Latest News

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14 March 2023

We were pleased that the photographs from On Call in Africa were celebrated in the recent circular from the Mary Evans Picture Library entitled Outposts of Empire. Click on the article photo to bring up the online index of all photographs included in the book.

26 March 2021

We have posted details of an interesting story on the fate of one of the guns from SMS Königsberg that resided for a period in Hove, United Kingdom. An account of this history is provided on the Hove in the Past website. Well worth reading.

23 September 2020

The latest newsletter of the Great War in Africa Association picks up the Spanish Flu stories from Kenya. Well worth spending time on the GWAA website and reviewing the archives.

24 July 2020

A remarkable story about Sydney Auchinleck and a  hitherto unseen poem on Friendship.


24 July 2020

The Spanish Flu in Kisumu, history rhymes in 2020.

And the tale as told in the June 2020 edition of Old Africa Magazine

Spanish Flu article from OA issue 89.

8 January 2018

Gillyflower Publishing is pleased to announce a special offer price for the book at 50% saving on the recommended retail price. Please take advantage via this website to purchase On Call in Africa for 17.50 GBP including postage (here).

28 December 2018

As part of the ‘Away from the Western Front’ project we made contact with Dr. Tony Jewell. He is a retired public health doctor whose father and grandfather were also doctors. Furthermore they had both worked in East Africa, and indeed Tony was brought up in Kenya. When their grandfather Dr. Norman Parsons Jewell died in 1974 his grandchildren uncovered an extraordinary record of the East African campaign through his memoirs and photos. He had never spoken about it to them, even though they had visited many of the places where the war had taken place. Working together, they published a book based on their grandfather’s records – ‘On Call in Africa‘. In September 2018 we interviewed Tony. In addition to describing some of his grandfather’s experiences, Tony uses his own medical background to comment on how the army medical services learnt from the experience of active service in tropical theatres, and how systems have developed.

Listen to the interview at Away from the Western Front

21 August 2018

The story of Zorawar Singh by Anne Samson focuses on one of Norman Jewell’s most trusted and hard working colleagues. Zorawar Singh

25 December 2017

A recent review by Professor A.G. Hopkins for the Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History provides additional insights into the East African History of WW1.  Review Hopkins Cambridge

27 October 2017

Sandie Jewell attended the Diversity House organized meeting on Stories from First World War in Africa, presenting on Sydney Auchinleck and Norman Jewell.  Interesting meeting with the grandaughter of Tom von Prince among many other encounters during this interesting day.

22 August 2017

This article on the health\medical determinants of WW1 in East Africa is well worth a read!

21 August 2017

A key day for the On Call in Africa book team – a memorable and important birthday of our sole lady member!

2 March 2017

Amazon Review ‘On Call in Africa’ is an intricate and insightful memoir, which serves not only as a rich historical resource, but as a fascinating personal narrative. I am working for a charity called Diversity House, and we are using ‘On Call’ as a learning resource for both primary and secondary schools. The children from all ages are fascinated by the content!
Revealing unique facts and observations about the East African campaign, as well as never-before-seen photos, this memoir is a must-have for anyone interested in/studying WW1 and Africa.

27 February 2017

Great news reaching us that On Call is being used to support teaching of year six primary school children in Kent on WW1 in Africa, an initiative led by Diversity House.  This is a very rewarding use of the documentary material, photographs and real life experiences from this period fully described in the book.  Many thanks Diversity House!

22 February 2017

We are delighted to be supporting the excellent 1914-1918 Online Encyclopedia with some photo illustrations by Norman Jewell.  Two current articles that have such images include:

East-Central Africa” by Anne Samson

Commemoration, Cult of the Fallen (Africa)” by Suryakanthie Chetty and Ruth Ginio

26 January 2017

We are delighted that On Call is now available from the bookshop at the National World War 1 Museum in Kansas, USA.  Please see their website when planning a visit.  The online store is here.

