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2nd Battle of Ypres, 1915



9th Apr 1915 Deadly Plan Revealed

21st Apr 1915 Gas Attack

22nd April 1915 Arms Tested

23rd April 1915 In Action  1st Battalion, Royal Scots are fighting at Sanctuary Wood, Zillebeke, Belgium in the Second Battle of Ypres.

24th Apr 1915 6th Squadron forced to retreat  Under heavy Germam shelling at Poperinghe, No 6 Squadron RFC were forced to move further back to join No.4 Squadron at Abeele Aerodrome. At around this time a scout flight comprising Martinsyde S1 and Bristol scout aircraft was added to the squadron to protect their reconnaissance planes.

24th Apr 1915 Germans use gas in Flanders  At 4 in the morning the Germans released a cloud of gas as a prelude to an attack on the Allied lines near Ypres. Despite international laws against the uses of gas in warfare, some German officials noted that only gas projectiles appeared to be specifically banned, and that no prohibition could be found against simply releasing deadly chemical weapons and allowing the wind to carry it to the enemy.

Holts Battlefield Guide


24th April 1915 On the March

25th of April 1915 

25th Apr 1915 Machine Gunners in Action

25th Apr 1915 Attack and Counter Attack

25th April 1915 On the March

26th April 1915 Enemy endeavouring to Break Through

26th Apr 1915 Under Shellfire

26th Apr 1915 Eye Witness Account

26th Apr 1915 Operational Order No. 12

27th Apr 1915 Artillery In Action

28th Apr 1915 Under Shellfire

29th Apr 1915 Letters Censored

30th Apr 1915 Heavy Bombardment

30th Apr 1915 Gas

1st May 1915 British in retreat  The general situation was worse than anyone knew. The gas attack had broken the line in the north of the Salient and the German guns were brought up to Pilckem Ridge. Polygon Wood was the most easterly position of the area and now it was developing into a bottle shaped zone, untenable for the 3rd Mons. To avoid the danger of being cut off at the neck of the zone and shorten the Line, the order was given to withdraw. The Line now ran just east of Hooge Chateau and Frezenberg, south of St Julien and converged onto the Yser Canal near Boesinghe and the trenches of the GHQ line crossed the main road just east of the Potizje Chateau. The front Line was now shortened by 5,000 yards and the Wood evacuated. The movement was started on the night of 1 May evacuating dumps and bringing back the guns. All ammunition and trench stores were removed as well. The whole operation was under the control of Welsh Officers, posted at the north west corner of the Wood and in telephone communication with the Brigade Headquarters.

1st May 1915 Infantry Attack

2nd May 1915 3rd Monmouths under Bombardment  On the 2nd May the 83 rd Brigade (29th Division) area was very heavily shelled by the Germans that many of the troops believed it impossible to get any worse. There were of course inevitable casualties after trenches and dugouts were hit. Sergeant A. Davies (3rd Monmouths) writing home to friends gave the following details of the days bombardment: "Our worst time started on May 2nd , when they gave it to us a bit hot. It was on that day that L/Cpls Reg Rumsey and Taylor got buried by a shell bursting on top of their dugout. We managed to get them out after a bit of a struggle, and I think Rumsey acted splendidly. If it had not been for him Taylor would have been dead. After getting his head and arms clear he would not think of anything else but getting Taylor out; in fact he set to at releasing him, and it was rather a good job, for when we got Taylor out he was at his last gasp"

3rd May 1915 3rd Monmouths at Potizje  The 3rd Mons evacuated Polygon Wood on the night of May 2nd/3rd and reformed on the new GHQ line at Potizje. A Company under Captain Baker, C Company under Captain Steel, B Company under Captain Gattie was stationed in the front line while D Company under Major Lewis stayed in reserve at Potizje. The evacuation of Polygon Wood and the occupation of the new front line was completed during the night of 3rd of May and the success of the movement was proved when at 5 am the following morning the enemy still fired onto the empty trenches. Then the Officers controlling the operation left and declared that in spite of a very laborious task the evacuation had been a complete success. Once here the troops had very little to do, the weather was foul, there was very little to eat and heavy shells were flying overhead into the city of Ypres.

4th May 1915 Tough fight on Frezenberg Ridge  The evening of May 4 th saw the beginning of the battalion's hardest trial and greatest achievement. The strain and stress was all over within a week, but during that period the 3rd Monmouth's were involved in some of the hardest fighting of the war. Suffering heavy casualties and though outnumbered by the enemy and without adequate artillery support held up the German attack at a crucial point of the line.

On this evening A company (Captain Baker) and C Company (Captain Steel) moved up into support trenches and dug-outs north of the road at the western foot of the Frezenberg Ridge. B Company (Captain Gattie) went up to reinforce the 1st York and Lancs in the front line on the right of the Brigade; and D Company (Major Lewis) remained in reserve at Potizje. The new front line, which had been hastily and poorly constructed, suffered severely from the bombardment. So bad did conditions become that both the 2nd East Yorks and the 5th KOYLI were compelled that night to dig a new line just behind the original one. Casualties had been heavy and the wounded were removed with great difficulty during the night, whilst the dead had to be buried where they fell.

5th May 1915 Hard Fighting  May 5th opened with a still more severe bombardment and the front line troops were reported as being in a very exhausted condition. Early in the morning C Company was called upon to reinforce the 2nd East Yorks on the south of the road. Captain Steel led half of C Company up to reinforce the front line. As they topped the ridge they were caught by German machine gun fire and suffered terrible casualties. Captain Steel was a doctor in civilian life and he set about attending the wounded as well as leading the advance. For this action he was awarded the Military Cross. One of the men in his company, Private AM Mitchell, wrote home: "Words utterly fail me to say what a hero Captain O.W.D. Steel was during that fearful struggle. From every person I meet they tell me the same tale. Under heavy shell and maxim fire he went out and fetched in wounded, bandaging them and if he doesn't deserve the VC no man on earth ought to get it." An hour later A company (under Captain R.A. Lewis) also tried to reinforce the front line and again suffered terrible casualties. Private I. Skidmore was awarded the DCM for attending to the casualties until he was so badly wounded himself that he could not carry on.

