Green Howard 7th Battalion Solerno & Monte Cassino

Discussion in 'User Introductions' started by Popswar, May 2, 2012.

  1. Popswar

    Popswar Junior Member

    I am fortunate the my father JOHN known as JACK LENNIE is still alive, now age 95, Army No 13056145
    He was with Green Howards Yorkshire "C" Company, 7th Battalion and did "D Day +1", Monte Cassino and Salerno and several others with some very interesting stories still being told for myself and his grand children. Also 175 Co Pioneer Corps??
    He has several letters between friends at the time.
    We are really keen to learn more about his actions and he is keen to find what happened to his friends :-
    Jimmy Bradshaw ( his family had a transport business believed to be around Preston or North Manchester)
    Tommy Broadhead
    Charlie Burgan
    Bert Hill
    We also have photographs of 3 friends dated 1941 :-
    Reg turner
    Bert Christie
    Tom Fairclough

    Not sure where to start on this trail but would welcome all comments, especially re Jimmy Bradshaw.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018
    Bazooka Joe likes this.
  2. 4jonboy

    4jonboy Daughter of a 56 Recce

    Hello and a warm welcome to the forum.
    It's great that your father is still telling stories to you. If it is not too personal perhaps you would like to tell us about some of them? We are very interested in the stories that veterans can tell us. Could you also post any photos that you have of him.

    Look forward to seeing your posts and good luck with your research.

    Lesley
     
  3. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  4. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    Hello and welcome to the forum
     
  5. Popswar

    Popswar Junior Member

    Thanks for this info Owen. I will search for the names. The war diary is fascinating and I will try to find out more re the link between D Day +1 and Cassino stories.

    Sequence of events is UK to Africa, at Algiers, to Sicily, to Salerno beach landings, to Monte Cassino, Left by ship from Naples to UK South coast, to D-Day +1 at Gold Beach, back to UK then was destined for Far East but was turned back as ship was full - subsequently torpedoed and sunk with total loss in the last few weeks before end of war.

    I have found a war grave for James Bradshaw at Salerno 12/09/43, just 3 days after the landing, family from Blackburn. Sadly this could well be dad's friend Jimmy. I will try and find out when they last were together.
     
  6. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  7. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Popswar,

    Your father's service number is from the Pioneer Corps block of numbers.

    James Bradshaw's :poppy: casualty details have him with the 1/4th Bn Hampshire Regiment, which along with the 2/4th and 5th Bn's Hampshire Regiment, formed the 128th Infantry Brigade; known as the Hampshire Brigade. I believe the 1/4th served with 1st Army in N Africa, and were with the 8th Army at Salerno and Cassino; which all fits so far.

    Similarly, the 1st Bn Hampshire Regiment, along with the 1st Bn Dorsetshire and 2nd Bn Devonshire Regiment, formed the 231st Infantry Brigade, and were the only brigade of the 50th (Northumbrian) Division to land on mainland Italy at Porto San Venere on 8 September 1943.

    The 128th Infantry Brigade stayed on in Italy, whereas the whole of the 50 Div moved back to the UK for preparations for D-Day. The 50 Div included the 1st Bn Hamshire Regiment, 231st Infantry Brigade and the 7th Bn Green Howards, 69th Infantry Brigade.

    Was he transfered from the Hampshires - possibly 1/4th to 1st then - to the 7th Bn Green Howards prior to D-Day. If so, why did he land on D-Day+1, when the 7th Bn were in the first wave of an assault brigade on D-Day - was he a replacement?

    Do you have his service records, as these should give 'chapter and verse' on his postings?!?

    All fascinating stuff and I look forward to hearing from you.

    Best,

    Steve.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  8. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Steve Mac

    The 8th Army was not at Salerno - with the exception of 5th Div who sped up to assist but too late as the problem had been solved when the 16th panzers moved over to the Termoli area

    The British X corps was involved at Salerno under the command of US 5th Army
     
  9. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Popswar/steve mac / Owen

    lots of confusion here - he went to Algiers - 50th Div was in Desert and Tunisia - he then went to Sicily - with whom ? 46th Div .? who went to Salerno and on to NEAR Cassino-
    7th Green Howards were with 50 Div - who went back to UK in OCT '43 - from SICILY !

    Service records are needed here....
    Cheers
     
  10. minden1759

    minden1759 Senior Member

    Popswar.

    46 BR Inf Div - of which 128 Inf Bde were part, were at Salerno on 9 Sep 43 and at Cassino on 19 Jan 44. Their contribution at Cassino was to attack Sant Ambrogio on the left flank of II (US) Corps on 19 Jan 44 in preparation for 36 US Inf Div attack across the Rapido on 20 Jan 44.

