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  cap badgePrivate Alexander Robertson

8th (Service) Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment
Service No: 44605

Alexander Robertson grave

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Personal details

Family Information

Son of James Donald Robertson and Helen Wilson Robertson of "Croftnauld," 36 Finlaystone St, Coatbridge. From the 1901 Census - Address - 15d King St, Coatbridge - James D Robertson aged 33, Helen W Robertson aged 23, Alexander Robertson aged 2, James M Robertson aged 7 months.

Born / Resided

Coatbridge / Coatbridge

Died

Killed in Action on the 30/05/1918 at the Battle of the Aisne

Enlisted

Coatbridge

Employed

Union Bank of Scotland, Coatbridge

Age

19 / DOB - -10/07/1898

Buried / Remembered

Soissons Memorial, Aisne, France

Cemetery / Memorial Information

The original British Expeditionary Force crossed the Aisne in August 1914 a few kilometres west of Soissons, and re-crossed it in September a few kilometres east. For the next three and a half years, this part of the front was held by French forces and the city remained within the range of German artillery. At the end of April 1918, five divisions of Commonwealth forces (IX Corps) were posted to the French 6th Army in this sector to rest and refit following the German offensives on the Somme and Lys. Here, at the end of May, they found themselves facing the overwhelming German attack which, despite fierce opposition, pushed the Allies back across the Aisne to the Marne. Having suffered 15,000 fatal casualties, IX Corps was withdrawn from this front in early July, but was replaced by XXII Corps, who took part in the Allied counter attack that had driven back the Germans by early August and recovered the lost ground. The Soissons Memorial commemorates almost 4,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom forces who died during the Battles of the Aisne and the Marne in 1918 and who have no known grave.

Additional Information

The Battalion arrived in France on the 18/07/1915 and were part of the 57th Brigade, 19th (Western) Division. Alexander was Killed in Action at the Battle of the Aisne, 27th May – 6th June 1918 : the (Third) Battle of the Aisne. A small and tired British force, sent to the Chemin des Dames in exchange for fresh French divisions that went north, was struck and virtually destroyed as part of another German offensive, Operation Bluecher. Before the German attack, IX Corps held the sector of front between Bouconville and Berméricourt. From west to east this line drops sharply from the heights of the Chemin des Dames ridge near Craonne, down onto flatter ground through La Ville-au-Bois and Berry-au-Bac on the River Aisne. The German attack succeeded in pushing the Allies across the Aisne and down as far as the Marne at Chateau Thierry, capturing the towns of Soissons and La Fere-en-Tardenois as they did so. At the end of April 1918, five divisions of the Commonwealth forces (IX Corps) were posted to the French 6th Army in this sector to rest and refit following the German offensives on the Somme and Lys. Here, at the end of May, they found themselves facing the overwhelming German attack which, despite fierce opposition, pushed the Allies back across the Aisne to the Marne. Having suffered 15,000 fatal casualties, IX Corps was withdrawn from this front in early July, but was replaced by XXII Corps, who took part in the Allied counterattack that had driven back the Germans by early August and recovered the lost ground. Alexander was an Associate of the Institute of Bankers. He was formerly with the Devonshire Regiment (68340). He is also remembered on the Coatbridge Technical College and Gartsherrie Churches Rolls of Honour. See photos for Alexander's Medal Index Card, his Army Register of Soldiers Effects, his Service Medal and Award Rolls, his CWGC Grave Registration, his name on the Soissons Memorial Panel List, his name on the Soissons Memorial x 2, his former Regiment the Devonshire Regiments Cap Badge, the Gloucestershire Regiments Cap Badge and the morning of the first day of the Battle of the Chemin des Dames, 27 May 1918. German troops crossing a canal and awaiting orders to continue the advance.

Photos
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