7th May 1915 Heavier Bombardment on Frezenberg Ridge  May 7 th opened with a heavier bombardment, which caused many casualties. There was nothing but the 27th and 28th Divisions between the enemy and Ypres but the British soldier proverbially does not know when he is beaten.

8th May 1915 Heavy Fighting in Ypres Salient  On the morning of 8th May, the 3rd Monmouths had three companies in the front line and one in support. Half a mile to the north the 1st Monmouth's were fighting with the 83rd Brigade. The German bombardment began at 5.30 am followed by the first infantry attack at 8.30. In the words of Pte W.H. Badham: "They started bombarding at the same time in the morning and….afterwards we could hear a long blast of a whistle, and the attack started. We were only a handful of men, and they came on in thousands, but we kept them at bay"

Private A.L. Devereux carried this story forward in a letter he wrote to his family a day or two after the battle: "Hundreds of them were put of action with shells and it left very few men to man the trenches. After, the Huns shelled all the country for a couple of miles…stoping any reinforcements from being brought up and thousands of the rabble charged our trenches in their favourite massed formation. The few boys that were left in our trenches showed then the kind of stuff Britain can turn out and thousands of the Germans were put out of action"

Almost immediately, the shelling started again and at 09.00am the Germans attacked again and were again driven back. The Germans realised that their attack was making no progress, and they fell back so that the artillery could return to its task on the front line trenches. By 9.10 am the bombardment was as intense as at any time that morning and there was little that the soldiers could do except find what little cover they could.

Orders reached the 3rd Monmouth's and 2nd King's Own from Brigade HQ about 10am to evacuate the front line trenches. Captain Baker began withdrawing his Company, but immediately the enemy opened up an intense machine gun fire, followed by shrapnel, which practically swept away the few survivors of A and D Companies. Captain Baker was killed a few yards behind the front line. The order apparently never reached Lt Reed and he and few men of A Company, with some machine gunners held on gallantly and resisted to the last. Lt Reed was finally killed and no officer of A Company was left, and only 13 survivors amongst the men could be mustered. D Company stuck it gallantly. They lost their only officer Captain J Lancaster. Every Sergeant in the company was killed and only 16 men answered the roll call next morning. Of the 500 men in A and D Companies only 29 were left. B Company (under Captain Gattie) throughout the battle was separated from the rest of the Battalion. They were in the front line in a wood near Red Lodge. Rations and letters came up regularly and one fortunate officer even received a tin of cooked sausages! What the war diary does not record is that the new trenches had been hastily prepared and it was not as deep or as wide as had been hoped for by those men retiring to it. One member of the 3rd Monmouths noted: "….when we occupied this new line of trenches we found them very badly made and up to our knees in water, and the poor men had no chance of getting any sleep unless they wished to i.e. down in the water".

So dawned the most critical day of the great battle, the 8th May, The 3rd Monmouth's lay astride the Zonnebeke road, the apex of the Salient, two companies in the front line with one in support and the fourth company not far away to the south. Half a mile to the north was their sister battalion the 1st Monmouthshire's in the 84th Brigade. Holding the position with them were their comrades of the 83rd Brigade, the nd Kings Own to the north and to the south the 1st KOYLI who relieved the 1st York and Lancs and B Coy. 3rd Monmouth's on the night of the 7th May. The Brigade had been in the line without relief since April 17th . Its numbers were greatly reduced, and the artillery behind were few in numbers and woefully short of ammunition. As indicating the desperate position of the British troops in respect to artillery support, it is now authoritatively stated that the heavy British guns during this period of the 2nd Battle of Ypres were limited to:- One 9.2 inch howitzer, Eight 60 pdrs, Four old six inch howitzers, Twelve obsolete 4.7 inch guns.

Against them the Germans brought up at least 260 heavy guns and howitzers. There was nothing except the Division between the enemy and Ypres on that day and they got as far as Verlorenhoek, but the British soldier proverbially does not know when he is beaten and the Germans were kept back somehow till fresh troops were brought up in the evening to fill the many gaps. The enemy on their side were all out to push through. They had guns on the high ground enfilading the British position and smothering our artillery, they had field guns well forward, and they had innumerable machine guns, and six divisions of their best and freshest troops, against the depleted ranks of the war-worn and weary 27 th and 28 th Divisions. Their bombardment opened up at 5.30.a.m. and the trenches lying on the forward slope were badly damaged and almost untenable.

The wood came under heavy shelling and Lt Groves and Lt Palmer were killed by a direct hit on their dug out. After two German attacks on the King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry in the front trenches, B Company charged across open ground to reinforce them. A dip in the ground favoured the advance and casualties were few, but Capt. Gardner was shot through the heart as he entered the trench, a great loss. He was one of the finest looking and best soldiers in the Battalion. 2/Lt. Paul was wounded at about the same time.

The first enemy infantry attack took place at 8.30.a.m. and was driven off. The bombardment re-opened and at 9.a.m. the enemy again attacked and were driven back. After a further hours intense shelling the front line was practically obliterated and the enemy found few survivors to hold up the attack. In A Coy 3rd Monmouths, Capt Baker and C.S.M. were killed and Lt Reed with a few survivors of his company held gallantly on and resisted to the last. This party and the machine gun section took heavy toll of the advancing enemy, but were finally overwhelmed by numbers. Lt. Reed was killed and no officer of A Coy was left and only 13 survivors amongst the men could be mustered. D Coy stuck it gallantly. They lost their only officer, Captain James Lancaster, beloved of all who knew him, and that fine type of Territorial soldier C.S.M. Lippiatt, who did such wonderful work training recruits almost single-handed at Abergavenny in August and September 1914. Every Sergeant in the company was killed and only 16 men answered the roll next morning. The machine-gun section were involved in this slaughter, and had one gun destroyed but one of the few survivors brought back the lock of the other.

