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Thursday, 28 June 2012

Diary Entry - 28th June, 1917

Walford: At four p.m. as the Oppy business was on, Hoyland and I rode up to the guns to take part. As we went over the ridge in the trench, on looking over the parapet to locate some crumping going on, we were more than displeased to see it was in the vicinity of our destination. We waited till it stopped, then walked on. As soon as we got into the sunken road, we saw that the majority of the rounds fell in the road and about the Mess dug outs. My luck seemed to be out as, whenever I have been near this position, the shells have greeted me. Both the men's cook house and our own had been knocked out but, by a miracle, a barrel of beer between the two places was untouched. Beyond this, little damage had been done. The shelling had been brought on us by two 6-inch howitzers, which had come into the sunken road a few yards beyond the Mess. Their flash is enough to give any show away. The barrage commenced at nine ten and strangely it met with little or no opposition from the Bosche and we never had a round near us for the whole 40' firing; very different to our previous battles, when we were shot at the whole time. The business was a success and our line pushed well into Oppy Wood. The line straightened and the Hun lost 200 prisoners. That night we rode down. It was very heavy going as two very heavy showers came on during the attack. During the firing No. 1 gun pit had a little excitement as it caught fire, but the detachment soon had it under control. After the shooting, the Hun fired on the 6' howitzer, without success.

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