It began with a snapshot taken with a Box Brownie camera on 6th August 1914 and ended with a commemorative march on 2nd August 2014 as part of Lord Lieutenant’s commemoration of the Great War.The tiny snapshot came to light in a Nourish family photograph album and was added to Langham Village History Group’s archive. (Three members of the Nourish family belong to LVHG.) The picture showed a group of soldiers, with an accompanying band, taken on the Melton Road at Langham. At first, the History Group could only speculate on the date and occasion but, after enlargement and enhancement, the picture was thought to bear a similarity to one taken in Oakham on 6th August 1914.On 2nd August 1914, the Oakham Company of the 5th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment Territorial Force had set off by train for Bridlington to take part in the annual two week training camp. However, events overtook them when war was declared on 4th August and, within forty-eight hours, they found themselves back in Oakham. On 6th August, they matched out of Oakham for Loughborough, their route taking them through Langham and Melton Mowbray to an overnight stop in Asfordby School and on to Loughborough, later to take their places in the trenches in France and Flanders.
Click photographs to enlarge
When the suggestion of a re-enactment march was made to the Rutland Remembers Group it was received with enthusiasm and organised for Saturday 2nd August 2014. Those taking part were: B Squadron (Leicestershire and Derbyshire Yeomanry) Royal Yeomanry; E Company Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and Rutland Army Cadet Force and F Squadron Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and Rutland Army Cadet Force. They were led by Col. Robert Boyle, chairman of the Rutland Remembers Group, and accompanied by the Lord Lieutenant, Dr Laurence Howard, who took the salute. Other group members taking part included the High Sheriff, Air Commodore Miles Williamson-Noble, Cllr Adam Lowe in 1914 military uniform, Cllr Martyn Pocock and Patrick Boyle.On arrival in Langham, a photograph was taken in the same spot as the original snapshot before the parade proceeded to Langham Village Hall for refreshments. In spite of heavy rain a good number of Langham villagers turned out to support the march which was filmed by the BBC and will form part of their coverage of the battles of Ypres in which the 5th Battalion Leicestershire Regiment played such an important part and where many lost their lives.
The Oakham Company on Melton Road Langham Marching in Loose Formation later on the 6th August 1914