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EuRob

Hull Pals at Oppy Wood

13 posts in this topic

Hello

I am a new member on this site and was directed here by a GMIC member after I posted a question on there. I am a member of GMIC as I collect Imperial German orders and medals, my pride and joy being a Wagner 1870 EK 2.kl, and also Imperial German photos mainly portraits with medals of the ones I have in my collection.

I am currently reading about the Hull Pals (from Hull myself) and I know they fought at Oppy wood etc etc

What I am after an answer to is.....Which German army did they fight at Oppy and who was in command of this army? Any info on this battle would be great and much appreciated. Have been told Hitlers 6th Bavarian reserve army were just south of Oppy at the time and wondered if they got involved? If any members could give me a detailed account of the German unit which fought at Oppy I would be truly grateful!!!

Thanks

Rob

ex-RM

Mods please redirect and apologies if I have put this in the wrong section?

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Doing searches on here prior to me being able to post I noticed that JOSEPH....Charles? from Ull on Umber is very knowledgable on the East Yorkshires! Any chance you could chime in on this post Joseph/Charles?

Cheers

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Welcome to the forum Rob

I'm sure Charles will be along before the day is out. This book here may be of some use

cheers, Jon

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Have been told Hitlers 6th Bavarian reserve army were just south of Oppy

the 6th Bavarian Reserve Division was in the area from May 8th - 11th 1917 and back there for a few days in June. i don't think they got up to much.

dave.

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Rob,

Welcome to the forum.

I have looked at this before though only briefly, the 6th Bavarian Reserve where in Nueve Chappelle until the 10th May 1917 moving then to the Oppy area. The 92nd Brigade was in the Gravelle area on the 13th May the 12th Bn was in the front line could well have been opposite them there.

Dave may have more up to date info on the German troop movements than me, so could have been around.

Regards Charles

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Cheers fellas for the replies

Jon, that archived book you sent me link to is awesome! Will take me an age to sift through all that but definately will help me research German armies in the great war, tyvm!

I put a post on Axis forum so will put up a link to this and what I got was very good!!

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=152255

Noticed your monthly movements on the 11th EYR during the great war Charles and very concise! Was these movements the same as the Hull "commercials" (10th) ?

Also, thinking about doing a Battlefield tour with Leger 'Arras-Britains Bloodiest battle & the war underground' as the tour includes the Oppy wood area and I believe there is a memorial to the Hull pals there? Anyone been and recommend?

Am enjoying reading 'the trench' and learning lots on the Hull pals that I never knew! Will view Wenlock Barracks with different eyes from now on!

Once again thanks a lot!

For those that are interested I have posted a link to my area of collecting

http://gmic.co.uk/index.php?showtopic=26969

Rob

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Rob,

"Noticed your monthly movements on the 11th EYR during the great war Charles and very concise! Was these movements the same as the Hull "commercials" (10th) ?"

The Hull Pals fought as a brigade, the 92nd Brigade, depending who was in the front line, support and reserve, depends on what position they held. As a rule of thumb within a 4,000 yard square. The front line about a 1,000 yards wide so different days means different units in the front line. I am sure Hitler wasn't part of the opposing forces at Oppy wood (3rd May) but as the Brigade moved on its next serial of trench warfare, it could be possible.

Do you know when he was wounded and where? I have different dates when he returned to combat.

Can you find map references as to his (Hitler's) units movements?, I have conflicting references and dates, my opinion is they were there or not. It would be nice to put a line under 'Who What Where'.

I went to Oppy myself not with a tour, but I am sure you would get a very good discription of the Battle and the monument for any lad from Hull is special. There is nothing in Hull that has that feeling.

Regards Charles

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Rob, I only have details for where units were for the 3rd Battle of the Scarpe, i.e starting 3rd May, but this is the day of major action for the 92nd Brigade which was made up of Hull Pals. In the area you are talking about the references are that 208th Division held the line from the Scarpe to south east of Gavrelle (i.e. south of your specific area) and was reinforced, because of earlier losses by 17th Bavarian Reserve Infantry Regt. which was part of 6th Bav. Res. Div. so at least some of that division had moved down to the area before the 10th as Charles has quoted, but not in front of Oppy. 1st Guard Res. Div. covered south-east of Gavrelle to the Oppy-Bailleul road. This puts it in front of Oppy but it also had an attachment, 28th Res. Rgt. of 185th Division, just to confuse.North of the road was 15th Reserve Division.

My notes do not have mention of some of the units on the map provided on the other forum. Most of my material is in France so I can't confirm much of this but I think 1st Reserve Division is really 1st Guards Reserve Division (not 1st Bav. Res. Div. as Peter says) and the one third shown must be the 28th Res. Rgt. The map implies 6th Bavarian Res. in the front line. As I have mentioned above this might not have been the case.

I need my books in France :unsure:

Jim

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Thanks for your input Jim!

I think you are right with reference to the German division in front of Oppy Wood. I got hold of David Biltons "Oppy Wood" book yesterday and on chapter 3 (May1917, May 3rd) to quote, p74, ".......Facing the two British divisions, the German positions were held by experienced and, in some cases, rested troops. The trenches from the southeast of Gavrelle to the Oppy-Bailleul road were garrisoned by 1 Guard Reserve Division with the central section of this front held by 28 reserve regiment (185 division)....."

It also mentions later on p75 ".....Through gaps in the shattered wood, observers on the ridge could see 'the Oppy trenches, filled with dead Prussians......". This would confirm that it wasnt the 1st Bayr Res.

Does anyone know where the 1st Guard Reserve Division were located in Prussia pre-1914 or during the Great War ie training etc? where their barracks were located in Prussia?

Again, thanks to all who have chimed in on this post

Rob

**Charles-I will try to find out about A.H. movements and dates of when he was injured and returned etc and get back to you. There are some knowledgable guys over on GMIC and I will ask**

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Can anyone help me with which units of the 92nd Brigade were attacking Oppy Wood on 3 May?

The OH (page 446) says that the Brigade ‘attacked with three battalions in line, 11th, 12th and 13th East Yorkshire’.

However, the attached map from the NA appears to show that it was actually the 12th, 11th and 10th (from north to south) that attacked. I am guessing that the plan shown on this map was amended, with the 13th Bn coming in for the 10th. Can anyone who has the Hull Pals book or who has a particular interest in this attack let me know? And if so, can you confirm the battalions’ positions from north to south?

Many thanks

Jeremy

post-16428-1249997308.jpg

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Just having a quick look at the book, and the units are 12th North of Oppy Wood, 11th, then 10th South of the wood in line of Bailleul.

DW

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Thanks for this. It appears from your description that their deployment was as per the map I posted. It seems that Cyril Falls may have made a mistake in the Official History in saying that the 11,12 & 13th Bns formed the Brigade frontage.

Thanks again

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Thanks for this. It appears from your description that their deployment was as per the map I posted. It seems that Cyril Falls may have made a mistake in the Official History in saying that the 11,12 & 13th Bns formed the Brigade frontage.

Thanks again

The page 117 map shows only very little detail with assembly points, German front line and the Divisional Objective.

DW

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