Norman Richardson 27 November 1916

ARMY BOOK 152
CORRESPONDENCE BOOK
(FIELD SERVICE)
Opened on Nov. 1st 1916.
Started Intelligence Nov 21st 1916.
Norman Richardson
2nd Lieut S.O.
DECK
SIGNAL SECTION.
27/11/16.
Maps Handed over to BOW.
1. Large Paper map. GOMMECOURT 2 B.
2. Large oilskin 1/2500.
3. 56 & 43 Aeroplane Photos
8.L.1258 “ “
4. Left Sub-sector Trench Map 1/5,000 (Paper)
5. Do 1/5,000 2 (Paper)
6. Do 1/5,000 (Linen)
7. Artillery Map
8. 1 Kite Balloon Map 11 M 186.
WJ Warner 2/Lt
KEEL.
———————————-
Patrol Report (Summaries)
26/27/11/16.
No Compn Time of Place of Object RESULTS
Exit Entry Exit Entry
1 1 Off + 4 men 6.10 pm 8.20 pm At advance front top of YOUNG ST. Do To examine enemy wire near K.3.d.4.6. 1 Found gap about point K.3.d.40.50. This gap was three yards wide, and completely through the wire. The wire was thin on each side of it.2 A German heard (& later seen) get out of a sap 30x N of this gap & march S.W.
3 Not much wire in front of S.W. corner of wood.

2 1 Sgt + 4 men
? ? At disused trench N of advanced Sap MOUSETRAP
K.3.d.30.60. Do To examine wire along N.W. side of GOMMECOURT PARK for 100 yards. 1 Observed Bosche covering party (10) at about K.3.d.50.70.
Note: mist became very heavy & party withdrew.
N. Richardson
2/Lt.
I.O.
DECK
———————————-

DECK
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.
From 6 pm, 26/11/16 till 6 am, 27/11/16
OPERATIONS.
Enemy Artillery: Intermittent shelling of HEBUTERNE during the night.
At 8.10 pm, 8.30 pm and from 9.0 to 9.10 pm shells (5.9s & 4.2s) were put over near to the pond and the Aid Post at the entrance to the village.
At 10 pm about 12 rounds 77 mm were fired on ‘R’ line. No damage was done.
Own Artillery: A slow steady rate of firing was kept up with salvoes at intervals.
Enemy T.Ms: Active again.
At 4 pm yesterday the enemy opened out on to our lines with about 50 L.T.Ms.
About 9 pm he commenced again on the left & on the right.
All sizes were used, but no damage was done & the majority fell short.
At 4.0 pm yesterday, he appeared to be firing from K.4.b.10.15.
At 9.0 pm the Bosche seemed to take advantage of the mist for firing his T.Ms.
Enemy M.Gs: One M.G. kept traversing out parapets on the left at intervals. On the whole very quiet. There were bursts over the village at 6.5 and 6.10 am.
Our M.Gs: fairly active.

INTELLIGENCE.
See Patrol Reports (enclosed)
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK
———————————-
DECK. 26/11/16
REPORTS on WIRE.
A. In front of ‘C’ line.
1. The only wire is round the posts at the head of YUSSIF and the head of YOUNG ST.
2. Between these two posts there has originally been a little wire but now a clear gap, which stretches almost from post to post, has been blown, and absolutely affords no obstacles at all.
3. The wire in front of the posts is not too strong and in places at the YUSSIF post the enemy could bomb the post from the wire.
Note: A complete new system of wire is required in front of ‘C’ line. It requires putting out beyond the present wire so as to place the posts out of bombing distance.
B. Wire between ‘C’ & ‘R’ Lines.
1. The main wire is about 30 yards in front of ‘R’ trench & attached to stout wooden pickets. The wire is in fairly good condition but in places has been blown up by shell fire. The ground between the latter wire and ‘R’ line is full of shell holes and seems to have been laid with cross “trip” wire on short pickets but owing to shell fire this has been badly mangled, the broken places having been filled in with barbed concertinas. This wiring comes to within 4 yards of ‘R’ line.
2. From YUSSIF Tr to MG2 the wire is very thin.
Illustration
From MG2 the wire stretches to within 20 yards of YOUNG ST, and is old, straggling, fairly good and wide. The remainder is very poor. There are no definite gaps apparent. No concertinas or gooseberries were noticed.
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
————————-

DECK. 27/11/16
REPORTS on Wire.
{ A. Forward of ‘C’ Line.

