The First World War
War Diary of The Royal Canadian Regiment

Transcription by Captain Michael O'Leary, The RCR.

JULY 1917

1-7-17. - QUARRIES LINE.

Fine and warm. Preparations made complete for moving up to the line. During the morning, Companies carried on with Specialist work. 2 Officers and 50 other ranks on working party.

9 other ranks evacuated to C.C.S.
3 other ranks struck off strength on being sent to Base for disposal by Medical board.

(Appendix No. 1.)

2-7-17. - QUARRIES LINE.

Fine and warm. Companies rested during the day. We are relieving the 58TH Canadian Battalion. There was a Company Commanders conference in the afternoon and it was decided that it would be left to the discretion of the Company Commanders as regards cooking up the line. Companies moved off about 9.40 p.m. and relieved the 58TH Battalion. Relief complete at 11.50 p.m. We relieved their two right Companies by our "A" and "B" Companies. "C" and "D" Companies were on the left of the LENS-ARRAS ROAD. "C" on the right and "D" on the left. "D" Company was to the left of Brigade Headquarters and its frontage was about 400 yards.

3-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. The disposition of "A" and "B" Companies was changed. "A" Company was on the right of the railway embankment and was moved into BLIGHTY and CENTRE TRENCHES. "B" Company remained in SCOTIA Trench. 7 Officers and 350 other ranks on working parties at night.

3 other ranks joined as reinforcements from C.B.D.

4-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. Nothing of unusual interest during the day. The Enemy was shelling fairly heavily during the day and night, and in the surrounding area put 570 shells of all calibres. The Culvert as usual was shelled heavily.

1 other rank wounded in action (accidental).
5 other ranks evacuated to C.C.S.

5-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. Nothing of importance during the day. 7 Officers and 450 other ranks on working parties during the day and night.

Lieut. E.T. WAUGH, invalided to England.
1 other rank wounded in actions (S.W. leg).
2 other ranks joined as reinforcements from C.C.S.
6 other ranks joined from C.B.D.

6-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. Word was received that our dispositions were to be changed again, and that this would necessitate "D', "B" and "A" companies moving. 7 Officers and 450 other ranks on working parties during the day and night.

2 other ranks wounded in action.
1 other rank evacuated C.C.S.
17 other ranks struck off effective strength on being attached to the 7TH Canadian Trench Mortar Battery.

7-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. The change in disposition was made. When finished, "D" Company occupied a frontage from Brigade Headquarters to the railway near the SOUCHEZ River. "C" Company remained the same. "A" Company was astride the LENS -ARRAS Road and extended as far right in HALIFAX Trench as BADDECK C.T. "B" Company from that point to the BOIS de CHAUDIERE. Battalion Headquarters remained in the same place.

3 other ranks joined as reinforcements.
3 other ranks wounded in action.
7 other ranks evacuated to C.C.S.
14 other ranks invalided to England.

8-7-17. - AVION.

Dull in the morning but cleared up later in the day. Wind N.W. mild. The Medical Officer moved his Dressing Station to the junction of the LENS-ARRAS Road and RED Trench. 7 Officers and 450 other ranks on working parties during the day and night.

1 other rank killed in action (body recovered).
1 other rank wounded in action, S.W. back.
Capt. W.J. HOME returned from PARIS leave.

(Appendix No. 2.)

9-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. Battalions of the C.M.R's relieved the P.P.C.L.I. and the 49TH Battalion. 6 Officers and 450 other ranks on working parties during night and day. We are to be relieved tomorrow night by the 5TH C.M.R. and we are to proceed to the SOUCHEZ VALLEY. Our advance parties went out tonight and are to return tomorrow to guide out their respective Companies.

Lieut. G.L.P. GRANT-SUTTIE granted 10 days leave to England.
Lieut. R.N. GILMOUR invalided to England.
2 other ranks invalided to England.
1 other rank struck off strength on attachment to Trench Mortar Battery.
2 other ranks joined from C.C.S.

10-7-17. - AVION.

Fine and warm. Forty other ranks on working parties during the day. The relief was an excellent one and was complete at 11.50 p.m. The Companies moved back to the SOUCHEZ VALLEY Area. A hot meal was waiting for the men there. We are to move to the CHATEAU de la HAIE area tomorrow.

Lieut. L.E. LONGLEY, wounded in action.
Lieut. M.F. GREGG, awarded the MILITARY CROSS.
2 other ranks killed in action.
3 other ranks wounded in action.

(Appendix No. 3.)

11-7-17 - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Fine and warm. At 2.30 p.m. we moved off and were to pass HOSPITAL CORNER at 3.20 p.m. the re the band and Drums met the Regiment and played it to the CHATUEAU de le HAIE Area. The Camp was left in a filthy condition and a considerable amount of work was required to clean it up.

