Inns of Court Regiment, D-Day

Discussion in 'NW Europe' started by camal697, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. Trux

    Trux 21 AG Patron

    Camal,

    Sorry I missed the post or 4th November. Halftrack M5 are specified in the Landing Table but it is not necessarily so. The tables were made in March and no more recent ones have come to light. M14s were certainly more readily available. I will look further.

    I have so far only looked at Sword in depth and am only now looking at Juno.

    Mike
     
  2. Pigpen

    Pigpen New Member

    My grandad was blinded at Jerusalem crossroads while attached to the Engineers Their unit was destroyed by U.S. Airfirce Thunderbolts. I have some info if you still want it
     
  3. singeager

    singeager Senior Member

    Post it here would like to see what you have
     
  4. Wills

    Wills Very Senior Member

  5. My father, a Trooper in the Inns of Court Regiment, landed and crossed the dunes on D Day at Graye-sur Mer close to where Charlie 1 (the Churchill AVRE) is now located, see http://maps.google.com/?ll=49.33753,-0.4688&spn=0.00237,0.004007&t=h&z=18.

    Dad was Gunner / Wireless Operator in the Daimler Armoured Car (Dingo) that is mentioned by Singeager above. Dad has never been a lawyer. He ended up in the Inns of Court Regiment because he could drive, operate a radio and was good at morse code.

    The Dingo was hit by an 88mm shell (it did not drive over a landline) and Dad was injured in his leg and his right hand. He returned back to England the following day and was shipped off to Guildford for a couple of days and then to The Royal Hospital in Wolverhampton. The driver of the Dingo (Len) died when it was hit and Dad's other colleague (Pat) lost his leg and ended up in a ditch beside the road; Pat later died from blood loss and shock in the First Aid Point back on the beach. A Royal Engineer had hitched a ride on the back of the Dingo and it was many years before Dad met him. He got off the Dingo realising that he would be safer off it than on it.

    As to the story about the a German Officer being used a a human shield - Dad says if you have taken a hostage where would you put them? It would certainly be on top of the vehicle rather than inside it. Or would it have been better not to have taken the man hostage?

    As for Pigpen's Grandfather - I met him (Alex) on a couple of occasions. I real nice gentleman. It was tragic that the American's managed to target allied forces.

    As for England Phil's question about Trooper Tom Smith - he was killed along with Sjt Wright. The description in "Needs Must … The history of the Inns of court Regiment 1940 - 1945" reads:

    "Apart from a persistent sniper in the church tower at Banville, everything was comparatively quiet until 5A and 6A reached Villers le Sec. Large numbers of infantry were encountered here and a running battle took place at the far end of the village. 4 Troop had now joined the other two and, with 6A, was ordered to move north-east of Villers and by-pass the opposition. Throughout this encounter 88s had been shelling the village from south of the river, and Sqn. H.Q's entry was loudly heralded but in no way hindered. It set up in a field near the church and spent some time avoiding the attentions of elusive snipers, whom the R.S.M. eventually stalked and captured.

    "4 and 6A were now moving north-east unmolested, until their arrival at a crossroads, where they ran into infantry, bazookas and anti-tank guns. 4 Troop's Daimler was fired at twice by one of the guns, the second missile striking the end of the gun barrel and revolving the turret at an incredible speed. The crew were unhurt, though a trifle dazed. On the other route, 1, 2A and 4A had crossed the Suelles and were slowly pushing south. This was far from easy as infantry and armour were being spasmodically engaged on a scattered front. Recognition was poor, and very soon our own tanks scored a direct hit on Sjt. Wright's car, killing him and Tpr. Smith outright. 5 Troop then joined the others, but they were unable to make any further advance that day. [i.e. 6 June]"

    Regards
     
  6. Forgot to mention that Dad says he heard that the tank that fired on Sjt Wright's car, killing Sjt Wright and Tpr Smith, was Canadian.
     
  7. Matt69

    Matt69 New Member

    My great uncle also went ashore in D-Day so your father would have known him I guess .. Trooper Arthur Welch, known as Beckett .. he was involved in an incident that involved capture of German officer .. be went all the way to Berlin.
     
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  8. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot Patron 1940 Obsessive

    Was the officer strapped to the front of the vehicle?
     
  9. idler

    idler GeneralList Patron

    The officer strapped to the car is only part of it. Recce units were particularly ill-suited to taking prisoners, so what happened to the rest of the German artillery group was left to the imagination in all the accounts...

    It's worth searching for 'Cristot' threads as these may also touch on the incident.
     
  10. AB64

    AB64 Senior Member

    Chancing my arm here as its a bit off topic, can someone with the regimental history have a check for a Trooper Wallington? he was wounded 14/9/44

    Alistair
     
  11. Matt69

    Matt69 New Member

    Contact the Inns of Court regimental museum in London - was able to furnish me with info regarding my great uncle.
     
