Page 223 - The-History-of-the-Lancashire-Fusiliers-1914-1918-Volume-I

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191
6-
1917
195
Fanner who, regardless of himself, walked up and down encouraging
the men and supervising the work not only on his own front but also
in front of the village of Fampoux as far as the river, a continuous
trench was soon dug.
It
seemed likely that it would be needed, for
the enemy were seen to be massing and apparently advancing in
artillery formation. In the end no counter-attack developed. The
booty gained during this stage amounted to about lOO prisoners and
l3 guns. The battalion's casualties were 2 officers and 52 other
ranks wounded,
8
other ranks killed or died of wounds and
I
man
missing. The wounded had reason to be deeply grateful to the
battalion's medical officer, Captain C.
R. R.
Huxtable, who showed
the utmost bravery in attending to and evacuating them. At one
stage seven of his stretcher-bearers were buried by the explosion
of a shell: he at once organized a party and dug them out, though
shells continued to fall all round.
Snow fell heavily during the night ; and during the morning of
loth April the enemy was active in sniping and shelling. In the
afternoon cavalry moved up with a view to an attack on the
Plouvain-Gavrelle road and a hill lying athwart it and known as
"Greenland Hill," in which the battalion was to be in support. The
project was, however, abandoned. A further 73 casualties were
:luffered during the day.
The next day, nth, the battalion took a minor part in an attack
on Roeux and the station north of it, with Greenland Hill as the
final objective. "B" and "C" Companies were in support to the lst
King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, the remainder being in
divisional reserve. The attack was launched at noon. At 1.20 p.m.
cavalry tried to break through, but were held up by machine-gun
fire. The infantry attack was held up for the same reason at
2 p.m.
~nd
"D" Company was sent up to come under the
command of the King's Own. Even so, little progress was made, and
by nightfall "B,"
"c"
and "D" Companies were a short distance
only in front of the starting line. Captain G. G. Bowen was con–
spicuous for his gallant leadership during this difficult stage in the
action, as he had been throughout. During the night the troops were
reorganized, "A" Cbmpany being moved up to continue the line
held by other companies. The battalion's casualties during the day
totalled 19 all ranks.
Another attack, this time by the 9th Division passing through,
was to have taken place on l2th April; but, although the
preliminary bombardment was put down, nothing further happened
and the battalion was relieved during the night of 12th/13th April,
going first to the "Brown Line" and, later on 13th, to some trenches
about 2,000 yards north-east of Arras. The decorations awarded
to the battalion for the battle included :-
Bar to Distinguished
Se"vic~
Order
Lieutenant-Colonel C.
J.
Griffin, D.S.O.