British troops take up positions in Belgium

A low level attack on a German Convoy by British light bombers, Fairey Battles: 12th May 1940 S.W. of Luzenburg

Low level air attack

Another shot from the same sequence:
note the German troops running away from their vehicles across the fields.

From the Diary of Captain R. Leah, 1st Battalion, Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders :

Sunday 12th May

We entrained about 5.15 a.m. in the morning and were given coffee by the family and had breakfast from the Company Cookhouse. The road was crowded with transport and proceeded at snail’s pace most of the way. Self, C.S.M. Maclean and Cpl Cameron in 8 cwt [8 hundred weight truck or lorry] then the rest of “B” Coy – Bde H.Q. – remainder of Battalion. Fortunately no enemy bombing although the effects of yesterday’s efforts could frequently be seen.

Met Nigel on motor bike towards end of the journey. Debussed about a mile in Forest Soignies instead of Petit Espinette. Peter marched the company on to Overryssche and I waited for Coy Comdrs recce, meanwhile having a very good lunch in the restaurant opposite entrance to Forest.

Motored straight to Maemel Fort with Maurice and Coy Comdrs (Reech, Archie Stewart, Alex McCall answering for Donald who was billeting, Laurie and self). Lovely weather and most attractive countryside. Bn. H.Q. on the hill in the Farm House, M. T. in the orchard below Bn H.Q. and “B” Company in the wood towards the end of the track to the orchard. All had a very wide front. “A” Company on the right in Tombeek area, B Company in the centre, and C Company in the village of Terlanenen. Today we spent settling in and did no digging. Spent a very comfortable night in the open.

Coy 8 miles marching. Self 3 miles.

[Entry No.3, for the first entry see 10th May 1940]

See TNA WO 217/15

Contemporary Newsreel of the British Expeditionary Force moving forward into Belgium:

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Earlier in the war:

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