Tag Archives: Map

Diary entries which illustrate the locations of the events recorded using maps. See also Maps.

14 January 1918; Monday

Up about 7.30. Billy Truman, Murray and I went up to walking wounded post at Trescault1. Found Sergeant Powell there. Very busy all day and had a lot of men to look after. Ben Jenkins and Carmichael there too. Worked until late. Unsatisfactory job. Sent for more men.

  1. Trescault (B): next village up (from (A) Metz-en-Couture), 3km nearer to Cambrai; Michelin square K7. 

16 December 1917; Sunday

Paraded at 8.30 and marched back to Fins headquarters. Left there about 9.30 and arrived at Metz1 after about an hour’s walk. Got a rotten billet. A few men went straight up the line.

  1. Metz: presumably Metz-en-Couture (B), 4km up D17 road towards Cambrai from Fins (A); Michelin map K7. 

9 December 1917; Sunday

Called up at 7 in the morning and told to fall in at 8. I rode on a lorry again with the quartermaster’s staff. We left about 9 o’clock (the men marched off shortly after 8 o’clock) and arrived at Fins about 4 o’clock1. We had rather a miserable journey through the most desolate and blasted country. The men arrived about 7 o’clock after 10 hours marching and were very much done up2. They had had no dinner, the same as yesterday. Got into miserable cold billets, just canvas shelters. I was put on guard and did from midnight until 4 o’clock. Very cold in bed and my feet nearly freezing.

  1. Fins (B): 16km SE. of Bapaume, on the Péronne – Cambrai road; Michelin square K7, and about 30km from Courcelles-le-Comte (A). “Fins” inserted in longhand above “at about” by ALL 

  2. “Done up”: Exhausted. 

8 December 1917; Saturday

Got tea cocoa up at Salety and the men arrived about 3 in the morning. Stood about until nearly 7 o’clock. Left in the car and arrived at desolate place near a village called Millemont1. Left there about 10 o’clock on a lorry and arrived at Courcelles2 about midday. The men left at 12 and arrived about 5 o’clock, pretty well done up. A mess up at night for the food. Passed over some of the ground retaken in the retreat from Bapaume. Rather enjoyed the ride. Slept well.

  1. Millemont: in shorthand, so transcription not certain; not identifiable on the map. 

  2. Courcelles: Courcelles-le-Comte (B, 8km NNW. of Bapaume, map square I7) is on a fairly direct route from Saulty (A, if this is correct) to Fins, but Courcelles-au-Bois (C, 19km W. of Bapaume, map square H7) also seems possible. 

7 December 1917; Friday

Up about 7 o’clock. Paraded at the dispensary sick. News not very good. Told off to ride in the ambulance cars. Went down to a car after dinner and started off shortly after 2 o’clock. Arrived at Steenbecque1 station before 3 o’clock. Got up tea for the men, who arrived about 5 o’clock and then as the blanket lorry had broken down our ambulance had to make four journeys for our blankets. We packed up and left again at about 9.10. After a quiet journey arrived at Salety2 about midnight.

3 M T men, Corporal Jones, Sergeant Strauss† and myself on the car.

  1. Steenbecque (B): 7km SSW. of Hazebrouck (A); Michelin square G3. 

  2. Salety: this is in legible longhand, but not identifiable under this name on the Michelin map; possibly Saulty (C) (off the N25 midway between Doullens and Arras, Michelin square H6), but this leaves the next day’s journey unclear - 

10 November 1917; Saturday

Up shortly after 6 o’clock. Raining all morning. Got ready for parade at 9.15. Marched to Bailleul station. Had train to near Hazebr.<ouck> and marched to Wallon Cappell1. Our billets just outside the village.

  1. Wallon-Cappell (C): 5km W. of Hazebrouck, on D642 to St Omer; Michelin square G3. Map shows entire journey from Bailleul (A) via Hazebrouck (B). 

1 November 1917; Thursday

Up at midnight. Breakfast 12.15. Paraded for rations 1.15. Fritz1 plane over and delayed for an hour. Marched to train 3 o’clock. Got into compartment with only one door. 12 hours on the journey. Arrived at Bailleul about 3 in the afternoon. Had dinner and got a lorry to Locre. Walked from there to Kemmel2 and arrived just after 4 o’clock. Commenced to write letter home, fine day, looked through letters received. Harvey and Holman up the line.

Arrived at Ambulance after leave.

  1. Fritz: a name given to German troops by the British and others in the First and Second World Wars. 

  2. The map shows the entire journey, from Saint-Martin (A) to Kemmel (D), via Bailleul (B) and Locre (C). 

31 October 1917; Wednesday

Up about 7 o’clock. Breakfast and then paraded. Dismissed until about 1 o’clock. Wrote a letter home and one to Everyman1. Got on the boat shortly after 1 o’clock. Very good crossing and I enjoyed it. Big escort both in the air and sea. Marched up to Saint Martin’s camp2 in time for tea. Detailed off. Spent part of the night in the Y M and sent off a field card. Reveille at midnight.

  1. More on this letter to Everyman in a later entry. See also Everyman and Arthur Linfoot’s Library

  2. “Saint Martin’s camp”: one of several army camps in and around Boulogne. The map shows this part of ALL’s journey, from Folkestone (A) to Saint-Martin (B). 

30 October 1917; Tuesday

Arrived at London at about 6 o’clock after a fairly good journey. I managed to get a bit sleep. A lot of sailors in the train and they were a jolly lot. Arrived at Folkestone – after crossing London – about 9 o’clock1. A strong wind and sea so we were put into billets on the quay. Wrote letter home and allowed in the town in the afternoon. Made a few purchases, sent off some postcards and had a nice little tea. Met Ogilvie and the R F C men and went out again at night. Glorious sunset and bonny night. Slept pretty well. Had long talk with signal engineer. He has been recalled after only 36 hours’ leave.

  1. The map shows this stage of ALL’s journey back to France from London (A) to Folkestone (B). 

29 October 1917; Monday

Up about 9 o’clock. Went up to see Mr Eaves1. Wrote to Harvey’s brother and wrote up diary.

[Diary reverts to pencil at this point – obviously written up after ALL’s return to France.]

Sister Annie2 called at night and we had a long argument on men – whether they are as good as parsons think they are or not. She stayed until 7 o’clock. I had supper and then we all went up to the station. I left by the 9.15. †Annie Freeman† at the station to see Teddie Tudor† off but he wasn’t going. †Dee Frere† and Hilda3 there. Called at Granny in the afternoon just after tea. Jack at the station too and Joe.

Left Sunderland 9.15 for Newcastle. Arrived Newcastle about 10 and left again after an hour4. Got5 seat in the train.

  1. Edward Eaves was a minister at the South Durham Street United Methodist Free Church. According to the diary, ALL had written to Mr Eaves twice, on 28 December 1916 and 28 May 1917, the latter shortly after Mr Mullens, another minister at the church, had died, presumably to offer condolences. Mr Eaves had officiated at Mr Mullens’ funeral. 

  2. “Sister Annie” is also named as a mourner at the funeral of Mr Mullens on 23 May 1917. See also note on 28 December 1916

  3. It is unclear which Hilda this may have been. 

  4. The map shows the first part of ALL’s journey back to France, from Sunderland (A) to London (C) on an overnight train, via Newcastle (B). 

  5. There is an indeterminate mark in the shorthand between “Got” and “seat”; it could be “no”, but this seems inconsistent with “fairly good journey”, in the 30 October entry.