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Thiepval Memorial, France Thiepval Memorial, France
First Name: Adolphus Last Name: TEEDON
Date of Death: 15/09/1916 Lived/Born In: Silvertown
Rank: Private Unit: Essex11
Memorial Site: 1. Silvertown, Brick Lane Music Hall 2. Thiepval Memorial, France

Current Information:

Age-23

20, Mill Road, West Silvertown

203, North Woolwich Road, West Silvertown

 

The Battle of the Somme (July-November, 1916)

By the beginning of September, 1916,  the Battle of the Somme had been raging for two months. Thousands of men had already been killed or wounded or were simply missing, never to be seen again and and just a few square miles of the French countryside, all in the southern part of the battlefield, had been captured from the enemy. Mistakes had been made by the various commanders and would be continued to be made but there was no turning back as the British, Australians, South Africans, New Zealanders and Canadians carried on battering away at the German defences in the hope of a breakthrough, So it continued all the way through to November with nearly every battalion and division then in France being drawn into it at some stage. In the end the German trenches had been pushed back a few more miles along most of the line but the cost in lives had been staggering. By the end of the fighting in November, 1916, British Army casualties numbered over 400,000, killed, wounded and missing.

6th Division arrived on the Somme battlefield at the beginning of August, 1916 and on 15th September they took part in an attack on Straight Trench and the Quadrilateral, a German strongpoint near the village of Guillemont. Things did not go to plan. The Quadrilateral was a strongly defended position and the British artillery bombardment had not destroyed the barbed wire in front of it. Consequently the attack faltered and that evening, in an attempt to break the dead lock, the 11th Essex battalion of 18 Brigade, supported by the 2nd Yorks & Lancs battalion of  16 Brigade had another go at reaching the objectives. The men assembled along the northern edge of Leuze Wood but their move forward had been spotted by an enemy plane and heavy fire was immediately brought to bear on them from the Quadrilateral and from Bouleaux Wood. This brought the attack to a premature end and with casualties of over 150 they moved back to Maltz Horn Farm. Adolphus Teedon was one of those killed in action on 15th September.

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