War Diary: 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS, Jan - Dec 1944

Discussion in 'The Brigade of Guards' started by dbf, Sep 28, 2011.

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    WO 171/1252
    If only all War Diaries were like this one ... or maybe not. Once it reaches the nitty-gritty of Normandy the appendices positively explode with information, the odd sketch map thrown in: drawn upon the usual SITREP format but expanded into a Battalion news sheet, "Over to You" deals with official communications as well as the mundane of army life.

    I will attempt to transcribe it all (though after a while I might give up and attach them instead) ... from *daily casualty lists to quotations from history tomes, from length of time it takes for letter to get home to lost property. It's all in there!

    If anyone is interested in a particular date which I have not yet reached in this thread, please send me a PM and I will do my best.

    * Lists include whether KIA, wounded, evacuated, missing and also gives Regtl Nos. as well as with which Company the man was serving. Sometimes lists give circumstances / type of injury. Reinforcements / those who Returned To Unit might also be listed.
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    1944 January 6
    On the 6th the Battalion moved out of its billets at SCAMPSTON and changed over with the 1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS in SCARBOROUGH.
    During the first ten days of the month there has been a Tactical Course for Subaltern Officers, and Companies have been training in the use of Mines, Explosives, and Weapon Training.

    1944 January 11
    Loading trials were carried out, in order to get the details of personnel and equipment carried on each vehicle for future use in conjunction with landing tables, and the final arrangement and loads of Platoon trucks etc.

    1944 January 12
    A Platoon from No. 2 Company is being trained in Provost traffic control duties; a weeks course starts to-day.

    1944 January 13
    Cloth Model Exercise on the drill to be employed in moving the Battalion into an F.U.P. prior to a night attack.

    1944 January 14
    All Ranks attended a M.I.9 lectured on ‘What to do if captured.”

    1944 January 17
    In the morning a Cloth Model Exercise to explain the correct method of controlling and moving the Battalion transport through a gap in a minefield.
    In the afternoon Exercise GET SET a Battalion Exercise to put into practise the drill of moving the Battalion into an F.U.P. for a night attack.

    1944 January 18
    An Officer and a Sergeant from the Governor General’s Regiment of Foot Guards had been staying with the Battalion.
    In the evening there was a short lecture and discussion for All Ranks on ‘Conditions in Canada’.

    1944 January 19
    The Battalion left billets at 0600 hours on Exercise BRECK.
    Each Battalion in the Brigade is spending three days at DIDLINGTON in NORFOLK to do field firing on the STAMFORD battle area, with a Battery of the 55 Field Regiment and the Brigade Support Group.
    The first day of the Battalion column covered 120 miles and spent the night at CRANWELL Aerodrome near NEWARK.

    1944 January 20
    The Battalion finished the remaining 65 miles of the journey and arrived at DIDLINGTON Camp at 1600 hours

    1944 January 21
    Didlington, Norfolk
    Rifle Companies each doing a Company Exercise to practise the use of defensive fire tasks and the fire power of the Company in defence supported by a Battery of Field Artillery, a Platoon of 4.2” mortars, and a Platoon of M.M.G.s

    1944 January 22
    A Battalion Exercise to practise the Battalion in the attack supported by the Battery 55 Field Regiment and the Brigade Support Group.

    1944 January 23
    The Battalion left DIDLINGTON and arrived back at SCARBOROUGH at 0300 hours the next day, a total journey of 185 miles.

    1944 January 26
    Cloth Model Exercise to bring out the problems of Consolidation.

    1944 January 27
    Brigadier’s Inspection of billets.

    1944 January 28
    In the morning the Battalion paraded at BURNISTON Barracks and was inspected by the Brigadier, in the afternoon he then inspected the Battalion transport.

    1944 January 31
    Exercise LAST LAP
    A Battalion Exercise to put into practise the points discussed on the Consolidation Cloth Model Exercise.
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    1944 February 3 - 4
    Exercise SNOW
    A Divisional Exercise to practise:-
    1. Move into a Concentration Area by dark.
    2. Advance of the Armoured Brigade to first contact.
    3. Passing the Infantry Brigade through the Armoured Brigade.
    4. Attack and Consolidation by the Infantry Brigade.

    1944 February 7
    Battalion Field Firing Exercise on WHEELDALE MOOR.
    The Battalion debussed and moved into the F.U.P. at 1000 hours, then an attack was put in with two Companies leading, on the capture of the first objective the follow up and reserve Companies were passed through to capture the final objective.
    The attacks were supported by a Battery Field Artillery, and switches on the different fire tasks were practised during the attack, controlled by one of the leading Company Commanders with an F.O.O.
    A Platoon of M.M.G.s also supported the attack.
    After this the Battalion watched a demonstration ‘Air Burst’ shoot, and practised digging slit trenches with the aid of explosives.

    1944 February 9
    The Battalion went to GREAT DRIFFIELD where the assembled Division was addressed by General Sir Bernard MONTGOMERY.

    1944 February 13
    Exercise EAGLE
    The Column moved off at 1000 hours and arrived in the Concentration Area at LAYTHAM 2259, at 1600 hours.

    1944 February 14
    During the morning a large part of the Battalion were inoculated against Typhus.
    2300 hours
    The Commanding Officer gave out orders for the advance next morning.
    The opening situation is that formations of 21st ARMY GROUP having broken out from a bridgehead formed in the South of ENGLAND, have for the past week been pursuing a retreating enemy Northwards.
    Some resistance was encountered on the line of the R. OUSE, but this was successfully dealt with and the two Armoured Divisions of 8 CORPS have crossed over.
    At 1600 hours to-day, our recce formations reported enemy opposition along the line of the road GREAT DRIFFIELD 4976 to POCKLINGTON 2768.
    Tomorrow the Division is going to advance up onto the WOLDS to make contact with the enemies main defences, the Armoured Brigade is leading.
    The Battalion is following the Armoured Brigade on the Left Centre Line which runs North via HUGGATE 3574 & FRIDAY THORPE 3478.

    1944 February 15
    1000 hours
    The Battalion moved off from LAYTHAM.
    1030 hours
    Enemy posts along the DRIFFIELD - POCKLINGTON road reported to have withdrawn, armoured Battalion’s now in action against advanced positions along the line WETWANG 4078 - FRIDAYTHORPE 3478.
    1600 hours
    Armour now in contact with strong enemy positions along the line of the road FIMBER Stn 3880 - FIMBER 3680.
    1700 hours
    The Commanding Officer went forward and recce’d the position held by the 2nd Armoured Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS who were held to the South of road junction 3781 by a strong enemy position in TOWTHORPE 3782, at the same time the Battalion debussed at FRIDAYTHORPE and moved up with the A Echelon to an Assembly Area at 3579.
    The Armoured Battalion was relieved just before dark, and the Battalion dug in during the night without interference.

