Provincial Grand Lodge of Dorset

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For Province P0060 - Province of Dorset.

Dorset Freemasonry Remembers #1

The first in a series of articles, on Dorset Freemasons lost in WW1, leading up to Remembrance Day.

In this article we remember 2nd Lieutenant Arthur Augustus Sharp who died on 22 March 1918. He was killed on the second day of the First Battle of the Somme (1918). He is remembered on the Pozières Memorial.

The Memorial commemorates over 14,000 casualties of the United Kingdom and 300 of the South African Forces who have no known grave and who died on the Somme from 21 March to 7 August 1918.

The memorial remembers the period of crisis in March and April 1918 when the Allied Fifth Army was driven back by overwhelming numbers across the former Somme battlefields, and the months that followed.

The Battles of the Somme in 1918 were mostly concerned with stemming the German advance which started in March 1918 and which made considerable gains in the Somme/Arras sector. Utilising surplus troops which had become available following the surrender of Russia after the October Revolution, the Germans gambled on a massive campaign that could win the war in the west before the USA could bring its resources to bear.

Initial gains were in places spectacular but eventually dogged resistance coupled with supply problems and sheer exhaustion closed down the battle. Other attacks were launched along the front to probe the Allied defences but the same pattern of initial gains followed by stalemate prevailed. British casualties were almost 345,000.

AA Sharp was a member of the Lodge of Amity No. 137

#dorsetfreemasonryremembers

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