NIJMEGEN BRIDGEHEAD: II.SS Pz Corps' counterattack in October 1944

Discussion in 'NW Europe' started by stolpi, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    Again, as for three years ago with the reburial of Pte Lewis Curtis (see post #23 of this thread NIJMEGEN BRIDGEHEAD: II.SS Pz Corps' counterattack in October 1944), an impressive ceremony this morning.

    This time there were no relatives of the deceased soldiers present. But there was ample attention from the public and a delegation of the British Army: about 150 people turned up, including a school class of children from one of the primary schools in Arnhem, they put flowers on the grave. Soldiers of the 5th Battalion the Rifles performed the military honours.

    Already in de local newspaper (own photo's follow): Britse soldaten herbegraven in Oosterbeek
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2020
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  2. Nijmegen

    Nijmegen Member

    Cold, it was so cold. 1.jpg 2.jpg 3.jpg 4.jpg

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  3. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    Last edited: Oct 8, 2016
  4. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Really appreciate the respect paid to these two soldiers by Pieter and Nijmegen, and those that attended the burials.

    I have never really understood the Dutch. Always the noisiest b*ggers at any event I attend through work and way OTT , but I don't get along better with any other nationality. One of my very best mates is Dutch and I have family that is Dutch. Love 'em all!
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  5. Nijmegen

    Nijmegen Member

    I can assure everyone, that Stolpi and I do not belong to "the noisiest b*ggers". But, we do have our charm. :)
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  6. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    Inserted new pictures to posts #13, 15, 31 and 56 and improved the map in post #21
  7. karlmcd

    karlmcd Junior Member

    Hello, I was interested in this specific post as I am investigating the disappearance of one TPR W Dransfield of the Sherwood Rangers.
    According to the Regiments Padre, in his notebook, dated 24th September 1944 east of Nijmegen, Tprs. Greenwood and Dransfield of B Squadron were reported KiA, but four days later on the 28th and marked in the notebook, Tpr.Greenwood did show up and return to the Regiment, with no sign of Tpr.Dransfield. The Padre does however add a note ' (Later KiA)'
    We have no Tpr.Dransfield listed on our Roll of Honour, and I have been unable to find any memorial or grave, except Walter Dransfiled listed in your post...killed Oct 4 with the DLI.
    You also mention that the Battalion listed 12 men killed but you have found 14, including the RAMC, could your Dransfield be my Dransfield and somehow he could not or decided not to rejoin the SRy and joined the DLI ?? Only to be killed a week later?
    Have you any further info on Dransfield?...many thanks..k

  8. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    DLI Dransfield
    UK, Army Roll of Honour, 1939-1945
    Name: Walter Dransfield
    Given Initials: W
    Rank: Lance Corporal
    Death Date: 4 Oct 1944
    Number: 3913251
    Birth Place: Burnley
    Residence: Burnley
    Branch at Enlistment: Infantry
    Theatre of War: Western Europe Campaign, 1944/45
    Regiment at Death: Durham Light Infantry
    Branch at Death: Infantry

    Recce Dransfield
    Name: W Dransfield
    Rank: Trooper
    Army Number: 14351913
    Regiment: Reconnaissance Corps
    POW Number: 2394
    Camp Type: Stalag
    Camp Number: IV-F
    Camp Location: Hartmannsdorf, Saxony
    Record Office: Royal Armoured Corps and Reconnaissance Corps Record Office, The Drill Hall, Barnet, Hertfordshire
    Record Office Number: 3

    There are 2 W Dransfield's

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  9. jetson

    jetson Junior Member

    Back in the sixties we entertained some young Dutch soldiers doing their national service conscription in our mess tent whilst on exercise in the Walcheren area. I gauged the wry sense of Dutch humour when I noticed one lad sitting alone some distance from his fellows. When I remarked on this individual to one of his colleagues, he grinned and said "We are a little wary of him, he is a trainee Income Tax Inspector and soon he will return to his job!"
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  10. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Apologies for not replying sooner, k. I had not previously noticed your enquiry.

    L/Cpl. W Dransfield is only mentioned in the Roll of Honour in the batttalion history ‘The Gateshead Gurkhas’ (Moses) and so I do not have any further information about him.

    His service number is from the South Wales Borderers block of numbers.

    You could ask Jim who runs this DLI website if he has any further information; link: Those who proudly served


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  11. Mr Jinks

    Mr Jinks Bit of a Cad

    Hope no one minds I have asked the question of Jim...

