The First World War
War Diary of The Royal Canadian Regiment

Transcription by Captain Michael O'Leary, The RCR.

MAY 1916

1.5.16. - Camp "E"

Strength on 1.5.16 36 Officers 987 Other Ranks

Increase Officers.

Lieut V.W.S. HERON, Lieut. H.W. DAVIS, Lieut. J.S. WOODS, joined from overseas 3.4.16.

Captain G. DWYER, Captain H.P. BELL, Lieut A.S. CHURCHILL, Lieut T.F. TURNER, Lieut T.F. MORRISON, 40TH Battalion, joined from overseas 17.4.16.
Lieut R.B PENNIMAN joined from overseas, 21.4.16.
Major C. HILL assumed Command of the Regiment, 23.4.16.

Decrease Officers.

Captain K.M. HOLLOWAY, Invalided to England Sick 6.4.16.
Captain R.E. BALDERS Invalided to England Sick 12.4.16.
Lieut. Col. A.H. MACDONELL, appointed to Command 5TH Canadian Infantry Brigade, 22.4.16.
Lieut. C.L. WOOD Struck off Strength 23.4.16 (Medical Board).

2 Officers and 15 Other ranks proceeded on leave this date.

2.5.16. - Camp "E"


3.5.16. - Camp "E"


4.5.16. - Camp "E"

Captain A.E. WILLOUGHBY, proceeded on Command to 5TH Canadian Infantry Brigade Headquarters (H.31.d.2.8.) Sheet 28.

5.5.16. - Camp "E"


6.5.16. - Camp "E"


7.5.16. - Camp "E"

R.C.R. Relieved 42ND Canadian Battalion in the right Sub Sector, Right Brigade. Relief completed 11.30 p.m. The Companies took over trenches as follows:-

R.C.R. left Camp "E" (H.19.a.) at 7 p.m. "A" and "C" Companies proceeding to ASYLUM in 8 motor lorries. "B" and "D" Companies marched to BRANDHOEK and went by train as far as the ASYLUM. Enemy shelled VLAMERTINGHE-YPRES road as the battalion was moving up, but inflicted no casualties. Operation Order No. 8 attached. Reference Maps Sheet 28, 1/40,000. P.P.C.L.I. on our left, the 4th Battalion on our right.

8.5.16. - Trenches

Major E.K. EATON, proceeded on Command to 9th Canadian Infantry Brigade for Instruction.

2 Officers and 15 Other ranks proceeded on Leave. Situation quiet. Wind S by S.W. Raining.

No. 477602 Pte C.E. BRYSON, G.S. Wound, little finger, Right hand, At Ration Dump.

38 Other ranks Reinforcements arrived from overseas, remained at Transport Lines.

5 O.R. returned from Base Hospital.

9.5.16. - Trenches

Weather wet. Situation quiet.

Lieut. H. WESTMORLAND, left for 1ST Canadian Divisional Train.
Lieut. H. PHILLIPS took over Transport this date.
No. 477326 Pte F. FENNINES, Killed, G.S. through head and helmet, whilst on wiring party in front of trench 56. (CVWM)
No. 477828 Sgt C.A. SHAW, Wounded in right foot, G.S.

13TH Battalion on our right.

10.5.16. - Trenches

Situation quiet. Wind N.W.

No. 477814 Pte W. SAWLER, Shell wound in head.
No. 478033 Sgt WOODLAND, H. slight shell wound in face and at duty.
No. 478038 L/Cpl. WRIGHT, A. slight shell wound in breast and at duty.

11.5.16. - Trenches

Situation quiet. Wind S.W. to W.

No. 477108 Pte W.J. BRITTON, Wounded by enemy shell fire in right arm at BORDER DUGOUTS.
No. 477400 Cpl. HERRON, W.A. slight shell wound, Right leg, and at duty.
No. 478051 Pte LAING, F. Killed in Action by enemy shell at BORDER DUGOUTS. Buried I.24.c.3.9. Sheet 28 (MAPLE COPSE.)
No. 477734 Pte POULTER, Contusions of neck. Buried by sandbags.

Inter Company relief. New distribution as follows:-

BORDER DUGOUTS evacuated this date owing to them being continually heavily shelled and it was considered that they are not of any tactical value.

12.5.16. - Trenches

Situation quiet. Wind Easterly at 4. a.m. Gas Alert put on at 4.25 a.m. and taken off at 11.15 a.m. wind having changed to West. In the afternoon a small strafe was put on by Trench Mortar battery and Artillery with the intention of scattering enemy working party in his advanced trench also destroying his work. Strafe was quite successful. His retaliation quite severe, but no material damage done. Causing no casualties.

No. 477353 Pte T. GORDON, G.S. wound Right eye while on covering party.
No. 477565 Pte W. MAGINNIS, G.S. wound left elbow while on Listening Post.

13.5.16. - Trenches

Situation quiet. Wind S.E. in early part of morning Bearing round to West later. Rain most of the day.

14.5.16. - Trenches

Situation quiet. Wind W. Weather finer No rain.

No. 477461 Pte H. JEROME, G.S. Wound left breast and arm. While on wiring party.
No. 400823 Pte C. HARRIS, G.S. wound Right thigh while on wiring party.
No. 477869 Pte D.D. SPENCER, bayonet wound right thigh. Caused by falling onto bayonet whilst getting over parapet when driven from wiring party.
No. 477442 Pte E. HUNTER G.S. wound, left hand whilst on covering party.

