Battle of Thiepval Ridge

The Battle of Thiepval Ridge was one of the several vicious and gory military engagements fought during the major Battle of the Somme. It took place near the town of Thiepval, France, from September 26 to September 28, 1916, during World War I. The Battle of Thiepval Ridge began when the British II Corps, commanded by Lieutenant General C.W. Jacob, and the Canadian Corps, led by General Bying, launched an attack against the German positions on the Thiepval Ridge along a 5 km front, anticipating another major attack on both banks of the Ancre river to pinch out the German salient. The British first objective was to drive the Germans off Thiepval Ridge high grounds. The British II Corps was supported by six of the eight available tanks, plus 800 field guns and howitzers set aside for the assault.

Preceded by an intense bombardment, the Battle of Thiepval Ridge was initiated at 12:35pm on September 26, 1916, with the II Corps four assault divisions. Shielded by a creeping barrage, the Canadian Corps attacked to the north and northwest of their positions at Courcelette and were successful in achieving limited objectives in wresting the base of the ridge from German control. The 11th Division, II Corps, advanced against Zollern Redoubt but severe casualties slowed their progress and by evening the attackers had stalled at its edge. Meanwhile tenacious infantry units of 18th Division, II Corps, systematically advanced uphill on Thiepval and met with early success, but enemy resistance stiffened and the push through to the village was halted by machine-gun fire near the ruined chateau. Nevertheless, a tank was used to spearhead another charge, and by 2.30pm, after much hard close-quarter fighting, the greater part of Thiepval had been secured by the stolid and audacious British troops.

During the afternoon of September 27, the 11th Division stormed Stuff Redoubt and gained precarious hold of its southern edge, while the 18th division, under the command of Major-General Maxse, captured the German fortress of Thiepval. Successful British operations concluded on September 28 with the capture of the Schwaben Redoubt, north of Thiepval.

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Thor is Carlos Benito Camacho, the manager and writer of this blog.