In late 1914, following the Retreat from Mons and the Battles of the Marne and the Aisne, the German and Franco-British armies tried to outflank one another in the so-called ‘Race to the Sea’. A series of head-on clashes followed as the two mighty armies flung themselves at one another. The two most notable of these battles were at Armentieres, in October 1914, and further north at Ypres in October/November 1914. During the Battle of Armentieres the 1st battalion, which had only recently arrived in France, successfully held the line in the Bois Grenier – Rue du Bois sector, against repeated German assaults.
A rare photograph showing the view from front line positions near Armentieres. The ruined buildings provided cover for enemy soldiers, whilst the chimneys were used for observation and sniping