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South of the Somme


Tom Tulloch-Marshall

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When were British troops first stationed (in meaningful numbers) in the front line south of the river Somme ?

Tom

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Spring 1917, if my guess is correct....an extension of the British front to the south of the Somme being part of the preparation for Nivelle's offensive.

Phil (PJA)

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Spring 1917, if my guess is correct....

Anybody going to suggest a division / month ?

Tom

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Tom

Have you looked in Edmonds? 1917 volume I should cover it.

Ron

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March 1917 sounds about right, but the OH Vol 2 1917 page 360 or 404/570 CD-ROM says

Disk crashed before could get date (it does that a lot) :angry2: but I think this is July 1917?

" In addition to the departure of these five divisions of the Fourth Army in the coastal sector, relieved by the French, were by arrangement between the two Governments, to take over 40 miles of the French front on the British right, south of the Somme, and, therefore, were lost to the British Offensive effort. (This was the front attacked by the Germans on 21st March 1918) "
Have seen a newspaper report that mentions British troops south of the Somme in March 1917, and it mentioned that this had been common knowledge some time.
Mike
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South of the Somme


The Long British Line


(From the Press Association Special Correspondent)


War Correspondents' Headquarters, France, Sunday.


" The statement in last night's communique that the enemy had rushed two of our positions north-west of Roye is tantamount to an official landmark in connection with the extension of our line south of the Somme. That we had crossed the river and "side-slipped" into positions heretofore held by the French Army has of course been a matter of common knowledge for a considerable time past. How far this "side-slipping" has been carried or how much further it may be in contemplation to carry it the time is not yet to indicate. The presence of British troops opposite Peronne and Chaulnes has been already referred to by French writers. But Roye lies well below the latter place nor am I prepared to say that this marks the present spot of our southern liaison with our gallant ally. etc etc There's quite a bit more in this article that might be of interest? "


There are two casualties in Roye New British Cemetery 2/3/1917


001 FOX AW 241399 1ST/5TH BN 02/03/1917 YORKSHIRE REGIMENT

002 HUDSON F 241655 1ST/5TH BN 02/03/1917 YORKSHIRE REGIMENT



Mike

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001 FOX AW 241399 1ST/5TH BN 02/03/1917 YORKSHIRE REGIMENT

002 HUDSON F 241655 1ST/5TH BN 02/03/1917 YORKSHIRE REGIMENT

1/5th Bn Yorks were 150th Bde 50th Div as of early 1917. Looks like the way to resolve this may be via Army disposition maps at TNA (when I get a chance to go in, which I can't just at the moment) - Anybody know which Army 5th Div were serving with late 1916 - early 1917 ?

Tom

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35th division was also there from March 1917.

Mark

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Not sure which Army Tom. This seems to have been a temporary move Feb-March.

The 4th Battn Yorkshire Regt Diary appears where the 5th should be?
9/2/1917 Buire-Morcourt
10/2/1917 Foucaucourt
11/2/1917 Genermont? "relieve parties of the 218 & 18 Regt (French)
15/2/1917 Foucaccourt
19/2/1917 Proyart
26/2/1917 Triangle Wood (Punchy?)
27/2/1917 (on night of 27/28) relieved 6th Northumberland Fusiliers
9/3/1917 Bayonvillers
30/3/1917 Battn left Bayonvillers & marched to Bonnay, the first stage of a journey to Arras area where the Division was to join the XVIII Corps.
Mike
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... Edmonds? ... 1917 volume I should cover it.

Ron - I had a look at the preliminaries but it seemed to be discussing principle rather than detail. IVth Army was moving south towards Peronne mid Dec 1916 so I suppose I'll start there with the Army disposition maps.

Not sure which Army Tom. This seems to have been a temporary move Feb-March. ....

Mike - yes those months are looking favourite. I'll confirm what I find in the disposition records (might take a couple of weeks though).

Tom

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