Elham HistorIcal SOCIETyA History Research Group for Elham

The Great War

The Great War had a profound impact upon British society, many small villages such as Elham recruited large numbers of men who voluntered to "Do Their Bit" for King and Country. Women too enlisted or carried out war work in many forms. The Elham Parish magazine, "The Lantern" lists the details of those volunteers, together with the activities undertaken by parishioners in support of those on active service.

In times of peace the village square was a hive of activity, with men and horses working the fields.

Workmen in the square at Elham

In times of war the peaceful farming activity changed to men and horses playing a very different role.

The Elham Valley Railway was very busy during the Great War. Gordon Young's father, Bill Young remembered the many wagon loads of feed for the horses in the battlefields of France and Belgium being transported by rail through the Elham Valley.

The Hadaway family lived in the end cottage of what is now The Abbot's Fireside Hotel and Restaurant. They are shown here around 1900. Unfortunately young Percy was killed and is buried in Elham Churchyard.

This picture shows the men of Elham Parish posing outside The Rose & Crown, you can now only wonder how the Great War impacted on their once joyful lives.