A slight step back in time for my next Inktober. So today’s post covers two dates: 165 yrs since Lord Horatio Herbert Kitchener was born also 99yrs since his death. Lord Kitchener is best know for his appearance in the famous WW1 recruitment poster “Your country needs YOU!”. But he was much more than just a pin up. He fought successfully for the British in both the Sudan and the Boer Wars (earning quite a ruthless reputation I might add, not undeservedly) and also took part in the Survey of Western Palestine (basically an Ordinance Survey Map of Palestine) and held positions in India and Egypt. At the start of World War One in 1914 he was made secretary of state for war, during which time he organised the British Expeditionary Force. With a huge personality and a tendency to “withhold the truth” he had plenty of run-ins with his contemporaries and was stripped of much of his powers following a shell shortage which he was blamed for. In the same year, 1916, whilst en route to Russia on a diplomatic mission, the ship he was on, HMS Hampshire, hit a German mine and he drowned when the ship went down, along with some 600 others. Although he had far from a perfect record there’s something very British about Kitchener.
Regardless of his role, 2015 also marks the 100th anniversary of the second year of WW1. Indeed, well be having WW1 commemorations for another three years, which is quite sobering really.