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WAR ZONE REVISITED

A PADRE ON ACTIVE SE,WIC£

STORIES OF THE GREAT WAR

" Round the World m a Digger Transport" was the title of a lecture by Padre W. B. Scott delivered at St. Stephen's Schoolroom under the auspices of the Ashburton Returned Soldiers' Association last evening; The scope of the lecture, however, was far wider than its title indicates. Padre Scott opened his address by a picture of the cause, the Kaiser, and m conclusion gave an account of the great victory demonstration m London. The. attention of the large audience was held throughout by the excellent lantern pictures of the various scenes described and by Padre Scott's intimate account of .the events which centred m each picture. Mr James Cow presided, and briefly introduced the lecturer. In his opening remarks Padre Scott had the assistance of a map of Northwestern France, where, within a few miles of each other, he was able to show the commencement of the war for the British at Mons, and its glorious close at Le Quesnoy. The pictures which followed were 1 an eloquent testimony to the poignant years* which were to intervene between these two events. Padre Scott transported his hearers first to Gallipoli, where the New Zealand Division received its baptism of fire. The illustrations were a silent witness of the deeds enacted there and the labours of our men on that inhospitable shore. Finally, on a relief map, the site of the Gallipoli memorial at Cfape Helles was shown, all that will remain of the epic of Gallipoli. To those who had not passed through the Panama Canal, and to those who had, Padre Scott's splendid description, with views accompanying, made this colossal work loom again m its huge proportions. Padre Scott took his audience by rapid stages to Kingston, Jamaica, a visit which included a view of the stranded Athenic; thence, to the village on Manhattan, Island, and so to London. From the heart of the Empire, the track was a wellbeaten one for all soldiers m the N.Z.E.F. and for their civilian friends who had followed their progress by letters. The jumping-otf point m France, the great depot at Etaples, j was visited, and the stark tragedy of I a. crowded soldiers' cemetery " with little wQoden^ crosses, row on row,", was laid b&fel From then on Padr Scott asked his htarers to march with him m that victorious offensive which commenced at Lonpart Wood on August 21, 1918, and ended on November 11 m the armistice at Le Quesnoj. The illustrations ,of the town of Baupaume visualised m striking fashion the complete destruction which modern war brings m its train. Padre Scott ! many aspects of this terrible theme, from the ruins of the town to the corpses of Germans and the shattered horse-flesh of bombed artillery lines. One picture proved to all present that some of this devastation did not arise from legitimate bombardments m war-time, but was m cases purely wanton destruction by the Germans. This illustration depicted a French textile factory m Beauvois which had not been damaged by shellfire, yet within the machinery had been smashed into small pieces by the retreating Hun. i The pictorial gallery rapidly shifted to Le Quesnoy, Mons, Namur, Liege, ... Aix la Chapelle, and then Colognes For every picture Padre Scott had a story, an incident, or an explanation, told m a manner at once fluent and racy, with an occasional touch of sentiment or humour that never failed of its mark with the . atidience. The t speaker knew the value of local colour, and painted it m as opportunity offered, at Namur showing the prison where a local boy was incarcerated as a prisoner of war. His comment anc description when the active stage of campaigning had passed to make way for the victorious progress into Germany was quite as instructive. His hearers were impressed no less by the religious spirit which had given Rhineland its Cologne Cathedral m comparatively recent times as by the Church of the Twelve Apostles, whose beginnings date back to Charlemagne m the eighth century. At the close Padre Scott was accorded a most cordial vote of thanks for his vivid and interesting lecture. •

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG19211004.2.6

Bibliographic details

WAR ZONE REVISITED, Ashburton Guardian, Volume XLII, Issue 9622, 4 October 1921

Word Count
700

WAR ZONE REVISITED Ashburton Guardian, Volume XLII, Issue 9622, 4 October 1921

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