War Diary: 6th Motor Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, Jan - Dec 1943

Discussion in 'The Brigade of Guards' started by dbf, Jun 26, 2011.

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    001 Link ABBOTT P 2621156 6TH BN 17/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    002 Link ADAIR DAS 156038 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    003 Link ALINGTON PCW 176725 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    004 Link ALLAM AE 2621187 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    005 Link ALLSEYBROOK F 2622522 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    006 Link ALLSOPP JR 63352 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    007 Link APPLETON D 2615075 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    008 Link ARMITAGE A 2616256 6TH BN 09/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    009 Link ASBURY L 2622047 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    010 Link ASH H 2618650 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    011 Link BAGSHAW J 2619397 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    012 Link BAILEY AE 2614105 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    013 Link BALDWIN B 2621203 6TH BN 16/04/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    014 Link BANTON TR 2623157 6TH BN 06/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    015 Link BARKER WE 2620815 6TH BN 22/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    016 Link BATEMAN LA 2615582 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    017 Link BATES L 2620695 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    018 Link BAYLISS K 2621728 6TH BN 22/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    019 Link BEALE GW 2621540 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    020 Link BEARPARK NS 2619042 6TH BN 09/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    021 Link BEBBINGTON BG 14220893 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    022 Link BEECH ARA 2614763 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    023 Link BELL JH 2622026 6TH BN 09/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    024 Link BENNETT H 2615238 6TH BN 11/01/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    025 Link BENNETT L 2620813 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    026 Link BENSON A 2622286 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    027 Link BESWICK GF 2622838 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    028 Link BEVERLEY AC 2621721 6TH BN 12/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    029 Link BIRKIN R 2619679 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    030 Link BLACKMORE ASJ 2616128 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    031 Link BLANCHARD RE 2617736 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    032 Link BOOTE J 2620159 6TH BN 25/11/1941 GRENADIER GUARDS
    033 Link BOOTH E 14582184 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    034 Link BOTTERILL CF 2621395 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    035 Link BOULTON H 2622330 6TH BN 11/02/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    036 Link BRADLEY A 2622254 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    037 Link BRAGGER C 2620604 6TH BN 12/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    038 Link BRANDRICK A 2612605 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    039 Link BRASTED PM 2620767 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    040 Link BRAY GW 2620431 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    041 Link BRIGHTON J 2615299 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    042 Link BRIGHTON CM 2623057 6TH BN 13/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    043 Link BROCKLEBANK JRA 219024 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    044 Link BROCKLEBANK JA 2622089 6TH BN 01/05/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    045 Link BROOKE BJD 200083 6TH BN 11/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    046 Link BROOKSBANK J 2621267 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    047 Link BROWN BL 2616234 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    048 Link BROWN KAL 2620340 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    049 Link BROWN J 2620221 6TH BN 10/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    050 Link BROWN IAM 130875 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    051 Link BROWN AJ 2614614 6TH BN 12/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    052 Link BROWN FA 2623301 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    053 Link BROWNING CC 26151813 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    054 Link BUCHANAN AG 149113 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    055 Link BUCKETT TA 2620369 6TH BN 08/04/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    056 Link BURKE DP 2722906 6TH BN 07/02/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    057 Link BURNS J 2619349 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    058 Link CABLE R 2621007 6TH BN 08/04/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    059 Link CARPENTER AWT 2623137 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    060 Link CHARLTON W 2621998 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    061 Link CHECKLEY E 2617766 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    062 Link CHOLMONDELEY HPG 262096 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    063 Link CHURCHILL BF 2621576 6TH BN 09/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    064 Link CLARKE S 2732808 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    065 Link CLARKE BP 2615948 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    066 Link CLAYTON GH 2621317 6TH BN 11/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    067 Link CLEMENTS EW 2622421 6TH BN 27/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    068 Link CLOGG A 2616159 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    069 Link CLOUGH N 2621692 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    070 Link COLE HGSF 2620229 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    071 Link COOK HGR 2621141 6TH BN 13/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    072 Link COOK ET 44246 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    073 Link COOK WS 2619529 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    074 Link COOPER PJ 2618863 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    075 Link CORT F 2621482 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    076 Link COSSINS HA 2611778 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    077 Link COTTLE R 2620710 6TH BN 04/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    078 Link COTTRELL L 2618164 6TH BN 23/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    079 Link COX S 2611193 6TH BN 24/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    080 Link CRESSWELL FH 2616165 6TH BN 25/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    081 Link CREWE AM 2621791 6TH BN 22/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    082 Link CULLEN BR 2622833 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    083 Link CUPPER AE 2615159 6TH BN 03/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    084 Link CURRY P 2622457 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    085 Link CURRYER EA 2621545 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    086 Link DAVEY RH 2619613 6TH BN 15/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    087 Link DAVIES LA 2619701 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    088 Link DAVIES A 799178 6TH BN 13/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    089 Link DAVIES L 2619700 6TH BN 16/03/1943 - - 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    090 Link DAVIES GR 2612102 6TH BN 05/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    091 Link DAVIS ER 2614439 6TH BN 11/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    092 Link DAVIS AE 2620241 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    093 Link DAVIS JF 2614722 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    094 Link DENNEY TF 2616397 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    095 Link DES VOEUX WRDB 52952 CDG 156TH BN 20/09/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    096 Link DEWEY EI 2618162 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    097 Link DOUGHTY FW 2618213 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    098 Link DOUGLASS JT 2622024 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    099 Link DRAKE RM 219025 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    100 Link DUNNETT F 2616382 6TH BN 16/05/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    101 Link DURHAM NJRJT 147327 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    102 Link EDWARDS JE 2616253 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    103 Link ELLIOTT AE 2623149 6TH BN 24/08/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    104 Link ELLISON J 2619656 6TH BN 18/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    105 Link ENTWISTLE MF 5381648 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    106 Link EVASON JH 2613366 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    107 Link EVELYN PG 47090 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    108 Link FAIRBROTHER J 2622282 6TH BN 16/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    109 Link FAIRCLOUGH J 2623277 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    110 Link FAIRCLOUGH H 2621664 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    111 Link FLEMING G 2621319 6TH BN 09/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    112 Link FRANCE J 2615001 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    113 Link FRASER AS 233182 6TH BN 09/02/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    114 Link FRENCH AF 6102628 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    115 Link GALE C 2622046 6TH BN 13/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    116 Link GAMMELL KO 2622616 6TH BN 24/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    117 Link GOOCH DH 2617112 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    118 Link GOOCH AFE 2616928 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    119 Link GOSS RJV 76754 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    120 Link GRAHAM HH 2619881 6TH BN 08/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    121 Link GRANBY JW 2621489 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    122 Link GRAZEBROOK CN 186890 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    123 Link GREAVES F 4535420 6TH BN 10/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    124 Link GREEN MW 2611534 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    125 Link GREEN W 2619379 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    126 Link GREWCOCK GR 2623039 6TH BN 26/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    127 Link GROGAN TV 2614515 6TH BN 28/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    128 Link GWYER GCF 67092 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    129 Link HADDON L 2615486 6TH BN 27/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    130 Link HADEN WC 124541 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    131 Link HALLAM R 2622065 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    132 Link HAMBLETON TA 2620851 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    133 Link HAMBLETON H 2617057 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    134 Link HAMMOND SA 2611158 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    135 Link HAMMOND WH 2617370 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    136 Link HARLEY R 2620752 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    137 Link HARLOW VB 2620986 6TH BN 17/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    138 Link HARMAN FL 2623088 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    139 Link HARMSWORTH RE 2622607 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    140 Link HARRIMAN TE 2615680 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    141 Link HARRIS FC 2619742 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    142 Link HARTLEY KR 2619540 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    143 Link HAYLOR PR 2621419 6TH BN 21/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    144 Link HAYNES W 5176858 6TH BN 06/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    145 Link HEARN CE 2619287 6TH BN 22/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    146 Link HENSHAW B 253897 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    147 Link HERMON JV 131782 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    148 Link HERRING LC 2619572 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    149 Link HESKETH H 2615027 6TH BN 05/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    150 Link HICKS EJ 2618058 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    151 Link HILLMAN FK 2615767 6TH BN 06/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    152 Link HOBBS AP 2621551 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    153 Link HODGSON DJ 2617379 6TH BN 22/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    154 Link HOMES HW 2621503 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    155 Link HORROCKS T 2617323 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    156 Link HOWLAND RG 2618814 6TH BN 25/04/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    157 Link HUMPHRIES GS 2619365 6TH BN 31/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    158 Link HUNT JS 2617750 6TH BN 04/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    159 Link HUNTINGTON TW 240004 6TH BN 07/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    160 Link INCHBALD AA 262102 6TH BN 06/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    161 Link INGRAM FT 2621433 6TH BN 24/02/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS

    162 Link JEFFRIES AJ 2619726 6TH BN 25/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    163 Link JENNINGS J 2615668 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    164 Link JOHNSON ET 2619013 ATTD HQ SQN, 6TH GUARDS TANK BDE 26/09/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    165 Link JOHNSON P 2620158 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    166 Link JOHNSON N 2621405 6TH BN 07/11/1943 - - 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    167 Link JOHNSON I 2622830 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    168 Link JONAS AJ 2621422 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    169 Link JONES WC 2620217 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    170 Link JONES LJ 2620460 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    171 Link JUDGE E 2621627 6TH BN 22/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    172 Link JUKES F 2618602 6TH BN 04/05/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    173 Link KAY W 2617441 6TH BN 31/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    174 Link KEEN GAJ 2612195 6TH BN 16/05/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    175 Link KNAPP TF 2621389 6TH BN 17/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    176 Link KNATCHBULL NCM 207642 6TH BN 15/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    177 Link KNIGHT J 2617962 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    178 Link LAIRD JK 2612204 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    179 Link LAMBERT A 2612889 6TH BN 23/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    180 Link LANCE GE 2622018 6TH 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    181 Link LAWTY W 2623059 6TH BN 23/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    182 Link LAYCOCK W 2612635 6TH BN 21/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    183 Link LEE E 2619039 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    184 Link LEES GE 2613094 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    185 Link LENTON AE 2623073 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    186 Link LEVER HE 2621671 6TH BN 11/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    187 Link LIDDIARD LE 2621889 1 COY, 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    188 Link LINDOFF BT 2622966 6TH BN 15/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    189 Link LINDSAY H 2617050 6TH BN 06/12/1942 GRENADIER GUARDS
    190 Link LLOYD J 2619053 6TH BN 12/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    191 Link LUCOCK JW 2620715 6TH BN 14/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    192 Link MAHER M 2618238 6TH BN 07/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    193 Link MARGETSON NST 200086 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    194 Link MASLEN RA 2616914 6TH BN 04/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    195 Link MASON WT 2623436 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    196 Link MAY SC 2618761 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    197 Link MERRY J 2620094 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    198 Link MEYRICK PJO 253888 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    199 Link MITCHELL ES 2622002 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    200 Link MOAKES A 2619961 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    201 Link MOORE J 2622755 6TH BN 21/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    202 Link MOORE HS 2623236 6TH BN 15/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    203 Link MORGAN RV 4272340 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    204 Link MOULTRIE WC 2615993 6TH BN 01/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    205 Link MUSKETT H 2619278 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    206 Link NADIN W 2616006 6TH BN 21/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    207 Link NICHOLLS R 2618204 6TH BN 28/03/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    208 Link NICHOLLS ACJ 2622329 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    209 Link NIXON J 2620709 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    210 Link NORMINTON JE 2621368 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    211 Link O'BRIEN A 2619242 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    212 Link O'NEILL BP 2613279 6TH BN 11/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    213 Link ORBELL W 2619598 6TH BN 11/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    214 Link PAGE AJ 2618275 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    215 Link PARKER AA 2619211 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    216 Link PARR RP 253894 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    217 Link PATTON K 2623092 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    218 Link PEASE S 2617421 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    219 Link PEERS N 2621707 6TH BN 24/02/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    220 Link PERRY JG 2622308 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    221 Link PHILLIPS G 2621360 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    222 Link PHILPOT E 2621798 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    223 Link PLANT GR 5047729 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    224 Link POLLARD HC 2620294 6TH BN 13/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    225 Link PRESCOTT W 2622120 6TH BN 22/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    226 Link PRESTON H 2622124 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    227 Link PRIEST JR 2623233 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    228 Link PRIOR HG 2620213 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    229 Link RAINEY PNG 2621815 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    230 Link RAMSDEN C 2621031 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    231 Link REYNOLDS R 2619216 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    232 Link RHODES G 2620991 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    233 Link RICHARDS AG 4077354 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    234 Link RICHARDSON J 2619400 6TH BN 27/07/1942 GRENADIER GUARDS
    235 Link RIDPATH MD 186895 6TH BN 09/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    236 Link RIDPATH TG 149120 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    237 Link ROBINSON GR 2619629 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    238 Link ROBINSON WGA 2623056 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    239 Link RODEN A 2615169 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    240 Link ROSE WL 2620677 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    241 Link RUDKIN C 2616053 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    242 Link RUMLEY RA 2621148 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    243 Link RUSSELL GR 865667 6TH BN 23/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    244 Link RYAN D 2617174 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    245 Link RYNENBERG I 2623407 6TH BN 21/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    246 Link SAINSBURY OM 253898 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    247 Link SARSON GA 2618139 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    248 Link SCHOLES J 2618132 6TH BN 10/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    249 Link SCRIVENER GH 2621033 6TH BN 18/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    250 Link SCRUTTON GA 2620107 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    251 Link SHAW H 2615232 6TH BN 16/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    252 Link SLADE RH 2623550 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    253 Link SLOAN JKW 165003 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    254 Link SMITH F 2620405 6TH BN 06/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    255 Link SMITH TA 2617159 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    256 Link SMITH RR 2618443 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    257 Link SNAPE EL 2618468 6TH BN 05/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    258 Link SOUTH SJ 2611045 6TH BN 08/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    259 Link SPENCE J 2617459 6TH BN 25/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    260 Link SPENCER JA 2621364 6TH BN 16/05/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    261 Link SPENCER L 2622359 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    262 Link SPENCER WH 4858330 6TH BN 09/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    263 Link SPRATT TG 2615249 4 COY, 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    264 Link SQUARE HS 2621568 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    265 Link STEVENS JO 2620987 6TH BN 06/12/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    266 Link STOKES-ROBERTS GR 233183 6TH BN 22/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    267 Link STONEHOUSE R 2623351 6TH BN 29/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    268 Link STRANG STEEL JM 176736 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    269 Link STRETTON EE 2619392 6TH BN 21/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    270 Link STURDY VC 2616280 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    271 Link STURMAN AG 2622051 6TH BN 11/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    272 Link SUTTON AG 2622295 6TH BN 10/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    273 Link SWINNERTON S 2618872 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    274 Link TAPPING AW 2621388 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    275 Link TAYLOR HK 2614300 6TH BN 22/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    276 Link TAYLOR J 2617361 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    277 Link THICKPENNY JW 2620562 6TH BN 12/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    278 Link THOMPSON G 2618392 AND NO 6 10/06/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    279 Link THROWER LG 2621605 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    280 Link TRENCHARD H 186879 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    281 Link TRIMMER-THOMPSON CEA 200081 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    282 Link TUFNELL HJ 165020 6TH BN 11/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    283 Link TWITTY T 69671 6TH BN 24/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS

