Thursday morning and I board
the Preston train, a dumpy DMU,
but less of a cattle-truck today.
Over the bridge or beneath
lines to Platform 5 to wait:
Branson's Scarlet Pendolino
will glide in soon bound
for Birmingham - wonder
who I shall meet and share
travelling moments with ?
At the caverns of New Street
I must wend to Moor Street
and a Chilterns train trundling
me south for Warwick's 1,100th.
birthday weekend and 100 years
since trains of Lancashire PALS
cattle-trucked themselves to
Flanders fields never to return.
(c) C J Heyworth June 2014
Warwick Words is the annual literary festival held in two parts, early June and early October, each year in the city of Warwick.
2014 is the 1,100th year that Warwick has been recognised as an English city.
2014 is also the anniversary of the commencement of what my grandmother always referred to as "The Great War".
On Preston station there is a splendid plaque which records the embarkation of thousands of NW soldiers to fight in France and the Low Counries often characterised as Flanders Fields where Remembrance Day poppies grew after the land had been pulverised by incessant shelling.
Lord Kitchener amongst others decided that the most attractive way to recruit soldiers by the thousand was to establish PALS regiments so that men would be fighting alongside their mates; hence PALS regiments.
— The End —