    Possibility ? This is also TDs PoW he listed..
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  12. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Great work, Kyle!
  13. mark abbott

    mark abbott Junior Member

    From the Dundee Evening Telegraph 29 December 1944

    " H.L.I. SNIPERS ON THE MARK - First Day's Bag Was 15 Germans

    This is the story of the highly successful first day in action of a sniping section of a battalion of the Highland Light Infantry, writes a special correspondent. It is set between Nijmegen and Arnhem in the fateful first days of October.
    It starts when Sergeant Charles Millar, of Glasgow, and his section took over at first light one day the position of the outgoing party, and Sergeant Millar and two others installed themselves in a shell-torn house, the last in a street in the much disputed village of Bemmel.
    For a time all was quiet, then 250 yards away beside a church, Sergeant Millar spotted eight Germans crawling up the side of the road towards the village. He fired, and got one. The remainder swiftly became invisible. The sergeant passed a warning message to his platoon headquaters and the anti-tank gunners nearby.
    A few minutes later, after one of our machine guns had been firing into a half demolished house, four or five Germans doubled across the road. The snipers' section bagged another. The Germans then attempted to get a Spandau into action, but Sergeant Millar and his men saw to that alright. Around them by this time was about a platoon strength of irritable and uncomfotable Germans, who weer being given every opportunity of dying for their Fuhrer.
    When it became dark, Sergeant Millar crawled out to where he thought he had two wounded Germans to secure identification information.
    He found six bodies in the area from which the original eight had deployed at first light that morning. From information given by a patrol which went out later that night the bag increased to 15."
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  14. mark abbott

    mark abbott Junior Member

    3318690 Sgt Chrales Stewart Millar 6th H.L.I. went on to be awarded a Military Medal for the action on the 4th April 1945.

    "On 4 Apr. 45 during a Batalion attack in the DORTMUND-EMS canal bridgehead South West of IBBENBUREN, the right hand forward company was held up by snipers in houses and a strong and determined enemy force established on high ground and in closely wooded country on either side of a vital main road. Sgt Millar, the Bn Sniper Sgt., was ordered to proceed with a team of four, to neutralise the enemy snipers and report on an alleged rd. block. On approaching the road, Sgt. Millar was able to ascertain that no road block existed but observed a party of the enemy withdrawing in his direction from the area of the Unit's right hand fwd Coy. These he engaged at short range and despite their determined attempts to outflank him and although outnumbered he inflicted casualties. He then crossed the main road and, although this action put him at a greater disadvantage it enabled him to continue engaging the enemy and to prevent their infiltrating into the are of the Bn. HQ. At this stage, Sgt. Millar was wounded in the shoulder by our own artillery fire, but concealed the fact from his comrades. His efforts undoubtedly assisted the Coy which had been held up, to advance and capture its objective. He then returned to Bn HQ and reported. It was not until he had completed this task and had collapsed at the Commanding Officers feet that it was discovered that he had been wounded twenty minutes previously."
  15. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

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  16. mark abbott

    mark abbott Junior Member


    A pleasure to give something back to the Forum!

  17. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    'Sherman' at Heuvel

    New monument unveiled this weekend ... a metal cut of a Sherman. Why a tank was chosen remains a riddle ... I would have given credit to the British infantrymen who fought most gallantly at this spot. Tanks could not operate in this water logged terrain as the British had already experienced in their advance to Arnhem, earlier on, and as their opponents experienced in the October counter-attack.

    To be honest, the small chapel at this spot, with its fresh flower tradition, would have sufficed ... an act of 'commemorative violence'?

    Sherman Vergert.jpg
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2019
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  18. stolpi

    stolpi Well-Known Member

    Bump - Tomorrow, Oct 1st, it will be 76 years ago that the Germans launched their October counteroffensive in the Betuwe (aka The Island). The objective was to oust the Allies from the Nijmegen bridgehead and regain the bridge at Nijmegen.
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
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  19. Richard Leach

    Richard Leach Member

    My grandfather William "Bill" Leach was in the 5th East Yorkshires in the assault on Bemmel and wrote down a few notes before he died in 99.

    Unsure which company. I think D.
    Screenshot_20210126_094724.jpg Screenshot_20210126_094853.jpg Screenshot_20210126_094828.jpg Screenshot_20210126_094915.jpg
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  20. GJW75

    GJW75 New Member

    wondered if you could help as my Uncle died on 1st October and was 7th Bat Green Howards too. Trying to piece a few things together. His name: Harry Thomas Leyshon Smith. Number: 14327993

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