Battle of Messines Ridge

June 7th 1917 was a significant day for Harry.

For the last 18 days and nights there has been continuous heavy bombardment of the German Lines.

At 0250 the bombardment stopped and Harry and his colleagues were ordered to lie down.

A 0310 the largest man-made explosion to date blew apart the German front lines at Messines Ridge. 450 tonnes of high explosive, in 19 mines, was detonated. The explosion was heard in London and Dublin.

"Gentlemen, we may not make history tomorrow, but we shall certainly change the geography."

Remark by General Plumer to his staff the evening before the attack

An account of the battle can be found on the website, on Wikipedia or on many other sources.

We need to wait for any news of Harry, to determine his fate.


latoga said...

This event came into much clearer focus tonight as I was watching a show on the Discover Channel called "Digging Up the Trenches" (UK History Channel) This show talked about the trench war fare of WWI and specifically talked about the details behind this explosion. For wider understanding of this event and trench war fare in general, I suggest watching this show

Anonymous said...

My grandfather served in WWI. He is of Welsh descendant but from the USA. He lost his hearing in the trenches. We have been told that a bug lodged in his ear and ate is inner ear. Because of this site I am compelled to research more on my own grandfather’s life.

Neil Davies said...

Really glad I found this post.

Great blog - I'm currently writing a story based on my Great Grandad's diary. I was inspired to do it after he made an entry in his diary the day before the explosion.

He said 'Transferred to 256 Brigade. Something big is going to happen.'

Amazing to think that a relative of mine was there!

I've tried to do so much research but can find so little of him even at National Archives...intriguing!!

Thanks again for the post and your brilliant blog!