Informatie legerdienst

New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Service nummer:
 —  Canterbury Regiment, 1st Bn.  (Laatst gekende eenheid)

Informatie over overlijden

Datum van overlijden:
Plaats van overlijden:
Judge Cross Roads, België
Killed in action (K.I.A.)


Buttes New British Cemetery, Polygon Wood
Plot: Onbekend
Rij: D
Graf: 17

Onderscheidingen en medailles 2

British War Medal
Victory Medal

Points of interest 1

#1 Plaats van overlijden of oorspronkelijke begraafplaats

Mijn verhaal

Serjeant Cecil Dunn served in the Canterbury Regiment 1st Battalion, part of the 1st New Zealand Brigade, of the New Zealand Division.

The Division participate in the Third Battle of Ypres. After the offensive the New Zealand Division held the line in and around Polygon Wood. In early December the Division, along with the Canterbury Regiment 1st Battalion, wanted to improve its positions and tried to take the heights round Polderhoek Chateau. The Division made some gains, suffering heavy casualties, but they did not succeed in capturing the Chateau and the surrounding heights.

The Division’s sector had been slightly altered. It was now too long to be held by one Brigade, and there was no accommodation or shelter for two Brigades, so an extra battalion was attached to each Brigade when it held the line. Reliefs took place on an average of every six days.

On the night of 9th and 10th of December the 1st Canterbury Battalion took over the 2nd Brigade’s center sector called “Judge Cross Roads”, extending from a point opposite Judge Cottage to a point just north of “Joiner’s Rest”.

The new front line system had to fortified, and the Battalions in the line worked on improving their trenches. Except in a few places close up the frontline, there were no communication trenches in the Divisional sector. All the traffic up to the line was confined to a few duck tracks. The Germans were well aware of these tracks, which were frequently shelled. From their positions in Polderhoek Chateau they had an excellent view on the British and New Zealand positions.

At first the muddy terrain round the tracks smothered many shells, greatly reducing the danger. But when it started freezing days before Christmas the terrain hardened. At first this seemed to make lives in the trenches a bit better as the ground became solid. However it did not much add to the discomfort, as the frozen ground increased the danger zone of the shells. Consequently even badly aimed shells could cause casualties to troops using the tracks.

Serjeant Cecil Dunn was mortally wounded in the Judge Cross Roads sector. He possibly fell due to shell fire while holding and improving the frontline. He was buried at Polygon Wood cemetery, Row D, Grave 17.

Bestanden 2

Bronnen 4

"The history of the Canterbury Regiment N.Z.E.F. : 1914-1919", Ferguson D.,Whitcombe and Tombs, 1921, page 219 - 225
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Auckland Cenotaph
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