Early in the day C Coy came into action in support, but little by little was forced back to Battalion HQ owing to the exposure of their flank from the north. Stragglers were coming down the road, so Col. Gough ordered Sergeant Jenkins to collect them in a trench in the rear, and for his fine services on this occasion coupled with the good work on the telephone; this old soldier received the DCM. This party and other remnants of the Battalion was led by Col. Gough in counter attack, but could only advance as far as the eastern edge of Frezenberg. In this advance R.S.M. Hatton was seriously wounded. He had accompanied the adjutant Capt. Ramsden, in many visits to the front line during the last terrible days and with him had often helped to stiffen the defence by cheery encouragement. He now refused to be carried back and was taken prisoner. His wounds were of such a nature that he was one of the first prisoners of war to be exchanged, but unhappily he died much regretted before the end of the war. He was a fine type of regular soldier from whom all ranks learnt much. After hanging onto this position for some time and holding up the advance, orders came at about 11.a.m. from the Brigade to retire on the GHQ line near Potijze.

Lt. McLean, M.O., 3rd Monmouth's and Lt.Marriott, M.O., 1st Monmouth's had established a dressing station just east of Verlorenhoek; at 11.a.m. they received orders to retire their detachments, but after sending back the stretcher bearers they found a number of wounded still coming back and so decided to carry on, till the enemy were practically in the village and Lt. McLean was wounded.

Just before mid-day the 2nd East Yorks were ordered to counter attack and after reaching Verlorenhoek with heavy casualties had to fall back on the G.H.Q. line. At 2.30.p.m. 1st York and Lancaster and 3rd Middlesex counter-attacked north and south of the railway, remnants of the 2nd East Yorks, 1st KOYLI, 2nd Kings Own, 3rd Monmouth's, 5th Kings Own going up into support. At 3.30.p.m. 2nd East Surreys , 3rd Royal Fusiliers arrived and were sent up in support. The counter attack, practically unsupported by artillery, made slow progress and by 5.30.p.m. was held up at a line running from Verlorenhoek south over the railway. This line was consolidated with fresh troops during the night and eventually became the approximate position of the front line until the British advance in 1917.

In the meantime the 3rd Monmouth Battalion with the exception of B Coy was withdrawn and marched back to huts at Vlamertinghe. B Coy throughout the battle was separated from the rest of the battalion. It reinforced 1st York and Lancs, coming under orders of the CO of that Battalion, and took over a trench on the extreme right of the Brigade and Division from a company of K.R.R.C. 27 th Division. The next unit on the right was the “Princess Pats”. The position was in front of the wood near Red Lodge, about 300 yards south of the Roulers railway. The trench was newly dug like the rest of the line and not deep. It was also on a forward slope and the only communication trench was full of mud and impassable. Further, it lay along a lane with a hedge on one side and a line of poplars on the other, so that it was an admirable mark for the enemy's artillery observing on Westhoek Ridge. On May 5 th and in a smaller degree on May 6 th and 7 th the enemy bombarded the trench, but it was so narrow and well traversed that the damage was comparatively slight and casualties not as heavy as might be expected from such a bombardment. Sgt. Nash, a Territorial with much service, was killed on the 6th .

The attack in front was beaten off and the afternoon in the immediate neighbourhood proved quiet, but there was a great danger of the company being surrounded.. The P.P.C.L.I on the right were forced back to their support trench and on the left to the north of the wood there was a large gap and both flanks were more or less in the air. Accordingly Capt. Gattie went to the HQ of the Rifle Brigade, near Bellewaarde Lake, for reinforcements to protect the exposed flanks, especially to the north, and was able to guide them as far as the P.P.C.L.I. support trench, but machine gun fire prevented them from advancing further until dark. Meanwhile a party of the Monmouth's and KOYLI were in fact in advance of all other British troops with both flanks exposed. Towards the evening the bullets of our troops counter-attacking up the railway were beginning to take them in the rear, so that it was clearly impossible to hold on.

The party was now completely cut off from its own HQ, so Capt. Gattie proceeded to Brigade HQ for orders, leaving the remains of B Company under 2/Lt. Somerset. Under cover of darkness the men of both units filed out of the right end of the trench and were sorted out, and the men in the wood were ordered to re-join. This party had received no orders to advance in the morning and had been left behind. The senior soldier, Cpl. Sketchley, had kept them together during the day and now led 30 men out to join the Company. The enemy attack up the railway on his left had come so near that his party had taken a prisoner and they now brought him with them. Cpl. Sketchley received the D.C.M. for his great initiative and pluck at this period. Capt. Mallinson was awarded the D.S.O., for his fine leadership in maintaining this position and finally in extracting his party from a very difficult position. The enemy did not attempt to harass the withdrawal and the whole mixed party got safely back to Rifle Brigade HQ. After a halt there they proceeded across the railway to the Potijze road intending to rejoin the Brigade at Vlamertinghe.

9th May 1915 Heavy Fighting in Ypres Salient  At the GHQ line a Staff Officer ordered the party from the 3rd Monmouths to the trenches again, so just as dawn was breaking on the 9th they turned off the road, near the trench occupied on May 4th and advanced across open fields to the front line. There was only room on their immediate front for the KOYLI so the Monmouthshire party occupied some little dugouts a hundred yards in rear. Here the remains of B Coy spent the day, among them two N.C.O.s who later in the war made the supreme sacrifice, Sgt. Lewis and Sgt. T.Howells, that fine old soldier who won the D.C.M. in the South African War and a bar to it in the Great War. Sgt. Owen of C Coy joined the party during the day, also two men, who were shelled out of buildings on the left. The enemy paid no attention to B Coy., probably did not know of their existence, but fired heavy stuff overhead into YPRES all day. It was a day of inaction that tried the nerves far more than a day of hard fighting. Luckily it was not a day of starvation too, for early in the morning some foragers found a broken down water-cart and bread and tinned honey dumped in the road.

