Life After the Trenches


Michael Foley looks at the British forces that occupied Germany after the Armistice.

When The Guns Fell Silent November 1918

As 1918 drew to a close, the final moves of the conflict that had swept the world were in sight. But the beliefs of a large number of the participants that they would be allowed to go home after the Armistice proved to be in vain. Many found themselves stranded in France, while others were on their way to Germany. Their final objective was not always one of their choosing.

While Europe’s civilians were celebrating the end of the war there was little for the soldiers to get excited about. In Angreau, Belgium, on 10 November 1918, the men of the London Rifle Brigade did not believe the conflict was ending. They were still under fighting orders and marching on their way to Erquennes. It was only when they saw a declaration posted at brigade headquarters they stood down. The men then watched the hours pass on their watches until it came to 11 o’clock on the morning of the 11th.

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