The less than satisfactory performance of the 1st Battalion at the Hohenzollern Redoubt earlier in the month, along with the failure of the regular 28th Division (of which they were part) in taking the position, gave the Commander in Chief, Sir John French, cause for concern.
It was clear that their fighting efficiency had been greatly impaired. Across all Brigades, they had suffered a great loss of men in the lead-up to their being sent to the Loos Sector, and these losses robbed the Division of expertise and experience that were greatly needed in the day of their attacks at Loos.
The losses that 1st Suffolk had suffered in the months before, had been multiplied over the entire Division. Massive attacks such as those at Frezenberg and later Bellewaarde had decimated almost all of the Battalions in the Division, of its older, regular, experienced troops. There were no more reservists left at home to fill its ranks, just the last of the Special Reserve and the first of the New Army men. The Division had held the line, but it would the Battalions of the New Armies that would carry on the offensive from here. Thus it was planned by the power that be, that the Division would be transferred away from the Western Front to one of the war's great backwaters; Macedonia.
Thus on the 21st October, the Battalion received it marching orders to leave the French Army billets they had occupied in Bethune and proceed to the nearest rail head at Fouquereuil, where they would entrain for the journey to Marseilles.
They wound not return to the Western Front.
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.