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    Posted (edited)

    Parties of Boers under Hans Botha had been seen by the English on the hills near Vlakfontein (Balfour). In order to ascertain what they were doing an armoured train was sent out.


    Captain George Paget of the Rifle Brigade together with a detachment of his men and a few engineers proceeded along the line in the train. Hans Botha allowed the train to pass Vlakfontein then had one party blow up two culverts behind it while another party tore up the rails ahead of it.


    A tremendous fire was then opened on the occupants. Although they made a gallant resistance the ambush was a complete success and they were ultimately compelled to surrender. 


    Captain Paget was mortally wounded and most of his men were casualties by that time.


    Another party of 25 men under Capt Archibald Stewart, 1st Bn Rifle Brigade, followed on foot in support of the train. Stewart’s party was also attacked and he was killed in the engagement. They were within a few kilometres of a column under General Clery, which was en-route to Vlakfontein, but they arrived too late to be of any service.


    At the armoured train one of the Imperial Military Railway guards, Thomas Ingoldsby, from Scotland, was wounded and died two days later. He and two officers have been reinterred at Standerton. 
    “Heidelbergers of the Boer War” by Ian Uys

    Edited by archie777
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