Fraser’s letters and diaries from the front, which compose this absorbing book, were edited by his son, General Sir David Fraser, soldier, biographer, historian, novelist. They provide a vivid, often highly critical and virtually unbroken account of those extraordinary days, seen through the eyes of a young Highland office. In Good Company gives a remarkable insight into some of the most terrible and challenging years of the Army’s life.
Educated at Charterhouse School and at the Royal Military College Sandhurst, Fraser was commissioned into the Gordon Highlanders as a Second lieutenant in 1910[ and served with the 2nd Battalion in India and Egypt. When the First World War broke out, the battalion sailed for England, and landed at Zeebrugge in Belgium on 7 October 1914, with Fraser as Battalion Machine Gun Officer. It was soon in action at the First Battle of Ypres. During particularly heavy fighting in front of Gheluvelt on 28–29 October, Fraser was wounded. His elder brother, the Hon Simon Fraser, who had only been commissioned on 1 August from the Special Reserve (3rd Bn) Gordon Highlanders, was killed in the same action.
In May 1917 Fraser was appointed Acting Lieutenant-Colonel to command 1/6th Gordon Highlanders, a Territorial Force battalion serving in the 51st (Highland) Division. The battalion saw heavy fighting during the Third Ypres offensive that summer, and at Cambrai in the autumn.
By the end of the war Fraser was a temporary lieutenant-colonel, with a Distinguished Service Order, a Military Cross, and three Mentions in Despatches,