May 8 Embarked on board T.S.S. EURIPIDES, 2250 troops on board consisting of 23rd and 24th Bns. 21 and 22nd Bns, are on board T.S.S. ULYSSIS both boats passing through MELBOURNE heads on Sunday morning.
13 At KING GEORGES SOUND W.A. mail taken off. Left same morning bound for COLOMBO.
19 Anniversary of birthday (26 yrs.) We are two days off the BIGHT and we are beginning to feel the heat. The sea is calm, hardly a ripple. Flying fish are plentiful. "Ulyssis" buried her 2nd dead. Today there was change of drill hours, early morning jerks 6 to 6.45AM thence 9.15 to 11.30. Afternoon parade 3.15 to 4.30PM. The 23rd Bn. gave their 1st concert at 7p.m. 10.30PM showering.
23 Crossed the BAR last night, air very warm.
25 Arrived at Colombo 10AM Ulyssis and PARLEMO with L'H' on board, also at anchorage.
Two deaths on board T.S.S. EURIPIDES. COLOMBO harbour is exceedingly pretty -- especially its niggers -- whose delight it is to please you by getting one to throw coins overboard while they dive for them -- also they sell articles at double their value. Have just heard news of ITALY's declaration of war against GERMANY.
26 Left Colombo at sunset. Troops of Euripides not allowed leave ashore. "Ulyssis" is flagship.
June 1 Up to date 8 deaths have occurred on board.
3 Sailed past ARABIAN coast and St. AFRICAN coast -- Passed the PYRM islands on which was lighthouse and small township houses appeared to be built of iron, roofs were painted red. On the islands are a small force of native soldiers -- as garrison -- who are under the leadership of an English officer and sergeant. The soldiers were from ADEN. On the ARABIAN coast was a fort which previously belonged to the "Turks" but was taken over by the "British". About 6 miles past PYRM island is a very high rock with Lighthouse on top, a stone dwelling was attached to lighthouse. Looking across towards the African coast one could observe - through the telescope --
several small huts of the bungalow type probably "kraals".
4 Now in the RED SEA. The whole surface of the sea is covered with floating sand. It has the appearance of having had oil poured into the water and a sand storm must have blown over. Have not seen the "Ulysses" for 4 days.
7 Monday morning. Arrived at Pt. SEUZ the cliffs looked very pink as a background to the dark blue sea. Half a doz. small trading boats were anchored here. Red Cross boat here as well. "Billy Hill". and ... left boat for hospital both down with measles. A passenger train runs from here to Pt. SAID, ALEXANDRIA, CAIRO, etc.
The Ulyssis arrived this afternoon and in the evening the mail boat 'OMRAH'both left this evening destination unknown.
8 Blanch's birthday. I wonder what her thoughts are today.
8 The weather is perfect, we expect to sail out of port into the SUEZ CANAL this morning, bags of sand are being taken on board and are being piled around the "bridge". An armed merchantman has just appeared alongside.
June 8 Left Pt. SUEZ at 9AM At intervals of every 4 miles there are Semaphore stations, which control the canal traffic. On both sides of the canal are soldiers doing sentry duty & further out are camps of the various outposts. The soldiers here are mainly Indian Punjabs with several units of the H.A.C. 10 miles from Suez we saw Egyptian doing manouvres. There are trenches on both sides of the canal and barbed wire has been erected at various intervals. At a big bend in the canal, we came upon two gunboats, French and English respectively. We were lined up for the salute and the band played the "Marsellaise" in honour of the French and they "Heep Heep Hooraded" us. Rule Brittania and Red White and Blue was played by the French, further on we passed a hospital (built of iron and wood) a nurse and patients were lined up on the balcony. This place with its red roofed houses and green lawns looked extremely pretty. Near the hospital were some buildings of free stone. Large trees surrounded the building, these trees with its green leaves and red tipped foliage added to the beauty of the place.
June 8 SUEZ CANAL is 80 miles in length & is 12 hrs. steam, passed several motor boats and 5 Holland trading boats. All day we are passing camps of Indian and British soldiers. The camps are protected by barbed wire. The camps consist mostly of huts built of woven palm leaves and they have a refreshing look about them. The Ulyssis and Palemo are steaming just ahead of us, we are now in a narrow part of the canal. Now passing GARE DE KANTARA, several of the 120th PUNJABS are here. G DE K is the prettiest place we've seen on the canal so far. Just passed GARE DE TAP a lot of the H.A.C. are quartered here. A Skirmish took place last sat near G DE K there were a few casualties.
9 Arrived at PORT SAID at 7 p.m on Tuesday 8th. This is a very large port with a very extensive township. Port Said is the busiest place on the Suez. Several destroyers. gunboats, cruisers and aeroplanes are stationed here. An Indian transport (A36) arrived here today and the Indians dis-embarked. The Ulyssis departed at midnight. We are taking on cargo at entrances of canal.
PORT SAID - ALEXANDRIA
June 9 Between two rows of warships and destroyers a small vessel - 300 tons - ran into another with the result that the rammer was sunk within 5 minutes. This collision consequently blocked all traffic and all vessels were held up until the sunken vessel was removed. Several wounded Australian soldiers came aboard today and related the doings of the Australians and Turks. The niggers hang around the boats selling cigarettes oranges & PCs oranges 2/-Doz. cigs. 1/- 100. No one was allowed off the boat while here. Another 10 hrs. steam will take us to ALEXANDRIA. This afternoon there was a trial flight of an aeroplane and hydroplane and they appeared to fly very well.
10 Today the water police began to drive the "Jipps" niggers away from the boat, and our boys, not liking to be interfered with, in their buying from the niggers -- pelted the police with tins, bottles, spuds, etc. Oh Ye Gods, didn't they go some, the police never interfered with the hawkers again. Left here at 9AM for Alexandria.
11 Arrived at ALEXANDRIA at 8AM.
ALEXANDRIA - HELIOPOLIS
June 11 The troops from Ulyssis have landed and have gone on to HELIOPOLIS at the AERODROME.
12 Left ALEXANDRIA at 1PM & arrived at ZIETOUN station, thence at 2 miles march to the AERO CAMP. On our arrival there, we tuckered and slept inwooden huts, rows of which extend to 1 mile in length. Parade hours Reveille 5AM parade 6 to 9AM breakfast thence 10 to 12AM -- Afternoon parade 4.30-7.30PM. Open camp 7.30 to 9.30PM Heliopolis. The City of architecture. Its houses business and private are worth travelling a few hundred miles to see. It is the wonder of every new arrival. Cairo in its E. Railway.
