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Key dates over February 1917

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Lives lost on this day: 16

25th February 1917 - German forces facing the Somme withdraw around 40km (25 miles) to new, strongly prepared defences known to the British as the Hindenburg Line. The withdrawal continues until 5 April.

Rolling casualty count: 5538

War Front: 2nd Batt: There was little activity during the day. A Coy sent up parties to do special work during the night. Report received that the Germans had evacuated the line opposite us and instructions were sent to the effect that we were to put out strong patrols and, if possible, occupy the German line.

4th Batt: Batt at Saillisel in the trenches, a difficult line to visit. Men were set the task of digging a communication trench to the right of Green Howard Trench, which was taped out first. Hardly had work begun when orders were received for X Coy to send out a patrol of 3 Officers and 50 other ranks to ascertain how strongly the German line was held as it was suspected that there was a gradual retirement of the enemy.

2/7th Batt :Batt relieved by 2/6th Warwicks Reg in Reserve dug-outs and Parison dug-outs. Batt took over billets at Harbonnieres.

9th Batt: The advance began and everywhere we saw the signs of the Turks' hurried fight-abandoned vehicles, weapons etc. Further on Batt, led by Major Gibbon, met with heavy fire.. The enemy abandoned their trenches before our bayonets could close on them.. Young Capt Bidlake, only 19 years old, died in the advance.

10th Batt: I NCO and 20 men were detonating bombs.

Home Front: To the Editor - An Appeal to Ex-Ploughmen and their Employers – Sir, Ploughmen are urgently needed. For the skill which they alone possess there is no substitute. The time that skill is required is “Now”. Admirable as are many of the schemes for supplementing the supply of labour on the land, they do little to help the country over the really critical operation – the getting of the seed in to the ground. Much volunteer work is already in sight. It is not so with ploughing. I therefore appeal to all men who have skill in ploughing to offer their services at once and to their employers to release them for that work from now until the end of April.

Decorations for Local Nurses – The Royal Red Cross decoration has been awarded in recognition of war services to Miss M Herbert, Matron Worcester Infirmary, Miss R Elliott, Sister Worcester Infirmary, Miss A Kerslake, Matron, T.F.N.S., 1st Southern General Hospital, Edgbaston

Information researched by The Worcestershire World War 100 team