Trench Digging Drill written by Rob Gilson

Trench Digging Drill Additional Notes


The principle purpose of this drill is to simplify the process of marking out a trench at night but it is also a quick way of setting it out by day.


We hear that planks are commonly issued at the front in 7 foot lengths, so that the dimensions of this form of trench are especially designed for the employment of these planks for riveting or loop holes.


When once the drill has been learnt it is of course carried out without words of command. An NCO is put in charge of every six or twelve men, ? That the numbering is carried along through his own squad. 1,2,3,4,5,6,  1,2,3,4,5,6 etc.


If a waved line of trench is required it can only be done by the officer in charge passing along the line after it is extended and readjusting it. Any violent curve in the trench might produce complications in the traverses but the line can be quite sufficiently curved for all ordinary positions without upsetting the trench in any way as long as it is impressed on the men that they must step straight back thus:


The No 1 and the number 6 of the extreme ends of the line must drive in their picks to their right and left respectively at what they judge would be the half way point between themselves and the next man, if the were not at the end of the line.