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casualties mount
Death gradually began to intrude on the recruiting process and rolls of honour which celebrated the act of joining the army began to praise the dead.

Town councils gradually began commemorating all local soldiers – serving or dead. Temporary memorials were proposed and the Rolls of honour originally listing those who volunteered began to note distinctions won and more and more those who died.

  Punch cartoon December 1914          :: caption

Meanwhile, Anglican clergy started a movement to erect simple and cheap shrines in streets, dedicated to inhabitants who were in the armed forces with a special place for the names of those who had been killed. Sometimes services were held at the shrines around a parish with a procession and choir visiting all the shrines and collecting a congregation as it wound its way round the streets. At the diocesan Conference the Bishop of London Winnington-Ingram commended the idea of street shrines to his clergy ‘Don’t be satisfied with your honour roll in church, go into the streets and make them understand’, he said. Winnington-Ingram was an active and enthusiastic recruiter for the army, once saying mass from the steps of St Paul’s on an altar made from army drums. Then as now the Anglican Church need to attract more members. The growing anxiety and bereavements as the war dragged on offered many opportunities for filling the pews.

Not all the clergy were enthusiastic about this trend. Many were concerned at what appeared to them as dubious Catholic practices which smacked of superstition but the movement soon became accepted even amongst Nonconformists.










Michael: (gloomily) Mummy, I do hope that I shan't die soon.
Mummy: Darling, so do I - but why?
Michael: It would be too awful to die a civilian.