    284 Link VINE JH 2617530 ATTD HQ 6TH GUARDS TANK BDE 24/10/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    285 Link VIVIAN AG 149125 6TH BN 15/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    286 Link WALMESLEY F 2620351 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    287 Link WARDEN H 2613830 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    288 Link WATKINS W 2617339 6TH BN 30/01/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    289 Link WEBSTER GH 2615694 6TH BN 24/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    290 Link WEEKS JA 2614971 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    291 Link WESTHEAD GA 2622261 6TH BN 12/04/1944 GRENADIER GUARDS
    292 Link WHITE GR 2621507 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    293 Link WHITE EJ 5382558 6TH BN 09/05/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    294 Link WIGRAM FC 138610 6TH BN 12/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    295 Link WILLIS F 2618845 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    296 Link WILSON AJ 2621465 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    297 Link WOOD CM 2619266 6TH BN 08/10/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    298 Link WOOD G 2612532 6TH BN 17/03/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS
    299 Link WRIGHT CJ 2620721 6TH BN 07/11/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS

    300 Link YATES H 2619973 6TH BN 22/09/1943 GRENADIER GUARDS


    :poppy:
    Honi soit qui mal y pense
     
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    6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, Officers, Warrant Officers, and Staff Sergeants on 19 October 1942

    BATTALION H.Q.
    Lieutenant Colonel A.F.L. CLIVE, M.C. - Commanding Officer
    Major W.H. KINGSMILL, M.C. - Second-in-Command
    Captain the Master of FORBES - Adjutant
    Captain R.S. HEBELER - Technical Adjutant
    Lieutenant E.B.M. VAUGHAN - Intelligence Officer
    2608642 R.S.M. W. CUTTS
    2612833 Drill Sergeant F. DOWLING
    2613843 Acting Drill Sergeant G. HACKETT


    ATTACHED
    Captain A. WINDER, R.A.M.C. - Medical Officer
    Lieutenant R.F. PHILLIPS, R.A.O.C. - O.M.E.
    Captain the Reverend W.R. LEADBEATER, R.A.Ch.D. - Chaplain
    R.Q.M.S. A. MORRISON, R.A.O.C. - A.Q.M.S. (L.A.D.)
    Sergeant F. HOULDEN, R.A.O.C. - Armourer Sergeant
    2616111 Sergeant D. EGGLESTON - O.R.S.


    H.Q. COMPANY
    Captain R.W.L. LINDSAY - Company Commander
    Lieutenant B.N. PRATT - Quartermaster
    Lieutenant P.C.W. ALINGTON - Signals Officer
    Lieutenant J.H. NEVINSON - Transport Officer
    2609443 R.Q.M.S. C. HUTCHINSON
    2614086 C.S.M. A. EVERITT
    2615053 C.Q.M.S. C. KNAGGS


    No. 1 (MOTOR) COMPANY
    Major P.G. EVELYN - Company Commander
    Captain the Honourable W.N. VILLIERS - Second-in-Command
    2/Lieutenant J.H. WIGGIN - No. 1 (Scout) Platoon
    Lieutenant H.J. TUFNELL - No. 2 (M.G.) Platoon
    Lieutenant A.G. VIVIAN - No. 3 (Motor) Platoon
    Lieutenant J.M. STRANG-STEEL - No. 4 (Motor) Platoon
    2612204 C.S.M. J. LAIRD
    2614142 C.Q.M.S. W. LEWIS


    No. 2 (ANTI-TANK) COMPANY
    Major A.J.E. GORDON - Company Commander
    Captain P.C. BRITTEN - Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant H. WALL-ROW - No. 5 (Anti-Tank) Platoon
    2/Lieutenant C.N. GRAZEBROOK - No. 6 (Anti-Tank) Platoon
    2/Lieutenant N.S.T. MARGETSON - No. 7 (Anti-Tank) Platoon
    Lieutenant A.G. BUCHANAN - No. 8 (Anti-Tank) Platoon
    2614843 C.S.M. L. BURRELL
    2611813 C.Q.M.S. P. DARBY


    No. 3 (MOTOR) COMPANY
    Captain the Viscount ANSON - Company Commander
    Captain A. THORNE - Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant R.C. ROWAN - No. 9 (Scout) Platoon
    Lieutenant J.K.W. SLOAN - No. 10 (M.G.) Platoon
    Lieutenant E.M. HOVELL - No. 11 (Motor) Platoon
    Lieutenant T.G. RIDPATH - No. 12 (Motor) Platoon
    2610100 C.S.M. J. ATKINSON
    2614820 C.Q.M.S. J. EVERS


    No. 4 (MOTOR) COMPANY
    Major T.P. BUTLER - Company Commander
    Captain G.C.F. GWYER - Second-in-Command
    2/Lieutenant C.E.A. TRIMMER-THOMPSON - No. 13 (Scout) Platoon
    2/Lieutenant the Lord BRABOURNE - No. 14 (M.G.) Platoon
    2/Lieutenant the Honourable H. TRENCHARD - No. 15 (Motor) Platoon
    2/Lieutenant B.J.D. BROOKE - No. 16 (Motor) Platoon
    2612488 C.S.M. D. PALETHORPE
    C.Q.M.S. 2612947 D. BEADLE


    FIRST LINE REINFORCEMENTS
    Lieutenant R.A. KENNARD - Attached H.Q. COMPANY
    Lieutenant F.N.P. OSBORNE - Attached No. 2 COMPANY
    Lieutenant R.J.V. GOSS - Attached No. 3 COMPANY
    Lieutenant W.C. HADEN - Attached No. 4 COMPANY
     
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    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.

    1943 January 1
    0900 hours
    No. 1 Company carried out a Field Firing Exercise.

    1943 January 2
    0905 hours
    The Commanding Officer spoke to the whole Battalion on past and future events.
    0915 hours
    The Battalion paraded for Drill under the Commanding Officer.
    1030 hours
    The Commanding Officer inspected the M.T. of H.Q. Company while the Senior Major inspected the M.T. of 3 Company.

    1943 January 3
    0930 hours
    Thirty men per Company attended Divine Service.

    1943 January 4
    No. 3 Company commanded by Captain GOSS (Captain The Viscount ANSON was in Hospital) commenced its Training Week.
    1100 hours
    A Battle drill Discussion was held for all Officers and Platoon Sergeants.
    Captain A. THORNE opened the discussion for Motor Platoons and Lieutenant J.H. WIGGINS for Carrier Platoons.

    1943 January 5
    No. 3 Company carried out an Attack Exercise with No. 4 Company retiring as enemy.

    1943 January 6
    0930 hours
    The Commanding Officer and Senior Major attended a BRIGAD Defence Discussion

    1943 January 7
    1345 hours
    Captain RUCKEENE, ROYAL NAVY, lectured to the Battalion on Submarine Warfare in the Mediterranean.
    The BRIGADE held a Motor Cycle Reliability Trial in which the Battalion was placed 4th.
    Lance-Corporal KILLICK as an individual rider was 6th in the BRIGADE.

    1943 January 8
    Captain G.C. GWYER took command of 3 Company vice Captain the Viscount ANSON (Hospital).
    Lieutenant. F.N.P. OSBORNE was promoted Acting Captain.
    Lieutenant A.G. VIVIAN took over the duties of Acting Quartermaster during the absence of the Quartermaster on a Course of Administration.

    1943 January 9
    0915 hours
    The Battalion paraded for Drill under the Acting Adjutant.
    1030 hours
    The Commanding Officer inspected the Areas of 1, 3 and H.Q. Companies.
    1045 hours
    The Senior Major inspected the M.T. of No. 4 Company.
    Major P.G. EVELYN, the Adjutant, R.S.M. and R.Q.M.S. made a recce of the Guards to be found at TRIPOLI.

    1943 January 10
    0930 hours
    30 men per Company attended a Divine Service.

    1943 January 11
    0900 hours
    The Battalion took over Guards at TRIPOLI. The detachment consisted of 4 Officers and 350 Other Ranks commanded by Major P.G. EVELYN.
    The Commanding Officer visited the Guards.
    1730 hours
    A mobile cinema visited the Camp and gave two performances.

    1943 January 12
    1730 hours
    The Commanding Officer and Adjutant returned to the Battalion.

    1943 January 13
    0900 hours
    Brigadier J.A. GASCOIGNE commanding 201st GUARDS MOT BRIGADE held a discussion in the Movement of the BRIGADE in mountainous country.
    The CORPS Commander, Lieutenant General M.C. DEMPSEY, M.C. (13 CORPS) attended the discussion.
    The Battalion syndicate consisted of the Commanding Officer, Senior Major, Adjutant, Transport Officer and Acting Quartermaster.

    1943 January 14
    0900 hours
    A T.E.W.T. on Mountain Warfare was held for all Officer.

    1943 January 15
    -

    1943 January 16
    1030 hours
    The Commanding Officer inspected the Areas of No.s 3 and 4 Companies.
    Lieutenant R.A. KENNARD obtained a D1 on Regimental Instruction Course No. 38.

    1943 January 17
    0930 hours
    Divine Service was held for all available personnel.

    1943 January 18
    0830 hours
    A 5 day Mine-Lifting Course commenced. The Course was run by the ROYAL ENGINEERS.

    1943 January 19
    The Commanding Officer and Adjutant attended a two day Administrative Discussion at 9th ARMY. (Operational Role Appendix A)

    1943 January 20
    -

    1943 January 21 Quatana, Syria, M.E.F. Continuous rain for the last three days.

    1943 January 22
    -

    1943 January 23
    0915 hours
    The Battalion paraded for Drill under the Adjutant. Subaltern Officers attended.
    1030 hours
    The Commanding Officer inspected No. 2 Company Area.
    1600 hours
    Half the personnel from the TRIPOLI (SYRIA) Guard returned.

