Battle of Broodseinde

 

 

On 4th October 1917 the Battle of Broodseinde, part of 3rd Ypres (Passchendaele) began.  The 9th (service) Battalion The Sherwood Foresters took part in an attack on Poelcappelle.  

Below are the actual Battle plans for the Attack on Poelcappelle.

It should be read in conjunction with the 9th Bn Sherwood Foresters War Diary.

Maps mentioned are available but not online.

 

B/N/SR/19   Copy No 4

27-9-17

Ref  POELCAPPELLE

Sheet 1/10,000

 

33rd INFANTRY BRIGADE INSTRUCTIONS

for OPERATIONS - Sept/October 1917.

 

PREAMBLE

 

1. Plans for the forthcoming operations by 33rd Infantry Brigade, discussed at Brigade Hd, Qrs on 24th instant, will be issued from time to time in the form of instructions.

Copies of these instructions as necessary will be issued under: -

 

6th Lincoln R.     Copy No.1

6th Border Regt.     Copy No 2.

7th South Staffordshire Rgt.     Copy No 3

9th Sherwood Foresters     Copy No 4

33rd Machine Gun Coy.     Copy No 5

33rd L.T.M. Battery     Copy No 6

C.R.A. 11th Division     Copy No 7

11th Division     Copy No 8

33rd Bde Supply Officer     Copy No 9

A.D.M.S. 11th Division     Copy No 10

Brigadier General Comdg.     Copy No 11

Staff Captain     Copy No 12

Intelligence     Copy No 13

Signals.     Copy No 14

34th Infantry Brigade     Copy No 15

Office.     Copy No 16

32nd Infantry Brigade.     Copy No 17

 

2. The following Appendices as necessary will be issued with these Instructions: -

Appendix A. - Artillery Arrangements.

Appendix B. -  Machine Gun Arrangements.

Appendix C. - Trench Mortar Arrangements.

Appendix D. – Signal Arrangements.

Appendix E. - Co-operation of Tanks.

Appendix F - Co-operation of Special Coy, R.E.

Appendix G. – Contact Aeroplane arrangements.

Appendix H. – R.E. Arrangements.

Appendix I. – Intelligence.

Appendix J - Reports to be rendered by Brigade (Units during Operations)

Appendix K. - Administrative Instructions.

Appendix L. – Table of weights to be carried by troops in action.

 

Please acknowledge.     G. DeClair, Capt, Brigade Major, 27th September 1917, 33rd Infantry Brigade.

 

SECRET     Copy No 4

     33rd Infantry Brigade Order No.100.    3/10/17.

 

Ref POELCAPPELLE  Map

     1/10,000

 

1. On a date and an hour to be notified later, the 11th Division will attack the enemy opposite their front.

 

2. The 11th Division attack will be carried out by 34th Infantry Brigade on the right and 33rd Infantry Brigade on the left.    The 11th Inf. Bde (4th Division) will attack on the left of the 33rd Infantry Brigade.

 

3. The 33rd Infantry Brigade will attack on a two Battalion front – 7th South Staffs Regt on the right and 9th Sherwood Foresters on the left.

 

4. The attack will be made under an artillery barrage and will be carried out in accordance with 33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions, which have been issued to all concerned.

 

5.(a) The Objectives will be –

1st Objective:- The RED DOTTED LINE – V.25.b.95.05 – V.19.d.24.20 – V.19.a.22.28 – on which there will be a pause for approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes.

2nd Objective:- The RED LINE – V.26.a.77.53. (on LEKKERBOTERBEEK) V.20.c.12.86 – V.19.b.77.41 – V.19.b.06.88

 

6.The boundaries between Brigades and Battalions will be as follows :-

(1) Between 33rd Inf. Bde   (7th S.Staffs and 34th Inf. Brigade (11th Manchester R) –

On STEENBEEK at C.5.a.15.10.

On LANGEMARCK ROAD at  U.29.d.80.15

On ST JULIAN POELCAPPELLE Road at U.30.b.90.35

Near RETOUR X Roads at V.19.d.27.20

S.E. of POELCAPPELLE CHURCH at V.20.c.10.87.

