Friday 26 September 2014

1st Bedfords in the Front Line

Saturday 26th September 1914: Our contact with the 1st Battalion in France reports: “During the night we heard several shots and once a tremendous yowling in front out in the open. It was some German who had been prowling about in front and who had been shot by his own side. So we fired in the direction of the yowls and evidently gave him his quietus as the yowling stopped”.

“The usual sniping continued on both sides and we could see the enemy plainly in front and had to observe especial caution going backwards and forwards through the wood. During the night we had erected some screens so as to cover our movements as much as possible.

“When the sniping got very bad we told the gunners and they plastered the enemy trenches with Lyddite[1] and shrapnel and we watched the effect with great joy. The shells burst only two hundred yards in front of us and it was most interesting to see it. It effectually stopped the sniping and we called out to the Germans that if they did it again we would tell the guns and put the lid on them! We then have had peace from them for the rest of the day!”

Sources: X550/2/7

[1] A form of high explosive using picric acid developed at Lydd in Kent, hence the name

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