    1944 February 16
    Patrols during the night reported FIMBER LING Fm 3681 and BURDALE HEIGH BARN 3582 unoccupied, but TOWTHORPE to be strongly held and wired in and the whole position protected by a minefield running parallel with the road. See Map
    1400 hours
    Some enemy came int FIMBER LING Fm and drove out our gunner Observation Post.
    FIMBER LING Fm is the one place that overlooks our reverse slope position and it is therefore of considerable importance.
    No. 1 Company put in a counter-attack and captured it without loss.
    They then left a Standing Patrol and withdrew.

    1944 February 17
    During the night patrols went out to Fm at 3683, WOLD 3584 and CANAD 3784, also three fighting Patrols went out with ROYAL ENGINEERS parties that are recce’ing the minefield.
    From information brought back and P.W. we now know that the enemy hold TOWTHORPE with their 1st Battalion and the Fm at 3683 with their 3rd Battalion.
    The whereabouts of their 2nd Battalion which is in reserve is a little uncertain as yet.

    1944 February 18
    Last night’s patrols penetrated between the two enemy Battalions and around their night flank.
    They brought back information about a large and strongly held locality at KIRBY GRANGE 3784, and further minefields have been located to the East and North East of TOWTHORPE.
    Fighting patrols were again out with the ROYAL ENGINEERS minefield recce.
    Throughout the day enemy artillery has been active shelling the area of Battalion H.Q.

    1944 February 19
    Patrols brought back further information about the enemy minefield which is now found to be continuous along the whole front.
    All attempts to get through met with casualties, and some of the areas appear to have been recently added to.
    1300 hours
    An enemy loudspeaker has been broadcasting propaganda to us.
    Day patrols by the Carrier Platoons have had clashes with the enemy out on our Left flank near BURDALE 3482 and in the are to the North, however these posts appear to be occupied by day only.

    1944 February 20
    During the night ROYAL ENGINEERS protected by fighting patrols made two gaps in the minefield opposite us.
    1200 hours
    The Commanding Officer gave out orders for a feint attack to be made before first light tomorrow as a part of the cover plan for the main breakthrough which is being made on our Right by 15 S Division at first light.
    1700 hours
    A Carrier patrol at BELLA Ho 3484 has brought back a most valuable map captured off an enemy Officer; it gives the complete enemy layout and order of battle.

    1944 February 21
    0500 hours
    At zero a Platoon from No. 1 Company and a Platoon from No. 4 Company passed through the minefield gaps and raided TOWTHORPE from the East and West.
    At the same time Platoons from No.s. 2 and 3 Companies advanced across the road to the edge of the minefield wire and opened up fire on THOWTHORPE.
    The operation was covered by heavy Artillery fire.
    0600 hours
    All troops have been successfully withdrawn from the raid on TOWTHORPE with only slight casualties.
    1900 hours
    An enemy attack, estimated to have been the whole of their 3rd Battalion captured FINBER LING Fm from the West.
    Darkness fell before the operation was complete, and the enemy began to dig in opposite No. 1 Company, but after heavy concentrations had been put down on them they finally withdrew.

    1944 February 22
    During the night, patrols reported that the enemy had completely withdrawn from FIMBER LING Fm, and the front appeared to be occupied as before though there was a certain amount of transport activity.
    0800 hours
    A further attack was put in from the direction of FIMBER LING Fm, also another enemy Battalion attacked South across the road in front of TOWTHORPE.
    Both attacks suffered very heavy casualties but the enemy managed to work round on to our flanks, and had virtually wiped out the whole of No.s 2 and 3 Companies.
    Continual attacks were launched on as till by about 1200 hours by which time only two small strong points consisting of the remnants of No.s 1 and 4 Companies remained.
    The Battalion was then put out of the Battle till 1000 hours the next morning.

    1944 February 23
    The progress of 15 Division’s attack is now complete.
    The enemy’s WOLD position has been broken through and mopped up and the Armoured Brigade together with the armour of the 11th Division are advancing North to deal with an enemy armoured Division on the edge of the WOLDS near SHERBOURNE WOLD 4394.
    1200 hours
    The Commanding Officer gave out orders for our next advance.
    We are to follow up the armoured advance, via SLEDMERE 4084, and WEST LUTTON 4088, where it is expected the next position will be.
    1400 hours
    Battalion moved off.
    1700 hours
    Battalion reached WEST LUTTON.
    The enemy armour has been driven from the WOLDS, and the Battalion has been ordered to advance and occupy a position around SCAMPSTON road junction at 3594.
    Owing to traffic blocks and craters due to enemy shelling it is not possible to move the transport up, and the Battalion marched on foot to the new position.
    2400 hours
    The 1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS have forced a crossing over the river at YEDDINGHAM 3799.

    1944 February 24
    0900 hours
    Battalion ordered to cross the river and reinforce the bridgehead held by the 1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS and 3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS.
    The bridgehead is being counter-attacked but there is a bridge across it and it is hoped that the attack guns will be able to cross as enemy tanks are operating on the further bank.
    1200 hours
    The bridge has been blown up, and zero for the Battalion attack is now postponed.
    Finally an attack was put in over the repaired bridge, and the Battalion occupied a position on the far side around YEDDINGHAM ABBEY 3799 and RAINES Fm 3600.
    1500 hours
    Exercise ended.

    The ten days after the Exercise have been made a rest period with parades, lectures and films in the morning, and sports in the afternoon.

    Attached Files:

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    This month there have been no Brigade or Battalion Exercises, and the training has been mostly Company activities.
    The main items being:-
    Street Fighting in the bombed areas at HULL
    Firing on the classification range at STRENSALL
    Firing PIAT
    Instruction in the handling of mines by Lieutenant M. PHILLIPS back from the 2nd Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS, and
    Vehicle handling and waterproofing

    1944 March 3
    Lecture to the Battalion on ‘INDIA’ by Mr. DAVIS WATKINS.

    1944 March 6
    The film ‘Next of Kin’ shown to the Battalion.

    1944 March 8
    The Battalion was visited by the Major-General who watched Street Fighting Demonstration.

    1944 March 22
    Castle Howard
    His Majesty the KING paid a visit to the Division which was drawn up along the sides of the avenue at CASTLE HOWARD.
    The Battalion lined the top end of the route by the Guest House.
    The KING also went to KIRKHAM and watched a demonstration of climbing on scrambling nets by No. 3 Company.

    1944 March 23
    The Commanding Officer and a large contingent from the Battalion left for LONDON, where they will take part in the ‘Salute the Soldier’ week. Details of the visit will be given next month

    1944 March 24
    A party of 50 from the Battalion paid a visit to an important war factory at TEESDALE.

    1944 March 28
    Lecture to Officers and N.C.O.s on the handling of Prisoners of War.

    1944 March 31
    T.E.W.T. for Officers to study the composition communications and organisation for movement of ‘R’ and ‘O’ Groups, down to Platoon ‘O’ Groups.
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    1944 April 3
    Scarborough, Yorkshire
    Pioneer Platoon leave for PIRBRIGHT where they are going to do ten days special training with the Pioneer Platoon of the TRAINING BATTALION.
    First day of Tactical Course for Officers who have recently joined the Battalion.

