The Ypres Salient - CWGC

Despite difficult progress on the northern flank of the attack, the assaulting formations of Fifth Army (XVIII Corps and V Corps) advanced their line about 1,000 yards; Second Army's I Anzac Australians pausing by the roadside near Clapham Junction while bringing up materials for entanglementsCorps (1st and 2nd Australian Divisions) and X Corps (23rd Division) gained the required 1,500 yards 'step' up the Gheluvelt Plateau; the only acknowledged failure in this sector related to 41st Division's attack towards Tower Hamlets: a 'mass of concrete dug-outs and pillboxes’ on the highest point of the gentle slopes. Here the resolute enemy defenders were much assisted by the emphatic resistance displayed further south by the German garrison of the 'Quadrilateral': '...a strongly defended locality in the shape of a quadrilateral, four hundred yards long and a hundred deep, enclosing three ruined cottages, at the southern extremity of the spur, apparently little affected by the barrage.' ('Military Operations. France and Belgium, 1917' (Volume II), compiled by Brigadier-General Sir James E Edmonds, London, HMSO, 1948, p.261).

This feature also seriously impeded the progress of 39th Division’s 117th Brigade assaulting as a flank support to the right of the 41st Division. 19th Division (on the extreme right) successfully formed the southern flank with an advance of circa 600 yards on a 1,600 yard frontage.



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