Message 14 March 1917

“A” Form



To        Camp Comdt.


Senders Number                     Day of Month             In reply to Number     AAA

IG 632                                                 14


Fifth Army reports they have consolidated brickfields at N.2.A.5.5. AAA Trench H.31.B.0.3. to H.32.D.2.7. occupied by us AAA Line West of G.23.C.3.0. now runs West to G.22.C.8.1. North to G.22.A.5.3., G.22.A.0.7., G.21. Central Railways in G.20. central AAA Post established at F.26.D.3015. AAA ends.




Time: 11/40 am

(Sd) K.M. Leader Lieut G.S.

Signature of Addressee


14 March 1917




20 Division probable dispositions 5th March, 1917.

Camp Comdt.
SECRET. 20th Division No. G.762.
1. The advance to be reckoned with is an advance by short bounds from one enemy trench system to another.
The advance of the Division will probably be in a N.E. direction, and will include, as the first step, a move towards the LE TRANSLOY Line, viz: – SUN TRENCH, MOON TRENCH, STAR TRENCH, and the village of LE TRANSLOY. The next bound would be to the BARASTRE – ROCQUIGNY line. The first advance would carry our line forward about 800 – 1,000 yards, while the second step would be one of about 2,500 yards, beyond the LE TRANSLOY Line.

2. Some of the factors which will regulate the rate of the advance are:-
(i) The reconstruction of roads and railways (both light and ordinary) with a view to bringing up supplies and material.
(ii) Ability to bring forward guns to support the advance.
(iii) The resistance offered by the enemy.
The factors under (i) and (ii) are known quantities as regards the present fighting area. The resistance of the enemy may be counted on to be energetic, and it may therefore be assumed that the rate of progression will be slow.

3. On the 7th instant, Brigades will have been reformed into their proper groupings, and it is proposed, unless orders to the contrary are received, to advance with whichever two Brigades happen to be in the line, the Brigade from CARNCY being kept in Reserve.

4. The action of the two forward Brigades will consist in sending out strong fighting patrols, to their front, within the Divisional limits defined by the Corps, and to keep touch with the retiring enemy and occupy all evacuated trenches. It is most important that at this stage, lateral communication between these patrols be maintained. Divisional orders will define the spheres within which patrols of each Brigade will operate.

5. The Headquarters of Formations will move forward to new positions as soon as the LE TRANSLOY line has been occupied. These will be as follows:-
Divl: H.Qrs (including H.Qrs R.A. & R.E.) to GUILLEMONT.
Reserve Brigade to GUILLEMONT.
Bde in MORVAL Sector to dugouts T.12.a.60.75.
Bde in LESBOEUFS Sector to “ T.5.c.45.25.
Bn. H.Qrs of above 2 Bdes to most suitable dugouts in our own
front line or the enemy’s front line, according to the position of their Battns.
2nd Echelon Divl: H.Qrs. to BRIQUETERIE.
Should the advance continue to the BARASTRE – ROCQUIGNY line, “G” Branch, Divisional Headquarters, moves to the Left Brigade H.Qrs. in T.6.a., while both leading Brigade H.Qrs move to suitable positions in the LE TRASNOY line, and Battalion H.Qrs to selected points in rear of their units between the LE TRASNOY and BARASTRE – ROCQUIGNY lines.

6. Unless orders are received to the contrary, units will advance at their trench strengths. The personnel not with units and not required for Works Battalion or other Corps work, will move with the transport which will follow up the advance, under orders to be issued by “Q”. The personnel with the transport will be considered to be the 50% reinforcements to be kept out of the fight in accordance with O.B. 1635 (Instructions for the training of Divisions for Offensive Action). The extra regimentally employed men to return to units when advance begins, will probably be those attached to Tunnelling Coys, Hutting Coy. and to those units whose existence has become necessary through Trench warfare.

