The 8th Battalion Sherwood Foresters in Norway April 1940

Discussion in 'WW2 Battlefields Today' started by Steve Foster, Dec 13, 2011.

  1. Magnum

    Magnum Member

    Hi Rabbit
    Very good photo editing!
    No other comments needed.
  2. Callisto

    Callisto Twitter ye not

    Rabbit nice photoshopping, in the style of Larenkov.
    (though i myself prefer b&w to sepia)

    Pity a good thread has turned out like seems to be another one of those failures to communicate.:unsure:

    Attached Files:

  3. Rabbit

    Rabbit Senior Member

    .....Thanks guys...
  4. Magnum

    Magnum Member

    German troops only 50 km south of Lillehammer.
    "On the old road E6, today called: Turistvegen between Moelv - Lillehammer"

    Attached Files:

  5. Steve Foster

    Steve Foster Senior Member

    Thanks for that Magnum. It is interesting to see Lake Mjosa in your photographs. The Germans advanced on both side of this long thin lake running North/South through the lower Gudsbrandahl valley.

    This caused real problems for 148 Brigade who were forced to split their force to defend each side of the lake; as the brigade was very understrength with only one and half battalions, it meant they only had 2.5 rifle companies on each side with no communications between the two. This two front battle meant they were only capable, once contact had been made, of conducting fighting withdrawals with companies withdrawing through each other to maintain a reserve.

    It was only wher the lake narrows to a river at Tretten could the Brigade join forces and conduct a "stand" in strength.
  6. Magnum

    Magnum Member

    German troops only 50 km south of Lillehammer.
    Att. a photo from 2010 from the same place as in 1940. (Turistvegen).

    Attached Files:

  7. Rabbit

    Rabbit Senior Member

    well done Magnum

    Attached Files:

  8. Magnum

    Magnum Member

    Well done Max!!
    It´s 70 years between the photos but sometimes it seems that time has stood still ...
  9. Magnum

    Magnum Member

  10. Steve Foster

    Steve Foster Senior Member

    Hi Magnum,

    Yes, I have been reading them with interest. The German film "Kampf um Norwegen" on post 2 is very interesting showing how they had air and armour superiority over the British soldiers.

    Post 8 with your pictures of Kvam is also very interesting. It was here, after the German Army Division Pelengahr had destroyed the Territorial soldiers of 148 Brigade at Tretten, that 15 Brigade made a successful stand. 15 Brigade was a Yorkshire regular army brigade from the BEF and had all the equipment 148 brigade did not have. They were used skillfully by the Brigadier with each battalion covering the other and accounted for many German tanks with their anti-tank artillery. In fact they halted the German advance north and only withdrew when orders were received from UK to withdraw to Andalsnes for disembarkation to England.

    Whilst at Kvam in 2010 I spent many hours in the museum and that is where I took the photos of Colonel Ford of the Sherwood Foresters surrendering at Tretten. The currator had been told it was Colonel German of the Leicesters, but after showing him photos of both people, he changed the inscription under the photo.

    Your photo at post 6 of British troops in a civilian lorry must be either Foresters or Leicesters, it was only 148 Brigade that was that far south.

    Thanks for all of your inputs Magnum. The photograph of the memorial to Sergeant Dahsrud of the Norwegian Army I took when walking around the battle sites at Tretten. He was killed on the same day as my father was wounded at Tretten. The Norwegian army had a battalion of Dragoons at the Tretten Rindheim position fighting with the Sherwood Foresters and he was probably from that unit. Our guide, Mr Sandvik from the Tretten Historical Society, said that Sergeant Dahlsrud was shot by the German after being captured.

    Pictures below:

    1. Memorial to Sgt Dahlsrud.
    2. Bavarian Mountain Regiment 345 advance to contact past tanks of Panzerabteilung zbV 40 near Tretten.
    3. Tanks of Panzerabteilung zbV 40 near Tretten.
    These were the troops that over ran the Foresters and Leicesters of 148 bde at Tretten.


    Plaque in Tretten.JPG

    PzAbt 40 Tretten.jpg

  11. Magnum

    Magnum Member

    Memorial to Sgt Dahlsrud.
    Text on the plaque:
    In memory of 23 april 1940 when Sergeant Amund A Dahlsrud born in 1894 was executed by German soldiers, this was a violation of international law.
    Öyer and Tretten Historical Society - 23 april 2005.
  12. Steve Foster

    Steve Foster Senior Member

    /Magnum has very kindly shown me a website which has some very accurate sketches of the fighting in and around Tretten on 23 April 1940. From the sketches I have posted some "then and now" photographes. The first shows retreating Sherwood Foresters passing the burning cheese factory in the centre of Tretten, next to that are photos of the cheese factory after it had burnt down and as it is today.

