Hermanville sur Mer (Sword Beach) picture, mid-1930s

Discussion in 'NW Europe' started by tmac, Oct 22, 2012.

  1. Arty

    Arty Member

    Back to the thread….Another post card comparison from Queen Red. The first is a rear view of “Maison de la Mer” taken pre war (pic from delcampe.net - the building has since been demolished). The second is another well known shot from the IWM - B5102 taken at 0840hrs from LCI(s) 519 carrying 1st Special Service Brigade HQ - touching down adjacent Road 23. Curiously the photo is credited to Sgt Mapham who landed from LCT610 just after 0810hrs - he must have been a bloody good swimmer & a brave man!!! Reality is it was taken by Captain Evans (who also took IWM's B5103).

    Arty
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Great find Arty! I've been looking for a postcard or photo of the Maison de la Mer for ages, but this one somehow escaped me. Fortunately it did not escape you! I guess one should check Delcampe twice a week so as not to miss such gems!

    I'm posting the seaside view of Maison de la Mer as found on page 14 of Tim Kilvert-Jones' book "Battleground Europe - Normandy - Sword Beach".

    Michel
     
  3. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    Back off the thread again...Sherman Crab Tac sign 2H has long since been deemed to be the mount of Corporal Agnew. The 22nd Dragoons history tells us: “The flails grounded on time, but in a few minutes Cpl Agnew's tank was hit three times in the engine compartment by armour piercing shells and burst into flames.” However the account doesn’t ring true. The very clear photograph of Sherman 2H (IWM B5192) taken on 07Jun44 depicts a vehicle that does not look like it was ever on fire. We can quite clearly see the rear, left hand side & engine deck - all of the tank’s markings are still intact. The Allied star on the engine deck in particular is completely intact. By comparison the numerous photographs taken soon after 1105hrs 06June of a knocked out Crab (possibly 1 troop 79 sqn RE) on Queen White adjacent COD's 7.5cm bunker clearly show a burnt out AFV (the photo below was taken by a crewman of US LCI(L)9 landing men of the Beach Group).

    And another, puzzle. I didn't think AVRE's were supposed to be submersible! However the two shots (one of which you posted) apparently taken a minute or so apart on 06June show 2 Troop 79 Sqn's Bobbin AVRE apparently emerging from the sea almost three hours after it was disabled...

    Artee
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Although Crab No.94 is indeed listed as Cpl Agnew's, I was also puzzled that the photo did not show any apparent sign of it having burnt, except the tiny lighter-coloured mounds down the side of the rear roadwheels, maybe rubber ashes from the wheel bandages. But the fire might very well have been inside the fighting compartment only, and of limited duration. Here's the account by Cpl Agnew (page 211 of 'Forgotten Voices of D-Day' by Roderick Bailey, Ebury Press 2009):

    "I ran slap-bang into an 88-millimeter gun emplacement which didn't take long to neutralise my tank. I was hit twice: one up the side and into the engine and one on the turret. The next thing we knew, we were standing in flames. The whole tank burst into flames. The only thing I could do was swing the turret round to make sure the driver and the co-driver could get out and I shouted, 'Bail out!' and we bailed out. I went along the sand dunes and there was another tank from another squadron and the commander had been sniped through the head. I came behind the tank and I shouted, 'Shove him out!' They shoved the body out and I got into that tank and went on."

    There must have been other hits or maybe mine explosions as the rotor is visibly slanting down towards the nearside.

    As for the Crab in front of COD's western 7,5cm bunker, I'm not sure it's burnt out. On the following photo, shot from the other side by Capt Stephen Sykes of 5 Beach Goup, there seems to be the tank commander's helmet protruding from his open hatch. The paraphernalia around the tank would indicate an Obstacle Clearance Crab (again from page 14 of Tim Kilvert-Jones' book "Battleground Europe - Normandy - Sword Beach"pages 126-7). However, until we get better prints of either photo, positive identification of this Crab seems problematic. My guess would be No.24 (L cpl Painter):
    Crab COD.jpg
    Good spotting again of 2 Troop 79 Sqn's Bobbin AVRE moving away! But this is not some unknown secret submersible version of the AVRE we see :)! Bobbin AVRE 2C was waiting at HWM while part of its crew worked dismounted, including Lt Nicholson who then got wounded. That is probably what British Pathé 1360.03.361-366 sequence shows:
    1360_03_363 - Notes.jpg


    The tank had sustained several hits, one of which jammed the loader's hatch thus making the Petard useless. The turret was jammed by a tow cable and the Bobbin itself was damaged and unusable. But after Lt Nicholson was wounded his tank was used by Lt Phillips of 4 Troop to tow away the SBG bridge and burnt out Log Carpet AVRE from the gap, to where they can be seen on B5191. Presumably the bobbin carpet was jettisoned there too, as it is visible on that same photo.