 

(2) Between 7th S.Staffs R and 9th Sherwood Foresters –

V.19.b.65.50 – V.19.b.45.20 – V.19.b.25.10 – V.19.c.65.5 – U.24.d.95.15 – U.30.b.5.8.

(3)Between 33rd Inf.Bde (9th Sh. Foresters) and 11th Inf. Bde (1st Somerset Light Infantry) ;- V.19.b.1.8. = FERDAN HO. (inclusive) to 11th Inf. Bde ) – V.19.a.2.2. – U.24.d.45.70 – WHITE HOUSE inclusive to 33rd Inf.Bde – U.29.a.95.25.

 

Each objective will be consolidated as soon as captured.  Strong points will be constructed as detailed in para.14 of 33rd Inf. Bde Instructions.

 

7. The closest touch will be maintained with troops on either flank.  Troops of 33rd Infantry Brigade will meet troops of 34th Infantry Brigade and 11th Infantry Brigade at the points detailed in para. 16 33rd Inf. Bde Instructions.  The meeting of the above liaison parties will be especially reported.

 

8.The role of the 6th Border Regt as Bde Reserve (counter attacking Battn) and 6th Lincoln Regt – Div’l Reserve, as laid down in 33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions will hold good.

 

9.The action of tanks and Contact Aeroplanes as laid down in 33rd Inf.Bde Instructions will be put into effect.

 

10. The action of 33rd M.gun Coy and 33rd L.T.M. Bty as already defined in 33rd Inf.Bde Instructions will be carried out.

 

11.(a) 7th South Staffs R and 9th Sh. Foresters will be formed up in their Battle positions and all arrangements complete for the advance, by Zero minus 1 hour.

11.(b)The necessity of maintaining silence while forming up will be firmly impressed on all rank.  Once the troops are formed up, there will be no further movement.

11.(c)The completion of forming up will be notified to Brigade Hd.Qrs by wiring code words as follows :-

7th South Staffs R. “Lieut. ROBINSON”

9th Sh.Foresters “Capt FITZPATRICK”

 

12 (a) An Officer from 7th S.Staffs.R, 9th Sh.Foresters, 33rd M.Gun Co, 33rd L.T.M.Bty and O.C. Brigade Signals will be at Brigade Hd.Qrs  (VARRA FARM) at 8 pm on Y/Z night to synchronize watches.

12 (b)A watch will be sent by O.C. Brigade Signals to H.Q. 6th Border R (CANAL BANK) and H.Q.  6th Lincoln Regt (SIEGE CAMP) at 9.0 p.m. and 9.30. p.m. respectively on Y/Z night for the same purpose.

12 (c)Time will NOT BE SYNCHRONIZED ON THE TELEPHONE

 

13. Attention is drawn to 11th Div. Battle Standing Orders.

14. The date and hour of zero will be notified later.

 

Issued at 1.30 p.m. G. DeClair.  Capt, Brigade major. 33rd Infantry Brigade.

 

Copies to :- 

No.1  Lincoln R.                           No.14.  C.R.A. 11th Div.

No.2  Border R.                            No.15   O.O. Left Group. 11/Div. R.A.

No.3  S, Staff.R.                           No.16   C.R.E. 11th Div.

No.4  Sh.Fors                               No.17   A.D.M.S. 11th Divn

No.5 M.G.Coy                             No.18    32nd Inf.Bde

No.6 L.T.M.Bty                           No.19  O.C. ‘D’ Battn.Tanks.

No.7 11th Inf.Bde.                        No.20  War.Diary.

No.8  34th Inf.Bde.                       No.21  File.

No.9 11th Div.                              No.22  XVIIIth Corps Counter Bty

No.10 B.G.C

No.11 S.C.

No.12  I.O.

No.13  Signals

 

A379.

Secret     BMS/2/27   Copy no 4

 

33rd INFANTRY BRIGADE INSTRUCTIONS    27-9-17.

For  OPERATIONS  Sept/Oct 1917.

Ref –

POELCAPPELLE Map

1/10,000 Ed. 3.

 

1 (a) On a date and at an hour to be detailed later, the XVIIIth Corps in conjunction with the Vth Corps on their right and the XIVth Corps on their left, will attack the enemy’s position opposite their front.