7. Troops advancing over the occupied area cannot count on any accommodation beyond that which may be found in evacuated dugouts which have not been destroyed by the enemy, and may therefore have to bivouac in the open. “Q” Branch are ascertaining what tent squares (bivouacs) will be available.
Until the roads have been repaired, rations, water, tools, ammunition etc., will have to be carried by the troops themselves, with the assistance of pack-animals. Pack-animals will not be able to proceed usually beyond Battalion Headquarters.
The transport lines would probably be advanced to the neighbourhood of GUILLEMONT and GINCHY as soon as the move commences, and sites for these are to be reconnoitred now by Transport Officers, the reconnaissance being co-ordinated by “Q”.

8. The most suitable map to be used by troops will be sheet 57c. S.W., 1/20,000.

9. When the advance commences, the S.A.A. Section D.A.C. will come under the control of “Q” and will be at once moved to GUILLEMONT, the proposed site for transport lines being selected beforehand.

10. Tool carts will be filled up to mobilization scale at D.A.D.O.S. dumps, under orders from “Q”.
11. Details as regards disposal of stores, equipment to be worn, transport arrangements etc. will be issued by “Q” in due course.
T. McN. Haskard
Lieut. Col.
General Staff, 20th Division.
5th March, 1917.

Copies to:-
59th Inf. Bde.
60th Inf. Bde.
61st Inf. Bde.
11th Durham L.I.
Divl Train.
A.A. & Q.M.G.
Camp Commandant.
XIV Corps “G” (for information).

Report on Raid 27 February 1917

Report on Raid 27 February 1917


Between pages 40/41.


Report of attempted Raid by Enemy on night 25/26 February 1917 on right Company sector & action taken by left Coy.


At 12.35 a.m. my H.Q. sentry reported a succession of green very lights being fired from the front line.


I immediately investigated the matter & decided that the S.O.S. was required. I fired 3 rockets (green) which all failed to ascend the sticks being stuck in the mud.


I loosened the 4th which was quite satisfactory.


I then saw that the bombardment was more intense on my right than my left & accordingly wired S.O.S. Boyaux 6 (1.40 am)


I had previously in the evening discussed the question of a raid on the right coy & the factors pointing to it with 2/Lt Shury & I had thought that the bombardment at dawn 24/25 was directed in a line from Boyaux 6 to S of junction OLD BOOTS & MUNSTER PARADE which lead me to suppose that it was the N edge of a box barrage.


I sent accordingly a verbal message over the phone. The message sent arrived thus “From Mr GREEN he thinks C Coy are getting it”.


I then sent 2 orderlies to MUNSTER TUNNEL to ascertain the situation. They reported all clear.


I then went to O.C. A. Coy & obtained from him a squad 1 officer, 1 N.C.O. & 11 men issued them with Mills No 5 & ordered them to proceed up MUNSTER TUNNEL & establish connection with RAILWAY SAPS POSTS & left Right of Coy & if all clear to return & report to me.


I then ordered 2 Lt Shurry to go to O.C. A Coy & tell him to send a squad to my left post & if all clear to establish connection with Tunnel post & return via TUNNEL & report to me there.


I then proceeded to TUNNEL & found everything satisfactory except that one Lewis Gun was out of action. A message was sent to O.C. A Coy for another gun which arrived some hours afterwards.


All liaison patrols returned at 4 p.m. & garrisons replaced by 5 pm.


Casualties as far as known at present

1 Sergt.            Killed.

2 Pte                Missing believed killed (buried)

6 “                  Wounded

2 “                  *****

W.C. Green O.C. D Coy

8 a.m. 27.2.17

Message 27 February 1917

“A” Form



To        Camp Comdt (Adv)


Senders Number                     Day of Month             In reply to Number     AAA

