10th December 1914
The Dorsets were relieved by the 2nd Bn. King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry but hideous weather made progress very slow. Although they were bound for billets in St Jans Cappel midnight passed and they were still en route, hence I will post the map of their march tomorrow.
The reason that the Dorsets were leaving this area so quickly was because the 13th Brigade had relived the 15th Brigade from Dranoutre. The 2nd Bn. KOYLI are allocated what 5th Division refer to as “Sector E” when they replace the 1st Bn Dorsets.
Another interesting story from the 5th Division’s diary today is that during the night the Germans opened up with a cannonade of rifle fire apparently in reply to cheering men of the 14th Brigade. They were cheering upon hearing the news of a British victory at sea.
The Daily Telegraph reports the victory in the Battle of the Falkland Islands; .revenge for the earlier defeat at Coronel, just off the Chilean coastline. The British Government was quick to silence the earlier humiliation.
The Admiralty made known through the Press Bureau the glorious news that the major portion of the German Squadron under the command of Admiral Graf von Spee is now at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean as the result of an action fought off the Falkland Islands with a British Squadron under Vice-Admiral Sir Frederick Sturdee.
While the Telegraph’s reporting gets the story right here (albeit with some typically jingoistic chest beating), the same can’t be said for their “reporting” from the trenches. Their reporter’s claim that “the allied French, British, and Belgian armies on this side of the line are superior in number, equipment, and, one might assert with certainty, in “morale”” couldn’t have been further from the truth.
I’m sure Frank was glad to see the back of the filthy, wet, stinking he’d just emerged from.