Would you have welcomed an Aussie to your home in 1918?
When the war broke out in 1914, the echoes carried to all corners of the British Empire, and the call brought forth an extraordinary display of solidarity. Soldiers from as far away as Canada, New Zealand and Australia signed up to help in the war effort having been brought up with a strong sense of loyalty and obligation to the Empire.
Of course fighting so far way from home, meant that soldiers who were lucky enough to get some leave had nowhere to go, so the British people were called upon to help, as the extract below, taken from the Bromley & District Times newspaper, in 1918, shows:
Hospitality Invited for Australian Soldiers
A paragraph was inserted in our columns last summer inviting ladies and gentlemen to receive Australian soldiers at their homes as guests.
In order to ensure for these fighting men a really enjoyable and beneficial holiday during their leave (not exceeding fourteen days) any ladies and gentlemen who would care to welcome Australian soldiers at their homes as guests for part or the whole of the fourteen days should kindly communicate with the Commandant of the Australian Administrative Headquarters, 130 Horseferry Road SW1.
Such offers will be gratefully received and all communication will be promptly dealt with.
Bromley & District Times, 12th April 1918, page 3