The War Diary of Mervyn Crawshay

27 Oct 1914

A Squadron is in supporting trenches. I go round before dawn, find Spurrier., see Blackburn and just get back before the shooting begins, there is little of it.

In dug outs in rain part of time, relieved by Connaughts in evening. The usual furious muddle about it.

28 Oct 1914

A very comfortable night get my boots off, in the house where I found the signalling  going on, and after breakfast we actually go back and see our long lost horses, groom, clean and ride them. Gallop round a field enclosed by trees, all the time keeping a sharp lookout for aeroplanes, such is our present life.

Change my Squadron to a little farm near by as this place is over-crowded and a sea of mud.

Then up to our old pitch by windmill, see various aeroplanes being shot at.

Not very encouraging news today, there is very hard fighting on the left and we are hanging on, get quietly back into Messines and take over the outer line, formerly held by C squadron, from Connaughts.

A very cold night, frost.

I am on left of line with 11 troop.

Turned out twice by firing to meet the attack only a few shots however.

Our orders remain the same, to hang on to the last here, so its simple

29 Oct 1914

A big battle going on on our left. At first only cannon can be heard, but by 12 can hear musketry and machine guns. It seems to be coming this way. Lie in the cold trench, read papers, think of other times, one might almost be buried and done with, hour after hour, hear we may not be relieved even tonight.

The day is wintry, and one’s feet wet.

War from the cavalry solders point of view as he expected and as it is, are two quite different things.

Am relieved by Wild’s Rifles in evening after a lot of palaver; Pathans and Sikhs.

The getting in and out of trenches was rather a comedy in rain and dark, it might have been otherwise Currans cough for instance.

The Afrides are going German hunting in the wood.

I get a comfortable billet and sleep and a letter from Vide and good news re Haigh having

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