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Remembered Today:

Highland Light Infantry


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Deemed to have enlisted on his eighteenth birthday, mobilised shortly afterwards, posted to the Training Reserve 

https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/regiments-and-corps/training-reserve/training-reserve-remodelled-in-1917/

(Probably 54thTR)

 

In a draft posted to France from the 201st Graduated Battalion HLI (51st Graduated Bn)

https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/regiments-and-corps/the-british-infantry-regiments-of-1914-1918/highland-light-infantry/

 

On arrival at the Infantry Base Depot at Etaples on the 29th November they were posted to the 14th Bn as replacement for the heavy losses at Cambrai (Bourlon Wood).  The war diary notes 426 casualties in November. They joined the Battalion in the field on various dates between the 4th -  8th December.  The war diary rounds up drafts at the end of the month and shows 224 reinforcements joined in December 1917, he was among this cohort.

 

(If Tom posts the December diary you will have covered his brutally short service in France - a victim of attritional trench warfare)

 

The Divisional History records this period as, “the weariness and discomfort of a winter in the trenches’ punctuated by the Daily bombardment from both sides and the occasional raid.

 

 

 

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Tom Lang
1 hour ago, kenf48 said:

<snip>

 

(If Tom posts the December diary you will have covered his brutally short service in France - a victim of attritional trench warfare)

 

The Divisional History records this period as, “the weariness and discomfort of a winter in the trenches’ punctuated by the Daily bombardment from both sides and the occasional raid.

 

 

 

As kenf48 suggests, here are snippets taken from my transcription of the War Diary for December, 1917.

I have included my list of casualties recorded at the CWGC.

(On a personal note, this list includes Captain William Alexander Gibb STEVENSON, who was taken prisoner at Bourlon Village, and died of his wounds as a POW in a German hospital. Captain STEVENSON was the Company Commander, 'B' Coy, when my grandfather was KIA on 24th April, 1917. I have visited this officer's grave at Valenciennes (St Roch) Community Cemetery, and left a couple of poppy crosses. Lest We Forget!).

 

Tom.

14th HLI - WD 1917 12 p01 snippet.jpg

14th HLI - WD 1917 12 p02 snippet.jpg

14th HLI - WD 1917 12 p03 snippet.jpg

14th HLI - WD 1917 12 p04 snippet.jpg

14th HLI - WD 1917 12 p05 snippet.jpg

14th HLI - WD 1917 12 p06 snippet.jpg

Captain William Alexander Gibb Stevenson - Photo.PNG

IMG_0628.JPG

Edited by Tom Lang
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Gordon Bannerman

Wonderful content: that you so much for the context and the detail. I guess this period was just before the March offensive, and the description you provide is depressingly familiar. 

Thank you so much for taking the time to provide these details. 

Wonderful photos and superb gesture regarding Captain Stevenson. 

I've used some of the documentation to send in a correction to the CWGC about his Service No.

Lest We Forget 

 

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Tom Lang
9 hours ago, Gordon Bannerman said:

<snip>

I've used some of the documentation to send in a correction to the CWGC about his Service No.

Lest We Forget 

 

You should draw their attention to his full name as shown in the documents, especially the Medal Roll.

At present the CWGC only show his initials.

If you have proof of his birth, you should also send this to show his age when he died. They will also record his age - with the appropriate proof.

You can show the connection with his birth record and the Soldier's Effects record to his mother Margaret.

Best of luck.

Tom.

Edited by Tom Lang
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Gordon Bannerman

Many thanks for the guidance Tom: it is really very good of you to take the time to help with your great expertise.

 

I have a subscription to Scotland's People so I'll get his birthdate as you suggest. I know he was aged 12 in 1911 from the 1911 Census data but will get his birth certificate for the precise date.

 

I currently have his Memorial Plaque which was passed to me by my father. In due course, that will go to my daughter. 

 

Thank you Tom. 

 

Best regards, 

 

Gordon

    

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