Newly discovered letters have revealed that many British troops did not want to play ball when it came to the Christmas Day truce of 1914. Previously unpublished messages from the Western Front describe how an entire regiment refused to take part in the festive ceasefire with the enemy.

Instead, the ­Scottish Seaforth Highlanders threatened to shoot Germans who tried to “fraternize”. The First World War truce saw more than 100,000 British and German soldiers lower their weapons and leave trenches to exchange gifts.

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