WW1. The Battle of Loos was the largest British offensive of 1915 on the Western Front. The British attackers suffered nearly 60,000 casualties, 20,000 of whom have no known grave. William Noel Hodgson, known to his regiment as 'Smiler', was among those who fought at Loos. In the aftermath he wrote 'Back to Rest'. Less than a year later, July 1, 1916, on the first day of the Somme offensive, together with 158 men of his Battalion, Hodgson was killed, being shot through the throat.
For Canadian infantry, their first engagement against the German Army came during the attack near Ypres called 'The Second Battle of Ypres', where the Germans first used poison gas on the Western Front.
Cleaning up German trenches at St Pierre Divion. In the foreground a group of British soldiers are sorting through equipment abandoned in the trenches by the Germans when St Pierre Divion was captured. - via bytesdaily
For much of the small French village of Vignacourt was always behind the front lines as a staging point, casualty clearing station and recreation area for troops of all nationalities moving up to and then back from the battlefields on the Somme.