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Person Details
05 Feb 1897
He was the son of Claude Alfred and Margaret Ann Marriott of 46 Wilford Grove Nottingham and later The Gables, Howsthorpe, Alford, Lincolnshire. His father was a solicitor and insurance agent. Claude was also the brother of Winifred, Mildred and Sybil Marriott.
27 Nov 1917
1755054 - CWGC Website
2/4th Bn Duke of Wellington's (West Riding Regiment)
The Battle of Cambrai, November 1917 Guest Book 20 November 1917 Graincourt Whilst the 51st (Highland) Division continued with its struggle against Flesquières throughout the afternoon the 62nd (West Riding) Division continued to battle its way towards Graincourt lès Havrincourt (The word lès in French - note the accent - means: near to. Lez in names means the same). Under the leadership of the youngest Brigadier General in the British Army: Roland Bradford VC, who was just 25 years old, 186th Brigade had to advance up the eastern side of the Canal du Nord, secure the main Bapaume Road and take the Hindenburg Support system to the east of Moeuvres. The Brigade was made up four battalions from the Duke of Wellington's Regiment: 2/4th, 2/5th, 2/6th and 2/7th. The significance of the 2 before the battalion number is that these were second line territorials. Moving out of their positions in Havrincourt Wood at 0900 hours the Brigade was accompanied by most of the 1st King Edward's Horse and a Company of tanks from G Battalion. Two hours later they were up on the Division's recently taken second objective (the Brown Line) and commenced their attack. Leading the assault the 2/5th Battalion on the left and the 2/6th on the right found resistance obstinate enough in places and it took them three hours to advance a thousand metres into the Hughes Switch system. In the next wave the 2/4th, following the 2/6th, initially waited on the Highlanders on their right before trying to advance on Graincourt but the Scots were still well occupied in Flesquières. Aided by a fold in the ground which greatly protected their exposed flank the battalion reached Graincourt covered by the King Edward's Horse on their right. Attempts by the cavalrymen to infiltrate behind Flesquières however were immediately met by machine gun fire. General Bradford came up to survey the situation and ordered the 2/4th to attack Graincourt with the aid of tanks. Six of the machines had already been put out of action by German field artillery on the edge of the village but they were in turn destroyed by tanks slipping in by another route. By 1530 hours Graincourt had been secured and General Bradford was planning his next move. What he does not appear to have received was an order from Division telling him to stop where he was, as the Highlanders were in need of a flanking attack. The King Edward's Horse were sent out towards Anneux but found the wire uncut and the machine gun fire very heavy. On the main road a Company of 2/4th Battalion came across a column of 200 marching Germans and managed to snatch an officer and two soldiers in the dark before opening fire on the remainder, killing or capturing almost all of them. For the days fighting the English had suffered just 53 casualties. To their left the 2/7th bombed and bayoneted their way down the Hindenburg trenches towards the main road ably supported by the few tanks available to them. But alongside the canal the 2/5th were having a hard time in the Hughes system. In its initial advance the battalion had already lost its commanding officer: Lt Colonel Best in fighting around Havrincourt Château and they were now fighting a hard battle in the German trenches (He is buried in Ruyaulcourt Military Cemetery). The Germans though were slowly but surely losing ground and by the time night had fallen the battalion had taken 350 prisoners for 73 of their own casualties.4th Battalion came across a column of 200 27th November 1917 The last Effort Insisting that Bourlon be taken and forever worrying that the enemy were on the point of collapse Haig told Byng to take over personal control of the battle. On the 26th the artillery began pounding the German lines in preparation for an assault by the Guards Division against Fontaine and the 62nd Division against Bourlon. At 0620 hours the following morning 2nd Guards Brigade advanced. 3rd Grenadiers up the main road, 1st Coldstreams in the centre and 2nd Irish between the village and Bourlon Wood. Initially going forward without the tanks they were soon overtaken by the machines. The Guards suffered enormous losses as they advanced against enfilading fire from La Folie wood and became embroiled in house to house fighting. The situation was intolerable and by 1300 hours it was over. Despite great courage and tenacity the Guardsmen had been overwhelmed by an entrenched enemy in superior numbers. It was much the same story for the 62nd Division. Major General Bradford VC was ordered to take his 186th Brigade into the wood and clear the remaining Germans out of the northern sector. His men from the Duke of Wellington's Regiment pushed on through the wood and reached the village on the far side but it was impossible to advance further in the face of German artillery fire. Against Bourlon village 2/5th York and Lancaster and 2/5th Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry were supported by eleven tanks from F Battalion. They managed to get into the village only to find that it had escaped great damage from the bombardment and the German defenders had taken the time to barricade every street and alleyway. To deal with the tanks the Germans had hidden field artillery pieces within the village. Only five of the tanks returned when after two hours of fighting the attack was called off. The British had worn themselves out. The line was not going to be broken and swept away and Haig had not had the victory that would have redeemed himself in the eyes of the politicians back home. to be sacrificed on the Western Front to rescue them.
2/4th Battalion Duke of Wellington’s Regiment Formed at Halifax in September 1914 as a home service ("second line") unit. Moved to Derbyshire. 1 March 1915 : attached to 186th Brigade in 62nd (2nd West Riding) Division. Moved to Thoresby Park (Ollerton) in May 1915. Moved in October 1915 to Retford, November 1915 to Newcastle, January 1916 to Salisbury Plain, June 1916 Halesworth, October 1916 to Bedford. Landed in France in January 1917.
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