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Rushden Echo, 10th September 1915, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Great Sham Fight Near Rushden

Volunteer Training Corps to Guard Railway Bridges

The Wellingborough and District Battalion Volunteer Training Corps had a strenuous day on Sunday when they carried out extensive field operations in the district between Ditchford Mill and the Wymington Ballast Holes. The men engaged totalled about 300, and their activities extended from 10 a.m. to about 8.30 p.m. The units engaged comprised: Wellingborough, under the command of Battalion Commandant H. Dulley, Adjutant Higgins, and Platoon Commanders Rowlatt, Gillitt, Coales, and Cox; Higham, under Commandant F. W. Margetts; Rushden, under Commandant R. F. Knight, second in command G. R. Turner, Platoon Commanders A. F. Weale, F. Sargent, and Pennis, Co.-Sergt-Major Beardsmore, and Sergts Wood and Jolley; Finedon under Commandant Henfrey and Platoon Commander Hinton; Irthlingborough under Platoon Commanders R. Bayes and Cook; and Wollaston under Commandant Russell.

The Wellingborough company left their town at 10 a.m., and marching across the meadows, met the Finedon and Irthlingborough companies at Ditchford-lane.

In the meantime the Rushden, Higham, and Wollaston companies, which had been drawn up behind a spinney off the Irchester-road, had sent out scouts, and these reported the enemy in large numbers on the left. The order to extend was at once given to the defending party, and a rear-guard action was at once commenced, Wellingborough, Finedon, and Irthlingborough attacking towards Knuston Park. The defending companies, retiring across the fields in the direction of Wymington, had the misfortune early in the action to lose about 20 men of their right flank, together with the Company Sergt.-Major in charge, but shortly afterwards the defenders captured fourteen of the enemy with two officers. They also took prisoner one of the enemy’s motor despatch riders. The retirement was continued in the direction of Wymington until the ballast-holes were reached, and here, in the field adjacent to the bridge nearest the village, spanning the M.R. main goods line, they made their final stand.

After rations, operations were resumed, Rushden, Higham, Wollaston, and Finedon companies moving off in the direction of Bedford-road, where they took up a defensive position.

The remaining companies delivered an attack, and honours were decidedly on the side of the defenders, as they not only cut off the whole of the enemy’s left flank but also captured his five motor despatch riders. Throughout, the manoeuvres were most skilfully carried out, the members of the various units displaying commendable intelligence and acumen.

At the completion of the operations the whole battalion fell in on the Bedford-road, near the Wymington turn and marched into Rushden. They were met at the bottom of Wymington-road by the Rushden Rifle Band, who headed the column to the Public Hall, where tea was generously provided by the officers of the battalion and members of the Rushden Urban Council.

After tea the men paraded at 6.30 and headed by the band marched to the market-square at Higham Ferrers from whence the various units marched to their respective headquarters.

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