First world war diaries, by TF Littler
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First world war

T. F. Littler's First World War Diaries, his collection of WWI cartoon and photographic postcards, and some family photographs from the French battlefields.

Thomas Fredrick (Fred) Littler joined the Cheshire Regiment shortly after his 17th birthday in 1914. He trained in Aberystwyth, Cambridge, Northampton and Norwich, before beginning work at Siddley Deasy in Coventry. He signed for Foreign Service on his 18th birthday, and, after further training, left England for Rouen in March 1916.

Littler's war diary describes his experience of battle in the 1st world war in Northern France for 11 months from April 1916, where he sustained a leg injury, which eventually led to his return to England to convalesce. In England he met his future wife and joined the Royal Engineers with whom he returned to France in April 1918 until the end of the war. He reports many casualties around him on the front line and in support positions, and himself survived Spanish Flu, a major killer, towards the end of the first world war.

The maps below are extracts from Bacon's Large-Scale Map of the British Battle Front on which Fred Littler marked his path through France, Belgium and Germany. His pencil lines marked A, B, C, D & E are described as follows:

A - Our attack on the 1st of July 1916
B - Our attack in Sept & Oct 1916
Map showing A & B

map of routes A and B
C - R.E. Workshops from Nov 1916 to March 1917
D - Our push of the 41st Div 1918
E - The route back from Germany.
Map showing C, D and part of E
map of routes C, D & E
Site design and original content © Chris Littler

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