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About the book
  • Published: 1 March 2011
  • ISBN: 9781864711264
  • Imprint: Vintage Australia
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 304
  • RRP: $19.99

Beneath Hill 60




The extraordinary little-known true story of the cat-and-mouse war waged beneath the trenches of the Western Front and the subject of a powerful new film.

The extraordinary little-known true story of the cat-and-mouse war waged beneath the trenches of the Western Front and the subject of a powerful new film.

'Ten seconds, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one - fire! Down goes the firing switch. At first, nothing. Then from deep down there comes a low rumble, and it as if the world is spliting apart...'

On 7th June 1917, nineteen massive mines exploded beneath Messines Ridge near Ypres. The largest man-made explosion in history up until that point shattered the landscape and smashed open the German lines. Ten thousand German soldiers died.
Two of the mines - at Hill 60 and the Caterpillar - were fired by men of the 1st Australian Tunnelling Company, comprising miners and engineers rather than parade-ground soldiers. Drawing on the diaries of one of the key combatants, Benealth Hill 60 tells the little-known, devastatingly brutal true story of this subterranean war waged beneath the Western Front - a stygian battle-ground where men drowned in viscous chalk, suffocated in the blue gray clay, choked on poisonous air or died in the darkness, caught up up in vicious hand-to-hand fighting...

  • Pub date: 1 March 2011
  • ISBN: 9781864711264
  • Imprint: Vintage Australia
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 304
  • RRP: $19.99

About the Author

Will Davies

Will Davies is a historian, writer and filmmaker. Somme Mud: The war experiences of an Australian infantryman in France 1916-1919, which he edited, has become a bestseller in Australia, the UK and The Netherlands. In The Footsteps of Private Lynch has also been published to acclaim in Australia and the UK. Beneath Hill 60 tells the true story of the Australian miners and soldiers who tunnelled under Hill 60 near Ypres and eventually broke through to create a new frontline.

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