G.B. 305                                             27


The Left Division attacked this morning at 5.30 am. enemy’s trenches from N.36D.4.2. to N.35.D.8.0. and ERSATZ point as ordered AAA From reports received from the air and other sources this attack appears to have been successful and all objectives have been taken except for that portion on the right of the attack from N.36.D.00.05. to N.36.D.4.2. where the situation still appears doubtful AAA Up to date 6 Officers 336 OR and 2 machine guns have been captured AAA Prisoners belong to 119 R, 121 R. and 11th Bavarian R.I.R. AAA Prisoners state attack came as complete surprise AAA Our casualties reported to be small AAA Regiments who took part in attack were RASHER and REALM AAA Addsd C.R.A., C.R.E., TUMULT, TRAWL, TONE, TUBE, SENIOR SCHOOL and Divl Troops




Time: 3 pm

  1. Durrant S/Sgt *** G.S.

Signature of Addressee



? 27 Feb 1917

Message form 27 February 1917

“A” Form



To                    Camp Cdt.


Senders Number                     Day of Month             In reply to Number     AAA

G.B.312                                              27


Situation now reported as quiet AAA All objectives have been captured and in addition posts have been pushed forward to N.36.C.6.95. and N.35.D.6.3.




Time: 7 pm.

  1. Durrant S/Sgt *** G.S

Signature of Addressee


? 27 Feb 1917.

Cambrin orders 26 February 1917

Cambrin orders 26 February 1917


CAMBRIN 1917 Some routine orders & reports.


2Lt Laurens No 13 Platoon.


  1. You will be relieved in trenches tonight by No 3 Platoon A Coy at 10 pm.
  2. You will send a guide to Dug outs in High Street at 9.45 p.m.
  3. Your Lewis Guns will hand over drums received from IRON.
  4. After relief you will take over SIMS KEEP.
  5. No person will leave their posts until properly relieved.
  6. Empty Water Tins must be carried out by you.
  7. Report to Coy H.Q. after relief.
  8. Rations will be drawn after relief.


  1. C. Green


O.C. D Coy



No 15 platoon.


  1. You will be relieved tonight at 10 p.m. by No 4 Platoon A Coy
  2. Your Lewis Guns will hand over drums received from IRON.
  3. After relief Lewis Guns team proceeds to Dug Out in OLD BOOT TRENCH where they will find equal number of Drums.
  4. After relief you will detail 4 men to report to Sergt Downs to make him up to nine men without N.C.O.s.
  5. The remainder of your platoon will after relief proceed to Dug out in OLD BOOT TRENCH between Lewis Alley & MAISON ROUGE.
  6. Bring out all petrol tins & dump them at Coy H.Q.
  7. No person will leave his post until properly relieved.
  8. Report to Coy H.Q. when relief complete.
  9. Rations will be drawn after relief.


W.C. Green

O.C. D Coy



No 16 Platoon. Sergt Downs.

  1. You will be relieved in Tunnel tonight at 10 p.m. by a part of Nos 1 & 2 Platoon A Coy.
  2. After relief you will form a bombing post of yourself & 9men and proceed to Dug outs in High Street between BOYAR 10 & 11.
  3. You will obtain the men to make up your strength from No 15 platoon.
  4. The remainder of your N.C.Os will proceed to Dug out in OLD BOOTS TRENCH between LEWIS ALLEY & MAISON ROUGE.
  5. N.C.Os will carry out petrol tins & dump them at Coy H.Q. They will report to me relief complete & will be responsible for drawing your rations & getting them up to you.
  6. You must bring out all Rifles & equipment of wounded etc. You may call on No 15 to assist in this.
  7. A guide will meet you in OLD BOOTS to conduct you to dug outs.
  8. Your orders on Dugouts are to support A Coy in front of you in case of emergency.


W.C. Green

Lt O.C. D Coy



2/Lt Desborough – No 14 Platoon.



  1. You will be relieved from trenches tonight at about 10 p.m. by 1 & 2 Platoons A Coy under 2 Lt WARD.
  2. You will send a guide to report to this Coy H.Q. by 8.30 p.m. tonight & I will instruct him in his duties.
  3. The relief will come down MAIN GUAGE RAILWAY in order of posts at 2 minutes intervals.
  4. Your Lewis Gun Team will hand over DRUMS received from IRON & will pick up equal number at Coy H.Q.
  5. After relief your men will file out by posts & you will arrange to collect them at Junction of OLD BOOTS & MAIN GUAGE RAILWAY. Thence proceed N along top of OLD BOOTS to Dug outs on OLD BOOTS.
  6. No man will leave his post until properly relieved.
  7. All petrol tins, – rifles & equipment of wounded will be carried out by you & brought to Coy H.Q.
  8. Report relief complete.
  9. Password tonight HOPS.