    So the two photos must be showing Bobbin AVRE 2C moving away from HWM after it has towed the Log Carpet AVRE and SBG bridge out of the way.
    B5191 vs CHAW p95 - Notes.jpg

    Michel
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
    stolpi likes this.
  5. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    Still off the thread…Regards Cpl Agnew & his account of the apparent demise of Crab 2H again we have an illustration of how information differs from War Diaries, Official Reports & Unit Histories. However, with ALL due respect for ALL the veterans I’m yet to see actual evidence of an actual “88”, in, or firing at the Sword area.

    Obviously when an armour piercing shell slams into your AFV you’re not particular interested in it’s muzzle velocity, nor are you going to pause to measure the size of the hole it’s made….

    Still on the subject of misleading information & ‘submersible’ AVRE’s the War Diary of 5 ARRE apparently states, in respect of 2 Troop 79 Sqn RE, states: “all the AVRE’s had been ‘scuppered’ and the bulldozer completed the gap…” The word “scuppered” quite unambiguously means “sunk” - however, once again the War Diary is apparently incorrect. Thanks for providing the real story.

    But wait there’s more…I stand corrected. What I thought was a burnt out Crab near COD’s 7.5cm bunker was apparently very much alive. Attached below are additional photographs taken around 1105hrs from US LCI(L)’s.
    The first was probably taken from LCI(L)12 (it appears on page 97 of R. Andersons “Cracking Hitler’s Atlantic Wall”) - at first glance the Crab appears to be on fire. In retrospect there’s probably something burning behind it on Queen White.

    The overlapping shots taken from LCI(L)14 show that the Crab has apparently moved away whilst the Beach Group guys (et al) were landing.

    And back on the thread! Another postcard comparison. The pre-war postcard (modified via Delcampe.net) depicts what was going to become Queen Green beach, between roads 7 & 8. And, the post battle comparison (which appears all over the net) - the derelict DD Shermans belonging to A Squadron 13/18 Hussars are 400 yards west of where they were supposed to touch down. The War Diary of 77 Sqn RE stating: “DD touched down to flank, giving little or no fire support…”

    Arty
     

    Attached Files:

    stolpi likes this.
  6. Arty,

    One might assume that this habit of calling every anti tank gun an "88" comes from the North African campaign when the only gun capable of knocking out a Matilda or Churchill at anything but point-blank range was the 88. This reminds me of French tankers calling every German gun a "77"... in 1940, doubtless a leftover from the Great War.

    Your photos taken from LCI(L)14 are excellent! Where did you find them? I know those on Navsource, but yours are not there? Are there any additional ones?

    13/18 Hussars seem to have spread their DD tanks all over the place, from Lion-sur-Mer to as far as the Orne estuary at Ouistreham. Attached are two post-war postcards showing what looks like a lonely DD stranded between the Caen Canal and River Orne. I wish we could read the turret number...

    Maybe it got there when attacking the lock gate at Ouistreham, or drifted off course during the initial assault.

    Finally, your comparison of the Maison de la Mer with B5102 rang a bell and I suddenly realised what some of the unidentified photos on another thread showed. See here:
    http://www.ww2talk.com/forum/royal-...maintenence-re-d-day-beyond-3.html#post575886

    Michel
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
  7. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    Unfortunately the three shots of Ouistreham are in fact three shots of Courseulles Sur Mer (ie. Juno area). The negative was apparently reversed at some point - I've re-posted it the right way round!

    Insofar as B Squadron 13/18th Hussars DD's are concerned I believe the most easterly touch down was probably on Roger Green - an account by M.E. Mawson (in Philip Warner's "The D-day Landings") suggests they got ashore near the wrecked LCT(A)'s 2052 & 2191 - both of which can be seen in the 1630hrs aerial photo.

    Arty
     
  8. Silly me! Serves me right for not checking the caption! Thanks for the correction, this makes much more sense now.
    Yes, Mawson's story correlates that of Peter Hutchins of LCT(A) 2191 to a dot. The shadow of the raised foredeck typical of LCT(A) is visible on both craft.

