The Gallipoli Campaign

On 25 April 1915, just days after Potts’ arrival in the Middle East, the Allies landed on the Gallipoli peninsular in an attempt to break the stalemate then clogging the Western Front in France and Belgium. Their plan was to secure the narrows of the Dardanelles, land ground forces and drive north to seize the Ottoman Turk capital - then called Constantinople - thus knocking Turkey, an ally of Germany, out of the war and opening up a vital supply route to and from Russia via the Black Sea. But initial optimism faded as the fighting quickly degenerated into the same trench deadlock that the Gallipoli landings had sought to overcome. Conditions under the blistering Aegean sun were appalling - heat flies, lack of fresh water and disease only added to the Allies’ misery in the teeth of stout Turkish resistance - and the casualties were dreadful on both sides.

The campaign took place at the Gallipoli peninsula in Turkey from 25 April 1915 to 9 January 1916, during the First World War. A joint British and French operation was mounted to capture the Ottoman capital of Constantinople,and secure a sea route to Russia. The attempt failed, with heavy casualties on both sides.

In Turkey, the campaign is known as the Çanakkale Savaslari (Çanakkale Wars), after the province of Çanakkale. In the United Kingdom, it is called the Dardanelles Campaign or Gallipoli. In France it is called Les Dardanelles. In Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and Newfoundland,[10] it is known as the Gallipoli Campaign or simply as Gallipoli. It is also known as the Battle of Gallipoli.

The Gallipoli campaign resonated profoundly among all nations involved. In Turkey, the battle is perceived as a defining moment in the history of the Turkish people—a final surge in the defence of the motherland as the centuries-old Ottoman Empire was crumbling. The struggle laid the grounds for the Turkish War of Independence and the foundation of the Turkish Republic eight years later under Atatürk, himself a commander at Gallipoli.

The campaign was the first major battle undertaken by the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC), and is often considered to mark the birth of national consciousness in both of these countries. As Anzac Day, the 25th April remains the most significant commemoration of military casualties and veterans in Australia and New Zealand, surpassing Armistice Day/Remembrance Day.

For more information about the campaign why not visit its entry in Wikipedia? Click HERE

Click for information about Gallipoli today and its memorials

See also the Gallipoli Association website - click here


The numbers of fatal casualties are:

United Kingdom 21,255
France 10,000 (est)
Australia 8,709
New Zealand 2,721
India 1,358
Newfoundland 49

Total Allies 44,072

Ottoman Empire 86,692

Order of Battle

British forces involved at Gallipoli

(Mediterranean Expeditionary Force)
29th Division (landed 25 April 1915)
Australian and New Zealand Corps (landed 25 April 1915)
Royal Naval Division (landed 25 April 1915)
42nd (East Lancashire) Division (landed May 1915)
52nd (Lowland) Division (landed June 1915)
13th (Western) Division (landed 6-16 July 1915)
10th (Irish) Division (landed 6-7 August 1915)
11th (Northern) Division (landed 6-7 August 1915)
53rd (Welsh) Division (landed 9 August 1915)
54th (East Anglian) Division (landed 10 August 1915)

The 1/1st Berkshire Yeomanry were part of 6th Mounted Brigade within the Imperial Mounted Division

The other two units within the Brigade were:-

The 1st/1st Bucks Yeomanry
The 1st/1st Dorset Yeomanry

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