58th Chemical Warfare Company Royal Engineers - 1940

Discussion in 'Royal Engineers' started by MALLARD, Feb 23, 2010.

  1. Buteman

    Buteman 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA Patron

    No LG date means can't find a date when the award would have been announced in the London Gazette.
  2. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Sounds like you are doing fine to me mate....LG is London Gazette.

    The 58th CW Coy were at Renescure-The MM citation above says so:

    At Renescure on 23rd May brought his truck away successfully under enemy fire.

    I suspect Hardy's citation was written by Maj. Lloyd and Lloyds by his CO.

    Does anyone know what the higher RE formation would be for this company or were they independent? I noticed another CW Company today (Sixty something) when I was trawling today through citations.

    MALLARD Member

    Thanks to dbf 62 pointing me in the right direction (one of my 'ask the audience' life lines, hopefully not the last) I have located an MC to Captain (Temporary Major) Thomas Ifan Lloyd Royal Engineers on LG page 5210 gazetted for 27/8/1940. I suspect this is the same T.I. Lloyd who prepared the statement posted by Ramacal (posts #27 to #32 on this thread).
    As a footnote, Lt. Col T. I Lloyd DSO, MC is also gazetted as ‘Mentioned’ on page 1553 with the number (26985), I've not yet found his DSO details and Brigadier Thomas Ifan Lloyd DSO, MC later published civil engineering papers and books on railways and roadways. So far I have been unable to trace anything further.

    On page 5203 also dated 27 August 1940 is the MM to 817658 Driver Albert John Hardy Royal Engineers.
    From his military records it would appear that Driver Hardy enlisted in London in 1933 and was a Driver (Horse Transport) not motor transport. His wife also has a number of cups and medals from his horse riding/jumping and boxing for the army.

    The citation to A J Hardy has the incorrect initials A T, his wife tried to have this corrected but was told that the original citation with the incorrect initials had to stand.
    (This did not surprise her as her father’s WW1 ‘death penny’ had the name incorrectly spelt).

    I’m still stuck as to other members of this relatively small group and their activities before leaving France as part of the evacuation.

    John, Mallard
  4. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    DoD 6.10.81

    CBE LG 1.1.57

    DSO LG 1.3.45 for NWE

    MC LG 27.8.40 for BEF

    MiD LG 22.3.45

    Lloyd held various postwar appointments until his retirements in 1957. Brother of Chaplain HM Lloyd.

    The Distinguished Service Order 1924-2008. James Sutherland.
  5. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Just found this scrolling through some BEF citations mate.

  6. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Good job I don't empty my recycle bin :D

    MALLARD Member

    I’ve just come back from six days in France some of which might be of interest, some may be helpful and other bits may just be boring (just skip the bits that are of no interest! It’s a bit of a mish-mash of subjects and I’m more than happy if bits or even all of it gets moved to more appropriate threads).

    Before going I visited the widow of Driver A. J Hardy MM, 58th Chemical Warfare Company Royal Engineers and returned the notes I had on loan. With her agreement I had a small memorial plaque made to take over to France, hoping that the local authorities might be persuaded to allow the plaque to be put in the village where Driver Hardy’s actions contributed to his MM. Frankly I was totally ‘gob smacked’ (not easy in French), not only did the local authorities agree but the mayor offered to personally place the plaque in an appropriate public area as part of the village’s WW2 liberation festival and to send photographs back to his widow. This was very much a one off and I don’t think every French town or mayor would be so willing but in this case they could not have been more helpful.
    I also visited Argues where among the few British war graves there is one to Captain J M H Hoare BOAC 23rd May 1940, I wonder what the story is there? I also took photographs of a few Royal Northumberland Fusiliers gravestones from those buried at Arques in WW2 so if anyone wants these pictures let me know.
    Have any forum members come across Le Guide National des Aires de Service? It lists sites available for motorhomes either free or for a very small charge of about 2 Euros per night. For the motorhome owning members it might be worth looking at. The guide in English appears to be available from www.vicariousbooks.co.uk the French guide is via camping-car@editions-lariviere.fr and there is also one at www.facilemedia.nl that is unless you buy a copy in a bookshop for about 10 Euros. If it’s of any interest there is an excellent municipal campsite at Arques on the outskirts of St Omer. To upset almost everyone in the UK, diesel in April is 1.12 Euros in France and 1.08 Euros in Belgium; petrol is much more at around 1.45 Euros and food is far more expensive than the UK, about double the Sainsbury’s normal price in supermarkets, only made bearable by the price of wine especially in 3Ltr boxes!
    Returning using Norfolk Line we arrived at Dunkirk earlier than anticipated and were able to change our booking to an earlier ferry at no extra charge – now that’s certainly something that most ferry companies won’t do without paying extra.

    dbf, von Poop and Buteman like this.
  8. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Hi John,

    Well done on the plaque and when do we get to see the pictures. I hope you took some where Major Lloyd earned his MC.

  9. Buteman

    Buteman 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA Patron


    Well done on the Driver Hardy plaque.

    Sent you a message with details on another thread with an answer to your BOAC question.

    Regards - Rob

    PS - Thanks for getting me the RA photos.

