7951979 Ronald R STANIFORD, 16th/5th Lancers: Arezzo Campaign

Discussion in 'Italy' started by Italy Research, Jun 1, 2020.

  1. Hi,
    I wondered if anyone had any information on the 16th/5th Royal Lancers Armoured Corps when they were in Arezzo. Im looking for my Uncle, a Trooper called Ronald R Staniford, I know he was killed there and is buried at the war cemetery in Arezzo. Maybe someone knows if he was in Africa, Tunisia or elsewhere before Italy, any photos would be great too.
    Thank you
    Italy Research
  2. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    For record, full CWGC details:
    Service Number 7951979
    Died 15/07/1944
    Aged 21
    "A" Sqn. 16th/5th Lancers, Royal Armoured Corps
    Son of Arthur Godfrey and Mabel Dorothy Staniford, of Sutton, Surrey.
    Location: Italy
    Number of casualties: 1232
    Cemetery/memorial reference: VI. B. 1.
    See cemetery plan

    Also edited title slightly to grab attention of those who might be able to help.

    Welcome to the forum and good luck with your research.

    Have you applied to MOD for copy service records?
    Request records of deceased service personnel
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  3. Guy Hudson

    Guy Hudson Looker-upper

    Screenshot 2020-06-01 at 14.19.09.png
    © I.W.M. NA 16890
    Sergeant Johnson of No.2 A.F.P.S. photographed the 16th/5th Lancers in Arezzo on the day your uncle was killed.
    Screenshot 2020-06-01 at 14.29.32.png
    Trooper Williams was killed on the same day. He was also from 'A' Squadron, he could have been in the same crew as your uncle?
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  4. minden1759

    minden1759 Senior Member

    I can tell you what 16/5L were doing in the Fourth Battle of Cassino in May 44 if that helps. Your uncle would have been heavily involved in that because the Regt supported 28 Inf Bde.


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  5. Hello Guy,
    Thank you for the information and photo. It looks as though there was a Trooper L Williams from the same 16th/5th Royal Lancers regiment squadron “A” with 8 others (inc my Uncle), that are buried at Arezzo cemetery.
    Thank you
  6. Hi Frank,
    Thank you for you help.
    I thought my uncle may have been at Monte Cassino, he died on 15th July 44, so your information helps. This was the fourth and final battle for Monte Cassino, the monastery was heavily fortified by the Germans.
  7. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Hello Italy Research,

    This general article describes the route taken by 16/5 Lancers, part of 6th British Armoured Division, from North Africa up through Italy.

    16/5 Lancers entered Arezzo early on the morning of 16 July, so your unce was killed during the approach on the previous day.


    Last edited: Jun 2, 2020
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  8. Hi Vitellino,
    Thank you for the information and the link to the 6th British Armoured Division.
    I wasn’t sure if my uncle died actually in Arezzo or outside, but what you said makes it clear. I have heard that he and his fellow crew were hit, the tank he was in then went into the river (not sure what river) and he was killed.
    Thank you
  9. Thank you for the information, very helpful.
  10. Thank you dbf, I had a look at the MOD link, but having read about applying for my uncle’s service record, I don’t have a death cert. my uncle died whilst in service so I’m not sure if I still need a death cert with the application forms.
  11. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Hi Nancy

    You don't need a D Cert - as per MOD link:
    "Requirement for a death certificate

    To process your application, a death certificate (except where death was in service) ...."

    As proof of death, you can print the CWGC certificate, available by clicking "Download commemorative certificate (PDF)" on your uncle's commemorative page
    4jonboy likes this.

  12. Ok, Thank you, that’s great
  13. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Am looking out some more info. Nancy and I will send you a map. I know the area very well indeed.

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  14. Thank you Vitellino
  15. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Here's the map I promised.


    Once source I have found says that the attack went in from the west ( MY YELLOW ARROW) but you need to get hold of a copy of the War Diary to be sure. (Source: Cassino to the Alps Ernest F. Fisher)

    Here are the details for the Brigade diary (16/5 Lancers were part of 26 Armoured Brigade) and also for the Lancers themselves:

    WO 170/594 26 Armoured Brigade: H.Q.1944 Jan.- Dec.

    WO 1670/825 16/5 Lancers 1944 Jan.- Dec.

    The diaries are held in the National Archives (now closed) but you can contact two users of this forum who will get them for you when it opens. Send me a private message.


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  16. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member

    Italy Research,

    I can get you the war diaries from Kew. I get them for quite few members on the forum, especially if they are Italy related. Send me a PM.

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  17. minden1759

    minden1759 Senior Member


    Gary gets War Diaries for me from Kew. He provides a brilliant service.


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  18. Hi Frank,
    Thank you for the email you sent me regarding Monte Cassino, I’m digesting it all, very interesting.
  19. Thank you Vitellino
  20. Hi Gary,
    That’s very nice of you. I know my uncle was in Monte Cassino and I think (if Ive got it right) on the way to Arezzo he was killed, July 1944.
    I’m would be interested in the war diaries for that time, but I would like to wait until I have his service record so I can pinpoint what information I actually need. I will get back to you.
    Thank you
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