    1943 January 24 1030 hours Quatana, Syria, M.E.F. All available personnel attended Divine Service.
    1700 hours
    The remainder of the TRIPOLI Guard returned.

    1943 January 25
    0945 hours
    The Commanding Officer held a Training Conference.
    1700 hours
    An Officers’ discussion was held dealing with M.T. Movement in Mountainous Country.

    1943 January 26
    0915 hours
    A Mountain Warfare T.E.W.T. was held for all Officers who had not attended a Mountain Warfare T.E.W.T.

    1943 January 27
    A warning Order was received from BRIGADE H.Q. stating that the BRIGADE would be required to move to the 8th ARMY in the desert.
    The Commanding Officer commanded the BRIGADE from January 23rd - 30th during the absence of Brigadier J.A. GASCOIGNE.

    1943 January 28
    No. 1 Company carried out an Attack Exercise. No. 3 Company were the enemy.

    1943 January 29
    1100 hours
    Major General BANKS? DSO commanding 10th ARMOURED DIVISION inspected the Battalion. Owing to the snow the programme attached at Appendix B could not be carried out, instead the G.O.C. inspected the Battalion in its huts. The G.O.C. afterwards had lunch in the Officers’ Mess.

    1943 January 30
    There was about 2 inches of snow on the ground and all the roads over the mountains were closed.
    Companies inspected all G1098 Equipment.
    2030 hours
    The Sergeants’ Mess held a Social Evening to which the Officers were invited

    1943 January 31
    0930 hours
    A voluntary Divine Service was held in the Canteen.
    1100 hours
    The Commanding Officer and Adjutant attended a Conference at BRIGADE H.Q. on the forthcoming move. The move was known as Exercise CRAZY.
     
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    1943 February 1
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    0900 hours
    A BRIGADE Signal Exercise was held.
    Owing to the snow on the roads the Exercise was held in camp.
    0930 hours
    No. 1 Company carried out a T.E.W.T.

    1943 February 2
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    0530 hours
    The Battalion Advance Party under command of Major W.H. KINGSMILL, MC, left.
    1700 hours
    The Commanding Officer held a Conference on the Move for Company Commanders and Departmental Officers. (Appendix A)

    1943 February 3
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    An Officers’ T.E.W.T. had to be cancelled owing to the snow on the roads.

    1943 February 4
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    1700 hours
    Squadron Leader STEWARD DFC lectured to Officers, W.O.s and Sergeants on Tac T.

    1943 February 5
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    1045 hours
    Major General E.M.C. DEMPSEY MC commanding 13 CORPS visited Battalion H.Q.
    Personnel of the Battalion watched a short by the 104 Field Regiment (ESSEX YEOMANRY).
    The Battalion was blood grouped.

    1943 February 6
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    The Battalion prepared for the move.

    1943 February 7
    Quatana, Syria, M.E.F.
    0530 hours
    The Battalion moved by road from QUATANA to TULKARM WEST (PALESTINE) (Appendix B)

    1943 February 8
    Tulkarm, Palestine
    0730 hours
    The Battalion moved from TULKARM WEST to ASLUJ. (Appendix C)

    1943 February 9
    Asluj
    The Battalion moved from ASLUG to ISMAILIA. (Appendix D)

    1943 February 10
    0730 hours
    Ismailia
    The Battalion moved from ISMAILIA to QUASSASIN

    1943 February 11
    Quassasin
    The Battalion received new transport and equipment which brought it almost up to full War Strength in every detail.

    1943 February 12
    Quassasin
    Captain J.R. ALLSOPP, Lieutenant M. BONHAM CARTER and 25 Other Ranks joined the Battalion from First Line Reinforcements.

    1943 February 13
    Quassasin
    0530 hours
    The BRIGADE move to TRIPOLI (N. AFRICA) began. (Appendix E).
    The Battalion under command of Major A.J.E. GORDON moved to WADI NATRUN via CAIRO.
    The Commanding Officer went to CAIRO to await an aeroplane to TRIPOLI.

    1943 February 14
    Tripoli
    1730 hours
    The Battalion moved to DERNA. (Appendix F)

    1943 February 15
    Derna
    0530 hours
    The Battalion moved to MERSA MATRUH. (Appendix G)

    1943 February 16
    Mersa Matruh
    0530 hours
    The Battalion moved to BUQ BUQ. (Appendix H)

    1943 February 17
    Buq Buq
    0530 hours
    The Battalion moved to TOBRUK. (Appendix I)
    Major A. GORDON and Company Commanders went ahead with Major D. FORBES, MC, COLDSTREAM GUARDS commanding the BRIGADE on a tour of the battlefields round TOBRUCK.
    The Adjutant commanded the Battalion Column.

    1943 February 18
    Tobruk
    Maintenance TOBRUK area.

    1943 February 19
    Maintenance TOBRUK area.
    No. 2 Company fired their Anti-Tank guns at derelict tanks.
    Personnel of the Battalion bathed in the sea.

    1943 February 20
    Tobruk
    The Battalion moved to area 15 miles East of DERNA. (Appendix J)

    1943 February 21
    East of Derna
    The Battalion moved to area 30 miles East of BACHE (Appendix K)

    1943 February 22 530 hours East of Bache The Battalion moved to BENGHASI. (Appendix L) The Battalion was to have had 24 hours maintenance, but owing to tank transporter of 1st ARMOURED DIVISION being moved up, the Battalion was ordered to continued its march next day.

    1943 February 23
    Benghazi
    0600 hours
    The Battalion moved to area 20 miles West of AGEDABIA (Appendix M)

    1943 February 24
    West of Agedabia
    0600 hours
    The Battalion moved to area 15 miles West of MARBLE ARCH (Appendix N)
    1500 hours
    Personnel of the Battalion bathed in the Mediterranean.

    1943 February 25
    West of Marble Arch
    0600 hours
    The Battalion moved to area 30 miles West of SIRTE (Appendix O)
    The Battalion was to have stayed for the night 5 miles East of SIRTE, but BRIGADE Liaison Officer Lieutenant P.C.W. ALINGTON brought a message from 8th ARMY to 201st GUARDS BRIGAE saying that the BRIGADE would move with MAXIMUM speed to MEDENINE (TUNISIA). Speed was at once increased to 20 miles per hour and halts were cut down.

    1943 February 26
    Misurata
    0430 hours
    The Battalion moved to MISURATA (Appendix P)

    1943 February 27
    Tripoli
    0530 hours
    The Battalion moved to TRIPOLI where the Commanding Officer and Advance Party rejoined the Battalion (Appendix Q)

    1943 February 28
    Tripoli
    0845 hours
    The Battalion Advance Party left for forward area.
    The Battalion was to be called a LORRIED INFANTRY BATTALION and the M.G. Platoon in each Motor Company was turned into a Motor Platoon. Three Carriers from each Scout Platoon were withdrawn and personnel transferred to Motor Platoons to increase rifle strength.
     
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    Courtesy of Rotherfield
    Rotherfield

    Photograph taken 1949 of GRENADIER CEMETERY AT MARETH
    Hills from the Horseshoe feature in the background.

    IMG_1370.jpg

    IMG_1371.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
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    6th (Motor) Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS WAR DIARY, MARCH 1943
    Commanding Officer Lt.-Col. A.F.L. CLIVE, M.C.

    8TH ARMY, TUNISIA

    1 March 1943
    0300 hours
    The Battalion moved to area West of BEN GARDEN.

    2 March 1943
    0700 hours
    The Battalion moved to an area West of MEDENINE where it took up a defensive position to form an Anti-Tank locality.

    3 March 1943
    Digging the Battalion position continued.
    Vehicles approx. 60 with the Battalion were dug in and camouflage.

    4 March 1943
    1030 hours
    Lieutenant General Sir Oliver LEES (Commanding 30 CORPS) visited Battalion HQ.
    1200 hours
    Three bombs were dropped in the Battalion area.
    Guardsman HUNT, J. No. 2 Company was badly wounded and later Died of Wounds.
    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    5 March 1943
    1300 hours
    Lieutenant General Sir Oliver LEESE visited Battalion HQ and warned the Commanding Officer that the ARMY COMMAND expected the enemy to attack the following morning.
    1500 hours
    Major General MD ERSKINE and 7th ARMOURED DIVISION spoke to Commanding Officers, Second-in-Commands, Adjutants and Company Commanders at BRIGADE HQ.
    Lieutenant H.J. TUFNELL rejoined from Sick Leave.
    His method of transport was lorry hopping (22) and aeroplane hopping (1) from EGYPT !

    6 March 1943
    The enemy attacked with 3 Armoured Divisions.
    0545 hours
    Heavy shelling slightly North.
    Two shells burst near No. 3 Company O.P.
    0830 hours
    Attack began.
    Heavy shelling from both sides.
    0900 hours
    Tanks reported forming up on COLDSTREAM and SCOTS GUARDS front.
    Battalion HQ moved to its Battle HQ and defensive positions were manned.
    1030 hours
    Heavy shelling around BRIGADE HQ with a few shells falling in the Battalion area.
    COLDSTREAM and SCOTS GUARDS drove off tank attack in their fronts.
    Spasmodic shelling all day.
    1600 hours
    Stuka raid.
    Information received that enemy was forming up for an attack at 1630 hours.
    Owing to a heavy Artillery barrage this attack never developed against own F.D.L.s.
    Rain during the night so little activity except shelling.

    Battalion was supported by 4 N.Z. Artillery Regiment and 7 Medium Artillery.
    Casualties 8 wounded of which 4 were evacuated.

    7 March 1943
    0545 hours
    Very heavy mist for about 2 hours in which time the enemy withdrew the major portion of his force.
    The Battalion improved its positions, and the Chaplain, Captain the Reverend W.R. LEADBEATER held services by Companies.


    http://www.ww2talk.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=54931&stc=1&d=1309263930
    IWM Ref NA 1168: General Montgomery with Lt-Col A Clive of the Grenadier Guards in a turretless Stuart command tank, 8 March 1943.

    8 March 1943
    1130 hours
    General Sir B.L. MONTGOMERY (G.O.C. 8TH ARMY) visited the Battalion.
    He was introduced to the Officers and then spoke to some of the men.
    1200 hours
    The Battalion stood down.

    9 March 1943
    0900 hours
    Personnel of the Battalion attended a ‘Tank Blowing-up’ Demonstration .
    1030 hours
    The Commanding Officer attended the Army Commanders Conference.

    10 March 1943
    1000 hours
    Lieutenant H.J. TUFNELL and servant went on a Recce Patrol in a Jeep.
    They did not contact the enemy but got nearer to his positions than anyone else.
    1330 hours
    A Night Attack T.E.W.T. was held for all Officers.

    11 March 1943
    Lieutenant H.J. TUFNELL and Lieutenant B.J.D. BROOKE while out on a Recce Patrol in a Jeep were blown up and killed by a mine. Their bodies were recovered by Lieutenant Lord BRABOURNE and volunteers.
    CWGC :: Casualty Details
    CWGC :: Casualty Details
    1800 hours
    The Battalion less 4 Company carried out a Night Attack Exercise.

    12 March 1943
    0730 hours
    The Commanding Officer held a conference on the move to be carried out by the Battalion on 13 March.
    0830 hours
    The Commanding Officer and Company Commanders made a Recce of the new area to be taken over by the Battalion.
    1000 hours
    4 Company carried out Night Attack Exercise.

    13 March 1943
    1900 hours
    The Battalion moved forward and took over a position from ARGYLL & SUTHERLAND HIGHLANDERS.

    14 March 1943
    0545 hours
    A standing Patrol under Lieutenant SLOAN consisting of 15 Other Ranks was attacked and only Lieutenant SLOAN and 3 Other Ranks got away.

    15 March 1943
    1900 hours
    Recce patrols were led by Lieutenant STRANG STEEL, Lieutenant VAUGHAN, Lieutenant SLOAN and Captain GOSS.

    16 March 1943
    The Battalion prepared for the Night Attack.
    See:
    (1) Account of the attack on the Horseshoe Feature at ST. GUELLA on night 16/17 March 1943 written by Lieutenant Colonel A.F.L. CLIVE, M.C.
    (2) Report on action 16/17 March 1943 written by Major O’BRIEN BUTLER, M.C., R.H.A.

