First World War battle exhibition hosted at hall

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A century after the first shots were fired, a new exhibition about a First World War battle is set to open at Gunby Hall, near Spilsby.

The exhbition is being launched at the National Trust property next week to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of the Battle of Loos.

Last year Gunby staff discovered previously uncatalogued detailed maps and a plan of attack of the battle, which belonged to Field-Marshal Sir Archibald (Archie) Montgomery-Massingberd, who lived at Gunby from 1936 till his death in 1947.

The maps, which were badly damaged, were carefully restored and are now the centrepiece of an exhibition called ‘Battle lines: Archie and the Battle of Loos’.

The display is located in the upstairs sitting room of Gunby Hall, which will be open to visitors for the first time in its history.

At the time of the battle on September 25 1915, Archie was staff officer with IV Corps, whose task was the taking of the village of Loos and the immediate area. The battle was not the success the allied forces hoped for and there were many casualties without much gain.

The exhibition will be launched at a private preview for guests, staff and volunteers on the 100th anniversary of the battle on Friday, September 25.

It will be open to visitors from September 26 until the end of the 2016 season. The maps will complement a permanent exhibition in the Gunby basement about Archie. Admission to the exhibition will be included in the regular entry to the house and is free for National Trust members.