Guest Books for Hinton House Red Cross Hospital

Amongst the archives at the Somerset Heritage Centre are guest books for Hinton House Red Cross Hospital.

Hinton House was lent to the Red Cross by Earl Poulett early in the war. Its’ first patients, 15 wounded Belgians, were received on 18 October 1914. By December 1915, English soldiers began to arrive.

The hospital closed between February 1916 and July 1916, but reopened for soldiers injured during the Somme offensive, and remained operational until the end of the war.

 

An entry from one of the Belgian patients

An entry from one of the Belgian patients

 

The guest books are signed by patients, often listing their names, regiments, details of their injuries and giving thanks to the nursing staff for their kindness. The patients saw service in France, Belgium, the Dardanelles, Egypt, Salonkia, Palestine and Mesopotamia, with injuries such as trench fever, lumbago, frost bite, shrapnel wounds and unspecified ‘wounded’.

 

The entry of Lance Corporal Dixon of the Leicester Yeomanry

The entry of Lance Corporal Dixon of the Leicester Yeomanry

 

At times the soldiers got a bit creative.

 

A Yorkshireman’s advice, from Private W Coates of the 12 (Sheffield) York Regiment

A Yorkshireman’s advice, from Private W Coates of the 12 (Sheffield) York Regiment

 

 ‘Feeling the Pinch, the Goose-Step up-to-date’ by Private William Brydson of the 8th Seaforth Hussars, a satirical view of the German food shortages

‘Feeling the Pinch, the Goose-Step up-to-date’ by Private William Brydson of the 8th Seaforth Hussars, a satirical view of the German food shortages

 

 ‘Gasses on Six’, a poem by H Witenhall

‘Gasses on Six’, a poem by H Witenhall

 

The entry made by Private Chamberlain of the 5th Royal Berkshire Regiment, whose sentiments reflect many others

The entry made by Private Chamberlain of the 5th Royal Berkshire Regiment, whose sentiments reflect many others

 

The final guest book has also been signed by soldiers in the Second World War, who were billeted at the Old Malt House, Hinton St George from September 1939 to February 1940.

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