German tank(s) knocked out by the 24th Lancers?

Discussion in 'RAC & RTR' started by Ramiles, Dec 1, 2020.

  1. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Recently on twitter...

    https://twitter.com/James1940/status/1333322254973874176?s=19

    Raises the question (to me) was there ever a picture taken of a German tank knocked out by the (British) 24th Lancers?

    i.e. post battle pictures around St.Pierre, Tilly-sur-Seulles, Fontenay, Tessel Wood, Rauray etc. ?

    There might be some, somewhere, labelled as such?

    I know too for instance that there are a number of panzer tank wrecks in the photo reconnaissance pictures taken around then and after, so perhaps those too might fit into the same criteria.

    All the best,

    Rm.

    Links...

    Battle of Putot-en-Bessin (7th - 11th June 1944)

    The Battles for Point 103 and St. Pierre (8th– 18th June 1944)

    The Battle for Tilly-sur-Seulles - Normandy - June 1944

    24th Lancers - Tessel Wood (c25th June 1944)

    Defence of Rauray by the 24th Lancers, Tyneside Scottish et alia

    24th Lancers, M4 vs Panthers. Rauray 1/7/44
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
  2. Mr Jinks

    Mr Jinks Bit of a Cad

    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
  3. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Attached Files:

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  4. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Same title, but different question... ;-)

    Re. Lt. William Sherwood Brameld, D.S.O, M.C. (256922) Royal Artillery.

    DSO citation (June 1944)
    Recommendation for Award for Brameld, William Sherwood Rank: Lieutenant ... | The National Archives

    &

    MC citation (April/May 1945)
    Recommendation for Award for Brameld, William Sherwood Rank: Lieutenant ... | The National Archives

    In Lt. Brameld's DSO citation there are a number of incidents mentioned. In one of them near St.Pierre, in Normandy, on 9th June 1944...

    When "there were enemy tanks out of range of his own guns he borrowed a Sherman* from a neighbouring Regiment and himself remained outside the tank carrying out observation and exposed to small arms fire until at least one and possibly two enemy tanks had been destroyed and all fire from that direction stopped.

    * /17pr is written nearby.

    See also: Re. Point 103 - Gunners in Normandy

    & Re. Brameld - Gunners in Normandy

    Edit: The "neighbouring Regiment" here being perhaps either the 24th Lancers or possibly the SRY. At this point in the campaign however the number of Fireflies with the 8th Armoured was approximately as follows...

    20210613_053828.jpg

    Both the 4/7 RDG and the SRY at around this stage had fewer Fireflies than the 24th Lancers - as the 4/7 RDG and the SRY had landed with two Squadrons of DD Shermans and their DD Sherman Squadrons did not initially contain Firefly tanks. What Fireflies they had (i.e. 5 a piece) landed with their non-DD Squadron - the Squadron which was waterproofed and fitted with wading apparatus.

    The 24th Lancers - had three Firefly troops (3x3=9) one in each of their sabre Squadrons - A, B and C, as well as a further Firefly attached to the HQ troop of each of A, B and C - giving the total of 12, as shown above etc.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2022
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  5. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

  6. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

  7. ltdan

    ltdan Nietenzähler

    Panther 204 of 2nd Company, SS Panzer Regiment 12 is examined by Sgt.George Dring, top, and Tpr.Harry Hodkin (Sgt.Drings WO, kneeling), after they helped knock it out at the crossroads between Fontenay and Rauray on 26 June 1944
    https://ar-ar.facebook.com/sherwood...iment-12-is-examined-by-sgt/2188369151397135/


    British garrison of a QF 6-pounder pass near Panther "204" of the 2./SS-Pz.Rgt.12, destroyed during the Operation Epsom, at the crossroads of the D139 and D173, between Cheux, Tessel, Rauray and Fontenay le Pesnel, 14 Km W of Caen, France. 26 June 1944.

    complete photo series of tank 204:
    Page Title
     
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  8. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    There's this map for example in the 4th/7th RDG book "The First and the Last" that "places" the 24th Lancers... some way further south etc. around the 26d6m1944...

    FB_IMG_1624717289193.jpg

    Edit: and a bit prior to that... 25d6m1944 etc.

    20210626_153645.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2021
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  9. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    The SRY - War Diary - for... 27d6m1944 has...

