February 1917 War Diary - 10th RDF

1 Feb Beaucourt Front Line, Left subsection, Forceville The battalion was relieved during the night by the Nelson Battalion and after clearing the trenches reorganised on the Hamel-Bouzincourt road. at the north end of Avesuy Wood. The battalion then marched to Forceville via Bouzinville and Hedauville. And went into billets arriving 3.30am

2 Feb Forceville Day spent in rest.

3 Feb Forceville Day spent in rest.

4 Feb Forceville 11.30am Battalion marched out of billets at short notice and proceeded to Englebelmer, and went into billets.

5 Feb Englebelmer 7am the battalion marched out of billets and proceeded to the German 1st line in the Beaucourt sector. 6pm the battalion proceeded to the front line and took over the centre sub-sector from Hawke battalion. 8pm - 8.30pm a hostile barrage consisting of 5.9s, whizbangs, and shrapnel fell between Puisieux RD and Puisieux Trench. During the night enemy snipers were actice on Puisieux Trench. Defensive patrols and listening patrols were pushed out during the night and they reported everything quiet

6 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line 2.45pm about 50 5.9s and 25 shrapnels fell on Puisieux and River Trenches. Effective retaliation was obtained. Some of our 10 pounders, both shrapnel and HE, from the direction of Suvla Trench appeared to be falling flat. Enemy snipers were active during the night. But were silenced by our Lewis guns and a Stokes mortar. A large enemy party was seen at about R2 G47 and was fired on. 4 men were seen to fall hit. Working parties were seen and heard during the night on our left front. Liasion patrols went out during the night and got in touch with the battalions on our right and left. 2 prisoners were captured today.

7 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery was very active today, especially from 10.40 to pm. A large quantity of 4.2s and shrapnel were sent over at R7 b75 34. Our retaliation was poor and a great many shells dropped short between Puisieux and River Trenches. A number of them were duds. 5.30pm The Bosche sent up a sucession of green lights which were followed by considerable artillery activity. 4.30pm a German aeroplane came over our right sector and dropped a smoke trail from 4.45pm to 5pm. The line was bombardd with 5.9s and shrapnel. The usual partie3 were sent out during the night.

8 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery very active. Puisieux road was shelled practically all day. Puisieux and River Trenches were shelled from 3,30pm to 6.30pm with 5.9s and whizbangs. Our artillery was quiet and retalliation when called for was poor. Enemy snipers were very active today especially in front of our left company at about R2 b37, they were very difficult to locate. 2 Officers and 2 OR were killed by snipers and 2 or 3 wounded. 2 prisoners came into our lines today. The usual listening posts went out during the night.

9 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery was active all day. 7.15 - 7.45pm our positions were heavily shelled with HE and Whizzbangs. 10 - 11pm there was intense shelling to our right company's front. Our guns were fairly active. Some of our shrapnel fell short in Puisieux Trench. 11.30pm aeroplanes were heard going east, returning 2.30am. 2 large explosions were heard behind our lines at 12.30am. The usual patrols went out tonight.

The following officers returned today and joined the battalion

10 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery fairly active, especially about 8.45pm. Miraumont Alley and Puisieux Trance were heavily shelled with 5.9s and whizzbangs. Enemy were observed strolling about in front of our right company as if they wanted to surrender. The usual patrols and listening posts were out during the night.

11 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery activity was normal during the day. 6.20pm gas shells were sent over Puisieux Road and Beaucourt Road. A short shrapnel from our own artillery killed one man in our left company shortly after 9pm. The entrance to Battalion HQ was sniped all day from a NNE direction, possibly from a fixed rifle. A sniper post was located at R2 b2.9. The enemy sent up red lights at intervals which appeared to to be a signal for their artillery to open fire. The usual listening patrols went out during the night. An advanced post was established by us at .27 50 from an enemy post which he is strengthening.

12 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery quiet. 8.30pm battalion HQ was heavily shelled with 5.9s from direction of Miramont. A small party of enemy were seen at about R2 b47 and were fired one of our Lewis guns. Some were seen to fall. The uaual patrols and listening posts were out during the night. The following telegram was received from the C IN C "Congratulate 63rd Division warmly on the sucess of their recent operation at Grandcourt"

13 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery quieter than usual today except on Puisieux road where retaliation was called for, and obtained, three times. 6.30pm to 7.10pm an intense bombardment of our lines with 77 ?? took place. Our own artillery was more active than usual and was still inclined to fall short on our front line. Hostile sniping activity was less than usual. 4.30pm a German aeroplane came over from NE flying very low. It dropped 4 bombs on our right front. 7.30pm an enemy patrol came close up to our no9 post R2 a96 and threw some bombs. Our Lewis gun opened fire and some bombs were thrown. Soon afterwards two of the enemy came in and surrendered. It is believed that they belonged to the patrol. They wore steel helmets. The prisoners belonged to the 86th Hamburg Regiment. Weather very cold

14 Feb Beaucourt Sector front line Hostile artillery was very quiet today except for an intense barrage on Puisieux road from 6pm to 6.30pm. During the night the battalion was relieved by the 1st Royal Marines and proceeded in motor busses by companies from Hamel to Englebelmer arriving from 2am to 5am. Weather very cold

15 Feb Englebelmer Day spent in reorganisation. am working parties supplied.

16 Feb Englebelmer Day spent in rest and reorganisation. Working parties supplied.

17 Feb Englebelmer Working parties supplied. Casualties

18 Feb Englebelmer Day spent in rest and Church Parades. Working parties supplied. Casualty amendments

19 Feb Englebelmer Working parties supplied. Casualty amendments

20 Feb Englebelmer Day spent in rest. Working parties supplied.

21 Feb Englebelmer 11.45 The battalion moved out of billets and proceeded to the German 3rd line of the Beaucourt Sector and took over from Drake battalion. The relief was completed before dark. Working parties supplied. Casualties

22 Feb Beaucourt Sector German 3rd line Situation quiet Working parties supplied.

23 Feb Beaucourt Sector German 3rd line Situation quiet Working parties supplied.

24 Feb Beaucourt Sector German 3rd line Word has been received that Miramont has been evacuated by the enemy. 11.45 the battalion started to move up to Puiseiux Trench right subsection. One company was placed in Ancre Trench, one in Puisieux Trench, one in the sector road and one in the trench running from Miraumont Alley to R5 b75 15.

25 Feb Beaucourt Sector German 3rd line7.30am the battalion was ordered to advance and occupy Miramont - see appendices 4 and 5. Hostile artillery were active on Miramont all day after our entry. Casualties

26 Feb Miramont A strong patrol under 2nd Lt HIGGINS went out in the early morning and advanced as far as Gudgeon Trench. They found this trench strongly held by the enemy and returned with considerable difficulty having suffered 6 casualties. News was received later in the day that Gudgeon Trench was evacuated by the enemy. And a half company under 2nd Lt WILSON occupied it after dark, having started at 5.30pm. Hostile artillery was active all day on Miramont. The battalion was relieved during the night by the 2nd West Yorkshire Regiment. Casualties

27 Feb Theipval Wood The battalion came down from the line and proceeded to the huts in Theipval Wood, the last company arriving before 9am. The day spent in rest.

28 Feb Theipval Wood The day spent in rest. Working parties supplied. The following officers reported their arrival and were taken on the strength of the battalion.

10th Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers History by Month