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Fighting in the Trenches Learning Resources
Open Warfare This photograph shows men of the 1st Battalion, Middlesex Regiment, 19th Brigade, coming under shrapnel fire from German artillery during the Battle of the Marne on 8 September The high number of casualties suffered on all fronts during 1914 came as a huge shock to everyone involved in the First World War. © IWM (Q 51489)
Trench Warfare The terrible casualties sustained in open warfare meant that trench warfare was introduced very quickly. Trenches provided a very efficient way for soldiers to protect themselves against heavy firepower and within four months, soldiers on all fronts had begun digging trenches. This photograph shows French infantry manning a forward line of trenches in Lorraine during January 1915 © IWM (Q 53620)
The British Army on the Western Front Although trenches protected soldiers in them they also led to a state of deadlock. Trench systems developed significantly over the course of the war. This photograph was taken in 1917 and shows a sentry from the Lancashire Fusiliers looking through a box periscope to observe No Man’s Land and avoid being seen himself. © IWM (Q 4654)
Trench Raids The first Trench Raids took place in 1914 and were seen as a good way of maintaining an ‘offensive spirit’ during the stalemate of trench warfare. During trench raids, soldiers would aim to kill the enemy, take prisoners and gather information. Soldiers carried specialised weapons, like knives and knuckledusters, during these raids, but also improvised weapons like this trench club. It was made and used in 1915, by Private Harold Startin of the 1st Leicestershire Regiment. It is made from an entrenching tool handle fitted with a roughly cast lead head and a cord wrist strap. © IWM (WEA 2160)
Webley.455 Mark 6 (VI military) Service revolvers were initially only carried by officers, but as the war progressed they were issued more widely. The Webley was the standard British service revolver during the First World War, they were robust and powerful weapons and remained in use until This revolver belonged to 2nd Lieutenant J R R Tolkien who went on to write The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Tolkien joined the Lancashire Fusiliers in 1915 and went on to serve in the front line trenches of the Somme. The impact of the Battle remained with him for the rest of his life and its influence can be clearly seen in his unique mythological world and stories. © IWM (FIR 11492)
Heavy Artillery by Colin Gill With the development of trench warfare, increasingly large artillery was developed to fire high explosive shells and smash enemy trenches, like this battery of 9.2 inch howitzers. The majority of casualties on the Western Front were caused by artillery shells, explosions and shrapnel. © IWM (Art.IWM ART 2274)
25 cm Minenwerfer (Heavy Trench Mortar, early short pattern) The German ‘Minenwerfer’ terrified Allied soldiers. It fired heavy bombs which could be seen slowly tumbling from the sky. When they struck, they demolished or buried everything around them. This particular mortar was captured by the 31st (Alberta) Battalion, 2nd Canadian Division, during the fighting for Vimy Ridge, 9th April © IWM (ORD 52)
A Shell Burst The sustained use of artillery not only led to heavy casualties, but also other kinds of trauma, and it was during the First World War that psychological trauma or ‘shell shock’ was first recognised as an effect of modern warfare. This photograph shows a shell bursting within ten yards of the photographer during the Battle of Passchendaele on 23 September © IWM (Q 2890)
Battle of the Somme Artillery bombardments were designed to destroy enemy guns, cut through dense barbed wire and blast men from the trenches. Often, however, they did not succeed in these objectives. On 24 June British guns began a week long bombardment to smash German defences on the Somme before the infantry attacked. Many of the shells they fired, however, were duds and when the infantry advanced it soon became clear that the artillery bombardment had failed. German troops emerged and gunned down advancing British infantry, killing 20,000 on 1 July alone. © IWM (Q 4593)
Tunnelling and mines Tunnelling was used by both sides to try and dig beneath enemy trenches and lay large volumes of explosives. Tunnellers faced many dangers including the use of poison gas, hand-to-hand combat with enemy tunnellers and the threat of being buried alive. This image shows a mine exploding underneath the German front line positions at Hawthorn Redoubt. It was detonated 10 minutes before the first day of the Battle of the Somme, 1 July With 45,000 pounds of explosives, the mine caused a crater 130 feet across by 58 feet deep. © IWM (Q 754)
