1st Bn The Black Watch . 1944.

Discussion in 'British Army Units - Others' started by vermesch, Oct 11, 2023.

  1. vermesch

    vermesch Member

    Je recherche tous renseignements sur le 1er bataillon du Black Watch Régiment dans la région de Dunkerque en septembre et octobre 1944.
    MercI pour votre aide !
  2. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

    154th Brigade, 1st BW, 7th BW and 7th A&SH, Relieved 4th Special Service Brigade on 26th September 1944, 7th Argylls took up position right on the coast, 4 miles North-East from Dunkirk at Bray Dunes Plage. 3miles south of them and Inland were 7th BW at Ghyvelde, while 1st BW were right at the other side of the town to the west. The Brigade covered 25 miles of perimeter. the Brigade was relieved 8th/9th October by the Czech Brigade.
    4jonboy, Owen and dbf like this.
  3. Aeronut

    Aeronut Junior Member

    My father, Lt C A Mellor, was the 1st Battalion’s Signals Officer between June and November 44. Post war he was sent an account of the Battalion’s war written by its CO, Col Hopwood. The following is the section from that account covering the Battalion’s time spent at Dunkirk.

    On 25th September, the Brigade left Le Havre for Dunkirk where it was to relieve the 4th Special Service Brigade who were surrounding the enemy garrison there. The move up took two days, staying outside Foret de Crecy en route. The Battalion arrived in a concentration area North of St Omer by mid-day 26th September, and the necessary recce's were immediately carried out, so that the relief could be carried out that night. The relief started at 2000 hours and was duly completed by 0100 hours without incident. The dispositions of the Battalion were three companies up, “C” right, “A” centre and “B” left, with Battalion Headquarters and Support Company in the village of Loon Plage, which was approximately 2000 yards behind the forward companies. This distance was perhaps not so excessive as it sounds, when it is realised that the three forward companies covered a frontage of approximately 3 miles. Our sojourn in the Dunkirk area was comparatively uneventful except that “C” and “A” Companies, who were living in farmhouses, were fairly heavily shelled on one or two occasions. As a result, some changes were made, which deceived the Boche, who more than once continued to shell the old areas. Up to 2nd October, when a truce was made to evacuate the civilian population, one deserter came into our lines. It was hoped that by an increase in artillery action the rate of desertion might be stepped up. This however, was exceedingly difficult, as we had only one battery of 25-pounders, one battery of Bofors and some heavy anti-aircraft guns in support, and the 25-pounders were limited to 20 rounds per gun per day. It was therefore decided to run an improvised ammunition echelon between Dieppe and Loon Plage, a distance of 120 miles, found from our own “B” Echelon 3-tonners which were offloaded for the purpose. This system worked well, and the 25-pounder battery was able to fire 100 rounds per gun per day, while the mortar platoon fired up to 2000 bombs per day. Needless to say, most of this ammunition was accumulated during the quite period between 3rd and 6th October, when the truce was in operation. As a result of our increase in artillery and mortar fire, two Boche deserters came in, stating that they “Couldn’t stand it”, and they even went so far as to pinpoint a platoon area, and also gave the location of their own company Headquarters. The increase in deserters was not perhaps in proportion to the increased rate of ammunition expenditure, but it was felt that the increase in Boche discomfiture probably was. During the battalion’s tour of duty at Loon Plage, Lieut. J C Soulsby and 12 men were wounded, 2 other ranks killed and 1 other rank missing (POW). In addition, Major I H Kerr, Officer Commanding “C” Company, left the Battalion for England, where he had been detailed to give lectures on the fighting in Normandy since our landing.

    On 7th October, the Battalion was relieved by 7th Royal Tank Regiment and proceeded to an assembly area immediately behind Loon Plage. On the following day, the move to Holland started, staging the night 8-9th October at Aalst, approximately 10 miles South of Brussels, and arriving at Leishout, North of Eindhoven on 9th October.

    In addition to Col Hopwood’s account my father wrote to my mother mentioning the Dunkirk truce.

    We have had a rather amusing incident in our little war these last few days _ we’ve had a truce which officially ended at 10 o’clock this morning. This truce was for the purpose of evacuating civilians, and both sides provided guards at the exit. On one side were the jocks laden with cigarettes and on the other side were Germans laden with French Francs. It is easy to see what happened and if you are at all interested the market price of 10 Players Medium fluctuated between 200 & 500 Francs (NB. there are 200 Frs to the £) One wit was said to have tried to arrange a football match with them, but I wouldn’t believe that if I were you. Still that’s all passed now, and once again we are sending the shells and the bombers over _ just to cheer them up like.
    dryan67, 51highland and dbf like this.
  4. vermesch

    vermesch Member

    Merci beaucoup pour votre aide car nous essayons avec la société d’Histoire de Dunkerque d’améliorer la connaissance de la participation britannique au siège de Dunkerque en 144 1945.
  5. vermesch

    vermesch Member

    Merci pour votre réponse qui complétera notre histoire du siège de Dunkerque en 1944 1945.
  6. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Both your replies had your message inside the quote.
    I have edited them so your messages are outside the quoted posts.
  7. vermesch

    vermesch Member

    Bonjour,Je suis à la recherche de photos du 1er Black Watch durant cette période pour illustrer mes recherches historiques sur les combats autour de Dunkerque en 1944

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