Exhibition focuses on Gordon Highlanders in the First World War


An exhibition focusing on the Gordon Highlanders and their experience during the first months of the First World War has opened at the regiment’s museum in Aberdeen.

Shattered Hopes: The Gordon Highlanders in 1914 follows the unit throughout the battles of Mons, Le Cateau and Ypres.

Victoria Cross

Highlights include the sword carried by Captain James Brooke, posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross on 29 October 1914, during the first battle of Ypres.

Captain Brooke led two attacks German positions, regaining a lost trench and preventing an enemy breakthrough. His Victoria Cross, one of 19 is on permanent display at the museum.

The exhibition also features a drum belonging to 2nd Battalion, Gordon Highlanders that was abandoned in Ostend, Belgium, in October, 1914 and the medals of Private Peter Imlah, of the same battalion, who in 1918 was the sole survivor from a draft of 200 men who had left for France in 1914.

‘Extremely moving’

Jesper Ericsson, curator of the Gordon Highlanders Museum, said: ‘This is the exhibition that people have been waiting for. Public interest in the First World War is huge, and the story of the Gordon Highlanders in 1914 is both unique and extremely moving.

‘Focusing purely on the first few months of the war for the exhibition was a deliberate decision, as the Gordons were among the first to travel to France and Flanders after the outbreak of hostilities in August 1914, and were involved in all the major actions that summer and autumn, culminating at the end of the year in the Christmas Truce.’

To find out more about the exhibition, which will run until 19 November, click here.

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