A Machine Gun Battalion was attached to each Infantry Division and was formed of four MG Companies.
|Division attached to:||42nd (East Lancashire)|
|Formed from the:||125th Machine Gun Company|
|126th Machine Gun Company|
|127th Machine Gun Company|
|268th Machine Gun Company|
The No. 42 Bn, MGC was formed on the 23rd February 1918.
As a unit of the 42nd Infantry Division, it will have taken part in the following battles and engagements.
|FIRST BATTLES OF THE SOMME|
|24 and 25 March||Battle of Bapaume [VI. Corps, Third Army].|
|28 March||First Battle of Arras [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|5 April||Battle of Ancre [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|THE ADVANCE TO VICTORY|
|SECOND BATTLES OF THE SOMME|
|21 to 23 August||Battle of Albert [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|31 August to 3 September||Second Battle of Bapaume [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|BATTLES OF THE HINDENBURG LINE|
|27 to 29 September||Battle of the Canal du Nord [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|9 to 12 October||The Pursuit to the Selle [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|THE FINAL ADVANCE IN PICARDY|
|17 to 23 October||Battle of the Selle [IV. Corps, Third Army].|
|The division was withdrawn into IV. Corps Reserve and halted around Beauvois from 24th October to 3rd November, when the advance was resumed. On the 10th November the division captured Hautmont and Fort Hautmont. This was the end of its fighting in the Great War. On the 11th November the 42nd Division was halted astride the Sambre at Hautmont, with its most advanced troops on the Mauberge-Avesnes road. The division did not proceed to the Rhine as part of the Army of Occupation, and during November it remained at Hautmont. On the 1st December the division was visited by H.M. The King. Between 14th to 19th December the division moved into the Charleroi area; and by m/n. 15th/16th March, 1919, it had been reduced to cadre strength. In April, 1920, the division began to re-form at home.|
The above picture shows a flag that is attributed to the Battalion Headquarters of the 42nd Machine Gun Battalion, Machine Gun Corps, 1918. The accompanying documentation indicates that is was flown outside the headquarters position and has sustained damage from the elements. It was retained by a member of the Headquarters and given to a private collection in the 1970s. It was later passed to this Vickers MG Collection as part of a larger collection of items.