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11th April 1918 - The Great War, Day by Day - The Wartime Memories Project

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The Wartime Memories Project - The Great War - Day by Day

11th April 1918

On this day:

  • 9th Royal Irish Fusiliers endure shelling   9th Btn. (North Irish Horse) the Royal Irish Fusiliers defend Kemmel to Messines Ridge. Headquarters at Stinking Farm. Heavy enemy shelling.

    War Diaries

  • 5th South Wales Borderers in action   On this date B Coy of the 5th South Wales Borderers were fighting in the area of the Wytschaete- Messines Road in the Ypres sector. During the action they lost 13 men killed. On this very day Haig issued his " backs to the wall" special order.

  • 11th Apr 1918 An Officer's Diary

  • Minnenwerfers in Action   During the early morning, the Bosche established his machine guns in the outskirts of Pont du Nieppe and became very active. Also his Minnenwerfer trench mortars opened up on us about 11am., assisted by field guns at close range.

    At about 1pm., a party of enemy approached the trench of 6th West Riding Regt 'B' company, working up an old trench and sunken road. Owing to disgraceful behaviour on the part of some N.F.s, who ran out to meet him with their hands up, the enemy entered our trench. Captain Clough was wounded through the face and 2nd. Lieutenant Shaw was killed in attempting to turn out the Bosche. Two platoons of 'C' Company were despatched along the trench from left to right but, having no bench, were not able to dislodge the enemy, as it was impossible to get out of the trench owing to incessant machine gun fire. A block was established and a refused(?) right flank was made by a platoon of 'C' Company, who kept in touch with the 2nd. East Lancs. on the railway, some ground being given by them. Shelling and trench mortar on our line continued to be very intensive, especially in support and back areas. During morning and early afternoon, 2nd. Lieutenant Stewart was killed by rifle fire and Lieutenant Bain was wounded by a machine gun bullet.

    At about 4pm., some No. 5 Grenades were secured and plans were made to drive the Bosche out of our trenches. While these plans were being, the enemy commenced to work his way further down our trench. He was therefore attacked across the open from the rear and finally ejected, leaving about 20 dead and 1 prisoner in our hands. 2nd. Lieutenant Baker was seriously wounded and Sergeant Burrows was killed in this enterprise. A machine gun team of the 34th. Division rendered valuable assistance and 71064 Private Womersley, 'B' Company, 34th. Machine Gun Battalion, behaved particularly well and, although wounded severely in the arm, remained at his gun and tried to continue firing. The C. O. rallied the men and went forward at the head of the attacking party. Captain Ogston, 2nd. Lieutenant Baker and 2nd. Lieutenant Whitehead led their men splendidly.

    At 7pm., orders were received to withdraw platoons down the Bailleul road. By 11.30pm., the battalion was successfully withdrawn and bivouacked at crossroads just south of Bailleul (map reference S27 centre, sheet 28.) Groups(?) were pushed out.

