Friday 18 December 1914 – We Lost 373
Indian troops begin an attack on the Germans that will last five days around Givenchy (La Bassee) in an attempt to relieve pressure on the French at Arras preventing German reinforcements being committed to Arras. During the attack a group of Highlanders adjacent to the Indian Corps are unable to fire, because most of their rifles have become clogged with mud and are they are captured by the Germans. A battalion of the Scots Guards attacks the German trenches, half the battalion being killed or wounded.
An attack by 22nd Brigade (Queen’s West Surrey Regiment and Royal Warwickshire Regiments) on the Well Farm position at La Boutillerie fails with heavy casualties while a further attempt by 20th Brigade (Scots Guards and Border Regiment) later in the day also fails.
Captain Claude Alexander Lafone (Devonshire Regiment) will be awarded the DSO for conspicuous gallantry today near Neuve Chapelle in capturing a trench from the enemy. Captain Lafone will be killed on 14th March 1915 at age 38. Corporal Frank Edward Mervyn Roe (Rifle Brigade) voluntarily reconnoiters the enemy’s trenches and remains out for a period of three hours in a position of danger’. For his actions he will be awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal. Captain Roe will be killed in action on 7th June 1916.
The light cruiser Doris arrives off the port of Alexandretta, which is the hinge linking Asia Minor with Turkey’s great possessions in the Arab lands to the south. A landing party from the Doris cut the railway line from Anatolia and derails a train.
The conviction of Adolf Ahlers, late German consul at Sunderland, is quashed.
Today’s casualties include:
- The godson of Her Majesty Queen Alexandra – The Queen Mother
- Son of the 1st Baron Hardinge
- Grandson of the 9th Earl of Westmeath
- Grandson of the 4th Earl of Dartmouth
- Two battalion commanders
- Two families that will lose another son in the war including a family that lost a son yesterday
- A son of a family that will lose two others sons
- Son of a Member of Parliament
- Multiple sons of members of the clergy
- A man whose son will be killed in the Second World War
- A son-in-law of a Writer to the Signet
- A son of a Justice of the Peace
Today’s highlighted casualty is
Lieutenant the ‘Honorable’ Edward Charles Hardinge DSO (Hussars) dies of blood poisoning at home from wounds received on 27th August at age 22. He is the son of the 1st Baron Hardinge of Penshurst KG. He is also the godson of Her Majesty Queen Alexandra the Queen Mother.
- Lieutenant Colonel Richard Henry Watkin Brewis (former Assistant Adjutant General commanding 2nd Royal Warwickshire Regiment) is killed in an attack at La Boutillerie at age 41. He is the son of S R Brewis JP and a veteran of the Sudan Campaign.
- Lieutenant Colonel Ernest Chamier Broughton (commanding 3rd York and Lancaster Regiment) dies at home following an operation at age 56.
- Captain Hubert Charlton Rome (Punjabis) dies of wounds at age 31. He is the son of Thomas Rome JP and the son-in-law of W S Dykes Writer to the Signet.
- Captain Ronald George Legge(Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 36. He is the son of ‘the Honorable’ Charles G Legge and a grandson of the 4th Earl of Dartmouth. He served in the South African War. His son will be killed in action in September 1944 in Italy.
- Lieutenant Bernard Henry Gilbert Shaw(West Yorkshire Regiment) is killed at age 21. He is the son of the Right Reverend Canon Edward Domett Shaw of Christ Church, Oxford and the Bishop of Buckingham. His two brothers will be killed in the next two years.
- Second Lieutenant Geoffrey Vincent Pearce (Warwickshire Regiment) is killed at age 25. He is the son of ‘Sir’ William Pearce Kt MP.
- Second Lieutenant Richard Francis Robert Nugent(Scots Guards) is killed at age 30. He is the son of the ‘Honorable’ Richard Anthony Nugent and grandson of the 9th Earl of Westmeath and brother of the 10th Earl who will have a son die next year.
- Lance Sergeant William George Goff(Rifle Brigade) is killed in action one day after burying his brother who was killed while serving in the same Regiment.
- Lance Corporal George William Dominey (Scots Guards) is killed in action. He is the son of the Reverend George William Dominey Rector of St Vincent’s Edinburgh.
- Private John Wooldridge (Scots Guards) is killed at age 34. His brother will die on service in May 1919.
- Private William Ernest Braund (Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed next May.
- Private Thomas McAllister (Border Regiment) is killed at age 18. His brother James will also lose his life in the war.
- Private Walter Rowe (Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 26. His brother John will also lose his life in the war.
photo from wikipedia.org