Some more confusion, Germans frontline is from the Marsh area (Dixmuiden) to the South, direction Arras (which the Germans appear to have abandoned?) which means that the British advanced somehow without orders to do so. It seems that a change in warfare is taking place, the first trench lines are appearing.
Team Control Gloss
The Germans went firm and started to entrench in front of the British, with more active operations in South East Belgium where the French made a counter-attack and cut off the Western Belgium-France area from railway communications with Germany. This meant that the Germans were unable to advance this turn.
In tandem the British set their cavalry to screen the flank, and being cavalry they found the German front lines and conformed to them. The rest of the BEF remained in their defensive positions (as ordered). ARRAS was still held by the Germans, but the RFC suffered from bad weather and could see the depth entrenchments behind ARRAS so made an erroneous report that it had been abandoned. Had the Germans been able to attack the cavalry screen wouldn’t have slowed them down much at all.
While taking the new positions, the BEF was attacked by the Germans, Arras was lost but the German casualties were high.
British right flank doesn’t have contact with the French. On the political point, the Belgiums requested to the Royal navy to move their toops by sea to Ostend. However, this would bring the BEF in a difficult position again, due to the fact that this would create a gap between BEF’s left flank and the sea.
We have a gap between Doullens and the North Sea due to the Belgians reluctancy to fill this gap. We request the British Goverment to put some political pressure on the Belgians.
Confusion all around, BEF’s left flank isn’t at Hesdin, but at St. Omer Â Indian cav. reconnaissance is making probes towards Dunkirk. Situation is very confusing because BEF command still thought that the BEF was situated from Hesdin to Arras but actually it was from St. Omer to Arras. (With now a Cav. unit probe at Dunkirk. The Belgians (still there!) are helping the Cav. between Calais and St. Omer. Belgiums will probably request supply from the Britsh. French 6th has contact with the BEF’s right flank.
Team Control Gloss
The Indians arrived at ABBEVILLE (having landed a week earlier at MARSEILLES and then moving by rail all the way across France). Despite efforts to rectify the situation the BEF still have two hanging flanks. On the plus side they have a very good logistics supply and munitions are arriving faster than they are using them. Also the first Territorial Force battalions have started to arrive which is allowing them to replace the losses in the regular Corps from the attack on the Scheldt.
At this stage it looked very much like the German Second Army was going to punch through the hole and push towards PARIS while the German 1st Army screened the BEF from intervening. There seemed a realistic prospect that the British would get back on their ship and leave France. The War Cabinet refused the request to move the logistics base from ROUEN to BOLOUGNE on the ground that it was in danger of being over-run. Similarly the BEF moved both its HQ and railhead to be off the route between the Germans and PARIS.
Due to the fact that both the Belgians collapsed to the left of us and to the right of us the French 6th Army were thrown back as well, the BEF was in a difficult position. With bravery and in coordination with the battered Belgium forces a new line of defence had to be formed. After some consideration this line was formed from Montreuil (Belgium Army) and the BEF positioned at the line Hesdin – Arras.
During the last few days lots of german prisoners were made, but we must not forget the casualties on our side. Railhead at Amiens, HQ is moved to Grandvillers.
Team Control Gloss
The BEF made a spectacular fighting withdrawal from the position in the map above. They managed to break contact with the enemy (inflicting casualties on the Germans without taking any themselves). They fell back towards the newly arrived IV Corps which had concentrated at ARRAS. The German 2nd Army (shown above at CAMBRAI) attacked towards ARRAS and captured it (because the British had given the same fighting withdrawal orders to all their forces). Because the Germans didn’t immediately follow up the forward elements of the BEF they formed a line from ARRAS through BETHUNE to ST OMER rather than retiring the entire distance ordered (this was so that they weren’t too far out of contact with the French).
We have moved up into a line between the coastal marshes at DIXMUDE to LILLE. Two corps of the German First Army are on our Right flank and we intend to attack them in the flank. We believe that they have extended lines of supply.
There is a gap between our right flank and the French left. This presents a risk to our troops.
A planned attack towards Tournai / Valenciennes is in progress with a deep recon by the Cav (to disorganize German Supply). Talks with the Belgiums have revealed that they are attacking out of Antwerp as well.
The BEF counters are finally on the map at the beginning of September as they are almost in contact with the enemy, in a secondary defensive line. The Belgians were having a rough time of it and the Germans have battered the Belgian Army almost out of existence.
Although noted in the report to the War Office by the players the fact that there was a gap between them and the French 6th Army they were more concerned about dealing the German 1st Army‘s Left Wing (shown in the middle bottom of the map photo) a decisive blow from the flank.