16 Today occurred a very severe dust storm & the heat registered 123 in the shade.
17 Visited the late Sultans Palace 'GHEZIRCH' now used as a hospital, also visited the "Ghezira" clubgrounds, which were once used by the sultan, now used by an English club, the grounds are used for cricket, polo, tennis, etc., a race course is also attached to this extensive ground. The ground with its splendid gardens
HELIOPOLIS ... CAIRO
17 is irrigated by water from the canal which runs alongside the estate, a large equarium alongside the canal was also visited.
24 Recd. orders to go to the Imperial school of instruction for a 3 weeks course of signalling school to begin on the 29th.
1 Route march to 'ABBASSUA'.
11 Visited the PYRAMIDS Drogoman 'HADJI ALI' was our guide. CHEOP the king 2000 yrs. B.C. is supposed to have built the pyramids with the labor of slaves. The large pyramids to be used for the burial of himself and wife (King and Queen). It took 10 yrs. to quarry the stones 10 to cart and build the road and another 10 yrs. to build the pyramids. Oh Ye Gods how hot is was inside. It was only vones (sic? Ed.) but such a vones (sic? Ed.). Not a breath of air was there inside that mass of stone, & perspiration -- well, when I got outside I could have drunk all the drink contained at "Shepherds" and Continental Hotels.
Aug. 1 On Saturday a riot occurred at the 'WAZZA' by Aust. soldiers several houses of unquestionable reputation were burnt down. In consequence of this we were
ALEXANDRIA -- AT SEA
AUG. 1 confined to camp thence Heliopolis was fixed as the boundary. On monday orders were issued that not even officers were allowed out of camp until further notice.
10 The 12 13 & 14th is the 'Baisim" or Christmas festivities of the Musselman and consequently all soldiers are prohibited from going into Cairo in case of disturbance.
30 Everything is packed in readiness to leave the camp at 9.45AM and entrain at 10.45AM thence to ALEXANDRIA & to leave that port for the DARDANELLES. There is plenty of swearing and cursing on a/c of the heaviness and awkwardness(?) of the packs and instruments. Who'd be a signaller. 12 o'clock & havent yet had time for a feed had none since yesterday dinner time so have taken up 3 holes in belt. Spent last night at the 'KURSAAL' this is one of the best shows ever I've seen. Then I met C/R Harvey Russel of the 9th L.H.
Sept. Now on board S.S. NILE the boat is doing 14 knots. Each bn. of this 6th Bge. are in a separate boat, a few Englishmen are on our boat. Enquiries to be made reCpl. Maxwell Davidson officer(?) Fred Sanders of 17th Bn. No. 1185 B. Coy. (No. 1077).
Sept. 3 Arrived at LEMNOS (MUDROS harbour) scores of warships war vessels and troopships are anchored here. We are the first of our Bde. to arrive. Yesterday our skipper dodged the boat around some small islands suspecting submarines.
4 Wireless message recd. that 21st Bn. ('SOUTH WIND') had been torpedoed (no results stated). This evening 23rd Bn. arrived bringing in some of the 21st Bn. reported 17 deaths on 'SOUTHLAND' through shock and drowning. BRIGADIER LINTON is one of the drowned, the torpedo tube entering and exploding in No. 2 hold. LT. COL. LEGGE has been sent to hospital through shock. All H.Q. of the 6th Bde. were on board. Late news states that 40 deaths have occurred.
5 Awaiting arrival of boats to take us off for GALLIPOLI. Yesterday with Lt. HYNES & Gardy (? Ed.) Taylor swam ashore 1 mile distant. The swim was glorious & the weather perfect, the best swim since leaving Australia. Lt. Hynes supplied us with a bonzer feed on returning to boat after having had some exciting experiences.
6 Embarked on 'ABBASIA' at midnight.
6 Transferred from "ABBASSIA" to lighter and landed at dawn at "ANZAC".
7 Bivouaced in BRIDGES RD. & REST GULLY.
9 In the trenches at STEELS & QUINNs POST.
16 Leaving "STEELS" for LONE PINE.
29 Visit of GENERAL 'BIRDWOOD'.
30 Bomb thrown over by TURKS injured Jim STANLEY & BLACKBURN both evacuated. Bomb landed on our overhead cover & sending down showers of dust and filth which spoilt our dinner.
Oct. 1 Enemy aeroplanes dropped 30 bombs around a "monator". The "monator" opened fire & the 'planes dissapeared.
Nov. 8 Fall of snow, began at 5AM & finished at 12 noon. The two previous days, it has been drizzling rain & every thing was slushy & at 1PM it began to freeze.
Czeasers Ghost we don't want any more 'below zero's' a blanket and hard earth isn't exactly a picnic, still "If things don't alter they stay as they are."
29 24th Bn. in L'P'. I'm lucky enough for once to be on the 'phone in Whites VALLEY for two days or so.
Nov. 29 Turks opened fire using every available gun and broomstick bomb they possessed. All guns were trained on LONE PINE. The parapets of 1st firing line were blown down. B5, B8 & PLATEAU SAP was knocked rotten and outside communication was cut off. Clearing parties were buried time after time. Legs arms and bodies vied with each other in their velocity through the air. How those "Howitzers" did hum, they never left anything where they fell.
30 Casualty returns of yesterdays bombardment 350 (all ranks) many are still buried.
31 Everything much quieter. "Abdul" has evidently expended enough ammunition for a while. (This bombardment was the result of the silent stunt, leading up to the evacuation of the Peninsula.
Dec. 19 The final evacuation is being carried out. The heads have done me the honour of picking me for the last party C3. The parties leave beginning on the 18th A1, 2 &3 B1, 2& 3 C1, 2 & 3.
20 Last party to defend 'LONE PINE' 30 of us left at 2.50 AM. Every where there is quiet, it is a most brilliant
ANZAC --- LEMNOS
Dec. 20 moonlight night & the trenches were so deserted that it seemed a bit uncanny. On account of the closeness of the TURKS only 40 yds from us & the many subterranian tunnels connecting between us & the enemy the trenches had to be padded with blankets, also a strip of blanket was put around our feet so as to deaden the noise of tramping feet. We left L'P' via REST GULLY to WILLIAM PIER. While on the pier we saw a huge explosion on RUSSEL's TOP then the fire at SUVLA BAY caused by the burning of the ordnance stores. The flames of this fire caused a reflection for miles around.
21 We left WILLIAM PIER by the 'PRINCE ABBAS' arriving at MUDRAS harbour early yesterday morning, we stayed on various boats all day & at midnight were transferred to H.M.S. 'WATERWITCH' & taken ashore. Thousands of tents all over the island were lit up by candle light & we of our party (like others) wandered around for miles looking for the 6th Bn. camp, we eventually found it, after walking about.
