Colonel's Gallipoli Diary

Colonel Alexander Weston Jarvis, Commanding Officer of the 3rd County of London Yeomanry, writing his diary in his trench at Suvla Bay, Gallipoli, 1915

October 1 - 9

Oct 4  A tremendous strafe at 9 am commencing with a heavy bombardment all along the line. The communication trench between my dug out and Chocolate Hill receiving a great deal of attention. This was followed by very heavy rifle fire which lasted for 50 minutes, the bullets again streaming over my parapets 

Oct 6  Received my British Warm and woolly waistcoat from Egypt – glad to see them as the weather may soon become colder. At present it is lovely and quite hot. Had 2 men of the City Yeomanry killed last night. They were out on a listening post covering the engineers who were wiring part of our line, most unlucky 

Oct 7  Fairly quiet day with the exception of the usual shelling which went on at intervals. Walked over to the Reserve line in the afternoon to see what the arrangements for our move to that area tomorrow night. Certain time expired men ordered to go back to England if they so wish. Very sorry to say nine of my men leaving tonight including Sgt Walker A Sqn, Sgt Abrahams B Sqn and Sgt Harley C Sqn, 3 men I can ill spare. Sgt Edwards and L/Sgt Roberts are also amongst the number.

Oct 8  Made all arrangements for the move tonight, later on it began to rain and just as the move commenced it suddenly blew hard and pelted with rain, to add to the difficulty it was a pitch dark night. My line was relieved by the Gloster, Warwicks & Worcesters and a portion of the Bucks. Evelyn Rothschild in command of the latter taking over my dug out in the main ditch which by the time he arrived was under water ! the condition of the trenches made taking over a long process and it was not until past 11 pm that I was in a position to move out. The difficulty then began of getting out of the waterlogged trenches and it was a slow process. I came out of Chocolate Hill and then across the open, not easy to find the way in the dark. 

Oct 9  Eventually got the whole command safely established in the Reserve lines at 3 am, by which time it had luckily cleared. We have taken over the same trenches as we occupied from Sept 17th – 25th. Had a letter last evening from Freddy (brother F.W.Jarvis), who has arrived at Mudros with his Suffolk Yeomanry, part of Hodgson’s Brigade – I wonder if they will land here.