  12. 10StoneB

    10StoneB New Member

    My father used to be the ICCY regimental association Sec. Although well into his mid 80's now he has a vast array of records from the Boer War until the present day. I'd be glad to pass on a few requests to him.
    I have to say that the comment recounted by Andreas "a remark by my good friend John Salt that there was something very satisfying about lawyers being sent off in front to find the enemy, driving in thinly-armoured spamcans." is most offensive. I had the pleasure to meet many of the IOC veterans over the years, and many acts of outstanding bravery come to mind. These were not unique acts in the conflict by any means but thinking of them now, as I type from the safety of my office desk, still makes the hairs stand up on the back of my neck. I only hope that whoever John Salt is, he has the experience of dire combat from which to make such a remark. Even then it it is still crass.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2017
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  13. Matt69

    Matt69 New Member

    I agree - and my great uncle most certainly was no lawyer ... village rogue / poacher with an uncanny knack of driving or riding anything you gave him ... think he was picked for those skills ! Oh he was also a Dunkirk evacuee while serving in a different regiment.
     
  14. canuck

    canuck Token Colonial Patron

    Can you really be offended on someone else's behalf?
    It sounds to me like the typical inter-service banter, obviously with a broad generalization. That type of light hearted teasing was quite common and I'm sure there was no serious desire to see all the lawyers killed off.
     
  15. 10StoneB

    10StoneB New Member

    It is quite possible to identify a remark as being offensive without being offended yourself - logical symantics.
    That isn't banter, it's actually quite nasty. Would you wave off those same spam cans shouting that out to those men? No you wouldn't....not without risking your skin anyway.
     
  16. 10StoneB

    10StoneB New Member

    Spoke with my father about this today in the course of other IoC stuff. He's going to dig out the 'statements' (for want of a better word) of the 2 men who were in charge of the prisoner. Apparently as best he can remember the German officer was of high rank and the order was given to deliver him rearwards as soon as possible. So the idea that the cars went forward with him as a shield would be a bit of a nonsense. The German then attempted to escape and apparently a pistol was involved - how where or when I don't know at this time. He was at some point placed on the tool box on the front of the car accompanied by at least one member of the IoC. So again hardly a shield. There was no place for him in such as small car, and as dad said that means he either had to go on the front or over the engine bay. Quite simple really.
    From what he said over lunch today at least one of the 2 IoC soldiers is now dead (he went to their funeral!) so the most reliable source will be the 2 men's own written accounts. As soon as I hear back from him I will post more if it is appropriate.
     
  17. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    Hi, I thought I'd post up the Appendix in the 1 Corps orders that describe 'C' Sqn, Inns of Courts tasks on D-day. I hope they are of some interest:

    NEPTUNE
    BIGOT
    TOP SECRET
    Appendix ‘K’ to
    1 Corps Operation Order No 1
    dated 5 May 44


    ACTION OF ‘C’ SQN INNS OF COURT
    1. COMPOSITION

    (a) Comd Lt Col R.A.G. BINGLEY INNS OF COURT Regt
    2 IC Maj G.H.P. STRAKOSCH INNS OF COURT Regt

    (b) INNS OF COURT
    ‘C’ Sqn HQ
    Six tps

    (c) RE
    Ten RE demolition parties. Each of 4 RE, each in one M 14.
    The driver and co-driver of each M 14 will be found by INNS OF COURT Regt.

    (d) Vehicles
    Daimler Armd Cars 14
    Daimler Scout Cars 13
    White M 14 half-tracks 10
    White 4 x 4 Scout Car 1

    2. TIME OF LANDING
    The det will be loaded in two LCT (4) to be found by 3 Cdn Inf Div lift. It will be landed at H + 60 mins, or as soon after as practicable.

    3. ACTION ON LANDING
    (a) The force will land under comd 3 Cdn Inf Div on MIKE Beach and will infiltrate forward to the R ORNE as soon as the coastal defence crust has been broken.

    (b) An officer, to be appointed by 3 Cdn Inf Div, will be responsible for giving permission to ‘C’ Sqn to go. The most suitable officer would appear to be the comd Right Assault Bde. This officer will be instructed to let the det go, once he feels they have reasonable chance of getting forward. In this connection time is important and ‘C’ Sqn will be instructed to go once the enemy crust is broken and there is a gap through the beach minefields. It will not be held up owing to the presence of odd enemy patrols etc.

    4. ACTION AFTER PASSING THROUGH RIGHT CDN ASSAULT BDE
    It will be the duty of ‘C’ Sqn to reach the line of R ORNE as rapidly as possible.

    No attempt will be made to fight enemy opposition unless it should prove absolutely necessary; instead, whenever possible, enemy posts will be by-passed.

    / 5. TASKS
     
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  18. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    - 2 -

    5. TASKS IN GENERAL
    In order of importance:-
    FIRSTLY, to delay the adv of enemy reserve formations moving to counter attack our own tps to the WEST of CAEN.
    SECONDLY, Recce. Dispositions necessary to carry out this secondary role must on no account be allowed to prejudice the accomplishment of the primary task.

    6. POSSIBLE DIRECTION OF MOVEMENTS OF ENEMY RESERVES
    Details regarding the location of enemy reserve formations which can intervene on D and D + 1 days, together with an appreciation of the routes by which they may move, will be sent separately to the Comd.
    Under all circumstances enemy reserve formations moving to operate against tps of 1 Corps WEST of CAEN must pass through the line VIMONT – ST PIERRE SUR DIVES – FALAISE – THURY HARCOURT – AUNAY SUR ODON – VILLERS BOCAGE. Probably the greater part of this movement will take place between FALAISE and AUNAY SUR ODON.

