Stephen Warner Diaries, Volume I, October 1915

Saturday October 3

“we were just in the middle of a fairly simple operation when Major Maynard-Smith came in to say that he must have me in theatre for a sudden haemorrhage of the common carotid artery! This was clearly tricky to operate and we got to work as soon as possible – 4 doctors on the job with myself helping one to give an intravenous saline injection – we fought hard for a long time but it was not to be”

Wednesday October 6

“the second operation was a good deal more interesting as it consisted of the extraction of a bullet which had situated itself over the left eyebrow, passed through the skull at the base of the nose and lodged on the inner side of the right orbit, immediately behind the right eye”

Wednesday October 13

“Pt. Dawson of the Northumberland Fusiliers was operated upon. The operation was successful for the patient and so. Back to the ward with what appeared to be a good clean wound – by 11.00 the next morning to lunchtime dressing was done, it was found badly gangrenous! On October 13 he had to have his leg amputated”

Archaeological objects on display at Lowewood Museum

Last year, Lowewood Museum refurbished its archaeology display which explores the history of the Borough of Broxbourne, from the very earliest times up to the 1600s.

On display are some of the most interesting objects in the Museum’s collection. Find out more about them in this blog and pop into the Museum and see them and many more fascinating objects on display.

Cloak toggle

Iron Age 800 BC to 43 AD


This toggle, made from a piece of antler, was found in Turnford in 1954. Antlers and bones were used throughout the later prehistoric period to make things like toggles for fastening clothing, as well as needles, pendants and dice. The objects themselves, like this one, are often decorated with concentric circles, a pattern typical of the Iron Age period.


Gold Aureus of Trajan

AD 114-117

Gold Aureus of Trajan. Lowewood Museum Application

Found by metal detectorists on land adjoining Ermine Street, Cheshunt, this coin came to the museum through the Portable Antiquities Scheme. The finder kindly waived their prize money and the Museum was able to purchase it with a grant from the Hertfordshire Heritage Fund.

Baselard Dagger

Late 1300s


In 1918, this dagger was found by a workman beneath a hedge near Dark Lane, Cheshunt. It was sent to the Royal Armouries Museum in 1954 to be identified, and was found to be a most interesting find. It remained on loan with them until 2014 when it returned to Lowewood Museum. This type of dagger was specifically for civilian use and the form of its surviving silver sheath-mount shows it was originally accompanied by a small by-knife for domestic use.


Lowewood Museum is free to attend and open Wednesday – Friday, 10am – 4pm and Saturday, 10am – 5pm. Members of the public can call the Museum on 01992 445596 to find out more or follow the Museum on Twitter @Lowewood.

James Ward, RA

James Ward

James Ward was an English painter and engraver, often referred to as the greatest animal artist of the early 19th century. Born in 1769, he expressed fine drawing ability from a young age. His career began at the turn of the century when he was commissioned to create a series of animal portraits for the Board of Agriculture, leading to his reputation as a skilled animal artist.
Ward’s abilities led to a commission to paint both Wellington’s charger Copenhagen and Napoleon’s Marengo. He became a full member of the Royal Academy in 1811, and by 1814, the public saw him at the height of his reputation. It was during this time that Ward produced Gordale Scar, one of his most ambitious and greatest works.

In 1828, he moved into Roundcroft Cottage in Park Lane Cheshunt where he lived for 30 years. Ward is now ranked among the leading artists of the British Romantic movement.

The new gallery at Lowewood Museum features a number of his animal and landscape paintings and sketches. His works also feature in many museums and galleries, most notable the Tate Gallery, London.

The Borough of Broxbourne and Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation

On 9 September 2015 Queen Elizabeth II claims the title as Britain’s longest reigning monarch, having reigned since the age of 25.

She acceded to the throne in 1952 following the death of her father and has reigned during a time of great change.

Queen Victoria previously held the title of longest reigning monarch.

Below is a gallery of images from the Museum’s collection showing parties held for Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation around the Borough of Broxbourne.




Stephen Warner Diaries Volume I, September 1915


Wednesday September 1

“the first batch of sisters arrived this afternoon – among them Miss Meadows who was acting matron at Beachborough when Miss Machmahon left. She was surprised to see me and was quite pleasant – but I could not forget that time when I had nicknamed her ‘sour face'”

Friday September 3

“Lovett was depressed this evening so to cheer him up I offered to give him the satisfaction of beating me at draughts – however I beat him twice so that the cure was not effected!”

Sunday September 5

“5.00pm official notice given to authorities that hospital was ready to receive patients – I am detailed for night duty in ward JH”

Thursday September 9

“Pt. Raine who had a bullet go through the back of his head in a line with the tops of his ears. Brain matter came out under tension and portions of bone were removed. He seems to be trifle better though still only semi-conscious”

“what a thing it is to be soldier! Talking of food, a staple diet with no ____ is machanochie’s rations (a restch firm) these rations are tinned meat and vegetables which came to the table in the form of a messy stew”

Sunday September 12

“some of the nurses had letters from home today saying that a zeppelin has found London to some purpose at last and has done some damage to Liverpool Street and in Threadneedle Street”

Wednesday September 15

“today just as we were about to start upon a simple operation of incisions for drainage of some shell wounds, the other orderly was suddenly called for and brought back back a man from ward F (this ward so far had had the largest number of operations and most of them serious) suffering from a surrounding haemorrhage – the original truth was a gun shot wound in the thigh just above the right knee resulting in a contaminated fracture of the femur”

Monday September 20

“we received a visit from the Queen of Portugal (the widow of King Carlos) 47 – Thursday September 23 “some of them were so delighted at the thought of going to England many were on stretchers and some were so young to be returning home with only one leg or one arm as the case may be”

Saturday September 25

“rumour has it that all the hospitals in the neighbourhood have been asked to take in, if possible, more than they are supposed to have. If this be so, then the struggle at the front must be titanic”

Wednesday September 29

“what grand news from the front! The 3rd German army corps surrounded – but at a great cost”