Tuesday, 11 November 2008

11 November 1918: Cessation of Hostilities

Extract from ‘Notes For A Parish History’ (ERO T/P 188/3) written by Revd. E. H. L Reeve of Stondon Massey (Essex).

11th November 1918

The Armistice was signed at 5 o’clock this morning, to take effect from 11 o’clock. The news was known early in London, and was made known by the hooting of sirens and the noise of maroons. Some in Stondon heard the distinct bells at Brentwood. But it was not till the afternoon that definite tidings reached the villages and then it filtered through chiefly the form of private messages. News came to Stondon that flags were being hoisted on the Military Hospital at Ongar, and that the veteran Field-Marshall Sir Evelyn Wood VC had visited the place and communicated the splendid message to the wounded men. As soon as I had this official intelligence the Stondon Church bells were chimed with all the old vigour by Ernest Baines, our sometime sexton. His son, a young fellow of 19 bearing the same name, has recently been wounded in one of the last engagements on the Italian Front and is in Hospital in Italy with injuries (as we at present understand) to both legs.

Distant rockets and other tokens of joy were heard around us as the evening advanced.

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