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Guillemont was first attacked as part of the night offensive of 22/23 July (it was occupied by 19th Manchesters, later forced to retire). Further attacks took place on 30 July (when the 17th, 19th and 20th battalions of the King's Liverpool Regiment lost heavily in the advance, and the 2nd Royal Scots Fusiliers temporarily occupied the village), 8 August (55th West Lancashire Division), 12 August and 18 August (2nd Division).

The manner in which these attacks failed became dismally familiar; the infantry's lines of approach were cruelly exposed, as they led up a shallow rise, over a crest and down a slope completely devoid of cover.

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