    1944 April 5
    The Battalion was visited by the Regimental Lieutenant-Colonel.

    1944 April 6
    The new cap G.S. was taken into use by the Battalion

    1944 April 8
    Instructions received to introduce Censorship of all correspondence forthwith.

    1944 April 10
    Exercise MOWTHORPE.
    A Battalion Exercise to practise a new procedure in debussing and moving up to the Assembly Area; the Battalion in the attack; coordination of Anti-Tank weapons on consolidation; replenishment of ammunition.
    The Battalion had under command a Battery of 17-pounders, a troop of S.P. Anti-Tank guns and a Platoon of M.M.Gs
    Field Artillery was represented by two F.O.O.s
    The Exercise was carried out in the HIGH MOWTHORPE area 3688.

    1944 April 11
    Officers and N.C.O.s attended a lecture by Major GRIFFITHS JONES on ‘Living in the Front Line’.

    1944 April 12
    Exercise EGG.
    A Brigade Exercise to practise the new debussing procedure on a Brigade level; the rapid occupation of a Pivot position; the coordination of Anti-Tank defences; and the allotment of Artillery tasks.
    The Exercise started at 0900 hours with the Battalion advancing North East from WARTER 3469.
    The first pivot position at GARTON FIELD Ho 4380 was occupied 1230 hours, and at 1600 hours the Brigade again advanced and a final pivot position was occupied in the area of DANEBURY MANOR 5296 by 1930 hours.

    1944 April 13
    The Battalion received orders to adopt a closed postal address from 2400 hours onward

    1944 April 14
    Company Commanders attended a lecture on ‘Snipers’ by the Chief Instructor Snipers Wing LLANBERIS.
    The Battalion Snipers have been picked and are being trained by the Second-in-Command.

    1944 April 17
    Officers and N.C.O.s attended a demonstration on ‘Minefield gapping’ at SCAMPSTON given by the ROYAL ENGINEERS.
    A dummy minefield with booby traps etc has been laid out there and is allotted to the Battalion next week.
    Procedure for recce’ing and gapping a minefield will be practised by the Pioneer Platoon and instruction given to Companies.
    Exercise MOONSTONE
    A Battalion Exercise to practise the Battalion in forming up for a night attack, the night attack, gapping a minefield, and the procedure for passing the Battalion transport through the gap during darkness.
    The Battalion Assembly Area was in a reentrant at 456914, from here they moved into an F.U.P. to the North West of GARA Fm 4491, and at 2230 hours the attack was launched at MOOR Fm 4292.
    The leading Company reached their objective at 2315 hours but a Carrier and a jeep accompanying the attack were blown up on a minefield in front of the Fm.
    Gapping was started at about 2400 hours and by 0400 hours the gap was completed and signposted ready for the first vehicles.
    By 0530 hours all the transport had reached the Battalion area, and necessary stores were off-loaded and the vehicles except for F Echelon returned to the vehicle park before daylight.
    After readjusting the position to daylight needs, the Exercise closed.

    1944 April 23
    The Battalion went to YORK to attend a St. GEORGE’S DAY parade service held in the Minster in conjunction with the 1st and 4th Battalions COLDSTREAM GUARDS.
    The three Battalions were commanded by the Regimental Lieutenant-Colonel.
    The Mayor of YORK took the salute at the March Past.

    1944 April 25
    The Advance party left for the new area.

    1944 April 28
    Scarborough, Yorkshire
    Exercise OPTION
    The Battalion left SCARBOROUGH for its Concentration Area at EASTBOURNE at 1000 hours, arrived at DONCASTER Staging Camp at 1600 hours and spent the night there.

    1944 April 29
    Battalion left the Staging Camp at 0600 hours and went down the Great North Road to a bivouac area near STEVENAGE.

    1944 April 30
    Moved off from bivouac area at 0700 hours and was met by the Metropolitan Police at SOUTH MIMMS; here the column split up into small groups and was taken across LONDON under police arrangements.
    The Battalion reformed outside PURLEY and went on to EASTBOURNE arriving at 1600 hours.
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    5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS - April 1944

    Lieutenant-Colonel The Lord STRATHEDEN - Commanding Officer
    Major W.S. Stewart Brown, D.S.O. - Second-in-Command
    Captain C.W. LAMBTON - Adjutant
    Lieutenant J. PEREIRA - Intelligence Officer
    Captain (QM) S.B.R. COOPER - Quartermaster
    Captain The Reverend R.H. TOMLINSON, R.A.Ch.D. - Padre
    Captain P.J.R. DELLER, R.A.M.C. - Medical Officer

    Captain C.H. FEILDEN - Company Commander
    Captain I.O. LIDDELL - Motor Transport Officer
    Lieutenant R.G. STYLE - Signal Officer
    Lieutenant Earl of PLYMOUTH - Assistant Signal Platoon Officer (on No. 3 Company Strength)
    Lieutenant E. STRAGHAN - Attached Divisional H.Q. Squadron (on No. 4 Company Strength)
    Company Sergeant-Major R. SKELLS
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant T. THORNTON
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant F. FARNHILL

    Major B.E. LUARD, M.C. - Company Commander
    Captain P.L. FANNING - Carrier Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant R.G. LOMER - Carrier Platoon Officer
    Captain G.B. MacKEAN - Anti-Tank Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant B. BLOWER - Anti-Tank Platoon Officer
    Lieutenant J.T. PAGET - Mortar Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant R. THOMPSON - Pioneer Platoon Officer
    Company Sergeant-Major D. HAMNETT
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant G. TILLING
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant J. CONNOLLY

    No. 1 COMPANY
    Major K.M. THORNTON - Company Commander
    Captain Marquess of HARTINGTON
    Lieutenant H. WHITWELL
    Lieutenant R.F.C. PARRINGTON
    Lieutenant C.D. LAWRIE
    Lieutenant F.D.W. BROWN
    Lieutenant H.R. GRAHAM-VIVIAN
    Company Sergeant-Major H. HARRISON
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant H. STEVENS

    No. 2 COMPANY
    Captain J.d’H. HAMILTON - Company Commander
    Captain The Honourable D.M.G.J. WILLOUGHBY
    Lieutenant J.N.M. COLES
    Lieutenant G.B. FALLER
    Lieutenant O. WRIGHTSON
    2/Lieutenant K.G.F. KENDALL
    2/Lieutenant C.N. ACHESON-GRAY
    Company Sergeant-Major G. WHYTE
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant B. AYRES

    No. 3 COMPANY
    Major M.E. ADEANE - Company Commander
    Captain A. GIBBS
    Lieutenant The Lord BALGONE
    Lieutenant The Honourable J.U. KNATCHBULL
    2/Lieutenant A.B. WHITEHORN
    2/Lieutenant T.A. MITCHELL
    Company Sergeant-Major J. COWLEY
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant R. FOWLER

    No. 4 COMPANY
    Major M.P.G. HOWARD - Company Commander
    Captain D.I.T. EASTMAN
    Lieutenant H.C.H. BOWSER
    2/Lieutenant M.W. WALL
    2/Lieutenant R.C. TREASURE
    2/Lieutenant G.W. MYRRDIN-EVANS
    Company Sergeant-Major N. REID
    Company Quartermaster Sergeant F. MARSDEN
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    1944 May 1
    The Battalion billets in EASTBOURNE are as follows:-

    The Battalion has an operation role, protecting V.P.s at :- Copy Operational Role No. 8
    BEACHY HEAD 023144 (RAF)
    FRISTON 9616 (RAF)
    WARTING 091624 (RAF)
    PEVENSEY 083258
    V.P. at 012179
    DEANLAND 9630

    Owing to waterproofing it will not be possible to have any Exercises except on a Company scale.
    Rifle Companies are to do two marches per week, going out in pairs, bivouacing for the night and returning the next day.
    The local swimming baths have been booked, so that all Companies will have its use several times and be able to reduce the number of non-swimmers.
    A limited allotment of the local field firing ranges (Celtic fields 0121 and Chalk Fm 0322) has been obtained for Company field firing Exercises.