Dec. 21 5 miles, 3/4 of party dropped out, but eventually turned up next morning.
24 200 of us volunteered to go for mail a walk of 2 miles. Men from 2 Divisions turned up at this one big mail depot. We had great fun especially myself, who got most mail in our section. Dismay of Gam when I picked out a big bag of parcels to carry.
25 Christmas Day, all happy & contented, visited CONDIAP & PORTHIANOS (our camp was at SARPI). We had an excursion under the leadership of "BILL"to THERMOS, on our way there we climed over rocky hills. It was a glorious day - a little on the hot side but we were recompensed by having a wash at the ancient hot springs hundreds of years old where the famous HELEN OF TROY bathed. How we enjoyed that wash, words can't express the gratitude we felt for that wash. On this island, run by the GREEKS, a good many slap-dash shops sold oranges nuts chocolates and biscuits, which constituted the main things we could buy, sickly cream and coffee was sold at 2d. a time in condensed milk tins. While on the island we had bayonet drill & schirmishing & they rocked it in hot & strong.
LEMNOS - EGYPT
Jan. 1 Another holiday for the New Year all OK.
9 Left LEMNOS for EGYPT by the "MINNEWASKA" landed safe and sound
11 at ALEXANDRIA.
12 Travelled at midnight by open air truck cold as -- & arrived early this morning at TEL-EL-KEBIR, where our two divisions were to camp. All tents were erected by this afternoon, everyone merry. This place is a sandy desert - a railway runs alongside the camp also a channel. The train runs to CAIRO & ISMAILIA & the channel water is from the NILE river.
Feb. 2 Left for ZIETOUN for course of signalling at Imperial training school. The Bn. left two days previously for the "SPHINX" at SAINI desert.
25 Breakup of school BILLY, I & NZs ...
26 Caught train at ZIETOUN at 1.30PM & had an enjoyable ? ride in coal truck. Snowy Verity : as a nigger! At MATERIAH passed dismantled wireless station (the 2nd largest in the world). Alongside the station a penal settlement was passed & about 300 convicts (in chains) were working; Passed TEL-EL-KEBIR at
EGYPT -- SAINI DESERT
FEB. 26 4PM 8th Bde. took us for reinforcements & we pulled their legs about GALLIPOLI. Arrived at ISMAILIA camp (MOASCAR) at 6.30PM & then march to FERRY POST crossed the SUEZ CANAL & put up for the night at the "STAGING" camp.
27 Moved off at 11AM for 24th Bns. position 16 miles from ISMAILIA. That glorious tramp over loose sand with full pack & equipment. "Dinna Forget".
Arrived at 24th at 4.30PM 5PM Now as happy as "Larry".
28 Ran out line and did shift on phone.
29 Did buzzer & flag work & killed time in general.
Mch. 1 Still killing time by playing cards. How dry we are!
3 Doing night shift, messages in galore. Billy Watson wanted to know if the line had ... hot. Capt. Frawley slept outside sig. office.
4 Had to dig the Capt. out of the sand. "Gott Straffe" these duststorms.
13 Now at "NEFISCHE" in tents, big mail arrived. Guess I'll engage a typist.
14 Confirmation in orders as L/Corp. March to Ferry point practicing billiting(? Ed.).
15 Getting ready to leave for FRANCE.
16 Recd. new phones, new electric lamps cable wires(?) etc. Mock Night attack. The Colonel compliments us on our work.
MOASCAR -- AT SEA
Mch. 17 Review of the 6th Bde. by HRH PRINCE ALBERT EDWARD (19 yrs of age).He is the 1st son of HM KING GEORGE. We are the 1st Bde. to be inspected by him & the 2nd Div. leave for FRANCE first. Our old Pal LT. GENERAL BIRDWOOD accompanied the Prince of Wales.
19 Left MOASCAR ...PM for ALEXANDRIA (per) cattle & goods vans and arrived at 8.30AM. We had an awfully freezing journey. Ice chests are a cheap way of entraining troops.
20 Now on board the LAKE MICHIGAN. Half & half of 23rd & 24th on board, others on board the "MAGDALINE."
21 Left ALEXANDRIA at 4.30PM yesterday. A "Scotty" piped up "Au Revoir" from the wharf. Now on the "submarine .light(? Ed.)" track, some are feeding the fish. Some blighter pinched my water-proof & blankets. A chap wants to travel like the Jippos - wear everything they possess.
22 Our convoy ( a minelayer) is zig zagging directly forward of us. We are on the trade route.
23 Convoy signalled "Good Bye" & left us. Signalling between us & two destroyers, warning us of submerged boat close to MALTA. 11AM wireless S O S received from torpedoed transport "MINEOPOLIS" who is 20 miles behind us
MARSEILLE -- LYONS
23 & is in the same lat.&lon. as where we were 10 hrs. previous.
24 Weather perfect & sea calm several boats passing our starboard bow southwards. 2PM passed the island of -- The island belongs to ITALY & is used as a convict settlement about 200 stone houses were observed from the boat, the island appeared to have stunted bushes growing on it & no sign of life showed through the telescope. We expect to arrive at MARSEILLES Sunday evening.
25 9AM Just passing the Island of SARDINIA a couple of fishing boats, sails set, are moving around the island.
26 Arrived at MARSEILLE at 4.30PM & entrained at 11.30PM
27 We stopped at ORANGE for 3 hrs. & had breakfast. Hot coffee & rhum was served to us gratis by the French Red X Society.
28 Stopped at LYONS for 1/2 an hour. The French are not enthusiastic - not a bit. I dont think. The elderly men they are extremely polite & the women Ye Gods they throw kisses about for the joy of it. Talk about vivacity they beat all. This place is an important centre, with its electric
LYONS -- REBECQ
Mch. 28 cars, the beautiful scenic affects - by the rivers & boulevards. The trip is worth all the discomforts one has to put up with & one & all are in raptures over the beautiful scenery. This is a two days trip & lucky me I'm travelling in a 1st class carriage & everything is serene. What a contrast after the JIPPO'S dirty & open trucks. Spring time. The almond & peach trees are out in blossom, wild flowers in profusion. Every available piece of land is cultivated or grown on & almost every plot has a few vines.
Arrived at LES LAVMES-ALESIA at 4AM & stayed here for breakfast until 6.15AM. Hot coffee & rhum was again supplied to us by the Red X Society. Arrived at JUVINY (10 miles from PARIS) at 5.30PM The train there branched off from the P.L.M. line to the E.T.A.T. Coys. line thence on to the -- line.
