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LNER Route: Leicester to Marylebone

Rugby Central Station: gcrcs53

A horse-drawn Howitzer Battery is seen being loaded on to special wagons at the Army Ordance Depot at Barby on 11th August 1914

A horse-drawn Howitzer Battery is seen being loaded on to special wagons at the Army Ordance Depot at Barby on 11th August 1914. The start of World War One, or the 'Great War' as it was known up to 1939, saw a general mobilisation across the country. The depot had extensive sidings and was operated by WD 0-6-0ST's in the World War Two. Other photographs are available showing similar actions at the same time at the LNWR goods yard. The flat wagons used allowed its ends to be dropped to bridge the gap between the wagons. It appears that the Howitzer Battery was loaded from the side of the wagon only just in view on the extreme right of the photograph as a ramp can be seen fixed at 90 degrees. This would also indicate that the cattle dock was used to manoeuvre the guns etc. on to the railway wagons. The date given would indicate that the mobilisation was in hand prior to the commencement of hostilities on the 14th August. Some observers wonder if the date might be incorrect as there was a major mobilisation of troops in the area in 1915 prior to the Gallipoli campaign which utilised railway facilities across this part of the county.

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