From G. K. Rose, The Story of the 2/4th Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
“On the evening of November 25, 1916, Robinson of C Company and myself, taking Hunt and Timms (my runner) and one signaller, left for the front line.”
“One night about this time a party of us, including Hunt and
‘Doctor’ Rockall, the medical corporal, who had accompanied me round the front posts, lost its way hopelessly in the dark. Shapes looming up in the distance, I enquired of Hunt as to his readiness for hostile encounter, whereupon the reassuring answer was given that ‘his revolver was loaded, but not cocked.’
“Hunt, who at this time, being my only officer not partially sick, has called for somewhat repeated reference, usually devoted the hours after mid-night to taking a patrol to locate a track shown on the map and called Stump Road, his object being to meet another patrol from a neighbouring unit. Success did not crown the work. Stump Road remained undiscovered and passed into the apocrypha of trench warfare.”
28th February 1917
“That everyone inside was not killed instantly was due, no doubt, both to the sloping character of the stairs, which made some bombs explode before they reached the bottom, and to the small size of the bombs themselves. A gas bomb finished the German side of the argument. Hunt’s useful knowledge of German commenced the answer. We ‘surrendered.’ I went upstairs at once and saw three Germans almost at touching distance. In place of a docile prisoner they received four revolver shots, after which I left as soon as possible under a shower of bombs and liquid fire. Shortly afterwards, but too late to follow me, Hunt also came forth and round the enemv had vanished Afterwards the Sergeant Major and Uzzell, sanitary lance-corporal, who on this occasion showed the genius of a fieId marshal, emerged and prevented the return of our late visitors.”
The story of this raid I should not have allowed to reach this length but for the fact that the affair created some stir at the time, and correspondence raged on the subject till long afterwards Hunt, who was with me during the bombardment and the
bombing of my H.Q., was not captured on emerging from the dug-out, but himself, some hour or more afterwards, while wandering among the blown-in trenches in an effort to follow me, entered a German listening post and became a prisoner. As a prisoner he was present at a German H.Q. when the details of an exactly similar raid upon a neighbouring division were being arranged ; which raid proved for the enemy an equal success.
The aftermath of this fighting proved a trying experience. The dug-out to which I returned to spend the remainder of the tour was a shambles. The stairs were drenched with blood. Of my
companions, Thompson, a signaller, Timms, Smith (Hunt’s servant, a fine lad) and Corporal Coles, one of the br.avest and most devoted N.CO.’s the Battalion ever had, were dead or died soon afterwards.”
UK, British Officer Prisoners of War, 1914-1918
Name: C B Hunt
Regiment: 4th Battalion. Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Lig
Date Missing: 28 Feb 1917
Repatriation Date: 18 Dec 1918
Record Number: 2903
Section: Western Theatre of Operations.