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Le Touret Memorial Le Touret Memorial
First Name: Albert Robert Last Name: HART
Date of Death: 10/03/1915 Lived/Born In: Chalk Farm
Rank: Lance Corporal Unit: West Yorkshire2
Memorial Site: Le Touret Memorial

Current Information:

Enlisted-Stratford

The Indian Army Corps and IV Corps attacked the village of Neuve Chapelle in the Artois region of France between 10th and 13th March, 1915. During the winter of 1914-1915, reinforcements had arrived from Britain and this was seen as an opportunity to use them to break through the German lines.

It started well. At 7.30am on 10th March, a 30 minute hurricane bombardment destroyed the German wire and front line trenches and at 8.05am the infantry went in. Neuve Chapelle was captured and over a mile of the German line taken. But that was the end of the success.  The British chain of command was weak and their communications poor, which was hardly surprising given that many of the troops had no previous experience of battle. The Germans re-organised and reinforced during the night and no further gains were made. British casualties mounted to 12,000 by the time the offensive petered out on 13th March.

2nd West Yorkshire were the reserve  battalion of 23rd Brigade, 8th Division which attacked at Neuve Chapelle on 10th April 1915..  The attack did not go well. An inadequate artillery barrage meant that the wire was not cut properly and the two attacking battalions, 2nd Middlesex and 2nd Scottish Rifles came to grief. At 8.30am, 2nd West Yorkshire moved up into the vacated 2nd Middlesex trenches where they were caught by German shelling and suffered a number of casualties. An hour later 2 companys of 2nd West Yorkshire sent forward to support the hard pressed  2nd Scottish Rifles and some progress was made.  Around midday the survivors of 2nd Middlesex and the rest of 2nd West Yorkshire advanced to find the Orchard undefended and not even prepared for defence.  It was occupied without loss.  At the same time others of 2nd West Yorkshire worked north from the Orchard to the Moated Grange which had been mortared all morning.  A few German survivors surrendered as the position was taken.   

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