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Date: September 23rd 1917

Sept. 23 - Corpl Loxton and I on pass to the Courcelette battle field where the Canadians fought so well at the Somme battle of 1916. It is on the Bapaume-Albert road. We started early, walked to Bapaume and got a lorry from there to Courcelette. Only a few walls are standing of the town and there are many graves of our boys on the outskirts, and numbers of crosses with only "Unknown Canadian Soldier" on them. Just before we started to leave the place we noticed a French soldier standing in what was once the room of a house so we went over to see him. He could talk a little English. It seems he had just got a pass for a few days from Belgium to try and see if he could locate his wife and family, whom he had not saw (sic) since 1914 and had hear (sic) nothing of them. The ruins of the home he stood in once had been his home. He was very down hearted as he felt certain that he would never see his wife and family again. From there we walked to High Woods battle field. It is on the other side of the road and nearer Bapaume. Here the English soldier lost very, very heavy in the taking of it. From here we got a lorry for Bapaume. We visited the ruins of the Cathedral there and I brought home a German skull from a great pile which had been in the Vault of the church for many years. We had to walk the rest of the way home.