    27th June 1944
    B Sqn sent out two tps to find out the position in RAURAY. Unfortunately, the Germans had brought up some tps which they cleverly concealed in some trees and knocked out Ray Scott and his trp. Sgts Biddel + Green were also killed during the morning. RAURAY was eventually cleared of the enemy and in the village itself we found about 8 or nine enemy tanks including Panthers + Tigers and Mk IV’s which were in various stages of being knocked out. 2 of these a Tiger + a Panther were in complete working order and we brought them back to our lines.

    So there is perhaps a possibility, at least, that some of these "8 or nine enemy tanks including Panthers + Tigers and Mk IV’s which were in various stages of being knocked out."

    Had been previously engaged by the 24th Lancers.

    Incidentally there often seems to be references to the tank troops having "one Firefly per troop" in these instances, however as the "fighting strength" below shows, for the 27th June 1944, the number of Sherman 17-pr's was almost down to 1 per Squadron rather than "1 per troop"...

    FB_IMG_1624771532354.jpg

    Unfortunately, Robert Hart's MC citation (above in prior post #6) doesn't seem to specify whether or not his complete troop remained a complete troop of Sherman Fireflies, as due to losses etc some reorganisation within the 24th Lancers seems most likely to have had to have occurred. With Luddington, for instance moving to lead "C" Squadron after Major Cowley was wounded at St.Pierre. And Captain Poole having himself either been shot - kia - by a sniper (or as stated in the MO's account - perhaps in error at the time - due to the airburst of a mortar above his tank).

    The MM citation for Paddy Caulfield (above post #5) does still state specifically that Sergeant Caulfield was in command of a 17-pounder, and at least around D-Day, Paddy Caulfield had been in Lt Hart's "A" Squadron 24th Lancers Firefly troop.

    20210612_110834.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2021
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  10. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Page 90 of "None Had Lances" 10th June 1944, notes the 24th Lancers driving "the Germans back into Tilly with heavy (German) casualties." It then recounts the German losses - "Two Tigers, four Panthers and three self propelled guns."
    Unfortunately these numbers do not appear in the 24th L War Diary, so their ultimate source seems perhaps to remain obscure.
    The presence of Tigers is particularly hard to accommodate, and let alone further - to find evidence for the Germans having lost two Tigers there, nevertheless the area fought over is relatively compact so there ought perhaps to be some evidence of wrecked German tanks in the area, six of which might have been of various makes and marks from around the date of 10d6m1944.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2022
  11. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    This one seems to appear online with a wide variety of associating captions...

    THE BRITISH ARMY IN NORMANDY 1944
    Object description - B5768 - Photo by Sergeant A.N. Midgley.
    Infantry of 2nd Battalion, Essex Regiment file past a knocked out German Panther tank on a road near Tilly-sur-Seulles, 19 June 1944.

    I don't think (m)any of the (current) images online use the IWM number or the precise IWM caption. So it might be interesting to see if there are examples where references are provided and researched.

    Edit - By the evidence of the below, etc. and presumably the approximately North to South route of the 2nd Battalion, Essex Regiment on way to Tilly-sur-Seulles the Panthera they encountered seem probably unlikely to have been tackled by the 24th Lancers - whose own route into Tilly-sur-Seulles was rather more in the direction of east to west, via Saint Pierre. Though they might - perhaps conceivably- have originally been knocked out elsewhere and recovered/moved back to the place(s) where the photographs were taken.

    2nd Battalion Essex Regiment June 1944, War Diary » Normandy War Guide

    Has...
    PONT-DU-GUILLETTE - 19th June 1944
    0040 Carriers reports that the carrier comdr, Capt N.F. Harrison has been shot. Died wound fatal.
    0100 All coys have nothing to report
    0315 C Coy patrol bumped into enemy truck, it disappeared south along road.
    0345 A Coy patrols bumped into enemy patrol of 7 ORs, one of our patrol wounded.
    0800 The Bn were ordered to attack again by the right flank. Enemy shelling was then reported to be falling on TILLY. Accordingly the CO decided to push on to the village as it appeared enemy might have pulled out. This was done. Bn was able to secure the village.
    1325 B Coy reported that TILLY-SUR-SEULLES roads and houses are mined with TELLERMINES. All tps warned to keep a sharp watch out for booby traps etc.
    1600 Enemy reported in woods (with tanks) at MONTILLY 8467.
    2355 All quite. D Coy ordered to withdraw to bridge to give depth. 8 ORs wounded during the days fighting.