    See following posts, March WD will continue after Reports.
    NA_001168.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
  9. Takrouna1943

    Takrouna1943 Member

    Diane, brilliant stuff, a real service to us all. I shall be visiting the Horseshoe battlefield later this year so your research will be very valuable. I shall post photos.
     
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    From WO 201/590


    6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, PERSONNEL WHO TOOK PART IN THE BATTLE 16/17th March 1943

    BATTALION H.Q.
    Commanding Officer - Lieutenant-Colonel A.F.L. CLIVE, M.C. - WOUNDED
    Second-in-Command - Major W.H. KINGSMILL M.C.
    Adjutant - Captain The Master of FORBES
    Intelligence Officer - Lieutenant E.B.H. VAUGHAN - WOUNDED
    R.S.M. - 2612833 R.S.M. F. DOWLING

    Attached
    Medical Officer - Captain A. WINDER, R.A.M.C.
    Chaplain - Captain Reverend W.R. LEADBEATER, R.A.Ch.D.


    H.Q. COMPANY
    Company Commander - Captain Viscount ANSON
    Signal Officer - Lieutenant R.A. KENNARD
    C.S.M. - 2615035 C.S.M. C. KNAGGS


    No. 1 (Motor) COMPANY
    Company Commander - Major P.G. EVELYN - MISSING [KILLED]
    No. 1 (Sc) Platoon - Lieutenant J.H. WIGGIN - MISSING
    No. 2 (Mot) Platoon - Lieutenant M.R. BONHAM CARTER - MISSING
    No. 3 (Mot) Platoon - Lieutenant N.J. DURHAM - MISSING [KILLED]
    No. 4 (Mot) Platoon - Lieutenant J.M. STRANG STEEL - KILLED
    C.S.M. - 2612204 C.S.M. J. LAIRD - KILLED


    No. 2 (Anti-Tank) COMPANY
    Company Commander - Major A.J.E. GORDON - WOUNDED
    Liaison Officer - Captain F.N.P. OSBORNE
    No. 5 (Anti-Tank) Platoon - Lieutenant W.C. HADEN - KILLED
    No. 6 (Anti-Tank) Platoon - Lieutenant C.N. GRAZEBROOK - KILLED
    No. 7 (Anti-Tank) Platoon - A.G. BUCHANAN - KILLED
    C.S.M. - 2615671 C.S.M. L. BURRELL


    No. 3 (Motor) COMPANY
    Company Commander - Captain G.C.F. GWYER - KILLED
    Second-in-Command - Captain R.J.V. GOSS - KILLED
    No. 9 (Sc) Platoon - Lieutenant R.C. ROWAN - WOUNDED
    No. 10 (Motor) Platoon - Lieutenant J.K.W. SLOAN - KILLED
    No. 11 (Motor) Platoon - Lieutenant E.M. HOVELL - WOUNDED
    No. 12 (Motor) Platoon - Lieutenant T.G. RIDPATH - KILLED
    C.S.M. - 2614820 C.S.M. J. EVERS - MISSING


    No. 4 (Motor) COMPANY
    Company Commander - Major T.P. BUTLER - MISSING
    Second-In-Command - Captain J.R. ALLSOPP - KILLED
    No. 13 (Sc) Platoon - Lieutenant C.E.A. TRIMMER THOMPSON - KILLED
    No. 14 (Motor) Platoon - Lieutenant Lord BRABOURNE - MISSING
    No. 15 (Motor) Platoon - Lieutenant H. TRENCHARD - KILLED
    No. 16 (Motor) Platoon - Lieutenant A.G. VIVIAN - MISSING
    C.S.M. - 2612488 C.S.M. D. PALETHORPE - MISSING


    PERSONNEL LEFT AT “A” ECHELON
    Commanding “A” Echelon - Captain A. THORNE
    Transport Officer - Lieutenant J.H. NEVINSON
    D/Sergeant - 2613843 Drill Sergeant G. HACKETT
    A/Drill Sergeant - 2610100 Acting Drill Sergeant J. ATKINSON


    PERSONNEL LEFT AT “B” ECHELON
    H.Q. COMPANY
    Quartermaster - Lieutenant B.H. PRATT
    R.QM.S. - 2609443 R.Q.M.S. C. HUTCHINSON
    C.Q.M.S. - 2611975 C.Q.M.S. E. EVERETT
    O.R.S. - 2616967 Sergeant P. DOHERTY
    A.Q.M.S. (L.A.D.) - 871573 A.Q.M.S. J. WORKMAN, R.E.M.E.
    Armourer Sergeant - 7611617 Sergeant F. HOULDEN, R.E.M.E.
    C.Q.M.S. 1 COMPANY - 2611981 C.Q.M.S. F. WILLIAMS
    C.Q.M.S. 2 COMPANY - 2615671 C.Q.M.S. W. NASH
    C.Q.M.S. 3 COMPANY - 2615599 C.Q.M.S. J. MANSBRIDGE
    C.Q.M.S. 4 COMPANY - 2612947 C.Q.M.S. D. BEADLE


    PERSONNEL LEFT OUT OF BATTLE

    No. 1 (Motor) COMPANY
    Second-in-Command - Captain The Honourable W.N. VILLIERS

    No. 2 (Anti-Tank) COMPANY
    Second-in-Command - Captain P.C. BRITTEN
     
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    P1550425.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
  12. dbf

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    6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS
    ACCOUNT OF BATTLE
    NIGHT 16/17 MARCH 1943
    SOUTHERN TUNISIA

    Commanding Officer: Lieutenant-Colonel A.F.L. CLIVE, M.C.
    MEDENINE - TUNISIA 1:200,000 Sheet 28.


    LAYOUT OF THE BATTLE
    During the night 16/17 March 1943, 201 Guards (Motor) Brigade was to seize and hold high ground B.139, e.582956 - Point 109 E.575956 - SIDI EL GUELAA E.566947 - Point 135 5693 - ZEHMOULA R.5793. To be known as HORSESHOE.

    OBJECTIVES
    6 GRENADIER GUARDS right. - B139 and Point 109 and neck between Point 109 & Point 153.
    3 COLDSTREAM GUARDS left. - Point 153 and then exploit Southwards to Point 135.
    2 SCOTS GUARDS. - In Reserve. To occupy defensive position BIR BSIR.6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS


    6 GRENADIER GUARDS ORDERS
    INFORMATION
    The area HORSESHOE was not supposed to be strongly held and it was not thought that there were many mines in the area, although during the last few days recce patrols had reported that the enemy was strengthening his positions. Air photographs showed certain dug positions and some wire, also road blocks (stone walls 5ft x 3ft) which did not come out in the interpretation of the photographs.

    TROOPS UNDER COMMAND
    One Troop 257 Anti-Tank Battery, ROYAL ARTILLERY
    One Troop 21 Field Squadron, ROYAL ENGINEERS

    TROOPS IN SUPPORT OF 201 GUARDS BRIGADE
    7 ARMOURED DIVISION Artillery three Army Field Regiments and four Medium Regiments.
    One Machine Gun Company, 1/7 MIDDLESEX REGIMENT.
    Major T.P. O’BRIEN BUTLER, M.C., R.H.A. was the Battery Commander who accompanied the Battalion. There were F.O.O.s with the forward Companies.

    COMPANY OBJECTIVES
    3 COMPANY (Captain G.C.F. GWYER) - right B139
    1 COMPANY (Major P.G. EVELYN) - Point 109
    4 COMPANY (Major T.P. BUTLER) - left. Neck between Point 109 and Point 153.
    (1, 3 and 4 Companies were Motor Companies consisting of Company HQ, Scout Platoon (11 Carriers) and three Motor Platoons (one included 4 M.M.Gs for defence weapons) )
    2 (Anti-Tank) Company (Major A.J.E. GORDON) with Consolidation Group.


    METHOD
    (a) ASSAULT GROUP.
    Companies’ HQs and Motor Platoons of 1, 3 and 4 Companies

    (b) ADVANCED BATTALION HQ
    Commanding Officer, Lieutenant-Colonel A.F.L. CLIVE, M.C.
    Intelligence Officer, Lieutenant E.R.M. VAUGHAN
    Liaison Officer from BRIGADE, Lieutenant P.C.W. ALINGTON
    Intelligence Section and Battalion Police
    One Troop 21 Field Squadron ROYAL ENGINEERS attached working on the Battalion Axis.

    (c) MAIN BATTALION HQ
    Second-in-Command, Major W.H. KINGSMILL, M.C. Rear Link to BRIGADE
    Adjutant, Captain the Master of FORBES. Control to Companies.
    Lieutenant R.A. KENNARD, Signal Officer
    R.S.M. F. DOWLING, Signallers and Signaller with cable-laying jeep from BRIGADE.

    (d) CONSOLIDATION GROUP
    2 (Anti-Tank) Company, Scout Platoons, M.M.G. and Mortar vehicles of 1, 3 AND 4 Companies. “F” Echelon transport.
    One Troop 257 Anti-Tank Battery, ROYAL ARTILLERY.

    (e) R.A.P.
    Captain A. WINDER, R.A.M.C., Captain the Reverend W.R. LEADBEATER, C.F., and R.A.P. staff.


    INTERCOMMUNICATION.
    (a) Forward from Advance and Main Battalion HQ by W/T or runner. Each of 1, 3 and 4 Companies had a No. 18 (Manpack) set and so did the Commanding Officer at Battalion HQ Control had a No. 19 set. On the Consolidation Group going forward each Company would have had its No. 19 set in a W/T vehicle and the Commanding Officer his set in a Scout Car.

    (b) Back from Main Battalion HQ to BRIGADE by W/T or line. Rear Link (R. SIGNALS) No. 19 Set and BRIGADE line party with a cable-laying jeep.


    PROGRAMME
    (a) 1930 hours
    Advance to Start Line to begin. Speed 100 yards in 3 minutes - silent.
    Axis of advance and Start Line to be marked by BRIGADE Intelligence Officer, Captain D.H. PHILLIPS (GRENADIER GUARDS) assisted by Battalion Intelligence Officer, Lieutenant E.B.M. VAUGHAN.
    Tape was used for marking the Axis and Start Line.

    (b) 2045 - 2100 hours
    Halt on Start Line.
    Artillery to fire salvoes every four minutes 400 yards ahead.

    (c) 2100 - 2136 hours
    Advance to line beyond WADI RAMLI.
    Speed 100 yards in three minutes.
    Artillery concentrations on known enemy positions.

    (d) 2136 - 2146 hours
    Halt and straighten out having crossed WADI RAMLI.
    Artillery concentrations changing to opening line of barrage.

    (e) 2146 - 2301 hours
    Assault. Speed 100 yards in four minutes.
    Artillery barrage and concentrations.

    (f) Rear Battalion HQ and Consolidation Group to move forward to Start Line Area once advance of Assault Troops from Start Line Area began.

    (g) On success signal being fire by Companies (signal verey light red-green-red repeated) Company Consolidation Groups were to go forward to their own Companies and Companies were to consolidate and exploit forward as possible.
     
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    THE BATTLE
    At 1930 hours advance of 6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS started according to plan. The silent advance to the Start Line presented no difficulties and Advance Battalion HQ and both forward Companies arrived more or less simultaneously some half hour before the time scheduled - 2045 hours. This pause of three-quarters of an hour was useful as it allowed Companies to get into their correct positions and by 2030 hours the Battalion was lined up on the Start Line with 3 Company support by 1 Company on the right, Advance Battalion HQ centre and 4 Company on the left.

    At this time the whole front was quiet. There was a moon - no brilliant but bright enough for the outline of our objective to be seen.

    At 2045 hours our Artillery opened and the noise had a heartening effect. Salvoes of shells were put down 400 yards beyond the Assault Troops. Between 2045 hours and 2100 hours what seemed to be some of our own shells fell amongst the Left Forward Company (4 Company), but it is possible that they may have been enemy shells or even mines.

    At 2100 hours the advance began and in a short time the steep banks of the WADI RAMLI were reached. The Artillery continued to fire concentrations but in greater weight. Advanced Battalion HQ kept its position between the leading Companies, and a Sapper party laid the Axis tape as it moved forward. During this barrage Advanced Battalion HQ was out of touch with Companies because the Commanding officer had returned its set to No. 1 Company, which he had borrowed during the silent portion of the advance, his own having ceased to function earlier. A little enemy machine gun fire was encountered at this time but it was soon stopped. Advanced Battalion HQ moved between the two leading Companies.