    Michel
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
  9. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    I neglected to point out that the additional photos of COD's 7.5cm bunker taken from US LCI(L)14 were forwarded to me some years ago by a colleague. I believe he found them on Wehrmacht-Awards.com - the photographer was a REME Officer probably attached to 27th Armoured Brigade.

    Meanwhile here's another postcard (from Delcampe again) & challenge for you! For want of trying I cannot locate it....

    Arty
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Thanks for the source for the photos from LCI(L) 14.

    Here are some more views of the Café/Hôtel de la Plage, in probable chronological order. It changed quite a bit over the years! The postcard you posted should be in position 2.1, i.e. around the same period as the view showing the gate and parked cars.

    I'm trying to locate it, so far without success. I guess it was located at la Brèche de Colleville (between Exits 26 and ROGER 2)...
    Apparently it does not exit any longer, and I suspect if might have been pulled down before D-Day by the Germans, just like many other villas in the area.


    Michel

    Cafe Epicerie de la Plage - Colleville.jpg
    Cafe Epicerie de la Plage - Colleville (2).jpg
    Hotel de la Plage 1 - Colleville.jpg
    Hotel de la Plage 2.2 - Colleville.jpg
    Hotel de la Plage 3 - Colleville.jpg
     
  11. More on 2 Tp 79 Aslt Sqn RE opposite COD:

    AFPU Cameraman Desmond O'Neill, on board LCT 853 (215), filmed a short clip just as his LCT was beaching. It appears on British Pathé stills 1360.03.352-357, 1941.05.239-240 and 2855.04.559-564. Recouping these with the after action reports and other photos (see the various posts above), we can safely conclude that the tank seen burning on the beach is Sjt Bartley's Log Carpet AVRE, which was hit at least four times:

    "ACCOUNT BY L SJT BARTLEY

    My account ties with that of Lt NICHOLSON as I was in the adjacent LCT.

    While on the br my AVRE sustained a shot on the LH pannier which did not penetrate but caused flaking. I ordered the driver to advance but the AVRE failed to move. A second shot came through this pannier and a third shot hit just below the turret ring but did not penetrate. A fourth shot penetrated the pannier opposite the battery recess and blew up a box of PHE. Some Besa amn also appeared to blow. The Gunner, wireless operator and I were all wounded in the leg but the remainder of the crew were unhurt and we all managed to bale out."

    Other accounts add some details:

    "The Br tk was hit on the bomb release which caused the br to fall and it could not be released from the AVRE. The A tk gun firing from the left was engaged by petard fire, but it was out of range and the shot
    failed to explode. At this time the first AVRE started to reverse in order to clear the flails and in doing so got stuck on the br. It was then hit several times and set on fire, the crew having to abandon it.


    Capt Desanges comd of the br AVRE jumped out and released the br. "

    " The leading AVRE from Capt Desanges’ craft (Sjt Bartley with boase bangalore and carpet) entered the gap and seeing that the sandbank was only low decided not to use the bangalore and move right handed behind the knocked out flail. Capt Desanges moved forward into the gap carrying the br when the release mechanism was hit and the br dropped, completely blocking the cleared gap.

    The Tp leader then ordered Sjt Bartley to use his boase Bangalore and carpet and this AVRE backed into the gap but mounted the fallen br and at this point sustained four hits from an 88mm. The crew baled out and the AVRE burnt out."

    Other vehicles are visible too, including, on the extreme right, Cpl Agnew's Crab 2.H:
    51.1 - Crab 2H - 2855_04_564.jpg
    51.2 - Exit 19 - 2Tp - 1941_05_240.jpg

    Cpl Agnew's Crab 2.H is also visible on this well known photo (Mapham's B5111). Since it was shot (from LCT 610 (212)) at about the same time as the above clip, from a position to the left of LCT 853 (LCT 211 to 216 landed in this order from left to right, as shown by the various photos and films), we must conclude that the burning vehicle is Sjt Bartley's AVRE, with Capt Desanges's AVRE between it and the camera:
    51.3 - B5111.jpg

    Michel
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
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  12. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    What a amazing thread regarding detail - still not as interesting as the shenanigans of May and June 1940 though :p

    Well done everyone ;)
     
  13. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    More great work on your part.

    Regards the Crab depicted on the right hand side of IWM B5111, I had long ago concluded that it wasn’t Cpl Agnews Crab 2H because it wasn’t on fire (as we discussed back in March). It seemed entirely incongruous to me that the Crab in the photo was a petrol engined Sherman, with a full ammo load on board, that had been reportedly hit & set on fire about 45 minutes before. However you’ve finally convinced me!

