News from The Gazette 100 years ago

First published in News by , Senior Reporter

TODAY marks 100 years since the First World War broke out in 1914.

The war would change the world irreversibly.

On August 4, 1914, it was announced that Britain was at war.

The conflict would kill a staggering 37 million military and civilian casualties.

Among those who died over the following four years were thousands of people from the borough.

This was how The Gazette, which is 136 years old, reported the grave news on August 8, 1914.

“England and Germany are at war at last- participants in a huge European conflagration.

“The danger which loomed when Austria and Servia came into conflict has materialised.

“Of the nations which compose the Triple Alliance and the Triple Entente only Italy has stood aside.

“All English desires for peace have had to give way before the amazing aggression of Germany.

“”King George V. and the Czar have exerted strenuous efforts for peace, but they were unavailing and on Tuesday night Britain officially declared war on Germany.”

The Gazette reported that demonstrations of patriotism were evident across the country.

“Patriotic feeling in England and the Empire was now running high.

“”In Trafalgar-square thousands of people waved flags and made attempts- not always successful- to sing the National Anthem.

“Hundreds of people climbed upon the plinth of Nelsons Column, the King Charles figure was almost entirely hid by swarming figures.

“As soon as the knowledge that war had been declared became known, excited crowds assembled in various parts of the West End, cheering and singing various patriotic songs.”

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