4 other ranks reported as reinforcements from the C.B.D.
1 other rank killed in action.
1 other ranks wounded in action.

12-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE.

Fine and warm. Companies carried on with baths, pay and cleaning up. The Headquarters details paraded for squad drill. At night the Regiment paraded to the Y.M.C.A. tent where the P.P.C.L.I. Comcert Company gave another show. It was excellent indeed and the Company was ably assisted by our Band.

(Appendix No. 4.)

13-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE.

Fine and warm. "C" and "D" Companies were on the ranges from 8.00 a.m. to 12.00 noon. At 3.00 p.m. there was a Brigade Parade for a farewell address by Major-General MACDONNELL. He came and said goodbye and "Thanked his comrades of the 7TH Brigade for what they have done under his command." Major-General MACDONNELL was visibly affected at leaving the Brigade, as was everyone who was formerly under his Command.

14-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE AREA.

Fine and warm. Battalion carried out Specialist Training and the instructors carried on with squad drill for recruits. The junior officers were on the square, and also had lectures in bombing and Lewis Gun work.

5 other ranks joined as reinforcements from C.B.D.
1 other rank evacuated C.C.S.

15-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE AREA.

Fine and warm. In the morning there was Church Parade, at which General LIPSETT and Brigadier General DYER attended. In the afternoon the 3RD Divisional Baseball team played the 4TH Divisional team and won by a score of 13 - 6.

Hon. Capt. H.J. BEARD, gazetted Temp. Captain.
8 other ranks evac. C.C.S.

16-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE AREA.

Dull day with a few showers. Inoculation of Battalion was commenced, two Companies were completed. Recruit drill was carried out.

1 other ranks evac. C.C.S.

17-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE AREA.

Fine and warm. Inoculation completed. Colonel HILL gave the junior Officers lectures on Tactical Schemes. In the afternoon the Brigade Finals in boxing were held. We had an entry in each class. We won the bouts in the Lightweights, Middleweights and Welter weights.

1 other ranks reported from C.C.S.

(Appendix No. 5.)

18-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE AREA.

Rained hard all day. The Officers had lectures on Tactical Schemes.

Lieut. A.A. ALLENBACK granted 10 days leave.
Lieut. L.A. NAYLOR, granted 10 days leave.
1 other rank reported from C.C.S.

19-7-17. - CHATEAU DE LA HAIE AREA.

Fine and warm. Preparations completed for moving up to SOUCHEZ VALLEY Area. A prize of 50 francs was offered for the platoon which has left its huts and area in cleanest condition. The prize was given to No. 13 Platoon. At 3.20 p.m. the Battalion paraded and them moved away. "C" and "D" Companies and battalion Headquarters in SOUCHEZ VALLEY Area. "A" and "B" Companies were to be over the Ridge in dugouts. "B" Company, however, stayed in the SOUCHEZ VALLEY Area for the night of the 19th and 20th July and is to move on tomorrow.

Working party of 1 Officer and 2 platoons was supplied by "C" Company.

1 other ranks reported from C.C.S.
2 other ranks evac. to C.C.S.

20-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Fine and warm. The day was spent in cleaning up the Area. Preparations are being made for Training to be carried out here, emphasis to be laid on bombing and Lewis Gun work. "B" Company moved over the ridge and thus "A" and "C" Companies are to be together and are to furnish working parties, under Orders from 9TH. C.I. Brigade. "B" Company is situated at S.10.d.33. "A" and "B" Companies each supplied a working party of 2 Officers and 100 other ranks.

21-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Fine and warm. Working party of 25 other ranks supplied to Camp Commandant in the morning.

(Appendix 6.)

21-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

"A" and "B" Companies each supplied a working party of 2 Officers and 100 other ranks. "C" Company supplied a working party of 1 Officer and 2 platoons.

Training carried out.

7 other ranks evac. to C.C.S.

22-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Fine and warm. Specialist Training carried out for "C" and "D" Companies. Two rifle ranges of 135 yards have been built and the trenches in this area are very suitable for carrying out work with live bombs. A large number of bombs have been secured and as much ammunition as necessary. As a result "C" and "D" Companies are enabled to put four hours work in, on bombing, Lewis Gun and musketry. There were no working parties this evening on account of the raid by the 9TH Brigade.

23-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Fine and warm. During the day "C" and "D" Companies carried on with Specialist Training. At night "A" and "B" supplied each 2 Officers and 100 other ranks for working parties, and "D" Company suppied a party of 1 Officer and 2 platoons.

Arrangements are being made for going out to rest and the men's packs and surplus kit were taken to LAPUGNOY by lorries. We had two lorries for this purpose.

(Appendix 7 and 8.)

24-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Fine and warm. Specialist Training carried out. No working parties after 5.00 p.m. 25 men in morning for Camp Commandant.

3 other ranks Evac. to C.C.S.

