Sixteen million people died in the First World War. No fewer than one in 40 of the nine million British and Commonwealth troops came from the single city of Glasgow. 200,000 men from Glasgow fought, 17,695 were killed and many many more were wounded with lasting injuries and lost limbs. We should remember the futility of their deaths in “the war to end wars”
16,000 British men are recorded as being conscientious objectors. The Richmond Sixteen were 16 men taken from Richmond Castle in North Yorkshire where the Non-Combatant Corps was based, to an army camp in northern France, refused to unload supplies. They were court-martialled and, as an example to others, sentenced to death by Lord Kitchener. They were only saved from this fate by Kitchener’s own sudden death and the prime minister, Asquith, who their sentence to 10 years’ hard labour. We should remember the social stigma these heroes had to bear for the rest of their lives.