1917, APRIL 4th – FRONT-LINE EAST OF SOYECOURT
Snowing all day. The front posts were heavily shelled during the morning; 1 killed, 2 wounded.
From G. K. Rose, The Story of the 2/4th Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
In the early morning of April 4 the 59th Division, which was operating on the Battalion’s left, attacked Le Vergier. Fighting continued till noon, but the village was not taken. The 59th lost heavily. As they formed up for their advance–which was for some 1,000 yards across the open and exposed to view–behind the line the Battalion was holding, considerable enemy fire was brought down upon us and I lost Sergeant Watkins, wounded in the arm, and several other casualties. It snowed nearly all day. In the shallow trenches, which were ill-sited both for drainage and concealment from the enemy, life was miserable. On the next night a battalion of Sherwood Foresters relieved D Company, which returned to its wood, but B and C Companies remained holding the line. John Stockton, who now commanded B, was ill, but refused to leave the trenches and carried on in a most determined manner under shocking weather conditions. A new officer, Allden, in my company also proved his worth about this time. Events of some sort were of hourly occurrence.
The 2/5th Gloucesters held the line on the Battalion’s right, near the Omignon river. One night, after a heavy bombardment with 4.2s, the Germans rushed one of their posts. It had recently been evacuated, and the enemy spent his trouble in vain.
KILLED IN ACTION APRIL 4th 1917
201985 Private George Loveridge (Likely to have been D Company)
DIED OF WOUNDS APRIL 4th 1917
201448 Private Creswick Franklin