The casualties had been enormous and the Brigade diary records these as being 128 Officers and 4379 men killed, wounded and missing.

9th May 1915 Hard fighting on Frezenberg Ridge  Under cover of darkness, the remnants of B Coy 3rd Monmouths began to withdraw to rejoin the rest of the battalion. Just as they got back to the GHQ line at dawn on May 9th a staff officer ordered them back into the front line.

10th May 1915 3rd Monmouths withdrawn from line  B Coy 3rd Monmouths were finally withdrawn on the morning of May 10th and marched back to Vlamertinghe where they rejoined what was left of the rest of the battalion.

11th May 1915 3rd Monmouths in the front line  On May 11th , the 3rd Mons briefly moved back to the front line where the commanding officer Lt Col Gough was wounded. Major Bridge took command and the battalion moved out of the line to bivouacs at Poperinghe. Here they found piles of parcels from home, which it had not been possible to deliver during the battle – most of them were addressed, to men who could no longer receive them.

11th May 1915 3rd Monmouths at Frezenberg  On May 11th, the 3rd Mons briefly moved back to the front line where the commanding officer Lt Col Gough was wounded. Major Bridge took command and the battalion moved out of the line to bivouacs at Poperinghe. Here they found piles of parcels from home, which it had not been possible to deliver during the battle, most of them were addressed, to men who could no longer receive them. Edmonds in the Official History of the Great War describes the action of B Company 3rd Monmouth'ss and D Company 1st KOYLI in holding the frontline at Frezenberg as one of the greatest feat of arms of the whole war. Casualties between April 22 nd - May 8 th had been horrendous. Of the 1020 soldiers of the 3rd Battalion the Monmouthshire Regiment who had arrived in France in February 1915 only 134 were left alive on the morning of May 10th. Stragglers reported over the next few days and the strength rose to about 250 in total. On May 14th , what was left of the battalion was moved to the village of Winnezeele in France for a period of rest and reorganisation.

13th May 1915 Counter attack

13th May 1915 Cavalry in action

13th May 1915 

13th May 1915 Heavy Casualties

21st May 1915 3rd Monmouths rest at Winnezeele  On the 21st May during the 3rd Monmouth battalions rest period at Winnezeele the GOC in C Sir John French, inspected the brigade and made the following speech, with which this chapter on the 3rd Monmouth's time in Ypres may fittingly close.

“I came over to say a few words to you and to tell you how much I, as Commander-in-Chief of this Army, appreciate the splendid work that you have all done during the recent fighting. You have fought the Second Battle of Ypres , which will rank amongst the most desperate and hardest fights of the war. You may have thought because you were not attacking the enemy, that you were not helping to shorten the War. On the contrary, by your splendid endurance and bravery you have done a great deal to shorten it. In this the Second Battle of Ypres , the Germans tried by every means in their power to get possession of that unfortunate town. They concentrated large forces of troops and artillery, and further than this, they had recourse to the mean and dastardly practice, and hitherto unheard of in civilised warfare, namely the use of asphyxiating gases. You have performed the most difficult, arduous, and terrific task of withstanding a stupendous bombardment by heavy artillery, probably the fiercest artillery fire ever directed against troops, and warded off the enemy's attacks with magnificent bravery. By your steadiness and devotion both the German plans were frustrated. He was unable to get possession of Ypres-if he had done this, he would probably have succeeded in preventing neutral powers from intervening-and he was also unable to distract us from delivering our attack in conjunction with the French in the Arras-Armentieres district. Had you failed to repulse his attacks and made it necessary for more troops to be sent to your assistance, our operations in the south might not have been able to take place and would certainly not have been as successful as they have been. Your colours have many famous names emblazoned on them, but none will be more famous or more well deserved than that of the Second Battle of Ypres . I want you one and all to understand how thoroughly I realise and appreciate what you have done. I with to thank you, each officer, non-commissioned officer, and man for the services you have rendered by doing your duty so magnificently, and I am sure that your Country will thank you too”.

To act as a counterweight to the grandeur of French's speech the content of the following letter should be Ypres on the troops concerned. Captain O.W.D. Steel, then commanding C Company, 3rd Monmouths, who had suffered so badly during the fighting on Frezenberg Ridge, wrote the letter, published on 21st May 1915. It runs: "I would be obliged if you would insert this short note in the next edition of your newspaper. It is almost impossible to write to the relative of every man of my company who have suffered, partly because the losses have been so severe, and partly because it is difficult to trace all cases, but if anyone would care to write to me, I will endeavour to supply all available information. May I express my deepest sympathy with all those who have suffered" .

This was the human effect of the war and of the Second Battle of Ypres and it was something that was to be felt well into the summer of 1915 as casualty lists continued to be published. Second Ypres had been a costly and grim battle for all those involved.

22nd May 1915 The Amalgamated Monmouthshire Battalions   After the heavy casualties of the 2nd Battle of Ypres, the three Monmouthshire Battalions barely mustered the strength of one Battalion; on May 22nd orders were received for the remains of the three battalions to amalgamate under the command of Major WS Bridge.

24th May 1915 The Battle of Bellewaarde Ridge  At 0245 on 24 May (Whit Monday), a ferocious German artillery bombardment slammed down on British V Corps front. The clamour of shells, machine-guns and rifle fire was accompanied by a simultaneous discharge of chlorine gas on almost the entire length of the Cameronians in reserve dugouts, the Bluff, Ypres, March 1915 British line. German infantry assaulted in its wake. Although the favourable wind had alerted the British trench garrison to the likelihood of a gas attack the proximity of the opposing trenches and speed of the enemy assault meant many defenders failed to don their respirators quickly enough and large numbers were overcome. But the British defence rallied and the attackers were repelled by small arms fire – except in the north, where Mouse Trap Farm was immediately overrun, and in the south where (by 1000) German infantry broke into the British line north and south of Bellewaarde Lake. The centre of the line between these gaps held fast all day.

