25th County of London Cyclist Battalion
The London Regiment

  

Diary of Reginald Cuthbert GRIFFITHS
 

Jullundur . 
May 22nd.
Orders received at 4 p.m. to move in 24 hours. No excitement - more or less expected. Plenty of work.
May 23rd. Left Jullundur 10 p.m.
May 24th. Arrived Mari Indus 3.20 p.m. Crossed the Indus and bivied at Kalabagh. Crossed part of Sind desert in a sand storm.
May 25th. Left Kalabagh 1.15 p.m. - most uncomfortable journey - Stopped at Pezu for night.
May 26th. Arrived Tank Station 10 am. arrived camp 1 p-.m. May 27th to Completing P & M Books. Plenty of work.
June 6th.  
June 7th. Marched out from Tank 1 a.m. arrived Zam Post about 4 a.m. Ghurka scrap - Rotten sight with dead badly mutilated - Continued march to Khirgi. after Mahsuds had fled. Arrived Khirgi 2 p.m. Chronic March - Sgt. James died exhaustion. Several others left behind in bad state.
June 8th. Left Khirgi 7 a.m. arrived Jandola 12 noon.
June 9th & 10th. Quiet.
June 11th. Mahsuds surrounded camp 1 a.m. and opened fire - Luckily no casualties.
June 12th. Went out to meet the Mahsuds who cleared off as we advanced, but on our retirement to camp they swarmed after us. Our first scrap – too much to thin. about to feel funky - Everybody quite cool - When crossing the river fellows started drinking the water despite the fact that bullets were whistling overhead and dropping all around - 2 wounded in "D" Company - G.O.C. said Ldns. didn't take things seriously enough.
June 13th. Went out road making.
June 14th. Quiet.
June 15th. Left Jandola 8 a.m. arrived Haidari Kach 6 p.m. Tiring march - No resistance from enemy. Crossed river 68 times - Burned crops on way.
June 16th. Strafed and burned Manzal village.
June 17th. Making roads - Capt.G. down.
June 18th. 43rd and 45th 3rigades move to 3urwand. Left H.K. 6 a.m. Long and tiring march - fighting all the way. Leave river 2 miles from H.K. No water in water bottles or packals - Sniped by enemy all night - Hot time - Sikh piquet surrounded and attacked all night - Held out till relieved in morning when their casualties were about 20 to. 25 out of 30.
June 19th. Left camp 6.30 a.m. for Ispana Baghza - Still no water - "C" and "D" Companies attacked two hills. 1 killed (Stone) 3 wounded (Sgt. Blott, Salter, Brown 0.H.1 Ghurkas who came up afterwards 2 wounded Mahendral Regiment on adjoining hills had rough time and were charged by enemy who were dispersed by machine guns and bombs from aeroplanes - Major Hart killed. Mahsuds attempted to cut us off when we evacuated our hill but were seen from camp and 2 companies of Ghurkas were sent out to our relief. Did not know of this till our return to camp.
June 21st. Midnight attack on camp - Enemy repulsed - very exciting - Heavy sniping remainder of night - In morning "C" Company relieved B who have been hard pressed. Captain Paget severely wounded - Burtenshaw killed and 4 others wounded.
June 22nd. Left Camp 5.30 a.m. for strafe on village (name not known) Heavy sniping - no other resistance - Return camp 3 p.m. whacked - Quiet night.
June 23rd. Left Camp 7.30 a.m. Further advance up valley - Londons in main body - Plenty of water - Burning villages all the way - Finished up by looting village near camp. "B" Company rough time on piquet - 6 casualties. Gaylor killed. Gee died of :rounds afterwards.
June 24th. Battn. in camp - Remainder of force go out and give energy rough packet - one party caught in nullah and practically wiped out - At night our Company relieved "3" on piquet. One incident which put the wind up us - otherwise quiet.
June 25th. Mahsuds believed to be giving in - Left camp p.30 a.m. for march back to Ispana Baghza. arrived 6 p.m. Looted grain on the way - good night-no trouble.
June 26th. Several tribes ask for peace - quiet night.
June 27th. Rest - On piquet at night.
June 28th. Packing up for move tomorrow - Left camp 5.30 a.m. for move up valley - arrived at Boji Khel 5.30 p.m.
June 29th. Rest.
June 30th. On piquet for convoy - cushy.
July 1st. do. do.
July 2nd. Mahsud peace conference.
July 3rd. Very hot.
July 5th. Piquetting for convoy 15 miles (knocked)
July 6th. Mail bag "pinched" by Mahsuds - Quiet time.
July 7th. Waiting for Mahsuds to arrive with riles.
July 8th. Peace negotiations broken off.
July 9th. Some rifles handed in - Still waiting for Mahsuds to decide for peace. Time limit extended.
July 10th. Jugah down at river. PEACE.
July 11th. Packing up for move.
July 12th. Left Boji Khel at 7 a.m. Arrived Mangal 4 p.m. knocked. Pouring in rain all day - only had shirt on - soaked thro’.
July 13th. G.O.C. proceeded to Sarwekai to arrange final terms - Piquetting - Sack in camp 2 p.m.
July 14th to 29th. Drill and piquetting duty.
July 30th. Heat commenced to get us down at about this time - nearly everyone had diarrhea - I caught it at Boji Khel and had it for 2 months straight off.
July 31st & August  1st. Drill and Piquetting.
August 2nd. Poured with rain all day - Piquetted for incoming convoy which was delayed by floods - out from 5 a.m. to 7.15 P.M. - Rum issue.
 
August 3rd to 5th. Drill and piquetting.
August 6th. Piquetting - Rain all day - River in flood - out from 6 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. "A" Company lose two mules in river overtaken by spate.
August 7th to 9th. Drill fatigues and piquetting - On 9th orders to move.
August 10th. Packing up.
August 11th. Leave Manzal 5.15 a.m. arrived Jandola 11 a.m. (Easy day)
August 12th. Left Jandola 6 a.m. arrived Zam Post 4 p.m. 182 miles - Frightfully hot - Everyone knocked to the wide.
August 13th. Left Zam Post for Tank - Cheers! the last stage Batt, to leave in 3 trains, 1st train 6.40 p.m. postponed owing to line being washed away further up.
August 14th. 3.30 a.m. Dam bursts and camp in middle of raging torrent 3 and 4 feet deep - made for trains and spent rest of night there - most of our kit lost and ruined by flood. Laid out salvaged kit to dry on platform - some sight!
August 15th. Line being repaired - Stink from flooded land frightful.
August 16th. Left Tank about 7 p.m.
August 17th. Arrived Kalabagh and crossed Indus to Mari Indus about 8 a.m. good rest camp and Y.M.C.A. Civilisation again : Left Mari Indus 9.45 p.m.
August 18th. Arrived Jullundur barracks 5 p.m. "HOME" again! A fine welcome. Wouldn't go through past 3 months again for all the money in the world.
 

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