    3 Company on the right advanced to the WADI RAMLI where it was met by slight enemy mortar fire which resulted in a few casualties. Advanced Battalion HQ on coming into the WADI RAMLI came under machine gun fire for some seconds. 4 Company on the left advanced to the WADI without any trouble. The leading Companies now began the descent into the WADI. On the West side of the WADI bed a trip wire 6 inches high was encountered. It seemed to stretch along the whole front. This wire, in case it was booby trapped, was cut, but it afterwards transpired that it marked a deadly minefield. Up to now everything had gone splendidly.

    Main Battalion HQ was not in touch with Advanced Battalion HQ but was in touch with BRIGADE by wireless and by line. The Adjutant reported to the BRIGADIER that everything was going well. The leading Companies now formed up on the enemy side of the WADI, and from a number of explosions apart from enemy shelling, it became apparent that they were on the edge of an enemy minefield. Tall columns of black smoke went up and hung in the air and there were a number of casualties. The mines were mixed, they included Tellers, “S” and Italian A/P box mines.

    The Commanding Officer now saw that the Companies were too far forward, especially 4 Company, and that they might get damaged by our own barrage. His view was supported by Major O’BRIEN BUTLER, M.C., R.H.A. who had been with him the whole time.

    The Commanding Officer visited the right-hand Companies and spoke on the air to 4 Company ordering it back from the barrage line. Whilst running down the escarpment back to Advanced Battalion HQ the Commanding Officer’s runner blew up a mine beside him. The runner, Lance-Corporal HERRING, was killed and the blast knocked the Company Commander down.

    At 2146 hours the assault began. All the assaulting troops were now under shell fire, some small arms fire, and were suffering casualties from the mines over which they were advancing. A fierce artillery barrage preceded the leading Companies and there is now doubt that, in their enthusiasm, some of the men got too close to our own barrage and suffered casualties from it. 4 Company lost Lieutenant the Honourable H. TRENCHARD and about 20 men; 3 and 1 Companies were encountering the same difficulty, though perhaps, their wider dispersion made their casualties less. Lieutenant HOVELL (3 Company) and about 8 men were wounded. Battalion HQ also suffered casualties - Lieutenant VAUGHAN (Intelligence Officer) was wounded and a number of signal and intelligence personnel also.

    The advance went on and few mines were met for another 200 yards when a double apron fence was reached. This fence was heavily mined on our side, and marked the near edge of an even thicker minefield than the first one.

    Here the smoke of the barrage began to have effect, for the left Company (4 Company) seemed to .... direction and got right over into the other two Companies. This resulted in bunching, a check and further casualties from mines and shelling.

    The difficulties of intercommunication were increased by the Commanding Officer having no set, 1 Company’s set and team having been blown up on a mine and 3 Company’s set and crew also out of action.

    Main Battalion HQ had reached the high ground on the near side of the WADI RAMLI. The R.A.P. was established in a Wadi and the Consolidation Group was then sorted out by the Second-in-Command so that it should be all ready to go forward when required.

    The Sergeant Major was to have gone down into WADI RAMLI near the Main Road to form a Traffic Control Point and Prisoners of War Collection Post; for this purpose he had a W/T vehicle. He was unable to go forward as the route into the Wadi bed has still not been cleared of mines by the Sappers.

    Before the assaulting troops now lay the enemy F.D.L.s and it was now some time after 2200 hours. 4 Company went into the assault at the double; they reached the enemy trenches, some of which they found to be ten foot deep and, not being able to bayonet the Germans in the trenches they shot them.

    3 Company were met by slight enemy machine gun fire as they passed through the wire at the far side of the minefield. They re-assembled at the far side and formed up for the final assault. This was successful and they reached their objective (B 139) where they fired their success signal.

    Major O’BRIEN BUTLER went up on to KSAR MEJENE to try to locate Major EVELYN with whom his F.O.O. was placed. He reported that on his way he found four Germans bayonetted in one trench of only about ten yards.

    Main Battalion HQ had difficulty in making out which Company had put up its success signal owing to the smoke from our shelling, and W/T communication with Companies having broken down. The Second-in-Command reported to the BRIGADE that a success signal had been fired.

    Advanced Battalion HQ had reached the road at about 580953 and the Commanding Officer saw that 4 Company had got too far to the right. He contacted Major EVELYN on the hill Point “A” to the West of the road and ordered him to take on 4 Company’s objective between Point 109 and Point 153. At the same time he sent Sergeant BRIDGES (Intelligence Sergeant) to find Major BUTLER (4 Company) who was on the left of the 139 feature, and directed him to take on 1 Company’s original objective on Point 109.

    Major EVELYN rallied his Company with his hunting horn, and followed by his pack who were in great spirits, pass Advanced Battalion HQ to assault and take the new objective.

    It was now about 2230 hours and owing to the density of the minefields and the difficulty of maintaining direction, every hill looking rather alike in the dark, both Companies had lost the barrage.

    At 2320 hours the barrage ended and silence descended except for one or two posts still active on the North ends of KSAR MEJENE, Point 109 feature and the important high ground about Point 117.

    Major O’BRIEN BUTLER took two German prisoners and sent them back to Main Battalion HQ. There were now a number of stunned Germans about on the hills owing to the barrage. However, numbers were getting rather short; 1 Company had not more than about 30 men, whilst Advanced Battalion HQ including Officers was only about 7 strong out of their original 20 or more.

    The Commanding Officer led a small mopping up party consisting of Lieutenant ALINGTON, 2 Sergeants and Intelligence Corporal to mop up in and around Ring Countour 579953 (marked “A” on sketch). There were still several Germans hiding in slit trenches and dugouts. As a result of this five Germans were taken prisoner. On the road beside Point “A” was the original spot recce’d for Advanced Battalion HQ so the Commanding Officer established himself there and remained to await further developments. A Orilux torch was lighted to guide runners from Companies and also the Consolidation Groups coming forward.

    We seemed to be in pretty strong control of the area. All that was left was for the attack on Point 109 to be successful and then for the Consolidation Group to come up. Major GORDON (Commanding 2 Anti-Tank Company) arrived at Advanced Battalion HQ and was sent back by the Commanding Officer to bring up the Consolidation Group. Major O’BRIEN BUTLER went with Major GORDON, who had been wounded in the leg.

    The Commanding Officer sent Lieutenant VAUGHAN to obtain news of the progress of the Consolidation Group and to assist in bringing it up, still no realising that the vehicles could not move for mines.

    Main Battalion HQ was not getting some light hostile shelling but came to no harm as the shells were falling just out of harm’s way to the North. The R.A.P. had some narrow escapes in their Wadi.

    Major GORDON arrived back at Main Battalion HQ. The Consolidation Group led by ROYAL ENGINEERS Captain and followed by the Commanding Officer’s W/T Scout Car, two Platoons Anti-Tank Guns and 3 Company’s Consolidation Group began to move towards the Wadi. The vehicles got down into the Wadi bed and were soon stopped by mines. The F.O.O. went forward and informed this Commanding Officer. There was a considerable amount of sniping going on at these vehicles all halted on the track leading down into the Wadi. The shellfire in the Wadi, where the vehicles were nose to tail, and on the steep scarp face increased. A Portee at 589947 was hit and set on fire; all the crew killed. This blaze lit up the surrounding countryside and it made it very difficult for vehicles to move either way on the escarpment in the Wadi or on the plain above without drawing heavy ... from Point 117 vicinity. The F.O.O.s honey tank which was the leading vehicle had been put out of action. This loss meant that all communication with supporting Artillery ceased. It must be noted however that little Artillery support fire would have been of any use as our own and enemy localities were so vague that accurate D.F. fire was impossible. A second W/T set was brought up by ROYAL ARTILLERY but was soon put out of action, as were two F.O.O.s.

    Two of the Company objectives had certainly been taken and soon 1 Company’s signal showed that the third objective had also been reached; all that was wanted was the Consolidation Group to complete the mopping up and to hold the positions gained against any counter-attack.

    The Commanding Officer still could not get his Scout Car with wireless up to Advanced Battalion HQ owing to the mines, and his only means of communication with Companies was by runner. This method was slow and uncertain owing to increased machine gun and mortar fire, and only one Company runner, Guardsman PEARCE, remained from the passage of the minefield; he was quite unperturbed. Main Battalion came in for a brisk time of shelling and mortar fire, most of which fell to the North of the vehicles and those shells which did fall among the vehicles did no damage to personnel nor did they knock out any vehicles. The reason for this shelling and mortar fire was that the vehicles were lit up by the burning Portee. The Second-in-Command decided to move Main Battalion HQ and the remainder of the Consolidation Group about 150 yards to the South to get the vehicles off the skyline. There was then intermittent sniping and tommy gun fire in the area of Main Battalion HQ and the Consolidation Group from the top of the Wadi bank, and it seemed possible that the enemy might be trying to work round to the East and then come in behind Main Battalion HQ. Captain the Viscount ANSON and the Adjutant then got hold of all available men, including ROYAL CORPS OF SIGNALS personnel from BRIGADE, and put them out to form a defensive flank facing North.

    At about 0100 hours, Captain ALLSOPP and Lieutenant ROWAN came forward to Advance Battalion HQ and informed the Commanding Officer that if a vehicle moved, it blew up, and that the Consolidation Group could not be got forward until the Sappers had swept lanes up the Main Road. The Commanding Officer came back to the Rear road block to try to clear up the trouble and established Battalion HQ there.

    About ten enemy machine gun posts had made their appearance at certain vantage points, probably on ring contour 577950, and were shooting up the Wadi crossing and Company positions. A gap in the minefield at the Wadi bed crossing was at lass cleared by the Sappers, who had done magnificent work; they were under almost continual fire and had suffered a number of casualties.

    Heavy and accurate mortar fire was now continuous on the Wadi bed; big shells were falling within 200 yards of Point 66, and casualties were mounting.

    Main Battalion HQ was informed of wounded who had been collected and put in a comparatively safe place in the Wadi. Captain Reverend W.R. LEADBEATER (C.F.) and a party of stretcher bearers immediately set off to bring the wounded back to the R.A.P. In the Wadi bed three more vehicles received direct hits.

    Heavy and accurate mortar fire was now falling on the Company positions, but there was little they could reply with. Some Anti-Tank Portees had go across the Wadi, and 1 Company carriers (Lieutenant WIGGIN) and 4 Company carriers (Lieutenant C.E.A. TRIMMER THOMPSON) were also across the Wadi, but on reaching the far side, and on turning right to go up the main road they found road blocks of stone walls barring their way. They tried to go round these blocks but only ran on to more minefields. 1 Company carriers were in touch with Main Battalion HQ and Lieutenant J.H. WIGGIN made great efforts to get his Scout Platoon up to 1 Company, as did Lieutenant ROWN (3 Company Scout Platoon) - this Officer was blown out of two mined Carriers and was finally wounded in the head by a mortar bomb. Most of the Carriers went on to mines and were blown up. Lieutenant TRIMMER THOMPSON’s Carrier struck a mine and he, with all the crew, were killed. Captain R.J.V. GOSS (3 Company) was killed while trying to lead the Carriers through the mines.

    All subalterns of 2 (Anti-Tank) Company were killed in trying to get the 6-pounder Anti-Tank guns up to their positions, or in recconnoitring positions in Company areas for the guns.

    1 Company’s exact location was not known and about this time Lieutenant C.N. GRAZEBROOK (Anti-Tank Company Recce Officer) arrived at Battalion HQ accompanied by Guardsman CLARKE, with a message from Major EVELYN saying that he was surrounded. GRAZEBROOK said that the Company had gone beyond its objective but that he could guide up the Carriers. He went off on the leading Carrier and was immediately killed by a mine. When Guardsman CLARKE continued with the remainder of the Carriers, the same thing happened, and he was wounded. Lieutenant WIGGIN was then sent off by the Commanding Officer to try to find 1 Company, but this he failed to do although he had run pat a number of German posts between where the Company was believed to be, and the road. Later on WIGGIN was sent again, on foot, but again failed to find 1 Company.

    The Commanding Officer’s W/T Scout Car reached him and he wirelessed back to Main Battalion HQ for Captain F.N.P. OSBORNE (2 Company) to come up to take over the task of organising the Anti-Tank defence with the few guns which remained, from Major ?J.E. GORDON (Commanding 2 Anti-Tank Company) who had been wounded and placed with the wounded. The time was now about 030 hours [sic] .

    One Carrier of 3 Company with Sergeant DELEBECQUE in command did good work in destroying two enemy machine gun nests with grenades.

