Image ID: 22008
Courtesy of Nottinghamshire Archives
A massive army camp of wooden huts was built at Clipstone near Mansfield in WW1. Men of the UPS (University and Public Schools Brigade) were the first to arrive in May 1915. The camp was just one of those built to train the men of Kitchener's New Army. Clipstone Camp could hold upwards of 30,000 men. Over the next four years, men of many regiments came to the area. The once peaceful countryside was alive with soldiers digging trenches, practising on rifle ranges and stirring up the dust on country lanes as they went on training marches. The camp provided a new purpose in the Great War for people in the locality. The soldiers welfare was looked after in the towns and villages, (sometimes a little too well by a few local ladies!). Business opportunities prospered with the spending power of the soldiers and entries in Parish Register show that romance was also in the air. The church yard of St Alban's, Forest Town reveals the camp also had its deaths. Twenty eight soldiers and one nurse from the camp hospital are buried there. Towards the end of the war WAACS were stationed at Clipstone Camp and in its final years it was used as a demobilisation camp. Many of the huts were then sold, and used as village halls, and other purposes. (information from www.marples.mcmail.com) There was also a military hospital at the camp.
Organisation Reference: NCCW001513