    TASKS IN PARTICULAR

    7. DELAY
    (a) Line R ORNE
    The det will prepare for demolition, all brs over R ORNE from incl road bridge 937471 to incl road bridge 012609 as first priority and railway bridges from incl 967554 to incl 014597 as second priority. WITHIN EACH PRIORITY, PRIORITY WILL BE FROM SOUTH TO NORTH. Instructions are contained in para 8 below regarding blowing.

    (b) Line R ODON
    (i) In the event of failure to reach R ORNE, Force Comd will use demolition teams to create an obstacle on the line of R ODON between incl RAGNY 8759 and excl 964650, although this bridge and the one at 972652 will be included if opportunity offers.
    Priority will be given to the following crossings:-
    BOUGY 9160
    GAVRUS 9162
    931630

    (ii) In view of the probable ineffectiveness of R ODON as an A Tk obstacle, maximum use will be made of road cratering and mine laying.
    All vehs of the det will therefore carry Hawkins grenades.

    (iii) Bridges on the above line will not be blown, nor roads cratered without authority. (see para 9 below).

    8. RECCE
    (a) The penetration effected by the Sqn obviously will provide ample opportunity for the provision of useful information even after all the crossings over a particular river line have been blown.
    (b) If this situation presents itself, the opportunity will be taken to report the strength, composition and direction of enemy movement in the area, VIMONT 1561 – ST MARTIN DES BOIS 1354 – BRETTEVILLE LE RABET 1050 – BRETTEVILLE SUR LAIZE – CLINCHAMPS SUR ORNE 0056.

    / ON NO …
     
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  19. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    - 3 -

    ON NO ACCOUNT, however, are the dispositions adopted for recce to prejudice the successful blowing of the complete demolition belt.
    (c) It always will be necessary to watch possible enemy lines of approach to the WEST of R ORNE in order to guard this flank of the Sqn. In particular the following roads require watching:-
    (i) CONDE SUR NOIREAU 8832 – BOIS DU MONT D’ANCRE 8747 – CAEN.
    (ii) CONDE SUR NOIREAU – AUNAY SUR ODON 8351 – EVRECY 9259.
    But penetrations SW of the inter-Corps boundary are not to be deeper than are required for the protection of the det.

    9. ORDERS REGARDING BLOWING
    (a) As regards R ORNE
    All bridges on this line within the limits given are to be blown. They must not be allowed to fall into the hands of the enemy intact. If the situation allows, however, the comd may arrange that NOT more than two of the first priority demolitions shall be ‘final’ demolitions, the remainder being preliminary demolitions.

    The ‘preliminaries’ always will include the three bridges at THURY HARCOURT. If in order to blow the bridges any particular covering det has to be left EAST of R ORNE, this must be accepted. Such elements will be ordered to rejoin through the area of 6 Airborne Div; if they can carry out any useful recce function in the meantime, they will be ordered to do so.

    (b) As regards R ODON
    Demolitions on this line will NOT be blown without orders from the comd under which the det is operating at the time.
    This HQ may be either HQ 1 Corps, 3 Cdn Inf Div or 2 Cdn Armd Bde.

    10. DEGREE OF RESISTANCE
    Once the demolition belt on either line is blown the sqn will delay the enemy for as long as possible, gradually withdrawing and reporting enemy movement.
    The force finally will withdraw into Corps reserve area DOUVRES 0180.

    11. ACTION IF LINE OF R ODON IS NOT REACHED
    The primary task of the sqn will be to report strength, composition and direction of all enemy movement seen.
    Secondly, it will use its RE and explosives to the best advantage in the circumstances to delay the enemy.
    River and road bridges in the area NORTH of railway BAYEUX – CAEN will NOT be demolished.

    12. REPORTS
    (a) For report lines and various code words for objectives see Appx L.
    (b) As and when bridges are blown it will be reported in SLIDEX together with the width
    of the gap. Failures also must be reported.

    / 13. ACTION
     
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  20. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    - 4 -

    13. ACTION OF SAS AND SOE
    Certain operations are being undertaken by SAS and SOE on the night D – 1/D and thereafter.
    Details which may affect the situation have been sent separately to the comd.

    14. COMD
    The sqn will be under comd 3 Cdn Inf Div until Main 1 Corps opens ashore. Orders will then be issued from 1 Corps for command to pass to 1 Corps.
    During its period of comd however 3 Cdn Inf Div will not issue orders to the sqn which may be outside this directive without consulting 1 Corps.

    15. INTERCOMMUNICATION
    (a) ‘C’ Sqn Rear Link will be netted to 3 Cdn Inf Div B. When comd changes this Rear Link will re-net to a special net established from Main 1 Corps. 3 Cdn Inf Div will have a receiver available to listen on this special net.

    (b) All reports received from ‘C’ Sqn by 3 Cdn Inf Div will be passed by them to Main 1 Corps until after Command passes.
     
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