Thursday, 28 July 2016

Weeping Window Poppies come to Caernarfon

Visit the iconic Weeping Window First World War memorial – featuring thousands of ceramic poppies from the famed installation at the Tower of London – during its six-week residency at Caernarfon Castle.  
To book your advance ticket click ‘select a date’ and choose your preferred date and session.Please note you can arrive at the castle anytime during your chosen session. Once you’ve chosen, click ‘register’ and select the number of tickets you require before checking out. Your e-tickets will then be emailed to you.


The Regimental Goats

The Regimental Goats of the RWF Territorial battalions meet at the 158th Brigade Summer Camp held at Porthcawl South Wales. The usual events of a summer camp were held including shooting competition, a variety of inter-company and Inter-unit sports and field manoeuvres. Sadly a planned brigade ceremonial parade in honour of the Colonel of the Regiment, Lieutenant General Sir Charles Dobell had to be cancelled due to bad weather.


Robert Graves born, 1895

He joined up in 1914 and was sent, as an officer, to the 2nd Battalion. His war memoirs, Goodbye to All
That, like much of his war poetry, has never been out of print. He served with Siegfried Sassoon, Dr 
Dunn and Frank Richards. He became a renowned author and poet and died in 1985. His son David was
killed in action serving with the 1st Battalion in Burma in 1943 having been recommended for a VC.

Sunday, 10 July 2016


38th (Welsh) Division attacked Mametz Wood, France, 1916

 This was the first major action fought division, which included the 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th and 17th Battalions. The first attack on the 7th July failed. A second one was made on the 10th. There was heavy fighting throughout the day at very close quarters in the wood. When relieved on the 12th the division had lost 4,000 men, and the Royal Welch Fusiliers well over 1,000, including four out of five commanding officers.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Keys of Corunna

This report first appeared in the Regimental Journal of July 1924. The keys of Corunna would eventually find their way from the Fletcher family into the Regimental Museum and they are one of the Regiments most important artefacts.
It may interest some of  your readers to read something of the keys of Corunna, how I discovered  them and their connection with the Royal Welch Fusiliers.
Some few years ago, while carrying out some repairs at the home of the late Miss Lloyd Fletcher, Gwernhayllod, Overton, Flintshire, I saw in a room a large military chest with the name on it of " Capt- Walker, 23rd Regt.” wonder whether the lady of the house could be any relation to the Fletcher mentioned in the Regimental History ; and on the old butler putting in an appearance, I put the question to him whether the lady-of the house was any relative of the Fletcher who was connected with the history of the Keys of Corunna? On his replying that it was the same family, you can judge how pleased and how delighted I was when asked whether I would like to see the keys. I was then taken into the large Hall, and under a glass case with other trophies lay' the Keys of Corunna. The keys were then taken out of the case and given me to examine ; and how proud I felt to have these relics in my hand,-the keys that had been used at that time (more than 108 years ago) to lock the gates of the town against the oncoming French troops. The bow of one of the keys was badly twisted where the Corporal had put his bayonet through to lever the key over in the lock.
The officer who used these keys, Capt. Thomas Lloyd Fletcher, of the Royal Welch, was the father of Miss Fletcher, at whose house I saw the keys.
What thoughts coursed through one's mind while holding these relics of other days ; how one tried to picture the army on the march from Salamanca to. Corunna (a march of considerably over 200 miles through the mountains and snows of Spain), pursued by a greatly superior force, under the command of person, up to the pass of Astorga, when the command was handed over to Soult, one of his finest marshals.
The trials and troubles through which Sir John Moore's army passed, through many rear-guard actions-hardly any food, badly served with boots and clothing,-and so hotly pursued by the French that the very hay wagons laden with silver dollars to the sum-of £25,000, were pitched over into the valley. The retreat continued, and finally the battle, and the death of the hero in the hour of victory. What a price of victory, the loss of so gallant a soldier, -so beloved by the army under him ! But Moore's name will live as long as the English language is spoken. It has been immortalised in those beautiful lines by the Rev. Chas. Wolfe:-
“We buried him darkly at dead of night,
The sods with our bayonets turning,
By the struggling moonbeam's. misty light,
And the lanterns dimly burning."
The 95th Regiment were the last to march into Corunna, but it fell to the lot of the Royal Welch to be the last Regiment to leave the town to embark on the ships.
Many famous Regiments were mentioned in connection with Corunna, amongst which is our gallant Royal Welch.
The last survivor of Corunna was a Royal Welch Fusilier,-Thomas Palmer,-who. died at the age of 100, and was buried at Weston-Super- Mare in April, 1889,-eighty years after his chief had been laid to rest with his “Martial cloak around him." - STANLEY DAVIES


Start of the battle of the Somme, France
This battle, which lasted until 18 November, was made up of a number of lesser battles and engagements.  On the first day the British Army suffered over 60,000 casualties. During the course of the battle ten Royal Welch battalions fought in one or more of the lesser battles.