18 December 2016


Old Africa Magazine piece on Mombasa Hospital and the service of three generations of the Jewell family.

30 November 2016

The School of Chemistry, Trinity College Dublin, is delighted to announce the Trinity and Sydney E. Auchinleck Postgraduate Research Studentship.

A PhD studentship/scholarship in Chemistry called The Trinity and Sydney E Auchinleck Award will be announced for 2017.  This is to honour SEA as the first female graduate in Chemistry. The School of Chemistry itself was awarded a prize for gender equality this year (the engineering school Sydney longed to join is still lagging behind it seems).

3 November 2016

We are pleased to feature in the current edition of Family Tree Magazine.


21 October 2016:

We are pleased that On Call in Africa has been reviewed in Mombasa’s CoastWeek Newspaper Fascinating Memories of a Medical Man.

6 October 2016:

A recording of the talk given by Dr Tony Jewell at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Centre for History in Public Health on medical aspects of WW1 in East Africa is now available at the link above.


1 October 2016:

The battle for Taveta that took place 100 years ago described in this excerpt from On Call in Africa published in Old Africa Magazine Oct-Nov 2016.

25 September 2016:

We are delighted to have been reviewed in the Kenya African Rifles magazine Rhino Link October 2016

8 September 2016:

A useful newsletter from Mary Evans Picture Library.

4 September 2016:

We are pleased that Sydney Elizabeth Auchinleck is now honoured as the first female graduate in Chemistry at Trinity College Dublin – joining Norman on the website of

20 August 2016:

Please see a short article on the genesis of the book On Call in Africa.  OldAfricaIssue#66-On Call in Africa

16 August 2016:

We are pleased to note the recent blog post from the Trinity College Archives on Norman Jewell.  We hope that Sydney Auchinleck will similarly be acknowledged in due course.

7 July 2016:

We add new material, links and references all the time to our Useful Links page.  Recent additions include the short account of the war by Edward Paice for ARI How the Great War razed East Africa and the recollections of WW1 that were shared at the BBC hosted discussion in Dar Es Salaam in April 2015.  There is much other new material as well so please do visit and look from time to time!

24 June 2016:

A fascinating article by Andrew Kerr on the Kashmir Rifles Soldiers of the Kashmir Rifles in their tattered uniforms recalling events 100 years ago today.

22 June 2016:

Quite good discussion and interest is being generated by the review and the photoblog posted by the Africa at London School of Economics group.

14 June 2016:

The On Call in Africa Photo Collection by Dr Norman Parsons Jewell is now available at Mary Evans.

1 June 2016:

Dr NP Jewell ‘On Call in Africa’ Photo Collection provides a first listing with thumbnails of the photo collection that will shortly be accessible at .

Also today we have the first sighting of the Kindle Edition of On Call that should be available in all Kindle stores worldwide…

29 May 2016:

First sighting of the ebook version! On itunes . They beat Amazon-Kindle edition and others to put the book online!

22 May 2016:

We have been busy and this week should see the fruits of that work!  The ebook version of On Call should be available in the coming days through various retail channels.  We will link to those from the Buy the Book page as soon as they are live.  Hopefully we will have covered the main ebook formats.

Also we have formally submitted the Online Photo Collection from which the images in the book were selected.  The complete photo library will be available through Mary Evans and as soon as we have the appropriate links we will post those on this site on the Photos page.

Meanwhile a short report on the conference held recently at The National Archives is available here.  It was a very good meeting, as you will read!

10 May 2016:

For readers in Kenya and East Africa, we are pursuing options for local sales of books in Nairobi which should reduce the local price for On Call in Africa.  We will keep you posted and provide links as soon as any arrangement is in place.  Hopefully, once this is done,  Old Africa Magazine might add On Call in Africa to its book list for interested readers.

8 May 2016:

The meetings and presentations last week went well with much interesting discussion.

We are pleased that On Call is now available in the bookshop at the National Archives together with other related books on #WW1 in #Africa.

