Help with Marion's Dad's Service Record

Discussion in 'Service Records' started by PeteT, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Pete
    the fact that he was in Xth corps makes it easy to follow the US 5th Army as they landed at Salerno on the 9th Sept 43 - and were with them as far as ROME - then 56th high tailed it to Egypt for a

    rest - not sure where 46th went but both reappeared at the Gothic line with V corps on the Metauro next to our Canadian Divisions on August 25th '44 through Gemmano to the Argenta Gap etc

    46th went on to Austria and finished up in Greece late in '45......my best guess would be 46th Div as they were with 1st Army from it's landing at Algiers whereas 56th came from

    Egypt to join 8th Army at Enfidaville in the later Tunisian conflict before they both joined Xth Corps for Salerno

    Cheers
     
  2. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    Thanks once again Tom

    I am starting to work through your information and add to my knowledge by googling each step.

    As he joined 8th Survey Regiment on 1st May 1943, my understanding thus far is that he joined it after it had completed its role in the North African Campaign.

    At this time, he would have moved from the holding camp(s) to join the regiment (wherever it was based at the time) and as you say mobilised with it at the start of the Italian Campaign (The Orders of Battle suggest that the regiment were not part of the Sicily Campaign).

    I believe you are right in suggesting that the regiment probably were part of 46th Division so I am working on that basis for the time being.

    Regards

    Pete
     
  3. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Pete

    You will find that 46th Div played the part of "floating reserve" for Sicily but were unused and so became part of the invasion force for Italy of Xth corps attached to the US 5th Army for Salerno

    Cheers
     
  4. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    I have now managed to get hold of a book on the various survey regiments, which enables me to pick up this thread again.

    My start point is SETIF Camp, Algeria (1943). Does anyone have any information about this camp and/or photographs?

    I am also still keen to establish the locations of:

    2 CRU Corps Reinforcement Unit, North Africa (1943)
    1 GBD General Base Depot, North Africa (1943)

    Any help would be much appreciated

    Regards

    Pete
     
  5. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    Having used the excellent Larkhill's Wartime Locators to understand the movements of 8th Survey Regiment during the Italian Campaign I have a couple of very basic questions that I would like answers to if possible.

    I understand from Marion that her Dad was a driver who used to move the officers around on a motorcycle / sidecar.

    Firstly, if the officers were from Regimental Headquarters in Italy, would he have moved during the campaign or did the Regimental HQ remain in the same place?

    Secondly, what motorcycle / sidecar(s) was used for this purpose during this period?

    Any help would be much appreciated, as always

    Regards

    Pete
     
  6. hutt

    hutt Member

    Pete

    I have a copy of the diary of the No HQ 1 Gen. Rft. Trg. Dep 01 July 1943 - 31 December 1943 which has quite a few references to 2 CRU. The General Refit and Training Depot is listed as being based at Philippville Algeria in August 43. Many of the documents in the diary are marked to be copied to 2 CRU so I would assume they were not too far away perhaps although locations in Tunisia are also frequently mentioned.
    For instance on 11/08 14.30 Comd and G.S.O. II arrive 2 C.R.U. and on 12/8 at 09.30 Comd inspects 2 C.R.U. down to Coys
    If you are interested I'll post some of the sheets.
    Quite a few of the later entries refer to reinforcements passing through and being posted onto 'Baytown' and Avalance so straight to southern Italy I assume.
    My father had been through the unit earlier in the year.
    Graham
     
  7. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    Graham

    Thanks for your response; very much appreciated.

    Marion's Dad went through the depots in February 1943 (I GBD) and April 1943 (2 CRU), possibly at the same time as your father and slightly earlier than your diary entries.

    Based on feedback to date, I am erring towards Algeria as being the location for both of them and it may be that I will just have to draw the line and record them as such (using Tom's suggestions as possibles).

    Regards (and thanks again)

    Pete
     
  8. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    A final few bits and pieces on this one if I may.

    Can anyone decipher the lines 162/44 and 636/45?

    Re162/44: I know he was admitted to hospital and returned to unit but any thoughts on "58 FA (NBC)"?

    Regards

    Pete
     
  9. 4jonboy

    4jonboy Daughter of a 56 Recce Patron

    For info
    162/44 8 Survey Regt Adm. 58 F.A. (NBC) 4.2.44 and R.T.U. 8.2.44

    636/45 8 Survey Regt - I think it reads "To Class 1A"

    I think F.A. is Field Ambulance
     
  10. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    4jonboy

    Thanks for your quick response. I was guessing at Field Ambulance for that bit too ... do you know if we would be able to track down a location for it?.

    Regarding "To Class 1A" ... do you know what that means?. (It could relate to his movements back to the UK as he was disciplined at Southampton Docks on 2nd July)

    Regards

    Pete
     
  11. 4jonboy

    4jonboy Daughter of a 56 Recce Patron

    Sorry Pete I cannot help, maybe one of the Veterans will be able to help. I see Tom is keeping a close eye on this thread :)

    RTU - Reinforcement Training Unit (I think)
     
  12. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    No worries; my understanding is that RTU in this context is "returned to unit" but I may be wrong

    Regards

    Pete
     
  13. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Pete

    You have it right - RTU - Returned to unit

    Cheers
     
  14. Andy H

    Andy H Member

    Hi

    I notice he went AWOL for just over 3hrs :D
    Reminds me of when I went 'technically' AWOL even though all my Regiment had gone home for the weekend
    whilst I had finished a course on the Friday evening (some 200miles away). They expected me to report back
    at barracks late on Friday night just so I could be dismissed for the weekend, and then travel 150 miles back home,
    rather than the 50 miles from where the course was being held to my house :rolleyes:

    Regards
     
  15. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Andy H

    The point being of course is that you were a card carrying member of the British Army and therefore expected to do as you were told and NOT go AWL

    Cheers
     
  16. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    A couple of questions if I may, one being a needle in a haystack challenge for you all and the other a mechanical one.

    Firstly, the needle in a haystack challenge: Does anyone know where the first photograph may have been taken? He was in Tunisia and Italy, so I am guessing the former (although the photograph is titled "dad in Italy"). I am not really expecting an answer, but thought I would throw out the challenge.

    Secondly, could anyone identify the makes of the motorbike and the jeeps in the second photograph?

    Regards

    Pete
     

    Attached Files:

  17. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Pete

    the first photo looks more like Florence - as Tunisia didn't have too many Cathedrals being mainly Muslim an' all

    Cheers
     
  18. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    Thanks Tom ... I was more focussed on the tower which I assumed was Minaret (with the other structure a Mosque) .... but a quick look on Google suggests you may be right with Florence. I will have a look on Google Earth when I get the chance to see if I can match the location.

    Thanks again

    Pete
     
  19. hutt

    hutt Member

    Most definitely Florence and probably taken from the Piazzale Michelangelo. The fact that so many buildings are visible (and still today) shows just how fortunate we were that the city was not fought over and the destruction was mainly confined to German demolitions in the areas in the immediate vicinity of the bridges.

    My father had a week in Florence in March 45
     
  20. PeteT

    PeteT Senior Member

    Hutt

    Thanks for the response; much appreciated as always.

    I now need to see how Florence fits into his story, as it may help identify which particular unit he was serving with whilst in Italy.

    Regards

    Pete
     

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