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Loos Memorial, France Loos Memorial, France
First Name: Alexander Last Name: MUNRO
Date of Death: 02/03/1916 Lived/Born In: Waterloo
Rank: Lance Corporal Unit: Royal Fusiliers9
Memorial Site: Loos Memorial, France

Current Information:

Age-30

Born-Lambeth

In mid-February , 1916, 12th Division returned to the area of the Hohenzollern Redoubt that they had left in November 1915 after the Battle of Loos. Since then, by mortaring, shelling and mining the Germans had captured The Chord, a trench that had been the British front line.  They had exploded some shallow mines in the clay above the chalk which formed craters with high lips which made perfect observation posts for them with the British front line strung across the slope below them.  Throughout the winter, 170 Tunnelling Coy of the Royal Engineers had laid three deep mines below the German’s  shallow system and they needed firing soon before they were discovered.  The blowing of these mines would leave huge craters for which there would be a desperate fight and after some consideration the decision was taken to explode these mines and recapture the Chord.

This took place on 2nd March, 1916. At 5.45pm, without any preliminary artillery bombardment, the three mines were detonated and this was the signal for the artillery to open up and for 36 Brigade, 12th Division  to attack the Hohenzollern. Making the attack was 8th Royal Fusiliers, 9th Royal Fusiliers, 70th Field Company of the Royal Engineers and  1 ½ companies of 5th Northamptonshire, the divisional pioneer battalion. The weather was clear when they went over but heavy ground from previous rain and snow hampered their progress somewhat.  9th Royal Fusiliers got into the enemy trenches without opposition and catching the Germans as they emerged from their dug-outs, they were able to take  80 prisoners.  8th Royal Fusiliers were not so lucky and their leading lines were all shot down except for a few on the right.  Nevertheless all the three big craters were occupied as well as the smaller, older ones and the engineers set to work destroying the mine entrances in Triangle crater.  Except for the northern stretch of the Chord, all objectives were successfully captured.

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