Chapter 8 – German Somme Offensive

Operation Michael – The 1st German Spring Offensive of 1918 For the next four days the Bn were busy re-equipping, reorganising and training. Time was spent practising on the firing range and the…

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  1.  Interior economy generally referred to personal administration i.e. washing, sewing, darning, but could refer to cleaning, polishing and tidying the billets 
  2.  South of St Quentin 
  3.  Brigadier General C. Coffin 
  4.  Brigadier General Arthur Uniacke Stockley was was commissioned in the Royal Artillery on the 15th of February 1889. He commanded the 4th Northumberland (Territorial) Brigade RFA from the 23rd of September 1912 to the 28th of July 1914 and when war broke out he mobilised with the 50th (Northumbrian) Division. He was CRA of the Division from 20 June 1916 to 29 March 1918, when he was invalided home. He was three times mentioned in despatches.. (Bourne)
  5. Army Padres/chaplains provided spiritual leadership, moral guidance and pastoral support. Chaplains were primarily based in hospitals and Advanced Dressing Stations during the early stages of the war, but by the end many of them were serving with front line units and sharing the dangers and hardships earning the respect of the soldiers  
  6.  Royal Flying Corps 
  7. The home of 5 Squadron, Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) flying De Havilland 4s
  8.  The 149thBde were actually positioned to the rear of the 61st (2nd South Midland) Divn 
  9.  This would mean that at least one Coy of the 4th NF would be positioned on the south side of the Omignon River (probably ‘A’ Coy) 
  10. Lt General Sir Ivor Maxse was the GOC 18th (Eastern) Divn at the beginning of WW1. He commanded XVIII Corps from January 1917
  11.  The actual time of the assault varies between 3 & 5pm in unit War Diaries
  12.  Frank Robinson had formerly served with the 4th NF
  13.  Pte David Forster (200037)
  14.  Capt Thomas Alexander Lacy-Thompson 
  15. Taken from one of Brig. Gen. Riddell’s field reports held amongst the  Shaw-Sparrow Papers at the British Library
  16. Capt William Barry Hicks
  17.  Capt Thomas William Gregory joined 1/4th from 2/4th. He had previously suffered a gun shot wound to the face whilst out with a working party on 3 Jul 1915. He was wounded again on this day  and died in Field Ambulance near Tertry. He was posted to the 4th from 16th NF on its disbandment. Arras Memorial 
  18. Capt Alexander Finlayson 6th Highland Light Infantry 3183 . Attached  4th  Northumberland Fusiliers. Terlincthun British Cemetery, Wimille
  19.  Capt.Herbert Grenfell King was posted from the 16th NF, upon its disbandment during Feb 1918. Terlincthun British Cemetery, Wimille 
  20.  2nd Lt Louis Raymond Chevreau de Monlehu was posted from the 16th NF and is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France. Louis was a Mauritian who volunteered for service in the British army soon after the war started. It is believed that he was born in Mauritius on the 10th of June 1889, the fifth child of Chevreau de Montlehu Joseph, Paulin, Alfred Rivaltz and his wife Labauve d'Arifat Marie. Initially he served as a Pte in the Coldstream Guards (17590). He was hospitalised with gas poisoning and was subsequently commissioned into the 16th NF, attached to the 4th NF. His name is also on the Curepipe Memorial in Mauritius (with the names of 47 other soldiers who volunteered and served in the British and French armies) (Courtesy: Mrs C Renard)
  21. 2nd Lt Thomas Tibbs - Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France
  22. 2nd Lt John William Cockburn was part of the BEF draft of 20 Nov 17
  23. Machine Gun Coy (MGC)
  24. Trench Mortar Battery (TMB)
  25. The Limber was essentially a horse or mule drawn box mounted on a two wheels. The horses were coupled to either side of a shaft
  26.  Cpl Theophilus Steele 
  27. In February 1918 many Bns were disbanded to bring others up to strength. Entrenching Bns were formed from the men left over. The 22nd Entrenching Bn was originally formed with men from the 11/13th Royal Irish Rifles. Their primary role was to work on defences
  28.  Acting CSM William Mowle (201975) 
  29. Lt Tom Clough Lund joined the 4th NF on the 6 May 1915 and is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France (Core, 2008)
  30.  L/Cpl Richard Middleton  (4/1711, 200404) was born and enlisted in Hexham. Wounded  on 25 Apr 15 and reported to 3/4th NF on 28 Jun 15. Returned to Flanders with a draft on 7 Nov 15. Commemorated on Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France 
  31.  L/Cpl’s Percy Cowley (17420) 
  32.  Pte Robert William Embleton (16/1092) was born and enlisted in Newcastle. Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France 
  33. Pte John Widdowson (34309) was born in Gunthorpe and enlisted in Nottingham. Posted from Gen Ser Cav (31260). Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France
  34.  Frank Broad (48557) was born in Long Eaton and enlisted in Hillsey. Formerly Royal Horse Artillery (164092). Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France 
  35.  Benjamin Brown (4/6701, 235192) are commemorated on  the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France 
  36.  1½ miles west of the Eterpigny bridge over the Somme 
  37.  L/Cpl Matthew Hopper (200616)
  38. Pte Alcock is quoted as receiving the Mention in Dispatches for his actions of the 24th 
  39. L/Cpl Harold Smith (4/2790, 235188) is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France
  40.  Pte John Cowans (34795) is buried at Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres, Somme, France 
  41.  Capt William Barry Hicks was captured by the enemy and repatriated on the 1st of December 1918
  42.  General Officer Commanding (GOC) 149th Bde 
  43.  2nd Lt Thomas Hall 
  44.  Pte Percy Brownridge (38907)
  45.  Pte Donald Dudley Daniels (4/5221, 202084) 
  46.  Pte John Pencott (4/3316, 201116) 
  47.  Pte James Smith (29598)  is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France
  48.  Pte Willie Eastwood (4/7021, 235249) is buried in Bouchoir New British Cemetery, Somme
  49.  Pte Frederick H. Gibbs (4/5573, 204398) is buried in Hangard Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme
  50. Major General George Carey created a force that included ‘School of instruction  staff, American soldiers, Canadian railwaymen and engineers
  51.  Cpl George Frederick Sheward (366151) is buried in Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres, Somme
  52.  Pte William Parkinson (32/469) 
  53.  Pte George Rawson (4/7553, 203208) are commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial
  54. Approx 5 miles south west of Moreuil
  55.  Sgt William Baty Tiffin (4/1762, 200423). William was awarded the Military Medal for his actions on the 26th Oct 1917 
  56.  L/Cpl Arthur Cowley (4/5166, 202033) was born and enlisted in Rushden, Northants, Formerly 7792 of East Yorks Regt
  57.  Pte Thomas Wilson (4/7543, 203204) enlisted in Newcastle and is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France
  58.  Pte Joseph Roberts (4/3061, 201020) are commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, Somme, France 
  59.  Capt E. Lancelot Dobson 
  60. Pte W. H. Robson (200666)
  61.  2nd Lt Gwylon Davies 
  62.  2nd Lt (the Reverend) William Ellis Pearson 
  63.  Lt Nicholson had just returned from duties at 50th Division HQ. Also in the party were 2nd Lts H.R. Rees, H. Stewart and C.M Davison 
  64.  Forty-four men from 4th NF are commemorated on the Pozieres memorial