THE Church Army’s place as a hut provider in the very closest possible neighbourhood to the front trenches has been proved by the loss of fifty-two of its recreation huts, tents, and centres in the German advance, and the almost certain loss of five others, under heavy shelling at the time of information. This loss includes all the stores and equipment. The staffs of these huts and tents are all safe so far as is known, with the exception of those who stopped behind to help the stretcher bearers. But judging from the case of a valiant young Midland curate (an ex-Church Army evangelist) who is amongst those who have reached safety, they may be said to have come back hard. For his personal and practically forced retreat was a series of attempts to remain behind. Amongst the lost huts are the Oxford diocese hut, the hut given by the Church of the Annunciation, Marble Arch; the Farnborough deanery hut; the Ardwick, Cheetham, Eccles, Fylde, and Hulme rural deaneries huts; the hut given by St Stephen’s, Bexhill; one of the Church Army Gazette huts; the Carlisle G.F.S. hut; and four of the huts provided by the Malayan Huts Fund. The tremendous need of the Church Army Huts Fund is, of course, enormously increased by this great loss. That loss is a call to its patriotic helpers to rally to its aid. In due course, as soon as ever the military situation and military permission allow of it, the society hopes to replace all these lost huts.
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