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JefR

6th Loyal North Lancs - Gallipoli Diary

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JefR

Sgt William George LEONARD

6th Loyal North Lancs.

I'm looking for the circumstances surrounding the death of Sgt Leonard on the day or two leading up to his death on 13th August 1915 at Gallipoli.

Does anyone have the diary for that time?

I'd very much appreciate a copy.

Best regards

Jef

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Stephen Nulty

On the morning of the 7th, the battalion marched to the foot of Chailuk Dera and on the night of the 8th it was sent forward to a point knownas as the Apex to reinforce the NZ Brigade.

On the 9th, three columns were sent to complete the conquest of Chunuk Bair. The summit was held thoughout a day of terrible heat u der repeted Turkish attacks coevred by heavy shelling. By the evening of the 9th, only a few troops were left and they were relieved throughout the night

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JefR
On the morning of the 7th, the battalion marched to the foot of Chailuk Dera and on the night of the 8th it was sent forward to a point knownas as the Apex to reinforce the NZ Brigade.

On the 9th, three columns were sent to complete the conquest of Chunuk Bair. The summit was held thoughout a day of terrible heat u der repeted Turkish attacks coevred by heavy shelling. By the evening of the 9th, only a few troops were left and they were relieved throughout the night

Thanks Stephen, your help is very much appreciated.

Could you point me in the direction of what you think is the best published account?

Regards

Jef

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Stephen Nulty

Jef

I've just realised that I only reported on activity up to the 9th, when your query related to the 13th. I'll check again this evening.

I have the regimental history which you can find at NMP here I don't know whether it's the best account - there may be something more specific to the battalion out there but I'm not aware of it.

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PhilB

The 6th Loyals were overwhelmed by a Turkish attack on the 9th. 494 casualties including 11 officers and 211 men killed. I have a trio and plaque to CSM James Brown from Manchester killed that day (NKG Helles Memorial). I`d appreciate any further information about him.

As there were 445 missing (before final figures were reached) and the battalion looks to have been withdrawn on the day (and Sgt Leonard has NKG) I`d assume, without further evidence, that he was missing on the 9th & assumed dead on the 13th.

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Stephen Nulty

Phil

I;m planning to visit Manchester Central Library early next week (I'm only working over the road), so if you tell me what you already know about him, I'll see if I can find anything in the local papers of the time

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PhilB
Phil

I;m planning to visit Manchester Central Library early next week (I'm only working over the road), so if you tell me what you already know about him, I'll see if I can find anything in the local papers of the time

Thanks. Just 3566, born, lived & enlisted Manchester.

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michaeldr

quote: Sgt William George LEONARD - 6th Loyal North Lancs. - I'm looking for the circumstances surrounding the death of Sgt Leonard on the day or two leading up to his death on 13th August 1915 at Gallipoli.

This old thread may be of interest;

see http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/i...c=22084&hl=

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PhilB

That was a good thread! I`d forgotten that. :)

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whkay

Jef

My Great Grandfather fought with the 6th and was injured on the 10th but lived. I would agree with Phil that he was probably injured on the 10th and died later. Anyway I have the following from the diary, history and Bean..

On the 9th August at midday the Battalion were ordered to relieve the Auckland Battalion at Chunuk Bair with the relief completed at 10pm. At 3.45am on 10th August the Turks began to shell/throw bombs until the full scale attack began at 4.45am, sunrise..

10th August 1915, action at Chunuk Bair/Pinnacle, 6th Loyal North Lancs with two and a half companies of the 5th Wiltshires in support below the crest. They were overwhelmed by a whole Turkish division plus 3 battalions. The Battalion history says the Loyals had 11 officers and 8 men killed, 30 ORs wounded and 445 missing presumed killed.

At 04.30, just as dawn was breaking on Chunuk, the Turks charged against the three British battalions. The Loyal North Lancashire’s were overwhelmed in the enemy rush; the Wiltshires were caught in the open and annihilated. On their right, not quite in the main flood of the Turkish charge, the Leinsters stood firm.

There were about 2000 defenders on or below the summit of Chunuk Bair. Baldwin's brigade at the Farm numbered a further 3000. The Turks swept over the Lancashire battalion on the summit, wiping it out to the last man. The Wiltshires were killed or driven into the steep valleys. The Turks headed down Rhododendron Spur towards the Pinnacle, driving the New Army troops before them. New Zealand machine gunners positioned at the Apex shot down the Turks as they tried to continue down the spur. The gunners could not discriminate friend from foe so they also killed many New Army troops who were amongst the charging Turks. The Turks descended to the small plateau of the Farm and annihilated Baldwin's brigade. About 1000 British were killed, the rest driven off into the surrounding gullies.