    PonttoTilly.png

    Re. Photographer Sergeant Norman Midgley...

    THE BRITISH ARMY FILM AND PHOTOGRAPHIC UNIT 1941 - 1947

    B 7947 - Object description - 24d7m1944
    Army Film and Photographic Unit photographer Sgt Norman Midgley in his jeep, his official issue Super Ikonta camera at the ready during the assault on Caen, France. Sgt Midgley was a staff photographer with the Daily Express newspaper in Manchester before joining the Army Film and Photographic Unit. He served with 5 Section AFPU from 1944 until the end of the war. His assignments included the D Day landings.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2022
  12. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Similarly succeeding (B5768) is...

    B5769
    CAPTURE OF TILLY-SUR-SEULLES
    Object description
    Original wartime caption: Another German Panther tank which was knocked out near Tilly sur Seulles.

    And...

    B5770
    CAPTURE OF TILLY-SUR-SEULLES
    Object description
    Original wartime caption: A close-up of the Panther tank showing the shell hole in the turrent of the tank.
     
  13. m kenny

    m kenny Senior Member

    No Tigers in Normandy until June 13th
     
  14. m kenny

    m kenny Senior Member

    Same Panther B5769-70    Midgeley 19-6-44-horz.jpg

    Two hits on the glacis, Strike on the RH of the turret. MG ring was also hit and and lastly a big chunk of the LH sprocket and track blown away by another hit.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2022
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  15. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Not sure who erroneously first claimed to have spotted Tigers in Normandy and particularly in the area of Tilly-sur-Seulles, though there is an 8th June 1944 example here...

    https://www.facebook.com/tommiesatwar/photos/a.624638054268993/701116329954498/?type=3

    Essex Regiment War Diary - 8th June, France.
    During the day and night our patrols were active, and from information and civilian reports we were in contact with 1 Bn 916 GR - 352 inf div.

    Tiger tanks were reported.

    Image:
    Infantry of 2nd Battalion, Essex Regiment file past a knocked out German Panther tank on a road near Tilly-sur-Seulles, 19 June 1944. © IWM (B 5768)

    2nd Bn The Cheshire Regt

    9th June 1944 has...

    "Main interest on June 9th centred round Point 103. Here the enemy was counter-attacking with vigour, using the 21 Panzer Division whose name we had known well in the desert. 3 and 5 Platoons helped repulse these attacks, even being called upon at times to fire at Tiger tanks; 3 Platoon suffered casualties. In the evening the position was made more secure by the arrival of 1 Dorsets and by the attack of 8 D.L.I. on St Pierre further to the South. The Platoons did a combined shoot in support of this attack, which was successful, but suffered some casualties from the heavy shelling with which the enemy greeted it. 3 Platoon then moved back from Point 103 to cover the left flank of the position. 4 Platoon spent a peaceful morning but had their share of action in the afternoon when two enemy tanks with Infantry attacked and threatened to overrun them. When the nearest Tank was only a hundred yards away, Sergeant Pickin who had withheld the fire of his Section, opened up, forcing the Tank to close down and slow up and making it an easy victim for the anti-tank gunners. The second tank withdrew and the Section then engaged and dispersed the enemy Infantry who had followed it up. For his display of coolness in this Sergeant Pickin subsequently received the Military Medal.
    "B" and "C" Companies remained in the positions they already occupied during the day; but in the evening 9 Platoon went off with 13 Heavy Mortar Platoon to join 151 Brigade and came into a defensive position with the 6 D.L.I. North-West of Conde. 1O Platoon made a valuable capture during the day - an Auto-Union stuff car in first class condition, save only for the shot they themselves had put into it, which they took from a German War Correspondent and presented to their Company Commander. In the 69 Brigade area 7 Platoon earned the gratitude of the Infantry by acting as "beaters", driving through the cornfields in their carriers and "putting up" the German snipers from their hide-outs. Major Mellor, "investigating" a chateau at Duoy Ste Marguerite, discovered an enemy map on which were marked the entire up-to-date enemy dispositions on the front, and which revealed for the first time the presence of Panzer Lehr Division. This was handed over to Brigade who were suitably grateful."