{B. Between ‘C’ and ‘R’ Line.

A. Forward of ‘C’ Line. In front of Left Front Co. the wire is very good; that of the Right Front Co. is not so good, but here there are stretches of entanglements and wire, old but forming effective obstacles over 100 yds into No Man’s Land.
(a) Right Front Co.
1. Patrol Report of 25/11/16. Place of exit was Left Advanced Post from YOUNG ST. “On our return journey we entered our wire about 50 yards West of the wire fence. The wire was chiefly French wire and little barbed wire was encountered. We struck the wire fence about 30 yards from its junction with ‘Z’ Hedge.”
2. Patrol Report 24/11/16. Place of exit was junction of YOUNG ST & ‘C’ LINE K.3.d.2.9. “The outer edge of our wire is about 100 yards from our parapet”—-“ We left our lines at K.3.d.2.9. and proceeded along the wooden fence which runs out in a N.E. direction. We went about 100 yards along this, the going was fairly easy and we walked all the way. The wire on the fence is still standing. On the left hand side of the fence, very little of our wire is left. On the right the wire is much broken but would form a difficult obstacle.
3. There is fairly good wire round the posts at the head of YUSSIF and also of YOUNG ST.
4. Between these two posts there has originally been a little wire but much of it has been blown away & does not afford much of an obstacle at all.
5. The wire at the YUSSIF post is within bombing range.

(b) Left Front Co. [from YUSSIF to SAP]
1. From YUSSIF to YUZ. – Good; 20 ft wide.
2. From YUZ to SAP – On the whole good; about 20 ft wide.
3. Opposite the end of YUZ: – V. Good indeed. Posts wired all round.

Page 3 of report is missing. Recommences at page 4.

B. (b) Contd
to stout wooden pickets. The wire is in fairly good condition, but in places has been blown up by shell fire.
2 The ground between the latter wire and ‘R’ LINE is full of shell holes and seems to have been laid with cross trip wire on short pickets.
But owing to shell fire this has been badly mangled, the broken places having been filled in with barbed concertinas.
This wire comes to within 4 yards of ‘R’ LINE.

N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
DECK.
——————————–
Notes on Maps in Possession.
1. About 30 57C NW Edition 4A. Achiet Le Grand.
2. About 30 57C SW “ “ Martinpuich
3. About 10 1/20,000 Puisieux
4. 1 Achiet.

Norman Richardson 2nd Lieut S.O. 27 November 1916

ARMY BOOK 152
CORRESPONDENCE BOOK
(FIELD SERVICE)
Opened on Nov. 1st 1916.
Started Intelligence Nov 21st 1916.
Norman Richardson 2nd Lieut S.O.
DECK. 27/11/16
REPORTS on Wire.
{ A. Forward of ‘C’ Line.

{B. Between ‘C’ and ‘R’ Line.

