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Robert Dallas Quin


Larbert

1925 Private

‘C’ Company, 4th Battalion, Gordon Highlanders, 8th Infantry Brigade, 3rd Division

Age: 20

Date of Death: 25.9.15

Buried: Menin Gate Memorial Panel 38

Family history: Son of Isabella Quin, Fitzpatrick's Buildings, Stirling Road, Larbert & of the late James Quin, Stonehaven. Brother of James Quin. Before enlisting in 1914, Robert was living and working in Aberdeen employed as a cooper by his uncle. He landed in France on 19 February 1915.

The action leading to his death

On 25 September 1915, the British launched a major offensive south of the Salient at Loos. In order to prevent the Germans from sending any reinforcements to the battle area three diversionary attacks were made in other areas the most important being the Second Attack on Bellewaarde. On 30 July the British had lost Hooge when the Germans attacked the line with flamethrowers, first used against the French at Verdun, and pushed the British back down the ridge for a distance of some 500 yards to the edge of Zouave Wood/Sanctuary Wood. On the 9th August the 6th Division had regained the lost ground and the line was now established from the Hooge Chateau stables to the west.

(Linesman Map Square 13 is the area of attack by the 4th Battalion)


The attack on 25 September at Bellewaarde was carried out by the 3rd Division astride the Menin Road and by a brigade of the 14th Division on their left. The British bombardment of the German trenches began at 3.50am and the Germans quickly replied causing casualties amongst the battalion. At 4.10am as the British barrage lifted off the German front line trenches half of ‘B’, ‘D’ and ‘C’ company’s crawled forward with the remainder of the battalion following on from the British second line. The German wire was undamaged and the royal Engineers had to cut holes in it with Bangalore torpedoes. Now through the wire the elements of the battalion managed to reach the German third line however, they were coming under increasingly heavy shell fire from the Germans and requesting reinforcements. All the time the British reserve trenches were under fire from Whizz bangs which were hindering supply of bombs, shovels and sand bags to the front line. The men of the battalion who had reached the German third line were now cut off and all were reported as missing. At midday the Germans counterattacked along the trenches and the open and forced the battalion back to their start lines. The aim of the, to pin down large numbers of German troops who may have been moved to Loos, had failed. The Germans had been able to contain the attack with local reserves which would not have been moved south in any case.

The battalion casualties were, 2 officers killed, 7 wounded and 6 missing. Other ranks 14 killed, 146 wounded and 147 missing.

Medals Awarded

1915 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal


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