    Regards

    FdeP
     
  11. Popswar

    Popswar Junior Member

    Hi all. Thanks for your comments.
    We have just spent some time with Jack ("Pop" to us) and have a detailed listing of his movements plus several photographs, campaign medals. My daughter is scanning and I will post shortly.

    How do I obtain his Army records ?
    Should I move this discussion to a more appropriate thread? or is it ok to continue here?

    From his memory, which seems clear, known movements are :
    Preston, to Liverpool, to Algiers, to Bizerta, Sicily, Italy (Monte Cassino and Salerno), to Scotland (Greenock), to London (Blitz mentioned), to Preston, to Bicester to Southsea, to France (Arromanches, Bayeau, Caen), to Belgium (Bruge), back to England - (in his words :- time about 5 years mileage unknown !)

    Some good (ish) news on his friend Jimmy Bradshaw - it is NOT the James Bradshaw war grave at Salerno. Jimmy DID return to England and was demobbed and came from Kirkby Lonsdale. We have Jimmy's photagraphs, a several letters, and now his service number (13056185) to follow up.
     
  12. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  13. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Agreed, Tom. Ex-8th Army unit involved, i.e. 7th Armoured Division, but not then 8th Army.

    Best,

    Steve.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  14. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Tom,

    I thought from the information originally provided about his mate, James Bradshaw, that he had been with the 1/4th Bn Hampshire Regiment at Salerno and Cassino, and had then been transferred to 7th Green Howards. There are reasons why this could have happened...

    However, it now appears that the 1/4th Bn Hampshire Regiment trail was a false one; which leaves us all guessing how he could have been at Salerno and Cassino, and then at Gold Beach on D-Day.

    I do recall that Jim (Verrieres) once commented about someone from the 6th, 8th or 9th Bn's Durham Light Infantry - again 50 Div - landing at Salerno and he couldn't understand why. I will try to find that Message and if successful will revert.

    I totally agree that the FULL service records are needed here; and all should be revealed.

    Best,

    Steve.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  15. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Steve mac - couldn't agree more about the records as we have too many in with their 2 cents worth just muddying the waters - and the IP being adamant that the man was at both Salerno and Cassino -then D Day ! - on my recollection the 46th were at Salerno - but only NEAR Cassino as the Rapido / Gariliano was NOT Cassino but only NEAR - Too many people claim to have been at Cassino when they were only close to the rivers--
    we were at Presenzano some 15 miles south of Cassino- then on moving forward we by-passed Cassino into the Lirl Valley - but I would never claim to have been at Cassino per se .....which essentially means the three initial battles before Operation Diadem and the Liri Valley battles of the Gustav/ Hitler lines.....different ball game

    Cheers
     
  16. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Tom,

    I find that the term 'I fought at Cassino' is used for the Italian campaign in the same way as 'I fought at Dunkirk' is used for a lot of references concerning the BEF. They are names that have been latched on to explain that someone was 'over there'. We will have to wait for the service records to confirm if Jack was actually there or somewhere nearby.

    Best,

    Steve.
     
  17. minden1759

    minden1759 Senior Member

    Steve & Tom.

    Strictly speaking, 46 BR Inf Div attacked the Gustav Line. Sant Ambrogio can easily be seen from Monastery Hill, and was a crucial part of 36 US Inf Div's failure to get across the Rapido, but I accept that it is not Cassino proper.

    Regards

    FdeP
     
  18. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Popswar,

    It looks like Jimmy Bradshaw was also in the Pioneer Corps, as his number is very similar to Jacks. I wondered if they served together in the Pioneers in Italy? I will have a look at this tomorrow, if no-one has commented in the meantime!

    Best,

    Steve.
     
  19. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Minden
    pleased that you accept that the attack by 46th Div on the Gustav Line was NOT the Cassino battles proper- as the Gustav Line stretched from Coast to Coast - with the Cassino Monastery being the key Fortress - the 46th Attack failed which caused Walker to denigrate the Commander of 46th Div who apologized to him for failing to "open the gate" for 36th US to run into the Liri Valley- which held the misnamed Gustav and Hitler lines- long before Diadem...
    Cheers
     
  20. Popswar

    Popswar Junior Member

    Duchess_of_Richmond_at_Algiers_1942.jpg Just found an incredible picture of Duchess of Richmond alongside at Algiers with troops disembarking. they later moved on to Salerno.
    The picture is just clear enough to identify Pop - Jack Lennie, Jimmy Bradshaw, Billy Bernnett and Sgt Bert Cross watching events from the stern, just as he had described them.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018

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