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War Diary - 1/4th Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment Apr 18

Blue Dragoon

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I'm searching on Ancestry with no luck to try and find the War Diary of the 1/4th Battalion the Lincolnshire Regiment post 31.01.1918 when they absorbed the 2/4th Battalion to form what I believe was the new 4th Bn (or was it still 1/4th Bn?) who were part of the 177th Brigade of the 59th Division.  I'm particularly interested in entries for the actions by the Bn/Bde at the Battle of Bailleul 15 Apr 18 where my first cousin 46709 Pte Reginald Arthur Manley was killed. 


I've got the 2/4th Bn war diary up to the date of their disbandment in Jan 18.




Page 327


Any ancestry links to either the 1/4th or 177th Bde HQ war diaries for the period before 15 Apr 18 would be greatly appreciated (if these diaries exist)


Many thanks



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The amalgamated 4 Battalion appears to have been in 118 Infantry Brigade.  The diary can be found here on Discovery http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C7354229 reference WO 95/2590/4 - the piece part, ie 2590, should help you find it on Ancestry.

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1/4th appear to have taken a bit of a kicking during Op MICHAEL and end up as a cadre attached to 117, 118 and it looks like eventually 116th Bde by the time of their own disbandment at the end of the war.  Their WD doesnt appear to be available on ancestry so thanks for the NA link


from LLT


8 May 1918 : reduced to cadre strength after suffering heavy casualties.
2 June 1918 : transferred to 49th Brigade, 16th Division.
17 June 1918 : transferred to 102nd Brigade, 34th Division.
27 June 1918 : transferred to 117th Brigade, 39th Division.
27 July 1918 : transferred to 118th Brigade in same Division.
28 September 1918 : transferred to 116th Brigade in same Division.
8 November 1918 : disbanded in France.

Edited by Blue Dragoon
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The diary should definitely be on Ancestry, it's part of the set they purchased.

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Sadly I couldn't find it despite searching under all the Bdes they were in.  Anyway for £3.50 I've got what I want. Here's the transcription of the Battle of Bailleul.  They were clearly hard pressed but I find it amazing they returned to the same billet huts after the battle.


1/4th Battalion Lincolnshire Regiment War Diary for period of Battle of Bailleul

14/15 April 1918

In memory of 49709 Private Reginald Arthur Manley

14 April 1918

At 2.10 am - We received orders to move at once to a point between WESTOUTRE and LOCRE

Passing through BERTHEN and WESTOUTRE we moved into assembly positions in LOCRE about M. 22.b. at 6 am, where breakfasts were taken.  At 10.30 am we moved forward into huts beside LOCRE – DRANOUTRE road just north of LOCREHOF FARM from when selected officers reconnoitred the reserve line infront of DRANOUTRE.

At 3 pm the Battalion was ordered to relieve the 102 Brigade in the front line from FEUTAR FARM in S.23.d to CRUCIFIX CORNER in S.18.a.

Owing to the enemy attack developing on this front during the afternoon it was impossible to reconnoitre the line and the Battalion moved forward across country to 102 Brigade HQs at S.4.d.48 at 10.30 pm after having a detachment of MGs attached to them.

The Commanding Officer, who had a high temperature and was unwell, was sent back to the Transport Lines by the Medical Officer and Major RN Holmes assumed command of the Battalion.

The Battalion relieved the whole 102 Brigade.  A Company on the right, relieving the 1st Bn EAST LANCS, B Coy in the centre, the 10th Bn LINCS REGT, and C Coy on the left the 9th Bn NFs, D Coy in reserve being behind CRUCIFIX HILL.

It was a difficult relief owing to the dark and the fact that the line had only the day previously been constituted and had been dug in in the dark.  The relief was complete by 6.30 am

15 April 1918

The whole of the forward line was down the forward slope of the ridge and under observation from the enemy.  Any reconstruction by daylight in the method of holding the line was out of the question.

Battalion HQ which while relief was taking place remained at the 102 Brigade HQ moved to a farm at S.17.a.5.3 at 7 am

12 noon – An enemy bombardment opened up along the whole front it being particularly heavy on CRUCIFIX CORNER

2pm – A very heavy barrage broke out all along the line

2.45 pm – A local attack developed against CRUCIFIX CORNER the enemy obtaining a footing in our line.  The counter attacking platoon of the left  company immediately driving him out.

3 pm – The enemy continued to attack CRUCIFIX CORNER twice reaching the high ground in that vicinity.

The reserve company which had sustained heavy casualties in the shelling and the forward companies drove him back on both occassions inflicting severe losses.  On each occasion that the enemy was forced to withdraw two red lights were sent up from about S.18.d.0.5. and the enemy barrage  immediately shortened to CRUCIFIX CORNER

3.45 pm – The whole line held by the Battalion was intact.  The enemy however continued to attempt to take and hold CRUCIFIX HILL.

Shortly this the enemy commenced to attack against the whole front but was held up on the right by shell and Lewis Gun fire.

4.40 pm – Owing to the troops on the left giving way the enemy broke through and captured the crest of CRUCIFIX HILL from the Eastern side.

From this point of vantage he dominated the whole of our positions and them untenable by means of heavy machine gun fire.  The enemy quickly pushed along to S.17 central and under continuous machine gun fire we formed a defensive flank from the left of our right company who were in touch with 5 Bn LINCS REGT to S.17.a.1.5.

5.25 pm – The line from S.16.b to S17.a came under such heavy machine gun fire from the front and left, that it had to be withdrawn to RAILWAY CUTTING where a company of 4th LEICESTERS found the Battalion.

5.45pm – The enemy forced his way through the right of our line which held on to the end, fighting hand to hand, till overwhelmed.  ?ouch was obtained from the left of the RAILWAY CUTTING line

S?c4.5. with a company of 4th LEICESTERS holding a line just east.

6.15pm – The RAILWAY CUTTING came under a heavy enfilade MG fire and also heavy shelling, which necessitated a further withdrawal.  This was carried out in good order, and a line was dug from S.10.d.8.8 to S.11.c.3.7. with a reserve along the road from S.10.d.98.90. to S.11.c.40.95.  Bn HQ was established in the farm at S.11.c.20.99. 

7.30pm – Troops of the 34th Division came up with orders to take over and reorganise the line.  We assisted in this occupation and at 10 pm the order was received to withdraw and return to our previous huts in LOCRE.  The withdrawal was carried out through the 34th Divisional troops and the Battalion was in billets by 2.30am

Owing to the weakness of the Battalion it was decided to re-organise on the basis of 2 companies.  A+B Coys amalgamated as W Company under Capt AH Clark and C+D Coys as X Company under Lieut RJW Andrews

Our casualties were:


Killed:             2Lt GW Pacey             2Lt HL Hubble

Wounded:      Capt RB Wilmshurst   Capt AE Stephenson  Capt G Fleming (RAMC)

                        2Lt W Phypers            2Lt GS Lakeman        2Lt SR Slidel   2Lt LE Squirrel

                        2Lt ER Beechcroft

Missing:         2Lt CE Blamers

ORs:               Killed                          Wounded                   Missing

                        18                                120                              170





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  • 3 months later...



The 1/4th Battalion was disbanded on 31/1/18 as part of the Brigade reforms (4 batt’ to 3 batt’). The remaining men were divided among the 2/4th, 1/5th and 2/5th. The 2/4th was then known as the 4th Battalion.


Those who were transformed to the 1/5th remained in the 46th Division, the others went to the 59th Division,



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