Sustaining Britain’s First ‘Citizen Army’: the Creation and Evolution of Reinforcement Policy for Kitchener’s New Armies, 1914-1916


  • Thomas E Davies University of Kent, UK



Expansion of the British Army through Lord Kitchener’s New Armies has dominated the historiography of the First World War, generating a substantial amount of work on local, regional, and national recruitment. Though important, it has drawn attention away from Kitchener’s efforts to create a reinforcement system capable of sustaining it. Therefore, this article will redress this imbalance by exploring the creation and evolution of reinforcement policy for Kitchener’s New Armies between 1914 and 1916. It will demonstrate that the reinforcement system underwent a chaotic expansion and, overall, could not meet the demands of industrial warfare.