My introduction

Discussion in 'User Introductions' started by read46, Feb 3, 2008.

  1. read46

    read46 Junior Member

    What a fantastic website, so informative, interesting and friendly.
    I taught in England for many many years and took early retirement in 2003 and am now living and working in western China.
    I am originally from the north east of England and my childhood memories in the late 40's early 50's are filled with tales of both wars in general but WW2 in particular.
    During family get togethers parents, grandparents, uncles, aunties would talk about their experiences and I would listen.
    One name kept cropping up, not a relation but the son of a neighbour.
    He had died during the war.
    With time on my hands here and little else to do than spend a lot of my time on the internet I decided to find out more about the 'son' of our neighbour.
    He is remembered on a local war memorial as simply E. Y. Adamson

    My search on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website shows

    Pte Edward Young Adamson.

    Service Number 4399392

    Special Air Service Regiment (AAC) B Sqd 1st

    Date of Death 7/7/1944

    Buried at Rom Communal Cemetary,

    I have found short references to Operation Bulbasket (the internet is my only source of reference) to the incident which occured at this time where a number (30) of his colleagues and an American Airman were involved.

    The result is that they are buried alongside him at Rom all with the same date of death.

    The village of Rom is in the Department of Deux-Sevres and is approximately 44 kilometres east of Niort and 5 kilometres west of the town of Couhe-Verac, which is in the neighbouring Department of Vienne

    Can anyone enlighten me further.
    Here in China I don't have access to books.
    Many many thanks.
    canuck likes this.
  2. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Old Hickory Recon

    Howdy Read, glad you joined.

    Being a Septic, I won't be able to help you much with your search, but there are some bright members here who can.
  3. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    Welcome aboard Read,
    Bulbasket sounds like an interesting bit of SAS activity in the Normandy assault, I saw a memorial to the phantom teams only recently.
    Good luck with your hunt.

  4. spidge


    Operation Bulbasket, which was launched on June 6, 1944. the objectives of the operation were for the 56 men of b sqd. 1st sas to slow down German reinforcements to Normandy, assist the French resistance (maquis), and provide intelligence for bombing runs. They were tragically betrayed by a german agent and surrounded by 500 Germans of an SS battalion. something like 34 members of b sqd., were captured and later executed by the SS. They were shot with sten guns to make their deaths look like a friendly-fire incident or worse. The officer responsible would later be sentenced to death for this crime during the Nuremberg trials.
    canuck likes this.
  5. read46

    read46 Junior Member

    Thanks very much for the welcome, I appreciate the warmness in your replies.
  6. read46

    read46 Junior Member

  7. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Sorry I'm a bit late saying "Hello."
    But...Hello & Welcome to the site.
  8. read46

    read46 Junior Member

    Again, thanks everyone.
    After reading so many interesting contributions throughout the website I feel a little insignificant in my request.
  9. Bodston

    Bodston Little Willy

    Hello read and welcome.. Op Bulbasket was a nasty business. From 'The IWM book of War Behind Enemy Lines' by Julian Thompson
    The final SAS party to drop on the eve of D-Day, was to set up Operation Bulbasket near Poitiers. Their task: to disrupt the railway lines Limoges-Vierzon-Poitiers-Tours, which German formations stationed in southern France would use to reach the Normandy battlefront. Before the main body arrived, thanks to the Resistance they located their first target, consisting of eleven trains of petrol wagons in a siding at Châtellerault. The radio message from the Bulbasket team resulted in the total destruction of all eleven trains of this vital commoditity by twenty-four Mosquitoes of the RAF, RNZAF and RAAF. The loss of this fuel was to impose serious delays on the move north of 2nd SS Panzer Div (Das Reich). For the next three weeks the Bulbasket team cut the railway line in twelve places. They carried the demolition teams to widely dispersed points on the rail system, in jeeps dropped to them. At the end of these three weeks, most of the Bulbasket team were at their base in the Forêt de Verriers when they were attacked by a large force of Germans. The SAS, armed only with .45 pistols and a few Vickers K guns on their jeeps, were no match for mortars and dozens of machine-guns which blasted and raked their camp. Only eight SAS men survived by escaping in the confusion, including Captain Tonkin, the commander of the team. Thirty-one including four wounded, were taken prisoner by the Germans, One of the wounded, Lieutenant Stephens, was tied to a tree in Verriers, and after the villagers had been paraded past, the Germans beat him to death with their rifle butts. All the others were shot.
    canuck likes this.
  10. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Welcome to the forum Read hope you enjoy it here.
  11. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Army number, 4399392 , shows he enlisted into the
    The Green Howards 4379001 - 4435000 .
  12. spidge


  13. read46

    read46 Junior Member

    Many thanks for everything.
    Back home in the UK (as previously mentioned I live and work in western China now) I have many many photographs taken by my father during the war.
    He served in the RAF as ground crew and spent much of the time in maintenance units in the north of England, Scotland and the Middle Esat.
    There are many pictures of him recovering aircraft from crash sites in the Middle East and some particularly good ones of German aircraft in various states of 'destruction'.
    I will endeavour to scan these and put them on the website for others to enjoy.

