"A Curious Thing Occured A Lark Started Singing"

EXHIBITION : IRELAND AND THE GREAT WAR

About this Item

A veteran describes going over the top at the Battle of Messines Ridge, 7 June 1917, just after the British Army had detonated 19 massive mines. In the confusion he came across some terrified German troops.

  • Title
    The Irish Brigades In The First World War
  • 1st Broadcast
    08/12/1974
  • Contributor
    Kieran Sheedy (Producer)
    Tom McGurk (Presenter)
  • Clip Duration
    00:03:59
  • Material Type
    Audio
  • Clip title
    "A Curious Thing Occured A Lark Started Singing"
  • Extended description

    Just before dawn on the 7th June 1917 there was a calm prior to the Battle of Messines. A veteran recalls this moment as the quietest one he remembers during his First World War service and the unusual sound of a lark singing. He describes having to go over the top with shells exploding, massive mine explosions, and aircraft firing from above.

    Later in the day they came upon a small group of terrified German soldiers who had been left behind to man the frontline.  

  • Information

    'The Irish Brigades In The First World War' was a two part documentary for radio. The programme examined the participation of the Irish Brigades in the Great War using personal accounts of the battles from surviving members.

    The documentary was produced by Kieran Sheedy and presented by Tom McGurk. The clip used here was taken from part two and broadcast on 8 December 1974.

    The photograph accompanying this clip shows German trenches churned by British shells.

    Courtesy Library of Congress LC_B2_4341_9 

  • Local keywords
    First World War, World War 1, Great War, Wars, Conflicts,
  • Geographical coverage
    Ireland, Messines, Belgium
  • Topic
    Wars and Conflict
  • Publisher Broadcaster
    RTÉ
  • First broadcast channel
    RTÉ
  • Production year
    1974
  • Country of production
    Ireland
  • Original identifier
    AA15864
  • IPR restrictions
    Rights Reserved - Free Access
  • Rights terms and conditions

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  • Item type
    part/extract
  • Item sound
    Mono
  • Language used
    English (eng)
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