Heroic efforts were made to retrieve the situation at Mouse Trap Farm before it was decided, that evening, to withdraw to a more defensible line. The German break-in around Bellewaarde Lake prompted the commitment of Corps reserve troops – but their arrival took time and the depleted front line battalions had to wait until the early evening before the weakened 84th Brigade was able to attack and turn the enemy out of Witte Poort Farm. Following the belated arrival of 80th Brigade a joint night counter-attack was made after 2300; this assault, in bright moonlight, was a disaster and both 84th and 80th Brigades suffered heavy casualties. In the early hours of the morning the battle quietened. The following day saw a reduction in shelling and no attempts by the Germans to renew the offensive.

24th May 1915 9th Lancers entrenched

24th May 1915 Germans attack Ypres  On 24th May the Germans launched a fresh bombardment and infantry attack on Ypres and the Monmouths again found themselves in the front line, this time at the infamous "Hellfire Corner". This marked the last serious attempt of the enemy to push through in the 2nd Battle of Ypres. At about 8 p.m. a Highland Battalion relieved the Monmouthshire's.

24th May 1915 4th Northumberlands endure gas attack

24th May 1915 9th Durhams suffer gas

24th May 1915 Gas attack

25th May 1915 Under Attack

26th May 1915 In the Firing Line

29th May 1915 Heavy Fighting

30th Jul 1915 Germans use flamethrower  In an attack at 03:15 in the front line at the Hooge Crater, the Germans employed a flame thrower against troops of the 8th Battalion Rifle Brigade and 7th Kings Royal Rifle Corps.

9th Aug 1915 Successful Attack

 

30th Jul 1915 Under Attack

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Those known to have served in

2nd Battle of Ypres, 1915

during the Great War 1914-1918.

