Sir Joseph John Talbot Hobbs personal diaries, Vol. II (14 January 1916 to 31 January 1917)

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through BAILLIEU, & the Villages. all the Windows shuttered the places in total darkness & no one in the streets. like cities of the dead. fine day. May 2nd Inspected new Gun emplacements being prepd by No.1 Batty, also 5th Batt & their Billets, then went to O/C Group. fired in co operation with LORINGS heavy Batteries & R.F.C. Forbes How Batt. Shelled in return & had to stop firing - fine day May 3rd Went through front line trenches Right (PETILLON) Group - with O/C Art Group & O/C trench mortar Batteries inspected Emplacements etc of med. trench mortar Batteries. I gave directions for alterations & improvements especially with regard to magazines. not to have large quantities (more than 20 rounds Stored in one pit. 'X' The walk round the trenches is long & tiring took me nearly 6 hours to do the right Group - walking on the duck boards with wire netting & expanded metal on them very trying. very sad to see the graves of those of our gallant men who fell in the fighting about this time last year - crosses often labelled Unknown British Soldier or Hero these graves are just in rear of the trenches. all this ground we are now on has seen heavy fighting as the holes in the ground, the ruined Farms & Villages broken trees etc testify May 4 Inspected the whole of the Batteries & Billets of left GROUP [Page] 43