1 (b) The XVIIIth Corps attack will be carried out by the 48th Division on the right, and the 11th Division on the left.  4th Division (XIVth Corps) will attack on the left of the 11th Division.

1 (c) The 11th Division attack will be carried out by 34th Infantry Brigade on the right and the 33rd Infantry Brigade on the left.  11th Inf.Bde (4th Division) will attack on the left of the 33rd Infantry brigade.

1 (d) The 11th Division attack will be divided into two phases –

1st Phase  - The advance from the BLUE LINE to the RED LINE (B Line)

2nd Phase – The advance from the RED LINE to the GREEN LINE (D Line)

 

2. 33rd Infantry Brigade attack will be carried out as follows :-

First Phase – Right Attack – 7th South Staffordshire Rgt.

Left Attack   -  9th Sherwood Foresters.

The 11th Manchester Rgt (34th Bde) will attack on the right of 7th South Staff.R., and the 1st Somerset Light Inf. (11th Bde) on the left of the 9th Sherwood Foresters.

Second Phase

Right Attack – 6th Lincolnshire Regt.

Left Attack -  6th Border Regt.

The 5th Dorsets (34th Bde) will attack on the right of the 6th Lincoln Regt and the 1st Rifle Brigade (11th Bde) on the left of 6th Border Regt.

 

3 (a) Each Battalion will be allotted one section of Vickers Machine Guns (4 Guns).  This section will be under the direct orders of the Battalion Commander, and will be given definite instructions beforehand as to the positions they are to take up..  O.C. 33rd Machine Gun Coy will arrange with Battalion Commanders that the sections of his Company co-operate in all practice attacks carried out by the Battalion to which they will be attached during actual operations.

(b) Two sections (8 Guns) of 33rd Machine Gun Coy will be employed in barrage work during each phase of the operations (Vide Appendix B.)

 

4 Objectives and boundaries for the above attacks are shewn on the attached map marked M.21/33.  (To Brigade Units only)

 

5. Instructions to the Trench Mortar Battery will be issued later as Appendix C.

 

6 (a) The formations to be adopted for the attack will be those agreed upon in recent Brigade Conferences.  Battalion Commanders will make a careful study of maps and aeroplane photographs and detail definite units to deal with any known enemy strongholds.

It must be impressed upon the Commanders of these units, that it is their duty to deal with any enemy found in these strongholds and then push forward at once behind the barrage, leaving a small garrison in the reduced strongholds.  It is essential that the leading troops keep as close to the barrage as possible.

6 (b) Every unit will have a reserve.

6 (c)It must be impressed upon all ranks that the Rifle and Machine Gun are the first and deadliest weapons of the Infantry in the present type of fighting, and every effort must be made to get forward S.A.A.  quickly in order to repel hostile counter-attacks which are certain to be delivered.  Special instructions regarding the supply of S.A.A. will be issued later in Appendix K. “ Administrative Instructions”.

6 (d) Subordinate Commanders must understand the value of a local counter-stroke swiftly made against a local enemy counter-attack. This element will be introduced into all practice attacks.

 

7. The attack will be made under an Artillery Barrage, the particulars of which will be forwarded later in Appendix ‘A’.

 

8. Battalion Commanders will arrange as soon as possible for a liaison between their own Battalion and battalions of other formations operating on their immediate flank (vide para.2 above).   H.Q. of 11th Manchester Regt is at D.16.c.1.9. (sheet 27). And H.Q. of 5th Dorset Regt – D.18.c.2.4. (sheet 27).  The locations of Battalions of the 11th Brigade have already been forwarded to those concerned.

 

9. Battalions will each take only 17 Officers into action, and all units will leave out of action (as a minimum) the personnel laid down in the Pamplet – S.S. 133- “Instructions for Training Divisions for Offensive Action”.

 

10. Personnel who will not take part in the attack on the actual day will not form part of units during practice attacks.

 

11. A model of the ground over which the Brigade will operate, has been constructed at Brigade Hd.Qrs. Commanding officers of battalions. M.Gun Coy.  L.T.M. Bty and Brigade Signal Section, will arrange that all officers and N.C.O.s and as many men as possible, view this model. Each party of other ranks will always be in charge of an officer who will explain the country to his party from the map. Parties will not exceed 30.