    1944 May 15
    Lecture by the Corps Commander to all Officers in the Garrison Theatre.

    1944 May 16
    Orders received to start Concentration.

    1944 May ?17
    Lecture by Liaison Officer from Q movements to all Officers and Sergeants, on procedure of movement through Marshalling Areas to Embarkation.
    T.E.W.T. for all Company Commanders and Second-in-Commands on occupation of a pivot position.

    1944 May 18
    Battalion Loading trials

    1944 May 23
    Lecture by Brigade Intelligence Officer to remainder of Battalion who had not had previous instruction: on Evasion and Escaping.
    Period of intense wireless activity till the 28th; rear link to Brigade manned daily.

    1944 May 25
    A party of Officers, Sergeants and Other Ranks attended a parade with other troops from the Division and were addressed by General EISENHOWER.

    1944 May 26
    Battalion wireless Exercise.

    1944 May 28
    All waterproofing completed.
    Battalion reported measures for concentration all taken.
    The Battalion is now at 6 hours notice.

    1944 May 29
    The Commanding Officer addressed the Companies, giving them a resume of points from General MONTGOMERY’s lecture, to be brought to the notice of All Ranks.
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    20TH JUNE, 1944 (NORMANDY LANDING) from A Distant Drum, Pereira

    Lieutenant-Colonel The Lord Stratheden - Commanding Officer
    Major W.S. Stewart Brown, D.S.O. - Second-in-Command
    Captain C.W. Lambton - Adjutant
    Captain I.O. Liddell - Mechanical Transport Officer
    Captain (Quartermaster) S.B.R. Cooper - Quartermaster
    Regimental Sergeant-Major S. Lonsbrough -
    Regimental Quartermaster-Sergeant E. Lovejoy - R.Q.M.S.
    Drill Sergeant S. Reason
    Drill Sergeant W. Stanley
    Captain P.J. Dellerm, R.A.M.C. - Medical Officer
    Capt. Reverend R. Tomlinson, R.A.Ch.D. - Padre

    Major C.H. Feilden - Company Commander
    Captain R.G. Style - Signal Platoon Officer
    Captain J. Pereira - Intelligence Officer
    Lieutenant R. Thompson - Pioneer Platoon Officer
    Company Sergeant-Major T. Griffiths - C.S.M.
    Company Quartermaster-Sergeant F. Farnhill - C.Q.M.S.

    Major B.E. Luard - Company Commander
    Captain P.L. Fanning - Carrier Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant R.G. Lomer - Carrier Platoon Officer
    Captain J.T. Paget - Mortar Platoon Commander
    Captain G.B. Mackean - Anti-Tank Platoon Commander
    Captain B. Blower - Anti-Tank Platoon Officer
    Company Sergeant-Major D. Hamnett - C.S.M.
    Company Quartermaster-Sergeant G. Tilling - C.Q.M.S.

    No. 1 COMPANY
    Major K. Thornton - Company Commander
    Captain F. Brown - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant H. Graham-Vivian - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant R.F.C. Parrington - Platoon Commander
    2nd Lieutenant C.D. Lawrie - Platoon Commander
    Company Sergeant-Major - C.S.M. G. Harrison
    Company Quartermaster- Sergeant - C.Q.M.S. H. Stevens

    No. 2 COMPANY
    Major J. d'H. Hamilton - Company Commander
    Captain Hon. D.M.G.J. Willoughby - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant K. Kendall - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant G. Faller - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant N. Coles - Platoon Commander
    Company Sergeant-Major G. Whyte - C.S.M.
    Company Quartermster-Sergeant B. Ayres - C.Q.M.S.

    No. 3 COMPANY
    Major M.E. Adean - Company Commander
    Captain A. Gibbs - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant Hon. J. Knatchbull - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant Lord Balgonie - Platoon Commander
    Company Sergeant-Major J. Cowley - C.S.M.
    Company Quartermaster-Sergeant R. Fowler - C.Q.M.S.

    No. 4 COMPANY
    Major M.P.G. Howard - Company Commander
    Captain D.I.T. Eastman - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant C.H.Bowser - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant M.W. Wall - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant G. Myrddin-Evans - Platoon Commander
    Company Sergeant-Major N. Reid - C.S.M.
    Company Quartermaster-Sergeant F. Marsden - C.Q.M.S.
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    1944 June 1 Battalion Sports Day.
    Highest total score won by No. 4 Company.

    1944 June 2
    Lecture to All Ranks of ‘Marching’ and ‘Vehicle’ parties on the procedure and sequence of events during the Battalion move to the Marshalling area, and Embarkation.

    1944 June 5
    Battalion Wireless Exercise.

    1944 June 6
    D - DAY

    1944 June 7
    The Battalion was addressed by the G.O.C.

    1944 June 8
    Lecture by the Commanding Officer to all Officers on cooperation with tanks.
    2,500 Operational Maps for OVERLORD received.

    1944 June 9
    Adjutant’s Parade.

    1944 June 12
    1200 hours
    Order received for all vehicles to be fully loaded by tomorrow evening.
    All Ranks received an advance of pay in French money at the pay table.

    1944 June 13
    Previous move order put back by 48 hours.
    Letter received from the Colonel of the Regiment, wishing the Battalion Good Luck in the forthcoming operation.

    1944 June 14
    Adjutant’s Parade.
    2330 hours
    Orders received for Adjutant to report to Quartermaster to collect instructions for move on 16th.

    1944 June 16
    0300 hours
    Battalion ‘Marching Party’ of 17 Officers and 472 Other Ranks under command of Major W.S. STEWART BROWN, D.S.O. entrained at EASTBOURNE Station and left for their Marshalling Area.
    0400 hours
    Battalion ‘Vehicle Party’ formed up and left for Marshalling Area “T” at WANSTEAD: travelling via HAILSHAM, FOREST ROW, STREATHAM, BLACKFRIARS BRIDGE, WANSTEAD, EPPING FOREST.
    During the journey a “flying bomb” landed quite close to the column but did no damage.
    1130 hours
    On arrival at the Marshalling Area, last stages of Waterproofing were carried out, and All Ranks issued with two 24 hours pack rations, 1 emergency ration, tommy cooker and hexamine fuel, packet of biscuits, 20 cigarettes, and 3 vomit bags.

