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Charles Leslie Lionel Payne
(1892-1975)
Chapter 5:  The Continent & War (Winter 1915/1916)

The King, accompanied by Lord Kitchener, did indeed inspect the troops at Beechborough Park on the 2nd September, and within less than two weeks they were off to France.  Nos. 5, 6, 8 and the Headquarters Companies entrained at Shorncliffe for the docks at Southampton on the 13th September, and embarked for Havre in France later that day.  CLLP and the rest of No. 7 Company, however, only entrained at Shorncliffe on the following morning, perhaps because they had longer to march from Otterpool.  They arrived in France on the morning of the 15th "in good shape", and proceeded to their temporary billets at St. Sylvestre via St. Omer.

By this time, the rest of the train was scattered, at Rouge Criox, Eecke and Hazebrouck.  It took a few days for their equipment, including supply wagons, to arrive, things being somewhat confused in the mean time.  The Headquarters Company moved to what would be their permanent base for the next few months at Croix-de-Poperingue on the 23rd September.  The remaining companies moved to Croix-de-Poperingue too over the next week.  No. 7 Company transferred from Neuve Eglise, near Nieppe, where they had been since the 22nd, on the 27th September.  Having all four companies of the train "within a small radius" of the headquarters, as well as having received at least some of their equipment, made it much easier to carry out their duties, delivering rations and forage to the troops of the entire 2nd Division.

The following is taken from the history of the 28th Battalion:

And this from The Journal of Private Fraser, ed. Reginald H. Roy (CEF Books, 1998, p. 23-24): On 1st October 1915, CLLP reverted to the ranks "at [his] own request".  Between then and 16th March 1916, when he made an application for transfer to the Canadian Machine Gun Company, the service records are completely silent about his activities, apart from details of his pay, and these do not show any locations.  Bud Payne remembers his father: Was this perhaps the period that he served with the Fort Garry Horse?  And was his apparently voluntary demotion to the ranks in order to facilitate such a transfer from the 2nd Divisional Train, C.A.S.C. to the Machine Gun Corps?

Chapter 6: Canadian Machine Gun Corps & The Somme Front (Summer 1916) 


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