A. Forward of ‘C’ Line. In front of Left Front Co. the wire is very good; that of the Right Front Co. is not so good, but here there are stretches of entanglements and wire, old but forming effective obstacles over 100 yds into No Man’s Land.
(a) Right Front Co.
1. Patrol Report of 25/11/16. Place of exit was Left Advanced Post from YOUNG ST. “On our return journey we entered our wire about 50 yards West of the wire fence. The wire was chiefly French wire and little barbed wire was encountered. We struck the wire fence about 30 yards from its junction with ‘Z’ Hedge.”
2. Patrol Report 24/11/16. Place of exit was junction of YOUNG ST & ‘C’ LINE K.3.d.2.9. “The outer edge of our wire is about 100 yards from our parapet”—-“ We left our lines at K.3.d.2.9. and proceeded along the wooden fence which runs out in a N.E. direction. We went about 100 yards along this, the going was fairly easy and we walked all the way. The wire on the fence is still standing. On the left hand side of the fence, very little of our wire is left. On the right the wire is much broken but would form a difficult obstacle.
3. There is fairly good wire round the posts at the head of YUSSIF and also of YOUNG ST.
4. Between these two posts there has originally been a little wire but much of it has been blown away & does not afford much of an obstacle at all.
5. The wire at the YUSSIF post is within bombing range.

(b) Left Front Co. [from YUSSIF to SAP]
1. From YUSSIF to YUZ. – Good; 20 ft wide.
2. From YUZ to SAP – On the whole good; about 20 ft wide.
3. Opposite the end of YUZ: – V. Good indeed. Posts wired all round.

Page 3 of report is missing. Recommences at page 4.

B. (b) Contd
to stout wooden pickets. The wire is in fairly good condition, but in places has been blown up by shell fire.
1 The ground between the latter wire and ‘R’ LINE is full of shell holes and seems to have been laid with cross trip wire on short pickets.
But owing to shell fire this has been badly mangled, the broken places having been filled in with barbed concertinas.
This wire comes to within 4 yards of ‘R’ LINE.

N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
DECK.
——————————–
Notes on Maps in Possession.
1. About 30 57C NW Edition 4A. Achiet Le Grand.
2. About 30 57C SW “ “ Martinpuich
3. About 10 1/20,000 Puisieux
4. 1 Achiet.

——————————-
On separate leaf.

Dugouts. Left Coys Front.
1. Signallers 15 men lying supported by strong beams. 12’ cover.
2. Coy H.Q. 3 beds, supported by 6” props. 4’ cover.
3. Runners. 6 men. 8’ cover.
4. Holds 20 men. 2 entrances. 4’ top.
5. 12 men. good condition. 6’ cover.
6. Elephant dugout, holds 8. cover 3’.
7. Holds 6. Off servants. 4’ cover.

Shelters.
1. Weatherproof hold 3 men.
Others 4 each hold 4. 3’ cover.
2. 2 each hold 5 men. Corrugated iron cover
3. Patrol post. hold 4 men. Corrugated Iron cover
4. 5 others in SUPPORT LINE hold 3 men. Corrugated Iron cover.
F.C. Bootimore Lt.
D Coy
24.11.16.

Illustration of locations.

Norman Richardson 26 November 1916

ARMY BOOK 152
CORRESPONDENCE BOOK
(FIELD SERVICE)
Opened on Nov. 1st 1916.
Started Intelligence Nov 21st 1916.
Norman Richardson
2nd Lieut S.O.
DECK
SIGNAL SECTION.
DECK
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.
From 6 pm, 25/11/16 till 6 am, 26/11/16
OPERATIONS.
Intermittent shelling of HEBUTERNE with 5.9” & 4.2”, commencing at 5.50 pm and at intervals of five to ten minutes, till 7.0 pm. Occasional rounds were sent over during the night but on the whole, the enemy’s artillery was very quiet.
Own Artillery: very quiet.
Enemy T.Ms: 6.30 pm: Enemy noticed our wiring party at top of YUZ and put 3 minenwerfer (small) close to them. No damage was done.
Enemy M.Gs: quiet.

