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Family Notices





THE WELSH TROOPS f LORD FRENCH'S GREAT TRIBUTE I At the special celebration meeting held I under the auspices of the Swansea Mabi- I nogioft Society on Wednesday night at Trinity Schoolroom, a fitting tribute was paid to those brave men who so nooly held back the German hordes on that memorable day at Ypres in October, 1914. Some of that indomitable little band were present as members of the Swansea jlit II Badge League, but, as the speaker ob- served with mingle-d teclin^ riie-re a: e many who sleep under the soil of Flanders. The Bit Badge men, under the semor officer, Mr. G: Henry Jones, were received by a guard of honour composed of Boy Scouts. In charge of the parade were Comrades Dempster and Davies (trea- surer). The Mayor-elect (Alderman Ben Jones) presided, and the proceedings, very fittingly opened with a salute to the Flag and the singing of the Xabanal Anthem. Those j-)r'?:iit included .-(l 'oun. J. Lew is and Mr. Hicks Morgan. B.A. (respectively obairman and secretary of the swall,6(" Cymrodorion Society), Mr. D..1. Higgs, Dr. and Mi?. Trevor Evam, Dr. HoweH", Mr. J,. G. Roberts, M.A., H.M.I.; Mr. John William?, Brynmill; Principal Trevor Owen, Mr. J. W. Jones, J.P., Alderman John Jordan, and Mr Morbus Samuel (president and rice-chairman of the Swan- sea Mabincgion S-ooiety!, Her. D. M. Davies (Congregational Book-room!, Councillor Evan Jones, Mr. W. L, Ihv:12- Mr. Morgan Jenkins. Mr. Dillwyn Jones J (treasurer Mabinogiou Society), and others. Mr. D. Rhys Phillips, the Welsh Librarian, was iinal-to to owing to indisposition. From Field Marshal Lord French, who guided the destinies of the little. Army in those critical days, a letter wa.s read by Mr. Talnant Llewelyn (the secretary), which, while it provoked tremendous en- thusiasm in the narrower limits of the meeting itself, will stir chords of national pride. The whole letter reads:— G.H.Q., Home Forces, Horse Guards, S.W., 27th October, 1917. Dear Sir,-It gives me the greatest pleasure to hear that your society is to commemorate the first battle of Ypres, a-ld, more particularly, the splendid work done by the Welsh troops. The gallantry and tenacity of the men in the trenches in that memorable battle in face of vastly superior numbers barred the way to the Channel ports, and thereby saved England and the Em- pire from a great disaster.—Yours truly, FRENCH. To Talnant Llewelyn, Esq., Sir Alfred Moml, Bart., M.P., wrote: I am very glad to hear that your im- portant society is about to celebrate the anniversary of the heroic and unforget- table actions of the Welsh regiments on j the 3!st October, I!>1 i. It is well for ti-s to recall at this stage of the war the heroic selt-sacritico of that small band or unequalled troops who stood unflinch- ingly against overwhelming numbers and incredible odds between us and the I disaster threatened by the German Army. These deeds were the foundation upon which our present gallant hoste are marching to victory with great deter- mination and courage, as was shown by their predecessors in the defence of the Empire at its most critical moment. The day of October 31st, 1914, and the memory of the men of the Welsh regi- ments who fought and died on that heroic occasion will ever be gratefully re- j membered throughout the length and breadth of the British Empire." The chairman paid a high tribute to the heroic deeds ot the Welsh throughout the v ar, and especially in those memorable days of October three years ago. Britain was to-day htiug for liberty, not for territory. (Applause). We were lighting for thesmall nations. Renewed applause). Mr. J. D. Williams emphasised at the outset that t-hcee days at the end of October were the most critical in the history of the Empire, because the very existence of that Empire was at stake. It was a time when, accor- ding to report, the breach blocks had actually been taken from the heavy guns before Ypres in order to disable them. It was to give thanks for their deliverance that they were gathered together upon the anniversary of so momentous a t'ay. Welshmen to-day felt sreater pride and joy in Wales because they remembered that their fellow-country- men had much to do in averting the deadly peril with which we were faced upon that etormy Saturday afternoon in the Low Country. It was on the 21st October that the great battle of Ypres opened, and it was fought with one ob- jective only-the Channel ports. OTI the 31st the right llank of the 7th Division was left open; there was nothing but a line of weary and partially broken infantry to protect the tiank from being entirely pierced. But when things looked darkest, there was a dramatic change. A messenger brought the startling news \) regiments, the Worcesters and the Welsh, had saved the fortunes of the day. The I South Wales Borderers had been told to hold to their post to the last. They had done so. (Loud applause.) Worcesters and Welsh then shared in the glory of this great day. (Cheers.) And they paid the price of glory. Out of 600 men, the Worcesters lost 187. When the Borderers mustered, there were only 225 survivors. Not far away, the 2nd Welsh had suffered terribly. The old contemptibles" who fell for us lie in nameless graves. But we would never forget them. (Loud ap- plause). Neither would we forget those who came after, those who inherited their cloak of glory. They slept side by side, almost shoulder to shoulder, as becomes mighty warriors, in thoee cemeteries in France which would-- be for evermore the most precious soil of our land. e were cele- brating that night a-great day in the his- tory, not only of Wales, but of the Empire. We lifted our hearts in thanksgiving for so mighty a deliverance. But the effectual thanksgiving was for us all to ask ourselves whether we were so ordering our lives in these grim times that the wonderful souls who died for us did not die in vain. Our best celebration was a determination to make a happier Wales for our men, to sec that life shall be brighter, and easier, for them than it j was before. (Cheers.) Mr. J. W, Jones, J.P., proposed, an/1 Aid. John Jordan seconded, a vote of thanks to the speaker and the artistes. The miscellaneous items included the reading of a Welsh poem on Ypres by the Rev. D. M. Davies, a very appropriate selection from Shakespeare kv Mr. W. H. Jones, and two delightfully rendered topical solos by Miss Beatrice Anthony. Mr. Ivor Ow-on, who accompanied throughout, also gave a selection of Welsh airs. A calk^|i^i in aid of the Bit-Badge League rapped 'a god amount.

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