Luton WW1 diary: October 22nd, 1914

Stories from The Luton News, October 22nd, 1914.

"The General Officer commanding wishes that in recognition of the excellent work performed towards this Division by the Bute Hospital, Luton, an institution supported entirely by voluntary contributions, a subscription from 1d upwards by men should be raised for its benefit throughout the Division."

Such is the splendid suggestion which has gone forth to the various Territorial units in the district and it is a very practical recognition of the endeavours of the Bute Hospital Committee to place all available accommodation at the Hospital at the disposal of the military. It has to be borne in mind that the military are paying an agreed fee for all cases received into the Hospital, and this suggested contribution to the funds by the men themselves must be accepted as proof that throughout the various units the men appreciate what the Hospital has been to the sick ones.

  • Last week we announced that a residence in Brook Street had been taken by the authorities for a hospital for the sick among the Territorials in Luton, but this week we learn the plans have been altered. The house was not considered suitable, and the R.A.M.C. officers who have been billeted at Wardown Mansion came to the conclusion that the ground floor of that beautiful house was the best place which it would be possible to obtain for use as a hospital. There would be serious question of upkeep, however, unless the War Office came to the rescue, and for the present we cannot conceive of its being put to better use than for the comfort and upbuilding of those Territorials who unfortunately fall sick and require medical treatment. The weather has been too cold for them to be nursed in bell tents in the grounds of Wardown.

  • Musketry practice has commenced on the 120 targets erected at the foot of Warden Hill and Galley Hill by the military authorities, and is likely to be continued pretty briskly during the next few weeks. The public are warned that they are under a penalty of £5 if they trespass within the zone of danger. When firing is taking place it will be indicated by a large red flag flying at the top of each of the two hills. Members of the South Beds Golf Club will be able to use the whole of the links on Saturday afternoons and Sundays. On other days nine holes at the Luton end may be used.

  • On Thursday, 45 men of the Luton company which was formed as a reserve of the original Luton company of the East Anglian Divisional Royal Engineers left the home service unit here and joined the foreign service unit at Bury St Edmunds.

  • On Saturday morning on their training ground at Winsdon Hill, the Luton Reserve Company, who have already made themselves efficient, were inspected by Lieut-Col Wells commanding the East Anglian Royal Engineers.

  • The Vauxhall Motors Works have kindly granted the East Anglian Royal Engineers the use of their rifle range.

  • Alien enemies in this country and between certain ages are being taken into custody by the police, and a number are now detained at the Luton Police Station. It is understood that later they will be sent to a concentration camp.

  • At Farley Farm on Monday, Messrs J. C. Cumberland and Sons, acting on behalf of the War Office, sold over 180 horses which had been withdrawn from those impressed for the use of the Army. The horses sold very readily.

  • Luton FC's players are on reduced wages. Luton, in common with all other clubs, have felt the difficulty of the present abnormal times. The League has not agreed scheme for all its clubs to work upon. It is left to each club to make its own arrangements with the players.

  • The recent Review at Luton Hoo raised a total of £212 0s 4d, less £10 14s 3d in expenses, for the Prince of Wales' National Relief Fund.

  • Rumour has it that there is to be no customary Mayoral banquet in Luton this year. The feeling of the Council is that on account of the war and all the suffering which it has brought, anything in the nature of festivities would be out of place.

  • Plans for the rebuilding Messrs Boots' shop premises in George Street have been passed by the Town Council.

  • Messrs F. C. Hance, of 4 Highbury Road and C. Evans, of 29 Spencer Road, have been appointed members of Luton Fire Brigade.

  • The principal topic of discussion on Tuesday among straw trade people was the letter issued that morning calling the creditors of Messrs S. C. Wright and Co to a meeting to be held tomorrow afternoon. The firm have carried on a big business and the intimation that they were in difficulties was conveyed in the letter from Messrs Godfrey, Laws and Co, accountants, of 4 Chapel Street.

  • On Tuesday, the Lincolnshire Heavy Battery removed from White Hill Farm, Stopsley, to a camp at Leagrave.

  • Dr H. W. Barnes, Assistant Medical Officer of Heath, Lincoln, was the candidate unanimously appointed Luton's acting medical officer of health on a salary of £500 per annum. Medical Officer of Health Major William Archibald was on active service with the Eastern Mounted Brigade Field Ambulance.

  • The large extensions which are being made to the Luton Electricity works are expected to be completed in time for the new machinery to be started by the end of November or first week in December. There is to be a formal opening ceremony, and Mr Marconi has promised to come to Luton to perform the opening.

  • The names of those who have enlisted at the Park Street Recruiting Office, Luton, for service in the Regular Army or Special Reserve since we obtained the list published last week are: George Bateman, C. Burgess, H. Bowles, J. Childs, H. Coomber, A. G. Dawes, H. King, H. Odell, T. F. Piggott, E.J. Rook, F. T. Sharp,G. T. Smith, A. Suckling, A. Ward, G. W. Webb, W. Wheeler.

  • Yesterday, on the application of Mr H. W. Lathom, the magistrates granted an interim licence to Mr Arthur Bennett Attwood for the re-opening of the Picturedrome, Park Street. The interim licence was wanted so that the cinema might re-open at once.

  • An enjoyable concert was given last evening at the Church Army tent for Territorials in Francis Street. There was a large attendance.

  • The Rev A. Stanley Bishop, one of the ministers of the Chapel Street Circuit, has been appointed Wesleyan Chaplain to the Territorial Division now stationed in this district.

  • Thirteen Belgian refugees arrived at Luton on Tuesday and are being accommodated in King Street in a house which is the property of the King Street Congregational Church. This house has been put into a habitable state and suitably furnished for their accommodation by members of the church and congregation who will also subscribe the cost of their maintenance for a period of six months, so that the refugees will be provided with a comfortable retreat in Luton and in a manner which, thanks to the charitable enterprise of the King Street people, will involve no charge on any relief fund whatever.



Mr John Silvester, A.B., R. N. R., of 35 St Saviour's Crescent, Luton, is among men reported missing from HMS Hawke, sunk by a German submarine in the North Sea last week. Mr Silvester was a reservist who was called up at the outbreak of war.

Major E. I. de S. Thorpe, Lieut V. C. Downes and Lieut C. C. Stafford, of the Beds Regt, were reported in Tuesday's casualty lists to have been wounded on or before October 15th.