Discussion in '1940' started by Charles Barne, May 30, 2019.

  1. Charles Barne

    Charles Barne Member

    Afternoon all

    Am editing my grandfather's diaries from WW2 and came across the below intruiging passage. I was wondering if anyone knew where they were off to and what happened to them? I'm guessing the Hamilton mentioned is Lieutenant Colonel Adrian Hamilton DSO, MC (1897–1960)

    Any help gratefully received

    / / /

    Sunday 30th June 1940

    Duty officer and head far from good.

    Spread my bed at 130pm for a lie down and at 131pm the telephone goes, then continues to go solidly ’til 5pm. Sometimes three phones going together and have five people in to see me. Poor Mrs Calloty has to be hauled in to help me time a special train. At 5pm I’m hauled off to a conference with all the big boys – very frightening.

    Little ‘Basil’ Hamilton, O.C. Black Watch, also summoned and the plan discussed for sending his battalion off complete in a cruiser. Destination so secret I’ll disclose it later in my diary. Baggage, rations, stores etc have to be organised for loading and it can’t be discussed over the telephone. There will be a great deal to do.

    Monday 1st July 1940

    We start off at 630am next morning for the port passing the cruiser on the way. She is looking very weather-beaten and her guns all blistered. Discover she’s Liverpool and was one of the five that chased the five Wop destroyers and sank one.

    Hamilton arrives at 830am, his vehicles at 9am and the ship comes alongside at 1030am after bunkering. The ship takes off her seaplanes and gives us the hangar accommodation. Here we stow eleven vehicles and a lot of stores. It’s quite incredible how much can go onboard and what a lot of fighting material constitutes a battalion. Not one unnecessary article is taken.

    Leave at 6pm just as the ship is sailing. Say goodbye to Hammie who send a message to Cara to say he hopes he won’t be ‘under the weeds’. I think they are in for a party all right, and I don’t think they could be better led. Not a soul knows where they are going – a well-kept secret (unusual).

    / / /
  2. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

  3. dryan67

    dryan67 Senior Member

    Didn’t the 2nd Black Watch get sent to defend Somaliand in July 1940?
    Owen and Tricky Dicky like this.
  4. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Thanks Dryan for the opening to more info

    Italian conquest of British Somaliland - Wikipedia

    The 2nd Battalion, the Black Watch was sent to Aden from Egypt by cruiser, ready to reinforce the French, as Legentilhomme feigned ignorance of the armistice terms.

  5. dryan67

    dryan67 Senior Member

    Back home on the computer. Here are the moves for 2nd Black Watch:

    23rd Infantry Brigade – 4 May 1940 to 1 July 1940
    It joined the 23rd Infantry Brigade in Egypt on May 4th on the Suez Canal with HQ at Ismailia, one company at Kantara and another at Port Said. On April 14th, 1940 the battalion received two officers and forty-two other ranks from the Rhodesia Regiment. It was sent to Aden on June 30th, 1940 and arrived on July 1st at Khormaksar in Aden.

    OC Army Troops, Aden – 1 July 1940 to 6 August 1940
    The 2nd Black Watch left Aden on August 6th for operations in British Somaliland.

    OC Somaliland Camel Corps – 8 August 1940 to 17 August 1940
    It moved to Laferug by August 8th as part of its defence. It left Somailand on August 17th after operations.

    OC Army Troops, Aden – 19 August 1940 to 26 August 1940
    The 2nd Black Watch returned to Aden on August 19th. It left for Egypt and arrived at Suez on August 26th.
    Tricky Dicky likes this.

Share This Page