Lytham St.Annes Coat of Arms
Lytham St.Annes, Lancashire, England



A newspaper article from 1914 proposing that soldiers should be billeted in St.Annes.


Newspaper cutting from November 1914

Troops in Training.

A meeting of members of Parliament representing seaside and other health resorts, was held at the House of Commons on Tuesday to consider the suggestion that, in view of the partial failure of the season, preference should be given to resorts in arrangements for the billeting of troops in training. The Secretary of the Federation of Health Resorts was also present, and it was decided to make representation on the subject to the War Office.

Soldiers billeted at a house in Lytham c1915

St. Annes Council, we believe, are not members of the Federation of Health Resorts, and unless independent action is maintained our claims are likely to he over-shadowed by the larger resorts. The Chairman and Clerk of the Council have visited the military authorities in response to a request made by the Traders' Association, but, up to the present, the promise that the claims of St. Annes-on-the-Sea would receive full consideration, has not materialized.

Perhaps the Council may consider, at their committee meetings, next Monday, that a courteous, reminder of the promise would be of benefit. At all events, it would keep the claims of St. Annes prominently before the authorities. A few thousand troops, billeted judiciously amongst company-house keepers who desire them would prove a boon and a blessing during a winter that is certain to go hard with a large proportion of our population.

The outlook for many of our apartment caterers and retail traders is none too rosy, and the circulation of several thousands of pounds a week would be preferable to a local distress fund. Five thousand troops would mean a disbursement of over £5,000 weekly based on the official scale of 3s. a day. Is it not worth a supreme effort before the winter arrangements of the War Office have been completed? St. Annes is eminently suited for the purpose of drill and manoeuvres. There are excellent roads in every direction, plenty of open spaces, and sandhills for Scouting.

St. Annes is an old militia. and volunteer training ground and with its sandy subsoil and almost complete immunity from snow, few localities offer equal advantages. Now's the day and now's the hour for our Councillors to help in a real sense, a very large proportion of their constituents and to keep the wolf from the door of many of our householders and shopkeepers. With more money in circulation the Council will find their task of carrying out improvements much easier.