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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Diary of a Dispatch Rider

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Continuing the diary of Corporal John Sangway, dispatch rider with XVII Corps. His signals company were not far from Cambrai, where fighting was ongoing.


8th Oct

Bet Monty 10 f[ran]cs to 100 that war would be over by midnight 7/8th Nov.


Ditto Best 1/2d to 5 f[ran]cs.


Still scrapping for C[ambrai]. Very hard resistance, but fresh & strong effort this morning – going well. Now sleeping in an “Old Bill” ‘ole. Shell-hole with curved iron over – not too bad, but small. Shortage of luxuries – SOS signals sent out, now too many almost! Won’t last long though!


Yesterday some of the thousands of dud shells got exploded by a fire. Wind-up – bits flying round office &c. Two traffic men killed.


9th Oct 2.0am.

Glare from Camb[rai] fires bigger & more ruddy than previous nights. Can. Cus. grim jest re peace mortals was to use those two words as code for a heavy art[iller]y bombardment, which opened up at 1.30 thunderously.


10th [October]

Still advancing in lumps. A note in [?NR] Gazette reminds me that W. Newton (one blue stripe) asked the GOC 65 Div[ision] not to advance till we had fixed up lines to them!


Hugh1 went home 29th Sept. Loud cheers!


1 John's brother, see 25/6/18


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