The Vickers Machine Gun The Vickers machine gun was first used by the British Army in 1912 and during the First World War they became central to British infantry tactics. From October 1915 onwards they came under the control of a new unit called the Machine Gun Corps, which developed sophisticated new tactics for the Vickers. They grouped guns together to fire barrages – often shooting over the heads of friendly troops. British soldiers soon found the rush of machine-gun bullets passing overhead comforting rather than frightening. © IWM (FIR 8100)
Body Armour: This photograph shows a British soldier trying on a suit of German body armour. Soft uniforms offered very little protection against the dangers of trench warfare and thousands of men died as a result of wounds that they might otherwise have survived if they had worn better protective personal equipment. Body armour was mainly used on an individual basis and was never universally issued by the army, because if it was thick enough to be effective, it stopped the wearer from moving freely. © IWM (Q 2733)
Live and let live On rare occasions, unofficial truces would occur between trenches. This image shows British and German soldiers during the infamous ‘Christmas Truce’, which was widespread but not total across the Western Front, on Christmas Day Although instances such as this were rare, in quieter spots on the front, the armies were known to break from the intensity of continuous fighting in order to repair trenches or collect dead and wounded soldiers. © IWM (Q 11745)
The Menin Road by Paul Nash Fighting in and around the trenches was often a terrifying experience as illustrated in this painting by Paul Nash. It shows a devastated battlefield pocked with rain-filled shell-holes, flooded trenches and shattered trees. The foreground is filled with concrete blocks, barbed wire and corrugated iron, while columns of mud from artillery fire rise up in the background. © IWM (Art.IWM ART 2242)
Fighting in the Trenches Learning Resources
Trench Warfare Learning Objective: To understand what trench warfare was and why a stalemate was reached.
BBC News School Report: The Western Front Learning Resources.
Land Battles The CEF in Battle. WW1 Was fought from July 28, 1914 to Nov 11, 1918 Italy Was supposed to join the war with central powers in August 1914.
Trench Battles 1916 The Battle of Verdun and the Battle of the Somme.
Western Front Battles Canadian History 1201 To accompany “Spotlight Canada” Pages
August 3, Germany started World War I by invading neutral Belgium using the Schlieffen Plan. The Belgians surprised the Germans by fighting back.
Canadians In Battle. Ypres ~ April 1915 The 1st Canadian Division had just arrived at the front and were moved to Ypres Salient, in front of the City.
WWI. By late 1914 both sides had constructed defensive trenches. ~600 miles of trenches on the Western Front From late 1914 to 1918, most of the fighting.
World War I: Battles & Technology EQ: How was WWI fought?
Ypres. Dates and Locations - 2 nd battle, April in and around the Belgian city of Ypres in Flanders.
Major Battles of WWI Somme, Passchendaele, Vimy Ridge, Ypres, 100 Day Campaign.
What were the causes of WWI? What are the cons of alliances? Why did the US get pulled into WWI? How did Wilson convince Americans that the war was a good.
Ypres The Somme Vimy Ridge Passchendaele. The Canadian Division reached the Western Front in February 1915 2 months later, the Germans began using.
Trench Warfare. Background After the Battle of the Marne in September 1914, the German army were forced to retreat. They had failed in their objective.
WWI Trench Warfare. Stalemate in the Trenches When war began most people assumed it would be over in a few months. The German army invaded Belgium with.
Why was the Battle of the Somme a disaster? L/O – To identify, link and make a judgement about the causes of the disaster.
THE BATTLE OF SOMME Wave upon wave of troops were ordered across open fields. They were almost immediately mowed down by German machine guns. 85% of the.
Main Battles of World War One Canada’s Involvement in the Great War
2500 Canadian women joined medical and field ambulance corps during the war; some served as nurses during the war. Canadian nurses were called “ Bluebirds.
