I Anzac Corps in France and Flanders

I Anzac Corps was established at Ismailia in Egypt on 14 February 1916 from what had previously been the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (the original “Anzac”) which had recently participated in the Gallipoli campaign. On 28 March its headquarters was exchanged with that of II Anzac. Its headquarters arrived at Marseilles from Alexandria on 4 June 1916.

On 31 December 1917 I Anzac Corps was renamed the Australian Corps.

Headquarters locations

  • From 3 April 1916: La Motte-aux-Bois
  • 3 July 1916: Bailleul
  • 10 July 1916: Vignacourt
  • 19 July 1916: Contay
  • 3 September 1916: Abeele
  • 27 October 1916: Villers-Bocage
  • 30 October 1916: Heilly
  • 28 January 1917: Hénencourt
  • 11 April 1917: Grévillers
  • 26 May 1917: Querrieu
  • 26 July 1917: Hazebrouck
  • 5 September 1917: Hoograaf
  • 15 November 1917: Flêtre

Commanding Officers

Lieutenant-General Sir Alexander John Godley (left with HQ for II Anzac, 28 March 1916)
28 March 1916: Lieutenant-General Sir William Riddell Birdwood (arrived with HQ from II Anzac)

Australian War Memorial photograph P03717.009, with thanks. William Birdwood led the corps throughout almost all of its existence.

Battles and Engagements

The Battles Nomenclature Committee of 1921 defined I Anzac Corps as participating in the following:

Reserve Army

The Battles of the Somme, 1916:

The Battle of Pozières (15 July – 3 September 1916) including the fighting for Mouquet Farm

Fifth Army

Operations on the Ancre (11 January – 13 March 1917) including the capture of the Thilloys (25 February – 2 March) and the capture of Irles (10 March)

The German retreat to the Hindenburg Line (14 March – 5 April 1917) including the capture of Bapaume (17 March)

Flanking operations to the Arras offensive: the first attack on Bullecourt (11 April 1917), the German attack on Lagnicourt (15 April 1917), the Battle of Bullecourt (3-17 May 1917)

Actions on the Hindenburg Line (20 May – 16 June 1917; I Anzac Corps withdrawn 26 May)

Second Army

The Third Battles of Ypres:

The Battle of Polygon Wood (26 September – 3 October 1917)

The Battle of Broodseinde (4 October 1917)

The Battle of Poelcapelle (9 October 1917)

The First Battle of Passchendaele (12 October 1917)

The Second Battle of Passchendaele (26 October – 10 November 1917)

Links

The British Corps headquarters in France and Flanders

II Anzac Corps