On Sat evening I walk to Ash, a large village 6 miles from Betteshanger Camp where we are in training.  It was a lovely evening, and as I walked I had no idea that on the morrow I should be marching away on active service, and equipped sufficiently enough to meet an attack at any time.  At 8.25, I return, and after mustering my men, and reporting them, I turn in.   Sunday Oct 4th
 3.30 am. News is received at headquarters that all of the Brigade is to proceed upon active service at once.  Reveille sounds; in order to rouse the men out as quickly as possible, the "Band" in charge of the "bandmaster" is got out, and with barely any clothes on, they go round to every tent to rouse the sleepy occupants. Immediately, men turn out; and clad only in their shirts follow round the band, singing and shouting, to awaken the remainder of the men.  All are got out, and parade in full strength. Lieut Anderson tells us that  the "Anson" Battalion is proceeding on active service at once.  Ammunition would be served out to every man before we left.  At 6 am breakfast, and after packing our kit-bags we take them to a specified place, ready for transit.  8.30 All hands "fall in". Ammunition is served out as far as 
 it will go.  There is not enough for every man to receive the full complement , so each man gets 50 rounds and are told there is plenty on board of the transport.  After receiving a "sandwich" apiece, which consists of half a loaf of bread, and 1/2 lb of corned-beef, "bully-beef", we march off to the tune of "The Minstrel boy to the war has gone" while Lord Northbourne exclaims "Come back, my boys and see me". Lady Northbourne is with him and weeping.  For eight miles we march through peaceful villages, with people, in some instances just coming out of church, and  wondering where this dusty, joyous, and happy-looking crowd of sailors, armed to the teeth, are going.   At noon we reach Dover, and amidst shouts and cheering from the inhabitants, we march through to the Naval Dockyard where, after being
 given half a pint of ginger beer, and a piece of cake, also a good rest, we embark on the transport "Oxonian", belonging to the Leyland S.S. Co.  At 11.0pm we get under weigh in company with the transport "Mount Temple"  - C.P.R. liner - and escorted by the "Foresight", a destroyer and submarine.  We arrive off Dunkirque at 4.0am Monday morning.   After lying outside to enable the "Mount Temple" to moor inside the Docks, we proceed there also, amidst cheers whilst  our band plays the "Marsellaise" , which is so dear to the hearts of the French, as is the National Anthem to the British.  We berthed alongside of Government shed and commenced to disembark our troops, stores and conveyances, also maxim guns and 2,000,000 rounds of ammunition.  When all the gear is off the ship, we "fall in" and each man receives
 a greatcoat, also those who have no jersey receives an extra flannel to put on over the one he is wearing then, as the weather was pretty cold.  When all are "kitted up" we commence to serve out biscuits and rations also ammunition to last us at least two days, as we are told we are proceeding to a place where it might be impossible to obtain these things perhaps for days.  All this time, although we are in a country infested with the enemy,  we have no idea as to our destination , nor how soon we shall be in the firing line.   At 7.0pm our commandant - a very able man - addressed the "Anson" Battalion, informing us we were to proceed at once to Antwerp.  Should the line be clear, we would ride all the way, but in the case the enemy had cut it, we should be obliged to cut our way 
 through at any cost.  He requested our motto to be - "Sobriety, courtesy, and devotion to duty." To this we loudly cheered our answer.  11.0pm after waiting an hour or two for the train, we fall in again, and march off to the carriages.  The train itself was the longest one I have ever seen,  with no less than four engines.  The reason for having such a long train was that it was hard to accommodate the whole of our Battalion, which would, we know, be needed, in case the enemy made his attack. As they were known to be in considerable force, it would require all our numbers to drive him off.  Before leaving Dunkirque, we were told to charge our magazines, not to go to sleep, but wait for the order to fire, and to  get beneath the carriages to fire from . This would afford ample 
 headcover.  Night passes away, nothing occurs, beyond that the train stops at every station to learn if possible, whether or not the line is clear.  During all these stops,  the poor Belgian peasants are bringing us out hot coffee, bread, beer, cigarettes etc  which are welcomed with delight by us, for it is very cold, and exceedingly uncomfortable, being cramped up in the carriages.  At noon we arrive at Antwerp central station, we disembark from the trains, and as we pass out of the station into the street, we each receive a small tin of sardines, which I must admit came in very useful when we arrived in the trenches, for  the empty tin came in as a drinking utensil, we having no cups.   Upon marching through the streets en route to the gate leading to Fort Waelham, we were greeted everywhere by the delighted 
 population with presents of hot coffee, bread, butter, chocolates, sweets, beer, milk, cigars, cigarettes,  tobacco, fruit, - in fact everything.  It was quite amusing to see the men trying to accomplish the acrobatic feat of drinking a cup of coffee or a glass of beer, or even a bottle, whilst on the march.  Also to have the Belgian women-folk, craving a kiss from the "brav Anglais".   After marching through the town, to the quarter very near the gates on the road to Lierre we call a halt, and to our surprise are told off to "billets".  We, the machine gun section, also the "band" are told off, for "billeting" in a dancing hall.   We detail off sentrys, the remainder are told off to lie down in the straw to  get what sleep they can - we had then none for more than forty-eight hours.   The orders are that we shall get what sleep we can, and
 then march off to the trenches to relieve the marines.  On obtaining leave, I, with P.O. Learmouth - machine-gun section - and a jolly good fellow, endeavour to get a shave, and I in addition a haircut, as we thought it would be quite some time ere we should be able to obtain another chance.  We obtain the much-needed shave, and I, in addition the much-needed haircut - bought some nice cigars and cigarettes to smoke in the trenches, and arrive in the street in which our battalion is quartered, and,  to our surprise, we see all our men lined up in marching order.   When arriving to where our own sections are drawn up and waiting, our Officer-in-charge - Mr Duncan - and a splendid fellow - told us to get on our gear at once as  the Battalion were marching off        
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