INTELLIGENCE.
See Patrol Summaries (enclosed)
Note: Received Quadrant Periscope from BOW.
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK
—————————————
DECK
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.
From 6 am till 6 pm, 26/11/16
OPERATIONS.
Enemy Artillery: The morning was very quiet, owing to the rain and mist. In the afternoon it became much clearer and consequently there was greater artillery activity on both sides. A few 5.9” shells fell near the R. Support Co. H.Q. And between 3 & 4 pm shells of the same calibre (shrapnel) were directed on the batteries on the left of HEBUTERNE.
INTELLIGENCE.
Enemy Movement: sentry frequently seen at K.4.d.1.5.
10.30 am men seen going along commun trenches K.5.a.20 to K.5.a.5.2.
10.45 am Movements seen along trench K.4.d.7.9. to K.4.d.8.8. Our Artillery shelled this trench.
12.30 pm Men frequently during next hour were seen moving about trenches in the cemetery K.4.d.7.8. Our observers were unable to perceive their occupation.
1 pm – 2 pm Observation kept on point K.4.b.4.4. which we suspect to be an O.P. owing to its position & appearance.
1.15 pm man was seen to leave this position.
Men seen at intervals with full pack on.

Enemy Work
8.30 am. Working party seen in trench K.5.c.6.1. to K.c.10.95. draining trench. Reported to artillery who shelled the trench.
9.15 am. Working party in trench K.4.d.4.7. to K.4.d.7.5. This party was also draining trench & were reported to artillery.
12.45 pm. Two men in great-coats & steel helmets, with full pack were seen leaving trenches at point E.28.b.5.2.
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK

Norman Richardson 25 November 1916

ARMY BOOK 152
CORRESPONDENCE BOOK
(FIELD SERVICE)
Opened on Nov. 1st 1916.
Started Intelligence Nov 21st 1916.
Norman Richardson
2nd Lieut S.O.
DECK
SIGNAL SECTION.
DECK.
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.
From 6 pm, 24th /11/16 till 6 am, 25th /11/16
OPERATIONS.
Enemy Artillery: Exceptionally quiet during the night.
Own Artillery: fired on various targets, some shells fell short close to the MOUSETRAP. No damage was done.
Enemy T.Ms: silent.
Enemy M.Gs: fired bursts at 2.30 am and 6.50 am over HEBUTERNE.

INTELLIGENCE.
Owing to being so misty, observation rendered very difficult.
PATROL REPORTS.
Sent in by Adjutant.
I enclose summaries which I made.
[Our patrol directed 18 pdr shrapnel on to Bosche Wiring party & a covering party near K.4.c.9.4.
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK
—————————————
DECK.
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.
From 6 am till 6 pm, 25th /11/16
OPERATIONS.
Enemy Artillery: At 11.30 am the enemy sent ten rounds of 77 mm shells into N.E. portions of HEBUTERNE.
At 12.30 pm this performance was repeated, but no damage was done.
On the whole the artillery of both sides has been very quiet today, owing to rainy & dull weather.
Enemy M.Gs: At 6.50 am, bursts of fire were directed on the left half of HEBUTERNE. This lasted till 7.0 am.
Enemy T.Ms: quiet.

INTELLIGENCE.
A very quiet day, owing to the wet & mist, observation has been very bad.
Snipers inactive on both sides.
Note: Work is still being done on Sniping Post L2 (YIDDISH)
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK
—————————————
Patrol Report (Summaries)
25/26/11/16.
DECK
No Compn Time of Place of Object RESULTS
Exit Entry Exit Entry
1 1 Sgt + 4 men 9.0 pm Junction of Young St. & C line To listen for Bosche working parties U& patrols 1 Heard Bosche working party sounds coming from the N. The patrol was then at a point about K.4.c.5.3.
Note: Going was bad, owing to darkness and wet state of ground.

