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Hautrage Military Cemetery, Belgium Hautrage Military Cemetery, Belgium
First Name: Harold Martin Last Name: SOAMES
Date of Death: 23/08/1914 Lived/Born In: Westbourne Park
Rank: Lieutenant Unit: Hussars20
Memorial Site: Westbourne Park, St Stephen

Current Information:



Hautrage Military Cemetery, Belgium


The Battle of Mons  August 23, 1914

This was the first battle fought by the British Army (BEF) in the war. Since landing in France ten days earlier the four infantry divisions and five cavalry brigades of the BEF had advanced to a position on the left flank of the French Armies only to find themselves directly in the line of the advance of the German First Army as they swept through Belgium and headed for Paris.

With orders to hold the German advance for 24 hours and outnumbered two to one, the BEF dug in along the Mons-Conde canal. The battle commenced at 9 am and lasted all day. By nightfall the BEF had withdrawn to the Valenciennes-Maubeuge road, a position from which the Great Retreat began the next day. British casualties, killed, wounded or missing, amounted to 1600 for the battle. German casualties were higher.

20th Hussars were part of the 5th Cavalry Brigade and on 23rd August they were operating a few miles to the east of Mons when Harold Soames was killed while on patrol duty near the village of Binche.


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