Profile Page

Menin Gate, Ypres Menin Gate, Ypres
First Name: Leslie Alfred Last Name: NEEDHAM
Date of Death: 21/04/1915 Lived/Born In: Queens Park
Rank: Rifleman Unit: London9
Memorial Site: Menin Gate, Ypres

Current Information:


8, Milman Road, Queens Park


The Battle of Hill 60 (17 April – 7 May 1915)

Hill 60 is at the southern end of the Ypres Salient and is a man made mound from earth excavated from the nearby railway. It was an important vantage point for whoever controlled it which at the beginning of 1915 was the Germans. In April 1915, 5th Division took over the line in front of it and prepared to capture it. On 17th April six mines were blown beneath it which so discombobulated the defending Germans that 13 Brigade was able to capture it, sustaining only seven casualties. However, holding it was a much more difficult task. German artillery began to pound the position and early next morning they launched three counter attacks which were only repelled after heavy losses and only after the British had been forced back to the crest of the hill. Later that evening British counter attacks retook all of the hill The next three days saw intense German shelling of the position and numerous counter attacks until it was a mass of shell holes and mine craters. Between 1st and 5th May the Germans launched a series of attacks preceded by gas and eventually after desperate fighting, took back the hill.

Except for their machine-gun section, the 9th London battalion of 13 Brigade were not involved in the initial action on 17th April but on the night of 19th April, they moved up in close support of the troops battling it out on Hill 60 and on the following day moved first to Larch Wood and then into the battered trenches on the hill. There followed two days of fierce fighting and concentrated German shell fire before they were relieved having suffered over 100 casualties. One of these was Leslie Needham who was killed on 21st April.

« Back to Search Results
If you think any of the information shown here is incorrect, Click Here to submit your amends and comments
Copyright 2024 London War Memorial