  • Adams Charles George. Pte. (d.1st July 1915)
  • Allabyrne Edward. Pte. (d.23rd Apr 1915)
  • Allsopp Thomas. Pte.
  • Anson Alexander. CSM.
  • Aspell Patrick. Pte. (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Atkinson John. Sgt.
  • Atkinson John. Field Sgt.
  • Auger Fortunat. Pte. (d.26th Mar 1916)
  • Baird James. Pte. (d.11th May 1915)
  • Baker George William. Gnr.
  • Bannon Patrick. Sgt. (d.25th Apr 1915)
  • Barnes Jeremiah. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Barnes Owen. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Bateman Frank. Pte. (d.10th Sep 1918)
  • Battrick George. Cpl.
  • Bayliss Harry. Pte. (d.11th May 1915)
  • Beal Percy. Pte. (d.9th Aug 1915)
  • Beal Percy. Pte. (d.9th Aug 1915)
  • Behan John. Pte. (d.25th May 1915)
  • Behan Michael. Pte. (d.3rd Dec 1916)
  • Behan Michael William. CQMS (d.8th Oct 1917)
  • Behan Patrick. Pte. (d.15th Jul 1915)
  • Bell Ray Lancaster. 2nd Lt. (d.17th May 1915)
  • Bergin Joseph. SSgt.
  • Berry John. Pte. (d.24th Sep 1915)
  • Best William George. Pte. (d.2nd May 1916)
  • Bilton James. Pte. (d.24th Apr 1915)
  • Bishop Peter. Pte. (d.20th May 1915)
  • Black Thomas. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Boland Peter. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Booth George. Pte. (d.18th Apr 1915 )
  • Booth John Partington. Pte. (d.6th Nov 1915)
  • Boughey Thomas. Pte. (d.11th May 1915)
  • Bourhill Robert. Sgt. (d.23rd Mar 1915)
  • Bowen-Colthurst Robert MacGregor. Capt. (d.15th Mar 1915)
  • Boyce John. Pte. (d.11th May 1915)
  • Boyce John. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Boyle Henry. L/Cpl. (d.13th May 1915)
  • Bridger Bertie William. Pte. (d.18th Jan 1915)
  • Broadley James. Pte.
  • Brown Alexander Patrick. Pte. (d.10th May 1915)
  • Brown Edward Wilkin. Dvr.
  • Buffey Wilfred. (d.13th Apr 1915)
  • Burchell Jonathan. Pte. (d.24th Sep 1915)
  • Calder Peter. Pte. (d.22nd May 1915)
  • Campbell Donald. Pte. (d.23rd May 1915)
  • Carney John. L/Sgt.
  • Carr John. A/Cpl. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Chapman Cecil. Pte. (d.21st Apr 1915)
  • Chapman Horace J. Pte. (d.10th May 1915)
  • Charles George. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Chavasse Noel Godfrey. Capt. (d.4th Aug 1917)
  • Cleveland Joseph John. Pte. (d.19th May 1915)
  • Connelly John. Pte. (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Conroy John. Pte. (d.17th Apr 1915)
  • Conroy William Henry. Pte (d. 7th July 1916)
  • Constantine Robert. Sgt. (d.15th Sep 1916)
  • Cook Herbert. Pte. (d.9th Apr 1917)
  • Cooper John. Rflmn. (d.28th July 1915)
  • Copeland William Alan. 2nd Lt. (d.25th Apr 1915)
  • Cormack Kenneth. Pte. (d.15th May 1915)
  • Costain William Edward. Pte. (d.28th Apr 1915)
  • Crawford David Paul. Pte. (d.27th Mar 1915)
  • Culver Alfred Edward. Pte. (d.19th April 1915)
  • Dast Mir. Jmdr.
  • Davis William J.. Capt. (d.31st July 1915)
  • Davison Ralph Fenwick. Pte.
  • Day Alfred John. Pte. (d.10th Feb 1915)
  • Denham William. Pte. (d.26th April 1915)
  • Dent Howard. Lt-Col.
  • Dickson Charles. L/Cpl. (d.23rd Mar 1915)
  • Dillon Robert. Pte. (d.4th June 1915)
  • Donaldson Alexander Allan. L/Cpl. (d.11th May 1915)
  • Dougan William. Pte. (d.17th Feb 1915)
  • Dumma James. Pte. (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Dunmore John Henry. Pte. (d.20th Apr 1915)
  • Dyer Daniel. Pte. (d.14th Oct 1915)
  • Early Richard. Pte. (d.15th May 1915)
  • Edwards Henry. Pte.
  • Egan James Patrick. Pte. (d.14th Apr 1917)
  • Elvidge Laurence. 2nd Lt. (d.9th Aug 1916)
  • Emslie William. Pte. (d.10th May 1915)
  • Farquharson Leslie Shaw. Capt. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Fennick James. Pte. (d.18th May 1915)
  • Fenton John. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Fielding John William. Pte. (d.15th Aug 1917)
  • Fisher Fred. L/Cpl. (d.24th Apr 1915)
  • Fisher Frederick. L/Corp (d.23 April 1915)
  • FitzClarence Charles. Brig.Gen. (d.12th Nov 1914)
  • Florence Adam. Pte. (d.9th May 1915)
  • Forrester William. Pte. (d.12th Jan 1915)
  • Fox Freddy. Pte. (d.23rd Apr 1915)
  • French Charles Stockley. Lt. (d.25th April 1915)
  • Frith Frederick. Pte.
  • Garnett William Owen. Pte. (d.5th May 1915)
  • Gibson Walter Young. Pte. (d.20th May 1915)
  • Gogarty Christopher. Pte. (d.30th March 1918)
  • Goodall James. Pte.
  • Gough George. Pte. (d.19th Dec 1915)
  • Gough George. Pte. (d.19th Dec 1915)
  • Grainger Herbert. Pte.
  • Grant Robert Alexander. Pte. (d.23rd Apr 1915)
  • Graut Herbert Mallett. L/Cpl. (d.3 May 1915)
  • Greenslade Ernest. Sgt.
  • Gregory William Edward. Pte.
  • Gridley Charles. Pte. (d.2nd Aug 1915)
  • Haigh Francis Edward. Pte. (d.1st July 1915)
  • Hall Frederick William. CSM. (d.25th Apr 1915)
  • Hall Fredrick Thomas. Pte.
  • Hallowes Rupert Price. 2nd Lt. (d.30th Sep 1915)
  • Hanning James. Pte. (d.20th Apr 1915)
  • Harper Carl Horace. Pte.
  • Harrington Arthur George. RSM. (d.28th April 1915)
  • Harrison John William Scott. Pte.
  • Hart David Hynd. Sgt. (d.2nd Mar 1916)
  • Havinden George Smith. Pte.
  • Henderson Thomas. L/Cpl. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Hendry Thomas. Pte. (d.22nd Apr 1915)
  • Hepburn Andrew Campbell. Cpl. (d.24th Apr 1915)
  • Hicks Frederick R. Lt.Col. (d.12th Jun 1915)
  • Hiney John. Pte. (d.27th Apr 1915)
  • Hislop William. Pte. (d.25th Apr 1915)
  • Holmes William. Pte. (d.16th June 1915)
  • Holsgrove Thomas. Pte. (d.10th May 1915)
  • Horner Joseph Richard. L/Cpl. (d.17th Apr 1915)
  • Hughes Daniel. Pte. (d.22nd Oct 1914)
  • Hunter Daniel. Pte. (d.17th Apr 1915)
  • Hunter Robert. Pte. (d.23rd Mar 1915)
  • Hussey Joseph. Sgt. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Hutson Thomas Alfred. Acting Bomb. (d.19th December 1915)
  • Jack Gardner. L/Cpl. (d.30th Apr 1915)
  • Jacques William. Pte. (d.8th May 1914)
  • Jay Frederick A.. Pte. (d.23rd Mar 1915)
  • Johnston Edward John Farquharson. Capt. (d.12th Apr 1915)
  • Jones Henry. Pte.
  • Jukes Frederick. Pte.
  • Kerr Thomas. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • King John. Pte, (d.9th Aug 1915)
  • King Lucas Henry St. Aubyn. Lt. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Knowles Thomas Walter. Rflmn. (d.31st Jul 1915)
