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Remembered Today:

Battle of Messines 1917


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I am researching the build up and assault by the New Zealand troops on the village of Messines during the opening hours of 3rd battle of Ypres.

Does anyone know of a written history of the NZ troops involved. In particular I am looking for more deatils of the VC won by Lance Corporal (later Captain) Samuel Frickleton of the 3rd Bn, 3rd N.Z (Rifle) Brigade, N.Z.E.F

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Delta,

A great book on the Messines Offensive, is Pillars of Fire, by Ian Passingham. I use it a lot whilst travelling around the Messines area. Another book to recommend is the history of the 25 (NZ) Division available from the Naval and Military Press.

Also, The Battle Ground Europe book covering Messines Ridge by Peter Oldham, Pen and Sword Books Ltd, covers the account of Frickleton winning his VC on Page 84 and 85. Hope this helps.

Iain

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In 'The New Zealand Division 1916-19', the author writes:

' The 3rd Battalion... came under intense fire from a well posted machine gun on the edge of Messines. L-Cpl Samuel Frickleton, although already slightly wounded, called on his section to follow him and dashed through our barrage with his men. Flinging his bombs at the gun crew, he rushed and bayoneted the survivors and then, still working within our barrage with the utmost sang-froid, attacked a second gun some 20 yds away. He killed the 3 men serving the gun and then destroyed the remainder of the crew and others, numbering in all 9, who still in the dugout. The infantry at once swept on to the trench.'

This book, now republished by Naval and Military Press, gives a detailed account of the New Zealanders involvement at Messines.

Robert

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  • 2 weeks later...

:D

Many thanks for this most useful info; looks like I have some good books to read

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Make sure you get the paperbook not the hard copy version of the New Zealand Division history. It will save you few hard-earned NZ dollars ;)

Robert

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