How the Reporter broke news of war

The August 8, 1914 edition of the Reporter detailed the recall of the Territorial Army, or ‘Terriers’ to Dewsbury as England declared war on Germany.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 26th January 2014, 10:22 am
BREAKING NEWS How the Reporter told readers about the outbreak of World War I.
BREAKING NEWS How the Reporter told readers about the outbreak of World War I.

The soldiers were given mobilisation instructions, including a kit bag checklist of food and spare clothes.

It said: “Much excitement prevailed in Dewsbury on Tuesday when it became known that the Territorials had returned during the small hours of the morning and they had been ordered to parade at the Drill Shed at 11 in the forenoon.”

Captain PT Chadwick, commanding officer of the Dewsbury Detachment of the 4th Battalion KOYLI, directed operations as the men prepared to leave the following day. The Mayor of Dewsbury, Alderman J McCann, told them: “Captain Chadwick, officers and men, as Mayor 
of Dewsbury, and on behalf 
of the inhabitants of Dewsbury, I’m here to wish you 
god speed on the journey you are about to take,

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“Dewsbury is extremely proud of you and the work you have done. We know that you will conduct yourselves in the best possible manner and be a credit to Dewsbury.”

The paper told how hundreds gathered outside Dewsbury Town Hall to read Royal Proclamations about the war, which were “eagerly scanned... until darkness closed in.”

And it reported on members of the Dewsbury Division of St John’s Ambulance Brigade who had been mobilised.

Territorials from Eastthorpe and Mirfield were cheered on their way as they set off for Grimbsy, where the Reporter said they 
were to take up duties in Grimsby connected to home defence work.

The members of the Mirfield Detachments of the 5th West Riding, Duke of Wellington’s Regiment, were said to be in the “pink of condition” when they arrived at Mirfield Railway Station.

The Rev WP Rhodes, of Trinity Manse, Mirfield, wrote: “I was struck with the nervous eagerness of most of the youths and men; they quite realise how serious is this call to their country, but they have responded with perfect readiness and willingness.”

l Turn to the Nostalgia feature on page 34 for more on the town’s war effort.