Ok... another 53rd Division War Diary this was 'rushed' onto my list as I realised I had promised to get this done rather sharpish for a person I met in France. The originals are handwritten... italics show hard to read areas. The tenses may shift but this is due to it being a day by day account and all hadn written/signed each day. Totally different to the 4th Welch's War Diary, this is far more 'boys own/readable' in my opinion. Also arguably more 'human'... I did up to near the end of July today. The slaughter on the 17th July was during the battle for Evrecy, 158 Brigade was devastated, with most officers becoming casualties. There is a reason Evrecy is written into pretty much every Fusiliers mind and seen as the darkest moment in the 53rd's fighting of the whole war. June 1944 – War Diary 7th Bn The Royal Welch Fusiliers From 1st June 1944 to 30th June 1944 Appendices No 1 to No 5 CO: Major WH Clement Location – Maidstone 3rd June – Battalion strength, 36 officers, 792 other ranks. 4th June – 1130 – CO conducted cloth model exercise on action in various areas after landing on the Continent. All officers and sergeants attended. [Ssee Appendix 1] 1430 – Conducted further cloth model exercise for officers only. 1630 – CO addressed all ranks on the football field and passed on messages from General Montgomery Preparations for War continues. Waterproofing of vehicles now completed in first stage. Trial loading held last week 5th June – Preparation for War continues. 6th June – News received of Allied landings on the continent. 8th June – The Colonel of the Regiment (Major-General NM Wilson) addressed the Battalion and bade us farewell. The Brigade Command [did so?] afterwards. Overlord Order Instructions No.1 issued, the first men received Op Instructions to be issued by the Battalion. [See Appendix No. 2] 10th June – 0930 – CO, Adjutant and Intelligence Officer to Brigade to study certain possible lines in France. Battalion strength 37 Officers, 823 other tanks. 11th June – 1000 – Brigade Church Parade in Mote Park followed by an address from the Division Command. 13th June – 1800 – CO conducted Cloth Model on Night attack. The Battalion is still loaded and vehicles waterproofed ready to move off at short notice. 15th June – Battalion Recce Party under Captain Davie left for Marshalling and Embarkation. Areas the Battalion is now tied up to leave England. 16th June – 1400 – Adjutant to Brigade to receive movement instructions Battalion Order Groups at 1615 hours. The Battalion leaves tomorrow. 17th June – Final preparations completed. The Battalion is absolutely ready to move. Vehicles leave at 1000 hours to go to a Marshalling area North of the Thames. Marching troops leave by rail at 1600 hours to go to a Marshalling area North of Lewes. The preparations for this move have gone very smoothly owing to the hard work of all ranks specifically the CO, 2IC, Adjutant and Orderly Room Staff under Sergeant Phillips. The morale of this Battalion is at its very highest and all are already to take what is to come at to give it. So after almost four years of waiting the 7th Battalion goes to War. [See Appendix No.4] 1949 – Marching troops arrive dat Marshalling Camp 2 miles North of Isfield after an uneventful train journey. Location – Marshalling Camp, Isfield 18th June – Battalion strength 36 Officers and 812 other Ranks. [See Appendix No.5] 19th and 20th June – Marching troops carried out training and after marched in organized bodies to Isfield. 21st June – Marching troops should have left for Embarkation Area today but was postponed. The 2IC (Major GFT Dixon) is commanding the Marching Troops, and the CO the transport. 22nd and 23rd June – Marching troops departure still delyed. The camp provides cinema and stage shows and the Fusiliers sing to assist in passing the time. Location – The English Channel 24th June – First craft load of marching troops left the Marshalling area in transport for Newhaven the port of Embarkation. The Battalion is split up between the LCI (large) having approximately 190 all ranks abroad each craft, the 2IC is in command of one, Major Menzies the second and Major [Wann-illegible] the third. Battalion embarked at 1500 hours. At 2000 hours the convoy formed up in the Channel outside the Harbor. At about 2400 hors the convoy sailed. Location – The Field 25th June – After a very calm crossing, the Battalion arrived at its destination – the coast of Normandy. At 1330 hours the fist men disembarked onto a pontoon at La Riviere near Ver Sur Mer (map ref 9285). After disembarking straight to Assembly Area near Creully. At about 2000 hours the Battalion was lifted by Troop Carrying Company, RASC to the Brigade Concentration area near Trungy (7771) – south of Bayeux. Hear the Battalion Advance Party under Captain J Davies put the Battalion into form. We are in rear of 50th Division who are fairly thin on the ground therefore we had to take a proper Battalion defensive position. 26th June – Quiet day spent improving positions. The transport has still not arrived. In the afternoon the Intelligcent Officer (Lt CP Dryland) went to 10 DLI to spend the night with that unit in the frontline. 27th June – The Battalion transport arrived this morning. We are now all present in France,. NO casualties in route to either personnel or vehicles. 28th June – Waiting for movement orders, CO and Intelligence officer to Brigade in morning. 29th June – 1600 – CO attended conference held by General Montgomery at Divisional HQ but was called out in middle and given orders to move. Recce Parties left at 1700 hours for the new position at Bretteville L’Orgueilleuse (9272) when we are the taking over from 1st Battalion Welsh Guards. 30th June – 1830 – Battalion marching troops and transport arrived and took over position. Day spend improving position. We are not yet in the front line but about 3 miles from the nearest Bosch. So ends the eventful month of June 1944. Next month the Battalion will test its metal against the Huns having waited 5 years for the opportunity to do so. IO, 7th Bn The Royal Welch Fusiliers 3rd July 1944  LCI = Landing Craft Infantry  Find out name of Major – Wennink?