Help with 5th East Yorks casualty

Discussion in 'British Army Units - Others' started by Hapidaze, Jul 16, 2012.

  1. Hapidaze

    Hapidaze Junior Member

    Hi from Oz, I am trying to trace an uncle Serjeant Anthony Ernest ENGLISH of the 5th battalion East Yorkshire Regiment. He was killed on the beaches of Normandy on D Day. I realise I may be asking in the wrong area, but as this is my first try at collecting info, please accept my apologies. Where can I access his war record? Where would he have been based? Previous action? Where did his battalion leave from and which beach did he arrive at. All of these q's and more I know are requiring my time and effort to trace, but any start from you would be very much appreciated. Thanking you in advance...
  2. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    I'vre moved your post to it's own thread.
  3. Philip Reinders

    Philip Reinders Very Senior Member

    Welcome from the Netherands

    The war diary from the periode, will help you with some of above questions, this can be found in the National Archives in Kew, or maybe some one the forum, has a copy of it and can post the day he was killed.

    Also helpful would be a Regimental History of the Battalion
  4. Paul Reed

    Paul Reed Ubique MOD

  5. Philip Reinders

    Philip Reinders Very Senior Member

    They lost 10 officers and 85 men on the beaches

  6. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  7. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Welcome to the forum Hapidaze. Here is his CWGC casualty details courtessy of Geoff's search engine:

    Rank: Serjeant
    Service No: 5830358
    Date of Death: 06/06/1944
    Age: 25
    Regiment/Service: East Yorkshire Regiment, 5th Bn.
    Grave Reference: X. K. 10.

    His service number is from the Suffolk Regiment block of numbers, which suggests prior service with at least the Suffolk's: Suffolk Regiment 5819001 - 5875000.

    I'll revert shortly!


  8. Philip Reinders

    Philip Reinders Very Senior Member

  9. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Tony,

    I received your e-mail - thanks! To answer your immediate questions…

    The 5th Bn East Yorkshire Regiment, were in 69th Infantry Brigade, 50th (Northumbrian) Division; along with the 6th and 7th Bns Green Howards. They had served with 50 Div since circa 1 July 1940 in the UK, Cyprus, Iraq, Western Desert – Gazala, 2nd El Alamein, Mareth (Wadi Zigzaou) and Wadi Akarit – Sicily (assault division, second wave), D-Day (assault division, first wave) and NW Europe. The 50 Div had a long, hard, war.

    On 8 November 1943, the 5th Bn East Yorks arrived back in the UK from Sicily, where they entrained for and were billeted in Thetford, Norfolk. Here they undertook training for the NW Europe campaign.

    On 1 February 1944 the 5th Bn East Yorks moved to Lowestoft, Suffolk. I recall that various battalions in 50 Div did street fighting courses in this area during this period. It was around this time that 50 Div was told that there had been a change of plan and that it would now be the spearhead for the coming D-Day assault on Gold Beach.

    On the 28 February 1944 the 69th Infantry Brigade attended combined operations training at Inverary, Argyll, Scotland - essentially amphibious assault and sea-borne exercises.

    On 13 March 1944 they returned to billets in Bournemouth, Dorset, then on 6 April 1944 to Winchester, Hampshire. Large scale amphibious landing exercises then took place at Studland Bay, Dorset and from 17 April 1944, dry shod – navigating dummy minefields - exercises near Swanage, Dorset.

    From 1st to 4th May 1944 various rehearsals, including a full scale one, at embarking and disembarking LSI (Landing Ship Infantry) – G67 and 68 allocated - and LCI’s (Landing Craft Infantry) took place, starting out from The Hards at Southampton to Hayling Island, a few miles to the east of Southampton.

    On 16 May 1944 they moved to their assembly area at Romsey to the north of Southampton; this was sealed off with no communications with outside world on the 25 May 1944.

    On 30 May 1944 they were transported to their Marshalling Transit Area at Southampton.

    On 1 June 1944 they boarded the LSI’s – G67 and G68; HQ and the two follow-up Companies B and C on one, and the two assault companies A and D on the other. Each LSI carried 18 LCA’s.

    They eventually departed Southampton for Normandy at 20.30 hours on 5 June 1944, after a whole days delay due to bad weather.

    The LSI’s arrived 6 miles off the Normandy coast at 05.00 hours on 6 June and the LCAs were dropped into the rough sea - force 5 winds from the west (that is 16 to 20 knots) and 4 foot waves.

    The 5th Bn East Yorks were an assault battalion at the left of the eastern end of Gold beach, known as King Red, with the 6th Bn Green Howards to their right on King Green. Gold Beach was the most westerly of the Commonwealth beaches – Sword, Juno and Gold. The US beach Omaha was the closest of the US ones and further to the west.

    King Red spanned the area La Riviere (western part only) on the left and Ver-Sur-Mer on the right - slightly inland and with the Fleury Battery and Mont Fleury both standing between it and the coast.

    I recommend two books covering the 5th Bn East Yorks involvement:

    1) "The Story of The 5th Battalion The East Yorkshire Regiment TA" by L M Garwood (Highgate); and
    2) “The Sign Of The Double 'T'” - BS Barnes, Sentinel.

    The former is the battalion history and the latter, although it covers all of the 50th (Northumbrian) Division from July 1943 to December 1944 i.e. Sicily and NW Europe, it has lots of veteran quotes, etc. which helps to build the picture.

    In addition, a book I haven't yet bought that you may wish to purchase:

    A History of the East Yorkshire Regiment (Duke of York's Own) in the War of 1939-45 by P.R. Nightingale

    -which retails at over GBP £120 for a hardcover, second hand version. This will cover all of the East Yorks. Philip posted a couple of pages from it at Message #5.

    For his service records, Owen provided a link at Message #6 covering the who, what, how, of obtaining these. The link will guide you, but if you have any questions about the application just ask and a forum member will be along to assist you.

    If you need any further information from me just ask away!


  10. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Tony,

    Here also are the D-Day landing tables for the 69th Infantry Brigade - the 5th Bn East Yorks start at H+5.

    D-Day : Normandy 1944 - GOLD BEACH : British Troops

    NB. The references to 4/7 DG are DD Sherman tanks of 8th Armoured Brigade, together with the Engineer's AVRE's and Crabs (Hobarts funnies) and assault engineers on foot, are to units that went into the assault slightly before the infantry in order to clear mines and other obtacles i.e. make the assault troops path as clear of obstacles as possible.


  11. Ant

    Ant New Member

    Hiya I know this is a while since you posted, My Uncle Lt Thomas F Lowe MC was shot by MG later in the day on the 6th June, later dying. He is buried in the Cemetery at Bayeux. I'm going over there on the 16th Nov 2018 to visit his grave and the place he was shot. That was in woods just south of St Gabriel. I have your uncles grave reference I'll pay my respects.


  12. llantonian

    llantonian New Member

    I'm fortunate to have acquired the medal group to the (then) Acting Lt-Col Gilbert "Bill" White, CO of the 5th Bn. I'm not familiar with the landing tables and would like to know if it's possible to identify in which LSI he would have landed.


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