Tag: 9th Bn

25 March 1918

Extract from war diary of 9th Bn, 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment

At 5 a.m. a reconnaissance of the positions around GREVILLERS was carried out by the Commanding Officer and, in conjunction with the O.C 8th N. Staffs & ¼ K.S.L.I, it was decided to take up fresh positions (on the left of the 51st Divn)  in G 36 a. and c, thus filling what had been a gap in the line.   These dispositions were “D” Coy on the left – “C” Coy in the centre – “B” Coy on the right.  “A” Coy were in support and to the right – H.Q were in rear of “A” and had 1 Officer and 30 O.R of the T.M. Battery attached without guns.  H.Q subsequently moved to protect the right flank and obtain touch in their trench line with the 51st Division on the right.  At 9am the attack on the front line appeared to have commenced and by 12 noon the enemy was seen preparing for his attack on the battalion positions.  He gradually worked forward under cover of M.G and shrapnel fire until contact was made by our troops on the main road in I.31.a and G 30.d.  The troops at the latter point, belonging to the Brigade on our left, were withdrawn through GREVILLERS and the enemy thus gained possession of the high ground about G 36.b.5.0.  3 sections of M.Gs of the 19th  M.G. Battn has taken up positions in the battalion support line and, together with M.Gs retaliated in LOUPART WOOD in G 34.b (sheet 57c), inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy as he endeavoured to force large numbers of troops through over this high ground in G.36.b.5.0.  He was, however, able to establish M.G’s at this point and with them enfiladed the Battalion’s positions.  By 1.30 pm enemy masses were able to approach the trenches and prepare for a heavy assault.  The front companies were consequently withdrawn through the Supports, under cover of rifle fire and of MG fire from LOUPART WOOD in G.34 and 35.  This latter fire proved most effective and inflicted very heavy casualties on the enemy who was seen to fall in large numbers.  When the foremost enemy troops were beginning to swarm into the Battalion’s Support positions, the remaining companies withdrew under cover of small rear-guards, and formed up on the crest of the rise (about G.33.b.9.0) W. of LOUPART WOOD.  From here the battalion in conjunction with the rest of the Brigade withdrew to the high ground in I.26.b. where fresh positions were taken up commanding the slopes down from LOUPART WOOD to IRLES.  From this position fire was maintained on the enemy as he advanced down the slopes through G.28.c. & 2.7.d. & c. and round the valley from G.33. Central.  Having been able to fight his way through in the low ground on the battalion right, the enemy was able to enfilade the Brigade positions from the direction of MIRAUMONT.  In conjunction with troops on the left, therefore, the Brigade withdrew thro’ the 62nd Division to positions in the support line S.E of ACHIET-LE-PETIT, which were reached about 7.p.m.  Capt J.R. GRIFFITHS. LIEUTS. J.K. MALLALIEU, A.C.W. BENNETT-DAMPIER, 2nd Lts W. CARRUTHERS, C. RAY, E.C. FOX wounded in action, 2nd Lt G.H. VERITY missing, 2nd Lt H.M. OWEN died of wounds, officer casualties during the day.  The Transport and Depot arrived at IRLES about 10 a.m and proceeded to BUCQUOY.  At 3:30 p.m the Transport and Depot received orders to proceed to PUSIEUX, at 7.30 pm, orders to move to SOUASTRE were received and the Depot arrived in SOUASTRE about 2. a.m

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21 March 1918

Extract from war diary of 9th Bn, 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment

5am The Sounds of heavy barrage fire were heard and the back areas were shelled by the enemy H.V. Guns. A stand to was accordingly ordered and at 5.35 a.m an order to this effect was received from Brigade, and all preparations were made for the move to camps in accordance with Brigade and Battalion Instructions.

The names of the officers who were to go into action are shewn on App.J.213 (a) – 522 O/R was the fighting strength.

Zero hour for the move to camps was noon and the Battalion moved off to HERRICK CAMP at 12.20 p.m.  Battle equipment (bombs, additional S.A.A., tools, etc) were here issued to the men. On the order “move to Camp the 1st Line Transport moved with the Battalion.  The Depot remaining at BEAULENCOURT. [sic] At 7.p.m orders were issued for the Battalion to move up to GAIKA COPSE with the remainder of the Brigade in Reserve to the 57th Inf. Brigade which launched a counter attack against DOIGNIES (App J215 J216).  This move commenced at 7.15 pm and was completed by 8.30 p.m, the Battalion being on the S E edges of the Copse.  At 11.p.m a warning was received that the Brigade would move Northwestwards to occupy portions of the GREEN LINE in I.28.a, I.27.a, and I.21.c. At 11.45. pm Orders were received to rendezvous at DELSAUX FARM at 1.30 am

20 March 1918

Extract from war diary of 9th Bn, 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment

Beaulencourt, France

A tactical exercise with Tanks was carried out.

Orders for the relief of the 52nd Inf. Brigade by the 56th Inf. Brigade on the night of the 23rd/24th March were received.  6 O.R R/I arrived.

A warning was received from Brigade that the expected enemy attack would take place on the following morning (the 21st) according to statement of captured enemy officers and men.

29 January 1918

Extract from war diary of 9th Bn, 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment

Front line

The occupants of 1 dug-out R.2.b complained of sickness and eye troubles, and were all despatched to the dressing Station for treatment.  This dug-out, although cleared by fires & fanning the day before had become affected through the gas sinking into it from the top of the COVILLET RIDGE.

The Battn moved up at 6.30 pm into the same subsector of the front line and relieved the 8th Gloucesters (App J 170).  Relief was completed by 9.35 pm (App J 17).  Casualties nil.  Dispositions as stated on AA 23 (app J 170).  Protective patrols were sent out in the morning.  22 O.R. reinforcements arrived.  The tour passed very quickly & without the Battn sustaining any casualties.