    One point of interest that I remember from my fathers service records is that he served with 2TARU, with my limited skills in 'cyber' research I can find no reference. This would have been served at a base in Egypt, perhaps Kabrit or Kasfareet. Could I assume it refers to a Transport Repair Unit?

    One story that my father used to tell me, time and time again.
    Before the war he grew up in a small hamlet/village in Northumberland. His best pal, John Younger ' Harry' and he were about the same age.
    My fathers family were friendly with a prominent local woman, Constance Leathart who used to take my father with her to Cramlington airfield where she flew.(she later made a bit of as name for herself delivering aircraft during the war) My dad used to help the mechanics there and enjoyed working on aircraft.
    As war beckoned my father anticipated the 'call up papers' and enlisted in the RAF and was sent off to Padgate and then Hednesford.
    Harry remained in employment and sure enough, after war was declared, he was called up.
    They kept in contact until finally my father was posted abroad, via Bombay, Iraq and Palestine he ended up in Egypt.
    One particular day, while on leave in Cairo, he heard his name being shouted from amongst the throng of servicemen who were trudging the bazaars..
    To my dads absolute surprise it was his pal, Harry. They had photographs taken together and parted company promising to keep in touch.

    but they never did...........................................................

    Name:YOUNGER, JOHNInitials:JNationality:United KingdomRank:PrivateRegiment/Service:Argyll and Sutherland HighlandersUnit Text:8th Bn.Age:23Date of Death:16/05/1943Service No:2987024Additional information:Son of William and Margaret Younger, of Downham, Northumberland.Casualty Type:Commonwealth War DeadGrave/Memorial Reference:12. G. 36. Cemetery: El Alia

    I fully realise there must be hundreds of such stories to be told but never the less, that is one of mine.

    :huh: I hope the CWGC don't mind me copying the info they hold!
    Owen likes this.
  14. spidge


    In the RAF:

    Transport Aircraft Repair Unit
  15. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    To my dads absolute surprise it was his pal, Harry. They had photographs taken together and parted company promising to keep in touch.

    but they never did.....

    Lovely but sad story.
    RIP Harry.
    Just one thing, have you a date for this episode?
    As 8th Argylls would not have been in Egypt, they landed in Algeria with 78th Div, 1st Army.
    I wonder if he was posted to them after being wounded with Argylls in the 8th Army.

    Date Harry died 8th Argylls were on Hill 667 north-east of Medjez-El-Bab.
  16. read46

    read46 Junior Member

    Lovely but sad story.
    RIP Harry.
    Just one thing, have you a date for this episode?
    As 8th Argylls would not have been in Egypt, they landed in Algeria with 78th Div, 1st Army.
    I wonder if he was posted to them after being wounded with Argylls in the 8th Army.

    Date Harry died 8th Argylls were on Hill 667 north-east of Medjez-El-Bab.

    Owen, thanks for the informative reply and for the interest, I greatly appreciate it.

    My father, from information that was given to Harry's mother regarding the circumstances, lead me to believe that Harry contracted an illness/disease and or was wounded and didn't recover.

    I would love to find out more and dearly wish that as a youngster I had listened more attentively to those first hand stories of WW1 and WW2 that were told during family and friend get togethers during the early 50's.
  17. read46

    read46 Junior Member

    In the RAF:

    Transport Aircraft Repair Unit

    Thanks for that confirmation. I have a medal ~'Geneifa Cricket League Winners 1944' ~ engraved with my fathers name

    Geniefa Cricket League Winners 1944
    R Dawson
    No 2 T.A.R.U

    I wonder where, near Geneifa, they were stationed/based?
    He did talk about building sailing boats, playing cricket, trips to Ismalia, the pyramids and making brass ashrays engraved with palm trees!!
    I miss him!!
  18. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    Snippet from the web:
    No 161 MU
    Formed 11 May 1943 from No 5 (Middle East) Aircraft Repair Unit at Fayid. Redseignated No 2 Transport Aircraft Repair Unit on 1 March 1944.

    111MU & 161MU [Archive] - Key Publishing Ltd Aviation Forums

    Though I currently can only find a reference to No.3 TARU here:
    (RAF organisations definitely not being my thing ;) .)
  19. read46

    read46 Junior Member

  20. Dont frequent this board very often as I study the other war but came on to do a search on "Bulbasket".

    I was at Rom at the end of September. A member of our party had been the girlfriend of Eddie Adamson!!


    Jonathan S

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