20TH (Light) Division Operations. Instructions No 7. 18 November 1917

G.O.C.
SECRET.
Copy No. 1
20 DNG67
SECRET.
20TH (LIGHT) DIVISION OPERATIONS. INSTRUCTIONS NO 7.
3RD STAGE.

1. As soon as the 29th Div. has captured the MASNIERES – BEAUREVOIR line, East and North of MASNIERES, its right flank, held by the 88th Inf. Bde., will rest on the Canal about G.27.c.4.8.
The 59th Inf. Bde. will push forward its left flank to get into touch with the right of the 29th Div. on the Canal at the above mentioned place.

2. In order to carry out the 3rd Stage as early as possible, it is essential that every advantage be taken of any demoralization of the enemy which may occur during the 1st and 2nd Stages to push forward Advanced Guards boldly.
It is also important that the original breach be widened as soon as possible towards both flanks by turning and operating against the flanks of the hostile troops holding the line of defence.

3. The Lucknow Cav. Bde., under the orders of G.O.C. III Corps, will be raiding Southwards in the direction of WALINCOURT for the purpose of widening the original breach.

4. In pursuance of the above object future action will be as follows:-
(a) The 29th Div. will, when they have secured the ground mentioned in para. 1 and the detachment mentioned in para. 3 have passed through, push out and hold the edge of the spur in G.23.c. & d., sending Tanks, supported by infantry, into CREVECOEUR to clear the village and seize the crossings.
(b) The 59th Inf. Bde. will move forward 2 Bns simultaneously with the advance of the 29th Div., and establish a line on the BONAVIS – CREVECOEUR ridge overlooking the LES RUES DES VIGNES, and extend this line to about G.35.a.1.9., where the right of the 29th Div. will rest. The remaining 2 Bns will move up in close support.
This line is to be at once consolidated.
On relief of the 2 Troops 1/1 Northumberland Yeo by the infantry on this position, the Cavalry will withdraw and remain with the 59th Inf. Bde. H.Q. until further orders.
(c) The 61st Inf. Bde will move to the vicinity of LES RUES VETRES, G.26. in support of the advance of the 29th Div., keeping South of the Canal.
(d) The 60th Inf. Bde. will move to about L.35.b. & d. in support of the above dispositions.

5. The action outlined above is dependent upon the course of the battle, but it is intended if possible to carry out these moves on the afternoon of ‘Z’ day, and if that is not possible, to push on at dawn on Z+1 day.

6. In order not to interfere with the rapid exploitation of successes, artillery action against the following places will cease on the hours detailed below:-
LES RUES DES VIGNES – Z plus 360
CREVECOEUR – Z plus 320
MASNIERES – Z plus 250
MARCOING – Z plus 235
Any bombardment by heavy artillery of these places after the above hours will only be carried out at the request of the Divisions concerned.
7. The further action of our troops, which is intended to set free the Cavalry for active work in a North-easterly direction, and which will take place on Z+1 day, can be outlined as follows:-
(a) At 6.15 a.m., the 61st Bde. will advance and take over the front of the 29th Div. between the Canal and H.19.a.; the point of junction between 29th Div and 61st Inf. Bde. will be on the track in H.19.a.
(b) The 60th Inf. Bde. will move into Div. Reserve at LES RUES VERTES, G.26. and be prepared to support either Bde.

8. In order to render the flank more secure, it is proposed, on ‘Z’ night, to destroy the bridges at LES RUES DES VIGNES and BANTEUX. The destruction of the bridges at LES RUES DES VIGNES will be undertaken by the 20th Div and at BANTEUX by the 12th Div.
It is also intended to clear the enemy with Tanks from the Western bank of the Canal between BANTEUX and CREVECOEUR.
The 59th Inf. Bde. will co-operate with the 12th Div in carrying out these operations, which will form the subject of subsequent orders.

9. The boundary between the 12th Div. and the 59th Inf. Bde. on the BONAVIS – CREVECOEUR spur will run from M.3.c.0.6. to the Canal at M.10.a.5.3.

ACKNOWLEDGE.

T. McN. Haskard
Lieut. Col.
General Staff, 20th Division.
18th Nov, 1917.
Copies to:-
No. 1. G.O.C.
2. “G”
3.”A”
4. 59th Inf. Bde.
5. 60th Inf. Bde.
6. 61st Inf. Bde.
7. B.G., R.A.
8. C.R.E.
9. Div. Signals.
10. A.D.M.S.
11.) 12.) 3rd Bde. Tank Corps.
13.)
14. III Corps.
15. III Corps R.A,.
16. 6th Div.
17. 12th Div.
18. 29th Div.
19. 59th Sqdn R.F.C.
20. III Corps Cavalry.
21. Lieut. The Hon. C.F.N. RAMSAY 1/1 Northumberland Yeo.
22. D.M.G.O.
23. War Diary.
24. File.

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