WAR DIARY

1/8th (ARDWICK) BATTALION MANCHESTER REGIMENT

JULY 1917


JULY 1 1917 - HAVRINCOURT WOOD
Quiet day. A few 4.2 H.E. on PIONEER VALLEY during the morning.
Platoon of C Coy. under 2nd Lt. FRANKENBURG went to RUYAULCOURT to practice for raiding. Work at night on new front line wiring parties of D coy. about midnight were shelled by T.M.s for about 10 mins. No casualties.

JULY 2 1917 - HAVRINCOURT WOOD
Quiet morning. Desultory shelling in the afternoon along PIONEER VALLEY and on CHEETHAM HILL. Gas alarm given from right Bn. East Lancs. Brigade at 11 pm. Raiding party under 2nd Lt. FRANKENBURG went out (see Appendix 2) as part of 127th Bge. Scheme to DEAN COPSE. Casualties 1 Killed. 2nd Lt FRANKENBURG and 8 O.R. wounded. 1 wounded and missing behind (?unknown?).
We fired gas shelled into HAVRINCOURT at 12 midnight.

JULY 3 1917 - HAVRINCOURT WOOD
Gas alarm off at 1.20 am. Hostile shelling on HUBERT ALLEY between (?unknown?) and near firing lines in the afternoon. Short bombardment of CHAPEL WOOD also at night.
Patrol out under 2nd Lt. EVANS met Bosche patrol. 3 O.R. wounded. Warnings as to possible Bosche raids from 3rd Corps.

JULY 4 1917 - HAVRINCOURT WOOD
Gas alarm at 1.40 am hardly noticeable in our lines. Heavy rain about 2 am trenches in a very bad state. A few rounds sharpnel on our front line. Our heavy T.M. registered in DEAN Copse. Preliminary move orders arrived.

JULY 5 1917 - HAVRINCOURT WOOD
Enemy artillery active between 8.30 am & 10 am. Bombardment at night by T.M.s, Howitzers, etc. of DEAN COPSE. Congratulatory Order came from Divnl. Commander. Trenches in a very bad state, a considerable amount of rain during the day.

JULY 6 1917 - HAVRINCOURT WOOD
Fairly quiet day. Relief by 5th Manch. commenced at 10.30 pm. Enemy artillery very active from 9.30 pm onwards shelling HUBERT ALLEY and PIONEER VALLEY Chiefly. Relief complete at 2 am. Casualties 1 O.R. Killed.

JULY 7 1917 - RUYAULCOURT
Bn. moved into billets at RUYAULCOURT last company arriving at 2 am.
The whole day was devoted to cleaning up and fitting. A combined Lewis and Machine gun (?unknown?) organized up the line.

JULY 8 1917 - RUYAULCOURT
Bn. at rest. Day devoted to fitting boots, etc. for the march. Advance parties sent off. Baggage, etc. sent down to dump ready for moving by train. One parade smartening drill.

JULY 9 1917 - BARASTRE
Battn. moved as part of the 127th Bge. to O 16 (BARASTRE). Moved off at 2.30 pm arrived there about 5.30 pm. Bn. Strength 27 Officers 703 O.R. No men fell out in the lines of march. Went into tents and bivouacs for the night.

JULY 10 1917 - BARASTRE
Bn. as part of the 127th Bge. marched on ACHIET-le-PETIT. Moved off at 8.30 am marched via BAPAUME arriving at destination 12.30 pm. Went into Camp vacated by 2/11th London Rgt. Camp in a very dirty state, most of the latrines had been destroyed.

JULY 11 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Battalion training commenced. Major LINGS assumed command of the Battn. vice Lt. Col. DOBBIN D.S.O. (to command 4th Army School FLEXICOURT).

JULY 12 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Battn. training continued. Capt BARLOW left unit for interview with India Office, to transfer to Indian Army. This Officer has served continuously with the Brigade since mobilization Aug. 4th 1914 and (?)holds(?) an unbroken period of service.

JULY 13 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
The day was treated as a Sunday. Church parade in the morning.

JULY 14 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Battalion training continued. Programme (see Appendix XIX).

JULY 15 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Battalion training. Coys. started (?unknown?) (?)on(?) rifle range.

JULY 16 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
As previous day. Enemy aircraft flew over camp about 6.30 am.

JULY 17 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Battalion training.

JULY 18 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Battalion Scheme this morning. Training continued.

JULY 19 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Brigade Scheme in vicinity of BUCQUOY. Major E.G.K. CROSS posted to command this Battalion.

JULY 20 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
This day was treated as Sunday. Church parade in morning. In afternoon Brig. Gen. HENLEY lectured on the fighting of the Ancre on JULY 1st/16 on the actual battle field.

JULY 21 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued.

JULY 22 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued. Battn. put through Gas Chamber to test masks. Half the Battn. inoculated. Demonstration of S.O.S. Signal.

JULY 23 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued. C & D Coys. inoculated.

JULY 24 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued. Brigade Tactical Scheme.

JULY 25 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued. The Brigade Boxing Competition held at 5.30 pm in the "CRATER" - formed by the explosion of a German Ammunition Dump before their Retreat in March 1917. Five men entered: Result: 1 Winner, 3 Seconds, 1 Consolation Prize.

JULY 26 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued. 2 LT.s S. THORP & W. BORRINO reported from 8th Res. Bn. Manch. R. 2 LT. THORP was in FRANCE before with the 2/8th (A) Bn. Manchester Rgt. Afternoon the first day of Sports (Bde.).

JULY 27 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Church Parade in Morning - in the Crater. Afternoon Continuation of Bde. Sports. A draft of 37 O.R. from 24th Manchester Rgt. arrived. Most of them have less that 6 mths. ...[part of image missing]...

JULY 28 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
...[part of image missing]...

JULY 29 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training Continued. The scheme in the morning.

JULY 30 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
The Bn. as part of the 127th Inf. Bde. proceeded by march route to G3 b59 to attend the Divisional Sports which was rather dumped by the showery weather. Draft of 31 O.R. arrived. Most of them have just turned 19 but have had a year's training. The physique is poor & height small.

JULY 31 1917 - ACHIET-LE-PETIT
Training continued. Range allotted to B & C Coys. 3 Officers on Bde. Machine Gun Tactical Exercise. N.C.O.s C & D under R.S.M. for Guards 6.30 - 7 am. New Drafts under R.S.M. for elementary instruction. Two men of Draft arriving on 27th Ordered to proceed to Base as Unfit. Semi finals for Divisional Boxing Competition. One man left in Finals (Pte. ROOKS).


Officers O.R.

Casualties
(from above listings)

Killed

2

Wounded

1 11

Wounded & missing

1

 

August 1917

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