Army records

Discussion in 'Service Records' started by Bluez28, Nov 20, 2019.

  1. Bluez28

    Bluez28 Member


    I am trying to decipher my grand uncles records, I am struggling to work out where he was Inbetween Malta and North Africa, I also realise when it says North Africa it means Italy due to his medals.

    Also it states he was injured 15/7/44 in Italy. His niece states when he was shot a brother was there, I know my grandad was in Italy with the 52nd Royal artillery and attached to the 8th Indian division, but I have not applied for the other brothers records yet.

    I have had to upload them as a Google drive as they are over 2mbs

    I can see he transferred into the Kings own regiment from the Royal welch fusiliers
    Thanks for any help in advance
  2. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    I’ve tried to view the images on my iPhone but the first 2 are too blurred to read.

    They were both about 580kb so if you posted them direct on to the forum - on separate posts you might overcome the 2MB limit.

    IIRC Service in Malta 1940/43 did qualify for Africa Star.

  3. Bluez28

    Bluez28 Member

    Thanks. I will try taking better pictures tomorrow and upload them or try scanning them as my printer/scanner is A4 and every page is on A3
  4. Bluez28

    Bluez28 Member

  5. Bluez28

    Bluez28 Member

    I have had to scan A3 documents on a A4 printer and chop them so they are under 2mb, but they are all the important bits
  6. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    Thanks for posting legible copies of the papers.

    Have you been provided with any B103 forms? They are usually the most helpful forms with which to track a soldiers movements?

    The shorthand endorsements on the B102 are usually expanded and additional information added to the B103. It will note his medical evacuation route from 19 Casualty Clearing Station.

    Wikipedia says this about 8th Kings Own Battalion

    “The 8th Battalion joined the Malta garrison in August 1941 and served through the Siege.[65] It was assigned to the 232nd Infantry Brigade and briefly joined the 233rd Infantry Brigade. In November 1943, the battalion was moved to Palestine and then Italy with the 25th Indian Infantry Brigade, part of the 10th Indian Infantry Division. In Italy, on 30 January 1944, the 8th Battalion was disbanded and its personnel merged with the few surviving remnants of the 1st Battalion, King's Own, which had been virtually lost during the fighting at Leros.[66]

    and this about 1st Battalion -

    “The 1st Battalion, King's Own was stationed in Malta on the outbreak of war, moving to Karachiin British India at the end of 1939. It later served with the 17th Indian Infantry Brigade. It subsequently served in Iraq and Syria with 25th Indian Infantry Brigade, with which it served until October 1943, of 10th Indian Infantry Division. In August 1942, the battalion embarked from Egypt for Cyprus, but the transport was torpedoed and the troops had to return and re-embark later. In May 1943, the battalion returned to Syria, and then it joined 234th Infantry Brigade in the Aegean Islands in October 1943. Here, the bulk of the battalion was captured by the Germans on 16 November, after the Battle of Leros, with only 57 officers and men managing to escape the island. The 1st Battalion was reformed in 25th Indian Infantry Brigade, on 30 January 1944, by amalgamating with the 8th Battalion, King's Own. The reformed battalion, under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Richard Neville Anderson, later served in the Italian Campaign with 25th Indian Brigade for the rest of the war.[48]


    So the above extract from his papers shows that he served with 8 Battalion in U.K. and Malta - qualifying for the Africa Star in Malta - before moving to Middle East Forces (MEF) in Palestine - for a period of training - before proceeding to Italy 22nd March 1944 to join Allied Armies Italy (AAI) - often endorsed on files as British North Africa Force (BNAF) to serve with 25th Indian Brigade, 10th Indian Division.

    From Wikipedia re 10th Indian Division -

    “In November 1943 in was placed on security duty in Lebanon. On 27 November, it began training for amphibious assault and mountain warfare in preparation for its role in the Italian Campaign.[6] In January 1944, Lloyd was killed in a car accident while overseeing a training exercise in Egypt, command passed to Major General Denys Whitehorn Reid.[7]

    On 9 March 1944, the division was ordered to transfer to the Italian front. On 22 April, it relieved the 1st Canadian Division at the Ortona sector which it held along with the 4th Indian Infantry Division. There it engaged in frequent patrols in order to prevent the enemy from sending reinforcement to the ongoing Battle of Monte Cassino. On 4 June, the division was moved to Venafro where it continued its training in mountain and urban warfare. The division returned to the front lines on 28 June, replacing the 8th Indian Infantry Division. Advancing through the Tiber valley the division occupied Umbertide on 2 July. Taking advantage of its training in mountain warfare it went on to take Città di Castello and Montone, infiltrating deep into Axis positions and striking from the flanks and the rear. By 1 August, the division's vanguard had reached the north of the Tiber's basin. Further advance was blocked by the Alpe di Catenaia heights, a solid block of ridges and peaks that could only be taken by a set piece assault. On 4 August, troops belonging to the 10th Division captured Monte Altuccia, two days later the Regina height was occupied. The latter was abandoned as the division had to replace the 4th Indian Infantry Division on its former front line sector which spanned 15 miles (24 km). On 19 August, Alpe di Catenaia heights were finally overtaken by the 3/1st Punjabis. On 17 September, the unit was transferred to the Adriatic in an effort to penetrate the Gothic Line.[8]

    Your great uncle was likely wounded in the mountain fighting round Montone where 5 days earlier on 10 July 1944 in the vicinity of Morlupo, 2 km north of Montone, Naik Yeshwant Ghadge, 3/5 Mahratta, 10th Indian Division earned posthumously the Victoria Cross, the highest British military award, for bravery under enemy fire.

    You will discover more detail of 8 & 1 Kings Own Battalions activities through their War Diaries but your great uncle will likely not be mentioned by name.

    Tricky Dicky and Bluez28 like this.
  7. Bluez28

    Bluez28 Member

    Thanks for that, big help. Unfortunately unlike my grandads there is no B103 with it showing his x lists etc. I will email them incase they forgot but maybe they were no longer with it / lost
    timuk and Tullybrone like this.
  8. Bluez28

    Bluez28 Member

    I have Chased up with the records people. It dident have a B103 when they processed it. Shame but at least I've learnt what medals he got and he was in Malta etc
    Tullybrone likes this.

Share This Page