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A description of the Christmas Truce 1914 from a soldier of the Royal Warwicks; more an opportunity for burying their dead than playing football.
I was serving with the first battalion Royal Warwickshire Regiment at a place called St Yves in Belgium. Spending Christmas Eve nineteen fourteen in a cold trench wasn’t much fun but things were quiet enough; no one had shot at us, which was a bit unnerving. That night we could hear the Germans singing carols and they even had a bit of a band playing, so we joined in with the singing from our trenches. The next day, Christmas, a German soldier called over to us and asked if we were the Royal Warwicks. We replied “yes” and after a bit of toing and froing, one of our sergeants agreed to meet them out in no mans land. We watched nervously as he met two German soldiers. When he came back, he told us they had exchanged a few gifts and had a cigarette together, and then later on it was one of our own officers who went out and arranged a truce with the Germans. It was a strange time really; going out into no mans land and meeting the enemy face to face. It’s a shame the peace didn’t last.
WW1 British infantry soldier
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