    Casualties on this day for 6th Battalion West Riding Regt were Captain S. H. Clough (Wounded), Lieutenant P. H. Bain (wounded), 2nd. Lt. H. F. Baker (Wounded), 2nd. Lt. C. R. Shaw (Killed in Action), 2nd. Lt. G. Stewart (Killed in Action), 2nd. Lt. A. M. Whitehead (Wounded at Duty), 300189 Sergeant J. W. Booth (Wounded), 266723 Sergeant G. W. Burrows (Killed in Action), 266083 Sergeant H. Smith (Killed in Action), 265298 Sergeant A. Stott (Killed in Action), 265924 Lance Sergeant H. Lowcock (Missing), 268049 Lance Sergeant L. Swallow (Wounded), 267558 Corporal J. Goldsborough (Wounded), 265092 Corporal H. Leach (Wounded), 242534 Corporal W. Nicholson (Missing), 265195 Corporal H. Swinden (Wounded), 267793 Corporal H. H. Whitehead (Wounded), 8673 Lance Corporal C. Bailey (Wounded), 265502 Lance Corporal D. Bamforth (Wounded), 24878 Lance Corporal G. Falconer (Wounded), 268276 Lance Corporal L. Hartley (Wounded), 268475 Lance Corporal W. Keeley (Wounded), 24408 Lance Corporal F. Metcalfe (Killed in Action), 267495 Lance Corporal E. Sayer (Killed in Action), 14911 Lance Corporal H. Whittaker (Missing), 16695 Private J. Adamthwaite (Killed in Action), 26487 Private G. F. Alfred (Missing), 18896 Private J. A. Bailey (Wounded), 266677 Private H. A. Barker (Wounded), 16986 Private H. Barraclough (Killed in Action), 11333 Private N. Bates (Wounded), 267901 Private J. F. Batley (Wounded), 268430 Private F. Battye (Wounded), 26502 Private S. H. Bell (Wounded), 267917 Private C. Bennett (Missing), 202424 Private J. H. Berry (Wounded), 23867 Private H. Bolton (Wounded), 242578 Private H. Booth (Missing), 306412 Private W. Boyle (Wounded), 266129 Private F. Bracewell (Wounded), 265680 Private W. G. Briggs (Killed in Action), 26677 Private W. Brittle (Killed in Action), 241458 Private N. Broadbent (Missing), 265143 Private A. W. Brooke (Wounded), 265977 Private J. W. Brown (Wounded),26666 Private P. Brown (Wounded), 200365 Private W. Bussey (Wounded),240023 Private F. Cartwright (Killed in Action), 267444 Private J. Caunt (Wounded), 242585 Private W. Chambers (Wounded), 23879 Private T. Charles (Wounded), 265299 Private F. Clarke (Wounded), 206325 Private Connelly (Killed in Action), 267899 Private H. Cook (Wounded), 267554 Private W. W. Cooper (Wounded at Duty), 26134 Private F. Cox (Killed in Action), 263012 Private J. Darby (Wounded), 201388 Private G. R. Dillon (Wounded), 267534 Private C. A. Emmott (Killed in Action), 267369 Private F. Evans (Missing), 10924 Private H. Foster (Wounded), 26668 Private E. Gamblen (Wounded), 242618 Private J. C. Garner (Missing), 267506 Private J. Gilfoyle (Wounded), 265775 Private H. Gooding (Killed in Action), 267335 Private E. Grazier (Wounded), 267860 Private W. S. Greasley (Missing), 267861 Private J. W. Greaves (Wounded), 267358 Private E. R. Green (Missing), 25504 Private W. Green (Wounded), 26556 Private J. Haley (Wounded), 26550 Private G. Hardcastle (Missing), 267420 Private S. Hardy (Killed in Action), 17077 Private G. Harper (Killed in Action), 242614 Private G. Harwood (Wounded), 265796 Private W. E. Haxby (Wounded), 306230 Private H. Hill (Killed in Action), 241325 Private F. Hinchliffe (Wounded), 265537 Private F. Hird (Missing), 267867 Private H. Holland (Killed in Action), 242915 Private G. E. Holliday (Killed in Action), 265054 Private J. Hollingdrake (Wounded), 266596 Private W. Horsman (Killed in Action), 242172 Private P. Howe (Killed in Action), 240079 Private P. Ingham (Killed in Action), 267422 Private H. R. Jackson (Wounded), 267469 Private N. Jackson (Missing), 41156 Private R. E. Johnson (Wounded), 41154 Private A. Jeffery (Wounded), 303005 Private A. Jowett (Missing), 41160 Private R. T. Lamb (Killed in Action), 26575 Private R. Lawson (Wounded), 242185 Private H. Lee (Wounded), 242387 Private F. Long (Missing), 26593 Private W. E. Maycock (Killed in Action), 267527 J. R. Merry (Wounded), 265176 Private F. Miller (Wounded), 17050 Private J. Milne (Wounded), 265014 Private J. Moore (Wounded and missing), 41185 Private T. C. Mudd (Wounded & died of wounds 13/04/1918), 241106 Private W. Naylor (Killed in Action), 266967 Private H. Newhouse (Wounded), 41190 Private F. Newton (Wounded), 26717 Private A. Nicholson (Missing), 266498 Private E. Oversby (Wounded),26604 Private J. R. Parker (Killed in Action), 17065 Private J. Patterson (Missing), 41193 Private F. Pemberton (Missing), 265056 Private C. R. Pinder (Missing), 265446 Private D. Powell (Wounded), 242934 Private J. Priestley (Wounded), 265010 Private T. Ralph (Wounded at Duty), 267733 Private H. Rawnsley (Killed in Action), 266409 Private L. Ream (Missing), 26141 Private C. Redshaw (Wounded & Missing), 267579 Private M. Riley (Wounded), 267584 Private H. Roebuck (Missing), 266136 Private M. Rogers (Missing), 41199 Private W. F. Rowe (Killed in Action), 267568 Private W. Rushworth (Killed in Action), 242856 Private J. H. Shields (Wounded), 24433 Private G. W. Simpson (Wounded), 266554 Private R. S. Smith (Wounded), 267723 Private G. Snowden (Wounded), 267834 Private G. Spencer (Wounded), 41208 Private W. R. Spencer (Wounded and missing), 26631 Private B. Steel (Killed in Action), 266669 Private P. Taylor (Wounded), 26665 Private W. Thomson (Killed in Action), 267897 Private F. Tomlinson (Wounded), 22934 Private G. Vowles (Wounded), 24419 Private J. J. Warren (Missing), 268324 Private L. Waterworth (Missing), 266934 Private J. E. Whittaker (Wounded), 267833 Private W. Wilcock (Wounded), 267551 Private I. Wilshaw (Wounded), 202959 Private J. A. Wilson (Wounded), 305454 Private J. W. Wilson (Wounded).

