Wednesday 18 September 1918 We Lost 2,731
The 22nd and 26th Division in Salonika attack ‘Pip Ridge’ and the Grand-Couronne. The first assault is carried out with the support from a Cretan Division of the Greek army. As the the British are advancing up the hills they are caught in a crossfire coming from the slopes and driven back with heavy losses. The 12th Cheshire Regiment leads the attack on ‘Pip Ridge’. From the bunkers on the hills machine guns open fire with a horrific effect on the allies but those that survive continue on and capture the first two Bulgarian trenches. But by this stage the attack has become a massacre and those that remain alive are going on to almost certain death.
- Lieutenant Colonel ‘the Honorable’ Arthur Reginald Clegg-Hill DSO (commanding 12th Cheshire Regiment) is killed in action when his battalion is annihilated by the Bulgars at Pip Ridge, Doiran, Macedonia at age 41. He is the son of Rowland Clegg-Hill the 3rd Viscount Hill. He served during the Boer War with the Cheshire Regiment, which regiment he rejoined during the Great War, commanding the 12th Battalion for two and a half years.
- Captain Charles Henry Vigors MC (Cheshire Regiment) is killed in action. His brother was killed in September 1916.
While this is happening the South Wales Borderers have reached ‘Grand Couronné’ which is the last line of defense. The bravery of the Welsh is extreme, they charge up the hill trying to get over the defenses of the ‘Grand Couronné’ only to be cut down. Of the entire battalion only one officer and eighteen men make it back to the camp
South east of Havrincourt during an enemy counter-attack and throughout an extremely intense enemy barrage Second Lieutenant Frank Edward Young (Hertfordshire Regiment) visits all posts warning the garrisons and encouraging the men. In the early stages of the attack he rescues two of his men who have been captured and bombs and silences an enemy machine gun. Although surrounded by the enemy Lieutenant Young fights his way back to the main barricade and drives out a party of the enemy who are assembling there. Throughout four hours of intense hand-to-hand fighting he displays great valor and devotion to duty setting an example to his company. He is last seen fighting hand to hand against a considerable number of the enemy. For his actions this day Second Lieutenant Young will awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross.
Second Lieutenant Ernest Bristow Farrar (Devonshire Regiment) composer, pianist and organist is killed in action at age 33. He was the music teacher of Gerald Finzi who wrote ‘Requiem de Camera’ is his memory while Frank Bridge dedicated his famous Piano Sonata to his memory. He is the son of the Reverend C D Farrar. Despite his short life, Farrar wrote a large body of music for orchestra, voices and organ. His works include The Blessed Damozel, the Celtic Suite and his song cycle, Vagabond Songs. However, apart from a few songs his works are now rarely performed. Farrar’s death affected the young Finzi deeply, and from the very beginning, most of his music was elegiac in tone.
Today’s losses include:
- Multiple battalion commanders
- The son of a Viscount
- The son of a Baronet
- Multiple families that will lose two and three sons in the Great War
- Multiple Victoria Cross winners
- A composer, pianist and organist
- Multiple sons of members of the clergy
- Multiple sons of Justices of the Peace
- A Military Chaplain
- A schoolmaster
- A Bradford City footballer
Today’s highlighted casualties include:
- Lieutenant Colonel Basil Frederick Bishop (commanding 9th South Lancashire Regiment) is killed at age 39.
- Lieutenant Colonel Alec Graham Scougal MC (commanding 17th Royal Scots) is killed at age 30. He is the son of Andew E Scougal (His Majesties Senior Chief Inspector of Training Colleges, Scotland) and his brother will be killed tomorrow.
- Lieutenant Colonel Reginald Thomas Collins DSO (commanding #17 Field Ambulance Royal Army Medical Corps) is killed in action at age 38.
- Major Harry Reginald Curtis (Welsh Fusiliers) is killed in action at age 31 in Greece. He has two brothers that are also killed in the Great War.
- Captain William Ernest Bott (Royal Fusiliers) is killed in action at age 25. His brother was killed in April 1917 and another brother will die on service in Basra in August 1920.
- Captain Cecil Hugh Jones (Welsh Fusiliers) is killed at age 31 on Salonika. He is the son of the Baronet ‘Sir’ Evan Davaies Jones JP.
- Captain Ernest Hesketh Harrison (East Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 26. He is the son of the Reverend R B Harrison.
- Captain Norman Alfred Hughes (Welsh Regiment) is killed at age 30. He is the son of the Bishop of Llandaff.
