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War Diary, 2/18th London Regiment – June 1916

June 14th – Sutton Veny.
4pm – OCs of Battalions called to Brigade Headquarters to receive personal instructions from GOC and mobilisation orders received.
Verbal orders received by OC’s units from GOC.

June 15th – Sutton Veny.
Secret orders on mobilisation issued to units.
First day’s mobilisation programme completed as follows:
All ranks paraded, inspected for discrepancies and deficiencies in kit- deficiencies indented for.
All men medically inspected – no disease detected.

June 16th – Sutton Veny.
Second day’s mobilisation programme completed:
Part worn and condemned clothing returned.
Battalion accounts closed.
Surplus equipment returned.
Pay and mess books closed as against pay but kept open for rations.

June 17th – Sutton Vemy.
Third day’s mobilisation programme completed.
All personal property of officers and men returned.
Their platoon Brigade Rapid Loading Competition completed – won by 2/17th.
2 Lt A Cousins reported for duty from 3rd line and posted to B Coy.

June 18th – Sutton Vemy.
Fourth day of mobilisation.
Programme carried out – huts inspected and deficiencies noted.

June 19th – Sutton Vemy.
Fifth day of mobilisation programme carried out.
2 Lt Whyte reported for duty from 3rd line and posted to A Coy.

June 20th – Sutton Vemy.
Sixth day of mobilisation.
Foot inspection according to programme – inspection of rifles by Armourer Sergeant.
655am-120pm: Brigade Route March via Longbridge Deverill-East Knoyle-pt 689.
Distance 15 miles – casualties 10. Bttn strength on parade 714 all ranks.
2 Lts Oliver and Pinkerton reported for duty from 3rd line and posted to A and C Coys respectively.
2 Lts Dale officer i/c details ordered to proceed to join 1st Bttn. His place taken by Captain Harrison.

June 21st – Sutton Vemy.
Seventh day of mobilisation.
All huts scrubbed with creosole – all rubbish burnt or buried.
Gas helmets, I discs, Paybooks, small kits etc inspected.

June 22nd – Sutton Vemy.
Final day of mobilisation before embarkation.
General Parade of all ranks in overseas order – all deficiencies noted and landed to Quartermaster.

June 23rd – Sutton Vemy.
Bttn marched to entrain for Warminster for Southampton for Havre. Bttn less transport, 4 officers and 138 men sailed from docks on SS St Tudno at 630pm. Remainder on SS Australind with Brigade Headquarters. Embarkation strength – officers 34, OR 938. Horses and mules – 64. Machine guns (Lewis) – 4 ….Bicycles – 9.

June 24th – Havre.
Bttn disembarked Havre docks – casualties in personnel nil. Last details Dock Rest Camp 1230 pm. No 633 S/C/Sgt HS Bisley detailed to proceed to Rouen in accordance with HCJ.

June 25th – Havre.
Bttn less 6 officers and 250 other ranks under Capt Harding entrained 754am, marching from rest camp 4am. Travelled via Rouen, Amiens, Abbeville to detraining point at Le Petit Hoovin (5 miles south of St Pol) – and marched to billet at Averdoing. Main party arrived at Averdoing one hour later.

June 26th – Averdoing.
Battalion (complete) remained in billets – routine inspections carried out.

June 27th – Averdoing.
Bttn marched – C and D Companies under Major Parry – 4pm. Headquarters remained in – 430pm – Tanques and Hubigny to Acq. C and D Companies further to Mt St Eloi. For instruction, Bttn placed under orders of 152nd Brigade.

June 28th – Acq.
Bttn remained in billets in Acq and Mt St Eloi.

June 29th – Acq.
Bttn remained in billets as above.

June 30th – Acq.
Officers and NCOs of A & B proceeded to be attached to 152nd Brigade for instruction in Trenches. C and D Coys under Captain McClure proceeded from billets in Mt St Eloi at 9pm to Brigade Reserve Trenches. Major Parry returned from Mt St Eloi to Acq to take charge of remainder of A & B Coys and Bttn Headquarters.