6th Battalion, Royal Berks
1st July 1916

Links & Resources

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The Wardrobe Regt. Museum

The Wardrobe is the Museum of the Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment. Includes lots of online information, including a searchable database of War Diary entries - invaluable in researching the Regiment during WW1.

Royal Berks in WW1
The Royal Berkshire Regiment in WW1 is by John Chapman, who is a Trustee of The Wardrobe museum and co-author of the 4 book "Kitchener Btns. of the Royal Berks." series (see "literature" below). This site covers the whole Regiment and has much useful and interesting information.
Farmers Boys History
The Farmers Boys History Site relates to the history of the parent units of the Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment prior to the various amalgamations between them. There is plenty of information on the Royal Berks.
Great War Society
The Great War Society is a huge resource packed with information. The link here takes you straight to their own Links Section, which is probably the largest on the net - and makes pointless there being any more here.

The First Day on the Somme by Martin Middlebrook

Essential reading. Martin Middlebrook has managed to combine thorough research with gripping narrative to describe events all along the British lines from dawn to dusk, along with invaluable background, analysis and graphics. What really makes this book a masterpiece though is the huge contribution from participants in the events of 1st July, 1916.

Somme by Lyn Macdonald

This meticulously researched book covers the whole of the Somme campaign and is told largely in the words of survivors of Kitcheners Army. Lyn Macdonald is rightly regarded as a leading author on the Great War. Among her other works are "Voices and Images..." (see below) and the deeply moving "They Called it Paschendaele", the story of the men who endured the hell of that tragic battle fought in the mud of Flanders.

On the Somme by Colin Fox and Others

The second of four books from the extra-mural studies dept. of Reading University which follow the Kitchener Battalions of the Royal Berks. The first, "Responding to the Call", deals with their formation and early years whilst "On The Somme" covers the battalions during the Somme Campaign. Includes recolletions, detailed casualty lists, official sources, short biographies of the men involved and of course accounts of the Somme battles concerned. "Arras to Cambrai" and "Their Duty Done", the third and fourth in the series, cover the latter stages of the war and afterwards.

Montauban by Graham Maddocks

The story of the successful assualt on Montauban on 1st July, 1916. Includes a wealth of details about the southern tip of the British offensive, helpfully broken down into Brigade and Battalion accounts of progress on the day (inc. the part played by the 6th Berks) as well as much background information, photos and tour guides for today's visitors to the battle areas.

The Imperial War Museum Book of the Somme by Malcolm Brown

Military historian Malcolm Brown draws heavily on previously unpublished Imperial War Museum records, personal diaries, letters and other accounts, both British and German, to paint a remarkably fresh perspective of both the 1916 offensive and the actions on the Somme of 1918.

The Face of Battle by John Keegan

As well as being a detailed assesment of three famous battles, including the Somme offensive, "The Face of Battle" attempts to analyse the psychology of warfare from the point of view of the common soldier. Very informative and interesting, it includes particularly well researched reasons for why it all went so horribly wrong on 1st July.

Voices and Images of the Great War by Lyn Macdonald

A large collection of soldier's accounts and letters chronicling the whole of the First World War. Also included are many photos and contemporary posters, newspaper cuttings, etc..