The Ypres Salient - CWGC

Men of the 50th Australian Battery clean their 18-pdr guns after a heavy strafeThe protective barrage offered for the attacking New Zealand Division epitomised the general ineffectiveness of artillery support (with the exception of that on the northern extremity of the line - where the guns had the advantage of slightly better conditions) on the morning of 12 October: '..weak and erratic at the start, [the barrage] became even thinner and more ragged as the troops advanced up the slope, howitzer shells burying themselves in the sodden ground and merely splashing the pillboxes with fountains of mud.' (‘Military Operations. France and Belgium, 1917’ (Volume II), compiled by Brigadier-General Sir James E Edmonds, London, HMSO, 1948, p.341).

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