SUSSEX-PLUS-L ArchivesArchiver > SUSSEX-PLUS > 2001-01 > 0979080862
From: "Jim Fuller" <>
Subject: Re: Sling Camp WW1
Date: Tue, 9 Jan 2001 22:54:22 -0000
Yes you are undoubtedly on the wrong list for this post. GREATWAR-L or
WILTSHIRE-EMI-L would probably be more appropriate. However, I am
pleased to be able to assist as I live only a few miles away from the
The camp was initially named "Sling Plantation" after the woods nearby.
It was a name specific to this camp, established as an annexe to Bulford
Camp in 1903. Soon after the start of war, New Zealand troops started
work on building wooden huts here. They were later joined by Canadian
troops, joiners, bricklayers, and civilian workers. The word
"Plantation" was then dropped from the title and it simply became Sling
Camp. After building was completed, it was said that if each hut were
placed end-to-end they would measure 6 miles.
In 1916, the camp was occupied by New Zealan forces and was then known
as Anzac Camp by some. It then comprised of four main sections:
Auckland, Wellington, Otago, and Canterbury Lines. It was officially
called the 4th New Zealand Infantry Brigade Reserve Camp, and trained
reinforcements and casualties who were regaining fitness.
In Oct 1918, there were 4,300 men at Sling. Soon after the camp suffered
large casualties as a result of the Spanish influenza.
After peace was made, the camp became a repatriation centre. At that
time there was unrest in other camps as a result of delays in
demobilising troops. To occupy them, the New Zealand soldiers were put
to work carving the shape of a large Kiwi in the chalk of the hill that
overlooks the camp. It is still there today.
Much of the original camp was demolished in the 1920's and replaced by
A few years ago, my father was approached by a New Zealand film company
who wanted photos of the camp being built. As I understand it, the film
company intended build a mock-cup of the camp for the film. I don't know
the name of the film or the company, perhaps the film never even got
made, but would be interested if anyone has any more info about this.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Butler" <>
Sent: Tuesday, January 09, 2001 8:55 PM
Subject: Sling Camp WW1
> Hi Listers,
> I am hoping someone knowledgable about military history at the time of
> 1914-18 Great War may be able to solve a conundrum.
> Many New Zealand soldiers were posted to 'Sling Camp' on the Salisbury
> Plains during the war, prior to being sent to France. My grandfather
> one of them.
> I would like to know if 'Sling Camp' was a specific army camp of if it
> generic name for any assembly/training/departure camp?
> I am also interested if there was any connection between 'Sling Camp'
> Bulford Camp on Beacon Hill in Wiltshire. I believe a large figure,
> shape of a Kiwi, was cut into the chalk by New Zealand soldiers in WW1
> the gentle slope of Beacon Hill just above Bulford Camp.
> I realise this may be pushing the limits of Sussex-Plus. Perhaps
> could suggest a more appropriate list to post the query?
> Thanks in anticipation.
> Michael BUTLER from New Plymouth, New Zealand.