Company Sergeant Major James Brennand

Company Sergeant Major James Brennand, 6th ( Service ) Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He was killed in action in France on the first day of the Battle of Loos, aged 33, on 25th September 1915. He was the husband of Elizabeth Brennand of 5 Parade, Berwick-upon-Tweed and is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Dud Corner, Loos, France. The ultimate Objective was the village of Haisnes which was about 3000 yards from the start line. The immediate objectives were trenches called ” Mad Point ” and ” Madagascar “. They were piped out of the trenches by 60 year old Pipe -Major Robert McKenzie into a maelstrom of artillery, machine gun fire, gas and uncut wire. The attack was a disaster and no ground was gained. 11 Officers and 358 Other Ranks were killed and 8 Officers and 272 Other Ranks were wounded or gassed. Pipe Major McKenzie died of his wounds and probably deserved the V.C. but gained no award. The first photo shows an actual attack with the troops disappearing into ghostly clouds of smoke and gas. This was the first time in the War that the British Army had used gas. The second shows the village of Loos after capture. The third is an artist’s nightmarish illustration of a Battalion attack at Loos with the troops wearing their gas hoods and using primitive grenades.

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