V & H


Wounded Indian soldiers leaving the Kitchener Hospital in Brighton for their daily walk

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Publishers of a series of real photographic cards showing wounded Indian soldiers receiving medical care during the First World War at Brighton's Royal Pavilion and the Kitchener Hospital (former Workhouse) near the Race Course. The titles of most of the cards are handwritten, but a few cards have printed titles. All the cards are marked "V & H" on the front, and if the serial numbers are any guide at least 117 different cards were issued. Several 1915 postmarks have been seen.

The Royal Pavilion was turned into a military hospital and started receiving Indian soldiers wounded on the Western Front in December 1914. Late in the following year the Indian Army was withdrawn from the Western Front and redeployed to the eastern Mediterranean. Fewer and fewer Indian patients were sent to the Royal Pavilion hospital, which closed its doors in January 1916. It reopened three months later as a hospital for British soldiers who had lost arms or legs. The Kitchener Hospital similarly continued in use for treating British casualties.

V & H probably lived in Brighton, although they are not listed as such in Kelly's 1915 Sussex Directory or in town Directories of the period, and the possibility cannot be ruled out that they lived in some other town, perhaps London.

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