    1944 June 17
    0630 hours
    Commanding Officer gave out orders:-
    From 2359 hours the Battalion is at 30 minutes notice to move.
    The Battalion with a few non-unit troops is going in M.T.S. No. S111, the “EMPIRE GLADSTONE”.
    During the night flying bombs were dropped in the LONDON Area.
    2300 hours
    Commanding Officer gave out order for tomorrow’s move down to the docks.

    1944 June 18
    0400 hours
    Party consisting of all 15cwts and jeeps with men to help in loading left for the docks.
    0850 hours
    Carriers, Carden Loyds, T.C.L.s and the remainder of the transport moved off for the docks.
    1640 hours
    Drivers mates and other men from the vehicles taken down to the docks by L.P.T.B. buses.
    At the docks the roll was called and the vehicle party of 18 Officers and 311 Other Ranks embarked.
    The holds of the ship are filled with the Battalion’s 100 vehicles and the 20 R.A.S.C. T.C.L.s
    The men are accommodated in two compartments between decks, and the decks themselves are available for purposes of feeding, exercise and recreation.
    1900 hours
    M.T.S. S111 was towed from VICTORIA DOCK and sailed for a Rendezvous off SOUTHEND.

    1944 June 19
    On the Ship Off SOUTHEND.
    0800 hours
    P.T. for All Ranks on the deck.
    2000 hours
    Sing song.

    1944 June 20
    0800 hours P.T.
    1200 hours
    Sailing postponed, strong wind blowing in the CHANNEL and sea rough.

    1944 June 21
    0800 hours
    1030 hours
    Practice taking up emergency positions, in case of ship sinking etc.
    1400 hours
    Commanding Officer went ashore to naval briefing Conference.
    Convoy due to sail at 1900 hours tomorrow.

    1944 June 22
    0800 hours
    1600 hours
    Sailing time cancelled.
    2000 hours
    Sing song.

    1944 June 23
    0800 hours
    1030 hours
    Drivers and off-loading party given final instructions on procedure at beaches and on arrival.
    2000 hours
    Convoy set sail.

    1944 June 24
    Passed through the STRAITS of DOVER without incident at about 0100 hours.
    2200 hours
    Weighed anchor about five miles out from “GOLD BEACH” at LEHAMEL 875803.
    Orders received to be ready to off-load at first light tomorrow.

    1944 June 25
    0800 hours
    Detachment from PIONEER CORPS arrived on board to off-load vehicles.
    Two U.S. L.C.T.s also came alongside.
    1020 hours
    First load of vehicles in an L.C.T. touched down on GOLD BEACH.
    There was about 3’ of water to be waded but all vehicles stood up to the test.
    1045 hours
    First vehicles left the Transit Area and went via RYES 8483 - and BAYEUX 7879 to the Battalion Concentration Area which surrounds a small farm at 768773.
    Owing to the route being closed after 1045 hours the remainder of the transport was delayed and did not arrive until the evening.
    2300 hours
    There are still a few vehicles to come but the ship has been completely off-loaded and these vehicles are being held in the Transit Area.

    1944 June 26
    Also see News Sheet
    1100 hours
    The Battalion is now complete in the Concentration Area.
    The Division has been transferred from 8 CORPS and is now in 12 CORPS.
    1200 hours
    Commanding Officer held a Conference for all Company Commanders.
    1900 hours
    Commanding Officer went to Brigade H.Q.

    1944 June 27
    Also see News Sheet
    1130 hours
    The Battalion is now at 3 hours notice to move as from 1200 hours.

    1944 June 28
    Also see News Sheet
    0900 hours
    Commanding Officer went to Brigade ‘O’ Group.
    General situation - a large scale attack is being launched on the 8 CORPS’ front South East across the River ODON.
    The Brigade is to come under command of 8 CORPS again and take up a defensive position on the Left flank of 8 CORPS with:-
    5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS at ST. MANVIEU 9368
    3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS at LE GAULE 9267.
    Opposite this sector 12 S.S. Division is strongly entrenched in CARPIQUET Aerodrome 9668.
    1100 hours
    Commanding Officer and ‘O’ Group arrived at the Battalion H.Q. of the 4th Battalion WILTSHIRE REGIMENT (43 DIVISION) who are at present holding this position and from whom the Battalion is to take over. War Diaries - The Wardrobe
    1300 hours
    A Company of the WILTSHIRE REGIMENT report that MARCHELET 9468 is clear of enemy.
    1320 hours
    Battalion column left the Concentration Area.
    1630 hours
    Leading Company (No. 4) arrived at Battalion D.P. at 927697.
    Here the Companies debussed and the transport went to a park at SECQUEVILLE EMBASSIN 9274.
    Companies take into the position with them only their Jeep, Carrier, 1x15cwt, and the Support Company weapons.
    The Battalion is disposed as follows:- See also Appendix 1
    No. 1 COMPANY - WOOD and South end of VILLAGE at 933686, with a Section of Carriers and a Section Anti-Tank guns under command.
    No. 2 COMPANY (less 1 Platoon) - North end of VILLAGE 933690.
    No. 3 COMPANY - East end of WOOD 936882 with a Section of Carriers and a Section Anti-Tank guns under command.
    No. 4 COMPANY - In MARCHELET 9468 with under command a Platoon of No. 2 COMPANY, Section of Carriers, Section of Anti-Tank guns and Section of Mortars.
    This Company has a strong point forward of MARCELET and on the outskirts of the AERODROME at 952683 held by the Platoon of No. 2 COMPANY and a group at 933690 and 942685.
    Battalion H.Q. and Support Company H.Q. are in an orchard at 933688 with the Mortar Platoon (less 1 Section) and a Section of Carriers.
    94th Field Artillery from 43rd Division provide Artillery support with D.F. Tasks as in Appendix 2.
    2 Troops of 17-pounders area disposed 5 with No. 2 Company and 3 with No. 4 Company.
    Platoon of M.M.G.s from the Brigade Support Group are in position at 927693 so as to fire across the Battalion’s Left flank in a North East direction.
    1730 hours
    Battalion reported in position.
    1830 hours
    Stick of bombs straddled the Battalion area. No damage done.
    1845 hours
    No. 2 Company rounded up a Sniper in their area. He belongs to 1 Bn. P.G.R. Regiment who formerly held this area.
    1900 hours
    Carrier Platoon sent on to CARPIQUET Aerodrome report snipers in the WOOD at 953675 and they were fired on from a pillbox at 964886.
    The Battalion position was shelled and mortared at intervals during the day and there have been some casualties:- 4 Killed and 14 Wounded.
    2100 hours
    Commanding Officer to Co-ordinating Conference at Brigade H.Q.
    003 Link BRAZIER L 2663250 5TH BN 28 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 6.
    007 Link HACKING JA 3854048 5TH BN 28 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 7.
    008 Link MAHER J 2664041 5TH BN 28 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 1.
    009 Link SMITH L 2653958 5TH BN 28 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 12.

