Foggy this morning, cleared off by .Few
machines over in afternoon.
Artillery quiet on the whole.Went round to Mess tonight, laughed until I cried at Joe.
Good many machines over this morning.Pay day.Received books
from Ma, letter and cigs from Gertie.
Received letter from Dad.Day
uneventful.Went round to the
Aerial wire breaks this morning.Big job to repair it.Received
letter from Gertie.
Artillery active this afternoon.Spent evening in billet.
Few shells came over.
Fine day plenty of machines over.Artillery fairly active.Spent
evening in billet.
I heard that 32nd Division is moving.
The 32nd Division was originally part of the Fifth New
Army, and was numbered 39th. However, the Fourth New Army was broken up in
April 1915, and the Division was renumbered 32nd, part of K4. It was
formed of many units that had been raised by public subscription and
private projects. It served on the Western Front with distinction
throughout the war.
letters from Miss Skinner and Nellie.Captain came, told us we are shifting (rotten).Had a bath.
up soldiers’ baths
Day quiet, few machines over.Received letters from Miss Skinner and Syd Mould.Wrote some letters this evening.
Captain came and told us to pack up but did not go.Received letter from Syd M.
Received letter from Gertie.New operator came, still at Martinsart.Roused up at to go on duty, station dismantled e.g. nothing doing.
Snow this morning.
French regain part of
trenches lost at Frise, and repulse Germans at Vimy Ridge.
Nobody came for us, all packed up.
Germans repulsed south of
Same as yesterday.
Received parcels from Miss Search and Ma.
Exciting time in Martinsart.Shells coming over fairly thick.
Letter from Gertie.
A miss is as good as a mile.Amended 6/8/16 Not always so with 5.9s, 8 inch, etc
A very large artillery gun,
8 inch Howitzers fired 200 lb (90.8kg) shells.
Letters from Miss Search and Gertie.Nothing of importance.
Heavy fighting round Frise:
French lose ground.
Left 165 Brigade, to go to Suzanne, some dugout, instrument in
same place we sleep.Very
Moved to Dragons Wood, near
the village of Suzanne, seven miles SE of Albert, where he stayed until 9th
Left 165 Brigade, Royal Field Artillery to join 9th SiegeBattery, Royal
Garrison Artillery (RGA).The Siege batteries had the largest guns and howitzers; mounted on
railways or on massive fixed concrete emplacements and were consequently
rather immobile.See http://www.1914-1918.net/rga.htm for details of the Siege Batteries of the RGA.
Things fairly decent, some soldiering this.Dugout draughty as hell, going to alter this.Had supper in Officers Mess, some hut.
42’s come across, very near, plenty of noise, no damage.No machines up, rotten day.
Rumours about big move.
surprise attack this evening repelled.Heavy firing about .
Went over Left section in the evening, no sooner got there than
guns started, came away just in time, could see them dropping from side of
being moved at the Somme
Went down to 2M this morning.Came back, found aerial down, shell caught it, plenty of shells
Capt and Turner came.Rotten
day, feet soaking wet.Letters
from Maude, Ma and Chas.
Near thing for our dugout, 3 salvos (12 shells) came over, one
shell smashed aerial wire, another the guy ropes, time shells burst round
guns to no effect
Day quiet, no machines over.Plenty of rain down - not unusual.
Wonders, glorious day, good many machines over, two German
machines over this afternoon No. 1 gun busy.
Fine day, plenty of machines about, Germans as well, our
beggars frightened of them.
On 21st February 1916 the Germans attacked the French at Verdun - about 150 miles to the south east. The attack was massive and
the battle continued until nearly the end of the year. The Germans had
intended it to be overwhelming and hoped either for a breakthrough there
or to inflict so many casualties on the French that their will to continue
the War would be broken. In the end the breakthrough did not materialise,
and, although severely tested, the French will did not break. Verdun developed into a battle of attrition, and, by December, each
side had suffered about 350,000 casualties.
Snowing nearly all day, found a bon aircraft fuse.Went down to see Williams this afternoon, beautiful Chateau they
Nothing of interest.
Our pilot came over – could not make him see strips:e.g. CI.Turner came
this evening.Finch got to
open a station at Left Half; rotten.
The "Popham panels"
system was developed for ground to air signals. Cloth panels or strips
laid out on the ground provided visual confirmation of radio signals from
the aircraft. This system later became a common ground to air signalling
system for front line units.
Heavy fall of snow, up Left Half all morning putting up
station, cold as hell, about fed up got a beautiful cold and cough and
Thaw set in rotten and damp underfoot.Got boots from repair shop.
Receive letters from Gertie and Ma and parcel from Mo, tres
Luggie strafing round Suzzanne way.
“Luggie” seems to be HTT’s slang word for the Germans, along
with Bosche, Fritz and Hun.
Definition:Strafing - to
rake with fire at close range and especially with machine-gun fire from
German “Gott strafe England” meaning “God punish England”, German
propaganda slogan during World War I - 1915.
Wound an inductance to try and get Nordaitch [?] NBG, get Paris much plainer.
Should have been a shoot, weather unfavourable.
Had an aeroplane shoot for a little while this morning.Capt Wylie made a muck of things, Capt Everidge called MF, and left
section did the firing.