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                     The Second Battalion 1914 - 18

1915

7th January the 81st Brigade marched to Dickebusch to support the 80th Brigade. On the 10th they began to relieve the 80th Brigade in the front line. The Glosters relieved the Kings Shropshire Light Infantry near St. Eloi. The Battalion had 23 officers and 757 men. On the 12th they returned to Dickebusch, 12 men had been wounded and 5 were missing (to shell fire). On the 13th they marched to Kokerelle. 17th January 2nd Lieut. F.C. Badsell was wounded and on the 3rd February Lieut. L.A.W.B. Lackland and 2nd Lieut. A.J. Blake were wounded. On the 20th Lieut. J.B. Smalley was wounded. On the 20th March Lieut. H.M. Harrison was killed and 2nd Lieut. R.J. Croft was killed on the 21st. During the period of trench duty the Battalion lost 2 officers and 32 men dead and 4 officers and 131 men wounded.

23rd March the Regiment moved to Rosen Hill, near Reninghelst. In April the Glosters relieved the Argylls in the sector east of Ypres. 18th April the Germans fired mortar bombs on the Glosters trenches, 2nd Lieut. B.E. Brown and 1 man were killed, 8 men were wounded. The Germans shelled the lines until the 21st, another 35 men were killed or wounded.

On the 24th March the Battalion moved to Potijze. That night they moved to Sanctuary Wood and on the 26th returned to Potijze.

8th May the Germans attacked Frezenberg. The 2nd Glosters were heavily engaged. On the 9th a large bombardment hit their front line trenches. Lieut. E. D'O. Aplin was seriously wounded and only 3 men of his platoon survived; Aplin died of his wounds on the 13th May.) The Germans advanced on the British trenches. Major R. Conner led the support Company up to assist but he was wounded and captured. (he was repatriated later in the year but died 7th September 1915.) The Germans broke into the Glosters trenches. Two men of 'D' Company ran out to drag in a wounded Sergeant; Both men (Privates Maidmont and Gigg) were awarded the Russian Order of St. George (3rd Class). A counter-attack was organised, but failed to retake the positions. During the action Lieutenant-Colonel Tulloh was killed. Captain A.C. Vicary assumed command of the Battalion and ordered the men to hold a new line. On the 10th the Glosters were relieved by the 1st Royal Scots and marched back to reserve trenches a mile east of Ypres. The Battalion had lost 5 officers and 140 men. On the 11th May orders came to retake a little hill near Sanctuary Wood. 'B' Company fixed bayonets and charged straight at the hill, surprising the Germans. Under heavy fire they held the hill until the 12th, when Captain J. Fane decided to withdraw. He reported to Brig-General Nisbet "I can go on taking the damned hill as often as you want, But I cannot hold it." When the Germans advanced to the hill again, 'B' company advanced again and drove them off. During the withdrawl from the hill 2nd Lieut. C.B. Rayner was killed.

The Glosters were relieved back to bivouacs south of Poperinghe. By the end of May the Battalion was moved to Armentieres, about 550 strong. The area was quiet and trenches in good condition. 19th June Lieut-Colonel K.M. Davis took over the Battalion, which was now 23 officers and 921 men.

The Battalion was in Brigade Reserve during June and July. 22nd September they arrived in the Somme sector, at Morcourt. On the 4th October they relieved the Royal Irish Fusiliers at Fontaine les Cappy. On the 8th they were relieved by the Argylls and moved back to Chuignolles.

On the 24th the Glosters moved and were at Seux from the 27th October to the 14th November. Then they marched to Clary. Taking the train from Longeau they arrived at Marsailles on the 24th and by the 26th the Battalion was aboard ship heading for Salonika 2 days later. 12th December the ship arrived at Salonika Harbour and the Glosters marched to Lembet Camp. There they were employed making roads. On the 27th they moved to a camp on the Monastair road.