    1944 June 29
    Also see News Sheet
    0200 hours
    1 Prisoner of War captured by No. 4 Company identified as from the Flak Bn of 12 S.S. Division. He appeared to have lost his way and driven into the Company by mistake.
    0400 hours
    Intelligence Officer to Brigade H.Q. to collect D.F. tasks.
    St. MAUVIEU has been the scene of very heavy fighting so that few houses are intact and there is a great deal of debris and destruction about.
    It has also been necessary to bury a great number of dead Germans and animals that hardly improve the amenities.
    A large quantity of German equipment has been salvaged and put to the Battalion’s use, in particular a VOLKSWAGEN for the Padre, 2 M.C.s [?], several field telephones, camouflage suits for the snipers, medical supplies, and quantities of German documents.
    During the night No. 4 Company was shelled frequently but the troops are well dug in and there were no casualties.
    0900 hours
    Commanding Officer went round the Company positions.
    1030 hours
    Canadian Brigadier, C.R.A., and G1 to Battalion H.Q. to make a recce of the ground for the proposed attack that the Canadian Division is to make on CARPIQUET Aerodrome on Saturday.
    During the recce this party in the Commanding Officer’s scout car had an encounter with a German Staff car which was successfully shot up by the Commanding Officer’s escort.
    It contained 1 Officer and 1 Other Rank from 12 S.S. Division Signals Battalion who was carrying valuable codes and signal diagrams.
    1300 hours
    A Battery of 55 Field Regiment has arrived to take over from the Battery of 94 Field Regiment.
    1400 hours
    Commanding Officer held an ‘O’ Group to explain the details of the impending Canadian attack, and brief patrols.
    Canadian attack Start Line is a track running North East from MARCELET at 943687 and the advance is on the axis of the track running South East from 945694.
    Owing to heavy Artillery preparations it will be necessary to evacuate MARCELET before the attack.
    Patrols: No. 1 Company is finding a Recce Patrol led by Lieutenant PARKINGTON and No. 3 Company a Recce patrol led by Lieutenant KNATCHBULL. For details see appendix 3
    The patrols go out at 2300 hours tonight.
    1600 hours
    Battalion visited by G.O.C.
    1700 hours
    Brigade Commander to Battalion H.Q.
    1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS have moved out of their present area and taken up a position in CHEUX 9157.
    1800 hours
    News received 2 S.S. Pz Division is counter-attacking North East in the are of GRANVILLE SURODON 9164.
    2000 hours
    British Typhoons seen attacking CARPIQUET Aerodrome.
    2140 hours
    'O’ Group called to give out orders for counter-attack on to 3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS’ positions in the event of their being overrun by the enemy attack now in progress.
    No. 4 Company is to attack WOOD at 928680, No. 3 Company to counter-attack WOOD at 936675.
    Gunner Observation Post to report to No. 3 Company.
    Intelligence Observation Post with wireless to contact 3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS and keep Battalion H.Q. informed of the situation.
    2230 hours
    Commanding Officer went to contact 3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS.
    2245 hours
    No. 1 Company reported 12 tanks moving into CARPIQUET.
    By last light the enemy counter-attack fizzled out having got tanks up to the outskirts of CHEUX and advanced their infantry only a small distance.
    Little accurate information available.
    Throughout the day there has been intermittent shelling and Mortar fire on the Battalion position, which has caused some casualties.
    There has also been heavy rain.
    001 Link ASCOUGH LC 664660 5TH BN 29 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS VIII. F. 4.
    002 Link BOWDITCH GH 2666205 5TH BN 29 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 4.
    004 Link COBBY GR 2664221 5TH BN 29 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 2.
    005 Link DEAN XT 2665611 5TH BN 29 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS V. D. 11.
    006 Link DOLLING KH 2664176 5TH BN 29 Jun 1944 COLDSTREAM GUARDS III. J. 23.

    1944 June 30
    Also see News Sheet
    0100 hours
    A Battalion of Canadians who are taking part in tomorrow’s attack have moved into position around No. 1 Company in the MARCELET Area.
    0300 hours
    No. 3 Company Patrol returned and report no enemy at 966667 but an enemy post at 963672.
    0330 hours
    No. 1 Company Patrol returned and report no enemy at 957686 but heard enemy patrols or snipers on the move.
    1100 hours
    The attack by 3 Canadian Division is cancelled and their Battalion at MARCELET is to withdraw from our area at 1530 hours.
    1330 hours
    'O’ Group.
    Platoon of No. 2 Company out at the MARCELET strong point to be relieved by another Platoon of No. 2 Company.
    No. 1 Company to send out recce patrols to the AERODROME to listen for enemy movement at 960682.
    No. 4 Company to send a Recce Patrol to confirm and add to the information known about the enemy post 963672.
    1630 hours
    Canadian Battalion moved out.
    1700 hours
    Canadian Battalion at VILLENEUVE 9590 is to lay a minefield from their position up to the edge of MARCELET at 945688.
    They are to begin laying from their end tonight.
    1800 hours
    Int. man sent to contact 6th Battalion R.W.F. (53 Division) who have moved into NORREY EN BESSIN 9290.
  11. dbf

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    Map of CHEUX, Sheet No. 37/16 S.E., showing positions of

    5th Bn Coldstream Guards
    3rd Bn Irish Guards
    1st Bn Welsh Guards


    1 SS
    12 SS


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Aug 19, 2017
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    The official news sheet of 5th COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    Published Daily
    Price:- Gratis
    No. 1
    Monday 26th June 1944.

    B.B.C. NEWS
    Fierce fighting was going on in the streets of CHERBOURG late last night and there were signs that the fall of the great French port could not be delayed much longer. American troops pushed into the City from all sides during the afternoon and evening in the face of sporadic machine gun and rifle fire and soon hundreds of German prisoners were streaming into the Allied lines. On the left of the Allied line British and Canadian troops have enlarged their positions after some more stiff fighting.

    Russian troops are storming the streets of VITEBSK, chief German Base in White Russia. Five German Infantry Division have been surrounded. It’s just three years to the day since Hitler ordered his troops to march into White Russia.

    Admiral MOUNTBATTEN, Supreme Commander South East Asia Command, has congratulated the British 14th ARMY on its victory in clearing the Japanese from the ASSAM-BURMA Road, the vital supply road that runs from KOHIMA to IMPHAL.

    In the South West Pacific, the Allied forces in BIAK ISLAND, North of DUTCH NEW GUINEA have killed over 300 more Japanese in mopping up operations.

    Hundreds of British and American heavy bombers from both Britain and Italy yesterday attacked targets at many pints in FRANCE.

    In Italy American and French troops of the 5th ARMY have forced the Germans back on a front of some 40 miles running inland from the West Coast. On the Coast itself the Americans have captured FOLLONICA.

    A CHUNGKING message says three Japanese columns are driving down on the communication centre of HENGANG in the Chinese province of HOUNAN. Chungking says the fall of HENGANG would deprive the Chinese and American Air Force of one of their main bases in South China.

    NOTE:- This information is restricted and must not be repeated in letters home.

