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Remembered Today:

Some Desperate Glory


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Hello everyone,


I have been reading 'Some Desperate Glory' by Edwin Campion Vaughan and I have been researching two aspects of his time at Biaches.


Noted in his book under on Thursday 18th January 1917 he notes that "Two new arrivals - officers attached from the 7th Worcesters - today joined our company. Their names are Watkins and Thomas and my first impression of them was quite favourable". These officers appear to be 2nd Lieutenant Turner and 2nd Lieutenant Watkins from The 1/8th Battalion, The Worcester Regiment who actually joined the battalion on Thursday 25th January 1917. It is noted in the battalion war diary that 2nd Lieutenant E.S. Vaughan joined the battalion on Wednesday 16th January 1917 (which seems to be correct when comparing this to his book).


The first aspect that I have been researching is his approximate journey to the front line whilst on a working party.


On Saturday 3rd February 1917, Vaughan states;“At 6 p.m. Thomas and I set out with the company to carry the rations up to the line. This time we went straight up the road leading through Herbecourt. We had passed through the village and were descending the further slope, where all was dead quiet and peaceful, so that as I walked beside Thomas I had no qualms of fear, when he said in a low voice, ‘if they start shelling, we will have to split u. You take the front two platoons onto the fields on the right and I will take the remainder onto the left’”. 


The second thing I have been researching is his first tour of duty of the front line in Biaches.


Vaughan later describes his first experience of visiting the posts on Wednesday 14th February 1917 “The night was perfectly quiet, and we picked our squelchy way after Bell along the trench to the right. After ten or twelve yards we turned to the right, ducking under a trench board, and came to the first post. Here, with his head above the parapet, stood private Newey, perfectly motionless. He answered out whispered questions without turning his head, and we stood beside him for a few moments peering into the darkness. Nothing could be seen or heard and we stepped down and talked to Corporal Bobby Wood who was in charge of the post. He showed us his shelter, a bare hole scooped out of the side of the trench; his six men were in a tiny shelter on one side”. 


“Leaving them to their watch we passed on to the Lewis gun post some dozen yeads away. Here Corporal McKay, who was smoking his little pipe upside down, greeted us very cheerily and seemed quite happy. His gun was pushed forward down a little sap, along which we crept quietly to where the gunners were lying face downwards under a belt of wire, with their eyes glued on the faint outline of the ground in front. We could not talk so we returned to the trench”. 


“The remainder of the line was very irregular and the posts seemed to be firing in different directions. At the end of our sector on the left, a communication trench ran back to the rear, and a little way down was a nice big shelter in which Sergeant Allsop and one of two men of 14 platoon were sleeping. Close to our third post were two trees, one of which stripped and shattered by a shell, was still standing; the other was cut in half and hung down across the trench like an arch. Under this ran a shallow trench which was a short cut back to our HQ. This trench we took, walking in the open for nearly 50 years, which I though a highly dangerous proceeding”.


I was wondering if anyone would be able to help me plot his approimate routes using the map which I have attached below?


Best Wishes,


Micah Dominic Parsons


Edited by MicahDominicParsons
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