    Thanks for digging up the 79 Sqn narratives, they do indeed confirm just what was going on in IWM 55111 in front of Exit 19. I can’t help thinking however that the original intention was that 2 Troop was to put it’s Lane through to the left of the 5.0cm’s bunker. Either way, attempting to carve an exit right through the middle of the enemies main defensive position was always going to bloody difficult.
    Interesting to read that 2 Troop apparently attempted to use a Petard on COD’s 5.cm bunker. At a range of perhaps 100m the Petard was ineffective, whereas it proves a 5.0cm Festungspak could indeed cause major problems for an AVRE.

    There are numerous other vehicles that can be identified in B5111 & the British Pathe stills. In B5111 the vehicle sitting to the immediate left of Capt Desanges' AVRE is almost certainly a DD Sherman of B Squadron 13/18th Hussars - complete with the ‘chequerboard’ ID panel hanging off its rear. In the British Pathe footage the Armoured Bulldozer & M14 almost certainly belong to 246 Field Company RE, who have disembarked from LCT789 (213).

    And a question for you…You stated: “LCT 211 to 216 landed in this order from left to right, as shown by the various photos and films”. Did you mean LCT 210 to 216?
    I’ve always figured that 210 also landed on Queen Red & not on Queen White as planned.

    Regards
    Arty
     
  14. LCT 114 & 114A carrying 2 Tp's tanks were planned for beaching left of Exit 19 and at Exit 20 respectively, so it looks like they landed not too far off the mark. 2 Tp like all other troops was instructed to "attempt an exit at the most suitable point in the vicinity of the points above if they can reach them easily without running along the beach.
    If LCT touch down badly out of place they will attempt the nearest point in their front at which a gap seems possible."

    As 2 Tp leader Capt Desanges was killed during the action, we might never know where exactly he had planned to make a gap, but it would have been preferable for his troop to make directly for the 5cm bunker within its dead firing angle, as it was not covered by other anti tank guns, and throw a couple of dustbins from there, rather than reach the top of the beach just in front of the deadly 5cm's muzzle.


    I did not include 210 because I haven't found any photo to definitely confirm it, but yes, it is reasonably certain that LCT 210 landed to the left of LCT 211-216, probably near the planned beaching location for LCT 114.
     
  15. I agree on the DD, although one can't be absolutely sure whether it's from 'A' or 'B' Sqn. Also agree on the M14 on the BP stills, which has to be the 246 Fd Coy one from LCT 213: the only other half tracks planned to beach before or at this time were on LCT 213, 215, and 216 to 219. It obviously does not come from the camera craft LCT 215, and is heading right, towards QUEEN WHITE, so it should belong to one of the LCT planned for that beach (LCT 213, 215 or 216). There remains LCT 213 and 216, the latter probably being too far on the left for its M14 to have reached this position by the time the film was shot.

    For the same reasons, the dozer on the BP stills might be from LCT 213 too, with the peculiar exhaust pipes and stowage seeming to correspond with those of the 246 Fd Coy dozer as seen embarking on LCT 213 at Gosport:
    HHS74 p92.jpg

    Other possible IDs would be the dozer around the centre of B5111, which looks like it might be towing a porpoise or sledge, and could be the KO'd dozer of 2 Breaching Team visible on B5191, but I
    have some doubts about it, as the exhaust pipes and the location do not quite match. This dozer of 2 Team might be the object just below Crab 2H?

    Still on B5111, there is a Crab left of the DD tank, plus another Crab to the left of the picture, with possibly a Stuart behind it. Above it is a trailer, and left of it perhaps an AVRE.

    Identification of these Crabs is not easy, as there were quite a few around and very little is known about the actions of the Obstacle Clearance ones.

    Back to the DD tank, just left of it is an unknown squarish vehicle, probably another trailer with a more tidy stowage than the one on the left. It certainly looks too big and too tall for a carrier, even with extended wading sides. It might also be the Bobbin AVRE.

    Michel
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
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  16. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    Yep, there’s a lot going on in B5111..

    Regards the DD, despite the fact that I can’t quite make out it’s rego :) , it almost certainly doesn’t belong to A Squadron, which as we know landed spread out to the west from Queen White onto Queen Green. Indeed Captain Neave, 2ic of B Sqn 13/18th Hussars, states in his memoirs (in P Warner’s “The D-Day Landings” )… “We had landed opposite a huge gun emplacement which pleased me. It gave the impression that it was quite incapable of firing at us, since the gun embrasures were facing left and right…”

    As for the “squarish vehicle” on the left of 2 Troop, to my mind the Troop narratives that you’ve unearthed all but confirm it is Lt Nicholson’s Bobbin AVRE. I would go so far as to say that all of 2 Troop’s vehicles are somewhere in this shot - one of the Crabs depicted probably belonged to Sgt Cochrane.