Many thanks to both Christine Nicholls and Old Africa Magazine for a nice review.

26 April 2016:

We are looking forward to the GWAA Conference at the National Archives, Kew, that takes place next week.  Dr Tony Jewell will be speaking on 3rd May about Dr Norman Jewell and his experiences On Call in Africa 1910-1932 (see 2 April 2016 below).

Tony will also give a talk at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine  on 4th May.  Details may be found here.

We are starting to investigate participation at the Chalke Valley History Festival and see what awareness there is at such an event for ww1 in East Africa.

14 April 2016:

We are trying to make it as easy and convenient to keep in touch with developments in the On Call in Africa world.  We now have a presence on Twitter @gillyflower_pbl and have added a Facebook Page as the existing Facebook Group was not suitable for wider access.

10 April 2016:

We are sending out books each day and pleased with the interest and kind feedback received to date. We have noted the strong interest from Australia and New Zeland and are trying to set up a supplier to mail out books locally to speed delivery and reduce costs (we ship a large number of books to Australia, which are mailed locally to purchasers). We will set up a new BUY button for Australia and New Zealand based book purchasers, probably at 40 pounds/copy, as soon as we have this in place, and will announce that news here.  For any further information or enquiries please ask

2 April 2016:

Publication date came and went and we have been busy sending out books. The Gillyflower systems all working smoothly to date.  However there has been an unexpected development with the main online retailers who have the book listed but have not contacted us for stock! We are working on that and meanwhile have provided books online at Amazon ourselves not to inconvenience those who prefer to purchase this way.  The link is here.  We are also busy ensuring availability of the book in Waterstones.

It is time to start preparing our presentation for the Conference at the National Archives early in May (see previous news entries below or the latest conference update here, or the final programme that is now available).

29 March 2016:

We are underway sending out orders.  In addition to direct sales from this website, there are attractive offers from online retailers Book Depository and Wordery who offer postage costs for those living overseas.  No shortage of ways to purchase your copy of On Call in Africa!

Please see some useful background information on the book by Anne Samson.

25 March 2016:

Easter treat! We have now received copies of the freshly printed book and are looking forward to you joining us in reading all about this extraordinary tale of early 20th century life in East Africa and enjoying the photographs and spirit of the people and times transmitted in this account of events.

10 March 2016:

The book is printed and now being bound.  Delivery of copies to us are expected comfortably ahead of the previously announced 31 March 2016 deadline. 100% produced, printed and bound in UK!

2 March 2016:

If you listen carefully, the hum is the sound of the printing presses at TJI producing and binding copies of On Call in Africa that should be available for purchase later in March.  Readers of Latest News will be the first to hear!

23 February 2016:

We are pleased to confirm that in addition to sending a copy of On Call in Africa to each of the UK Copyright Libraries (British Library, the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford, Cambridge University Library, the National Library of Scotland, the library of Trinity College, Dublin and the National Library of Wales) we received specific request also from the National Library of Ireland in Dublin for a copy.  Norman and Sydney would be pleased that a record of their fascinating story in the early 20th Century in Dublin will be available in the two  main Dublin libraries for interested readers and researchers. [update 25 March, the above copies have been sent to their respective libraries to be available for readers]

22 February 2016:

We will be attending and presenting at the forthcoming conference in early May at the National Archives, Kew on the Experiences of the Great War in Africa. The event combines the 5th Great War in Africa Association Conference and 3rd International Network for the Study of the Great War in Africa Meeting. Most recent update on the conference and speakers (1/04/2016).

20 February 2016:

We are pleased that the book is now at the printers TJI in UK.  We are looking forward to our first sight of print samples for the loose cover, photographic plates, colour maps and the main body of the text.  Nearly there! E-book preparation next…

Table of Contents and Illustrations

Index for On Call in Africa

Foreword to On Call in Africa

Hard back loose cover

Book Flyer

On Call Facebook Group

On Call publisher on Twitter


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