    From now onwards the night became a nightmare of trying to sort out the Consolidation Group vehicles beyond and around the road blocks, under continuous shell and mortar fire. It also became apparent that the Companies which were isolated in their objectives could not now be reinforced since it was not possible to move up any Carriers, Mortar or Machine Gun vehicles to their areas.

    4 Company’s Machine Guns, under Sergeant SMITH were put into action by the Commanding Officer and knocked out some enemy machine gun posts and kept others quiet. The Germans then brought their hydraulic mortar into action and brought down very heavy fire on our machine gunners, who suffered several casualties; the enemy mortars were then ranged onto Main Battalion HQ and the remainder of the Consolidation Group. They brought down concentrations on either side of the vehicles, but never managed to get fire onto the exact target. Meanwhile Main Battalion HW was still in touch by wireless with the Commanding Officer and BRIGADE. The Commanding Officer reported that unless the Consolidation Group could be got up before dawn, and this did not look likely, or some other form of help could be got before dawn, that the position would be almost untenable. This information was passed back to the Brigadier. The hilltop on the East side of the Wadi was being swept by accurate machine gun fire and the passage to and from the Wadi became increasingly difficult. Between 0230 and 0400 hours the battle died down to some extent, and the situation improved as a result of the gallant efforts of the Companies who were still holding on to their objectives.

    At about 0230 hours Lieutenant RIDPATH (Commanding 3 Company vice Captain G.O. GWYER severely wounded) reported to the Commanding Officer that for the moment he was holding counter-attacks but needed reinforcements and ammunition. The Commanding Officer collected some spare men and ammunitions and went round 3 Company positions with him. Vehicles could not be got forward to remove the many wounded.

    The Commanding Officer ordered Lieutenant VAUGHAN to make up four Anti-Tank guns and crews to put into action at dawn, from the remnants of those vehicles and teams which had gone up on mines. At the same time he instructed the R.S.M. to form an Infantry Platoon, and Lieutenant WIGGIN to do the same with any Carriers he could find.

    At about 0400 hours the Commanding Officer was completely cut off from all Companies except 3 Company which could be reached with difficulty. He now sent a message to Main Battalion HQ which was to be passed back to the Brigadier, again explaining that the position would be untenable at dawn unless help arrived and that before he had lost communication with the Companies he had ordered “No withdrawal”.

    There were now 40 - 50 wounded needing evacuation, in the Wadi at Point 66. The only vehicles which could possibly get down to the Wadi were Jeeps. Captain Viscount ANSON (Commanding HQ Company) and Lieutenant R.A. KENNARD (Signal Officer) carried on a ferry service with Jeeps and brought back the wounded to the R.A.P. where the M.O. (Captain A. WINDER, R.A.M.C.) , the Chaplain (Captain Reverend A.R. LEADBEATER) and the Medical Staff were working under trying conditions with shells and mortar bombs falling all around them, but never actually hitting the R.A.P.

    At 0400 hours the Commanding Officer decided to clear the Wadi of all vehicles except the remaining Carriers and four Anti-Tank guns, the latter to form a bridgehead whilst he with two or three Carriers was once more to attempt a passage to his Companies. The Second-in-Command had been ordered to meet the Brigadier at 2nd Battalion SCOTS GUARDS. So that the Rear Link could still be manned Lance-Sergeant BANKS fixed up a long extension to the headset on the Battalion Control and the Adjutant manned the Control and Rear Link Wireless sets.

    At about 0430 hours the Commanding Officer spoke to Major BUTLER (4 Company) on the air and was told that the Company was surrounded and being attacked. Accordingly the Commanding Officer instructed Major BUTLER to withdraw if he could to the high ground at “A”.

    To cover this withdrawal an extemporised Infantry Platoon was sent up under Lieutenant HADEN (2 Company) and Sergeant DELEBECQUE, to the left of No. 3 Company’s position on the 139 feature. This platoon, under Sergeant DELEBECQUE, Lieutenant HADEN was killed shortly after arrival, fought the battle out with No. 3 Company. Intercomn on the air with No. 4 Company ceased from now on.

    The Commanding Officer spoke to the Adjutant on the wireless and told him to pass back a personal message to the Brigadier saying the he was now out of touch with his Companies, that all Companies had had heavy casualties and that the Battalion must be annihilated unless help could arrive. The Brigadier sent back a personal message to the Commanding Officer congratulating him on his magnificent fight and saying that it would be impossible to get help up before he evening of 17 March.

    It was now obvious that the position of Main Battalion HQ would be untenable at dawn as all the vehicles would be in full view of the enemy. The Second-in-Command therefore ordered that if he did not return to Battalion HQ before half an hour before dawn, Main Battalion HQ, the remainder of the Consolidation Group and the R.A.P. should move back to where the Battalion had leaguered during the night 15/16 Marh.

    At dawn (about 0445 hours) the position was that 3 Company was holding attacks but under heavy and observed Mortar and Small Arms fire; Lieutenant SLOAN remained alive of the Officers. 4 and 1 Companies were isolated and surrounded. Advance Battalion HQ at the road block with a platoon of ?1 Coy was under continuous and observed fire of all descriptions. Nothing could move without being fired on with accuracy.

    The Commanding Officer made two more efforts to hold a rearward position. Captain OSBORNE was sent to put two Anti-Tank guns up the road to prevent a Tank rush-in. They were got into action but received a direct hit almost immediately. Lieutenant WIGGIN was sent with the six remaining Carriers to try to get 4 Company back. He could not find 4 Company but got out the remaining personnel of 1 Company with great difficulty and some casualties, losing two Carriers - in one of these were 1 Company Officers (Major EVELYN, Lieutenant DURHAM, Lieutenant WIGGIN and Lieutenant BONHAM-CARTER); these did not return.

    Main Battalion HQ was still in touch with the Commanding Officer, but at about 0500 hours, owing to an increase in interference, Communication became more and more difficult. The last communication from the Adjutant to the Commanding Officer was that the Second-in-Command had gone to the SCOTS GUARDS HQ to meet the Brigadier and that the Brigadier has sent another personal message to the Commanding Officer praising his magnificent effort and saying that everything possible was being done but that help could not possibly arrive before evening of 17 March. The Commanding Officer replied to this that he had only been able to pick up the fact that the Brigadier was at the SCOTS GUARDS HQ and that he had not been able to make out the remainder of the message owing to the interference and all the noise from enemy fire that was going on around him. He said that he could not hear clearly enough to receive orders, so he himself would try to get back to meet the Brigadier. Almost immediately after this wireless communication with the Commanding Officer broke down, owing to his aerial being shot away.

    At 0915 hours Major O’BRIEN BUTLER, M.C., R.H.A., who had worked with the greatest coolness throughout the battle, drove up to the R.A.P. with eight wounded Guardsmen whom he had collected from the Wadi.

    The Second-in-Command had not returned to Main Battalion HQ owing to his conference with the Brigadier, and at 0525 hours Main Battalion HQ, the Consolidation Group and R.A.P. moved back across open country, back along the axis of advance, to the spot where the Battalion had leaguered the night 15/16 March. Dawn was breaking as the transport moved back and a few shells landed near the transport during the first five minutes of the move. Captain Viscout ANSON supervised the move back.

    Once back at the leaguer area, the Medical Officer and the Chaplain set to work to get the wounded back to the A.D.S. which was then six miles away over rough tracks. At that time the Medical Officer only had two ambulances at his disposal and he was getting short of shell dressings. Wounded were now coming in in a steady stream, some walking and others being carried on vehicles which had managed to get out of the Wadi. Some SCOTS GUARDS vehicles were bringing in our wounded also some of their own men who had been wounded.

    There were now many men waiting to be taken back to the A.D.S by ambulance, but two ambulances could not cope with the situation. BRIGADE had been in touch with 5 Light Field Ambulance about sending up more ambulances, dressings, and if possible another Medical Officer to help Captain WINDER, who had worked solidly with casualties ever since about 2200 hours 16 March. It was realised that these would take some time to reach the Battalion, so an ambulance service of the Battalion’s own 15 cwts (5 were used in all) was organised to take the less seriously wounded back to the A.D.S. The evacuation of the wounded continued until about mid-day.

    At about 0700 hours the Commanding Officer reported to the Brigadier at the SCOTS GUARDS HQ behind the escarpment. Having explained the situation to the Brigadier, the Commanding Officer received orders to withdraw and was promised Artillery smoke from 0845 - 0945 hours.

    On returning to the road block the Commanding Officer found that enemy shelling on the road, and accurate small arms fire from Point 117 and Point “A” was so heavy as to make runners to the Companies out of the question, so at 0845 hours 3 Company began to withdraw through the minefield to the Wadi. Some of 1 Company had already withdrawn to the Wadi on orders, but 4 Company either never received the message to withdraw, or were unable to do so. Anyhow, anyone remaining on Point 109 must have seen 1 Company being got out behind them, and the smoke, which was thin, provided some opportunity.

    At 0930 hours Sergeant SMITH’s Machine Gun Platoon was ordered out of action - this was successfully carried out with all equipment. Three men of the gun team were killed by a direct hit on the road block as they were carrying the guns out of action with the Commanding Officer.

    At about 0925 hours the Commanding Officer was withdrawing with 2 wounded and 3 other men on his Scout Car, when a shell landed nearby and wounded him in the mouth.

    He decided to await Artillery smoke.

    Sergeant DELEBECQUE’s scratch Platoon, with 3 Company, was the last to withdraw on foot, getting back on to the escarpment about noon. A number of isolated and wounded Other Ranks made their way back during the next 24 hours; Guardsman WRENCH bringing two wounded men who had been pinned down by fire in the Wadi.

    The Battalion reformed behind 2nd Battalion SCOTS GUARDS in the area from which it had started its abortive attack. Its casualties amounted to 278.
     
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    AFTER THOUGHTS ON THE HORSESHOE BATTLE

    1. There was insufficient information as to enemy defences and lack of time for reconnaissance.

    2. A Motor Battalion, weak in bayonet strength, is unsuitable for infantry assaults, unless it can use fully its supporting arms, e.g. Carriers, Mortars, M.M.Gs., etc, and its mechanised mobility. This is especially true of night assaults.

    3. Minefields, although they can if necessary, be crossed by infantry men, spell failure to vehicles.

    4. In an inexperienced, but enthusiastic Unit, heavy casualties, particularly among junior leaders, must be expected in a pitched battle. The latter expose themselves and cover more dangerous (mined) ground than their men.

    5. Every Company, Platoon and Section must have a sketch of the battle area and a compass bearing to work on, otherwise he may lose direction in the assault (as 4 Company did) and leave vital ground uncleared, e.g. Ring contour 577948 and Point 117.

    6. The most carefully laid-on communications - e.g. No. 18 Manpack sets, signal lines, lamps from Company HQ - will probably go wrong. Every Company, Platoon, Section and soldier must know the plan and be prepared to act on it without orders, certain for the first part of the battle.

    7. Always keep a reserve for mopping up or counter-attack. Assaulting platoons cannot mop up. We had no reserve Company owing to the width of our front and could not mop up as our Carriers were immobilized owing to mines.

    8. Subsequent clearing of the battlefield revealed the following:-

    (a) The minefields between the main road and the Wadi consisted mainly of Teller, Anti-Personnel Italian (2lb pressure) and a few “S” mines. The ROYAL ENGINEERS stated that they had never seen mines laid so thickly; they were practically touching.

    (b) The minefield to the west of the main road, which ran up to Points 117 and Point “A”, as well as along every road and track, consisted of Teller and “S” mines. Had the Battalion tried to cross this, nobody could have survived.

    (c) There were scattered Anti-Tank and Anti-Personnel mines on all open spaces between Point “A” and Points 109 and 117.

    (d) A small Anti-Tank ditch around the South side of the 109 feature would have prevented Carriers going straight up from that side.

    (e) The 117 feature dominated the ground far more than it was possible to appreciate from maps, photographs or a cursory examination from the East. It was from the German positions here than the road down the escarpment was kept under fine, and of course the main road, and reverse slopes of 3 and 1 Company areas were ideal targets for the 117 positions. 4 Company’s deviation from its direct route had allowed this vital feature to be missed out and there was no reserve left to deal with it. Incidentally air photographs available had been wrongly interpreted as regards fortifications on 117 feature, which were strong.

    (f) While the Artillery barrage had been very heavy, and had undoubtedly stunned the enemy, practically none of his trenches had received direct hits, though a few had caved in.

    (g) In order to collect some 69 bodies from the minefield, mostly lying in groups as knocked out by a mine, some 720 mines had to be lifted by ROYAL ENGINEERS with detectors and our own men.