 

12. Equipment to be carried by the troops in Battle is laid down in Appendix ‘L’ (to Brigade Units only)

 

ACKNOWLEDGE

G.DeClair, Capt. Brigade Major. 33rd infantry Brigade. 

27th September . 1917.

Copies to :- Lincoln R., Border R. S.Staff.R., Sh.Fors., M.Gun Coy., L.T.M.Bty., C/R.A. 11th Div.,  11th Division., 33rd B.S. Offr., A.D.M.S. 11/Div., B.G.C., Staff Capt,. Intelligence., Signals., 34th Inf.Bde., 32nd Inf Bdes.

 

SECRET     BUS/2/33     Copy No 4

Ref – POELCAPPELLE MAP     29-9-17

1/10,000.

33RD INFANTRY BRIGADE INSTRUCTIONS

 

13 (a) 7th South Staffordshire Regt and 9th Sherwood Foresters will form up in the area between PHEASANT TRENCH (exclusive) and our present front line (inclusive).

The boundaries between the Battalions West of our present front line will be :- U.24.d.65.00 – CEMETERY (inclusive to Sherwood Foresters) – PHEASANT FARM (inclusive to Sherwood Foresters) – U.30.a.10.10 – CAT HOUSE.

The forming-up areas will be carefully reconnoitred beforehand.  7th South Staffs R and 9th Sherwood Foresters will form up on lines of tapes and luminous discs which will be placed in position by specially selected parties of N.C.Os and men under an officer in each Battalion. These parties will reconnoiter the forming-up area and also practice laying out the tapes in the back area by day and night beforehand.

13 (b) Constant patrols will ensure that there are no enemy posts or removable obstacles between the forming up positions and the lines on which our barrage comes down at Zero.  This barrage line will be 150 yards in front of the forming-up positions. In order to avoid putting the enemy on his guard, the removal of obstacles will take place as late as possible.

 

14 (a) The objectives once gained will be consolidated by complete units definitely detailed beforehand and disposed in depth.   Strong points will be constructed and garrisoned as follows –

By 7th South Staffs Regt – in the vicinity of –

Houses at V.19.c.8.1.

House at V.19.c.5.8.

German M.G. Emplacement at V.19.c.35.40.

V.19.c.90.25 (to contain Vickers Gun)

V.19.c.75.50 (to contain Vickers Gun)

V.19.d.6.5.  (R.E. to assist).

V.19.d.4.8.

V.19.d.2.9.

V.19.b.60.05.

V.19.b.8.0.(to contain Vickers Gun)

V.19.b.65.20. (to contain Vickers Gun)

By 9th Sherwood Foresters in the vicinity of –

1. V.19.a.3.0,   2. V.19.a.6.2., 3. V.19.a.7.6., 4. V.19.a.8.5., 5, V19.b.0.2.

6. V.19.b.1.6.,  7. V.19.b.85.70.   8. V.19.b.35.35.   9. V.19.b.38.25.

10. V.19.b.35.15.   11. V.19.b.30.60.    12. V.19.c.35.33..  13. U.24.d.65.60.

U.24.d.45.75.

 

14 (b) One half section R.E., each will be attached to 7th South Staffs.Regt and 9th Sh.Foresters to assist in the consolidation of Strong Points at – V.19.d.6.5. and V.19.a.70.45.     Infantry parties for these Strong Points will be detailed by Commanding officers before the commencement of operations.  The R.E. personnel will be kept at Battalion Headquarters until such time as it is definitely reported that the ground which the strong points are to be constructed has been captured and Commanding Officers are satisfied that consolidation can begin.  Careful arrangements for guiding the R.E. personnel to the sites of the strong points must be made beforehand.

