Lord Kitchener began his World War I recruitment drive - On this day in history


07 August 2019
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Lord Kitchener began a huge recruitment campaign days after the outbreak of World War I, on 7 August 1914.

Lord Kitchener began a huge recruitment across Scotland and the rest of the UK on 7 August 1914, three days after the country entered World War I.

Patriotic fervour at the start of the war (which many believed would be over by Christmas 1914) was such that over 30,000 men aged between nineteen and 35 were joining up each day in Britain. Scotland helped lead the field, with the entire Hearts Football Club enlisting. By the end of the war, more than 145,000 Scots had been killed - a fifth of Britain's war dead from a country which made up ten percent of Britain's population.

Kitchener was killed halfway through World War I, at the age of 65, on 5 June 1916, when a warship carrying him to Russia was sunk by a German mine after leaving Scapa Flow. His death became the centre of a number of conspiracy theories, with some witnesses claiming to have seen him being rescued from the ship.