The First Battle of Ypres

Posted in: World War I
Written by Thomas Young on 18th October 2013 at 10:18am
The First Battle of Ypres

The 19th October 2013 marks the 99th anniversary of the First Battle of Ypres which begun on 19th October 1914 and ended on 22nd November 1914.


The First Battle of Ypres was fought to gain control over the Belgium town of Ypres from 19th October to 22nd November 1914. 

 

It was widely believed this battle was fought  to secure the supply line from the English Channel Ports. Ypres was the last big obstacle for the German advance on the French town of Calais. France's strategy was to try and prevent German forces from outflanking the Allied Front in the north. The town of Ypres also had another tactical advantage for both sides as it was that located on high ground as it's located in the northern part of Belgium which would make fighting on the rest of the Western Front much easier. 

 

This was an intense battle between the Allies and Alliance forces. Although the Allies won, both sides sustained huge casulties with the British losing 7,960 men and having 29,560 men wounded, the French had an estimated 80,000 casulties and and  the Belgians 21,560 casualties. The Germans lost 19,530 men and had 83,520 casulties. From those statistics the battle is also became known as the Massacre of the Innocents of Ypres.

 

This battle begun "the race to sea" and started the static Western Front with both sides entrenching in. The battle finally ended on 22nd November 1914.

 

The forces involved in this battle were the French, British and Belgium on the Allied side and the German-Empire forces on the Alliance side. 

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