 

15 (This section has been written through with ‘Cancelled’ but I have included it for historical accuracy)

During the attack by 7th South Staffs regt and 9th Sherwood Foresters, the role of the 6th Border Regt will be one of readiness to deal with any successful hostile counter-attack which the two front Battalions, having used all their resources, have failed to dislodge.     The Border Regt. Will not be used to reinforce the battalion in front of them.   Close touch will be kept by this Battalion with the situation in front, and routes forward will be reconnoitred as soon as practicable.  At Zero minus 6 hours 6th Border Regt will be concentrated in previously reconnoitred positions East and West of the STEENBEKE.   After Zero the officer commanding will move his Battalion forward in his own time to the area between PHEASANT FARM and ROSE HOUSE within the Brigade boundaries, so that the whole of his Battalion is concentrated in that area by Zero plus 3 hours.  Half-hourly reports as to the progress of this move will be made to brigade Hd.Qrs from Zero plus 30 minutes onwards.

This Battalion will be in readiness to move forward from the area described in the preceding paragraph at short notice, should orders to that effect be received from Brigade H.Q.  However, the Officer Commanding is authorized to use his battalion for a counter-stroke without previous reference to Brigade H.Q, should time and urgency of the tactical situation, in his opinion, demand it.  Any action taken will be reported to brigade H.Q. at once.

An Officer from among those detailed to go into action will be sent to Brigade Hd.Qrs at Zero hour by this battalion to act as Liaison Officer.

(end of cancelled section)

 

16. Closest touch will be maintained with troops on the flanks. Arrangements have been made for troops of flank brigades to meet troops of this Brigade as under :-

7th S.Staffs R to meet 11th Manchesters at –

MALTA HOUSE.

POND  at V.25.a.9.9.

CROSSROADS V.19.d.40.05.

ROAD JUNCTION at V.19.d.95.90.

9th Sh.Fors to meet 1st Somerset L.Inf at -

TREES AT U.24.d.6.7.

CROSSROADS at V.19.a.3.8.

FERDAN HOUSE  V.19.a.7.6.

ON ROAD at V.19.b.05.95.

Special parties will be detailed before Zero to effect the above liaisons.

 

17. The 11th Division attack will be supported by the Right and Left groups 11th Division Artillery consisting of :-

Right Group - 58TH 256TH, 77TH (army) and 93rd (Army) Brigades R.F.A.

 

Left Group - 59th, 255th, 34th (Army) and 298th (Army) brigades R.F.A.

 

STRENGTH   144 Eighteen Pounders.

40 4.5” Howitzers   (58 has been crossed out)

 

18 (a) Barrage Table and further particulars as to the Artillery supporting 33rd Inf.Brigade attack will be published later in Appendix A.

18 (b) Harassing fire and special treatment of enemys’ communications will be carried out from now up to Z day.

18 (c) Strong points will be dealt with by the Heavy Artillery, but the general terrain will not be destroyed.  The Heavy Artillery have been asked to give special treatment to the following points between now and Zero –

V.19.b.60.35. Concrete

V.19.b.38.20. Concrete

V.20.a.35.00. Concrete

V.14.c.15.30. Concrete

V.20.a.05.65. Concrete

V.19.a.62.13. Concrete

V.19.c.8.5.     Concrete

V.19.b.1.1.    Concrete

V.19.b.60.85 Concrete

V.19.b.45.00 Concrete

V.19.d.35.95.Concrete

V.19.a.7.6. (FERDAN HOUSE).

V.19.b.05.95.

 

 

AREAS    Concrete emplacements etc in area –

V.20.a.05 to V.30.a.5.8.

V.14.c.12 to V.14.c.5.3.

V.19.b..67 to V.19.b.9.4.

V.19.b.88 to V.26.a.5.4.

 

Area covered by concrete emplacements between junction of roads V.19.b.5.1.

18 (d) The Divisional Artillery will carry out each day short concentrated barrages, varying in intensity, rate and locality.

18 (e)Barrages for the support of the actual attack will be formed in depth, especial attention being paid to localities from which rifle and machine gun fire could be directed by the enemy through the Creeping barrage.

 

19. The attack will be supported by Machine Gun Barrage of 32 guns from positions about 200 yards in rear of PHEASANT TRENCH, details of which will be issued later.

 

20. To further demoralize the enemy, opposing the 11th Division, gas will be discharged (wind and weather permitting) towards POELCAPPELLE during the night immediately preceding Zero vide Appendix F. issued herewith.

