March 1918

Achiet-le-Grand during WW1




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1/6th BN Manchester regiment in the 42nd division defended Achiet against the German attack

11th BN leicestershire(pioneers)regiment in the 6th division

21/3/1918 - 12.10am Received orders to 'Stand to' in Vaulx-Morchies line. Companies in position by 5am. The enemy attacked heavily after intense bombardment (which lasted for about 5 hours) at 8am and established themselves in position in front of the wire at Vaulx-Morchies line by the evening. 10pm - Wire, rations, water and ammunition were sent up to companies original billets. 5.30pm - Received message from Sgt Barratt ( D Coy) that all officers of the Company had become casualties and he was in command - reinforcements sent to D Company.

22/3/1918 - 9.30am Transport moved back, withdraw to Army line. 4pm Transport moved to Pioneer Camp - Logeast Woods. What remained of companies to new line. 30 o/r killed, 106 wounded, 81 missing. 4 officers killed, 7 wounded, 4 missing.

23/3/1918 - Fremicourt. Move to Achiet Le Grand. 2.30am battalion move off and march via Bapaume, Achiet Le Grand to Pioneer Camp, Logeast Wood. Billeted. 9am Enemy broken through near Mory. Battalion ordered to occupy outpost positions on the eastern edge of Logeast Wood. 11am Dug in. 6pm ordered to withdraw to Pioneer Camp.

24/3/1918 - Stood to in outpost positions in front of Logeast Wood. 11.15am March to Puisieux-Au-Mont, entrained for Doullens.

The 10th tank BN came into action at Achiet le grand with the 42nd division. the Germans had broken through close to Bapaume and the tanks had to counter attack to delay the enemy advance

      Tank Museum Bovington "diary and history of the 10th , 3rd BN diary (1918) are available "

here is a quick summary of the 10th Tank BN diary

22.03.1918 to 23.03.1918:

withdraw from Haplincourt wood toSapignies 35 tanks,3 broke down arrive at Sapignies 6am and were camouflaged , BN under orders of 41st division which was holding the front facing Mory , camouflage zone heavily shelled no damage or casualties , personnel exhausted but good spirits.


2 coys ordered to withdraw  west of Achiet-le-Grand and would come under order of 25th division , 3 coys ordered to assist infantry retirement onto Behagnie -Sapignie line , 6pm on the evening of 24th BN HQ move to Achiet-le-petit , at that time Bucquoy heavily shelled and passing through Achiet-le-grand gas was encountered , respirators having to be worn , the village being shelled with HE and gas , the road was almost impassable with artillery and transport moving West



South west Achiet-le-Grand the railway cutting

part of the tanks south west logeast wood , the others south Achiet (road and railway crossing) , logeast wood heavily shelled two tanks received direct hits + one on fire , BN HQ moved from Achiet-le-Petit to Mailly Maillet , received order to counter attack section 2and 3(4 tanks) on the north of Achiet the others south , tanks north inflicted heavy casualties on Germans , tanks section 3 received direct hits , section 2 both back to logeast wood. Tanks south did good job , one destroyed ,enemy advancing from direction of Grevillers , tanks withdrew behind Achiet-le-Petit , general retirement , logeast wood evacuated at 8.30pm