  • 11th April 1918 Into the Line

  •    LA BECQUE

    CO visited Divisional HQ in brewery at VIEUX BERQUIN and received orders to move on to OUTTERSTEENE. Arrived OUTTERSTEENE about 5.0am. Billeted in E. end of village. A Coy put out an outpost in front of E. end of village. The positions were again strengthened at 1.30pm.

    1st PHASE

    The CO went to Brigade HQ at MERRIS at about 1.0pm. About 4.0pm CO returned from Brigade with orders from GOC to make an attack on LA BECQUE and LA ROSE FARM in conjunction with 15th Y & L on a Brigade frontage of 1500x and from there to continue the attack to the road running from FME DU BOIS to A.15.a.3.4. Machine gun barrage to support. By the time Coy Commanders had been gathered together and the scheme explained there was not much time to spare. Coy’s all reported in position by 7.0pm. Message received from Brigade at 7.0pm saying that artillery would support our attack. Barrage to commence at 7.0pm on road from A.20.a.5.0. to A.22.a.2.8. to A.16.c.5.3. lifting at 7.30pm and remaining until 8.0pm on line 500x in advance of the line A.20.c.0.7. to A.15.a.5.5. This message repeated to Coy’s and ZERO put off until 7.30pm but Y & L started moving forwards at 7.10pm. C Coy conformed to Y & L and all Coy’s conformed to C Coy with the exception of D Coy who got 100x behind C Coy. C Coy found open ground and easy going and upon arriving at A.14.a. awaited other Coy’s for 15 minutes, then went on with Y & L and took LA ROSE FARM. The other Coy’s, with part of C took LA BECQUE. Both of these places were held by 30 of the enemy. C Coy mistaking 1st objective went right through it, together with the 2nd objective, eventually digging in with A Coy 300x to S of road to end of orchard meeting slight resistance. Sgt GILLESPIE mopped up LA ROSE FARM and 2nd Lt LONG of D Coy together with 2nd Lt FREER of C Coy mopped up LA BECQUE. D Coy on the left advanced more slowly. In passing through LA BECQUE a heavy enemy machine gun was seen which Lt SEYMOUR got into action but was unable to get away owing to lack of men. About 30 prisoners were taken of which 17 were passed back through Battalion HQ. D Coy reported in touch with the 74th Brigade on their left, but shortly after reported that the 74th were leaving their trenches saying they were relieved, with the result that a large gap was left on the left of the Battalion. Message sent to Coy’s to reform and extend to cover the gap. C Coy did not extend, but sent in to say that as this would entail such heavy casualties he was awaiting darkness to carry out the order.

