating day out at any time but this year is extra special.  Visitors can examine the largest exhibition of British First World War Art for nearly 100 years with stunning works by soldier/artists such as Paul Nash (above).  Other features that prove popular with those who are interested in the Great War are a walk through trench, a Sopwith Camel and a Mark V tank.

Easter Days Out - A Visit to the IWM

Artist Paul Nash –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1

There is no museum on the British sector of the Western Front where visitors can see a tank.  The best that is on offer is a section of track that is displayed at Peronne, Somme and so a visit to the tank museum at Bovington, Dorset is highly recommended.  As well as a range of tanks that chronicle the development of this weapon, there are opportunities each day to see one in action.  Furthermore a new exhibition entitled ‘Tank Factory’ has just been unveiled and here visitors can learn about the science and technology behind the design and constructions of this weapon that was nearly called ‘the cistern’.

Easter Days Out - Tank Museum at Bovington

Mark 1 Tank Bovington –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1

There was an extraordinary moment on the BBC T.V. series ‘Antiques Roadshow’ on 22nd March 2015, when a descendant of Joseph Clucas was reunited with his ‘death penny’.  Clucas was killed in 1917 and as was the case with all fatalities, his family was given a circular bronze plaque bearing his name.  This ‘death penny’ had passed from the family but when its new owner heard his story on a previous episode of the programme, he was prompted to return it to the Clucas family.  Joseph’s life was spared in 1915 when a bullet was deflected by his whistle.  Sadly the soldier was killed by a shell two years later during the Battle of Passchendaele.

Treasured Momento Located Thanks to TV Show

Joseph Clucas and Whistle –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1

Anzac Day is a highly significant date in Australia and New Zealand.  The 25th April 1915 was the date of the first major action of the Great War involving the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.  This was in Gallipoli where the Anzacs fought alongside British forces against Germany’s ally Turkey.  Today we remember soldiers from these proud nations “who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations”.  It has become traditional for people to share Anzac biscuits on this day and the recipe can be found here

Today - The 100th Anzac Day!

Anzac Day 100th Anniversary –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1
On This Day - 100 Years Ago - 25th April 1915

April - Check Out the Headline Stories

Personal details of 1,821 soldiers have recently been discovered in a cave in northern France.  Most of the graffiti was left by soldiers of the 9th Battalion, Australian Infantry Force who sheltered here prior to fighting on the Somme. The cave is part of a 3 km underground complex beneath the town of Naours and so far details have been found of 731 Australians, 339 British, 55 Americans, a handful of French and Canadians plus 662 others whose nationalities have yet to be traced.  The underground city is now open to the public.

Records of Almost 2000 Soldiers Found in Dramatic Location

Records of Almost 2000 Soldiers –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1

June - Check Out the Headline Stories


There was an unusual sight in the 2015 Brighton marathon. Twenty-seven year old Angad Singh ran the full 26 mile course in the full battle uniform of the 15th Ludhiana Sikh regiment including authentic turban, leg putties and an ammo belt. Angad undertook this test of endurance to honour men such as  Manta Singh, who rescued an English comrade in a wheelbarrow during the  1915 Battle of Neuve-Chapelle. Several Sikhs were decorated for bravery during the war including Mir Dast who, in April 1915, was the first to win a Victoria Cross (during the Great War).

WW1 Sikh Warrior Charges Through Brighton

WW1 Sikh Warrior –Western Front Witness –Latest WW1 News –WW1 Stories -Centenary WW1