29 Arrived at AIRE at 7.30AM here we filed out after an odd 500 mile journey which previously was timed to be done in 52 hrs. From here we marched to REBEC
Mch. 29 Yesterday afternoon we passed Verseilles and we saw the castle (lake & grounds) which formally belonged to KING HENRY XI
30 At 11.30 the remainder of 24th (A Coy. & details) arrived, put in a freezing night, could't get warm, frost everywhere. All details billeted in a stable (Oh, how happy we will be) 6th Bde. HQRS as at ROQUETOIRE.
Apr. 4 Finish of 24th Bns. bathing parade at AIRE. 6th Bde. staff having left ROCQUETOIRE & 5 of their sigs remain behind so that we have direct communication with 2nd Div.
5 Confirmation of OTTO SWEETLAND as Regl. orderly corporal. Arrival of first mail in France. Bde. having taken half of 24th mail on with them.
6 Just packed up ready to move off tomorrow at 11AM.
7 Left Rebecq at 1PM & 2 miles down the road we were lined up to do honours the Gen. JOFFRE & after a 1/4 hr. wait. He with SMITH-DOREEN went past in a motor car. An old French tabby driving a horse & cart objected to being held up & she advised all and sundry so they had to let her go.
LA HALLABEAU -- FLEURBAIX
Apr. 7 Passed through AIRE & on to HAVERSVILLE where we stayed the night.
8 Moved off at 8AM & after a 14 mile march over flagstones we brought up at STEENWERCK(? Ed.). All the troops were absolutely buggered on a/c of the long march with full packs, etc. over the cobblestones nearly everyone had sore feet.
9 Last night had a bath in the creek the water was ciy cold, but I felt OK afterwards. This morning Bde. had a foot inspection. Over 100 shrapnel shells were fired at an enemy aeroplane which was very high in the air but she escaped. We move off tomorrow for the trenches Fleurbaix & Armentieres.
10 Arrived at FLEURBAIX at 12.30p.m. & took over phone at 3PM from 4th Bn. Royal Scots, the 15th & 16 Bn. R. Scots work together in the line. Fritz this afternoon shelled the township & some of the building suffered. Things were very lively for a time. The French people still continue to transact business & the shops are well stocked.
Apr. 11 Had a walk around the town, houses & churches everywhere were knocked rotten, some roofless others with walls knocked bandy & others just a heap of debris. This morning fritz shelled a farm dwelling & set alight to it & this afternoon the whole place is completely gutted. The inhabitants of the dwelling only moved out yesterday which appears suspicious, although a battery is alongside which may have been the cause of the shelling suspecting it to be a FOP. From 8AM to 1PM drizzling rain, now clearing up. Yesterday Br. HQRS (trench) was bombarded & signal office was set alight. 23rd Bn. who had dumped their equipment in the office, lost everything, altogether 90 shells fell around HQRS (FORAY FARM).
14 Weather absolutely rotten, a cold biting wind is blowing a drizzling rain & sleet is falling. 23rd report 3 men shot by snipers. This is the 8th casualty (by snipers) since being here.
16 Yesterday Fritz shelled our domicile & another building 10 chains away, first they gave us about 100 shells of lidite & then peppered us
FLEURBAIX -- FORAY HOUSE
Apr. 16 with shrapnel & 77s, the other building was knocked bandy & it collapsed within 2 hrs. & We, well, we still exist.
23 Grand exhibition of aeroplane shooting. Thousands of pounds worth of shells spent yesterday & today firing on enemy aeroplanes. This afternoon we brought 1 enemy TAUBE & they brought down one of ours.
24 Easter Monday, first fine day for a week. 20 aeroplanes are flying directly overhead.
25 Anniversary of the starting at ANZAC. Div.(? Ed.) order that each Bde. sends 6 men from Bde. on 8 days leave, ... dated from when they embark at BOULOGNE. Snowy Verity left ...
26 A real bonzer day, yesterday we went to ERQUINHEIM for a hot water bath & it was OK. We stripped in one compartment then went into a room where large vats (old brewery) filled with hot water constituted our bath, after which we were supplied with clean u/clothes in exchange for our filthy ones. French girls (who wash the clothes) constantly pass to & fro, when we strip, but custom is everything & it is merely the mental attitude which concerns the question of moral or immoral.
FLEURBAIX -- L'HALLOBEAU
Apr. 28 Urgent signals & gas alarm gongs (STRUMBUS horns) going. 'Stand to' ordered. I had just in & couldn't find my pants for a while. Ordered by CO to lay line at once from HQ to sap. After struggling about amongst barb wire entanglements we had just finished laying line when 'CARRY ON' was given. The gas attack turned out to be gas arising from exploding shells. B. Coy rushed from supports to the firing line (across country)..
29 This morning our Artillery opened up on Fritz & kept the bombard up for 3 hrs. & things sounded very lively while it lasted. Left FLEURBAIX at 5PM arrived at L. HALLOBEAU at 6.30PM & took over from 7th Bde. sigs. at 6.45.
May 1 Rode on cycle to Bde. HQRS this afternoon to ERQUINHEIM thence on to ARMENTIERES.
2 Today shells fell amongst 27th Bn. as they were being billeted & 1 man was blown to pieces & 3 others injured.
May 2 Hobo Hughes returns from Bde & we have a Champagne night 1 Doz. bottles @ 6 Francs.
11 Went to baths & had a decent change. Visit by Gen. Birdwood today.
17 Went to concert at ERQUINHAM.
20 " to LA MENEGATE & had first test of helmets under gas & tear bombs.
22 Capt. McKenzie who demonstrated at LA MENEGATE gas school was today killed at ERQUINHEIM by shell, 3 little kiddies also killed same time.
23 Steady showers falling.
28 Battalion to move off to ROLANDERIE FARM tomorrow at 9AM.
29 At ROLANDERIE in wooden huts.
June 1 This afternoon Fritz shelled a battery 1/2 mile from here, they landed 40 shells all around it. One anti-aircraft shell landed 10 yds from one hut but no damage done.
2 This morning a balloon at LA HALLABEAU broke adrift from the morings & rose rapidly before the observers were aware of it. They alighted by Parachutes.
June 4 Slight showers & thundery, cold wind, orders to hand in final blanket.
5 A heavy bombardment of Fritz line; was to have taken place this morning, but owing to heavy rain it was postponed.
8 Bs. birthday.
12 Left ROLANDERIE at 3.30PM arrived at our billets in ARMENTIERES. On arrival discussion arose between 24th & 25th Bns. as to the HQRS sigs & orderly billets. We have swapped twice & still things are unsettled.
