Monday, 15 May 2017

Battle of Bullecourt

The 3rd of May commemorated the 100th anniversary of the Second Battle of Bullecourt. Despite the failure of the first attack on Bullecourt on the 11th April, General Gough decided  to try and break the Hindenburg line again near the village of Bullecourt in France. The second battle was launched on the 3rd of May when the 2nd Australian Division attacked with the British alongside. Bitter fighting continued for over two weeks after which time the Germans gave up the fields around Bullecourt. The fighting led to 7, 482 Australian casualties.  The depleted Australian battalions were withdrawn to recover. Following Bullecourt  British attention was turning to Belgium where in the coming months the Australians would suffer their greatest losses of the war.

War historian Charles Bean writing in the official history described the Australian attack at Bullecourt as : 'The second Bullecourt (battle) was, in some ways, the stoutest achievement of the Australian  soldiers in France'

Following is how the Ballarat Courier reported the Battle.

Ballarat Courier 14 May 1917

Photograph of Bullecourt, France c1917, view of trenches close to village.

Photo courtesy of Australian War Memorial

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