 

21. Tanks will co-operate with the 11th Division in the attack. Details will be published later in appendix E.

 

22. Forward communications will be organized on the plan adopted by the 11th Division during recent operations. Full details as to intercommunication will be published later in Appendix D.

 

SECRET     H.S/3/46   Copy No 4.

3-10-17

 

33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions.

 

Herewith new paras. 23 and 24 also addendu to para. 6 (c) - 33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions.

Please Acknowledge.

G.DeClair, Capt, Brigade Major, 33rd Infantry brigade.

Copies – Bde Units.   11th Div.   Staff.

 

Para 23.   Coys (Units crossed out) are again reminded of the importance of rendering reports of hostile shelling and any possible short shooting by our own artillery as accurately and in as much detail as possible.  Vague reports on shellings do not enable Bn (Brigade crossed out) H.Q. of the Artillery to take any action.

(In margin –‘Shelling – report on)

 

Para.24.  Coy (Battalion crossed out) Commanders are reminded of the necessity of watching the flanks.  Special troops will be detailed for this purpose, and to attack or mask any hostile posts which may be holding out on the flanks, and are hampering the advance. Those posts, provided that they are adjacent, will be engaged, whether within the Bn (brigade crossed out) area or not.

(In the margin – handwritten – ‘Protection of Flanks)

 

Addenda to Para. 8 (c)

The importance of collecting S.A.A. from casualties will be impressed on all ranks.  Slightly wounded men will be made to understand that it is a point of honour for them to hand over all the S.A.A. they have on them, before proceeding to the dressing station; by doing so, they are saving the lives of their comrades.

(in margin – ‘ Collection of SAA etc from casualities’)

 

33rd Inf. Brigade Dump will be established at SNIPE HOUSE before Zero.  The components of this dump will include S.A.A., Grenades, water, Iron Rations, S.O.S. Signals and Stokes shells.  Full details of this dump will be issued later by the Staff Captain in Appendix K.

 

Issued at 3.50 pm  30-9-17   G.DeClair, capt, brigade Major, 33rd Infantry Brigade.

 

Copies to -  Lincoln R., Border R., S.Staff.R., Sh.Fors., M.Gun Coy., L.T.M. Bty., C.R.A. 11th Div., 11th Div., A.D.M.S. 11th Div., Brigadier General Comdg., Staff Captain., Intelligence., Signals., 34th Inf. Bde., 32nd Inf, Bde., O.C. Left group 11th D.A., 11th Inf. Brigade.

 

SECRET     Copy No 4

33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions

 

APPENDIX A.

Date stamped – 3 Oct 1917 H.Q. 33rd Infantry brigade.

 

Ref – 1/10000 POELCAPPELLE Map.

 

Date stamped – Headquarters, 33rd Infantry brigade, 3 Oct 1917.

 

1. The attack will be made under an artillery barrage according to the attached barrage table, and will be supported by artillery detailed in para. 17A of these instructions.

 

2 (a) The initial barrage will come down on line V 25c 98.58 – V 25. a 05.55 – U 24 d 15.50.

2 (b) The barrage will lift at Zero plus 3 minutes and move forward for the first 200 yards at the rate of 50 yards in 2 minutes.

2 (c) After the first 200 yards and up to the protective barrage for the red DOTTED LINE it will move at the rate of 50 yards in 3 minutes.

2 (d) It will lift off the RED DOTTED LINE at Zero plus   47 minutes and will reach a protective line from V20 a 30. 30 to V 19 a 85.65 at Zero plus two hours and ten minutes.

2 (e)The barrage will move forward again from this protective line at Zero plus 2 hours and 10 minutes at the rate of 50 yards in 4 minutes until it clears the RED LINE at about 2 hours 30 minutes and becomes protective on the line V 26 b 13.82 – V 20 a 00.70 – V 13 d 42.05 at Zero plus 2 hours and 40 minutes., where it remains for two hours.

All lifts will be of 50 yards

 

3. During the pause on the RED DOTTED LINE, the high ground about MEUNIER HOUSE will be masked by a smoke screen

 

4. A gas shell bombardment will be carried out by 60-pdrs. And 4.5 Hows. At the following times:-

Zero plus 4 hours 45 minutes to Zero plus 6 hours 45 minutes.

