Item 01: Ellis Ashmead-Bartlett diary, 1915-1917 - Page 54
prisoners. They maintain, and I think quite correctly, that the Asiatic Coast ought also to be held, and that otherwise the Turks would place guns in position there and would shell both W and V beaches. They had already planted some shells near the French headquarters, and the French estimate of what they would do in the future subsequtesly turned out to be perfectly correct. The French at this time had their headquarters in the old castle of Suddul Bahr with two batteries of their own 75 s right alongside them, and also they were constantly exposed to the shell fire of the Turkish guns. The result of this was that the Staff got little or no rest and were utterly exhausted, and in a bad humour. The first person killed had been D'Amade's chef, by a shrapnel shell, as he was engaged in preparing dinner.
I should have said that on the night of Sunday May 2nd, I went on board the "Queen Elizabeth" with some despatches, and stayed to dinner. Afterwards Lieutenant Commander Ramsay said to me "Will you come ashore, and take a walk around, as I wish to go to the French Headquarters." I said I would, and we landed in total darkness on W Beach. We first made our way through our lines to Hunter Westonfs Headquarters, but all the Staff seemed to have gone to bed, so we left them and walked through the lines towards V beach. We had not gone, very far before we were challenged by a sentry, but we were allowed to pass. Our real trouble commenced when we got among the French, who regarded us with the utmost suspicion,wondering what we were doing wandering about in the middle of the night, and neither of us had any sort of a pass. We satisfied one group that we were all right, and asked to be directed to D'Amade's headquarters, but we missed our way in the darkness, and