    (h) The dead of the Battalion are mostly buried in a cemetery beside the road at 584948. Four GRENADIERS are unidentified.



    DOMESTIC POINTS
    (a) Officers and men were at 100% keenness and enthusiasm to make their first attack a success. The Battalion probably suffered 25% unnecessary casualties through getting too close to the barrage, as well as through undue exposed activity. It may be noted that in this case, this keenness got the assaulting Companies onto their objectives and made the operation a success in the w? sense - greater canniness might have saved life but could also have endangered the whole passage of the MARETH LINE, since our objectives would not have been captured.

    (b) Officers.
    Captain G.C.F. GUYER - Wounded by mine, died 8 days later in a German hospital.
    Captain J.R. ALLSOPP - Stepped on a mine and died immediately.
    Captain R.J.V. GOSS - Killed in a Carrier on a mine when going up to 3 Company position.
    Lieutenant W.C. HADEN - Shot by sniper and died from loss of blood on 3 Company position
    Lieutenant T.G. RIDPATH - Shot in head by sniper on 3 Company position.
    Lieutenant A.G. BUCHANAN - Wounded by mine, killed by mortar.
    Lieutenant J.K.W. SLOAN - Killed by sniper whilst withdrawing through minefield from 3 Company position.
    Lieutenant J.M. STRANG STEEL - Wounded by mine, killed by mortar later.
    Lieutenant Hon. H. TRENCHARD - Wounded in minefield, and later killed by mortar.
    Lieutenant C.N. GRAZEBROOK - Killed in a Carrier on a mine
    Lieutenant C.E.A. TRIMMER THOMPSON - Killed in a Carrier on a mine.
    Lieutenant N.S.T. MARGETSON - Killed by mortar (?) on 4 Company position.
     
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    From WO 169/10165 War Diary 6 Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, January - December 1943

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    From WO 169/10165 War Diary 6 Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, January - December 1943

    ACCOUNT OF THE ATTACK ON THE HORSESHOE FEATURE AT ST. GUELLA ON NIGHT 16/17 MARCH 1943.

    Note: This account covers incidents which took place at and around Advanced Battalion HQ. It has NOT been checked with other observers, other than the Battery Commander who accompanied Advanced Battalion HQ. Timings and the Sketch Map are compiled entirely from memory and are very approximate. Hence, the account may not only be to some extent inaccurate but it contains no details of the action as fought by the three forward Companies.

    -o-

    The Plan of 201 GUARDS BRIGADE was to attack with two Battalions up, Right 6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS; Left 3rd Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS; in support, behind 6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, 2nd Battalion SCOTS GUARDS. The notion of 6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS only is dealt with (see sketch). Artillery fired concentrations during Phase 2 and a heavy barrage during Phase 3. One Troop, Field Squadron ROYAL ENGINEERS under command 6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS.


    PHASE 1. ADVANCE TO START LINE.
    Battalion advanced on foot in bright moonlight to Start Line, without Artillery support. Advanced Battalion HQ moved in centre in line with leading Companies. Right 3 Company (GWYER), Left 4 Company (BUTLER); in support, behind 3 Company, 1 Company (EVELYN). ROYAL ENGINEERS party accompanied leading troops and laid Battalion Axis tape to be followed by Consolidation Group, under Second-in-Command (KINGSMILL) which moved by bounds as advance proceeded. No vehicles accompanied attacking troops. ROYAL ARTILLERY Battery Commander (O’BRIEN BUTLER) moved with Advanced Battalion HQ. Anti-Tank Platoon Commander moved for recce purposes with assaulting Companies leaving their Platoons to be sent forward by Consolidation Group as soon as a road had been prepared by ROYAL ENGINEERS down the high escarpment into the WADI BOU REMLI. Command vehicles, such as Commanding Officer’s and Company W/T vehicles, and Carrier Platoons, for mopping up exploitation, M.M.G. and Mortar vehicles, Anti-Tank Guns, etc also were to come forward as soon as the way was clear.

    Inter-comn was by No. 19 (manpack) W/T sets. These had been issued and assembled 2 days previously and were working badly. The Commanding Officer’s set gave up as Advance began - he temporarily used 1 Company’s set but returned it at beginning of Phase 2, expecting his own Scout Car (No. 19) set to arrive; this it did not do till about 2430 hours, so from 2200 - 0300 hours Commanding Officer was out of W/T touch with Companies. In any case 1 Company’s set and operators were destroyed early by a mine, 3 Company’s set gave up quite early and 4 Company was the only one which continued, rather indifferently till about 0400 hours 17 March.

    Speed of advance 100x in 3 minutes - time was ample and the Battalion formed up on Start Line without incident.


    PHASE 2. ADVANCE TO BARRAGE LINE.
    Assaulting Companies advanced to the escarpment (in places 100 feet high), clambered down gullies, crossed the broad Wadi bottom, and formed up square to objectives behind the line on which the Barrage was to come down.

    There had been a little enemy Artillery fire during this Phase and odd shells of our own may have fallen short: also there was some enemy S.A.A. fire, though our Artillery concentrations had been successful in keeping it down.

    The far bank of the Wadi was flat and difficult to find and both leading Companies (3 and 4) seemed to advance dangerously close up to the Barrage Line, particularly No. 4. O’BRIEN BUTLER agreed with Commanding Officer in this opinion, so Commanding Officer ordered both 3 and 4 Companies to come back slightly. This move was carried out but probably helped 4 Company to lose direction which it did later.


    Difficulties of control now increased by:-
    (a) the smoke left by Artillery concentrations, and later the barrage, which effectively obscured all objectives;
    (b) the fact that all assaulting troops were now in the enemy minefields and casualties were frequent;
    (c) Enemy shelling which increased.

    However, the forming up was completed successfully though there was not too much time.


    During this Phase the ROYAL ENGINEERS Troop located a possible route for vehicles down the escarpment and started work. Traffic Control party under the R.S.M. had been detailed and accompanied ROYAL ENGINEERS Troop. Consolidation Group moved up Axis to Start Line.


    PHASE 3. THE ASSAULT
    The Barrage came down, dealt for 4 minutes, then advanced at 100x in 4 minutes. The assaulting Companies were madly keen and tended to close up on the barrage. Two belts of wire heavily mined, as was the whole area, were crossed by there were many casualties both from mines and enemy shelling. The smoke hid everything and the noise was terrific. The enemy seemed to put down some D.F. fire but there was still little more than isolated L.M.G. opposition. It was extremely difficult to keep direction and Advanced Battalion HQ went too much to the right as was the general tendency of everyone.

    3 Company reached its objective on KSAR MEJENE and sent up the success signal amid cheers. A number of Germans were killed in the trenches but some must have been left under cover and these caused trouble later. Enemy workings were deep, in some cases concreted, and much more numerous than was expected.

    3 Company was not able to clear the whole length of the KASR MEJEN feature, at the Western end of which was strongly organised and held.

    4 Company should have followed the barrage to the neck between the 109 feature and ST. GUELLA. Instead, it lost direction and followed the left of 3 Company, crossing 1 Company, up on to the KSAR MEJENE feature. Here the Commanding Officer made touch with BUTLER, after seeing EVELYN (1 Company) on ring contour 580952 (in future called Point “A”, see sketch) and redirected 4 Company on to the 109 feature - thus 4 and 1 Companies exchanged objectives. This loss of direction was not surprising under the difficult conditions existing, it was indeed surprising that the Companies got so far cohesive and under control; the noise, smoke, darkness and mines and wire were more than confusing. The only trouble was that the slight delay in the advance caused by the redirection of Companies made the assaulting troops lose the barrage to some extent.

    4 Company continued its advance and very shortly the success signal went up on the left of the 109 feature. Again a number of enemy, including apparently M.M. Guns, remained undiscovered and these not only fired down the main road but also enfiladed both 3 and 4 Company positions.

    1 Company advanced satisfactorily onto Point “A”. Here EVELYN reported to the Commanding Officer that 4 Company had crossed him and was on his right so EVELYN was told to go to 4 Company’s original objective, as explained above and 4 Company was redirected.

    1 Company went off in great spirits with EVELYN keeping control with his hunting horn - the objective was taken and success signal sent up. Then for some unexplained reason 1 Company wen on and finally established itself on a feature ahead of 4 Company. This move was not discovered till later and 1 Company was not located till dawn: there was no W/T with 1 Company as its 18 set and team had been blown up in the minefield and only one runner got through.

    The barrage ceased at 2320 hours and the silence was broken only by the intermittent S.A. fire of undiscovered enemy posts. Battalion HQ cleared up some enemy around Point “A” capturing the prisoners and chasing off some others.

    GORDON (Anti-Tank Company Commander) reported to Battalion HQ about 2330 hours having completed his Anti-Tank recce of the right flank. He had been wounded in his leg but could still walk.


    PHASE 4. THE DEFENCE.
    All Companies were in position, No. 1 being too far out, by 2300 hours. Companies dug in to begin with and were only slightly interfered with by isolated enemy posts. This interference increased until by 0100 hours first 1 and then 4 Company were surrounded and 3 Company beat off two counter-attacks along its feature.

    By 2400 hours there was no sign of the Consolidation Group and their Commanding Officer, who was waiting anxiously for the Carriers with which firstly to clear up behind the Company localities and secondly to reinforce the Companies, went down the main road to see what had happened. An Anti-Tank Portee and a Carrier could be seen burning fiercely on the face of the escarpment and enemy shell and mortar fire in that area seemed heavy.

    The Intelligence Officer (VAUGHAN) who had been sent down earlier to investigate had not returned except to say that the road and both sides of it seemed to be mined and prisoners refused to walk except on the verges.

    On arrival at the end of the road the true state of affairs became apparent - the entire area was heavily mined - numerous Carriers and Portees had gone up as soon as they tried to leave the cleared track which was under continuous shell and mortar fire as well as L.M.G. fire.

    GOSS (2nd Captain No. 3) had located his Company and had been killed leading the Carriers up; ROWAN (Platoon Commander) had been blown up twice and finally knocked out by a mortar bomb.

    ALLSOPP (2nd Captain No. 4) whom the Commanding Officer had directed up to 4 Company, with the Carrier Platoon was killed with TRIMMER THOMPSON (Platoon Commander) in the same way.

    GRAZEBROOK (Anti-Tank Platoon Commander) came through the enemy to guide up 1 Company Carrier Platoon and was killed at once in the leading Carrier on a mine - thus there was no knowing where 1 Company was. WIGGIN (Platoon Commander) went off to find 1 Company and failed - he was sent again on this feat and again failed and reported the hillside East of 109 and ST. GUELLA full of enemy. This officer showed great initiative and drive throughout the night, he was the only Company officer available.

    At about 0030 hours the Commanding Officer’s No. 19 set in his Scout Car arrived and thus touch with Main Battalion HQ and 4 Company was restored.

    At about 0200 hours 3 Company asked for assistance, ammunition etc. Commanding Officer went forward with RIDPATH, who was commanding vice GWYER (died of wounds) and found the Company well dug-in and holding off attacks which were being put in from the North-West. The MIDDLESEX REGIMENT were then asked to fire their harrassing fire plan onto the end of KASR MEJENE, which they did with effect from 51st DIVISION area.

    About 0230 hours Commanding Officer reported situation to Main Battalion HQ and asked for reinforcements with which to clear the area and strengthen our hold on KASR MEJENE: he considered that two infantry Companies might have made it possible to retain the ground gained. This reinforcement could not be given and the Battalion was ordered to stay where it was.

    Throughout the night both the Battery Commander (O’BRIEN BUTLER) and F.O.O.s had frequently contacted the Commanding Officer; but without communications and with little knowledge as to the exact whereabouts of our own and enemy Troops it was almost impossible to call for Artillery support.

    At about 0400 hours OSBORNE (Anti-Tank Liaison Officer) and VAUGHAN (Intelligence Officer) were ordered to reorganise a collection of men and vehicles into:-
    (a) a Carrier Platoon
    (b) an Infantry Platoon under a good Sergeant (There were no officers available)
    (c) some complete Anti-Tank guns and crew

    When these appeared the Commanding Officer put the Carriers under WIGGIN with orders to go up the road (the forward road block had been pulled down) at first light and try to free the Companies on 109 and beyond.

    Sergeant DELEBECQUE took the infantry Platoon forward to KASR MEJENE (South end) to cover 4 Company’s withdrawal onto ring Point “A”. Commanding Officer spoke to BUTLER (4 Company) and ordered him back, but either the W/T was too bad or 4 Company was too weak, the withdrawal did not take place and 4 Company never came on the air again. OSBORNE put 2 Anti-Tank guns into action at the forward road block at dawn - beyond that, where he tried to go, SA fire was too heavy - 1 gun received a direct hit within five minutes.

