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Le Touquet Railway Crossing Cemetery, Belgium Le Touquet Railway Crossing Cemetery, Belgium
First Name: Robert Last Name: BURCHILL
Date of Death: 30/10/1914 Lived/Born In: Hackney
Rank: Rifleman Unit: Rifle Brigade1
Memorial Site: Shoreditch, St Leonard

Current Information:

Born-Shoreditch

Le Touquet Railway Crossing Cemetery

The Race to the Sea. September-October 1914

By the middle of September 1914, the Aisne battlefield had stagnated into trench warfare and in order to break this impasse, both sides tried to outflank each other in a general movement northwards. Moving up through Picardy, Artois and Flanders the race was over by 19th October when the North Sea was reached. The Western Front, a line of trenches stretching from Belgium to Switzerland, was now a reality. Initially it was the French army that conducted this movement whilst the British Expeditionary Force remained on the Aisne but by 6 October British reinforcements were needed to help beat off German attacks around Lille. They moved north and along with reinforcements from Britain, they took up new positions in Flanders, on the left of the Allied line and much closer to the Channel ports.

The Battle of Armentières  12th October-2nd November 1914

The official History pinpoints the battle of Armentières to a series of battles that took place between the river Douve and a line between Estaires and Foumers. It was part of the Race to the Sea and it determined the line of the Western Front in that sector. It was fought by III Corps. (4th & 6th Divisions + 19Brigade)

At 7.15 am on 30th October German skirmishers advanced in thin lines at Le Touquet  where 1st Rifle Brigade, 11, Brigade, 4th Division were holding the line. British artillery opened up and the Germans fell back but not before their own artillery had taken a toll with 195 shells falling close to the machine gunners of 1st Rifle Brigade.

 

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