Shrapnel bursting over reserve trench in Canadian lines.

Shrapnel bursting over reserve trench in Canadian lines.

Thiepval Ridge was a typical Somme attack, in that there was little room at the rear to manoeuvre and the objectives were aspirational at best. The Thiepval position was only the beginning of the Regina Trench system, but the plan put in place for 26 September was to take the system as a whole. The battalions storming the ridge were caught almost immediately in German counter-fire, as the artillery could only successfully suppress the first lines, leaving the German rear positions fully operational. The Canadian divisions struggled all day to hold the captured trenches, Kenora, Hessian, and the Zollern Graben, under continual counterattack until the attack was called off for the night. By the next morning, the Germans had retreated from the Thiepval position to Regina Trench, and all Allied efforts to attack were called off until October.

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