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Remembered Today:


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"Only With Honour"



Saturday 18th September.


This was a lucky day for the Regiment. At 4:30pm the Huns opposite Barkesham farm started on us with trench mortars and rifle grenades. They threw about 50 mortars and we threw during the bombardment about 28. I watched this from my dressing station, I could see the dust and debris rise in our lines at each explosion. I expected many casualties but as a matter of fact the regiment didn't lose a man or have a single casualty.

The only ones who suffered were the working party of Queens men. Two of them were killed by the first rifle grenade fired. It was curious about these two men, they were standing side by side, one of them had the whole of his head except the face blown off, while the other I could only find two quite small wounds, one on the right arm and the other over the third rib. I consider that he died entirely from shock.


Monday 20th September.

Captain Martin came in at 3:45am with two small wounds from rifle grenade, he will be all right in a week or so. Evidently the German deserter was correct when he said the Bavarian's had left and the Landwehr  Prussian  Regiment are now facing us. They may be only old men but there fighting spirit is there judging by the increased amount of "strafing" that is taking place since they arrived.

A horrible bilious headache came on this afternoon despite having starved myself . I felt cold and shivery , I was beginning to feel better and warmer when a message came to go to Lys farm. Went by car and found seven men (five of them Queens) wounded by a shell fuse, which, carrying as a souvenir one of the Queens men dropped. He was one of a party going at the time to the farm. It was dusk when I got there and the men were lying on the ground, multiple wounds all over body though none of them severe. My head was by this time wracking with pain. Walked back home to my billet . Oh what joy to get into bed!!


Friday 24th September.

Very close night. Couldn't sleep and started reading at 2:30am. At 4:00am a tremendous bombardment of the German lines developed on the right of the salient and very near. It was grand to here rapid and continuous fire from many batteries and see the flashes in the sky.

Things are developing!! Had secret orders read today and consultation with ADMS and Major Turner and officers. The ambulances  evidently intend to come into the limelight and are to be prepared for a rush. Turner has made all sorts of elaborate preparations, meaning well but rather interfering with our own work at the trenches.


*All material produced or reproduced here and throughout this blog is the sole copyright of the holder of the diaries of Reginald Hannay Fothergill (author)






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