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Festubert and Givenchy

Following the Battle of Ypres the decimated units of the 1st Canadian Division, reinforced by volunteers from the Cavalry Brigade, marched south to join in the Allied offensives which were already under way. While the British mounted diversionary attacks in French Flanders, the French launched an only partially successful attack in Artois. Although the British were partly successful at Neuve Chapelle and bloodily repulsed at Aubers Ridge, the offensive continued, chiefly as a support for French operations further south, and for the Canadians who were thrust into the fighting at Festubert in May 1915 and Givenchy in June. The fighting followed the grim pattern of frontal assault against powerful enemy defences, and although the Canadians achieved some of their objectives the gains were negligible and the cost in lives extremely high. The Canadians suffered 2,468 casualties at Festubert and a further 400 at Givenchy.

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