Lecture 1 from Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series 2015-2018
Artillery doctrine was updated after some of the lessons from the Boer War.
What was the role of the artillery at the beginning of the war?
How was artillery integrated into the infantry plan? What was the preferred method of employment, indirect or direct, and why?
How was artillery organised?
What was the role of the CRA (Commander Royal Artillery) and what resources did he have?
What fire support was available at ANZAC and how was it controlled? How were adjustments made?
In 1915, radio was already in use – particularly with providing co-ordination with the Naval Gun Fire Support.
At 06:00 how many Turkish troops opposed the landing?
How long did the troops on the beach wait for Turkish reinforcements to arrive? (!)
The first battery to land was the 26th (Jacob’s) Battery. at 10:30 on the 25th. How did it perform?
The Field Artillery didn’t get into action on the 25th because Bridges feared that they would be captured.
How was the process for calling for fire refined to speed up the response from the guns and how did the role of artillery change as the campaign progressed?
Some of the issues faced at ANZAC included the guns themselves not being able to fire at high trajectory, the lack of field positions, with many on lower ground and the difficulty in observing fire with the observers being on the lower ground, and communications between the Forward Observer and gun line. The range was often under 100 meters between the lines of trenches. Enemy counter battery fire, machine gun fire and sniper fire also hampered the provision of offensive support.
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