Le Sars, infront of the Butte de Warlencourt after the end of the Somme Campaign 14/12/16

1/8th Worcestershire Regiment

From the beginning of December the 1/7th and 1/8th Worcesters held the line beneath the Butte de Warlencourt, on the Albert-Bapaume Road in great discomfort amid frost and deep mud. A raid was undertaken by both battalions in the 4th December, with the 7th Bn being more successful than her sister battalion. The 8th Bn were relieved on the 6th and returned on the 13th December. The handover from the 1/4th Gloucesters was completed around 10.30 pm and the front line was held on the left and right by B and C Coys respectively.

A patrol from B Coy consisting of 2/Lieut S H Wilkes, 1 NCO and 6 men (including Frank Page) left Scotland trench at 11.45pm and succeeded in killing two of the enemy – however one man of the raiding party was killed. The following day the Battalion war diary records “the usual enemy shelling around Le Sars and the support trenches.” This usual shelling included a direct hit on the right post in Scotland Trench held by B Coy by a 5.9in shell. It killed seven men and wounded one, the footballer L/Cpl William G Haynes of Pershore, so badly that he died of his wounds the following day. Of the casualties of this direct hit and the raid three were from Malvern, two were from Evesham and one was a Birmingham man who was previously a member of the Worcestershire Yeomanry. Another Malvern man (Pte Thomas Page) was probably wounded during this tour of the trenches.

Later on the 14th the line was relieved by Scottish troops of the 15th Division and the weary troops of the 8th Worcesters made their way back to camp near Contalmaison

Stacke, Capt H. FitzM The Worcestershire Regiment in the Great War Kidderminster 1921