2/4th Battalion - Diary 1914

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October
October 24th The 2/4th Border Regiment, or the 4th Border (Reserve) Regiment as it was originally called, was formed during the Great War, at Kendal, on the 24th October, 1914, under the command of Lieut.-Col. J. F. Haswell, V.D., with Captain F. W. Halton, T.D., as Adjutant, and Colour Sergeant Instructor W. A. Price as Regimental Sergeant-Major. It consisted of 350 men recruited for the Battalion, and 193 N.C.O.'s and men, many of whom were recruits transferred from the 1/4th Border Regiment on the departure of that Battalion from Sittingbourne, Kent, to Burmah. The detachment from Sittingbourne arrived at Kendal on the 27th October, 1914, and the whole Battalion was billeted in the town. The period during which the Battalion remained at Kendal was spent in preliminary training, recruiting, and, as far as possible, equipping the Battalion.
December
December 1st C.S.-M. J. J. Brooks, of the 6th Border Regiment, appointed Lieutenant and Quartermaster.
December 7th The Battalion, consisting of 13 officers and 791 other ranks, proceeded to Blackpool, and was billeted at South Shore, Battalion Headquarters being established at the Grand Hotel. One officer and 10 other ranks were left at Kendal to form a Depot. The Battalion was attached to the South Lancashire Brigade, under Brigadier-General Campbell. No Brigade work was attempted, but preliminary training was carried out in earnest, the seashore and adjoining country providing a most excellent training ground. The four company system was adopted. Squad and company drill, route marching, preliminary musketry, physical training and bayonet fighting, night operations and outpost schemes, were enthusiastically tackled, in spite of the shortage of rifles and equipment, which proved the most serious obstacle to training, the shortage of rifles especially retarding the musketry training. During the Battalion's stay at Blackpool the activity of the German submarines off the mouth of the Mersey and in the Irish Channel necessitated the patrolling of the shores. The Battalion had to find the South Shore picket, which patrolled the shore at night for three miles in the direction of St. Annes, and also the guard on the South Shore Pier.