  • Knox Ralph. Pte. (d.14th May 1915)
  • Lambert James. Sgt. (d.18th Jan 1915)
  • Lambert Peter. (d.9th May 1915)
  • Lamont Robert. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Lauder George Herbert. L/Cpl. (d.25th Nov 1917)
  • Lawrence William. Rflmn.
  • Leash Harold Thomas. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Leech James Thomas. Pte. (d.28th Apr 1916)
  • Legard Charles. Capt.
  • Legard Geoffrey Phillip. Lt. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Lomas John Thomas. Cpl. (d.19th Oct 1915)
  • London Frederick William. Rfm. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Lucie James. Pte. (d.23rd April 1915)
  • Lynn John. Pte. (d.2nd May 1915)
  • Machin Raymond. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Margrove Frederick George. Pte. (d.2nd Nov1917)
  • Marr Archibald. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Marriage Andrew. Rfmn. (d.28th Aug 1915)
  • Marshall Malcolm. Pte. (d.20th May 1915)
  • Martin Francis. Pte. (d.5th May 1915)
  • Mason James. Pte. (d.19th December 1915)
  • McBain Peter. Pte. (d.10th Apr 1915)
  • McDonald Edward. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • McDonald Patrick. Pte. (d.9th May 1915)
  • McGachie James. Pte. (d.14th May 1915)
  • McGee Bernard. Pte. (d.18th Jan 1915)
  • McGhee John. Pte. (d.22nd Apr 1915)
  • McGow H.. Pte. (d.1st June 1915)
  • McGuire John. Pte. (d.30th Apr 1915)
  • McLean David Aitken. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • McLennan John. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • McLoughlin John. L/Cpl. (d.7th May 1915)
  • McMillan John. Cpl. (d.21st Apr 1915)
  • McNulty James. Pte. (d.15th May 1915)
  • McVitie William Johnston. L/Sgt. (d.25th Sep 1915)
  • Melville Abert. Pte. (d.16th Jun 1915)
  • Melville James. Cpl. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Milne William. Pte. (d.23rd Apr 1915)
  • Milton Joseph John. Pte. (d.16th Sept 1916)
  • Monaghan Frank. Pte. (d.22nd Feb 1915)
  • Moore James. Pte. (d.2nd March 1915)
  • Mullen Thomas. Pte. (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Mulroy Martin Andrew. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Mumford Joseph. Pte. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Murphy John. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Murray Thomas. Pte. (d.11th May 1915)
  • Myers James Thomas. Pte. (d.3rd March 1915)
  • Neil William. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Ness Richard. Pte. (d.9th May 1915)
  • Neville Thomas V.T. Thacker. Capt. (d.13 May 1915)
  • Nixon James. Pte. (d.28th April 1915)
  • Norris George Charles. Pte. (d.18th Apr 1915)
  • O'Brien Daniel. Pte. (d.17th June 1915)
  • O'Brien James. Pte. (d.16th Jan 1915)
  • O'Brien William James. Pte. (d.26th May 1915)
  • O'Kelly Henry Arundell de Pentheny. Lt. (d.4th May 1915)
  • O'Neill George. Pte. (d.18th Jan 1915)
  • Page George Clarence. Cpl.
  • Page Harold James. Capt.
  • Paintin Shayler. Sgt. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Payne Archibald Mark. (d.1st Jul 1916)
  • Pearson Edward. Pte. (d.26th May 1915)
  • Pecker Henry Cyril. 2nd Lt. (d.20th Apr 1915)
  • Piggin Robert. Rfmn. (d.8th Sep 1915)
  • Pooley Thomas. Pte (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Powell Leonard Thomas. Rfmn. (d.26th Oct 1915)
  • Quick Stuart Henry. Gnr.
  • Randall Bertie Sumner. Pte. (d.16th August 1915)
  • Randall Edward John. Pte. (d.30th Sep 1915)
  • Reilly Patrick. Pte. (d.22nd Apr 1915)
  • Rennie Charles. Pte. (d.11th Apr 1915)
  • Rice Alfred Thomas. Pte. (d.18th Jun 1916)
  • Riddell Albert Henry. Pte.
  • Ridgway Benjamin Wilfred. Pte. (d.30th July 1916)
  • Roberts Albert John. Sgt.
  • Roberts William W.. Pte. (d.29th May 1916)
  • Robinson Harold. Pte. (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Robinson Percival. Pte. (d.29th May 1915)
  • Rock Patrick Joseph. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Scott David Cousins. Pte. (d.22nd Apr 1915)
  • Scully Michael. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Shaw Alonza. Pte. (d.4th May 1915)
  • Shiels Alexander. Pte.
  • Sines James. Pte. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Smith Arthur. Pte. (d.16th Sep 1916)
  • Smith William Thomas. L/Cpl. (d.28th Apr 1915)
  • South John Brindley. Pte. (d.29th Sep 1915)
  • Stark Martin. Pte. (d.14th May 1915)
  • Storey James. Pte. (d.18th Jun 1915)
  • Story Arthur. Sgt. (d.17th Feb 1915)
  • Taylor Francis Cyril. Rflmn. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Thackerey Frederick Rennell . Lt. (d.18th April 1915)
  • Thompson George. Pte. (d.26th Apr 1915)
  • Thompson Thomas. Pte. (d.1st Feb 1915)
  • Tierney Peter.
  • Timms Joseph. Pte. (d.7th Dec 1915)
  • Todd Charles. Pte.
  • Todman Walter. Pte. (d.17th Feb 1915)
  • Trinder George. Pte. (d.6th May 1915)
  • Vayro Thomas. Sgt
  • Verschoyle Francis Stuart. 2nd Lt. (d.25th April 1915)
  • Vie Francis George. Pte. (d.7th June 1915)
  • Viner John. Pte.
  • Wadlow Alfred. Act/Cpl. (d.3rd May 1915)
  • Wake Thomas Henry. Pte. (d.26th April 1915)
  • Wake Wilfred Hereward. Pte. (d.26th April 1915)
  • Wall John Henry. Pte. (d.3rd July 1916)
  • Wallace Thomas. Cpl. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Wallace William. Pte. (d.16th June 1915)
  • Waller Herbert. Pte. (d.26th April 1915)
  • Walsh Arthur. Pte.
  • Warman Francis. Pte. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Warner Edward. Pte. (d.2nd May 1915)
  • Watson John. Pte. (d.12th May 1915)
  • Watson-Armstrong William John Montagu. Capt.
  • Wells Alfred George. Cpl. (d.26th Jun 1917)
  • Wells Edwin. Pte. (d.10th Jan 1916)
  • Welsh James. Pte. (d.24th May 1915)
  • Wetherell John Edward. Sgt.
  • Wild Ernest Sidney. Pte. (d.15th May 1915)
  • Wilkes Walter Joseph. Pte. (d.9th Aug 1916)
  • Wilmot Albert Edward. (d.19th May 1915)
  • Wilson Joseph Harold. A/Sgt.
  • Wiltshire William E.. Cpl. (d.9th Aug 1916)
  • Wishart W. G.. Sgt. (d.9th Apr 1915)
  • Woodhouse William. Dvr. (d.28th April 1915)
  • Woplin Frederick Harvey. Sgt. (d.12th April 1915)
  • Wright Joseph. Pte. (d.21st Feb 1915)
  • Wright Thomas. Pte. (d.8th May 1915)
  • Young Arthur Stanley. Pte. (d.10th Jun 1915)
  • Young John. L/Cpl. (d.30th Apr 1915)
  • Young N. M.. Lt. (d.23rd Apr 1915)
  • Young Robert. Cpl.

