Published By Ben Hillidge
Ypres Salient. 1 Bn East Lancashire Regiment. 3 September 1916.
At the end of August the 1 Bn East Lancashire Regiment was in the front line at Ypres – between Observatory Ridge and the Menin Road. The weather was not good with rain, wind and cold. Due to the rain the trenches were in a bad state with parapets collapsing, mud and flooding. Enemy snipers too had been active and there had been a number of ‘sniping’ casualties. There was also the occasional shelling, especially near to Maple Wood and surrounding area just to the rear of the East Lancs. position. Machine guns too were active traversing the trenches. On the night of 1 September 1916 they were relieved and went back to Ypres – some men billeted in the town Ramparts, others in barracks in the town and the rest in dugouts at Zillebecke Lake. They spent the next few days on working parties, all available men were out in the trenches at night getting back to billets at about 3.00 to 4.00 am. There were frequent gas alarms during the night hours with the men having to stand to as well as strafing by machine guns and sniping. The weather remained bad with pouring rain and driving wind, much effort was put into clearing mud and pumping out flooded trenches. The work continued until the 5 September when the battalion returned for a tour in the front line. The War Diary does not list casualties for this period. The battalion stayed in the Ypres area until 9 September after which they moved south to the Somme Offensive.
References and Sources WAR DAIRY 1 Bn East Lancs.
B&O 1916. Ypres. 1 Bn East Lancashire Regiment. 3 September 1916.