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8 erthygl ar y dudalen hon

z -_ - - -— : EX-SERVICE MEN.…

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z — EX-SERVICE MEN. 1 > RECOGNITION DINNER AT I ABERGAVENNY. 4[0 ENTERTAINED. Some difficulty has K- experienced at A'»cr- £ avormy as to the fon;i 01 public recognition \Thich should be given t., local ex-service men, and the varying suc.uc.stion>, 'coupled with the question of finance, < vcasioneii a little delay. However, it was gencally agreed, after due con- sideration, that it was best to carry out the original intention of giving a dinner to all who wished to participate. This took place on Saturday in the Market Hall, which was the only possible place in the town to accommodate 1 1- e rtiui l )er of mei7 sucit a large gathering. The number of men who attended the dinner was not as large as was expected, for out of some 600 invitations or applications onlv about 400 responded. In addition to tIp dinner it had. been intended to present the men with addresses, but these were u-'i. ready, and they will therefore he sent to their homes. The preparation of the Market Hall had entailed a lot of work, but this was ably carried out by a number of willing helpers, I,{ whom Mr. Trevor Jon.cS, Mr. Charles Dowues, and Mr. Percy Fraser should be specially mentioned for their labours in regard to the decorations. The dinner was admirably served by Mr. and Mrs. Williams, of the Hen & Chickens, the menu being as follows —Roast beef, boiled beef, roast mutton vegetables sweets bis- < uit3 and cheese. The fare provided was liberal, aii'I seemed to be thoroughly appreciated by the men. Cigarettes were given by Messrs. Ogden Bros., Godfrey Phillips. Hignett Bros., P. & J. Smith (Glasgow), Yernis & Co.. R. & J. Hill, Stephen Mitchell & Co. beer was provided by Delafield s Brewery, IJanfoLst Brewery, Messrs. Arnold Perreit & Co and aerated waters by Messrs. Bath. Hansard, and Carter. Mr. C. W. Harris lent the piano. The Mayor (Aid. Z. Wheatley, J.P., (Maer Hedd y Fermi) presided at the head table at the bottom of the Market Hatt, and was supported bv Councillor G. R. Plowman (Deputy Mayor) and the following officers -Major-General A. Sofly-Flood, C.B., C M G., D.S.O. I,t.-Col. E. B. Herbert, Col. W D. Steel, V.D., Lt-Col. J. G. Bishop, O.B.E., Col. H. Miers, D.S.O., Capt. F. P. J. Hanbnry, Major B. W. Powlett, Major J. R. Jacob, Capt. S. T. Beard, O B.E., Capt. B. J. Francis, Lt.-Col Mangels, Major Budd, Capt. Tresawna, Lt. Bishop, Lt. Gough, Lt. Sifton, Capt. Moon, Lt Nicholls, T,t. Powlett, Lt. Hannan, Lt. H. G. Lemon, Lt. Mitchell, 1.1:. Powell, Lt. G. Hiley, Lt. Evans, Lt. Powell, Lt. Beveridge, Lt. Close, Lt. Mansfield, Lt. Crutdiley, and others. Good Soldiers and Good Citizens. I Major-General Solly-Flood, in proposing the toast of The King," in a speech of soldierly brevity, said that it was a great pleasure to him to be amongst them that night. As an officer and pre-war soldier he had been through it himself. They had been comrades in beating the Boche, and they were also comrades in the matter of home-coming, which meant so much fa those who were survivor-, meant more to their wives and families, and meant even more still to their dear land of liberty — England. (Ap- plause) Thev had shown England that they were good citizens by their upright life and Lidustry and good hard work, without any Bolshevism. Let them help her to take the satne place in commerce as she had done in battle among the nations of the world-first, for that was the only place for her. (Applause). It was a great pleasure to all to brighten their .home-coming, and as best they could afford to mark their appreciation of their loyal service to their King and country. Major-General Solly- Flood then submitted the toast, which was heartily honoured. The toast of The Prince of Wales and the rest of the Royal Family" was proposed by Col. W. D. Steel, who remarked that the Prince of Wales was striving hard to follow in the footsteps of his noble grandfather, and no doubt many of them had seen his nimble little figure going about the battle front during the war. He had much pleasure in proposing his health. This toast was also enthusiastically honoured. Our Glorious Manhood. I Tke Mayor, in proposing the next toast, said: I Mayor-General Solly-Flo jd, Officers and Gentle- men, I have the honour to propose the toast of Our Guests." It is one which I can assure you gives me the greatest pleasure. I fear that I cannot find words that will express my feelings and those of the burgesses in this ancient liorough, to show you and your comrades how desirous we are to give you a right royal wel- ciesirous we are to g L;-e z come home and if I fail to give expression to my feeling, I must ask you to put it down to the feeling that one experiences when overcome with emotions of joy and gladness. Our minds must go back to the scene that was enacted in this building five years ago, when the news was pro- claimed that this country was called upon to make the greatest decision in its history, owing to a harsh and cruel challenge which was thrown down, and the echo of which re-echoed over the deep as a direct challenge to the nobility of our race. The answer given by the leaders of the day was wor'hy of the great count y and the great Empire of whi h we form a part. On the ist of August, 1914, this country was, by CQffltiioa <-ocisr-nt, aqrrutted to be «•- most unwarlike people in the vrori^ c, which, I am afraid, was I '>' by the lethargy of its citizens, whilst on the Coutfnent every male adult from the time he arrives at the years of intelligence looks upon war as part and parcel of his life. Thus they were prepared for the terrible fight that was to I rage practically throughout the world for five -ears. But the clarion call that rang out in this country was responded to in such a manner as was never known. Millions of men who had never fought before rushed with wild en- thusiasm to the call and rallied in defence of the • >id flag. Their numbers were such that we, although the premier manufacturing conuntry, .