30th June 1916
The 11th, 12th and 13th South Downs Battalions of the Royal Sussex Regiment, consisting of approximately 4,500 men, were known colloquially as “Lowther’s Lambs”. This was a reference to local MP Claude Lowther, who had taken personal responsibility for raising the battalions. The 12th and 13th Battalions, supported by the 11th, were sacrificed in a diversionary raid on the Boar’s Head at Richebourg on 30th June 1916 in an attempt to draw German attention away from the main Somme battle area further south. The Battle of the Boar’s Head lasted less than five hours, and the Southdowns Brigade lost 17 officers and 349 other ranks. Over 1,000 men were wounded or taken prisoner, and the 13th Battalion was all but wiped out. June 30th 1916 was subsequently known as “The Day Sussex Died”.
Created by: Yvonne27542