"Stand To" false alarm passed down the line at 2. a.m.

No. 477099 Pte W.E. BRAID, Shell shock and at duty.
No. 477853 Pte G. SMITH G.S. wound left breast and left arm.

15.5.16. - Trenches

Situation quiet. Weather Changeable, Warmer. R.C.R. relieved by 60TH Battalion, 7TH Can. Inf. Brigade. Relieved by 9TH Can. Inf. Bde. R.C.R. Relief complete by 1.10 a.m. 16.5.16. R.C.R. moved into Camp "A" (G.11.o.) Sheet 28 and became Divisional Reserve. About 3.30 a.m. one enemy bomb was dropped from an aeroplane about 500 yards west of Camp.

16.5.16. - Camp "A"


17.5.16. - Camp "A"

Working party of 340 men at night in vicinity of front line.

No. 444580 Pte W. RILEY, G.S. wound in centre of back at 9.50 p.m. while of working party in trenches. NEW BOND STREET.

About 11.30 a.m. 2 bombs were dropped about 300 yards from Camp "A" to west of it.

18.5.16. - Camp "A"

Weather fine, otherwise Nil.

19.5.16. - Camp "A"


20.5.16. - Camp "A"


21.5.16. - Camp "A"

Working party of 275 Other ranks left at 7.15 p.m.

No. 477173 Pte H. CLARKE Killed by G.S. left breast. While on working party. Buried at I.9.d.2.5. (CVWM)

22.5.16. - Camp "A"


23.5.16. - Camp "A"

7TH. Can. Inf. Bde. Relieved 8TH. Can. Inf. Bde. In Left Sector. R.C.R. moved from Camp "A" at 7.30 p.m. into Support and relieved 49TH Battalion. Distribution as follows. Battalion H.Q. "B" and "C" Coy's, 2 sections Bombers, 2 Lewis Guns and crews, 24 Signallers to BELGIAN CHATEAU.

"A" and "D" Coy's, 2 sections Bombers, 2 Lewis Guns and crews and Scouts to ZILLEBEKE BUND.

Relief complete at 11.30 p.m. Relief Order No. 11 attached.

24.5.16. - Trenches

Working parties totalling 290 O.R.

No. 477856 Pte F. SMITH, wounded G.S. Right leg while on working party.

25.5.16. - Trenches

Working parties totalling 290 O.R.

No. 478023 L/Cpl. WITHERS, F.W. Killed G.S. Right Breast BOND STREET C.T. (CVWM)
No. 477522 Pte LAWRENCE, F. Wounded G.S. Left Leg. CHINA WALL C.T.
No. 477859 Pte SMITH, L. Wounded G.S. Right Forearm, DORMY HOUSE LANE.

26.5.16. - Trenches

Working parties totalling 290 O.R. left dugouts between 7.30 p.m. and 8. p.m.

No. 477926 Pte J. TRIMBLE, wounded Shrapnel Left Knee at GORDON HOUSE DUMP at 9.05 p.m.

27.5.16. - Trenches

Same working parties as usual.

28.5.16. - Trenches

Same working parties as usual.

No. 406412 Pte W.G. TORR, Wounded by shrapnel in the Kidneys at ZILLEBEKE.

29.5.16. - Trenches

Same working parties as usual.

No. 477266 Pte T.J. DRISCOLL wounded G.S. Left leg above knee 11.00 p.m. whilst at working party at GAP

No. 478555 Pte J. SCOTT Wounded right eye, Shell Fire

7 O.R. returned to duty from Base Hospital. 43 O.R. Reinforcements arrived this date and remained with Transport.

29.5.16. - Trenches

No. 477311 Pte D. FORREST Wounded G.S. Left leg above knee.

30.5.16. - Trenches

Weather wet, cleared up towards evening. R.C.R. Relieved 42ND Can Battalion in HOOGE Section, Order No. 12 attached. Relief completed 12.45 a.m. 31.5.16. Situation quiet. Men did not take their packs into trenches owing to the cramped conditions. This Section is in the most battered condition of any the Regiment has yet been in. Front line is a succession of Posts, some partially connected and other not connected at all. Wounded cannot be taken out of front line or Reserve line in the daytime. Distribution of Coys as follows:-

P.P.C.L.I. on our right K.O.S.L.I. on our left

31.5.16. - Trenches

Weather Fine. Situation quiet. Wind N.W.

Lieut. Col.
Commanding The Royal Canadian Regiment.

Appendix 1. R.C.R. O.O. 8 dated 5.5.16 R.C.R. will relieve 42ND Cdn. Bn. on night 7TH/8TH May.

Appendix 2. R.C.R. O.O. 9 dated 11.5.16 Inter-company reliefs to be carried out on night of 11TH May, 1916.

Appendix 3. R.C.R. O.O. 10 dated 14.5.16 R.C.R. will be relieved by 60TH Cdn. Bn. on night of 15th/16TH May, 1916.

Appendix 4. R.C.R. O.O. 11 dated 22.5.16 7TH C.I.B. will relieve 8TH C.I.B. in left sector on night 22nd/23RD May, 1916. R.C.R. will move into brigade reserve.

Appendix 5. R.C.R. O.O. 12 dated ? [sic] R.C.R. will relieve 42ND Cdn. Bn. in the line on night 30TH/31ST May.

Appendix 6. R.C.R. O.O. 13 dated 3.6.16 Inter-company reliefs of R.C.R. to be carried out on night of June 3RD, 1916.

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