New Zealand recognised for part in Somme

A valuable line of wethers at Awarima, part of the old Five Rivers Estate in Southland. — Otago...
A valuable line of wethers at Awarima, part of the old Five Rivers Estate in Southland. — Otago Witness, 11.10.1916.
The message in which the Commander-in-chief of the British forces in France pays a tribute of admiration of the services rendered by the New Zealand division in the protracted battle of the Somme will be received with feelings of intense pride by the public.

The dreadful casualty lists which it has been our sorrowful duty to publish during the past fortnight and which are supplemented by another this morning have caused us to realise more fully than at any previous stage of the war the extent of the sacrifice that is necessary in order to liberate the world from the perils of Prussian militarism. 

Even the o’erfraught hearts, upon whose sacred grief it seems profane to intrude, the hearts sadly aching under the sense of immeasurable personal loss, may, we hope, gather some consolation from the knowledge that those they mourn died glorious deaths.

"The New Zealand Division," says Sir Douglas Haig, "has fought with the greatest gallantry in the Somme battle for twenty-three consecutive days, carrying out with complete success every task which it has been set and always doing even more than was asked of it."

It is impossible to read without a thrill of emotion this eulogy of the New Zealand troops from the highest official source.

It conveys to us some faint conception of the severity of the ordeal through which our own men — men who were not bred to war-like pursuits, men who probably hated the very idea of war and who engaged in the war only because they heard and acknowledged the call of duty — have had to pass and in which so very many of them have fallen.

It would be unthinkable that the heroic efforts and the terrible sacrifice of those noble lives should be in vain.

"Never again!" Mr Lloyd George has said, and this declaration must be echoed and re-echoed throughout the Empire.

This war must be brought to such a conclusion that no other such war shall be possible.

The opening day at the Roslyn bowling green saw a fine crowd  of about 150 people, including a large number of ladies, assemble for the function.

The weather was perfect, the wind hardly affecting the green, which is now well protected by a fine high hedge.

The President (Mr J. Scott) thanked the ladies for their attendance, and also the visiting bowlers, of whom there were a fair number.

He referred to the fine condition of the green, and said that any bowlers who wanted a good game on a really good green only needed to go to Roslyn.

He made some remarks on old members, and mentioned that they still had two of the original members with them who were on the Roslyn green 33 years ago — Messrs David Scott and William Wilson.— (Loud applause.)

Mr Scott emphasised the fact that the club was taking a keen interest in returned soldiers.

They had gone from New Zealand and had done their bit; many would come back shattered or broken up in health, and it behoved those who had remained at home to do their bit.

He asked the bowlers to note that the green was being thrown open free to returned soldiers, with free bowls and free slippers.

He trusted that the men would accept the offer and that it would do something to bring them back to health and vigour.

Mr Scott also stated that during the year 12 more members of the club had joined the forces.

The first bowl was rolled up by Mrs Scott in a manner which, although a toucher did not result, proved her to be no novice at the game.

The match, President v. Vice-president, was afterwards played.

A band of ladies attended to the provision of afternoon tea, and the proceedings were enlivened by music. — ODT, 9.10.1916.



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