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[Page 131]

tree stumps. All this country we have just retaken from the Germans. At last we arrived at the Somme with Peronne on the left and made a cautious crossing over the string of three temporary structures which replace the bridges blown up by the enemy at St. Brie. We continued on through Mons-en-Chaussee where 8th F. Amb. have established the A.D.S. and bivouacked in the open near the neighbouring village of St. Gren. Strict orders have been issued that no-one is to enter any fritz dugout nor handle any stuff that he has left behind, so much of it has been mined and he only evacuated the village the previous day. We had only been in the place a few minutes when fritz put over 3 or 4 shells pretty close to us. We had one chap wounded & he was immediately evacuated to Adv. Dressing Station. When shall we see civilisation again? Mons & St. Gren are over 50 kilometres from Amiens.

Wed. 11th Sept.
We stayed 4 days at St. Gren near the A.D.S. doing nothing as reserve Ambulance when the whole Division pulled out for a few days rest. We thought we were going right back near civilisation again but great was our disappointment to learn that we were not even going to cross the Somme. We left the comfortable dugouts we had constructed and marched out in the driving rain yesterday morning back to Le Mesnil on the outskirts of Peronne. Fritz bombing planes are over nearly every night so everyone had to set to work and build dugouts – a rottenly monotonous job but very necessary. The days are now cold, windy & wet and it looks as if winter had commenced. The enemy is still being driven steadily back towards the Hindenberg line which he is now occupying in parts.

Sund. 16th Sept.
There have been quite a number of changes in the Unit during the past few days. Our O.C. is away on leave & so is the senior Major. Another officer has gone to 2nd C.C.S. and a new chap arrived, very decent & one of the boys. New Q.M. & W.O. have come along & our W.O. & a Staff Sgt. have left us for elsewhere. Yesterday a Sergt. & 5 men –

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