    Sergeant SMITH’s M.M.G. Platoon, which had been put into action South-West of the rear road block, kept enemy L.A. - snipers down on Point “A” and other surrounding features.

    The ROYAL ENGINEERS Troop Commander, who with his dwindling party had worked continuously and notably throughout the night, now reported that he had only two men left. He went back to collect more with a view to assisting in getting the wounded out of the minefield in daylight.

    Stretcher bearers from the rear began to bring in such wounded as they could reach.

    At 0545 hours WIGGIN with 5 Carriers dashed up the main road, located 1 Company, and, got away some of the Other Ranks. EVELYN and his officer remained for the second journey - this was not successful as neither WIGGIN nor the other 1 Company officers have been seen since.


    PHASE 5. CONCLUSION.
    At dawn (0545 hours) enemy Artillery, Mortar and SA fire became continuous and any movement drew accurate fire. Enemy were on all surrounding features and it became evident that hanging on in present positions was useless waste of life whilst a co-ordinated withdrawal was impossible owing to lack of communications.

    The Commanding Officer’s link with Main Battalion HQ was by now very bad but it seemed that some kind of orders were trying to get through - so the Commanding Officer reported to BRIGADE HQ behind the escarpment at about 0700 hours. Having explained the position to the Brigade Commander the Commanding Officer received orders to withdraw and was promised Artillery Smoke at 0845 hours for one hour.

    On returning to the road block enemy fire was so heavy that there seemed no chance of reaching 3 Company, let alone 4 Company from whom nothing had been heard for 4 hours. So the Commanding Officer decided to await the smoke.

    At 0845 hours 3 Company began to withdraw through the minefield to the Wadi. By this time RIDPATH and SLOANE had both been killed, as also had HADEN who had gone forward voluntarily with Sergeant DELEBECQUE. GWYER had died with his C.S.M. in his Company locality. The Artillery Smoke was too thin to give satisfactory cover from view and as there was not the least chance of a message reaching 4 Company, if it still existed, the Company Commander decided it must be left - it should have seen 1 Company go past and in any case had been ordered to withdraw some hours before.

    At 0930 hours Sergeant SMITH’s M.M.G. was ordered out of action - this was successfully carried out with all equipment and wounded. Three men of this gun team were killed by a direct hit on the road block as they were carrying the guns out of action.


    PHASE 6.
    6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS reformed behind 2nd Battalion SCOTS GUARDS having lost 19 Officers and some 150 Other Ranks killed and missing; 4 Officers and about 100 Other Ranks wounded and evacuated.
     
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    6th Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS

    NEWS SUMMARY

    The casualties which the Battalion suffered at the Battle of the HORSESHOE March 16/17 made it necessary to reform the Battalion. Major W.H. KINGSMILL, M.C. took over command, Captain N.H. VILLIERS and Captain A.A. THORNE 1 and 3 Companies respectively.

    3 Company was at first very weak; it consisted of a Company HQ (C.S.M. EVERITT, C.Q.M.S. MANSBRIDGE) and one Platoon under Sergeant HARRISON.

    1 Company had a Company HQ (C.S.M. LEWIS, C.Q.M.S. WILLIAMS) and 3 Platoons under Sergeants GROGAN, BOLAN and BERRY.

    Sergeants SMITH and KEW commanded the M.M.G. Platoon.

    2/Lieutenant OLDFIELD came up to take command of the Carriers.

    2 Company under Captain P.C. BRITTEN (C.S.M. BURRELL, C.Q.M.S. NASH) could still find 8 guns, but up to the end of the campaign they never had an opportunity of shooting a German tank from their admirably concealed positions.

    A series of moves took place during the closing days of March until the Battalion found itself in Leaguer before the MARETH LINE evacuated by the enemy but still made dangerous by the numerous mines. Guardsman PENZER was blown up here and lost the sight of one eye. Major R.H. LOMER and Major P.W. MARSHAM had joined the Battalion now.

    We had an opportunity here to visit the HORSESHOE battlefield to bury our dead. On each of the last three days of March the PADRE with a party of volunteers, went out to the area to perform the difficult and deeply unpleasant task of burial and identification. See known dead to date at Appendix. But to understand the magnitude of their labour one must remember that the bodies lay in a thick minefield and that each had been dead for 13 days. 690 mines were lifted in clearing lanes to these bodies.

    A long and dusty drive took the Battalion from this position up through the MARETH LINE to GABES and the WADI AKARIT. Here the main road ran through our position to the enemy. No. 1 Company’s Cooker distinguished itself by over shooting our FDL’s and running into our enemy lines; the crew baled out but the Company dinner was lost. The Intelligence Officer spoke later to a German Prisoner of War who had been in that position and had eaten the captured dinner and had thought it extremely good. Lieutenant OLDFIELD was wounded here, in the arm, while commanding a Carrier patrol and had to be evacuated. Sergeant POLLARD took over the Carriers and commanded them until the end of the campaign with conspicuous success. A Section of Lieutenant HACKET PAIN’s Platoon (3 Company) was blown up during the crossing of WADI AKARIT, and Lance-Sergeant BERRIDGE, Lance-Corporal CHAMBERS, Guardsmen ROBINSON and STOKE were evacuated. Air Raids were a fairly frequent occurrence and one evening bombs fell in the ‘A’ Echelon area. Guardsman JUKES was fatally wounded also Guardsmen MOORE and REID.

    Once the WADI AKARIT was forced (April 6) the Battalion moved North through the Olive Grovers to SFAX, our first sight of civilisation since TRIPOLI. We took the welcome opportunity of cleaning ourselves and our equipment, of buying eggs and vegetables and of drinking some of the abundant local wine, but the respite was short. We were soon on the move again up the main road, crowded with every sort of traffic, hot and very dusty we reached SOUSSE. But before we left SFAX Lieutenant General Sir Oliver LEESE visited the Battalion. He explained to us the importance of the battle of the HORSESHOE and assured us that our sacrifices had not been in vain - that they had indeed been vital to the success of General MONTGOMERY’s attack - and congratulated the Battalion and the BRIGADE upon upholding in every way the traditions of the Regiment and the BRIGADE of GUARDS.

    At SOUSSE 100 Other Ranks formed a Guard of Honour under Major P.W. MARSHAM for General MONTGOMERY. There was much acclamation by the local inhabitants.

    But our next position recalled what we were beginning to forget, that the enemy was still strong and eager to fight. We took over a part of the N.Z. line before ENFIDAVILLE, an open cornfield, overlooked by the enemy, infested with innumerable mosquitos. For these two reasons movement by day and sleep by night were equally impossible. Meals were taken before sunrise and after sunset and the peace of daytime was disturbed only by intermittent shellfire and an occasional raid. For Sergeant POLLARD and his men lift was less leisured. The accomplished a series of patrols, sometimes under shell fire and always under observation and on the day of the main attack were the first troops into ENFIDAVILLE and the first to reconnoitre and find a route up which the BRIGADE could advance.

    ‘B’ Echelon has not so far been mentioned in this account. During the performance of other duties the Quartermaster has acquired two and Guardsman DURRANT a goat, and the whole Echelon were pleasantly accommodated in some well timbered parkland a few miles from SOUSSE. However none of these distractions prevented the regular arrival of mail and good rations.


    The capture of TAKROUNA - ENFIDAVILLE brought us to our last two positions under the EIGHTH ARMY. The enemy’s shelling, though not nearly as heavy as our own, was accurate and unpleasant and the habitual mosquito as active as before. Guardsman HOWLAND, one of the best fitters in the Battalion was killed by shellfire when on his way up to the line. The BRIGADE was lucky in that the attack which it had been ordered to perform was twice postponed and finally cancelled. Investigation of the ground later showed that the strength of the German position and the depth of his minefields would have made any assault extremely costly. Here the Commanding Officer rejoined the battalion from hospital.

    Instead, the BRIGADE, with 7th ARMOURED DIVISION and 4th INDIAN DIVISION was sent round by the left which brought us a few days later to an area South of MEDJEZ EL BAB. Here we spent two days in preparation for the final attack on TUNIS. Our stay was enlivened with visits and return visits from the 3rd and 5th Battalions GRENADIER GUARDS whom we found not far away.

    There is little to be said about that last attack. The Battalion which had been allotted a dangerous and solitary role found itself on the first evening caught up in the general advance and carried forward unimpeded and practically unshelled. That evening we were within 20 miles of TUNIS, the next within 10 miles and the following morning our O.P. could see in the distance the town itself.

    A certain amount of spoil had fallen to the Battalion already, notably a VOLKSWAGEN for the PADRE and a big tourer for the police, also a large van for the canteen. This time 6th ARMOURED DIVISION with 201st GUARDS BRIGADE under command pushed very rapidly Eastward through the pass of HAMMAN LIF and on to HAMMAMET, thus cutting off all the troops who had originally opposed and were still holding up EIGHTH ARMY. This thrust was throughout lead by the two GUARDS BRIGADES (1st GUARDS BRIGADE and 201st GUARDS BRIGADE). An enormous number of prisoners with equipment of every kind fell to the BRIGADE in this push, which was one of continuous movement and always close upon the enemy. As its result, our ancient enemy, the 90th LIGHT DIVISION, found British troops at its back and was eventually forced to surrender, though it was the last German formation to do so.

    So ended the TUNISIAN campaign, Since our arrival at MEDININE (1 March) the Battalion had been almost continuously in the line. Every position take up by the EIGHTH ARMY was held in part by our BRIGADE, though after MARETH the weakness on our number prevented us from leading any of the assaults, our role of leaning upon the enemy, deceiving him of the real intention and pinning him to the ground was not unimportant in the general scheme.

    Our history since then is very quickly told. A short rest spent at BOU FICHA camp was marred by an explosion, possibly by a buried time bomb, which killed Lance-Corporal DUNNETT, the best technician of the Battalion, Guardsmen SPENCER and KEEN and wounded amongst others C.S.M. BURRELL. We were soon ordered to a North coast port to find Prisoner of War guards and escorts and here we have remained ever since. As this is being written a large number of reinforcements are beginning to appear and with their welcome arrival will begin the period of preparation for our next encounter.
     
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    THE WAR IN TUNISIA - MARETH AND BEYOND - British Pathe
    Tunisia.

    Various shots of the troops of the 8th Army waiting and preparing for the attack on the Mareth Line. Close up shots of faces of soldiers as they wait. A detachment of troops take a Communion held on a patch of waste desert before the action. Several shots of the Sherman tanks moving across dusty desert, infantry men get a lift on them. Close up shots of marching feet on soft sand. Unit of men marching forward. Close up shots of soldiers waiting for start of action. Line of Hurricane planes taxi across desert airstrip, they fly low overhead. Desert at dusk. Various shots of the night barrage. Several shots of the engineers flattening out the bank of the Wadi so that tanks can cross it easier. Tanks, including one Sherman, moving through the gap cleared area. Various shots of the artillery barrage pounding the Mareth Line, infantry men hide from the shell bursts. Ground to air shots of Junkers 88 flying through the shell bursts in the distant skies. Long shot of Junkers catching fire, heading down and hitting the ground. Close up shot of a map showing advance of allied troops in Tunisia. Air view of the convoy moving across the desert. Several shots of the American troops at the ready in the El Guettar sector. Various shots of the American troops in their half tracks moving through Sened and Maknassy. Americans round up German prisoners. Various air to air shots of Boston bombers over desert. They let their bombs go - good shot - we see them land. Various shots of the 8th Army unit including New Zealanders moving forward with bayonets at the ready. They move through now empty section of the Mareth Line. Bren gun carrier moving past bombed building on the outskirts of Mareth town. Close up shots of a group of wounded soldiers. Some are British, some German. Various shots of line of German and Italian prisoners on the move. General Freyberg and General Bernard Montgomery standing together outside Montgomery's caravan. Montgomery posing with a group of soldiers.
     
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    The National Archives | DocumentsOnline | Image Details
    Name: Gordon, Alastair Joseph Edgar
    Rank: Captain, Temporary Major
    Service No: 45365
    Regiment: 6 Motor Battalion Grenadier Guards
    Theatre of Combat or Operation: Middle East (Egypt and Libya)
    Award: Military Cross
    Date of Announcement in London Gazette: 19 August 1943
    Date: 1943
    Catalogue reference: WO 373/25
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    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019

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