Battle of the Somme film


Free to view 



through the kind partnership of the Imperial War Museum and English Heritage.


In 1916 whilst the Somme Campaign was on going,


the Battle of the Somme film was released and seen


by over 20 million people.


Audiences flocked to the cinemas for a chance to see


actuality footage from the battlefront and in the hope


of spotting their loved ones on screen.



The Film is 74 minutes long and will be shown at Silver Screen Cinema

Dover Discovery Centre, Gaol Lane, Market Square Dover CT16 1PD


Tel: 01304 228 000


Email: to give us a guide of numbers

wishing to see the Battle of the Somme film


Only 77 seats available 11.00am

Only 77 seats available 2.30am


Monday 12th September 2016






It will also be shown in the Secret wartime tunnels, Dover Castle,

                        on Sunday  11th September 2016, 7.30pm.

Booking will be required. If you would like further details,

please email


The Battle of the Somme also known as the Somme Offensive, was a battle of the First World War fought by the armies of the British and French empires against the German Empire. It took place between 1 July and 18 November 1916 on both sides of the River Somme in France. It was one of the largest Bbattles of World War I, in which more than 1,000,000 men were wounded or killed, making it one of the bloodiest battles in human history.  The Allies agreed upon a strategy of combined offensives against the Central Powers in 1916, by the French, Russian, British and Italian armies, with the Somme offensive as the Franco-British contribution. The main part of the offensive was to be made by the French army, supported on the northern flank by the Fourth Army of the Briish Expenditionary Force. 

When the German Army began the Battle of Verdun on the Meuse on 21 February 1916, many French divisions intended for the Somme were diverted and the supporting attack by the British became the principal effort. The first day on the Somme  (1 July) was a serious defeat for the German Second Army, which was forced out of its first position by the French Sixth Army, from Foucaucourt-en-Santerre south of the Somme to Maricourt on the north bank and by the Fourth Army from Maricourt to the vicinity of the Albert-Bapaume road. The first day on the Somme was also the worst day in the history of the British army, which had c. 57,470 casualties, mainly on the front between the Albert–Bapaume road and Gommecourt, where the attack was defeated and few British troops reached the German front line. The British army on the Somme was a mixture of the remains of the pre-war regular army, the Territorial Forces and the Kitchener Army, which was composed of Pals Battalions, recruited from the same places and occupations.


The battle is notable for the importance of air power and the first use of the tank.

At the end of the battle, British and French forces had penetrated 6 miles (9.7 km) into German-occupied territory, taking more ground than any offensive since the Battle of the Marne in 1914. The Anglo-French armies failed to capture Péronne and were still 3 miles (4.8 km) from Bapaume, where the German armies maintained their positions over the winter. British attacks in the Ancre valley resumed in January 1917 and forced the Germans into local withdrawals to reserve lines in February, before the scheduled retirement to the Siegfriedstellung ( Hindenburg Line) began in March.

The battle remains controversial over its necessity, significance and effect.