2. p.m. to0 3.15 p.m.

5.45 p.m. to 7 p.m.

 

5. No gas shelling will take place within 500 yards of the RED LINE, i.e. V 19 b 15.80 – V 19 b 80.40 – V 20 a 40.00, or within 1000 yards if the wind is North, North East, East, or South East.

 

6. The bombardment will open with H.E. and will then change to gas for 10 minutes, and will move forward in two lifts of 100 yards each of ten minutes interval.

 

7. During the gas bombardments H.E. and shrapnel will be fired in a proportion not to exceed 1 H.E. to 5 Gas Shell.

 

8. If a high wind is blowing the gas bombardment will not take place.

 

9. No other firing will take place in the gassed area during the bombardment.

 

10. O.C. Left Group 11th Div. Artillery will provide one Liaison officer to remain at

Bde. H.Q.

7th S.Staffs. Regt.

9th Sherwood Foresters.

 

ACKNOWLEDGE        G.DeClair, Capt. Brigade Major. 33rd Infantry Brigade.

Copies to :-

Lincolns, Borders, S,Staffords, Sherwood Fors, M.G. Coy, T.M. Batty

11th Div, 11th Bde., 34th Bde., Left Group 11th Div. R.A., B.G.C., B.M., S.C.,

 

Barrage Map will follow.

 

SECRET  RMB/2/52      2/10/17.

 

33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions

 

Para.15 of 33rd Inf. Brigade Instructions is cancelled, and the following will be substituted.

 

Para 15.  During the attack by 7th South Staffs R and 9th Sh. Foresters, the role of the 6th Border Regt will be one of readiness to deal with any successful counter-attacks, which the two front Battalions, having used all their resources, have failed to dislodge.

The Border Rgt will not be used to reinforce the Battalion in front of them.

Close touch will be kept by this Battalion with the situation in front, and routes forward will be reconnoitred as soon as possible.

At Zero, 6th Border Regt will be concentrated in previously reconnoutred positions in the area CANE TRENCH – VARNA FM – STEENBEEK.

The officer commanding 6th Border Regt will move his Battalion forward in his own time to the area between PHEASANT FM and ROSE HOUSE within the Brigade boundaries as follows :-

2 Coys by Zero plus 2 and half hours.

2 Coys by Zero plus 3 and half hours

 

H.Q. of 6th Border Rgt will be established as follows :-

At Zero in the vicinity of  VARNA FARM.

At Zero plus 2 hours at SNIPE HOUSE.

Frequent reports as to the progress of the move of this Battalion to the PHEASANT FM – ROSE HOUSE  area will be made to Brigade Hd.Qrs.

 

This Battalion will be in readiness to move forward from the area described above at short notice, should orders to that effect be received from Brigade H.Q.  However, the officer commanding is authorized to use his Battalion for a counter stroke without previous reference to Brigade Hd,Qrs should time and the urgency of the tactical situation in his opinion demand it.  Any action taken will be reported to Brigade H.Q.

An officer detailed from among those detailed to go into action will be sent to brigade Hd. Qrs at Zero hour by this Battalion to act as Liaison officer.

 

New Para.26    6th  Lincoln Regt will be in Divisional reserve and will move from SIEGE CAMP  to the CANAL BANK, so as to arrive at the CANAL BANK  by Zero plus 6 hours.

O.C. 6th Linc.R. will arrange to reconnoiter the accommodation held by 6th Border R on the Canal Bank and in the CANE TRENCH – VARNA FM – STEENBEKE Area and send advance parties to take it over, when vacated by Border Rgt.

 

ACKNOWLEDGE

Copies to all recipients             G.DeClair, Capt, Brigade Major, 33rd Infantry Brigade.