- Lieutenant Alfred Reginald Brownson (Welsh Regiment) is killed near the Grand Couronne, Salonika at age 31. He is the son of George Brownson JP.
- Captain Archibald Douglas Hewitt Clark-Kennedy (Scots Fusiliers) is killed at age 30. His brother was killed in April 1917 and they are sons of the Honorable Mrs. Clark-Kennedy.
- Lieutenant Edward Vernon Staley (Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 19. He is the son of the Reverend Vernon Staley Canon of Inverness and Rector of Ickford.
- Lieutenant Edward Russell Stapylton Bree (Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry) is killed at age 21. He is the son of the Reverend Edward Henry Bree Rector of Stow Marys.
- Lieutenant and Bombing Officer George Henry Keating (Cambridgeshire Regiment attached Middlesex Regiment) is killed in action at age 25. He is the son of the late Canon J F Keating DD.
- Lieutenant Mervyn Holmes Watkins (Royal Field Artillery) is killed in action in Salonika at age 25. He is one of seven brothers who serve in the Great War, three of whom are killed.
- Second Lieutenant Ernest Bristow Farrer (Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 33. He is the son of the Reverend C D Farrer.
- Second Lieutenant Philip Gillespie Bainbrigge (Lancashire Fusiliers) is killed at age 27. He is the son of Prebendary Philip Thomas Bainbrigge.
- Second Lieutenant Cecil Alexander Gordon Fitch (Royal Garrison Artillery) is killed at age 19. He is the only son of ‘Sir’ Cecil Fitch KCB.
- Chaplain the Reverend J Fitzgibbon MC (attached Royal Army Medical Corps) is killed in action.
- Second Lieutenant Ernest Bristowe Farrar (Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 33. He is the son the Reverend Charles Druce Farrar Vicar of Micklefield.
- Sergeant Arthur James Ayres DCM MM (East Kent Regiment) is killed at age 27. His brother was killed last October.
- Sergeant G E Radford MM (Royal Garrison Artillery) is killed in action at age 39. He is a schoolmaster.
- Lance Corporal Francis Adolphus Hamilton Browne (Royal Garrison Artillery) is killed at age 20. He is the son of Austin Hamilton Browne JP.
- Lance Corporal Charles Edgar Ford (Wiltshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. An older brother was killed last November and their older brother will die of war service next May.
- Private Arthur Werndly (Australian Infantry) is killed in action at age 34. His brother was killed the previous month.
- Private Ernest Barber (East Kent Regiment) is killed in action at age 18. His brother was killed in April 1917.
- Private George Willmott (Sherwood Foresters) is killed in action near Lechelle at age 22. His brother will die in December 1919 of an illness contracted on service during the Great War.
- Private Claude Joseph Patrick Nunney (Eastern Ontario Regiment) dies of wounds received in action at age 25. Two weeks earlier he performed acts that will win him the Victoria Cross.
- Private William Johnson (Shropshire Light Infantry) dies of wounds at age 24. His brother died of dysentery on service in October 1915.
- Private Archibald Carmichael (King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed at age 32. His brother was killed in October 1915.
- Private Sydney Robert Jary DCM (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. He was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for saving the life of a soldier on this day during which he received his fatal wound.
- Private George Draycott (Lincolnshire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 30. He played for the Bradford City Football Club.
- Sapper Robert S Miller (Royal Engineers) dies of wounds. His brother was killed in March 1917.
- Private Richard Mason (York and Lancashire Regiment) is killed. His brother died of illness in October 1917.
- Private William J Pink (Sussex Regiment) is killed at age 22. His brother died on service in January 1917.
- Private Edmund Harold Lowndes (Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at age 19. He is the son of the Reverend Edmund A T Lowndes.
- Private James Richard Bond (East Kent Regiment) is killed at age 35. His brother was killed in August 1916.
- Private Walter Whiteman (East Kent Regiment) is killed in action as the third brother to be killed in the war.
- Gunner James Haxton Foster Chambers (Australian Field Artillery) is killed at age 28. He is the son of the Reverend Charles James Chambers Vicar of Smithtown New South Wales.
- Private John William Caton (Army Service Corps) dies of pneumonia at age 48. His brother was killed last March.
- Private William Percy Hatch (Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry) is killed on Salonika. His brother was killed last April.
- Private Lewis Southwell (Royal West Kent Regiment) is killed. He is the last of three brothers who are killed in the war.