W.C. Green Lt

O.C. D. Coy.

5.30 p.m.




Herewith report on men recommended for mention in despatches.


No 31039 A/Cpl Trowell A. i/c Lewis Gun.  Has done continual good work in the trenches.  Is specially recommended by the Lewis Gun Officer.  Has been with the Battn since July 1916.


1038 A/Sergt Deyes G.  Has been with Bn since July 1916.  Has done continual good work always ready to help & *** an emergency.


31210 Cpl Spence J.  Has been with Bn since July 1916.  previously with Dardanelles Campaign.  Very reliable N.C.O.  Good patroller.


W.C. Green Lt.

O.C. D. Coy.





Work & Wire report.


SAPs & CRATERS    Nil.

FRONT LINE            Cleared trenches between Boyau 6 & 7 after bombardment.

Support LINE             Nil.

RESERVE LINE       LATRINES Old Boots & SIMS KEEP put in sanitary condition.


Lewis Alley from junction with Old BOOTS to SIMS KEEP cleaned of MUD.

WIRE                          4 coils of wire put out in front line at gap between BOYAUX 10 & 11. – Wire examined here & found satisfactory.

Wire in front Old BOOTS & round SIMS KEEP satisfactory.


W.C. Green Lt.

O.C. D Coy

1.3.17 3 p.m.




  1. Coy. BRASS. Ref Op Orders No 9 1.3.17


  1. The Coy will be relieved by a Coy of 9th K.O.Y.L.I. today at about 1 p.m.
  2. After relief the Coy will proceed by platoons to ANNEQUIN, the Platoon Commander marching in rear of his command & taking great care to prevent straggling. Platoon must proceed in formed bodies.
  3. All movements from CAMBRIN to ANNEQUIN must be at 200 yards distance between platoons.
  4. The whole Coy must go out by LEWIS ALLEY.
  5. Each platoon will report relief to Coy H.Q.
  6. No 16 Platoon will not wait to be relieved but will join up with No 13 in SIMS KEEP at 12.30 p.m. sending one man to report to O.C. A Coy at the same time.
  7. Lewis Gunners will leave drums as usual.
  8. All Dugouts will be left thoroughly clean likewise latrines. ***


W.C. Green Lt.

O.C. D Coy



Ref return re wire-cutters & breakers I have at present 10 wire cutters and 8 wire breakers (rifle)

Deficient – 6 wire cutters.

W.C. Green 2/Lt.

O.C. D. Coy





I certify that the rocket signals at my H.Q. are complete and correct. aaa.


2 more Port flares should be sent up in case of losses. aaa

W.C. Green Lt.

O.C. D. Coy.


7 p.m.



Maps herewith as follows:-

FRANCE        36 C                1/10,000                      1

“                 36 B                1/10,000                      1

“                 36 C. N.W.      1/20,000                      6

“                36 B. N.E.       1/10,000                      6

LOOS             36 C. N.W.      1/10,000                      6

LABASSEE   36 C N.W.       1/10,000                      7

Belgium           Sheet 27                                              1

W.C. Green Lt.

O.C. D. Coy



List of maps handed to Bn H.Q. Gives date of move from BETHUNE Area.



20 Light Division Instructions No 15 25 February 1917

SECRET.                                                                                            Copy No. —-

25th Feby 1917






The action of the Artillery on Zero Day will be as follows:-

  1. (a) Vigorous counter-battery work by specially detailed Groups of Heavy and Siege Artillery.

(b) Bombardment of selected points.

(c) Barrages.

As regards (a) and (b), their action requires no explanation, but as regards   Barrages all ranks must be fully cognisant of the methods which will be   employed.



