The Northamptonshire Regiment of 1914 was an amalgamation of the 48th and 58th Regiments of Foot following the Cardwell reforms of 1881. They became respectively the 1st and 2nd Battalions and this should be borne in mind, because in the narrative these battalions are sometimes referred to as 1st and 2nd and at other times simply as the 48th and the 58th. This history is almost entirely taken up with those two battalions on the Western front, though there is a chapter on the 4th (TF) Battalion which fought at Gallipoli and in Palestine, and there are a few pages on the 5th, 6th and 7th (Service) Battalions, all three of which were also in France and Flanders. Of the six VCs awarded, four were won by the 6th Battalion, including an officer from the Bedfords and one from the ASC attached to the battalion, though in the latter case thot is not made clear. Fifty-eight battle honours were awarded and the book is dedicated to the six thousand and forty soldiers of all ranks who gave their lives.The 1st Battalion was among the first to go overseas, arriving in France on 13th August 1914 with 2nd Brigade, 1st Division. The first three chapters are devoted to the battalion and its actions at Mons, the retreat, the Marne, the Aisne and First Ypres. The 2nd Battalion was in Egypt when war broke out, came home and joined the newly formed 24th Brigade of the 8th Division, arriving in France in November 1914. Both battalions remained in the same brigades throughout the war, though for a period of nine months (October 1915-July 1916) the brigade was exchanged with the 70th Brigade of the 23rd Division. The narrative contains plenty of descriptive detail about the fighting with officers casualties named and individuals acts of gallantry recorded. The 1st Division was the one earmarked to carry out the landing on the Belgian coast behind the German lines in July 1917 with Middelkerke the objective for the 2nd Brigade. In the event it never happened but the description of the preparatory training is of interest. Appendices list the battle honours gained by the regiment and also the Honours and Awards, less the foreign ones. There is a good index.
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2005 N&M Press reprint (original pub ). SB. vii + 366pp with one map (in colour)
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