    The second is a sketch of a Sherwood Foresters machine gun position in a rock sangar under the Vardekampen Heights near the farmhouse at Rindheim. My photos show the Vardekampen heights from probably the same sangar and a view of the field of fire from the sangar down to Rindheim farmhouse where the German attack commenced through the track in the forest beyond the farmhouse. I think artistic license may have been used as to the best of my knowledge the only MGs the Territorials had was the Bren.


    Cheese Factory.jpg

    Cheese Factory 1940.jpg

    Cheese Factory 2010.JPG

    View attachment 93883

    Vardekampen Heights.JPG

    View attachment 93885
  13. Magnum

    Magnum Member

  14. Garmoran

    Garmoran Junior Member

    Here are some general pics of Brit troops in the Norway Campaign which I found floating round the net and have computer-enhanced as best as I was able bearing in mind many of the originals were not too good to begin with, and the original captions were often sketchy and lack detail about exact units and precise locations etc.

    Many thanks for posting these, Spike, especially the shots aboard Lancastria. I wish I could have shown them to my father: he was in Norway as part of no. 3 Independent Company and was evacuated aboard Lancastria. Sadly he died in 2010 but I still have an orange tin box which he was given aboard the liner and marked with its name and the date. I have no idea what the box contained.
  15. Steve Foster

    Steve Foster Senior Member

    I have put some then and now photographs of Tretten village street below:

    First: Tretten as it was in 1940 prior to the German invasion. Note the intact cheese factory.

    Second: A sketch of Tretten village as the three tanks which had already over run the forward positions at Rindheim enter the village and start taking on the defenders. Only one and half companies were left to defend the village as the remainder of 148 bde were at Rindheim under the Vardekampen hoping to stop the attack there. C Coy and half of HQ Coy, 8 Sherwood Foresters, the reserve force, engaged the tanks and ski troops within the village attempting to hold the tatical important road bridge. Hand to hand fighting took place until about 9 pm when the Brigadier asked for a volunteer rearguard to hold a line and the remnants of the Brigade retired North.

    Third: The very same street in may 2010.

    Fourth: The view the reserve force in Tretten would have had looking the other way down Tretten village street from the bridge to the Vardekampen heights. There, the main force was taking on the German attack on the other side of the Vardekampen heights. This is the peak in the centre of the skyline and German ski troops swept over the saddle to the left of the peak and into Tretten itself.


    Tretten 1940.jpg


    Tretten 2010 (2).JPG

    View from Tretten Bridge to Vardekampen.JPG
    stolpi likes this.
  16. ltdan

    ltdan Nietenzähler

    As questioned by Steve, I wrote a short account regarding German troops involved at Tretten. Any errors and mistakes included are entirely to blame on me.

    Corrections and additions to the above are appreciated
  17. Steve Foster

    Steve Foster Senior Member


    Thanks very much for posting your document giving a comprehensive overview of the German forces involved during the battles around Tretten. It is clear now that the understrength and lightly armed Territorials of 148 Brigade stood little chance against the well armed and organised "Group Pelengahr".


  18. clive7

    clive7 Member

    Hi Steve,

    my father, Pte Harold Gilbert (from Mansfield), was also wounded at Tretton in 1940, before being captured and taken to
    Oflag XX-B (renamed Oflag 64 in 1943) in Schoken, Poland. He was moved to different camps through the war,
    Stalag XX1-D Posen, Poland
    Fallingbostel, Germany
    21D Poland
    Lamsdorf, Germany
    Krems, Austria
    Silesia, Chec/Poland border.(Working camp)

    He escaped, and was re-captured at least once,
    Released from Silesia at the end of the war.

  19. Steve Foster

    Steve Foster Senior Member

    Hi Clive,

    It is a small world, your father was certainly moved around a lot by the Germans and unlike the rest of the Foresters captured at Tretten, did not go to Stalag XXA in Poland. The information I have about him is: Gilbert H, Private 322138, Held Stalag 344 Lamsdorf, POW no 96358.

    If you would like any other information about the battle at Tretten that I have not posted, please don't hesitate.

  20. clive7

    clive7 Member

    Hi Spike,

    I am new to this excellent site, joining yesterday.
    I posted in a reply to Steve Foster, as my father was wounded/captured at Tretton.
    When looking at the aforementioned picture, was amazed to see my father in the row
    nearest the camera, 3rd from the rear.
    He was in the 8th battalion Sherwood Foresters.

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