This will operate according to the Barrage Map Attached.  Should our troops have pushed forward at such a distance beyond the STEENBEEK as to render it unsafe to open on first barrage line, then this will be omitted, and the barrage will open on the second line, remaining on this line until Zero plus 10 minutes.

Any line on which the barrage “piles up” so as to conform to its shape is called the “Piling up Line”.

The BROWN Line as shown on map, 200 yards from, and parallel to, each objective, are called the “Protective Barrage Lines”, as these are the lines on which the creeping barrage remains during the consolidation of the objective.


  1. Before the lifting of a “Protective Barrage”, the rate of fire increases from half a round per gun per minute to three rounds per gun per minute for 5 minutes immediately prior to the lift.       This would be an indication to the Infantry that it is time to advance close to the barrage for the next forward bound.



The role of the Standing Barrage is to engage more definite objectives        than the Creeping Barrage, and to catch any of the enemy that may be retiring.       This barrage moves on in front of the Creeping Barrage from target to target,     and is never overtaken by it.  In this case it consists of five 18-pounder       batteries and probably two 4.5 How, batteries.  Certain 4.5 Hows. will be      employed to block the roads by advancing along them 200 yards in front of the      first wave.

The 18-pounder Standing Barrage will search 150yards in front and in rear of        the RED Line, whilst the Infantry occupy the GREEN Line.



This consists of two 6” Howitzer batteries and probably two 4.5 How.        batteries.  These guns search the area from 300 yards to 1,200 yards in front of     the advancing Infantry to keep down enemy long-range machine gun fire.



Should the wind be favourable, the Artillery has been ordered to form the following smoke screens:-

  1. Along the GREEN Line at Zero plus 40 minutes to Zero plus 50 minutes. In this barrage no smoke will be fired South of LANGEMARK-WHITE HOUSE Road.
  2. From Zero plus 1 hour and 30 minutes to Zero plus 1 hour and 50 minutes, on the RED Line from the Right Divisional Boundary to a point outside the Left Divl. Boundary.
  3.       The smoke barrage on the GREEN Line is to cover the consolidation of the            BLUE Line, and on the RED Line to cover the consolidation of the GREEN      Line.
  1. In the event of our Infantry being seriously held up in the advance, the creeping barrage will be stopped in order to recommence under orders of the Divisional Commander.

Every 18 Pdr. creeping barrage which is stopped and brought back will       invariably fire 4 rounds per gun per minute for the four minutes immediately       prior to the recommencement of the creep forward.  This will give the Infantry   the necessary warning that the advance is to be resumed.

When the barrage starts again after being brought back there will be no fire            within 100 yards of the flank of any Infantry who have got forward.


  1. Troops detailed for any particular objective are not to be engaged in the capture of a previous objective without orders from Divisional Headquarters.

The B.G.C. concerned can, however, order up, on his own responsibility, one         Company (but not more) to reinforce any line held up, but this will only be done in case of urgent necessity.




  1. McD Haskard

Lieut. Colonel,

General Staff, 20th Division.

11th Aug 1917.

Issued to Signals at


Copies to –

No 1. 59th Inf Bde.                           14. XIV Corps.

  1. 60th Inf. Bde.                          15. 11th Division.
  2. 61st Inf. Bde.                           16. 29th Division.
  3. B.G. R.A.                                17. 38th Division.
  4. C.R.E.                                     18. XIV Corps R.A.
  5. Div. Signals.                            19. XIV Corps H.A.
  6. Div. Pioneers.                          20. No. 8 Heavy Arty. Group.
  7. Div. M.G. Coy.                       21. No 9 Sqdn. R.F.C.
  8. A.D.M.S.                                22. G.O.C.
  9. A.P.M.                                                23. G.S.O.1.
  10. A.A. & Q.M.G..                      24. G.S.O. 2.
  11. D.M.G.O., 20th Div.                25. War Diary
  12. D.M.G.O., 38th Div.                26. File.