Black & White postcard showing the entrance building to the South African Hospital

Richmond WW1 Diary 6 January 1917

The South African Military Hospital Visitors enjoying the tranquillity of Richmond Park are seldom aware that there was once a large military hospital within the park, not far from Star and Garter Gate. Today the only traces of the South African Military Hospital are some of its foundations, sometimes visible in the winter months. South…

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Richmond WW1 Diary 15 September 1916

First use of tanks at the Somme The war influenced the development of a range of new military technologies. This included the use of poison gas as a weapon for the first time, the use of aeroplanes in battle for the first time, and the first use of tanks. Armoured motorcars were conceived as the…

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Richmond WW1 Diary 8 January 1916

Gas Attack The Richmond Herald, 8 January 1916, ran a story titled ‘The Kaiser’s tears’, a Richmond man’s account of surviving a gas attack. He wrote:  “At one point our trench was blown up…I stepped into the darkness and fell off, rifle and all. My word I was in a pickle. Some saucy German had…

Cecil's WWI compass

WW1 compass from the Museum of Richmond exhibition

Another of the items featured in the Museum of Richmond exhibition, as well as in our schools learning resources, is the compass that belonged to Cecil Cloake. After the end of  the First World War, Cecil became a GP in Wimbledon and his son John wrote several history books about the Richmond area. The small…