13 October 1917; Saturday

Up about 7.30. Decided to go to meet Ernie but he came to see me with a friend. Harvey joined us and we walked into Locre and back by La Clytte1. He told me that he had been recommended for a Military Medal2. Had good time together. Had tea in Locre.

  1. The map shows this journey, from Kemmel (A) to Locre (B) and back via La Clytte (C). 

  2. Although not recorded in the diary, Ernie had been awarded the Military Medal on 4th October for repairing communication wiring at night in No Man’s Land. The staff officer who saw Ernie doing it recommended him for the award because – perhaps with limited experience of front-line realities – he assumed it must be an exceptional act of bravery; an assumption about which Ernie remained indignant for the rest of his life. Courageous it clearly was (however modest Ernie may have been about it), but it was routine rather than exceptional. See further narrative about Ernie and the R.G.A. in the footnote on 12 May 1916, all posts tagged “Ernie” and the Family page. 

11 October 1917; Thursday

Up about 6 o’clock and carried down a case first thing with the new squad. Took them a long time. Started off with Captain McCombie to inspect the posts but he turned back at the top of the tunnel. Went to C post in the afternoon with orders for the men there to go down. We were relieved about 6 o’clock and walked down past the brasserie. Arrived about 8 o’clock and helped in the blanket store.

4 October 1917; Thursday

Up at about 7 o’clock. A patient first thing and the ground was heavy with rain. Not much to do all day. Talked a few minutes with Harvey of the prospects of the war and our prospects after the war.

Two/three Divisions gone over on our left at dawn.

3000 prisoners and all objectives taken.