From Bean, page 706 onward: August 9 1915: “Arrangements had to be made to relieve at nightfall both the troops upon Chunuk Bair and the Auckland Infantry which was still holding the advanced support line at the Pinnacle…The two battalions which could most conveniently have been sent forward were the 6th Loyal North Lancashire (who had been in reserve all day at the Apex) and the 6th Leinster, which had been brought up the Chailak Dere at midday. By Godley’s orders, however, the Leinster, being the one fresh reserved battalion, was not to be thrown into the fight if it was possible to avoid doing so. [General] Shaw accordingly chose … the 5th Wiltshire. The relief was to begin at 8pm…but The Wiltshire, which had to come from the Argyl Dere, could not arrive until 1am. The 6th Loyal NL was therefore sent forward alone.” The LNL held both the advanced foothold and the Auckland’s old half-way position at the Pinnacle. The 6th Leinster occupied the Apex. Eventually about 2 am [10 August] two and a half companies of the [5th Wiltshire] battalion reached the Apex and were then guided into position by a New Zealander”. At about 0300 or 0330 am on August 10th, … some bombing began at Chunuk Bair and at The Farm, and also a little later at the advanced position of the 9th Worcester below the crest between Chunuk Bair and [Hill] Q. ….As daylight increased the enemy’s artillery shelled the position. There was a renewal of bombing and the North Lancs in the front trench of Chunuk Bair was firing sharply at the bomb throwers when over the crest came a line of Turkish infantry advancing with the bayonet. This was followed by other waves topping all parts of Chunuk Bair from its southern shoulder near Battleship Hill to its northern slope above the Farm.” “The North Lancs appear to have had no bombs with which to reply to the enemy’s preliminary bomb-attack; but the New Zealanders camped in the Chailak heard a tremendous out-burst of British rifle-fire. Then the North Lancs broke both at Chunuk Bair and at the Pinnacle. A remnant appears to have stayed and to have been bayoneted by the enemy. “When the 5th Wiltshire, who had been digging, saw the Turkish line descending upon their right, they also ran back, down the Sazli Dere. Four or five lines of the enemy had begun moving down the slope when the warships opened upon them, firing broadsides, the four or five shells from each ship bursting almost simultaneously on the seaward face of the hill. At the same time the Anzac batteries were heavily shelling the inland slope. With even more deadliness ten machine-guns of the NZ brigade, carefully posted about The Apex, caught the Turkish lines as they swept down toward The Farm.

Prior to this the diary (with a bit of editing) shows the following..

Embarked out of Avonmouth, Bristol with the 6th (Service) Battalion LNL, 38th Brigade and part of 13th (Western) Division on board the Braemar Castle on 15 June 1915 for Gallipoli. A,B,C & D companies contained 31 officers and 946 other ranks. Embarked Avonmouth at 4am lying in Avonmouth Bay on 16th moving to Walton Bay on 17th and leaving on 18th escorted by two destroyers at 7.00pm. Through the straits of Gibralter on 23rd docking in Malta on 26th June 1915. Left Malta on 27th arriving in Alexandria on 30th June. Left Alexandria on 2 July arriving at Mudros on 5th July 1915 moving to Cape Helles on 7th July and embarking into the “Eski Line”. 10th July 1915 to Geoghegaus Bluff where they stayed in the line until relieved on 14th July by 9th Worcesters and went back to the Eski Line.

16th July 1915 to Gully Beach where they stayed in the line until relieved on 28th July following which the Battalion was rested until 31st July. At 11.45pm on 31st they embarked for Lemnos.

1st August 1915 to 4th August 1915 at Mudros until embarking on 5th August for Osmanieh/Anzac and into tents at Victoria Gully.

7th August marched to Reserve Gully and bivouacked at Ghaliak Dere.

Cheers

Mark

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michaeldr

QUOTE (Phil_B @ Oct 16 2009, 04:45 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
That was a good thread! :)

Agreed; one of the best Phil

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JefR

Many thanks for your help everyone, especially Michael for the link to the Chunuk Bair thread and Mark for the history & diary extracts.

I've skimmed the thread - seemingly excellent contributions over a period Nov 2004 to Jan 2006 - but it will take me some time yet to digest the detail. It's a pity that the independent diary that Andy MacDonald claimed was written by a witness to the machine gunning of British troops by a New Zealand unit doesn't seem to have come to light in the three years since the claim was made.

In the meantime anyone researching the 6th Loyal North Lancs may find the following piece of ephemera of interest - it's remarkable that it survived.

Best regards

Jef

post-14846-1255819625.jpg

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whkay

Cheers for posting that Jef, great bit of history..

Thanks

Mark

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michaeldr

It's a pity that the independent diary that Andy MacDonald claimed was written by a witness to the machine gunning of British troops by a New Zealand unit doesn't seem to have come to light in the three years since the claim was made.

Agreed.

Andy still visits and posts on the GWF, so it is to be hoped that this renewed interest will catch his eye and that he can share with us whatever it is that he knows. Or if he is including it in a book he is writing, then tell us when we can expect publication etc.

... ... ... ... ...

A lovely piece of history you have found there - thanks for that

Best regards

Michael

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Guest RichardGJ
On 16 October 2009 at 11:31, PhilB said:

The 6th Loyals were overwhelmed by a Turkish attack on the 9th. 494 casualties including 11 officers and 211 men killed. I have a trio and plaque to CSM James Brown from Manchester killed that day (NKG Helles Memorial). I`d appreciate any further information about him.

As there were 445 missing (before final figures were reached) and the battalion looks to have been withdrawn on the day (and Sgt Leonard has NKG) I`d assume, without further evidence, that he was missing on the 9th & assumed dead on the 13th.

 

PhilB

 

CSM James Brown 3566 was my great grandfather. Can you make contact with me?

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