Page 200 - The-History-of-the-Lancashire-Fusiliers-1914-1918-Volume-I

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which they found waiting for them at Ovillers Post, provided by
Lieutenant and Quartermaster
Bowyer, whose excellent work
throughout the Battle of the Somme earned
a Military Cross
in the New Year's Honours of 1917.
Immediate awards of honours included those of the Distinguished
Service Order to Lieutenant-Colonel
G. Bird who had remained
at duty and been an inspiring example to all although he had been
wounded the day before the attack; of the Military Cross to Second–
Lieutenant R
Beswick, to the Medical Officer, Captain W.
McFarlane, RA.M.C., and to the Chaplain, the Rev. M. S. Evers, who
made frequent journeys through the German shelling to Regina
Trench during the afternoon and night after the attack; of the
Distinguished Conduct Medal to Company Serjeant-Major T .
Higgins of "A" Company, who, although wounded, continued to lead
his men with great courage and determination; and of the Military
Medal to Corporal
Skelhorn, of Beswick's bombing party, and to
Bee, P. Garry and H.
Settle. The battalion, with the
rest of the 74th Brigade, was paraded a few days later to be con–
gratulated by General Sir H. de la P . Gough, commanding the
Fifth Army, and on the following day by the Commander-in–
Chief himself, General Sir Douglas Haig.
The battalion's losses had been
officers killed and 3 wounded,
and 13 other ranks killed, II4 wounded and 26 missing. Amongst
those killed were Captain R F. MacKinnon, M.C., and Regimental
Aylward, who had served many years in the
Regular battalions of the Regiment and had been with the nth
Battalion from its birth.
Another old member of the Regiment was killed on the last
occasion (and that a small one) in which the Regiment was involved
in the Battle of the Somme. On 3rd November the 10th Battalion
(Lieutenant-Colonel T. S. H. Wade) was ordered to attack a portion
of the German trenches near Gueudecourt and to establish certain
posts. "D" Company with two squads of the battalion bombing
platoon were to make a frontal attack, while a platoon of "C" was
to move by a flank, the whole supported by artillery and machine
guns. Mud prevented "D" from making any headway; it was
waist high and some men were stuck in it for a complete day and
then had to be dug or pulled out, often leaving their boots, socks and
trousers in it. The platoon of "C" tried to advance over the open
and were an easy target for the enemy's machine guns and shrapnel
barrage. The Germans retaliated by delivering an unsuccessful
attack on one of the battalion's bombing posts. But their shelling
had killed Regimental Serjeant-Major H. Goulding. The son of
a colouI-serjeant in the Regiment, he joined the Lancashire Fusiliers
in 1892 at the age of fourteen, served in the Sudan and South