As their counterparts in Europe, proceeded once more to lock horns with the Hun at Third Ypres, far away in the Holy Land, 1/5th Suffolk, were continuing their live-and -let-live stalemate in the he desert with the Turks.
Most of July had been spent in their positions along Sampson's Ridge just south of the town of Gaza. The Turk had in this period, been quite quiet and it was noted that seldom did he return any fire inflicted upon him, unless it was absolutely necessary.
The Turkish line,which encircles the souther perimeter of the town of Gaza had like at Ypres, a salient in its middle around a small natural mound, known as 'Umbrella Hill'. Although the two front lines were over 1500 yards apart across, dry arid desert, at Umbrella Hill, they were just 450 yards apart. An effort was therefore made to capture the hill and push the Allied line towards Gaza.
On 19th July, 1/5th Bedfords; part of the Suffolk's Brigade, made an unsuccessful attack upon hill, and on the 27th they tried again and were successful.
In the days following the successful capture of Umbrella Hill, the first Divisional signs were introduced for vehicles and 'other moveable property'. The choice of a suitable sign presented many problems and many offered suggestions caused offence. "The suggestion of a March hare" wrote the Battalion History in 1923 "for the 54th Division was turned down as "gross insubordination," and an umbrella blown inside out was eventually selected ; a delicate compliment to the Battalion that had so thoroughly "put the wind up Umbrella Hill."
By the 2nd August, the Battalion were on the coast at North Belah, where they enjoyed five days of unlimited bathing with no need to Stand To. They had spent the previous five weeks in the trenches and were glad of the rest. Whilst here, they were issued with their new Brigade patch worn on the upper arm of the khaki drill jacket. For 163 Brigade, of which 1/5th Suffolk was part, the choice of a red and yellow patch was most appropriate, those being the colours of the Suffolk Regiment. Officers too, were issued a third patch for wear on the sun helmet.
With their new posting, would come more training; training for another campaign in the months ahead.
Welcome to our online 'blog' charting the history of the many Battalions of the Suffolk Regiment and the part they played in the Great War.
Starting back in March 2014, we have recorded the events of 100 years ago on the centenary of their happening.
Keep checking back to see how the Great War is progressing for the men of the Suffolk Regiment.