Page 92 - The-History-of-the-Lancashire-Fusiliers-1914-1918-Volume-I

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GALLIPOLI-SUVLA-EGYPT AND SI:-l'AI
75
(Lieutenant-Colonel
C.
T. Alexander) and the 1st/6th (Major
R.
L.
Lees, V.D., in temporary command) Battalions in that order on its
left. The brigade's two objectives were the Turkish front-line
system, called "F 12" .and "G 12," and the Turkish main support
line, called "F 13" and "G 13"; both contained intricate tangles of
trenches.
At 8.10 a.m. on 7th August intense artillery and machine-gun
ISTf5TH
fire was opened on the Turks. At 9.40 a .m. the attack went in. In
BN.
the 1st/5th Battalion, the operation was carried out by two parties,
the 1st Assaulting Force, composed of "C" (Lieutenant W. C. Yapp)
and "D" (Captain W. Horridge) Companies with a total of 120 men,
and the 2nd Assaulting Force, composed of "A" (Captain A. M.
Paton) and "B" (Captain S. H . Milnes) Companies with 130 men ;
there were also two bombing parties on the right under Second–
Lieutenant A. P. Hudson and one on the left under Corporal
Leach. "C" and "D" advanced at a steady double and occupied part
of "F 12," a dummy trench affording practically no cover ; they
got down in it, however, and tried to give covering fire for the advance
of the 2nd Assaulting Force. These two companies, following ten
minutes later, reached "F 12" at the cost of heavy casualties. The
survivors were gallantly led forward by Milnes, but could make
little headway in face of the Turkish fire . All the officers were hit
and the remnants could only fall back to "F 12" and try to con–
solidate there. The result was great congestion in the shallow trench
which it was almost impossible to deepen owing to the hardness of
the ground and the persistence and accuracy of the Turkish musketry.
Horridge clung tenaciously to a piece of high ground to the east of a
small nullah between the Vineyard and Achi Baba Nullah; but his
party was exposed to oblique fire and its losses were heavy.
In the meantime, the 1st/8th had attacked in three lines but had
ISTf 8TH
failed to get beyond the Turkish front line; while the 1st/7th,
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advancing at the same time, made good the great er part of the
lSTf 7 TH
Vineyard. Some parties, under Major W. ]. Law, reached the
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second objective, but found themselves exposed to enfilade fire and
superior numbers. On the left of the brigade front the 1st/6th took
lSTf6TH
both their objectives with great dash. At about midday the Turks
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counter-attacked and succeeded in driving the Lancashire Fusiliers
out of most of their gains. All four battalions made gallant efforts
to recover their losses and were partly successful, particularly in the
Vineyard. At 2 p.m. the 1st/5th received a further counter-attack
but drove it off with the help of artillery.
At 4 p.m. the Turks came on again. The 1st/5th were driven out
of their positions. A party led by Second-Lieutenant F. Whittam
(promoted from serjeant two days before) and Company Serjeant–
Major ]. H. Yates at once organized a bombing party, with which
they retook about eighty yards of the lost trench; but unfortunately
a barricade intended to consolidate their success was put up in the
wrong place and their efforts were wasted, Whittam and Yates being
killed. Major G. B. G. Wood organized another party and succeeded