13 Raining all day. 12 midnight, water has just broken through roof & swamped our posseys? We move into a good billet tomorrow.
16 The 7th Bde. were this morning inspected by Gen. LEGGE after the inspection they travelled to STEENWERCK thence by Rail to YPRES.
22 Left for trenches at Bars GRENIER, in advance of Bn. then on a/c of heavy bombardment Bn. didn't come into trenches so we returned to old place at Rue MARLE.
June 23 In the trenches again, deadly bombardment. Fatigue work on stores for HQ.
24 During the day visited the supports & firing line & inspected site for lamp station, site previously selected too open to shrapnel fire ordered it to be thickly sandbagged. While in firing line enemy opened heavy bombardment. This evening our artillery opened fire on enemy supports & firing line
25 Fine weather, slightly cloudy, our aeroplane fleet attacked support & firing line of enemy. They also dropped incendiary bombs on enemy balloon & it was a very facinating sight.
27 At 12PM began a heavy bombarment of enemy trenches opposite our Bde. position. The N.Zs on our left are having a raid tonight hence the bombardment opposite our possy to distract the enemy from the raiding position.
29 At 12PM began a severe bombardment of enemy trenches, first on firing line thence in a semi-circle around the objectives to be raided by the 6th Bde. This is our 1st raid 200 taking part, the 24th were the first to reach enemy trenches & were the first back with prisoners (5)
29 The other Bns. could not bring back any prisoners on a/c of the heavy opposition. The result of raid was - between 80 & 100 of the enemy killed by the raiders, whilst our losses were 7 killed & 15 wounded & 2 missing. The raiders brought back many trophies viz. swords helmets rifles etc. This raid was all the more successful on a/c of the fact that the barb wire was not completely cut & that according to a prisoner, the enemy were aware of our raid on a/c of a N.Z. (stretcher bearer) deserter giving them information.
30 The 4th Div. are taking over the battery & infantry position from us in 6 days time.
July 3 Relieved by the N.Z. Rifle brigade, the 4th Bn. taking over our position in trenches at CHAPELLE ARMENTIERES. Relief completed at 11.40PM 2/7/16.
All very quiet. Raining all the time during relief & after a 10 mile march through water & slush we finally landed at LA CRECHE at 5AM
4 Visited BAILIEUL a large town & had a good time.
LA CRECHE -- AMIENS TRIP
July 8 Left "LA CRECHE" at 1.30PM & arrived at "MERRIS" ( a small village of "PRADELLE") at 7PM.
9 Left "PRADELLE" at 11AM & arrived at "EBBLINGHEM" & put up at the Mayor's residence.
10 Left "EBBLINGHEM" at 10AM for "WARDRECQUES".
11 Left "WARDRECQUES" at 7.15AM with transports (in charge of panniers) & arrived at "ARQUES" at 9AM to entrain.
12 Left "ARQUES" at 11.30AM by train passed through ST. OMER thence through BOLOGNE, past ETAPLES (the Aust. training camp) thence through St.ELOI. The railway practically follows the RIVER SOMME all the way. We finally arrived at ARMIENS where we dis-entrained. The scenery of the country was unsurpassed & the trip one to be always remembered. It was like the MARSEILLE - PARIS - AIRE trip. We arrived at ARMIENS at 8PM & untrucked transports etc. From the railway siding the whole body marched through the main streets of ARMIENS. The French people especially the girls were hilarious with
ARMIENS -- TOUTENCOURT
12 joy, they threw kisses & pressed wine etc. upon us. "VOOLAY VOU MOMBRASSAY"was what most girls asked, hand shakes & souvenirs collectors in galore. This was the first occasion of Australian troops passing through their City. We marched past nearly 4 miles of buildings & splendid avenues. It was a never-to-be-forgotten sight & experience. We had a spell about 3 1/2 miles out & had tea & then proceeded on to "St. SAVAEUR".
13 We are now billeted at ST. SAVAEUR. This is a fair sized village & 3 of our Bns. are camped here.
16 Bn. moved this morning at 10.30AM for RAINNEVILLE 8 1/4 miles march, arrived at 2.40PM.
17 This morning lined up & inspected by a French woman who was trying to identify some suspected individual who stole 400 Francs from her shop. This village has rather a forlorn & delapidated appearance.
18 Left RAINVILLE at 11AM & rested by roadside for lunch, some cows even close by & some of our chaps milked them. Gen. BIRDWOOD has just passed us.
19 Arrived at TOUTENCOURT at 4PM yesterday light showers falling
July 19 Sleeping in huts, no sleep last night on a/c of extreme cold so got up & promenaded for a spell.
21 Left TOUTENCOURT at 9AM & arrived at VARANNES at 1PM & then went for a walk to German prisoners camp.
27 Left VARANNES at 5AM & arrived at ALBERT at 8AM Our Bde. takes over firing line tonight; we in supports. We are busy cleaning rifles & having tin diamond discs put on our backs.
28 Arrived at destination last night 5 1/2 miles from "Albert" & have taken over trenches. Lost & wandering in No Mans land. Shrapnel & H.Es is simply hellish sigs acting as runners & guides. Sigs are in deep German dugout 20 ft.deep electric lights were used here, fittings still remain. In large hand painted letters over the mess room are the words "GOTT, STRAFF ANGLAIS".
29 6th & 7th Bdes charged & endeavoured to take 2 lines of trenches. There was a bollocks up, 7th Bde. failed to take their position & 23 Bn. had to fall back one trench on a/c of their Right flank not being covered.
July 29 Our Bn. casualties up to now today 168. Both yesterday & today it was a perfect "HELL". This evening while returning to "SAUSAGE VALLEY" (after having guided a party in) BILLY HILL was shot through the heart by machine gun bullet.
Bn. now camped in saps at SAUSAGE VALLEY near the "CRATER" on the Albert-Bapaume Rd.
30 Last night I had the first nights sleep for 4 nights. I slept only 10 yds from guns of battery which were going all night. We've had plenty to eat since being here. An aeroplane left FRANCE & flew to BERLIN & dropped "PAMPHLETS" thence on to RUSSIA & when over AUSTRIA had to descend on a/c of dirty sparkling plugs & he was captured. He did 850 miles in one lap. At POZIERES, one could take a 1000 acre patch & you wouldn't a piece of ground not turned up, on which you could place a threepenny piece, so heavy are the bombardments in this area. A chap feels like shaking hands with himself when he gets out. Today the weather is very hot. Our casualties in this area to date approx 250.