2 1 Offr + 1 N.C.O + 3 men 930 pm 12.0 mn K.10.a.20.90. Do To examine German wire near K.4.c.1.50. 1 When patrol reached K.4.c.4.2. they heard Bosche working party (filling sandbags) to the N.
There was a covering party.
2 Many new shell holes.
3 1 Sgt + 4 men 7.0 pm K.3.d.25.60. Do To examine wire & saps from Western corner of GOMMCT Wood. 1. Bosche Sap directly opposite point of exit was being wired. Sap is very muddy, although sounds were heard as of a man stamping his feet on bricks or cement.
2. Two flares sent up from front along hedge, slightly N of the sap.
3. This hedge seems to be on a ridge.
4. Two M.Gs opened fire from corner of hedge near sap.
Note: Night very dark for good observation. Too much wind.

4 1 N.C.O. + 4 men 9.30 pm 12.15 am K.3.d.24.60. Do As No * 1 A circular trench about 20x beyond our wire seemed to lead to head of Bosch sap at 4 bare trees.
2 Bosch working in sap head. Saw cigarette being smoked. Heard voices further back in sap.
3 Saw flashes (like electric torches) in GOMMECOURT PARK.
4 Party of 11 Bosche (3 covering party came out of their wire to the N & ****.

N. Richardson
2/Lt.
I.O.
DECK

TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT. From 6 am till 6 am, 24/11/16.

ARMY BOOK 152
CORRESPONDENCE BOOK
(FIELD SERVICE)
Opened on Nov. 1st 1916.
Started Intelligence Nov 21st 1916.
Norman Richardson
2nd Lieut S.O.
DECK
SIGNAL SECTION.
DECK.
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.
From 6 pm, 23/11/16 till 6 am, 24/11/16.
Operations.
Enemy Artillery: HEBUTERNE was shelled during the night with about 30 rounds, 4.2” shells at 10 pm & 11 pm. About 20 of the same calibre came over near the Left Support Co. on the left of the village at 1.30 am and 5.0 am.
Own Artillery: carried out a prearranged programme at 9 pm, 9.45 pm & 10.30 pm; for the purpose of keeping gaps in the enemy wire open.
Enemy T.M’s: Fairly quiet. On the right of our sector a few L.T.Ms fell. Also about 20 L.T.Ms were sent over our left company frontage mostly on “B” line. No damage was done.
Enemy M.G’s: active between 4.30 pm and 7 pm traversing the parapets and striking the houses near Bn HQ.
INTELLIGENCE. (Movement)
A wiring party was heard at K.4.c.30.80. after the first burst of fire. Nothing else was heard of the enemy.
The T.Ms seemed to be firing from K.4.c.40.70.
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK
Note: This was not sent in till 7.40 am. It may be late.
—————————————
DECK.
TACTICAL PROGRESS REPORT.  From 6 am till 6 am, 24/11/16.
OPERATIONS.
Enemy Artillery: Enemy shelled HEBUTUERNE intermittently with 5.9” H.E., especially between 8.45 am and 9.15 am and 1.30 pm and 2 pm.
A few whizz-bangs were distributed about the trenches. Some were registered around the MOUSETRAP, also the DISUSED TRENCH, but no damage was done. One bay about 30x N of YUZ was blown in, in ‘R’ line.
Own Artillery: continuous all day.
Enemy T.M’s: silent today.
Enemy M.G’s: firing on our aircraft in the early morning..
INTELLIGENCE.
Enemy movement. Parties of men seen moving about near E.23.d.81.
Enemy Work: 7.0 am: Small party working in communication trench at K.4.c.9.4. digging – Reported to R.F.A. who shelled with H.E. – Work ceased.
7.0 am – 8.0 am: Small parties working in trench at E.30.a.90.70.to E.30.d.58.
8.30 am: Small working party at K.4.d.5.7.
Reported to Artillery who dispersed this party.
Work continued at E.30.a.90.70. as above.
11.25 am. Small working parties observed again at K.4.c.9.4. & again dispersed by our artillery.
3.45 pm: Working party started digging in cemetery GOMMECOURT
Reported to R.F.A. who opened fire on them and the party cleared off.