The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List



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Sep 2017

    Please note we currently have a backlog of submitted material, our volunteers are working through this as quickly as possible and all names, stories and photos will be added to the site. If you have already submitted a story to the site and your UID reference number is higher than 235634 your submission is still in the queue, please do not resubmit without contacting us first.

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Did you know? We also have a section on World War Two. and a Timecapsule to preserve stories from other conflicts for future generations.






Want to know more about 2nd Battle of Ypres, 1915?


There are:52 articles tagged 2nd Battle of Ypres, 1915 available in our Library





Recomended Reading.

Available at discounted prices.



Holt's Pocket Battlefield Guide to Ypres and Passchendaele

Tonie Holt & Valmai Holt


Covering the important WW1 Battles of Ypres, including the notorious Passchendaele, this guidebook takes readers on a historic trip through some of the well-known and most important sites of the area. This book, part of a new series of guides, is designed conveniently in a small size, for those who have only limited time to visit, or who are simply interested in as an introduction to the historic battlefields, whether on the ground or from an armchair. They contain selections from the Holts' more detailed guides of the most popular and accessible sites plus hand tourist information, capturing the essential features of the Battles. The book contains many full colour maps and photographs and detailed instructions on what to see and where to visit.
Major and Mrs. Holt's Concise Guide to the Western Front - North

Tonie Holt & Valmai Holt


Mons; Le Cateau; 1st Ypres, Neuve Chapelle, 2nd Ypres; Loos; Aisne/Chemin des Dames; Verdun, The Somme, Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele; Cambrai; Kaiser's Offensive; St Mihiel/Meuse-Argonne; Hindenburg Line Following in the Holts' series of five best-selling Battlefield Guides comes this Guide to 15 of the First World War's most significant battles of the Western Front. Whether travelling on the ground or in the mind the reader is carefully and concisely guided through the Western Front with a mixture of succinct military history, cameo memories, poetry and informed opinion - as well as careful travel directions. Each battlefield has a brief Summary of the Battle, the Opening Moves, a description of What Happened and a Battlefield Tour of the most salient features, accompanied by a sketch map and photographs of the battlefield today. There are sections on Tourist Information and War Graves Organisations and a sketch map on the end papers puts the battlefields in Perspective. This book conti
1915 : The Death of Innocence

Lyn MacDonald


By the end of 1914, the battered British forces were bogged down, yet hopeful that promised reinforcements and spring weather would soon lead to a victorious breakthrough. A year later, after appalling losses at Aubers Ridge, Loos, Neuve Chapelle, Ypres and faraway Gallipoli, fighting seemed set to go on for ever. Drawing on extensive interviews, letters and diaries, this book brilliantly evokes the soldiers' dogged heroism, sardonic humour and terrible loss of innocence through 'a year of cobbling together, of frustration, of indecision'. Over two decades' research puts Lyn Macdonald among the greatest popular chroniclers of the First World War. Here, from the poignant memories of participants, she has once again created an unforgettable slice of military history. This is an excellent account of 1915, the year when gas was used for the first time, Gallipoli became infamous and time and again thousands of men died, on both sides, for little gain. The interleaving of first hand acc
More information on:

1915 : The Death of Innocence


The German Army in World War I: 1914-15 Pt. 1

Nigel Thomas


."..beautifull illustrated and the eight color plates show off a variety of WWI uniforms/equipment that are appropriate for armies that fought in the RCW...fills a very necessary spot in my wargaming library... As always, Osprey books form the first line of any 'attack' on a new period of study!" -"HMG Reviewing Stand" Product Description This is the first of three books that study the German Army of World War I in great detail. They give a comprehensive study of the organisation, uniforms, insignia and equipment of the Imperial German army - in practice the combined armies of Prussia, Bavaria, Saxony and Wurttemberg. This first volume covers the troops who fought at Mons, Arras, and 1st Ypres in 1914; in winter 1914; at Neuve Chappelle, 2nd Ypres, Artois and the Argonne, 1915; and in East Prussia and Poland, 1914-15. It reflects the impact of the first period of trench warfare on the uniforms worn at the outbreak of war.
The Confusion of Command: The Memoirs of Lieutenant-General Sir Thomas D'Oyly 'Snowball' Snow 1914 -1918

Dan Snow & Mark Pottle


The enemy has got to be fought everywhere and hard... Everything is going very well indeed and no one minds the losses as long as we are moving. The never-before-published papers of General Sir Thomas D Oyly Snow provide a remarkable insight into the mindset of the Great War commanders. Despite being severely injured during the first Battle of the Marne when his horse fell and rolled over him, cracking his pelvis Snow served at some of the most important battles of the Western Front. His memoirs include the battle of Loos, the second battle of Ypres, the battles of Arras and Cambrai, the retreat from Mons and was responsible for the diversionary attack on Gommecourt on 1 July 1916, the first day of the Somme. This volume is comprised of vivid extracts from contemporary notes that only an eyewitness can offer coupled with frank postwar reflections that show the wisdom of hindsight and perspective, which brings an open awareness of military folly. D Oyly Snow died in London, aged 82, on
The Fighting Pioneers - The Story of the 7th Battalion DLI

Clive Dunn


Story of the 7th Battalion Durham Light Infantry. With the creation of the Territorial Force in 1908 the battalion was re-designated as the 7th Battalion. It went to France in April 1915 with the rest of the Northumbrian Division seeing action almost immediately at the Second battle of Ypres. In November 1915 the battalion was picked to become the divisional pioneers. The 1/7 Battalion suffered 600 fatalities. In 1920 when the Territorial Army was reformed it was re-raised in its original role as infantry. The story concludes on 10 December 1936 when the 7th Battalion Durham Light Infantry became the 47th (Durham Light Infantry) A.A. Battalion R.E. (T.A.), whose personnel went on to serve in the Second World War.




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