1st Battalion War Diary, July 1916

  1st Border Regiment War Diary Transcriptions (1915-1918)
The National Archives WO/95/4311 & WO/95/2305   
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Place Date Hour Summary of Events
FRONT LINE
1/7/16
7.30 a.m.
The Btn (less 10%) advanced just SOUTH of BEAUMONT HAMEL, their objective being BEAUCOURT REDOUBT. The 2nd S.W.Bs[1], whose objective was the first two GERMAN LINES, were wiped out by MACHINE GUN fire in our own wire. The 1st Btn. The BORDER REGT., then went over the top from our support line, and over our first line, the bridges over our front trench having been ranged by the GERMAN MACHINE GUNNERS the day previously. We met with heavy losses, while crossing these bridges + passing through the lanes out in our wire. The men were absolutely magnificent, and formed up as ordered outside our wire, made a right incline, and advanced into “NO MAN'S LAND” at a slow walk, also as ordered. The advance was continued until only little groups of half a dozen men were left here and there and these, finding that no reinforcements were in sight, took cover in shell holes or wherever they could.
8 a.m.
The advance was brought entirely to a standstill.
8.15 a.m.
Enemy re-opened his bombardment on our trenches, for which our guns retaliated.
9.15 a.m.
LIEUT-COL ELLIS having been wounded and brought in by NO.8409 PTE. NEWCOMBE, MAJOR MEIKLEJOHN (who had been in command of the 10%) assumed command of the BTN., and collected all the men he could in the [illegible] line, as ordered by the BRIGADIER.
10.30 a.m.
The 10% ordered back to reserve line, where they stayed until next morning. Advance definitely given up in this sector. The BTN. strength of those who took part in advance was OFFICERS 23. OTHER RANKS 809.

CASUALTIES
KILLED
CAPT. F.R. JESSUP
CAPT. T.H. BEYES
WOUNDED
LT. COL. A.J. ELLIS
CAPT. J.G. HEYDER
LIEUT. B.L.A. KENNETT
LIEUT. J.B. SINCLAIR
2 LIEUT. G.W.N. ROWSELL
2 LIEUT. F.H. TALBOT
2 LIEUT. A.W.H. BARNES
2 LIUET. D. BREMNER
LIEUT. H.F. SAMPSON
2 LIEUT. F.T. WILKINS
2 LIEUT. D.C.R. STUART
2 LIEUT. D. CARGILL
MISSING BLVD KILLED
2 LIEUT. W.K. SANDERSON
2 LIEUT. BAXENDINE
2 LIEUT. A.W. FRASER
2 LIEUT. L. JACKSON
WOUNDED + MISSING
2 LIEUT. H.L. CHOLMELEY
2 LIEUT. W.P. RETTIE
OTHER RANKS
KILLED 64, WOUNDED 411, MISSING 144.

FRONT LINE
2/7/16
10 a.m.
The remnants of the BTN. relieved the 9th R.I.R.[2] just N. of R. ANCRE, and immediately set to work to repair the trenches, which had suffered severely by the bombardment.
2.30 a.m.
At this time we sent out parties to bring in wounded and bring dead of the R.I.Rs. who were lying in front of our line. This continued intermittently all day and during the night, the enemy continually sniping our rescue parties. 2nd LIEUT R.G. CULLIS promoted LIEUT. + ACTING ADJUTANT.
5/7/16
CAPT. J.W. EWBANK rejoined from course of Instruction at 4th ARMY SCHOOL.

2 LIEUT. C.H. WHITEHOUSE and 2 LIEUT. D. McCLEOD rejoined from course at 29th DIV. SCHOOL.

7.7.16
2 LIEUT. CAMPBELL to course at 4TH ARMY SCHOOL.
8.7.16
6 p.m.
Relieved and back to REST CAMP at ACHUEX.
ACHUEX
9.7.16
Casualties week ending 9.7.16:-

OFFICERS
WOUNDED 2 LIEUT. BADGER-CLARK
SICK 2 LIEUT. M. DUFF to F.A.
OTHER RANKS KILLED 1, WOUNDED 6, SICK TO HOSPITAL 5, FROM BASE 32 (6.7.16).
Rejoined from hospital 4.

14.7.16
From BASE 74 other ranks.
15.7.16
Casualties week ending 15.7.16:-

OFFICERS
SICK TO HOSPITAL 2 LIEUT. R.C. HAMILTON 11.7.16
OTHER RANKS SICK TO HOSPITAL 7, Rejoined from HOSPITAL 4.

MAILLY
7/7/16
Relieved 4th WORCESTERS in BRIGADE RESERVE.
16/7/16
MAJOR F.H.S. LE MESURIER joined BTN. from D.L.I.[3] LIEUT W. de H. ROBINSON rejoined Btn. from TOWN. COMMOT. ENGLEBELMER.
19/7/16
The following officers joined Btn. from BASE:-

2 LIEUT. W.S.M. RUXTON
2 LIEUT. F.G. LYALL
2 LIEUT. G.C.M. COX
2 LIEUT. C.F. SUTRO
2 LIEUT. G.F. KEMP
2 LIEUT. D.M. BOWYER
2 LIEUT. L.W. ARMSTRONG
2 LIEUT. R.G. TELFER
2 LIEUT. R.E.S. JOHNSON
2 LIEUT. H.M. WOOLER

FRONT LINE
22/7/16
The Btn. relieved the 2nd S.W.Bs. in front line S. of BEAUMONT HAMEL.

Casualties week ending 22.7.16:-
OFFICERS nil
OTHER RANKS WOUNDED 2, SICK TO HOSPITAL 9.
8214 PTE. REED died of wounds [illegible] 1.7.16
2 other ranks rejoined from a refresher course of signalling, and 2 O.R. left for course of signalling 15.7.16

21/7/16
Joined Btn from BASE:-

CAPT. DURLACHER, R.B. 6th BTN.
2 LIEUT. MORRIS, J.W. 10th BTN.
2 LIEUT. BEATTIE, W.L. 10th BTN.
2 LIEUT. SPEAR-MORGAN, R.H. 10th BTN.

22.7.16
2 LIEUT. DUFF, M., invalided, home, struck off strength.

2 LIEUT. PALMER, H., rejoined Btn. from sickness.

BUS
24.7.16
Left for BUS. No. 8589 A/C.S.M. CRAINE joined Btn. from BASE.
AMPLIER
25.7.16
Arrived at AMPLIER.
27.7.16
9.30 p.m.
Entrained at DOULLENS.
28.7.16
6.30 a.m.
Arrived at PROVEN, and encamped about 3 miles out on the PROVEN-POPERINCHE ROAD.
29.7.16
128 other ranks joined Btn. from BASE.

10 other ranks left to join 177th TUNNELLING COMPANY.

PROVEN
30.7.16
2 LIEUT. C.H. WHITEHOUSE (13th ROYAL WARWICKS) and 13 other ranks left Btn. to join 177th TUNNELLING COY.

Casualties week ending 30.7.16:-
Other Ranks KILLED 1, WOUNDED 3, SICK to HOSPITAL 1.

[signed] R.G. Cullis. Lieut.
A/Adjutant. 1st Btn. The Border Regiment

References / notes[edit]

  • National Archives Catalogue Reference: WO/95/2305
  • The transcription above is available under the National Archives Open Government Licence for public sector information.
  1. South Wales Borderers
  2. Royal Irish Rifles
  3. Durham Light Infantry