    1. The main features of the present situation are an increasing German lack of infantry to hold the line, and the great difficulties they have experienced in moving their Armoured formations, due to our air superiority. BRITTANY has been almost completely denuded in order to find divisions to hold the Americans at the base of the CHERBOURG peninsular, which despite all their efforts is still only thinly held.

    The strength of the German Armour has been considerably depleted since D-DAY, and now only two Armoured Division are uncommitted - SS REICH and SS ADOLF HITLER. This is slightly compensated by events in the ALENSON area (about 100 South of here) where it is thought 9 and 10 SS Pz Divisions are arriving from ROMANIA. This now is a little uncertain as yet, and the Germans have been to great length to preserve air superiority over this district.

    To the East of CAEN there are two Infantry Divisions, 711 on the Coast and 346 which came from LE HAVRE is around TROARN. To the West of CAEN there is 1 SS Pz Corps, with 21 Pz Division holding the CAEN area, 12 SS (HITLER JUGEND) on their left, and 130 Pz Division (Ex Px Division) in the area of VILLE. It is possible that 1 SS Pz Division (Adolf Hitler) has come into action in this area.

    From VILLE the Germans hold a line which runs roughly:- CAUMONT, ST. LO, ST. JEAN, BAUPIE, LE HAYE DU DUITS. The Germans have here 6 Divisions which include 2 Pz on the extreme right, 3 Para East of St. LO, and 17 Pz SS opposite CARENTAN.

    No Panthers have yet been found knocked out by a head-on shot, but the sides have proved to be very vulnerable and can be pierced by a PIAT. With the exception of 21 Pz Div all the other Armoured Divs have got Panther tanks in fair numbers, Tigers are few and far between, French and Czech tanks are fairly numerous, but by far the commonest tank now in action is the Pz Kiv IV.

    Some German saboteurs and agents have been picked up, but the current stories of civilian snipers are wholly untrue and without foundation.

    Extremely valuable work is being done by Pro Allied partisans behind the German lines, and the French population have been co-operative and helpful. These rumours of French saboteurs do little to encourage good relations with the local inhabitants and must not be repeated and spread about.

    It is foolish to stand in the open and gaze up at German aircraft when they are being engaged by Anti-Aircraft fire. Many were doing this this morning.

    At the present moment we are attacking South East in an area North of MON DRAINVILLE 0263. When Security permits details of this attack will be given.

    The reports of street fighting in CHERBOURG are true, except that it is not Americans who are fighting, but mutinous Russian troops who form part of the Garrison.
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    The official news sheet of 5th COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    Published Daily
    Price:- Gratis
    No. 2
    Tuesday 27th June 1944.

    B.B.C. NEWS
    CHERBOURG is now in Allied hands. American troops captured this great port and naval base last night after fierce street fighting. It is expected that Allied engineers and repair squads will soon have the port in working order. In the Eastern half of the Normandy bridgehead British forces struck again yesterday morning and after a day of hard slogging pushed forward some three miles at a point West of CAEN. The attack was still going on last night and it looked like developing into the biggest battle so far fought on the CAEN TILLY Sector. More than 20,000 prisoners have been taken in Normandy since the original Allied landings just three weeks ago.

    In Italy the 5th ARMY have taken the port of PIOMBINO on the West Coast and 8th ARMY men have gained more ground in the central sector.

    The Red Army has captured the fortress town of VITEBSK and liberated nearly 2,000 other places in White Russia. Soviet forces have driven on thirty miles South West of VITEBSK and to the North West they have captured a place two thirds of the way towards the key town of POLOTSK. The Russians have also made more headway in FINLAND and the Finnish Parliament is reported to have met in secret session.

    The Germans sent more of their flying bombs over Southern England during the night. Casualties and damage have been reported. British fighters have shot down more of the robots over the CHANNEL.

    A new Allied Air Arm has been set up. It is called the Far Eastern Air Force and its headquarters are in AUSTRALIA.

    In the South West Pacific, Allied Liberators from NEW GUINEA have again bombed RABAUL in New Britain and airfields on NOEMFOOR Island, West of BIAK. In the Central Pacific American Marines on SAIPAN Island have now established themselves firmly on high ground giving them complete control of MAGICIENNE Bay.

    NOTE:- This information is restricted and must not be repeated in letters home.

    The recent attack South West of CAEN is progressing satisfactorily and by mid-day our forward troops had reached COLLEVILLE 9265, GRAINVILLE SUR ODIN 9164, VENDES 8665. Fighting RAURAY 8865 and COLLEVILLE has been particularly severe. This Sector is held by 12 SS Division (Hitler Jugend) who are thought to have their main defences to the North of the CAEN-VILLERS BOCAGE Road. Panther tanks have been in action North of RAURAY 8865, and several were knocked out. This battle is still in progress.

    2. Details of the enemy order of battle have reached Companies in the Brigade Intelligence Summary, which they will receive daily, therefore in future only items of interest on the Battalion front and general Intelligence news not included in the Brigade Summary will be given in this section.

    3. Material for addition in the Battalion War Diary is always welcome. Any Battalion artists who can produce sketches of the Battalion areas, or scenes connected with the Battalion, should send them to Battalion H.Q. where they will be most gratefully received for inclusion in the War Diary. Detailed accounts by Patrol Leaders, Platoon Commanders etc of any actions they may personally take part in are also required.
  14. dbf

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    The official news sheet of 5th COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    Published Daily
    Price:- Gratis
    No. 3
    Wednesday 28th June 1944.

    B.B.C. NEWS
    In Normandy British troops have pushed forward to within about six miles of CAEN and were last reported to be fighting on the shallow river that runs through the town. There has been some hard fighting in the last 24 hours. Once again most of it has been done by our Infantry though our tanks and guns have given them good support. It is early to say that we’ve made a real breakthrough. There is a lot of German armour about and it’s difficult to destroy in the wooded country. In the tip of the CHERBOURG Peninsular American troops are wiping out the last remnants of organised resistance. German casualties since the first landings are stated to be about 70,000.

    In Italy American troops of the 5th ARMY have pushed on more than 10 miles beyond PIOMBINO on the West Coast. In the Central Sector 8th ARMY men have swept the Germans out of CHIUSI and were last reported to be pressing on North West of the town. British Army casualties in Italy down to the fall of ROME were 73,122 killed, wounded, and missing. These included Dominion and Indian troops.

    Red Army forces in their drive towards MINSK the Capital of White Russia have captured the rail junction of ORHSA. They have also fought their way into the streets of MOGILEV. It is estimated that 20,000 Germans were killed in the assault on VITEBSK and that 10,000 surrendered. The Russians have captured many more places in FINLAND. German troops are reported to be passing through HELSINKI the Finnish Capital towards Finland’s Eastern front.

    R.A.F. bombers from Britain were over German Occupied territory last night in “great strength”. The Germans sent more of their flying bombs over Southern England.