Scots at War The Somme After Loos After the Battle of Loos, Scotland would never again provide half the number of infantrymen for a massed attack.
By Rían. What started out as a local European war soon became a global war that lasted from World War I was the first war that involved nations.
Living in the Trenches Learning Resources. The images in this resource can be freely used for non-commercial use in your classroom subject to the terms.
A Bloody Conflict. Germanys Plan Fails Germany had long been prepared for war against France and Russia. It immediately launched a massive invasion of.
Events of WWI. 3 Important Battle Sites The Somme Verdun Ypres.
Think back over last lesson Why did the attack on the Somme fail?
World War I: 12.2 Part 1 Stalemate. Initial Expectations Many leaders thought the war would be over quickly & include quick, decisive victories 1 st Battle.
VIMY RIDGE – THE MAKING OF CANADA. Vimy’s History prior to 1917 The German fortifications at Vimy: – three layers of trenches – barbed wire – deep tunnels.
Battle of Somme July 1 st 1916 – November 1916 Passchendaele The Battle of Somme is one of the most bloodiest battles—which resulted into the death.
WORLD WAR 1 Grade 8 Na Young. What is world war 1? The First World War, originally called the Great War, raged from 1914 to Mostly fought in western.
BATTLE OF VIMY RIDGE CREATED BY OLEH KRYVULYAK. DAMAGE OF WWI - W W 1 is famous for the extensive damage and terrible failures.
BATTLES OF WORLD WAR I. Fact or Factoid? WW1 was the bloodiest war in history at the time that it started.
Why the Somme The French Army was bigger than the British Army and as the war was being fought in France the British usually did as the French wanted.
The main weapon used by German soldiers in the trenches was the bolt-action rifle. 15 rounds could be fired in a minute and a person 1,400 metres away.
Somme Battle Plan: You have… Study the Source. What does it suggest happened at the Battle of the Somme? From the RGA 69 th Siege Battery Study the Source.
As WWI began, Germany invaded Belgium on their way to France In Belgium the Allies stopped them Germans couldn’t continue, but Allies couldn’t push.
War Front Element: Describe conditions on the war front for soldiers; include the Battle of Verdun. Vocabulary: Battle of Verdun, eastern front, trench.
Trench Warfare S4. Battle of Ypres German advance through Belgium in 1914 was halted at Ypres in Flanders. The territory became known as The.
THE NATURE OF WAR ON LAND. 1. What were the solutions to the stalemate? Beside each solution, describe problems encountered with it. 2. What were the.
Recruitment and Conscription Learning Resources. The images in this resource can be freely used for non-commercial use in your classroom subject to the.
Objective: To examine the horrors of trench warfare.
Playing movies KEY STAGE 3 and 4 National Curriculum History THE FIRST WORLD WAR INTERACTIVE Why did Britain and her allies defeat Germany in.
Remember at the outbreak of W.W.I, Newfoundland was not a part of Canada. Still a part of the British Empire. Some Newfoundlanders did join the C.E.F.
Canadians at War The Canadian Army arrived in France as amateurs. Four years of intense fighting transformed them into the best little army on the Western.
Was General Haig the Butcher of the Somme? Miss Boughey –
WEAPONRY IN WORLD WAR ONE TO UNDERSTAND THE ROLE OF WOMEN AND CHILDREN IN WORLD WAR ONE.
Was General Haig… the Butcher of the Somme ?. The Battle of the Somme started on July 1st 1916 and lasted until November The British army launched.
Canadian History 1201 November 18, Opening Moves In August 1914, Germany attempted to quickly knock France out of the war & capture Paris before.
World War I – Trench Warfare People expected World War I to be quick- they had a great deal of confidence in their countries. People expected World War.
Aims: Identify the preparation necessary before a ‘big push’. Examine the dangers faced by soldiers after they had gone ‘over the top’.
What was the fighting like on the Western Front? L/O – To identify the main changes in warfare brought about by the First World War.
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