 

SECRET   BMS/2/55   Copy No 4

2-10-17

 

33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions

 

Herewith new para. 23 and addenda to paras. 13A. 33rd Inf. Bde Instructions

 

Copies to all recipients.          G.DeClair, Capt, Brigade major, 33rd Infantry Brigade

(a) Para.25  - 1 Platoon 6th Lincoln Rgt will be detailed to act as a carrying party for 33rd M.Gun Coy on Y/Z night.  O.C. 33rd M.Gun Coy will –

1. Inform O.C. 6th Lincoln R direct as to at what hour and where this party will be required

2. Provide necessary guides.

 

(b) 1 Coy. 6th Lincoln Rgt will be required for carrying during operations.  This Coy will probably be required in two parties of two platoons, each under an officer, one party to carry for 7th S.Staff.R, one party to carry for the 9th Sherwood Foresters.  However, both parties will be prepared to work in either sector.  Officers in command of parties will reconnoitre the forward routes to the Brigade dump at SNIPE HOUSE and thence to Battn H.Q.  This Coy will move forward so as to arrive at CANE TRENCH at Zero plus 6 hours.   The Company Commander (whose name will be notified to Bde H.Q. as soon as possible) will remain at CANE POST where he will be in telephonic communication with Brigade Hd. Qrs.

 

Addenda to para . 13 A. 

The direction of the advance will be maintained by compass bearings.

The bearings are as follows :-

Right of 7th S,Staffs.R. ….. 56 degrees true

Left of   7th S.Staffs. R. …. 55 degrees true.

The bearing along the forming up line from right to left is 323 degrees true.

 

SECRET        Copy No 4  2/10/17.

 

33rd Infantry Brigade Instructions

Machine Gun Arrangements. Appendix B.

 

1. The following Machine guns will be available for the attack :-

32nd M.Gun Coy     - 16 guns.

33rd M.Gun Coy     - 16 guns.

34th M.Gun Coy     - 16 guns.

197th M.Gun Coy   -  8 guns.

 

2. Guns will be disposed as under at zero :-

2 (a) For Barrage –

32nd M.Gun Coy – 16 guns.

33rd M.Gun Coy  -   8 guns. *

197th M.Gun Coy – 8 guns.

To rejoin 33rd Bde on completion of the barrage.

These guns will be in position and ready to fire by zero minus 6 hours.

The position of these barrage guns and their barrage lines will be as shewn on the attached tracing.

2 (b) For the support of attacking Battalions under Battalions Commanders concerned.

33rd M.Gun Co  8 guns.

3 (c) On completion of barrage, these guns will be concentrated by O.C. 33rd M.Gun Coy in the vicinity of HANNIXBEEKE FM.

 

4 (d )Two of these guns will then be earmarked to go forward with 6th Border Rgt if necessary. On arrival, at HANNIXBEEK FARM one officer from M.G. Co. will be sent to get in touch with O.C. 6th Border R at SNIPE HOUSE.

 

4 (e)O.C. M.Gun Coy will report to brigade Hd Qrs as soon as possible –

That his guns are concentrated as directed.

That his officer is in touch with O.C. 6th Border R.

M.Gun H.Q. will be at HAANIXBEEK FARM.

 

Copies to – Bde Units, 34th Inf.Bde., 11th Inf Bde., 11th Division., B.G.C., S.C., I.O., Signals.

 

G.DeClair, Capt, brigade Major, 33rd Infantry Brigade.

 

DISTRIBUTION OF TROOPS

(Reference 4th Division Order No. 61)

 

29th Division – 86th Brigade  (assaulting Battn) – 1st R.Dublin Fus.

Blue diamond on back of collar.

Red triangle on sleeve.

 

4th Division –

10th Brigade –

2nd Seaforth Hrs – Plaid triangle

3/10th Middlesex R. – Red and Yellow triangle. (red forward)

1st R. Warwicks – Green

The Household Bn,

 

11th Brigade-

1st Hampshire Regt. – Yellow Tiger.

1st Somerset L.I. – Yellow (oblong strip)

1st E.Lancs R – Yellow (oblong vertical)

1st Rifle Bde. – Yellow Maltese Cross

 

11th Division – 33rd Brigade –

(1st Objective)

9th Notts. & Derby Regt. – White roman four on back of collar

(2nd Objective)

6th Border Regt. – white roman two on green at back of collar.

 

NOTE :- Distinctive Badges of 4th Division are in every case on upper part of arm.

 

(badges were needed, so that in battle, friendly units could recognize each other.)

 

J S Morse 2005

 

 

 

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