Life in Beccles 1914-1918

The events of the First World War were in many ways a catalyst for what came afterwards. Between 1914 and 1918 the world changed and so did Beccles.

Based upon newspaper cuttings, mostly from the East Suffolk Gazette, which the Beccles Town Mayor assiduously saved and eventually pasted into three scrapbooks, a snapshot of life of the Town and surrounding area was kept. Based on a categorisation system that the Mayor devised a large amount of detail about every day life is recorded. From the way that the National Government instructed local communities to conduct themselves to the way that those communities implemented the rules and down to what individual people thought of them and how sometimes decided to ignore them.

The Museum project after some 5 years work is now coming to an end. Below are the 28 sections that the Mayor created and we have been able to research 15 of them, the latest sections to be completed are Agriculture and Gardening (Section 1) and Peace Celebrations (Section 21). Just click on the highlighted title and the link will take you to the relevant information.

Volume I
IWar Time Agriculture and Gardening
IICasualties: Killed or Wounded at Home or Abroad; Prisoners of War
IIIChurches and their Activities
IVCivics - relating to Beccles
VComrades of the Great War
VIControls: Food, Fuel, Lighting, etc
VIICounty Courts
Volume II
IXFlag Days
XGeneral, Co-Op; Friendly Societies; League of Honour; Strange Events;
Trade, Advertisements; other items
XIGifts and Greetings
XIIGuardians of the Poor
XIIIHospital Work
XIVIndustrial Institutions
XVLetters from the Front
XVILocal Honours
XVIINotable People who died between 1914 and 1920
XVIIINursing Institute
Volume III
XIXOrganisations for work
XXOrganised Sports and Pastimes including Lectures Fetes, etc
XXIPeace Celebrations
XXIIPolice Courts
XXIIIPolitical Activity
XXIVReliefs (War) Pensions