THE GALLERY SOLACE - The Pierre Solace Gallery
The Somme Offensive
The following designs depict the twelve phases between 1st  July and 18th November 1916 that made up the Somme offensive. It is difficult to declare the Battle of the Somme a victory for either side. The British and French captured little more than 7-mile (11 km) at the deepest point of penetration—well short of their original objectives. Attitudes however are now changing and challenging  the long-held consensus that the battle was a disaster; arguing that the Battle of the Somme delivered more benefits to the British than it did for the Germans, the Somme was not a victory in itself, but without it the Entente would not, it has been argued, have emerged victorious in 1918.   On 24 February 1917, the German army made a strategic scorched earth withdrawal from the Somme battlefield to the prepared fortifications of the Hindenburg Line.The strategic effects of the Battle of the Somme cannot obscure the fact it was one of the costliest battles of the First World War. A German officer, Friedrich Steinbrecher, wrote: “Somme. The whole history of the world cannot contain a more ghastly word” Another, Captain von Hentig, described the Battle of the Somme as "the muddy grave of the German Field Army