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The Battle of Arras – April-May 1917

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The Battle of Arras – April-May 1917. Aim of the battle was to divert German attention away from a major French attach at Aisne (to the south). In this aim the battle was successful.

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the battle of arras april may 1917
The Battle of Arras – April-May 1917
  • Aim of the battle was to divert German attention away from a major French attach at Aisne (to the south).
  • In this aim the battle was successful.
  • Much ground was taken from the Germans. This was particularly impressive as the Germans held the high ground in places such as Vimy Ridge.
  • Many new tactics were battle-tested at Arras, including the creeping barrage, counter-battery fire and mining and tunnelling. In addition, the RFC was used extensively for spotting and bombing.
  • The battle did not, however, ‘end the war in 48 hours’, as it was hoped and the casualty number s were high – 150,000
the battle of arras april may 19171
The Battle of Arras – April-May 1917
  • 44 Scottish Battalions involved
  • 7 Canadian Scots-named Battalions (e.g. the Gordon Highlanders of Canada)
  • Largest concentration of Scots that fought together in one battle.
  • As at Loos, 1/3 of overall casualties were Scots.
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The memorial to the Canadian soldiers who took Vimy Ridge from the Germans during the Battle of Arras, 1917