|Elevation||42–70 m (138–230 ft)
(avg. 60 m or 200 ft)
|Land area1||2.98 km2 (1.15 sq mi)|
|- Density||67 /km2 (170 /sq mi)|
|INSEE/Postal code||62358/ 62580|
|1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.|
|2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.|
A small farming village situated 9 miles (14.5 km) northeast of Arras, at the junction of the D919 and the D33 roads.
|From the year 1962 on: population without double counting—residents of multiple communes (e.g. students and military personnel) are counted only once.|
Fresnoy was virtually destroyed in 1917 during the First World War.
After their successes in the spring campaigns (including the taking of Vimy Ridge), the Canadians and British pushed eastwards across open country until they reached German defence lines that, in this sector, ran north to south from Arleux, on to Oppy and then down to Gavrelle.
Following a successful push by the Canadians through Arelux in late April, German positions in and around Fresnoy became the scene of fierce fighting on April 28, 1917. Ernst Junger, who wrote Storm of Steel, recalled the barrage on the village:
‘Fresnoy was one towering fountain of earth after another. Each second seemed to outdo the last. As if by some magical power, one house subsided into the earth; walls broke, gables fell, and bare sets of beams and joints were sent flying through the air, cutting down the roofs of other houses. Clouds of splinters danced over whitish wraiths of steam. Eyes and ears were utterly compelled by this devastation.’
A few weeks later, on May 5, the Canadians managed to capture the village. It was lost, however, when ferocious German counter attacks were launched on May 7 and pushed the Canadians and British back. The frontline then stabilised just outside the village.
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