David Lloyd George Visit To Newport 1918

Photo reference number: 2147

Prime Minister Lloyd George visited Newport August 10th 1918. He is pictured here at the entrance to Shaftesbury Park being greeted by munitions workers. Below are two contemporary newspaper reports. The first report outlines the details of his visit. The other concentrates on the speech he made rallying munitions workers, armed forces and miners for a steady unrelenting last push against the Germans to end the First World War.

Many thanks to Ian Reese for sending us this photo.


WESTERN MAIL - Monday 12 August 1918


The Prime Minister (the Right Hon. D. Lloyd George, M.P.) brought his South Wales tour to a close on Saturday with a visit to Newport, where he was entertained at a public luncheon by the mayor of the county borough, and afterwards visited the Comrades of the Great War Fete at the Shaftesbury Park. Both at the Town-hall and in the park the right hon. gentleman delivered eloquent addresses, in the course which he commented on the good news from the western front, paid a glowing tribute to the gallantry of our forces on land and sea, and appealed to the miners throughout the Empire to re-double their efforts to increase the output of coal, which was to-day more than ever an essential weapon of war


The Prime Minister was cordially cheered as the car rushed swiftly through Cardiff, he was recognised by many people among the morning shopping crowds, and as the car slowed to pass through Duke-street the Premier smilingly acknowledged the cheers that were raised.

He was accompanied Mr. Wm. Brace, M.P., the Under - Secretary for Home Affairs, in the capacity of a Monmouthshire Parliamentary representative to take the Prime Minister across the borders from Glamorgan.


Mr. Lloyd George had a most hearty reception at Newport. Near the Royal Gwent Hospital, the right hon. gentleman was met by the mayor (Mr. William Evans), the deputy-mayor (Mr. John Moxon), the town-clerk (Mr. A. A. Newman), the chairman of the county council (Mr. Alfred Onions), and the clerk to the county council (Mr. Lyndon Cooper), who were presented to the Premier by the Right Hon. William Brace, M.P. Large crowds gave the illustrious visitor rousing cheers, and these were renewed again and again as he proceeded to the Town-hall. The streets were profusely decorated, and the flags looked gay in the bright sunshine. A guard of honour of discharged and demobilised sailors and soldiers was provided.

At the Town-hall luncheon was laid in the Assembly-room, where the mayor presided. His worship was supported by the Premier, the lord-lieutenant (Lord Treowen), Mr. Lewis Haslam, M.P., Sir Garrod Thomas. M.P., Sir Clifford Cory, M.P., Mr. W. Brace, M.P., Sir Henry Mather-Jackson, Bart., Sir Thomas Watson, Bart., Sir Leonard Llewelyn, Mr. W. J. Lloyd (the "Father" of the Newport Town Council), and the Mayor of Monmouth (Mr. W. Sambrook). The gathering, numbering about 160, represented all the public, life and commerce of the town and district.

The Deputy-mayor (Mr. John Moxon. O.B.E.) proposed the toast of "The Prime Minister" in a very eloquent speech, which was received with great enthusiasm.

... ... ...


Dense crowds lined the streets as Mr Lloyd George left the Town-hall for Shaftesbury Park to attend the fete on behalf of the Comrades of the Great War. He was cheered all along the route. As in the morning, the way was kept by mounted police, under Chief-constable Gower and Supt. Robinson. At the park gates a guard of honour, consisting of nurses, munitioneers, wounded comrades, and boy scouts, was drawn up.

A large open-air platform was erected on the fete ground, from which the Premier addressed a very large gathering. Capt. Cunynghame (commandant of the Newport branch of the Comrades of the Great War) presided. Immediately in front was a considerable contingent of wounded soldiers, who gave the right hon. gentleman a most enthusiastic reception when he appeared on the platform. The Prime Minister, who was accorded a great welcome, said he was delighted to meet many men who had taken such part in this great world conflict.


Abergavenny Chronicle And Monmouthshire Advertiser
Friday August 16, 1918


Mr. Lloyd George visited Newport, Mon., on Saturday, and at a luncheon in the Town Hall dealt with the progress of events on the Western Front.

"Things are improving at the present moment," said the Premier. "The news is distinctly good. I see by the latest communique that the prisoners have already run up to 24,000 and that we have captured between 300 and 400 guns. One place we have captured is a most important place opposite Amiens. There since the start we have driven the enemy back twelve miles. If you had known the anxiety we had owing to the fact that the railway through Amiens was directly under gunfire you would realise what the news now means. It means that Amiens is now free from gunfire - Amiens, a place where 100 trains a day pass through. We were deprived of that railway centre for a time. Recently we were able to put through twenty trains a day, but now it will be safe.


"It is due undoubtedly to the brilliant qualities of our troops and of the French troops, and, as I understand, of the American troops, who are also in. It is due to the very courageous leadership of Sir Douglas Haig and General Rawlison and of the French generals. I think a right share of the triumph has been attributed to the unity of command. It has been a great combined operation, in which French, British, and Americans have each played their part in a general plan, in which we have not each been fighting his own battle. Everybody has combined, and you have had one great directing mind. That is what has enabled us to achieve a great victory on the Marne and a great victory on the Somme. Between those two great victories we have captured from 50,000 to 60,000 prisoners and from 800 to 900 cannon.


"Those are very significant and triumphant facts. Still, I want to say again, it is not over. This country has got to depend upon its resolution and upon its courage. It has got to keep up its heart in the long struggle. It is the heart that tells in the long climb. It is the heart that tells going over rough country. It is the heart that tells in the long run, and I want that heart to be steady - not a heart one moment throbbing wildly with excitement, while the next moment you can barely feel its pulsations; not an intermittent heart, not an irregular heart, but a good, steady heart, beating with hammer strokes. That is the heart that will go through; that is the heart I want. We are now doing well. Do not get too excited over it. Keep steady. You will want your heart again. Do not work it too much.


The Premier proceeded to urge the need of increasing the output of coal, not only for our own needs, but for those of France and Italy, and appealed to that effect to the miners of this country, the colliery managers, the proprietors, and everybody concerned.

"I ask the coal workers," he added, "to look across the seas, and they will see there men armed to trample down the liberties of the world. What I say to them is, 'Sling coal at them; hurl it in waggonloads.' Every extra waggonload of coal means winning victory, which represents Liberty, Justice, and Peace throughout the world. I want them to feel they are not working for wages or for their own comfort or for what they will get out of it, but that they are working for the emancipation of mankind. Whatever weapon they use in those mines, they are striking a blow for Freedom. Let them redouble their blows, and we shall win."