Sniping:
9.30 am: Four men were seen working on broken part of Trench at point K.3.d.6.5. One was observed to be using a mall. He was immediately fired on and fell face downwards into the trench. The other three at once rushed for cover. Only one of the party was observed to be wearing a steel helmet, the others round caps.
10.30 am: Two men were seen to be carrying New Wood deals into front line trench at point K.3.d.8.7. These were fired on but no hits observed.

Enemy Snipers: inactive.
Note 1. Light was bad in the morning especially between 6 am & 7 am and 8 am and 12 noon.
Note 2. Work continued on Sniping post L2 (YIDDISH)
N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK
————————————–
Patrol Reports (Summaries)
DECK
No Compn Time of Place of Object RESULTS
Exit Entry Exit Entry
1 1 N.C.O + 4 O.R. 6.30 pm 1 German seen walking from Bosch Sap at K.3.d.72.63. to sap at K.3.d.55.67.
2. Wiring party of 10 seen outside their wire a little right of K.3.d.69.66.

2 1 N.C.O + 4 O.R 6.30 pm 8.45 pm K.3.d.2.9. K.10.a.7.7. 1. Our Wire is about 100x from our parapet. On left of point of exit, wire is poor. On right it is much broken, but a good obstacle.
2. Ground: fair condition. Many new shell holes, with no water in them.
3. Patrol had to return, being fired on by a covering party of Bosche wiring party at a point about 300 yards half right from point of exit.
3 1 Offr + 5 O.R. 10.15 pm 11.55 pm K.10.a.25.90. Do Listening to working parties 1. Heard Bosche wiring party about K.4.c.6.6.
2. Noises from our side of line clearly audible e.g. “Fire” (batteries), Coughing & talking. Also transport.

4 1 Offr + 5 O.R. 9.35 pm 12.5 am K.3.d.3.6. 40 yds to left of point of exit. 1 Bosche Wire is a considerable distance from his trench.
2 Heard German transport distinctly.
Note: Very bad visibility

N. Richardson
2nd Lt.
I.O.
DECK

Norman Richardson 24 November 1916

ARMY BOOK 152
CORRESPONDENCE BOOK
(FIELD SERVICE)
Opened on Nov. 1st 1916.
Started Intelligence Nov 21st 1916.
Norman Richardson
2nd Lieut S.O.
DECK
SIGNAL SECTION.
Notes on Maps in Possession.
1. About 30 57C NW Edition 4A. Achiet Le Grand.
2. About 30 57C SW “ “ Martinpuich
3. About 10 1/20,000 Puisieux
4. 1 Achiet.

——————————-
On separate leaf.

Dugouts. Left Coys Front.
1. Signallers 15 men lying supported by strong beams. 12’ cover.
2. Coy H.Q. 3 beds, supported by 6” props. 4’ cover.
3. Runners. 6 men. 8’ cover.
4. Holds 20 men. 2 entrances. 4’ top.
5. 12 men. good condition. 6’ cover.
6. Elephant dugout, holds 8. cover 3’.
7. Holds 6. Off servants. 4’ cover.

Shelters.
1. Weatherproof hold 3 men.
Others 4 each hold 4. 3’ cover.
2. 2 each hold 5 men. Corrugated iron cover
3. Patrol post. hold 4 men. Corrugated Iron cover
4. 5 others in SUPPORT LINE hold 3 men. Corrugated Iron cover.
F.C. Bootimore Lt.
D Coy
24.11.16.

Illustration of locations.

Letter to Dick-Cunyngham dated 24 Nov 1916

Letter to Dick-Cunyngham dated 24 Nov 1916

Written on embossed Government notepaper.
24.11.16
Dear Dick-Cunyingham,

Please congratulate those concerned on the work done in connection with Beaumont-Hamel and clearing up generally.

We are sorry to loose you hope you may yet come back to the V Corps

Yours **
Gerald Boyd