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The Battle of the Somme

Battle Name : The Battle of the Somme

Date(s) : 01 July 1916 - 19 November 1916

Part of : First World War , The Western Front ,

Outcome : A victory for Allied Forces [British, Dominion & French] over German 2nd Army

Type of battle : Land


After the initial 7 day [start 24 June] bombardment of the German lines the battle consisted in the main of a series of attacks, almost on a daily basis, by British, Commonwealth and French forces on established German positions to the north of the river Somme. German counter-attacks often took back all or most of the gains made. The final British gain was a strip of land of an average depth of six miles along twenty miles of the front. Manpower losses on both sides were significant and about even. On the 15th September this battle saw the first use/misuse of tanks.


The battlefield centred about 90 miles north of Paris on the Franco-Belgian border between the towns of Albert and Baupaume. The front ran roughly northwest to southeast for a distance of approximately twenty miles. (France)

Also includes the following

More details


1-13 The Battle of Albert
1 Capture of Montauban
1 Capture of mametz
2 Capture of Fricourt
2-4 Capture of La Boiselle
3 Capture of Bernafay Wood
7-11 Mametz Wood
10 Capture of Contalmaison
7-13 Fight for Trones Wood
14-29 Capture of Longueval
15-3 Sept. Battle of Delville Wood
17 Capture of Ovillers
20-30 Attacks on High Wood
23-13 Sept Battle of Pozieres Ridge
27-28 Capture of Delville Wood

6-3 Sept Fighting for Mouquet Farm
8-9 Fighting for Waterlot Farm, Guillemont

3-6 Battle of Guillemont
9 Battle of Ginchy
14 Capture of the Wonder Work
15-22 Battle of Flers-Courcelette [First use of Tanks]
15 Capture of Flers
15 Capture of High Wood
15 Capture of Martinpuch
25-28 Battle of Morval
25 Capture of Lesboeufs
26 Battle of Thiepval Ridge
26 Capture of Combles
26 Capture of Grid Trench and Gueudecourt
26 Capture of Mouquet Farm

1-18 Battle of Transloy Ridge
1- 11 Nov. Battle of the Ancre Heights
1-3 Capture of Eaucourt l'Abbaye
7 Capture of Le Sars
7-5 Nov. Attack on the Butte de Warlencourt
9 Capture of Stuff Redoubt
14 Capture of Schwaben Redoubt
21 Capture of Regina Trench and Redoubt
21 Capture of Stuff Trench

3-11 Battle of the Ancre
13 Capture of Beaumont Hamel
14 Capture of Beaucourt
13-18 Battle of the Ancre.

This campaign ended in mud, cold and exhaustion for both sides. Overall an Allied gain of about 120 square miles for over 600,000 casulties, which is about 5,200 for each square mile. A German staff officer described the Somme as 'the muddy grave of the German field army.'

Casualty figures

Allied Forces [British, Dominion & French]

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German 2nd Army

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