Which Armoured Regt (Gordons) rescued pilot Kinbin area 21/12/1944-5/1/1945

Discussion in 'Burma & India' started by mikky, May 19, 2019.

  1. mikky

    mikky Member

    I'm trying to identify which battalion/unit of Gordon Highlanders were in Burma around Christmas and New Year 1944, in the Kinbin area, about 50 miles north-west of Schwebo.

    I'm researching a local man, Wing-Commander 122153 Kenneth MacVicar of the 28th Squadron, R.A.F., who took off in Hurricane 2C 299 on the 21st of December, 1944, on a reconnaissance mission from Tamu, roughly following the path of the road, his target, the town of Ye-U about 80 miles south-east of Tamu. He came to grief after exiting Ye-U and crash-landed near the village of Kinbin. He spent the next five days evading Japanese troops of the Guards. On Boxing Day 1944 after having made his way in a north-westerly direction, he met advancing British troops and managed to be rescued safely, by troops from the Gordon Highlanders. These troops were apparently involved in a large battle in the next few days, i.e., approximately from the 26th December 1944 to the ?? January 1945.


    I'm keen to find more on this story and am trying to identify which unit this might have been (Gordon Highlanders, in tanks, of the Second Division); Kenneth MacVicar wrote an excellent account of his life in his book "The Wings of the Morning" This story is well covered but not as strong in detail of places dates and times. Any given in the book are mentioned here. He was a younger brother of the author Angus MacVicar of "Salt in my porridge" fame.

    I thought it might have been:

    "The 9th (Donside) Battalion (originally part of the 9th (Highland) Infantry Division along with the 11th Battalion) were initially posted to the Shetland islands. Later they were amalgamated with the 5th Battalion and sent to India for training. Converted to an armoured regiment, as the 116th Regiment Royal Armoured Corps (Gordons) they were sent to Burma. As part of 255th Indian Tank Brigade, they were involved in the dash for Rangoon and were heavily involved in the battle of Meiktila, signalling the end of Japanese hopes in Burma."

    I now have the diary for the 116th Regiment Royal Armoured Corps (Gordons) RAC, [ WO 172/4597 - Jan-Dec 1944 WO 172/7342 - Jan-Sep 1945] but there seems to be no mention of this incident in the diary and the place names seem to be well away from the Kinbin area. (See attached pic)

    Any thoughts on this unit of Gordon Highlanders. Could it possibly be "The 8th (City of Aberdeen) Battalion converted to artillery, becoming the 100th Anti-Tank Regiment, Royal Artillery. This battalion served with the 2nd Infantry Division in the Burma Campaign."

    Cheers Mike
     

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