Thursday, 5 April 2018

Friday 5th April 1918

As we continue to "mark time" here in France, waiting for the enemy's next move, your correspondent spent a little time this evening with 6th Battalion at Couin. The adjutant tersely described the last few days as "a bad time in the line" at Bucquoy. From five until nine this morning the rear areas were heavily shelled, killing a cook, wounding a mule and wrecking a mobile cooker. One officer and twenty seven other ranks have been badly affected by gas whilst in the line at Bucquoy and one man has died a horrible death from the effects of this vile gas.

The 7th Battalion is now in billets but moved up again during the day to support 6th Battalion, Northamptonshire Regiment at Gentelles. Again, they were not needed, returning to their billets this evening, where, we heard a few minutes ago, they have been promptly shelled.

Lieutenant-General Sir Herbert Watts, General Officer Commanding XIX Corps, has sent the following message to 18th Division, of which the 7th Bedfords for a part: "Please accept on your behalf and that of all ranks of the 18th Division my heartiest congratulations on the splendid work done by the Division since joining the Nineteenth Corps. The results achieved by the fine fighting spirit and powers of endurance displayed have been of the greatest importance and I am most grateful to all concerned:

Sources: X550/7/1; X550/8/1

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