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The New Zealanders at Gallipoli


When Sir Ian Hamilton realized that he could not win through to the Narrows with the force at his disposal, he cabled to England for reinforcements. The answer came that no reinforcements could be sent. Men and all the munitions of war were wanted for the Western Front. The dominant school of thought was now in favour of a winter base at Salonika. There was a keen disappointment over the Suvla failure. The people had been told that we were
Black and white photograph.

[Lent by Captain Janson, W.M.R.
At the foot of the Chailak Dere.
Officers and men of the Wellington Mounted Rifles going out to Hill 60.

only two miles from the greatest victory of the war. And that was true! But what miles? And we were now not much nearer victory than we had been before the push, for our every post was dominated by a higher Turkish one.

Sir Ian Hamilton decided to make another effort with a regrouping of the troops at his disposal.

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The only new troops he could call on were the 2nd Mounted Division, a body of British Yeomanry who had been doing garrison duty in Egypt. They were composed of young men who had served in the volunteer mounted service before the war and correspond to our New Zealand regiments of Mounted Rifles. They totalled about 5000 men, and were organized in four brigades (the 1st South Midland, the 2nd South Midland, the North Midland, and the London.)

The 29th Division, who since their desperate landing, had borne the brunt of the fighting at Cape Helles, were moved from there to stiffen the New Army division, which were dug in along the Suvla Flats.

By the night of August 20/21, all was ready for the projected attack. This was to consist of two preliminary movements.


The 29th Division was to move from Chocolate Hills against Scimitar Hill. Everywhere along the line the other units were to take the offensive to hold the enemy's reserves in check. The 13th Division was to attack at 3.15 p.m. The 34th Brigade was to attack on the plain near Hetman Chair. Next to it the 32nd Brigade was to get possession of a trench running from Hetman Chair towards “W” Hills.


The Anzac troops from Damakjelik Bair were to attack Kaiajik Aghala (Hill 60) and swing their left round to junction with the Suvla forces.

A reference to the map will show that when these two points—Scimitar Hill and Kaiajik Aghala—were taken the way would be clear for a converging combined assault on Ismail Oglu Tepe, the well known “W” Hills of Anzac. From it in a north-westerly direction ran the long spur on which—some 2700 yards away—was situated the village of Biyuk Anafarta. A similar distance away, but to the south-west, lay Kuchuk Anafarta. The occupation of Ismail Oglu Tepe would not only give us possession of the valleys running up to both these villages, but would also give us uninterrupted intercourse between Anzac and Suvla, now continually under the fire of the guns on “W” Hills. The wells in the neighbourhood were also valuable to whichever side held them.

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Black and white sketch map.

Sketch Map to Illustrate the Battles for Scimitar Hill and Hill 60.
“Kuyu” is the Turkish name for well. There were many valuable wells between Kaiajik Aghala and the sea.

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