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Category;1st AIF/2nd Div/6th Bde

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  • 22nd Battalion AIF (Victoria) [6th Infantry Brigade]
    Formed Victoria February 1915. Departed Melbourne Ulysses 3 May 1915. 
    • 1st Reinforcement departed Melbourne Berrima   28 June 1915, 
    • 2nd Reinforcements departed Melbourne Demosthenes 16 July 1915, 
    • 3rd Reinforcements departed Melbourne Anchises 26 August 1915, 
    • 4th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Hororata 27 September 1915, 
    • 5th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Osterley 29 September 1915, 
    • 6th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Ulysses 27 October 1915, 
    • 7th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Commonwealth 26 November 1915, 
    • 8th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Afric 5 January 1916, 
    • 9th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Warilda 8 February 1916, 
    • 10th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Wiltshire 7 March 1916, 
    • 11th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Orontes 29 March 1916, 
    • 12th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Euripides 4 April 1916, 
    • 13th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Ayrshire 3 July 1916, 
    • 14th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Themistocles 28 July 1916, 
    • 15th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Shropshire 25 September 1916, 
    • 16th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Nestor 2 October 1916, 
    • 17th Reinforcements departed Sydney Argyllshire 31 October 1916, 
    • 18th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Hororata 23 November 1916, 
    • 19th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Ascanius 11 May 1917, 
    • 20th Reinforcements departed Melbourne Nestor 21 November 1917.

  • Battle Honours: Suvla, Gallipoli 1915,  Egypt 1915-16, Somme 1916-18, Pozieres, Bapaume 1917, Bullecourt, Ypres 1917, Menin Road, Polygon Wood,  Broodeseinde, Poelcappelle, Passchendaele, Ancre 1918, Hamel, Amiens, Albert 1918, Mont St Quentin, Hindenburg Line, Beaurevoir, France and Flanders 1916-18

  • Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

22nd Battalion

The 22nd Battalion AIF was formed on 26 March 1915 at Broadmeadows Camp in Victoria. The battalion became part of the 6th Brigade of the 2nd Division.

Most of the battalion embarked for Egypt on 8 May 1915. The battalion deployed to Gallipoli in the first week of September 1915 allowing elements of the 2nd Brigade to be rested from their positions in the front line at ANZAC. The battalion served on the peninsula until the final evacuation in December 1915, and were then withdrawn to Egypt and brought back to strength with reinforcements.

While most of the battalion was serving on Gallipoli the transport drivers, along with the other drivers from the 6th Brigade, were sent to the Salonika front to support the Serbs. They did not rejoin the battalion until after the evacuation of ANZAC.

In March 1916, the battalion embarked for France and experienced their first service on the Western Front in reserve breastwork trenches near Fleurbaix at the end of the first week of April 1916. The battalion’s first major action was at Pozières, part of the massive British offensive on the Somme. In September/October they were moved to the Ypres sector then back to the Somme for the winter. The battalion spent most of 1917 bogged in bloody trench warfare from Bullecourt to Broodseinde in Flanders. In 1918 the battalion returned to the Somme valley. After helping to stop the German spring offensive in March and April, the 6th Brigade participated in the period of peaceful penetration of the enemy lines. It was in mid-May that Sergeant William ‘Rusty’ Ruthven earned the 22nd Battalion’s only Victoria Cross. In the last days of August and September the battalion helped capture Mont St Quentin. The 22nd Battalion took part in the last action fought by the AIF on the Western Front, the battle of Montbrehain, in October 1918.

At 11 am on 11 November 1918 the guns on the Western Front fell silent. The November Armistice was followed by the Peace Treaty of Versailles signed on 28 June 1919. The last elements of the battalion began their journey home from the Western Front in May 1919 to return to Australia for demobilisation and discharge. Text from AWM

  • 854 killed, 2378 wounded (including gassed)
  • Decorations

    • 1 VC
    • 1 CMG
    • 5 DSO
    • 32 MC, 2 bars
    • 30 DCM, 1 bar
    • 150 MM, 11 bars
    • 6 MSM
    • 35 MID
    • 8 foreign awards

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Digger History:  an unofficial history of the Australian & New Zealand Armed Forces