8th Irish Battalion, Juno, and Dad's role in Hitler's downfall

Discussion in 'British Army Units - Others' started by Paul Parry, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. Paul Parry

    Paul Parry Junior Member

    Dear all,
    excuse me, this was meant to be a thread, but as I'm rather new at this game I didn't quite crack-it, so I hit the reply button.

    I'm trying to find some of my late father's wartime history. His name was Walter Parry, a dispatch-rider in the 8th Irish Battalion. Landed on Juno beach along with the Canadians. Other than the odd snippit about the landings and his way up to Arnhem, that whole period stayed a mystery. I think he got injured in Belgium and lost most of his company pals. He then got shipped-back to England to Amersham Hospital. He always avoided talking about the subject.
    With me living in France for over 30 years now, I would have liked to have been with him on a D-Day anniversery in Normandy, but it never happened, too painful I suppose.
    If anyone can help me out; recognise his name, has a group photo, information, or can throw a little light on the subject, I would be very grateful. (besides being a lovely fella he was also a very good artist, apparently he was always sketching someone or other).

    I have nothing but admiration for those brothers in arms who just got up and got on with it, it's just a shame it took a war to see such fine fraternity.

    Thanks in advance,
    Paul Parry

    PS. If anyone has a spare copy of Jim Fitzsimon's book "8th Irish Battalion" they would like to sell me, or knows where I could get a copy? I can be contacted at : xxx
    steve.smith923 likes this.
  2. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Moved your post to own thread .
    Welcome to the forum.
  3. Trux

    Trux 21 AG

    There is a thread somewhere on this forum about 8 Battalion Kings Regiment (which is the Irish Battalion) on D day. I remember contributing to it.

    8 Kings formed a Beach Group on Juno and landed with the Canadians.

  4. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Yes, Mike , Paul posted on there but said he was trying to start a thread so moved it.
  5. PsyWar.Org

    PsyWar.Org Archive monkey

    The book must be a rare one, only one library in the UK has a copy. Not even the British Library has it and they are supposed to have a copy of every book published in the UK.

    This looks to be their war diary for 1944 (held at the National Archives):

    WO 171/1317 8 King's Regiment (Liverpool) 1944 Jan.- Aug.
  6. Paul Parry

    Paul Parry Junior Member

    There is a thread somewhere on this forum about 8 Battalion Kings Regiment (which is the Irish Battalion) on D day. I remember contributing to it.

    8 Kings formed a Beach Group on Juno and landed with the Canadians.


    Hi Mike,
    thanks for your speedy comment. I already have some knowledge of the Beach Group on Juno. What I'm really looking for is a personal account, someone who might of known him, a photo would be great. Apparently he did his dispatch riders training near the Scottish border...he mentioned that at one point he rode along part of Hadrian's wall.
    I'll take a look at that tread you mentioned, thanks again

  7. Scout Sniper

    Scout Sniper Senior Member

    I've spent the past year trying to find a copy of the 8TH IRISH BATTALION and so far I've had no luck.

  8. 4jonboy

    4jonboy Daughter of a 56 Recce Patron

    Is the ISBN 0-9541111-1-7, ?
    Found a book - 8th Irish Battalion by Jim Fitzsimons on Amazon today-used around 3 quid

  9. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

  10. Trux

    Trux 21 AG

    That's the one Diane. I found it a few minutes ago but have no idea how to display the link.
  11. Hi folks - just seen this thread - I was involved in the one quoted above.

    First point - Jim Fitzsimons book was available at the Museum of Liverpool Life which has just re-opened - you might want to try there (0151 478 4545). I have seen it on Amazon - not sure if it's out of stock. I have a copy he gave me when he published it and I made a comparison of his details and the official war diaries for the battalions movements in WW2 (see below).

    Trux (Mike) was also involved and had loads of info regarding the beach party and landing formations - I was mightily impressed with what he was doing.

    Just for the record - the Battalion was re-formed as a Territorial unit in 1939 before being made a regular unit in (I think) September of that year. It was disbanded in August 1944 with most of the men going to the Green Howards - I think some went to Burma as well. My grandfather served throughout before being discharged in November 1944 through injury.

    There's not a lot of photos about - I'll see what I've got scanned and try to put them up.

    The Kingsmen 'Official' Diary of movements.
    First post-war edition, August 1946.

    8th May – Formed as a Territorial Battalion
    11th May – My Grandfather enlisted (OK - this is extra to official record!)
    July – went to Gower, South Wales
    September – stationed at Maghull, then to Heysham Towers, Morecambe

    March – Hovingham, Yorkshire
    May – Broadstairs and Ramsgate (Kent)
    September (early) – Rye
    November – Haydon Bridge, Northumberland

    April – Adderbury, Oxfordshire
    July – Welwyn Garden City
    November – Lowestoft

    August – Felixstowe

    July – outside Glasgow
    September – Winchester then to Winbourne (Dorset) and then to Bournemouth – ‘where it remained until the succession of moves round the various camps in the concentration areas prior to embarkation’ with the exception of January 1944

    January – two weeks in Scotland on the banks of the Firth of Forth
    June - embarkation to Normandy

    Jim Fitzsimons' recollections in his book:
    Fitzsimons, Jim (2004), A Personal History of the 8th Irish Battalion, The King's Liverpool Regiment, ISBN 0-9541111-1-7

    I have made the comparison notes in brackets

    Liverpool - (agrees with official record)

    2 weeks in Driffield, Yorkshire – (officially Hovingham, Yorkshire)

    Before 1941
    Margate and Ramsgate – (officially Ramsgate, Broadstairs and Rye)

    Northumberland – (officially in 1940 – WRONG year)

    Adderbury, Oxfordshire – (officially in April 1941 – WRONG year)
    May – Felixstowe – (officially in August – WRONG by 3 months)

    Paisley, Scotland and many coastal areas - Ayrshire, Irvine, Dundonald, Monkton and Prestwich – (officially July 1943 outside Glasgow) – he adds more specific locations but OK for year and area
    September – South of England – (officially Winbourne, Dorest, etc which is more specific) – OK for year and area

    1 January – Scotland – (officially - two weeks in Scotland on the banks of the Firth of Forth) - OK for area
    Extra to and more specific than the official record – Slapton Sands, Eastleigh and Southampton prior to embarkation
  12. Side note - do you know your dad's service number - if it starts 377 then it will mean he was in the battalion when it was territorial prior to being made regular.
  13. jayhawkboy

    jayhawkboy Junior Member

    Hello everyone....I am new to the forum. I have a personal effect from a former Beach Group member, most likely the 8th, and I suspect he was a casualty. Is there any way to identify him from his serial number? All I have is his laundry number which is: G 66531.


  14. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Michael -
    That entry should read -WIMBOURNE - DORSET -since the flood just North of Bournemouth which was in Hampshire in those days- changed to Dorset in the 70's
  15. dbf likes this.

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