Details of talks available to Western Front Association branches

Payne, Chris

Location: Kendal, Cumbria Home phone: 01539 561980 Mobile phone: 07712 671306 Email: Website:

Equipment needed: Screen and extension lead. I will bring my own laptop, data-projector and speakers (suitable for room sizes accommodating audiences of up to 40-50).

Fees/expenses: Travel at cost (rail fare or petrol) and overnight accommodation if needed.

Talk 1: "Conscripts' Experiences of Training and War 1916-1918" Including the background and procedures of conscription; conscript training; experiences of war on the Western Front during late 1917 until the armistice in 1918, during which the 'all arms' warfare strategies developed by the Allied armies ultimately secured a victory.(Based on letters home from a conscript who served with 62nd Division)

Talk 2: "Charlie's War; Tales of a Derbyite Conscript: Part 1, 1916-1917" Covering my grandfather's experiences of army training with the Yorkshire Regiment in Clacton and West Hartlepool and with the 2/5th Battalion Duke of Wellington's (62nd Division) on the Western Front in France, (including the Battle of Cambrai).

Talk 3: "Charlie's War; Tales of a Derbyite Conscript: Part 2, 1918-1919 Based on my grandfather's experiences with the 5th Battalion, Duke of Wellington's (62nd Division). Includes the German Spring Offensive (Defence of Bucquoy), the Second Battle of the Marne (Battle of Tardenois), 'The Last Hundred days' (including the crossings of the St Quentin Canal and the River Selle), and participation in the Army of Occupation in the Rhineland.

Talk 4: "The Little Digger: William Morris Hughes and the Great War" Background to the career of Billy Hughes; his emigration from the UK and early years in Australia; Prime Ministerial career 1915-1923 including his attitudes to German internment and industry, the White Australia Policy, his wartime visits to the UK in 1916 and 1918, the Australian Conscription plebiscites and his participation (as the enfant terrible) in the Versailles Peace Treaty negotiations in 1919.

Notes: My talks have been timed to run for 55-60 minutes. Further background information is available at my website: