On this day 18th June 1918 – a raid by the 1/5th Sherwoods

Narrative

Artillery barrage commenced punctually at ZERO (12-35am) and was excellent except on right, where it fell rather short and delayed a party of “B” party from moving forward.

“A” Party

2/Lt Waterhouse and 20 other ranks reached their objective – house at X.16.c.60.70 and captured two prisoners with a births Lewis Gun adapted to German ammunition.

The house was then examined and one prisoner captured in cellar. Hose was then flooded with paraffin and burnt down. On leaving this house the OC Party discovered a German hiding underneath a tub and he shot him.

2/Lt Harry Waterhouse was awarded the Military Cross, London Gazette 24.9.1918: In a raid on enemy posts at Le Touret/Essars Sector on the night of 18/18 June he Commanded a platoon and captured an enemy post, taking three prisoners and machine gun. He personally killed one of the enemy at close quarters and it was chiefly owing to his fine example of courage and determination that the attack was successful.

943 Sergeant Harry Waterhouse of Chinley was Commissioned on the 27th March 1917.

“B” Party

Sergt Pope and 20 other ranks were divided by our barrage half the party reached the objective at X.16.c.75.75.

Two Germans were encountered on the way to this house, and these were killed, and papers taken prom their bodies. This house after being searched was also destroyed and the remainder of party joined “C” Party.

203500 Sergeant James Pope was awarded the Military Medal, London Gazette 21.10.1918. For gallantry and devotion to duty during a raid on several enemy posts near Le Touret on the night of 18th-19th June 1918, when he commanded one of the parties in the raid with great success.

Originally from London he enlisted into the Army Reserve in August 1914 and then served with the 9th Battalion (as 4971). He transferred to the 1/5th Battalion in September 1916 and was eventually posted home in September 1918 after receiving a gun shot wound. He was also awarded the Meritorious Service Medal.

“C” Party

2.Lt Moore and 25 other ranks advanced along light railway and found 6 enemy in trench running alongside railway. Three of these were shot and killed in the trench, one bayonetted and two attempted to run towards orchard X16 central. These were both killed.

An Officer with knapsack also attempted to run from post X.16.c.73.90. He was shot at and dropped his pack and greatcoat. He ran for some distance and then fell apparently killed. The pack and greatcoat are sent herewith, also some papers taken from some of the killed enemy.

“D” and “E” Party

One Lewis Gun Section and 2/Lt Dench and 20 other ranks advanced along ditch on north side of RUE DE BOIS and under wire belt located previous daylight patrol of 2nd Lieut Nash. This Officer was unfortunately killed whilst completing an excellent reconnaissance.

2/Lt Joseph Richard Dench was to win the Military Cross for great dash and courage at Lehaucourt on September 29th 1918. He was also awarded two Bars for 3/10/18 (Montbrehain) and 6/11/18 (Prisches). Later served in Ireland with Auxiliaries.  

Casualties

Although no men were reported killed on the patrol, the 1/5th Battalion did in fact suffer 3 men killed that day. It is not known if they had been mortally wounded on patrol.

7627/203257 L/Cpl John Thomas Archer aged 24. Son of William and Catherine Archer of 19 Grayling St., Derby. Arrived in France in December 1916 and only served overseas with 1/5th Battalion. Previously enlisted in Derbyshire Yeomanry in November 1915.

5515/202259 Pte James Robert Trodd aged 39. Son of William Thomas and Ann Trodd, of I, Bell Lane, Ditton, Maidstone. Native of New Hythe, Maidstone. Attested in December 1915 and posted to 3/5th Sherwood Foresters in March 1916. Originally arrived in France in July 1916 and served overseas with the 1/5th and 2/5th Battalions. Previously wounded on 26th August 1917 whilst serving with 2/5th Battalion.

1602/20005/203272 Thomas Watts. From Lenton in Nottinghamshire. A pre-War member of the Robin Hood Rifles who arrived in France with the 46th North Midland Division in February 1915.

On this day 17th June 1918

17.6.18: Hostile artillery more active – especially against left sub sector. Two patrols were out during night.

Lieut.-Col. RW CURRIN DSO took over command of the Brigade during the temporary absence of Brig.-General PR WOOD CB CMG who took over command of the Division during Divisional Commander’s absence on leave.

139 Infantry Brigade: Headquarters War Diary [WO95/2692]

On this day 16th June 1918 – Thomas Hughes was killed in action

93871 Pte Thomas Hughes aged 19. Son of Edward and Emma Hughes of Police Station, Madeley in Crewe. Native of Loggerheads, Market Drayton, Salop.

Thomas was another conscripted soldier who was mobilised in the summer of 1917 and only served overseas with the 1/6th Battalion.


16.6.18: Quiet day. Seven patrols were out during night.

139 Infantry Brigade: Headquarters War Diary [WO95/2692]

70th Trench Duty – 15th – 19th June 1918 “Our left subsection received a good deal of retaliation”

15/6/18 ESSARS: Battalion relieved 8th Sherwood Foresters in the LEFT sub sector of ESSARS Sector.

1/6th Battalion War Diary [WO/95/2694]


15.6.18: The 3rd Division on our left advanced their line West of LOCON under an artillery barrage. Our left subsection received a good deal of retaliation. Otherwise a quite day. Two patrols were out during the night.

200944 Pte William Henry Baldwin killed in action aged 21. Son of Robert and Harriet Baldwin of Long Eaton in Nottingham. Previously served with the 2/5th and 2/6th Battalions. Most likely arrived in France with the 59th Division in spring 1917.

93785 Pte William Buckley killed in action aged just 19. Son of Abraham and Elizabeth Buckley of 23 Albert St., Silverdale in Staffordshire. Most likely mobilised in the summer of 1917 and only served overseas with the 1/8th Battalion.

93567 Pte George Reid Atkinson was mortally wounded aged 19. Son of TB and CJ Atkinson of 63, Hyde Park St., Gateshead. Most likely mobilised in the summer of 1917 and only served overseas with the 1/8th Battalion.

5095/306856 Pte Arthur Charles Lover was mortally wounded aged 24. Son of Walter and Louisa Lover of Croydon in Surrey. Enlisted March 1916 and most likely arrived in before the end of 1916. Only served overseas with the 1/8th Battalion. A resident of Mansfield.

139 Infantry Brigade: Headquarters War Diary [WO95/2692]

On this day 14th June 1918 – ‘A bold daylight reconnaissance’

14.6.18 LONDON GAZETTE: 2/Lieut JF DENNIS MC to be made Lieutenant 25/4/18.

1/6th Battalion War Diary [WO/95/2694]


14.6.18 ESSARS SECTION: Quite day. About 70 rounds Priester Bombs were fired into MES PLAUX and X15.

Fourteen Patrols were out, five of which were by day light

One of the latter was a bold reconnaissance of area X.16.c.60.65. This patrol went out twice during the morning and once during the afternoon, when the Officer was killed by a bullet from house X.16.c.60.65. His body could not be recovered owing to heavy rifle fire.

The Officer in question would appear to be Arthur James Nash who is recorded as killed on the 13th June 1918. see here

139 Infantry Brigade: Headquarters War Diary [WO95/2692]

On this day 13th June 1918 – Lt Arthur James Nash missing on patrol

13.6.18 ESSARS SECTOR: Hostile artillery quite on forward areas. Several rounds of HE shrapnel were fired onto BETHUNE. Registration of certain cross roads was suspected.

Two patrols were out.


“Two previous attempts to raid this post had been made without success and Lt Nash was reported missing believed killed in a daylight raid”

Arthur was the son of James Frederic Nash of 18 Hampton Park in Redland, Bristol. He was 33 years old when killed on patrol.