Newport – Mametz Wood – Gavin Davies

Our speaker is a member of the Western Front Association and, in particular, of the South Wales Branch,
which raised the money for the construction and later refurbishment of the Dragon Memorial at Mametz Wood to the 38th (Welsh) Division.

He described in great detail the complex events during the horrific battle at Mametz Wood in July 1916 during the First Battle of the Somme when the Welsh Division advanced against machine gun emplacements ensconced in the woods. The 38th Division had been created with 20,000 Welsh volunteers but was totally inexperienced. The attack was against a highly experienced German Lehr Division, already under the protection of the woods. Finally the objective was achieved through hand to hand fighting in the woods. The cost was some 565 Welsh soldiers certainly killed and about 3500 injured.

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