Page 267 - The-History-of-the-Lancashire-Fusiliers-1914-1918-Volume-I

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THIRD BATTLE OF YPRE5--BATTLE OF CAMBRAI
239
the 5th Dorsetshire Regiment. Pemberton went out under heavy
fire to the advanced posts and helped to collect the men and to
withdraw them in safety. Few casualties were suffered as the unit
made its way to brigade reserve west of the Steenbeek.
The 1st and 19th Battalions also qualified for the battle honour
"Broodseinde," the former being in reserve at Elverdinghe, while
the latter was employed in prolonging the St. ] ean-Wieltje road in
preparation for operations to be carried out at a later date by the
66th l!ivision, to which the 3rd/Sth, 2nd/6th, 2nd/7th and 2nd/8th
Battalions belonged. These operations will be described shortly. It
may be mentioned that on 6th October, 339 men of high physical
category were transferred from the 19th Battalion to those Terri–
torial units and were replaced by men with technical (but little
military) experience from the 1st Reserve Battalion, Royal
Engineers.
THE NINTH OF OCTOBER
"POELCAPPELLE"
ht, 2nd, 3rd/5th, 2nd /6th, 2nd /7th, 2nd/8th and
19th
Battalions
The Battle of Poelcappelle on 9th October, 1917, might well be
celebrated in the Regiment as one of its major festivals. For the
first time in their history the two Regular Battalions fought shoulder
to shoulder; in all , six battalions of the Regiment fought this day,
while a seventh was working close behind the line , a higher number
than took part in any other single attack in the war; and a very
high degree of initiative and gallantry was displayed as is proved by
the fact that the deeds performed on this occasion won for the
Regiment a Victoria Cross, 2 D.S.Os. , 2 bars to the Military Cross,
13 Military Crosses, one bar to the Distinguished Conduct Medal,
15 Distinguished Conduct Medals, one bar to the Military Medal
and II3 Military Medals.
The Regular Battalions
After taking part in the second phase of the Third Battle of
Ypres on 16th August, the 1St Battalion had taken its turn in the
1ST
BN.
line near Langemarck for the rest of the month. Most of September
had to be devoted to training at Purbrook Camp, Haringhe, six
miles north-west of Poperinghe, with a period spent in work in the
forward area under the direction of a tunnelling company. On
21st September the battalion moved to Elverdinghe, where it found
that the 2nd Battalion had arrived the day before after a com- 2ND BN.
paratively peaceful summer spent near Arras. The consequence
inevitable in the British Army followed on the 25th, when a football
match was arranged between the two battalions, with the satisfactory
result of a draw at one goal each.
On 7th October, apparently as a final preparation for battle, it
is recorded in the War Diary of the 1st Battalion that all feet were
1ST
BN.
washed at Elverdinghe Baths. That night the battalion took over a