Aug. 3 The 1st & 2nd of month the enemy fire was normal. Last night we bombarded Fritz severly -- The Anniversary of the French declaration of War on the "Huns". Tonight we hop the parapets. My "Kindom" for a Blighty says many.
4 Left SAUSAGE VALLLEY at 6PM for trenches got mixed up with the 22nd Bn. & kept with MAJOR McKIE (since killed in charge this evening). We were blocked in sap by 7th Bde & others whilst in "DINKUM ALLEY". Fritz kept up a deadly barrage & gave us "HELL" one shell landing near top of sap buried 3 of us, got out alright. From "DINKUM ALLEY" hopped sap & did a dash along road for "KAY" got blocked there, so made back for CONCRETE HOUSE (on GIBRALTER) thence struck out along old sunken road for "CEMETARY" HQRS.
Machine gun bullets, 77s & HEs in abundance. Earth torn up everywhere, our chaps scattered about . We were walking over scores of our own dead & wounded in the semi-darkness.
Aug. This evening it was "HELL" with a vengeance we passed a 22nd Bn. C.S.M. who had gone mad. We 9 sigs who had started off together found ourselves scattered 3 of us were together at front line & were on our way back - while charge was on - looking for HQRS near the cemetary, when Vic Hughes got his Blighty, Alex Munro & Arthur Kayburn? also wounded - 3 sigs at a time. 3 other sigs stopped in dugout near "GIBRALTER" and wouldn't venture out & come up. I found HQRS, the first sig to report & straight away I had to run out a line to Cement house (3/4 mile) got tear shelled while running out line, fixed everything up but the line had been chewed up while running it out. I was absolutely "buggared" having been buried 3 times & gassed within two hours, so I took a good pull at the "Demijohn" (Rhum) & had an hours spell at Bde. before returning.
5 Returned to HQ at 4AM & found that 5 other sigs had just turned up, so they ran out wire, which was cut to pieces they ran out 2 more & they lasted 5 minutes. In the afternoon Bde. ran out 2 wires
Aug. 5 which never worked. So 5 of us sigs acted as runners, 3 evacuated wounded, 1 shell shock, & 3 others who wouldn't venture out of their warren. Heavy fire was kept up all day, in the evening Fritz put up a heavy barrage & completely demolished "KAY SAP", & a pitiful sight it was, as I cut across it, from Cemetery H.Q to Bde. HQ with a message at 4.30AM - scores & scores of our men buried & 1/2 buried, about 50 were lying about severly wounded, nothing but shell holes & dead & wounded was left to mark what was once "KAY SAP". No stretcher bearers were available to carry away the wounded for a while.
6 We moved out of trenches to "TARA" HILL. 4th Div. relieved us, & just as we were preparing to go to sleep Fritz lobbed shells around & one went into the deserted gun pit where COL. R. WATSON, Mjr. MANNING, CAPT. TATNALL, CAPT. PLANT & Lt. CARVISK? were asleep. Only COL. WATSON escaped with severe shell shock, the others were killed, 4 of our best officers gone in a second.
7 Moved out this morning & billeted at WARLOY-BAILLON
Aug. 8 WARLOY is a fairly large place & it boasts of several canteens. 1st & 2nd Divs. are camped here. Our losses in last stunt approx.- 24th Bn. 400 Cs. 22nd Bn. 650 cas's - 1st Div. 8000 Casualties 2nd Div. 9,500 Casualties.
10 Jnr. L/C. Leo McCartin of 22nd sigs was today made O.C. of 22nd Sig section.
11 Leaving WARLOY at 12.30PM we were lined up along the road at 2PM & were inspected by KING GEORGE PRINCE EDWARD & GEN. BIRDWOOD. This is the 2nd time I've seen KING GEORGE previous time was in "Ausy", 2nd time also young "Eddy", whom I saw at MOASCAR (EGYPT). After the inspection we continued on our journey & brought up at an apple orchard, where we camped for the night sleeping on the grass. Capt. NICHOLAS was today awarded the D.S.O. on a/c of his machine gun exploit.
12 Left LA VICOGNE (apple orchard) at 11.30AM & after 8 mile march brought up at BERTEQUCOURT. "Berteaucourt" lies in a deep valley & through the valley following its course
BERTEAUCOURT -- POZIERES
Aug. 12 runs the Railway AMIENS-PARIS etc.(Marseilles & ...) & also the SOMME river.
16 Here we have several hours a day drilling on the valley slopes. I visited several villages from here ST. GUEU etc.
17 This evening had night operations 3/4 mile from ...
18 Moved off from BERTEAUCOURT at 8AM & arrived at LA VICOGNE.
19 Left LA VICOGNE at 9AM & arrived at TOUTENCOURT at 12 noon we slept in wooden huts this evening.
20 Left TOUTENCOURT at 10AM & arrived at HARPONVILLE near ALBERT.
21 Left HARPONVILLE at 11.30AM & arrived at ALBERT at 6PM.
22 We move off to SAUSAGE VALLEY this morning.
23 Arrived at trenches 21st 23rd & 24th Bns. in & 22nd Bn. in reserve doing fatigue work.
25 21st & 24th Bns. advanced this morning at 4AM taking two lines of trenches. The position is well maintained. MORAY FARM was their object but found too heavily garrisoned. Several of 21st Bn. captured owing to them going beyond their objective. We "sigs" carried bombs for this stunt up to F. line.
POZIERES -- GEZAINCOURT
Aug. 27 Relieved from trenches by 15th Bn. 4th Div. at 2AM this morning & walked out independently to ALBERT. Slept in billet on a/c of rain.
28 Left ALBERT at 8AM & arrived at WARLOY at 12AM & slept in our old billets of our previous visit.
29 Left WARLOY for HERRISART at 8AM Our allotted billets at HERRISART are flooded out accomodation hard to find. Lieut? Les Nicholls & I induced a Frenchy to take us in for the night. Francs does wonders, the others had a sit-up sleep.
30 Moved off from HERRISART at 7AM & arrived at BONNEVILLE at 10.30PM. On our way through CONTAY we passed several Canadian units who are to relieve the Australians.
Sep. 1 Still at BONNEVILLE, not a bad place but estaminets are scarce. Yes Lt. Gen. BIRDWOOD presented ribbons for valour shown at POZIERES.
3 Left BONNEVILLE at 8AM & arrived at GEZAINCOURT this afternoon at 4PM.
4 Rained heavily this morning.
" " " evening.
