Sunday 8 May 2016

Under Bombardment

Monday 8th May 1916: The adjutant of the 1st Battalion, in the front line near Arras, tells us that yesterday: “At 3 p.m. the enemy started a heavy bombardment of our front line, keeping it up, intermittently heavy to fairly heavy, from 4.30 to 5.30 when it became intense and ceased at 6 p.m. Our artillery retaliated. It was thought that enemy were retaliating on our mine heads in return for 2 shoots on their mineheads and the camouflets(1) we blew. Probably all these had done his mines harm. The New Zealand Engineers Tunnelling Company has been working this sector for the last month or two”.

The Battalion suffered eight casualties, all very slightly wounded. The adjutant reported: “All ranks very steady and cheery. Congratulatory messages from Brigadier and Commanding Officer sent round the Battalion”.

Source: X550/2/5

(1) Charges intended to collapse enemy mine shafts. 

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