Issue Date: 31/07/2017
Issue Name: The Great War 1917 - 'There is still a Place in the Line for You'
Producer: Buckingham Covers
This cover commemorates the centenary of the First World War and features an image of a campaign poster of the time 'There is still a Place in the Line for You - will You fill it?'. It has a set of six stamps, each one featuring the following: 1st Class Shattered Poppy stamp, 1st Class ‘Dead Man's Dump', 1st Class Nurse Elsie Knocker and Mairi Chisholm, £1.57 Dry Docked for Scaling and Painting, £1.57 Tyne Cot Cemetry, Belgium, and £1.57 Private Lemuel Thomas Ree's life saving bible, and is available signed by Sally Knocker (Elsie Knocker's granddaughter).
The First World War
On 3rd August 1914, two days after declaring war on Russia, Germany declared war on France. Hours later, France made its own declaration of war against Germany, readying its troops to move into the provinces of Alsace and Lorraine, which it had forfeited to Germany in the settlement that ended the Franco-Prussian War in 1871.
Sir Edward Grey, British Foreign Secretary famously remarked "The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime." ON 4th August 1914, Britain sent its own ultimatum to Berlin: halt the invasion of Belgium or face war with Britain as well. A reply was demanded by midnight that night. The first German troops crossed the Belgian frontier at Gemmerich, 30 miles from the fortress city of Liege, that morning. When London received no answer to its ultimatum, Britain declared war on Germany.
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Sally Knocker has signed this lovely cover for us. Her great grandmother was Elsie Knocker, who was a British nurse and ambulance driver in World War I. Elsie Knocker is featured on one of these stamp sheet labels alongside her friend Mairi Chisholm.