Sir Joseph John Talbot Hobbs personal diaries, Vol. III. (3 February 1917 to 9 May 1918)

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April 23rd Dull morning, moderate vis. Quiet night. To Heights above CORBIE & VAIRE with G.O.C. 8th Infy Bde. viewed the Sector we are holding & Boche lines in front of same. Visited Bgd Gen CANNEN Comdg. 11th Infy Bde. at his H.Qs then L'. Col DAVIES comdg. 32nd Bn & got his dispositions. Visited H.Qs 14th Infy Bde at FOUILLY saw G.O.C. arranged for assisting to get petrol oil & wool out of Corbie. Apl. 24th Dull, misty bad vis. X At 3. a.m. this morning the Boche opened the heaviest Art bombardment on our lines I have ever heard. last night he bombarded CORBIE FOUILLY & AUBIGNY etc & did considerable damage. About 6. am. he launched his Infantry Attack. 2400 strong failed with heavy loss against our left. (8th Bde & 2 broke down under Artillery fire against 14th Bde. This attack on the 8th British Div on our Right however succeeded in driving British troops out of VILLER BRETONNEUX & they failed to retake it. I was then asked to give assistance to take part in an operation of some considerable strength to retake it. I offered to assist the G.O.C. & Div by a flank Attack during the morning but my offer was not accepted Finally during the Afternoon my Div was placed under III Corps. & I was instructed to prepare a scheme for assisting in the recapture of BRETONNEUX with the 13th Aust Bde who had been told off as a Reserve to the 8th Div I got in touch with III Corps. Comdr. Gen BUTLER who agreed to my plan of attack & after a great deal of trouble especially with regard to the Artillery standing barrage to screen the operation &