    Meanwhile, I’m going to return to the theme of the thread briefly!

    The three pics I’m posting are the same location on Queen White, specifically Road 14 which became Blue Lane (aka Lane 6), which was successfully put through by 3 Troop 77 Sqn RE. The first is a pre war postcard from Delcampe looking due west. The second is a ‘slice’ of a US Airforce archives aerial photo taken around 1030hrs 06June, whilst the third shot depicts 3 Troops SBG still in place post battle (the last two pics can be found in After the Battle publications “D-Day Then & Now“).

    Arty
     

    Attached Files:

    Drew5233 likes this.
  17. Very nice and sharp aerial view Arty! The vehicle contours are well defined, the houses very clear, and we can almost read the LCT pennants :)! The complete photo can be found on fold3 here:
    http://www.fold3.com/image/251/42264936/
    but although it's scanned (photographed?) in high resolution, it's quite blurry as compared to your version. Does it come from the ATB magazine, because unlike in the book (vol.2 p.532), it's unmarred with notes?

    Unfortunately ATB's caption is incorrect. They probably deducted which troop laid which bridge from their assigned lanes or exits, but in the event things happened quite differently from the plan!

    3Tp 77 Aslt Sqn RE laid its SBG bridge not by Exit 14, but opposite Villa "Les Algues", to the right of Exit 12. This SBG bridge is clearly visible on the complete aerial view, which confirms the following narrative:

    "REPORT ON 3B by SJT NUTLEY RE
    (...)
    As we came off the ramp I could see it was going to be ticklish getting through the obstacles with the br, so we ran right through in first gear and had to stop several times for neutral turns. It was at this time that we lost sight of Capt CARRUTHERS and eventually contacted him about 10 mins later.


    We stopped just before gap No 12 and recced a site for the br, as we could see that Capt CARRUTHERS intended to follow the flails himself.
    (...)
    I left 3B complete with br at the entrance of the gap as Capt CARRUTHERS came running back with a damaged hand and asked me to see his tk through to the lateral. This I did, and left it at No 11 Gap in a bay, making that the tp rally.
    (...)
    I made my way back to 3B along the lateral and could see that we had plenty to do up there so after dropping the br, 3B made its way along the lateral dragging a Sherman from the 13/18 out of the path of the following traffic.
    "

    The zig-zagging between the obstacles probably accounts for the AVsRE reaching the top of the beach more to the right than planned.

    Now if not 3Tp 77 ASRE, which troop laid the SBG bridge by Exit 14? It can't be 2Tp 77 ASRE, who landed on QUEEN GREEN and laid their bridge there, to the right of 1Tp who jettisoned their bridge by the road side at Exit 11. It can't be 4Tp 77 ASRE either, whose SBG bridge did not land. SBG bridges of 2, 3 and 4 Tps 79 ASRE are also accounted for, none of them close to Exit 14.

    Therefore, although it's not immediately obvious from the various narratives, since unlike Sjt Nutley's they do not mention any Exit, the SBG bridge by Exit 14 was actually laid by 1 Tp 79 Aslt Sqn RE, which was supposed to touch down just left of Exit 18, but instead landed 200 yards to the right, thus presumably more or less opposite Exit 17.

    On the photo of the bridge with the '14' sign, the Log Carpet laid by AVRE 1A (Capt Cunningham OC 1 Tp) can be seen just beyond the SBG bridge laid by AVRE 1B (Sjt Young) opposite Villa "Les Sables". This gap however became blocked when Crab 1H, then AVRE 1A blew up on mines after successfully climbing the bridge:

    "SUMMARY OF BREACHING OPERATIONS

    I TP LDR – CAPT CUNNINGHAM RE

    Everything on board LCT went according to plan, air phs helping to indentify beach landmarks. When approx 1 mile off shore the OC and I spotted what we thought to be the landmark for No 1 tp lane. Observation became more difficult as we approached the beach owing to smoke etc caused by the bombardment. When we were about 500 yds off shore the smoke cleared and I observed that our craft was approx opposite the pt where I wanted to touch down, so I told this to the craft comd and mounted my AVRE. As the craft came into the beach it veered to the starboard and touched down approx 200 yds to the right of where I had hoped it would.