    And...
    8th Battalion Durham Light Infantry Report, 1944 June
    For - 11th June 1944 - has...

    "Sunday the 11th June was a day of shelling. The Battalion remained in their positions, undergoing constant shelling, whilst our own artillery shelled TILLY and all known enemy positions. The RAF were straffing FONTENAY and other enemy strongholds to the SOUTH and EAST. By 1700 hours 7th ARMOURED DIVISION had tanks in TILLY and attempts were made during the evening to link up their patrols with ours.
    Enemy tanks movements had been reported constantly, and they were known to be WEST of the village, on the far side of the SEULLES Bridge, towards TILLY. During the evening the Battalion positions were very heavily shelled and our troops were under constant spandau fire from the high ground to the SOUTH.
    At 2050 hours 'B' Company, SOUTH of the Battalion were attacked by Tiger tanks who machine gunned their slit trenches, killing the Company Commander Major T.L.A. Clapton, and seriously wounding Major A.H. Dunn, the 2i/c.
    Three tanks were identified and the presence of infantry suspected
    .
    At the same time 8th ARMOURED BRIGADE HQ on Point 103 was attacked by small parties of enemy tanks. The Battalion being at one time completely out off and surrounded by tanks. The Command- ing Officer was at a conference at Brigade HQ and he was unable to return in his jeep and had to make a hazardous journey back on foot through open fields.
    The tanks were shelling Bn HQ from close range, and we were forced to withdraw some few yards and form a close area, with all Companies grouped together in a rough square. The attack was not pressed, however, and our efforts with those of our own tanks and the NH Anti Tank Guns were sufficient to drive off the enemy.
    By dusk the enemy had withdrawn and there were no further incidents during the night."

    NORMANDY 1st Bn The Dorsetshire Regiment (an extract from "Three Assault Landings")

    Having...

    "The 11th saw us with our hold on Point 103 unshaken, but with 7th Armoured Division making little progress on our right and the enemy still in great force to our front and on our eastern flank. A determined counterattack with the obvious intention of evicting us from Point 103 was made later in the afternoon of this day. The divisional plan for the day had included the move forward of the 69th Brigade to relieve us on Point 103 and to clear the enemy out of the Cristot area. The 6th Green Howards were to clear Cristot, and the 5th East Yorkshires were to relieve us. After certain armoured patrols had been sent in the direction of Cristot the Green Howards advanced, but were forced to withdraw after some difficult fighting. They appeared to run up against the infantry part of the enemy counter-attack, which had formed up near Cristot. The armoured part of the enemy counter-attack came in from the south and south-east, and was made principally by Tiger tanks of the 12th SS Panzer Division, so much so, that Point 103 became known to all those who fought there as "Tiger Hill." The enemy tanks advanced and brought heavy fire to bear on the "C" Company positions and on Battalion Headquarters and elements of Support Company, which were immediately in rear of "C" Company. "D" Company also came under a good deal of fire. Most of our own tanks were forced to withdraw to reverse slope positions, but some of the "Fireflies" (17-pdr Shermans) made good shooting. Casualties were heavy in "C" Company and Battalion Headquarters. Nearly the whole of the Orderly Room staff were killed or wounded, and L/Cpl Swan took over the duties of Orderly Room Serjeant. Serjt Parker, the Intelligence Serjeant, was killed. The enemy 88 mm. shells were bursting in the tree tops, and this had a shrapnel-like effect on those in trenches or ditches immediately below - we were to learn more of this during the course of apprenticeship in the Bocage country. The Battalion was sorely tested, but it hold firm and a somewhat critical situation was averted. In their steadiness, "C" Company were greatly encouraged by the example of the Commanding Officer and Major Nicoll - the former remaining with the Company throughout the ordeal. The Second-in-Command acted as a sort of liaison officer between the Commanding Officer, Brigadier H.J.Cracroft (commander of the 8th Armoured Brigade),the commanding officer of the armoured regiments in support (the 4/7th Dragoon Guards and the 24th Lancers) and the Gunners - so he found his time fully occupied! L/Cpl Hockley, of the Regimental Provost, greatly distinguished himself by repeatedly carrying messages and ammunition forward to "C" Company under intense fire, and won the M.M. Pte Goddard, one of the stretcher bearers, also won the M.M. for showing great gallantry in attending to the large number of wounded in and around Battalion Headquarters under heavy fire. Pte Lewis, a stretcher-bearer with "C" Company, also showed great devotion to duty during the height of the action.
    The enemy effort went on until 2230 hours, and as a result of this action the relief of the Battalion by the 5th East Yorkshires had to be postponed. A subsidiary counter-attack against "D" Company from the south-west appeared at one time imminent, but did not materialize. Similar reports came from "B" Company shortly after midnight, but their front, too, remained quiet. Meanwhile, "A" Company had been enjoying comparative immunity on the north-western corner of the "box", and they only saw one or two enemy patrols. A section under Cpl Noble dealt in a most satisfactory manner with one of these patrols, killing or capturing nearly all of the enemy."