DOULLENS -- OUDERDOM
FRANCE -- BELGIUM
Sep. 5 The anniversary of our Bde. landing at ANZAC. This afternoon we leave at 5.10PM to entrain at 7.30PM at DOULLENS & proceed to destination unknown. Moved off at 8PM in dirty horse boxes & after a long journey, raining all the
6 time we disentrained at PROVEN (BELGIUM) at 3AM Left the station at 3.30AM & marched to "WINNIPEG" CAMP ("DICKIEBUSCH" -- "OUDERDOM"). This camp was taken over from the Canadians. The weather during the trip was rather chilly, but I slept nearly all the way from Doullens to Proven. The roads on the way from the stn to camp was in a rotten condition.
7 Ran out wires to Bde.
8 Cricket match H.QRS versus A. Coy. we won but ... by an innings.
9 Went to Gas school for two days instruction & I in turn instruct H.QRS on new bore respirator etc. Gas school was held at BUSEBOOM.
11 Sports of all kinds on today, Bn. sports 500 Francs in prize money, weather perfect. Went to Scottish woods to see Bob McKing who is in the 44th Bn.?
OUDERDOM -- YPRES
Sep. 27 Mjr. NICHOLAS left on leave to England & Lt. COL. FITZGERALD has taken over the command of battalion.
Oct. 2 At Bde. for 3 days telephone school.
5 Finished school & visited POPERINGHE & had a fling about the town.
7 Concert & movies in hall.
14 Left OUDERDOM at 6.30PM & marched to railway station & entrained for YPRES. On alighting, a moonlight night , we marched through that once beautiful city, now absolutely in ruins, every building practically razed to the ground. We arrived in supports at 11PM H.Q. supports only 3/4 miles from the City.
16 Visited different sections around firing line.
17 Now sitting at FULLERPHONE devilish cold draught here.
20 Left YPRES supports at 1AM relieved by the 23rd London Bn. marched to Stn. & entrained to BELGIUM-FRANCE border & then landing in France we proceeded by foot to STEENEVOORDE arriving at our billets at 4.30AM night cold & icy.
21 Cold & shivery last night but slept warm as Les Readman & I bunked together.
Oct. 22 Left STEENEVOORDE at 10AM & marched 12 miles to NOORDPEENE arriving here at 5.30PM We are billeted at a beautiful Chateau, formally the property of a French general, who presented this beautiful place to the French Govt. A splendid - well laid out - garden & moat surrounds the Chateau. We HQs slept on the 2nd floor of this mansion.
22 Left NOORDPEENE at 9.30AM , a grand day for a march, we passed through deep valleys, the scenery was great, we enjoyed the march, in spite of our heavy packs.
24 After a journey of 8 miles we arrived at BAYENGHEM(near ST. OMER) at 2.55PM After a rest we continued our journey at 11.30 .m. along the road to
26 ST. OMER & arrived there at 2AM We got into horse-boxes ("filthy" isn't the word) & after a journey of approx 140 miles we landed at LONGPRE - 20 miles either side to ABBOTSFORD & ARMIENS. Thence a march of 6 1/2 miles to BRUCAPMS, where we are now billeted.
27 This morning at 10AM we were picked up 4 miles from billets
ARMIENS -- CREST TRENCH
Oct. 27 on the ARMIENS-ALBERT road by motor omnibuses. The 6th & 7th Bde. all in motor transport 600 motors in all followed each other in one long line through ARMIENS thence on to BUIRE a place of slush & mud & very poor billeting accomodation. Our Bde. is all quartered here. The 1st Div. has relieved the 5th Div.
28 Raining all day
31 Still raining
Nov. 2 Left Buire for MONTAUBAN by train, thence a march through 6" to 1 ft. of slush up to DELVILLE WOOD, where we bivouaced for the night on wet ground.
3 Everyone wet through. This morning we got sand bags & tarpaulins to make a hut, had barely finished when the rain came down in torrents.
4 Left this morning for CREST TRENCH. Crest Trench - shallow sap water 1 ft. deep no dougouts no covering & raining all the time.
CREST TRENCH - DELVILLE WOOD
Nov. 4 Pulled out of CT this evening to carry ration up the line to & Bde. my first time in gum boots. Fell into shell hole (4 to 5 ft. of water inside of it) & got a good ducking. Oh! what a beautiful night, dark, raining, shell holes everywhere slippery (This night has caused the re-writing of the old diary). After tramping about all night, or rather slipping about, since it was all I could do to walk, without using the rifle as a crutch.
5 Got back to C.T. at 2.30AM all clothes wet & doing a shiver. Got permission at Noon to go back to camp to dry clothes. "B" Coy had to do 2 trips to the trenches.
6 The 7th Bde. had a charge (25th & 27th Bns.) at 6AM. It was facinating to watch the bombardment from Crest Trench. Returned to "Delville Wood". &th Bde. men suffering badly from trench feet & rheumatism.
8 Doing buzzer practice in canvas hut, when shells burst all around our hut, killed 1 O/R, wounded 2 O/R. It got too hot for us, so we went over to Division to get out of
FLERS -- FRICOURT
Nov. 8 range & while there, watched two "TANKS" crawling along over 2 ft. of slush & negotiating shell holes with ease.
9 Urgently ordered up to "TURK" LANE & stayed in sap all night & did a freeze.
11 C & D Coys in trenches did a stunt, 1 O/R killed they took 2 trenches & straightened up our line.
12 Came out of trenches last night.
14 Off to trenches again at FLERS, we pozied on the TERRACE, ground frozen, shelling fairly quiet, except on the ridge & around disabled 'TANK".
15 The thaw set in, result ground in a horribly boggy condition, we are acting as runners & guides as well as manning the phones.
21 Relieved by Nth. LANES - 1st Div. "A devil of a night."
22 Left the QUARRY by train & arrived at "DERNANCOURT".
24 Marched back to FRICOURT, "SYDNEY" CAMP ground like elsewhere, very boggy, but huts "Tres Bon." Companies on road repairing.
29 3 of us at "Adelaide" camp with C 7 D Coys.
ADELAIDE CAMP -- RIBEMONT
Nov. 29 Anniversary of bombardment of LONE PINE.
30 " " grand retaliation by navy on ACHI BABA & trenches.
Dec. 10 Battalion moved to POMMIERS REDOUBT camp, we are billeted in huts.
12 Heavy fall of snow this morning.
13 Leave to AMIENS, two days TRES BON.
23 Left "POMMIERS" & whole Bn. moved to "ADELAIDE" CAMP.
24 Saw Lt. Gen. BIRDWOOD strolling around
25 Spent Christmas Day in peace at "Adelaide" camp.
Jan. 1 "New Years Eve". Every one jovial & very merry.
