We have taken the opportunity with our 2021 editions of the OFFICIAL HISTORY OF THE GREAT WAR – FRANCE AND BELGIUM series to redesign the covers and print on 140g silk paper. This official history was the grandest ever produced in Britain, and its purpose was to provide “within reasonable compass an authoritative account, suitable for general readers and for students at military schools”. Due to the number of full-colour maps bound in each volume, previous attempts to reprint this valuable reference either floundered, or were produced with the maps in monochrome. At last, the acclaimed work of the official cartographers who had 90,000 maps at their command can be examined as they intended – in full colour.
FRANCE AND BELGIUM 1915 Vol 1. Winter 1914-15: Battle of Neuve Chapelle: Battles of Ypres. OFFICIAL HISTORY OF THE GREAT WAR.
This volume covers the first five months of 1915, a year that brought little comfort to the BEF. In this account we read of the affairs of Cuinchy, Givenchy and St Eloi, costly actions with little or no result. The major operations were the Battle of Neuve Chapelle, and the battles of Ypres (Second Ypres) Gravenstafel Ridge, St Julien (during which gas was used for the first time on the Western Front), Frezenberg Ridge and Bellewaarde Ridge. The two other major British attacks in May, Aubers Ridge and Festubert are covered in the next volume. There are 36 appendices, giving order of battle details and various Operation Orders and samples of correspondence.