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The Great War and West Yorkshire

Index - 1914 - 1915 - 1916 - 1917 - 1918 - Links - Local Soldiers - Men of Worth Project - Keighley History

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The Great War and West Yorkshire

This document has been compiled to act as a reference point for teachers in and around West Yorkshire when teaching the Great War. It currently covers the involvement of the 16th/18th Battalion, West Yorkshire Regimanet (Bradford pals), the Leeds Pals and the 2/5th West Yorkshire Regiment (Reserves). Additionally there are references to events on the Home Front and links to pther people who had local links. Information relating to other West Yorkshire Battalions will be added at a later date.

Using this reference guide.

The new National Curriculum for KS3 requires the teaching of Local History. This document is designed to ease the use of local sources and tales of local men and women in the context of the Great War.

Using local sources to teach the Great War:

Use local archives, diaries of soldiers, books about local Regiments and newspaper reports from the area to provide source materials about a range of aspects of the war. In the case of the Great War in West Yorkshire, this can be done quite easily in relation to:

  1. The outbreak of war and the varied responses to this. Newspaper reports and accounts of soldiers who joined up shortly after the outbreak of war. Also consider the business community’s response to the war, it is varied and interesting. For example, the funding of Pals battalions in Leeds and Bradford; or for contrast, the treatment of German merchants in the Woollen trade.
  2. Recruitment methods. There are interviews available online and in books that show a range of reasons why people joined up. There are interesting accounts of the way in which footballers and cricketers who signed up were used to encourage further recruitment.
  3. Changing Nature of Warfare. Compare and contrast the accounts of servicemen who participated in the Somme Offensive, the Battle of Cambrai and the Battle of the Marne. There are some excellent examples of both continuity and change in the way that attacks were planned and accounts also show how trench systems were adapted over the course of the war.
  4. Home Front. The Low Moor explosion is an example of how dangerous life on the Home Front could be. Similarly there is the Zeppelin Raid on York and Leeds to consider; the military use of local hospitals; accounts of local chambers of commerce as well as sources relating to rationing, conscription and morale etc.

 

This guide has been compiled using a combination of Reference Books, Journals and websites. Where available online, a link to further details or supporting evidence has been provided. A bibliography is included in the website which contains a number of outstanding books about the areas involvement in the Great War. There are also pages containing links to information about local combatants and / or local personalities of the time.


 

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gcsehistory.org.uk - medicinethroughtime.co.uk - crimeandpunishmentthroughtime.co.uk - Blog

Wallarms.com Militaria - a range of interesting pieces of militaria is available via tihs site