Wednesday 15 August 2018

The Attack Slows as a New One is Planned?

Thursday 15th August 1918

Last night B and C Companies, 2nd Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment, relieved the 11th Royal Fusiliers in the front line. This evening they are due to be relieve 6th Battalion, Northamptonshire Regiment in the adjoining part of the line as the Fusiliers again move into their former positions. All this suggests that the divisional commander, Major General Lee, is arranging his assets carefully as he prepares to attack. 

In point of fact the attack which began so successfully on 8th August has just about run out of steam. This was expected. New defences have to be established against any enemy counter-attack, reserves and artillery have to be brought up, guns have to be dug in and registered on new targets. The air of bustle in the army suggests that a new attack will begin soon, an attack which will surely include an attempt to retake Albert. 

The battalion has lost a dozen experienced non-commissioned officers during the day as company sergeant majors, company quartermaster sergeants and sergeants have moved to base as supernumerary to establishment, in other words, there are enough of them in the battalion and they will be reassigned to a unit or units lacking in such experience.This situation has arisen due to the combination of the 7th and 2nd Battalions back in May as both battalions were well-equipped with NCOs, no doubt a reason for their excellent conduct during the retreat in March and April before the German assault.

Sources: X550/3/wd

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