After the defeat at Mons and with the French forces on their right flank collapsing, British forces withdrew to the south. However, not all of the individual units received the direct instructions to do so and believed that they were under orders to hold at all costs. Thus, two battalions of the British 5th Division were attacked by the entire German 8th Division west of the town of Elouges.
A French Battlefields “Virtual Battlefield Tour” [This battlefield is not included in Fields of War.]
On 24 August, German 8th Infantry Division was moving along the Mons - Valenciennes road. North of the village of Audregnies they encountered elements of the British 5th Infantry Division that had not received the orders to withdraw. As the German troops advanced and started to turn the British left flank, two cavalry squadrons charged across open ground scattering German infantry, but falling to the guns of German artillery. The German attack continued. Almost out of ammunition, the British 1st Norfolk and 1st Cheshire Regiments retired later that evening. They had suffered over 750 casualties, but they had delayed the German Army’s critical timetable to execute the Schlieffen Plan.
German Gun Position at Elouges (50.411717,3.704774)
Position of the German batteries firing upon the 5th Division.
British Cavalry Charge Elouges (50.400996,3.709688)
The Irish Dragoon Guards and 9th Lancers charged astride the old Roman road (Chaussée Brunehault) against the German guns to the north of Rue de Mons. They did not achieve the guns, heavily decimated by the German artillery fire, the survivors turned right and passed through the lines of the 1st Norfolks.
1st Cheshire Positions (50.391325,3.719602)
1st Norfolk Positions (50.397706,3.724912)
Elouges Communal Cemetery (50.403963,3.750699)
The cemetery holds 55 burials from the local fighting of 24 August 1914.
Fields of War: Fifty Key Battlefields in France and Belgium