World War One Diary for Wendesday, March 27, 1918:
Britain: BEF weekly officer casualties record 6,325 since March 21.
Somme: Turning point in great offensive (by Rupprecht). French ousted from Montdidier (c.50 miles from Paris), key railhead for reinforcements to Amiens, by Hutier’s Germans, but checked by Fayolle between Lassigny and Noyon.
Battle of Rosieres: British XIX Corps takes 800 PoWs and holds firm by the Somme. In Allied centre Germans capture Proyart, Morcourt and Lamotte-Warfusee and are 12 miles East of Amiens. Still a 10-mile gap between the British and French armies. Foch orders ‘lose not another metre of ground!’ Dismounted cavalry halt key German thrust 11 miles east of Amiens as 3rd Australian Division (Monash) comes up.
Western Front: JG 1 shoots down 13 Royal Flying Corps (RFC) planes (39 lost in all) over Albert (3 to Richthofen) without loss. Schlachtstaffeln attack 4 villages on Somme and Ancre. RFC drops record of 50t bombs and fires 313,345 MG rounds. On whole front Germans admit 6 losses for 34 Allied victims. Commander Second Lieutenant A McLeod wins posthumous VC for repelling 3 Fokker Triplanes and his saving his wounded observer.
Palestine: Allenby warned to stay on defensive and spare troops for France (9 Yeo regiments on March 26). Anzac Mounted Division attacks and temporarily isolates Amman, but second attack fails on March 28 as Turk Fourth Army C-in-C Djemal Kuchuk takes over German-stiffened defence.
North Sea: 5 minelaying British destroyers sink 3 German armed trawlers (72 PoWs) 70 miles northwest of Heligoland Bight.