    MALLARD Member

    ANDY, I dragged my wife, kicking and screaming something about clothes shops, hurting feet and naming WW2TALK in a divorce action around as much of the area as possible and, as you've probably gathered, took a lot of photographs. I'm not sure that I have the exact location of Major Lloyd's MC activity, it may be somewhere in my mass of, as yet, unsorted info. If so there will probably be a photograph somewhere. As to the plaque, it will be put in place on 8th May and hopefully I'll get to see a copy of the photograph, if so and I can work out how to post photographs, I'll get a copy onto the forum. Some of the roads in the area are VERY narrow with deep drainage ditches alongside and few pull-off places so it was a case of what and where available. I did risk life and limb to drive into St. Omer, stupidly on a Saturday, to the area where Driver Williams won his MM (although I didn't see your post until coming back to the UK), all the bridges look remarkably new, no prize for the reason. As this was an add-on to a business trip time was a bit limited.

    ROB, Thanks for the PM, I note that the other BOAC graves are in the UK and several crew members, the one at Arques on the outskirts of St. Omer is with a few British soldiers and a couple of Unknowns, it will be interesting to find out exactly what happened.

    ALL, I am in no doubt that without the assistance of forum members (a) the plaque would never have been considered, (b) neither I, my cousin or most importantly the widow of a brave British soldier would have had such an insight into a brief thumbnail of a WW2 action and (c) I would have found such an interesting research 'hobby'. Trouble is it’s addictive!

    John, Mallard
  11. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    Great stuff John, well done with the memorial plaque.

  12. britman

    britman Senior Member

    Great stuff John, well done with the memorial plaque.


    Totally agree, what a great read this thread is. Kudos to John and everyone!
  13. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    Thanks for the additional bits of the jigsaw. I’ve been tracing various bits onto a large scale map of the area which helps considerably. From the information provided by von Poop (link #3); Owen (link #5); Ramacal (several links) and you (several links) it would appear that the group I’ve been looking at were the part of 58th CW Coy. RE with 392nd Battery of the 98th Field Regiment Royal Artillery sent up to form part of the defence between St Momelin and Wittes. (would this have been Don Detail?) With one gun with its detachment sent to cover each of the bridges at St Momelin, St Omer, Arques, Renescure, Wardrecques, Blaringhem and Wittes. I assume these would have been 25 pounders but I am willing to stand corrected on this. The report indicates that on the 23rd A Squadron, 12th Lancers with five armoured cars was sent forward to reconnoitre the St Omer area and arrived in time to cover the 392nd Battery's withdrawal of their gun from Arques to Morbecque and extricate a party of Royal Engineers under fire of enemy tanks and enemy infantry on the ridge near Lynde, also having an encounter with enemy tanks astride the road from St Omer to Cassel near La Cross. Although the report indicates that 12th Lancers found no British troops in the area St Omer–Renescure–Lynde or between Renescure and Hazebrouck it seems possible that the REs on the ridge at Lynde could have been from any of the bridge locations however Renescure or Blaringhem are the closest and the ridge between Renescure and Lynde is the only clearly indicted higher ground I can identify in the area. Perhaps when I get there and walk the area I will have a different perspective.
    I’m still very new to this type of research and so don’t want to make assumptions based on insufficient evidence. I will very much appreciate any comments from those of you who are obviously far more knowledgeable both on the subject and the research criteria. This started because I was loaned a notebook which it now appears was written several years after the events when the memory could reasonably be blurred. Having started the question (as the saying goes) I’ll finish, but, mixing my TV programmes, I’m obviously going to need more than just three lifelines.

    What does 'No LG date' stand for please?
    John, Mallard

    23rd May 1940

    Early in the morning orders were received for a reported enemy penetration in the area of St. Omer to be verified and A Sqn was dispatched to report on the situationin the area. Maj. A.M. Horsbrugh-Porter reported that there were only a few R.E.s and R.A. batteries in the area; that the enemy had infact been able to cross in the area of Renescure H1950, and that it had been asked to counter-attack the enemy to enable the R.E.s to withdraw from Renescure and to enable a battery to be recovered. The C.O. gave permission for this attack to be made, and A Sqn counter-attacked the enemy infantry on the high ground to the North and N.W. of Renescure, inflicted a number of casualties and held up their advance sufficiently long for the guns to withdraw.
  14. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

  15. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

  16. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

  17. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

  18. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    58th Chemical Warfare Coy were under 50 Div on the 23rd May but 1 Chemical Warfare's War Diary mentions a request to the GOC to get 58 Coy away from 50 Div to come under the command of 1 CW Grp for the pupose of dealing with the 'urgent and obscure situation on the right sector.'

    Let me know if you want the full entry typed up.


    MALLARD Member

    Andy, Thanks for the PM and this additional info. I've been off the radar for a while thanks to a 1930 2 seater Austin 7 with a racing history that has needed a lot and still needs some rebuilding (the difference between an man and a boy is the price of his toys!) Anyway, I'm still facinated by this very small group of soldiers. I'm also rather taken with Renescure and the surrounding area and will no doubt be going back sometime next year. Any further info is very welcome as long as it doesn'y take up too much of your time.

    John Mallard

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