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Why were the fighting and living conditions so bad for British soldiers on the Western Front in World War One?

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A: Why were the fighting and living conditions so bad for British soldiers on the Western Front in World War One? The French and British had to push the Germans away from Paris, and there was a constant battle to gain ground. Neither side could advance so; they dug trenches to offer them protection whilst fighting. This was the Western Front. The German trenches were built better than the British's. The Germans trenches had a well developed firing step, duckboards, and the use of concrete construction. Meanwhile, the British trenches weren't constructed as thoroughly, they were built to maintain the position of readiness, and were more exposed to the elements, and this was why the Allies soldiers suffered from more illnesses than the Germans. ...read more.


Another common problem was lice. As the men had to live so close together, they had limited washing facilities, and they wore the same clothes for days on end, it wasn't surprising that lice spread quickly. To help stop the epidemic, bath houses were set up behind the front line, this was where the soldiers coming out of the trenches could have a hot bath and a change of clothes. The lice caused itching and discomfort, but they also caused a more serious problem, 'trench fever'. Trench Fever was much like flu and typhoid. Its main symptom was lice as it was directly caused by getting bitten by a louse with a disease called 'Rickettsia Quintana'. Although it was a psychological condition, it was potentially fatal. ...read more.


This was particularly dangerous as anyone that heard anything would send flares up. They also had to fight, and attempt to capture enemy trenches, this made it harder for them to concentrate, sleep and do their duty effectively. In conclusion, the fighting and living conditions were bad for the British for many reasons. Their trenches weren't very well built; it took them sometime to find decent ways of transporting materials to the front line; they were more open to threatening diseases and deadly circumstances; and they spent long periods of time on the front line. So, the British soldiers had many factors that affected their living and fighting conditions, and in most cases, the conditions they had to live in were worse than the Germans. ...read more.

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