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The Battle of Arras from the British Front: During and after the Capture of Vimy Ridge

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DRAWN FROM MATERIALS Rt ECHIVED FROM AN EYE-WITNESS.


– ,BOCHE FIRINGk LINE ATR D W O TH D FALENS CHURCH FLA ES I C Y ” ” ( E O T R D OT V I AFTER DAWN ON THE DAY OF THE ATTACK ON VIMY RIDGE: A VIEW FROM CARENCY OF THE BOMBARDMENT OF THE “PIMPLE” (BEYOND THE RIDGE AND NOT VISIBLE).


I t IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE TAKING OF VIMY RIDGE BY THE CANJADIANS: A VIEW FROM NOTRE I DAME DE LORETTE, SHOWING THE FIRES AND EXPLOSIONS CAUSED BY THE RETREATING GERMANS. – Ii -. . . . . ,- –,—-. .–.~ . “- ·


The scene in the early psorning of the great attack cn Vimy Ridge was grim and awe-inspiring. Tie great Ridge stood out white, for snow had recently fallen, against other parts of the landscape in shadow, and big, lowering snow-clouds were rolling up, though the sun was not yet obscured. As shown in the upper drawing, the British bombardment was intense along the Ridge, especially that end of it where is the hill nicknamed by our troops ” The Pimple.” This position gave the Canadians much trouble. In the:r official account of the first day’s fighting we read : ” By to o’clock at night … ‘ the Pimp’e,’ in the north, still remained to the enemy, but by then snow was falling heavily, and it was wisely decided to consolidate the hard-won gains and prepare for a counter-attack rather than to undertake a further assault that night. The Pimple would keep for the morrow.” Our lower drawing shows the scene from rising ground at Notre Dame de Lorette, which, like Vimy Ridge, overlooked the whole of the German first lines. Describing the German retreat neat Lens during


the first week of the Battle of Arras, a ” Times ” correspondent writes : ” Having broken and shattered the German front line both south and north of the Souchez Riverr when ferce fighting took place in the Bois-en-Hache, our men then pushed through Lidvin on the heels of the retreating enemy. . . .North of the river lies an extremely strong series of positions, including very formidable machine-gun defences in Riaumont Wood. All these were carried.. . Lens and Li6vin, with all the surrounding mining suburbs, known as ctis, are built of red brick. Among and above the red-brick rose everywhere the tall black chimneys, great towers, and scaffolding peculiar to the pit-heads of French mines, and huge slagheaps or crrssicrs. One famous landmark which yesterday’s attack made ours is the conspicuous Double Crassier north of Lidvin. In the centre of Lens, close by the church, a fire was burning .. . In Lens itself, and in the mining cites, exolosiors have been going on all the morning.”-[Drawinev Coprirhtkd in the United States and Canada.]



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