In an attempt to bring an end to the stalemate of the trench warfare on the Western Front in 1915, Britain and France devised a plan to knock Turkey out of the Great War and thereby weaken Germany's position. The intention was to send a powerful fleet through the Dardanelles and the Sea of Marmara in order to bombard Constantinople (modern Istanbul) and thereby bring about a Turkish surrender. Before this could take place however, the various Turkish defensive forts at the mouth of the Dardanelles had to be destroyed and operations to effect this, began in February 1915. This work by Wyllie depicts one of the several bombardments of the forts at Chanak which took place early the following month, namely March 1915. In the event, the campaign proved a costly failure but there were still high hopes of victory in the spring of that year.