<tuld not cope with the demands for arms to • ■quip them for the fray. Therefore we have reason to be proud of the manhood of this country, amongst whom are numbered our guests of this evening. I venture to say that never in t; e history of the world has there been sach a multitude of men who have displayed for t .1 period of nearly five years such sustained courage. Whilst we are proud of our soldiers, we are as proud of our sailors and, mercantile seamen, and I venture to say no one can fully estimate the constant strain upon the courage and devotion to duty of our seamen. I am sure vou would not like me to omit giving a word of praise to those brave women who faced all dangers to attend and comfort the wounded on the various fields of battle. In closing, I must say a word about the multitude of silent men, women and children who quietly bore the rack- ing strain and anxiety and other griefs in their itomes. These have been years when in millions of homes in this land every knock on the street door sent a shudder of fear through anxious hearts. It often brought a message of desola- tion indescribable. We shall only know on that great dav what agony this war has brought to millions of home. It can only then be known the runount of silent heroism which has been dis- played in enduring that grief. And here and now it is well to remind this country that all classes have suffered alike. I therefore, in all sincerity, give the health of our guests. Lt.-Col. Bishop, in responding, returned thanks for the enthusiastic welcome and said they were all glad to get home once again. Major-General Solly-Flood had spoken about comradeship, and he hoped that in the days to come thev would all be comrades together in verv truth. Pioneer A. Douglas also responded, and said that the men very much appreciated the recep- tion which had been given them. The Peace Mayor. Lt.-Col. E. B. Herbert submitted the toast of The Mayor, Aldermen and Burgesses of Aber- gavenny," and in doing so said that he felt it a great honour, as an old soldier, to be present lucaong a gathering of men who had done their duty, and he regarded it as a compliment that he should be asked to propose the toast of the Mayor and Corporation of Abergavenny. He knew the Mayor personally, and he knew that he had done a considerable amount of volunteer- ing in his lifetime, and he had been of consider- able assistance to him (Lt.-Col. Herbert) in regard to the raising of the Monmouthshire Volunteers. He had tilled the office of Mayor very faithfully and loyally and well during the "War, and now he was the Peace Mayor. There had been manv Mayors of Abergavenny, but none, in his opinion, had come up to the standard set by the present Mayor. He had done work which no Mayor in Abergavenny had done before, and he had done it excellently, and he hoped that he would have a peaceable and pleasant time during the remainder of his office. The toast having been duly honoured, the Mayor and Councillor Plowman suitably re- sponded and returned thanks for the hearty manner in which the toast had been received. The toast of The Subscribers and Enter- tainers" was propos-eit by Major J. R. Jacob, He said that when war was declared Aberga- venny mustered very strong forces, and there were very few able-bodied men left in the town after the first few months. When the men were wanted they were forth* riming. When they came back they were asked what they wanted, in the shape of a welcome, and there was a ) I difficulty in finding out what they desired. Some wanted things which were beyond their I means, but when it came to a reasonable sug- gestion there were plenty of people ready and willing to provide the means of entertaining them. He coupled with the toast the names of I Mr. Trevor Jones (who had not only subscribed liberally, but had also done the decorations) and Mr. John Owen Mr. Johu?\veu, in resp"ns?.. said that the sub- scribers felt it a great honour to contribute to that entertainment or to do anything for their guests thar evening. The war had taught us a great lesson—that whether a nan had culture and learning or not, A man's a man for a' that." (Applause). He sincerely hoped that the time would never come when they would forget that lesson, but that they would always look upon a soldier, whether he he clothed in broadcloth or fustian, as a brother. As King Henry V. said, He who sheds his blood with me shall fie Uly brother." Those were his sentiments (Applausei. It was found impossible to carry the musical programme through in its entirety owing to the difficulty of the artistes making themselves heard, but songs were given by Messrs. A. Best, W. H. Garner, F. Wiugrave and IF. Parker, the accompaniments being played by Mr. J. R. Rosser, A.R.CO. Before the company broke up, Auld Lang Syne was sung, with clasped hands. A. ■

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