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First Name: William Last Name: FARR
Date of Death: 10/03/1915 Lived/Born In: Clapton
Rank: Private Unit: Wiltshire2
Memorial Site:

Current Information:



116, Millfields Road, Clapton

Merville Communal Cemetery

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.

On 10th  March at Neuve Chapelle 7th Division attacked with 21 Brigade. 2nd Wiltshire were in reserve and did not take part in the initial attack but remained in their position at Cameron Farm 2 miles north-west of Neuve Chapelle.  However at 1pm,  2nd Wiltshire were ordered  forward to some captured trenches. They then pushed on further to make contact with the left of 2nd Yorkshire who were attacking Moulin du Pietre, north-east of Neuve Chapelle and in the process  captured 100 Germans.  By dark they had filled the gap between 2nd Yorkshire and the old British line.  They had suffered numerous casualties during the day and more from the German shelling that night.

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