In June 28th 1914 Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austro-Hungarian Empire was shot dead in Sarajevo and this signalled, although indirectly, the beginning of World War One. 2014 marks the 100 year centenary of The Great War and as a club setup to honour the fallen The Royal Scots Club simply had to ensure our heroes were remembered on this important occasion.
It was an officer of the Royal Scots Regiment, Colonel The Lord Henry Scott, who suggested the foundation of our Club, to honour the memory of all 11,162 Royal Scots who had been killed during the conflict. Our Club was setup to honour these men and all fallen soldiers of The Great War and has always been a club which welcomes members of all ranks.
The Royal Scots Club is an immortal reminder of the lives lost in The Great War and events such as this centenary should be an opportunity to remember the heroes of the past and present in the armed forces. Here is a closer look at the Royal Scots role throughout the First World War.
Royal Scots Regiment 1914-1919
In 1914 The Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment) was the most senior infantry regiment in the whole of the British Arm. It is one of the few regiments which have served in almost all of the country’s wars and campaigns. When war broke in 1914 there were ten battalions in the Royal Scots Regiment, two of these took turns to serve in overseas environment. The 1st Battalion was on garrison in India and the 2nd Battalion were in the South of England with eight other battalions based in the Lothians, with the 3rd (Special Reserves) based at Glencorse.
By the end of the First World War, heavily due to the work of Sir George MacRae and Lord Kitchener as well as the introduction of conscription the Royal Scots swelled to thirty five battalions, with sixteen of these being frontline units. Tens of thousands of Royal Scots infantrymen and soldiers saw the frontline in France and Belgium and as well as the 11,162 killed servicemen, there were over 40,000 wounded.
The Royal Scots soldiers were awards seventy-one Battle Honours and six Victoria Cross medals. There were also hundreds of individual medals handed out and soldiers from the units were involved across the whole of Europe and African with soldiers in North Russia, Egypt and Macedonia as well as the Western Front.
At the end of World War One there were very few people left unaffected by the conflict. Almost everybody had lost one someone they knew and communities were shattered. It changed the way people lived and it had a considerable impact on Europe and the wider world.
Yes, it may have been 100 years ago but the world would be a very different place without the heroic efforts of all the soldiers involved, as well as those working at home in factories and on the land. Over 9 million soldiers died in total, around the world, and this is a figure which needs to be remembered, alongside the millions of civilians who were also affected.
As the war has fallen beyond living memory it is even more important we work to ensure it is remembered, as are the heroes who gave their lives.
Photo credit: http://www.ww1photos.com/RoyalScots.html