    Additional...

    The Malta Brigade Strikes Back, 1944 June

    With...

    "From the Beach-head to the end of the first phase (7th - 19th June).
    During the 7th of June, the Brigade continued to clear up the bridgehead and mop up generally while the follow-up brigades continued their advance southwards. The Hampshires mopped up the remaining resistance in Tracy-sur-Mer and Manvieux without much difficulty and then re-organised for the next move. During the morning Lt Col C.H.R. Howie arrived to take command of the battalion. The Dorsets sent a company group, which included carriers and mortars, with a squadron of the Sherwood Rangers in support, to mop up enemy pockets in the area Bazenville - La Croix. This they did most effectively, killing about 40 Germans and taking over 70 prisoners. The Devons continued with their original task and captured the Longues Battery, with little opposition, taking 90 prisoners. The next day, the 8th of June, they linked up with the 47th Royal Marine Commando at Port-en-Bessin mopping up some enemy positions on the way. Late in the day, the Devons attacked a chateau to the south of Port-en-Bessin, and captured it with 40 prisoners.
    The Dorsets now temporarily left the Brigade and came under command of 8th Armoured Brigade, which was still without its motor battalion. This force moved through the 50th Division bridge- head just north of Loucelles on the 8th of June, with the object of seizing the important feature known as Pt.103, northeast of Tilly-sur-Seulles, on the road to Villers Bocage. Now began an exciting four-day operation during which time the force was well in advance of the remaining troops of the Normandy bridgehead, drawing upon itself immediate hostile attention. The Dorsets, supported by the 4/7th Dragoon Guards, fought their way south of Loucelles, and continued somewhat precarious mopping up operations in Audrieu throughout the night. As a result of these efforts we were able to seize Pt.103, on the 9th, and the whole Armoured Brigade, with the Essex Yeomanry (147th Field Regiment) occupied this commanding position. The enemy, with the 12th S.S. Panzer Division with their Mark VI. Tigers in the forefront, made repeated counter-attacks from the south, south-east and east during the next three days, but we stood firm and the Germans were "seen off". "Tiger Hill”, as it become known, was a hot spot in those days!"



     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2022
  16. IanTurnbull

    IanTurnbull Well-Known Member

    I have probably missed something earlier but how can we be certain there were no Tigers until the 13th June?
    This is from the June 11th WD for 147 Fd (Essex Yeomanry)
    upload_2022-2-1_9-47-14.png
    I know every gun is an 88mm so perhaps its the same with Tigers?
    Ian
     
  17. ltdan

    ltdan Nietenzähler

    The Tiger and the Mk IV have quite considerable visual similarities. An infantryman can hardly be blamed if he cannot perform flawless recognition under the extreme stress of combat conditions.
    I know from my own experience from a comparatively relaxed maneuver with the Polish "colleagues" of the 17th mechanized brigade in 2002 that even a puny BMP gets pretty scary dimensions when such a vehicle is rattling towards you while you only have a rifle yourself.
     
  18. m kenny

    m kenny Senior Member

    The first Tiger Unit to reach Normandy went into action the next morning. It was a very famous engagement at Villers Bocage (13/6/44) and its movements are well recorded. There is no possible way a Tiger could have been spotted before that date and you can discount any suggestion of 'stray' Tigers wandering around Normandy.
     
  19. Andreas

    Andreas Working on two books

    Air bursts make it more likely to be 88s though (no guarantee however), and they were veteran gunners, so suppose they'd know the difference.

    Other than that, what Itdan said.

    All the best

    Andreas
     

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