Drill 6

NFB drill BexhillRobert Graves encountered the Canadian”rough-and-readiness”:

I used to have big bunches of Canadians to drill four or five hundred at a time. Spokesmen came forward once and asked what sense there was in sloping and ordering arms and fixing and unfixing bayonets. They said they had come to France to fight and not to guard Buckingham Palace. I told them that in every division of the four in which I had  served there had been three different kinds of troops. Those that had guts but were no good at drill; those that were good at drill but had no guts; and those that had guts and were good at drill. These last fellows were, for some reason or other, much the best men in a show. I didn’t know why and I didn’t care. (1)

(1) Robert Graves. Good-bye to All That. (1929). NY: 1980. 187

The image is a still from a film showing Canadian officer cadets in training at Bexhill in Britain. They perform some very nice manoeuvres.



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