This week I managed to purchase a wonderful image of the 1st / 2nd East Lancashire Field Ambulance which was taken at Giza, Egypt in October 1914. Assistance to identify the unit shown in the image was generously given by Andrew Mackay, co-Author of Burnley & the Royal Edward Disaster – ‘The Story of Callam’s Own’.
The 1/1st, 2/1st and 3/1st East Lancashire Field Ambulances which in total consisted of 30 officers and 665 men left with the 42nd Division in September 1914 for Egypt and the defence of the Suez Canal. Disembarkation began at Alexandria on 25 September, and with the exception of the Manchester Brigade concentrated around Cairo, where acclimatisation and further training commenced.
The 1st / 2nd East Lancashire Field Ambulance was the first of three Field Ambulance units belonging to the 42nd Division to be mobilised for action abroad. The East Lancashire Field Ambulance units were staffed by some of the most highly qualified medical men from Manchester and the District. When the call for Imperial service came they, and their men, responded swiftly and were to endure great hardships during the course of their Gallipoli service.
Its a superb image and one Ill be taking with me to the Cardiff ‘Views of an Antique Land’ conference for scanning on the 20th May.
For further details on the Cardiff project and upcoming conference please see the links listed below.
References & Links:
‘The Lancashire Territorials in Gallipoli – An epic of Heroism’ George Bigwood
‘Burnley & The Royal Edward Disaster – The Story of Callams Own’ edited by Denis Otter & Andrew Mackay
The Official Facebook page for the Cardiff University HLF funded project: https://www.facebook.com/ww1imagesegypt/