Newark-on-Trent's position at the crossroads of the Great North Road and Fosse Way plus the Great North Eastern and Midland railway lines left inhabitants endlessly fearful that it would be a prime target when – rather than if – the Germans attacked England from the North Sea. The East Midlands town had been besieged during the Civil War; and the Vicar of the Parish Church lost no time in August 1914 urging the menfolk to keep the enemy far from the town's boundaries. Thousands left their rat-invested hovels to fight for King and Country. Their womenfolk took their places in factories that switched from making wooden buildings and agricultural machinery to manufacturing munitions. The children were taught for only half-days after their schools became barracks for trainee soldiers, were encouraged to spend their holidays working on farms – and were allowed to leave education aged only 13 so that they could start work.
As featured on BBC Radio Nottingham and in the Newark Advertiser and Bingham Advertiser.
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