I’m thinking again about the chapter on soldiers’ songs that I’m writing for a collection on the the First World War and the Arts.
In September 1914, a Times reader shared ‘the latest popular marching song from Aldershot’, whose words, he said, were the work of a sergeant in the Gordon Highlanders:
Send out the Army and the Navy,
Send out the rank and file.
(Have a banana!)
Send out the brave Territorials,
They can easily run a mile.
(I don’t think!)
Send out the boys of the girls brigade,
They will keep old England free,
Send out my mother, my sister and my brother,
But for goodness sake don’t send me.