IWM Audio - Tunisia/Italy campaigns.

Discussion in 'Italy' started by bexley84, Mar 9, 2015.

  1. bexley84

    bexley84 Well-Known Member

    I just spotted this 5 reel audio interview (total 2 1/2 hours) with Harry Corfield, who served with the Royal Irish (NOT the Inniskillings as noted by the IWM) Fusiliers from 1940 to 1946..including sections on the campaign in Tunisia, describing various events for 78th Division in Italy until Harry was captured at Monte Spaduro on 20th October 1944 and thence off to PoW camp in Germany.... Seemingly, Harry was even arrested during the Cairo "riots" of August 1944.

    Some of the memories are not always precisely clear but, all in all, a pretty interesting listen; no doubt his sentiments are familiar to a number of forum members. Of course. Harry followed a similar path (apart from the "shipwreck" at Gib and being captured at Spaduro) to my father and coincidentally the MiD was published in the London Gazette on the same day as my Dad's in July 1945.

    The link:

    Summation on interview:

    REEL 1:
    Background in Aston, Birmingham:family; education;
    4/1940; reported to Fulwood Barracks Preston; posted to 1st Bn Royal Irish Fusiliers.
    1941-1942: posted to Rye, Kent; coastal defence duties at Camber Sands;
    Posted to Cumnock, Scotland; description of assault course and firing trench mortar;
    Embarked at Liverpool, 11/1942.

    REEL 2
    Aspects of voyage to North Africa, 11/1942:
    Accommodation aboard ship; memories of stopover in Gibraltar; disembarked at Bougie, Tunisia.
    Memories of Christmas, 12/1942;
    Location of Bn entrenched on Grandstand Hill;
    German night attacks on Grandstand Hill;
    Role in operations at Djebel el Mahdi and Djebel Tanngoucha;
    Memories of CO John Horsfall;

    REEL 3
    Story of injuring arm in accident, 5/1943; medical treatment at hospital in Algiers;
    returned to 1st Bn and posted to Italy, 10/1943.
    landed at Taranto; rejoined regiment at Termoli;
    description of capturing ridge in River Sangro area; prisoners;
    moved to Monte Cassino area;

    REEL 4
    Role in operations at Lake Trasimeno; story of finding buried box of jewels;
    Memories of leave in Cairo, Egypt;
    Description of night attack on Monte Spaduro;
    Story of being captured by Germans, 10/1944.
    Aspects of period as POW in Italy, 1944:
    Description of journey in cattle truck to Germany.
    Aspects of period as POW in Stalag VII A, Moosburg, Germany, 1944-1945:

    REEL 5
    Memories of Christmas celebrations, 12/1944;
    Story of liberation by American troops, 5/1945; returned to GB.
    1945-1946: leave; reception on return and attitude of civilians;
    Posted to Loyal Regt in Bielefeld, Germany;
    Question of remaining in Army; returned to Barnsley for completion of demobilization, 1946;
    Problem of adjustment to civilian life; effect of war on nerves; employment.
    Mentioned in Dispatches, 7/1945;
    Opinion of officers; story of padre; religious beliefs; opinion of training; deserters; opinion of Americans; importance of comradeship.


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