Identification of company / platoon, 4th & 7th oxford and buckinghamshire light infantry

Discussion in 'British Army Units - Others' started by Paul Round, Aug 14, 2018.

  1. Paul Round

    Paul Round New Member

    Hi guys
    My Grandfather was in the 4th & 7th oxford and buckinghamshire light infantry. Is there a way to determine what company / division? Doesnt seem to state on his war record.
    Thanks Paul
  2. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    Welcome to the forum.

    You will be lucky to identify his company/platoon (as per the topic title) unless you know the name of an officer who he served with as they will likely be named in the unit war diary and or may have received a gallantry award that you can research in the London Gazette.

    You should be able to identify Division ( as per the query in your post) by searching google as per below from Wikipedia -

    BEF 1940 - 4th Battalion Ox & Bucks were part of the 145th Infantry Brigade, part of 48th (South Midland) Infantry Division.

    7th Battalion - The 50th (Holding) Battalion were a hostilities-only battalion created on 3 June 1940, whose original job was to 'hold' men who were medically unfit, awaiting orders, on a course or returning from abroad.[91] In October 1940 the battalion was redesignated the 7th Battalion. In February 1941, they became part of the 167th (London) Infantry Brigade, serving alongside the 8th and 9th battalions of the Royal Fusiliers, both Territorial units, and were attached to the 56th (London) Infantry Division.[92]

    Shortly before departing the United Kingdom the battalion was inspected by General Sir Bernard Paget, Commander-in-Chief, Home Forces, an officer who had served with the regiment before and during the Great War and whose son Lieutenant Tony Paget would later serve with the 1st Battalion of the regiment. With the rest of the division, they left the United Kingdom in late August 1942. The division was sent to Persia and Iraq Command and the battalion later fought in the final battle in the Tunisia Campaign in April 1943. The battalion made a successful attack at Enfidaville following a 3,000-mile road move from Iraq. In the Italian Campaign, 7th Ox and Bucks took part in the landings at Salerno in September 1943 and then the Anzio landings in February 1944 and sustained heavy casualties in both landings and came under command of the US Fifth Army, led by Lieutenant General Mark Wayne Clark, in both landings.[93]

    In late March 167 Brigade, together with the rest of 56 Division, was transferred to Egypt to rest and be brought back up to strength. After the fighting at Anzio the 7th Ox and Bucks were reduced to a mere 60 men, out a strength of 1,000, testimony to the severe fighting in the beachhead.[94] Due to the casualties sustained the 7th Battalion was almost disbanded to allow the 1st Battalion, Welch Regiment, a Regular Army unit, to join the 56th Division. However, the 10th Battalion, Royal Berkshire Regiment, of 168th (London) Brigade, the junior battalion of the division and in an even worse state than 7th Ox and Bucks, was chosen instead, after that battalion had been reduced to only 40 men fit for duty.[95]

    Reinforced by large numbers of anti-aircraft gunners of the Royal Artillery who now found their original roles redundant, the battalion returned to Italy in July and fought in the severe battles around the Gothic Line near Gemmano, again sustaining heavy losses. Due to the recent heavy casualties, on 23 September 1944 the 7th Ox and Bucks was reduced to a small cadre and placed in 'suspended animation', transferred to the non-operational 168th Brigade and men were used as replacements for other infantry units in 56th Division, mainly for the 2/5th, 2/6th and 2/7th battalions of the Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey) of 169th (Queen's) Brigade. The reason for the disbandment was due to a severe shortage of infantrymen that plagued the British Army at the time, particularly so in the Mediterranean theatre.[96]

    More on 4th from t’internet

    4th Battalion, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -



    You can also use the forum search facility -
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
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  3. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    As Steve states, war diaries themselves often give names of officers but rarely other ranks. However diaries often contain appendices and these sometimes have regimental orders, best described as admin matters. These do quite often detail ORs and which platoon/troop they are in. Pre overseas service these may be attending courses or going for dental treatment etc and also transfers, as you must remember it is quite common for soldiers to move between units within a regiment.
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  4. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member

    It would be useful to have a name and dates to be able to assist.

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