1st Battalion, Essex Regiment - Burma 44th & 56th Columns

Discussion in 'Burma & India' started by Fitzgeraldr, May 27, 2014.

  1. sol

    sol Very Senior Member

    From Fergusson's "The Trumpet in the Hall"

    When he reached his zenith as Commander of Special Force, he reached back into the past and brought back into his orbit two men, both startled at being rapt away from whatever they had been doing, who had been kind to him at Woolwich when others had been less so: Derek Tulloch and Lancelot Perowne, the one to be his Chief of Staff, the other to command one of his brigades.

    PEROWNE, Lancelot Edgar Conhop Mervyn
    Born 11/6/02.
    R.E. 2-Lt. 31/1/23.

    WINGATE, Ords Charles, D.S.O.
    Born 26/2/03.
    R.A. 2-Lt. 29/8/23.

    TULLOCH, Donald Derek Cuthbertson
    Born 28/4/03.
    R.A. 2-Lt. 31/1/23.
  2. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Thanks for the extra confirmation sol. :)
  3. BritishMilitaryHistory

    BritishMilitaryHistory Junior Member

    Bamboo43 and Sol,

    Thank you both very much. Yes, fits together now. I have the book 'War in the Wilderness' but missed the reference to them being together at Woolwich.

    Thank you again. Will keep you updated.


  4. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

  5. Fitzgeraldr

    Fitzgeraldr Active Member

    Thanks Bamboo that's really interesting and adds more details to what went on.

  6. f1terry

    f1terry Member

    possibly a silly question but were all these soldiers classified as Chindits or was it just a selected few?
    If so did they all wear the chindit badge?

  7. Fitzgeraldr

    Fitzgeraldr Active Member

    All men wore the Chindit Badge, the Essex were allowed to wear it till mid 45 when they we ordered to removed the badge as they had been re-designated as the 1st Essex
  8. Charpoy Chindit

    Charpoy Chindit Junior Member

    They were always 1 Essex.
    They would have had to remove the badge when the Chindits were disbanded, and the brigade was transferred to 101 L of C Area. Soon after that 1 Essex were transferred to 29 Brit Bde.
    A great fuss is made over the badge, but it was never worn in battle, and was only issued when they returned from Burma. 23 Bde was never actually in Burma, so I should say ‘returned from operations’.
  9. f1terry

    f1terry Member

    In The last post it states that 23bde were never actually in Burma so why was my father awarded the Burma Star who was in 1st battalion Essex Regiment att 60th Field RA.
  10. Fitzgeraldr

    Fitzgeraldr Active Member

    The 23rd Brigade were trained as a Chindit force with the plan that they would operate in the same fashion as the other units, however they were pulled of this and assigned to 14th Army, although they did not go deep into Burma they were involved in action on the India/Burma Border around Kohima & Imphal. the men of the Essex Regiment Marched in and then marched out marching covering over 400 miles and climbed over 60,000ft to reach their objectives.

    The Burma Star was awarded to all men that had Qualifying service in the Burma campaign counted from 11th December 1941 and included service in Bengal or Assam from 1st May 1942 to 31st December 1943, and from 1st January 1944 onwards in these parts of Bengal or Assam east of the Brahmaputra. Naval service in the Eastern bay of Bengal, off the coasts of Sumatra, Sunda and Malacca also counted.
  11. f1terry

    f1terry Member

    Thanks for the information. Does anyone know when or why men from the 1st Essex were att to 60th field like my father.
  12. f1terry

    f1terry Member

    I have managed to get my fathers war records from the MOD and there is one entry that I am not sure of.
    While he was in India it states that he entered the CONCESSION AREA. Does anyone know what that was.

  13. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member


    I'm never quite sure about this term. But in essence, I think it means going in to an area that is deemed a military zone, where there are already hostilities, or that these are likely or imminent. Concession territory is one that is administered by another entity other than the sovereign state. In this case the Allied Command, rather than the Indian Civil Government.

    I hope that is correct.
  14. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

  15. Fitzgeraldr

    Fitzgeraldr Active Member

    Thanks Bamboo
  16. veronicad

    veronicad Well-Known Member

    23rd Brigade. The troops commenced their move from Central India into Assam at the end of March 44.While crossing India by train the Japs advance on Kohima and threat to Dimapur and the Assam Railway developed.The Brigade was deflected for operation in that area.(railway) Both 44&56 Essex arrived 7th April at Mariana. Left for Bokajan on the 8th. 44 moved to Rangazumi on the 11th. 1st contact with enemy was made by 44&56 at Phekerima 25TH ? April. ( I have casualty figures) Essex & The Duke of Wellington's were found to be to near the hub of the wheel of Kohima, by the end of April the whole of 23rd Brigade were committed to the hills.
    Mr Jinks likes this.
  17. Fitzgeraldr

    Fitzgeraldr Active Member

    Thanks Veronicad, do you have any names of men that were serving or injured as still trying to find details of my Grandfather.


  18. veronicad

    veronicad Well-Known Member

    Hi Richard, As you may know already,The Essex, The Dukes and Borders were all 23rd BDE. I can tell you the route taken by your Grandfather. Name all places, villages and the dates they arrived and left these places. Also number of enemy killed,wounded or POW. at said places. Also, our own killed,wounded, and where. However, Only one or maybe two? Captain, Major?referenced as being killed/wounded. Kind regards, Allison.(veronicad)
  19. Fitzgeraldr

    Fitzgeraldr Active Member

    That's great can you share this information?

  20. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

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