    The tp then disembarked in order IG, IH (flails), IA, 0A (OC’s AVRE), IB (Br) and IC (Bobbin). This disembarkation took place in between 3 and 4 ft of water.

    IG proceeded up the beach and started flailing just about water level. I called him up and he said that he suspected mines. Shortly after this there was an explosion, and he stopped. By this time all AVREs were off the craft and backing into the sea, and I was searching the beach for enemy opposition. IG being useless, I ordered IH fwd and followed in his tracks, instructing IG to cover our left where the enemy appeared to be firing. Under my directions IH now flailed up to the dunes, while I remained below HWM, and with IG engaged a pill box target on the left. My AVRE was twice hit low down. When the lane was ready I ordered IB to drop his br. He did so, and it appeared to fall low, but he could not improve it as I ordered because it had been struck by a shell.The comd (Sjt YOUNG) and some of his crew dismounted and freed the AVRE from the br, thus enabling IH followed by IA (Tp Ldr) to cross over the br. With the help of Sjt YOUNG’s party IA jettisoned his B Bangalore and drove over the br, dropping his log carpet at the top.

    In this manner the gap was made good. IH was flailing down the exit when he was blown up by a mine, so I ordered Sjt YOUNG to obtain mine detectors and proceed with clearance, while I contacted the sqn by W/T and asked for another flail. While proceeding down the beach on foot I found a flail sitting in water doing nothing, so I brought him up. He proceeded down the exit on the left of IH and I followed in his tracks in IA.
    As I passed IA [sic: IH], I encountered a mine and the tk was blown up : two of my crew who were marking the gap, received shock through blast.(...)"



    "SUMMARY OF BREACHING OPERATIONS

    BR TK – SJT YOUNG – 79 ASLT SQN


    (...) I then noticed that IG had stopped flailing, and on the A set heard Capt CUNNINGHAM order IH to proceed in front. I asked the W op what had happened to IG and he told me that he had been knocked out so I watched IH flailing and when he turned right at the bottom of the sand dunes I, acting under orders from the tp ldr, proceeded up the beach to drop the br. On the way the br was hit by a shell and some ribands and chespaling fell off, but the br, on my releasing the brake dropped quickly. Unfortunately it dropped 2 ft over the sand dune which broke away at the edge and slipped down the dune. I received a msg from Capt CUNNINGHAM to rewind the br, but I saw that it was well held and that tracked vehs would be able to cross it and gave orders to blow the bomb release. This was successful, but L cpl BORMAN and myself had to jump out and knock up the hooks by hand so that the tk could back out. I stayed on the beach, reversing the AVRE and returned to the right where the gunner L cpl BORMAN and myself cleared the cables and made the tk fit. IH attempted the br but missed it, so I stood at the top and directed him across. I noticed a sec of inf on top of the dunes.

    The flail went over and started working.

    With my crew, I assisted IA to drop his B Bangalore and he went over the br, dropping his carpet, but after proceeding a few yds he stopped as the flail had hit a mine and was blocking the exit."


    This bridge was however not a complete waste: it was turned into a shelter by Beach Gp troops, as can be seen on B5181 (looks more like a beach hut with tourists enjoying the sun, one of them with sunglasses) :)!

    57.1 - Beausejour.jpg
    57.2 - Vagues, Beausejour.jpg
    57.3 - SBG Exit 14 vs B5181 - Notes.jpg

    Michel
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
  18. Arty

    Arty Member

    Michel,

    I’m beginning to think I need to start again!

    PM coming your way.

    Arty
     
  19. Yet another view of the Hôtel de la Plage at Colleville-Plage:
    Hotel de la Plage 1.1.jpg

    Danny sent me some information showing that according to the book "Côte de Nacre", vol.II, Collection "Mémoire en Images" by Jean-Luc Kourilenko:

    "located on the now avenue du 4e Commando, behind the Redoubt, to the East, the café de Colleville-Plage near the sea was also acting as a grocery."

    The various postcards confirm that it was not located directly on the sea front but some way back, with a few small houses between it and the beach front. They also show that the "road" along the Café is not quite parallel to the building, which is consistent with the angled orientation of what is now avenue du 4e Commando. This photo must have been shot from or near Exit 3, the Hôtel de la Plage being between Exits 2 and 3 ROGER Sector, behind the 7,5 cm Bunker in strongpoint SKATE (Wn 18).

    Michel
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
  20. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Not seen this before - It's an appendix in WO 171/1381 1 Suffolks war diary for 1944.
    [​IMG]
     
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