9 May 1917

Extract from the diary of Norman Hughes, “B” Coy, 1/4th Cheshire Regiment 53rd (Welsh) Division [Norman Hughes came from Neston]

The Turkish aeroplanes came over last night and dropped bombs by railhead and on their way back they made big swoops down to earth by some of our forces’ dug outs and applied their machine guns. There were about 70 casualties.  The humming of their engine broke the usual silence of these Egyptian and Syrian nights which set in so suddenly, there being no after glow of sunset.  “At one strides [sic] comes the dark” and then in the cloudless heavens the stars rush out in multitudes and brilliancy, which is said to be a “picture the untravelled can never imagine.”  Certainly you don’t see such nights a[t] home, and many ‘a’ many [sic] we have had these heavens for the roof of our bedroom

Extract from war diary of 1st Bn, 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment

Arleux

At 2 a.m. our intense barrage opened, 1st Devons & 1st Norfolks attacked Fresnoy.

Later orders received to relieve 1st D.C.L.I. in Arleux Loop.  This was completed by 6.30 a.m.  Position of battalion in Arleux Loop  about B5 d to T29 central.

At 7 a.m. enemy opened barrage but did not leave his trenches.

Casualties O.R’s Killed 2 Wounded 5 Gassed 7.

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