25-7-17. - SOUCHEZ VALLEY AREA.

Very wet day. The Battalion moved off at 9.15 a.m. and went overland to VILLERS AU BOIS. Halted about 11.00 a.m. just outside VILLERS AU BOIS for lunch. The band met the Battalion at VILLERS and the Drums at the CHATEAU DE LA HAIE. After lunch the Battalion moved off and arrived at COUPIGNY at 2.00 p.m. Dress was battle order and the Lewis Guns were carried in the Lewis Gun limbers. The Lewis Gun carts were in rear of the Battalion and were not used for carrying anything. At COUPIGNY the Battalion was billeted in huts.

26-7-17. - COUPIGNY.

Fine and warm. The battalion left COUPIGNY at 6.30 a.m. and arrived at LAPUGNOY at 9.45 a.m. Lunch was ready for the men after they had been allotted their billets. The afternoon was spent in cleaning up. The billets here are very nice, clean and dry. The only trouble is the lack of training grounds. There are none close to the village and in some cases Company training grounds are two miles distant.

27-7-17. - LAPUGNOY.

Dull day and cloudy. The morning was spent in the organization of the platoons, and the rest of the day in drill and cleaning up.

Lieut. W.M. WALLAR, admitted to F.A.
3 other ranks struck off strength.

28-7-17. - LAPUGNOY.

Fine and warm. Companies were out on the ranges during the day. Specialist training is being carried out. Attention is also being paid to drill and the R.S.M. is taking each Company in turn, with the Company Commander supervising the parade.

4 O.R. from C.C.S.

(Appendix 9., 10. and 11.)

29-7-17. - LAPUGNOY.

Very wet day but cleared up towards evening. Church Parade cancelled in the morning and no parades were held during the day. During the morning the Scouts and Snipers were on the Ranges, and had excellent practice in spite of the rain.

Lieut. L.A. NAYLOR, reported from English leave.
3 other ranks struck off strength on Evac. to C.C.S.

30-7-17. - LAPUGNOY.

Dull day, with showers at intervals. Syllabus of Training carried out, however. Scouts are reconnoitring routes to five areas we may have to go to in support. Lectures at 5.00 p.m. by Captain ARMSTRONG, on sniping, etc., all Company Commanders, Scout Officer and 10 other ranks attended. It was interesting and instructive.

31-7-17. - LAPUGNOY.

Dull and showery. Battalion was on the Ranges as per Syllabus. "B", "C" Cos. And Scouts had baths at AUCHEL. They are very good. "B" Company did a night route march in Gas Helmets.

1 other rank evac. to C.C.S.

(signed)
C.H. Hill
Lieut-Colonel,
Commanding The Royal Canadian Regiment.
31-7-17.


Appendix 1. - Instructions to R.C.R. for relieving the 58TH Cdn. Bn. in support line on night 2nd/3rd July, 1917.

Appendix 2. - R.C.R. O.O. 22 dated 8.7.17. R.C.R. will be relieved by 5TH C.M.R. on night 10th/11th July 1917, and will move to CHATEAU DE LA HAIE.

Appendix 3. - F.A. T dated 10.7.17. On completion of relief R.C.R. will move to ZOUAVE VALLEY on night 10th/11th July, 1917.

Appendix 4. - Syllabus of training of R.C.R. during period in Divisional Reserve.

Appendix 5. - Instructions to R.C.R. for relieving 58TH Cdn Bn in Support Area on 19th inst.

Appendix 6. - R.C.R. will probably move to COUPIGNY on July 25th and to LAPUGNOY on July 26th, 1917.

Appendix 7. - R.C.R. O.O. 23 dated 23.7.17. Instructions to R.C.R. for move to LAPUGNOY training area.

Appendix 8. - Administrative Arrangements to accompany R.C.R. Order 23.

Appendix 9. - Syllabus of training of R.C.R. for July 28th, 1917.

Appendix 10. - A Brief story of the history of the Royal Canadian Regiment, for use of instructors.

Appendix 11. - Syllabus of training of R.C.R. for 29th, 30th, 31st July, 1917.

Appendix 12. - S.C.Q.S. 27/4. Scheme for collection of stores, in the event of an advance.

Appendix 13. - Administrative Arrangements in connection with 3RD Can. Div. O.O. 120 dated 21-7-17.

Appendix 14. - 7TH C.I.B. O.O. 103 dated 23-7-17. Move of Brigade to Allougne - Lapugnoy - Lozinghern Training Area per attached march table on July 25, 1917 per Administrative Arrangements

Appendix 15. - S.O. 683 - dated 27-7-17. Further Instructions to O.O. 23.

Appendix 16. - 3RD Can. Div. G. 186/6 dated 27-7-17. letter re. Troops reinforcing Div. In Can Corps with March Table attached.

Appendix 17. - Field message dated 29-7-17.

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