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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

4th Lincolns at Souchez


zippy.72

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Can anyone shed any light on where the 4th Lincolns were on 19th April 1916? I believe they were in Souchez area where a mine was exploded.

Tim

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On the 17th, the 4th and 2/5th battalions were, owing to the heavycasualties they had sustained, formed into a composite battalion, and took up position south of Locre, where they were heavily shelled on that day and on the 18th. On the 5th May both battlions were were reduced to training cadres.

Steve.

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Steve,

You are getting mixed up, that was 1918. The 1/4th were in the Souchez area in April '16.

Tim,

My interest is the 1/5th Lincolns, who were in the same brigade. I shall let Jim Davies (fellow forum member) know about your post, he is a 4th Lincs man. I will try to find some details out for you tomorrow. There was a lot of mining and counter-mining going on at the time.

Below is a recent picture of Zouaves Valley where the Brigade were involved in constructing new dugouts while out of the line during that April in 1916.

Regards,

Steve.

post-1168-1128635180.jpg

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Tim,

Still digging on Clapham's MM?

Since your last thread, I had a chance to look at the 4th's diary, didn't have time to make detailed notes.

There might have been more to the entry, but this is what I have.

19th April:

"Mine exploded No 15 CT at 10:30pm"

and...

20th April:

"Enemy blew mine under front line at (6:30 yesterday) and then shelled position. 2nd Lt Wright and 15 OR buired 8 feet or more".

Jim

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Tim

Early March the 46th Division relieved French troops in the sector south of Souchez. On the 14th the 4th Btn (rotating with the 5th Btn) went into the front line trenches near Villers-au-Bois. On the 20th April a mine was blown....and as stated in previous post 1 Officer and 15 Other ranks were killed.

Information taken from the History of the Lincolnshire Regiment.

Regards Doug.

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Tim

As the above pals have said the 138th Brigade were in the Souchez area at the time, the days around 19th April saw a series of mines blown, and it must have been very unpleasant indeed. The British communication trenches with names such as International and Central went across the Zouave Valley (as in Steves pic) up onto the top of the ridge to the frontlines, this to the best of my knowledge is land now best dominated by the motorway that cuts the Zouave Valley from the Canadian Park at Vimy. The incident is mentioned, albeit very briefly in the Vimy Ridge book in the Battleground Europe Series, and also contains some maps of the area.

Chris

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Yes your right that is 1918........I was in a rush. Now for the extract from the 1/4 Regimental History by Tweed:

After Suez Duty.......

The Battalion Disembarked at Marseilles on the 9th February and after several moves, went into the line south of Souchez. The contrast in climate between the Western Front and the desert was intensified by the fact that some of the men, thinking they had gone to Egypt "for the duration", had "flogged" their underclothing, and heavy snow added to their discomfort. A period in the front line was followed by employment on working parties. Private J. Cade was wounded 12th April.

The history then jumps to the 1st July 1916.......but this does give us a good indication of conditions and what the battalions duties were.

All Martin Middlebrook has to say on the subject in his his history is concerning the North Midland Battalions is:

The next few months were spent in trenches on Vimy Ridge. ??????

Steve.

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Many thanks for your replies. When I am next in Lincoln, I will look at 4th Bat's diary at Lincs Life Museum. If any of you would like to get in touch about 4th Lincolns generally, plaese e-mail me at tim.priestley@ntlworld.com

Thanks again

Tim

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Hi Tim,

May I ask what your interest in the 4th Battalion is?

Three of my relatives served with the Battalion and my Grandfathers knew many other men who served as they worked at Rustons. The two that served during WW1 never came back. My Grandafther who is still alive is the oldest member of the 4th Battalion, he enlisted in 1932.

After the cock up at the Redoubt many of the battalions best men were wounded, dead or had just had enough and transfered away to other regiments. Even the old Regimental Sergeant Major Shepherd left and found a cushy number with the 1/4th Leicestershires. My relative switched to the 1st Battalion Lincolns.

After the event the Battalion wasnt trusted to do much because of the mistakes they had made......hence in this instance it mentions working parties. During the redoubt the wrong fuses were brought up so they couldnt use their grenades.......its mistakes like that that didnt gain them any points with top brass. It wasnt until after retraining that they were involved once again in the later stages of the war.

Steve.

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