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Private McWatt


Harrogate Herald - 15th December 1915

Private McWatt, of the East Lancashire Regiment, is in the Police Convalescent Home with the loss of an arm. When war broke out he was in the Glasgow City Police, and he rejoined his regiment and went to the Front in August. After taking part in the Mons retirement he was in the battles of the Marne and the Aisne. He was afterwards in Belgium and at Armentieres. He was wounded in the first attack on Lille in October. McWatt came under the eye of a sniper whilst he was bringing in the wounded. A bullet struck him on the arm, shattering the bone. He had three operations, but eventually the arm had to come off. He has had six operations altogether. McWatt never learnt whether the sniper was brought to book. A search party was sent out, and as the fate of these gentry is almost always the same in the end, it is probable that the sniper got his deserts. McWatt had his arm amputated in Sheffield Hospital. It is curious, but he "feels" the "presence" of his lost arm when it is going to rain. McWatt tells of the Germans shelling continuously the hospital at Plogstreet. They kept this up for about six days, at the end of which the hospital building, which had been a nunnery, was a heap of ruins. The strange thing was, though, probably the enemy did not know it, that the hospital contained German wounded only to the number of about one hundred. The British, however, sent up motor and horse ambulances and got the German wounded out before any of them were hurt. McWatt has made a good recovery and looks in excellent health despite the loss of an arm.


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