    The National Archives Reference WO95/2361/1

  • 11th Apr 1918 On the Move

  • 11th Apr 1918 Reguard

  • 11th Apr 1918 In Action

  • 11th Apr 1918 Attacks Repulsed

  • 11th Apr 1918 Evacuation

  • 11th Apr 1918 Orders to Withdraw

  • 11th Apr 1918 Withdrawal

  • 11th Apr 1918 Advance

  • 11th Apr 1918 Inspection

  • 11th Apr 1918 Route March

  • 11th Apr 1918 Reliefs

  • 11th of April 1918 Quiet...and then...

  • 11th Apr 1918 Fighting Withdrawal

  • 11th Apr 1918 Dressing Station

  • 11th Apr 1918 In Action

  • 11th Apr 1918 In Defence

  • 11th Apr 1918 In Action

  • 11th Apr 1918 Holding the Line

  • 11th Apr 1918 In Action

  • 11th Apr 1918 Reliefs

  • 11th Apr 1918 Operations

  • 11th Apr 1918 Training

Can you add to this factual information? Do you know the whereabouts of a unit on a particular day? Do you have a copy of an official war diary entry? Details of an an incident? The loss of a ship? A letter, postcard, photo or any other interesting snipts?

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There are:28 articles tagged with this date available in our Library

  These include information on officers service records, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.

Remembering those who died this day.

  • Pte. Walter Beet. Durham Light Infantry 8th Battalion Read their Story.
  • Pte. Frederick Brown. Durham Light Infantry 2nd Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. Robert Dixon Canham. Durham Light Infantry 1/7th Battalion Read their Story.
  • Pte. Joseph Tumans Cornwell. Yorkshire Regiment 5th Btn.
  • Pte. John Cross. York & Lancaster Regiment 2nd Battalion
  • Capt. William Davies. South Wales Borders 2nd Battalion Read their Story.
  • Pte. Frederick Dean. Yorkshire Regiment 12th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Cpl. Robert Eccles. Loyal North Lancashire Regiment 9th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte Joseph Little Ferguson. Durham Light Infantry 8th Btn Read their Story.
  • Pte Frank Hargreaves. South Wales Borderers 2nd Btt.
  • Pte. Thomas Jameson. Yorkshire Regiment 12th (Teesside Pioneers) Btn.
  • Cpl. Daniel Kenny. Machine Gun Corps 55th Coy.
  • Pte. Robert Laing. Seaforth Highlanders 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Spr. Charles Walter Lewis. South Wales Borderers 5th Btn. B Coy Read their Story.
  • Pte. John O'Boyle. Yorkshire Regiment 12th Battalion Read their Story.
  • Lt. James Kirk Simpson. MC. Seaforth Highlanders 9th Btn.
  • Sgt. Norman Colin Stewart. 53rd Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. John Arthur Whitby. Border Regiment 8th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. John Grieveson Whitley. Northumberland Fusiliers 1st/6th Battalion

    Add a name to this list.

  • Items from the Home Front Archive

    Do you have any letters, photos, postcards, documents or memorabilia from the Great War? We would love to include copies. Please use this form to submit diary entries and letters or photographs for this new Section: add to this archive.

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