3 Left "ADELAIDE" CAMP for NEEDLE TRENCH. We put in 2 days there & 3 days in the firing line. THISTLE TRENCH.
8 Back to "NEEDLE" TRENCH & at 12PM two companies & HQs moved back to ADELAIDE CAMP & two companies stopped at C & D camps.
15 Left ADELAIDE camp to entrain at the "QUARRY" MONTAUBAN thence per trucks to BUIRE & a march from there to RIBEMONT.
16 Now billeted in various broken down houses, raining heavily.
Jan. 17 Snowing very heavily .
18 " " "
21 Weather very cold, all water frozen. billets very draughty, 10 below zero.
24 Gen' parade on field of snow & Bde. inspected by GEN. SMYTHE.
25 Bn. practicing new French manouvres.
29 We leave at 10AM & march to BECOURT (8 miles).
Feb. 1 Left BECOURT for "SCOTS" REDOUT. T.L. READMAN retns. from leave.
4 We leave here tomorrow evening for the trenches.
5 In the trenches -- I'm neutral.
9 Bn. retd. from supports, now camped at GORDON camp.
14 Moved from GORDON camp to C. CAMP FRICOURT.
17 Bn. moved into the line this evening
18 Arrived at trenches H.Q 2000 yds behind firing line (something unusual). Took over phones at 10PM.
19 Col. & Adj. lose their heads on a/c of Phones. ... (buzzer unit) & a 100 & 1 different things going wrong we've never had such a crook time before.
Feb. 20 Have finished reading "Daddy long legs" (by Jean Webster) which I read at odd moments. It is a real human book & I enjoyed reading it. This last 2 evenings have been to rations dump, pitch dark, plenty of slips in the mud & slush & plenty of swearing by some, our dug out is 150 yds from H.Q & situated in a sunken road with steep sides & a chap visiting his dugout always takes a header in the dark.
23 Came out of trenches last night & had a 7 mile march back in the dark & got back after several sprawls in the slush.
24 10PM All "standing to" word just come through that Germans are evacuating opposite our positions. 1/2 fighting strength ordered up to supports.
25 "Stand down" at 1AM At 2PM we left for firing line 26th Avenue. Germans have gone back 20 miles in places. Now in dug out of 22nd Bn. uncertain as to where we take over.
Feb. 25 Orders to take over from 22nd Bn. Major JAMES asked for 2 HQ sigs to go up top with him so Charlie Mitchell & I toddle up. We ran out line following up infrantry Bn. makes a new line, we have communication 1/2 hour after taking over new possy. We establish HQ at WARLENCOURT in Pigeon house.
27 Relieved at 12 Midnight by 27 & 28 Bns. & we return to camp at PRICOURT "C".
Mch. 2 We leave for the line again this evening.
3 Last night we took over from 26th Bn. at the Right of the BUTTE DE WARLENCOURT, conditions fairly quiet.
6 We were relieved last night by the 23rd Bn. & we returned to SUSSEX CAMP (RESERVES).
7 Came up to LE SARS, now in trenches, dug-outs very cold.
8 Heavy snow this morning.
10 Moved up to supports (21st in line).
12 This evening Fritz is moving back. Bn. moved up with 21st Bn. towards LOUPART Wood & GREVILLERS (village).
13 We relieve 21st Bn. & continue the advance through GREVILLERS.
GREVILLERS --"The Advance."
Mch. 13 Asked to take charge in keeping up
14 communications with front line & Bn. Could
15 not get wire from Bde. so had to roll up old 'Fritz' wire & join up with what we had. It was rather hellish up there, the worst I've experienced more so than Pozieres, it was absolutely marvelous the way I escaped being killed for 2-1/2 hrs in the thickest bombardment & being sniped at as well. Communication well kept up by the section during our stunts. Section heartily congratulated by our Colonel (Smile, Boys, Smile!) .
16 Back to Reserves at Seven Elms.
17 Retd. to camp at BAZENTIN to straighten up.
18 A Bonzer day, like Ausy weather we expect to move up tomorrow to BAPAUME which was taken on the 16th.
19 Moving this afternoon to "BECOURT' Camp.
20 At BECOURT Camp have taken over Bde sig offices until 6th Bde arrive.
22 Left "BECOURT" this morning, now at "LE SARS" companies doing salvage work principally from EUCOURT LE ABBS. Bn. has salvaged over L.8,000 worth of munitions etc.
MAMETZ -- NOREUIL
Mch. 28 Back to "MAMETZ" Bde camp. Out for a rest at last, begining with jerks & drill.
30 Moved from MAMETZ this morning to BECOURT camp.
Apr. 1 Took charge of Bde signal office at Transport lines "La BOISELLE."
4 Very heavy snow fall also heavy rains.
5 Took a trip on motor lorry from LA BOISELLE to BAPAUME, a very interesting journey.
6 Raining like --- all day. Good Friday.
13 Finish of telephone. Bde. transports & all move up to VAULX, we camp in open. Visit of Jack's.
14 We moved up to NOREUIL, we all dig in, ground sloppy. Along this gully are several gun batteries & many units of troops, shelling here fairly light.
15 This morning between 5 & 6AM Fritz drove our boys back from near BULLECOURT -- QUEANT line to just outside NOREUIL. Our 18 p'drs firing point blank on the advancing Fritzs. By 7AM we had them back to their original line & ourselves - our own. Over 2000 Fritzs were mown down & 300 odd captured. Les & I doss in make-shift shanty.
NOREUIL -- BOUGNATRE
Apr. 16 We take up supports tonight & our front line charge forward then we move up to their possies. Fritz shelled valley this morning very consistently, causing over 60 casualties in our unit.
17 The great stunt posponed. This gully getting well tickled up NO BON! What?
18 We are relieved by 27th Bn. 7th Bde taking over 5th & 6th Bdes line, while we have 4 days (approx.) out thence in again for the big forward stunt.
19 Arrived at BOUGNATRE last night.
21 Drill & stunt manouvres all day.
" Probably leave to England tomorrow.
22 Recd. leave pass. ("At Last") Tres Bon! Eh?
23 Spent last night in Albert (sitting around a fire)
24 Arrived "BOULOGNE" at 1AM this morning.
In billets - "Good-O". Glorious weather. Left Boulogne at 1.30PM & arrived at FOLKSETON at 2.45PM & thence on to VICTORIA STN. LONDON arriving there at about 5PM At "PEEL HOUSE"
25 ANZAC DAY.