5th February 1916
We were again ordered – to make an attempt to take the crater, and again too late to go and have a look at it in daylight. The thing was a fiasco, the Germans were ready for us this time and the grenadiers could make no headway. Our casualties included the loss of a Lieutenant, 5 men killed, and 10 men wounded. .
Today the Battalion marches back to FOUQUEREUIL our old billets of Dec 25th.
6th February 1916
Yesterday’s fiasco was the last straw – and we are now under new leadership. We hope for many reforms.
Yesterday I was left behind to hand over billets and come on later. An hour after the battalion had left and the new battalion installed, a German aeroplane came over and saw the movement of troops. Within five minutes they started shelling the village, the first shell dropped within twenty yards of me, and it was a 5.9 inch howitzer, a “crump”. They threw 7 into the village before they thought we had had time to get under cover. Three men of D Company which had been left behind were slightly wounded.