    The attack to our South has progressed satisfactorily and to date we have crossed the River ODON and have got two crossings over it in the area of MONDRIANVILLE 9263 and TOURVILLE 9364 and our armour has reached the high ground above BARON 9462. The Artillery fire which you hear going on is directed in support of this attack. Further details will be given later.

    The area the Battalion is at present occupying was previously a strong enemy locality held by part of the Hitler Jugend. A prisoner from this Division was recently captured by No. 2 Company from a dug out where he was found hiding. Large quantities of enemy equipment have been found in the areas of No.s 1 and 3 Companies.

    At present the main opposition to us is around the Aerodrome of CARPIQUET 9668 which is also held by SS Troops.

    Enemy 8 centimeter Mortars and 10.5 Howitzers have shelled the Battalion position at intervals. The enemy also have several six barrel smoke mortars. You an tell when these are being fired by the very high pitched whine they make when going overhead.

    Numerous enemy documents have been handed in to the Intelligence Section. Further contributions will be welcome and are of value even though they may be very old.

    Reliable reports from the WELSH GUARDS state that they were bombed this afternoon by enemy flying a British Typhoon.
    All Ranks should be alert and on their guard against any further attacks of this description.

    We regret to announce that the Battalion have suffered a small number of casualties, some fatal. Fuller details will be given later.
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    The official news sheet of 5th COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    Published Daily
    Price:- Gratis
    No. 4
    Thursday 29th June 1944.

    B.B.C. NEWS
    In NORMANDY British troops have driven a wedge nearly five miles deep into the German defences South West of CAEN after three day’s heavy fighting.
    We are now established in great strength six miles from CAEN and the Germans are rushing up infantry and tanks to keep our forces from closing round the town.
    It is estimated that we have knocked out some 60 enemy tanks in the last few days. Our own losses of armour have been light.
    It is now known that all the British troops in FRANCE are part of the British SECOND ARMY a new formation under the command of Lieutenant General M.C. DEMPSEY. Meanwhile American troops are wiping out the remaining pockets of resistance in the tip of the CHERBOURG Peninsular.
    It is estimated that the haul of prisoners in the Peninsular will finally be between 30 and 40 thousand.

    In ITALY Allied troops have made more progress against stiffening opposition in country which favours defence. The Germans are demolishing whole villages and turning them into strong points in an effort to check the Allied drive.

    The Red Army has captured MOGILEV, last of the enemy chain of bastions across White Russia. The road to MINSK Capital of White Russia now lies open to four converging Russian armies. The Russians have also gained more ground in FINLAND.

    In the South West Pacific Australian forces pushing up the coast of NEW GUINEA have now gained control of HANSA BAY. In the Central Pacific American forces have gained more ground on SAIPAN in the MARIANAS. North of Japan American warships have bombarded the Southern tip of PARAMUSHIRU in the KURILE ISLANDS.

    Governor DEWEY of New York has been nominated as Republican candidate for the United States Presidency. Governor BRICKER of OHIO has been chosen as Republican candidate for the Vice Presidency.

    Royal Air Force bombers were over German occupied territory again last night. More flying bombs came over Southern England during the night. They caused damage and casualties.


    Our forward troops have now pushed forward and hold a line running GRAINVILLE 9084 - GARVUS 9161 - TOURMAUVILLE 9362 - MEIBURD 9564 - HAUT DE VERSON 9565 - CARPIQUET 9669.
    Both 2 SS (Reich) and 1SS (Adolf Hitler) have recently been identified. 1SS Division on the right of our Sector and 2SS Division on the Left of our sector, from which it appears possible they may attempt to squeeze out our salient with converging attacks. However both are under strength and not fully trained and 177 Division has arrived in a very piecemeal condition after heavy interference by the R.A.F.

    Our enemy in the CARPIQUET Area have to-day confirmed their activity to tiresome by largely accurate shelling. It seems probable that two types of weapons are being used for this purpose, the 10.5 light field howitzer and the six barrelled mortar. The shells from the six barrelled mortar make a high pitched and distinctive whine when coming over. Measures have been taken to reply in kind.
    A few Germans on the Aerodrome have been visible to the forward Platoon of No. 2 Company and the Carrier patrol who have seen to it that they are kept well on the hop.
    The Commanding Officer in his Scout Car had a successful encounter with a German Staff Car this morning, which was written off by the efforts of Sergeant TODD and Guardsman TOWNEND. The Scout Car contained a Signal Officer and some valuable documents were captured.
    No. 4 Company also brought in a prisoner, who like the Signal Officer appeared to be a bad map reader and also accidentally, confirmed that our neighbours in CARPIQUET are still the 12 SS (Hitler Jugend).
    German equipment has been of use and Battalion H.Q. telephone system is now reinforced by some German telephones, also please note the snipers are using some German camouflage suits.
    A recent Intelligence Summary contains a warning that the Germans have recently taken to putting small booby traps in rifles and pistols. Care and caution is always necessary in dealing with captured enemy equipment.


    The following members of the Battalion have been killed in action:-
    2664041 Guardsman MAHER, J.
    2653958 Guardsman SMITH, L.
    3854048 Guardsman HACKING, J. (F.L.R.)
    2663250 Guardsman BRAZIER, L. (F.L.R.)

    The undermentioned have died of wounds:-
    2664660 Lance-Corporal ASCOUGH, L. (F.L.R.)
    2663666 Guardsman NEWTON H. (F.L.R.) N.B. No record found in CWGC Roll of Honour.

    The following personnel have been wounded:-
    2654344 Sergeant BENNETT, G
    2662473 Guardsman BATTEN, R.
    2663547 Guardsman LANGHORN, E.
    2658474 Guardsman ELLISON, D.
    2663054 Guardsman CREIGHTON, P.
    2665895 Guardsman LUDBROOK, B.
    2662515 Lance-Corporal TOBUTT, S.
    2662480 Guardsman JENKINSON, L.
    2660094 Guardsman THACKER, G.
    2664109 Guardsman HUNT, E.
    2664176 Guardsman DOLLING, K.
    2653396 Guardsman MULLEN, J.
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    The official news sheet of 5th COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    Published Daily
    Price:- Gratis
    No. 5
    Friday 30th June 1944.

    B.B.C. NEWS
    In NORMANDY British troops have reacted vigorously to a German counter-attack on the Right flank of our wedge below CAEN. The enemy thrust came late yesterday while our troops were building up their newly won positions. There was some hard fighting also around the head of our salient where the Germans are defending the town of EBRACY with determination. Our troops have made limited progress in hard fighting North of CAEN.
    American troops are steadily wiping out the remaining pockets of resistance in the tip of the CHERBOURG Peninsular.
    More than 290 German tanks have been knocked out in NORMANDY since D-DAY and German fighter bases have been forced back as much as 100 miles inland.

    In ITALY the 5th ARMY troops were last reported less than 30 miles from the big port of LEGHORN on the West Coast. 8th ARMY troops have gained more ground North of PERUJA. Since the beginning of the present offensive we have taken 32,000 prisoners on all fronts in ITALY.

    In White Russia the Red Army has captured BOBRUISK and further North had pushed to within a mile or two of the 1939 Polish frontier. On the Finnish front our Allies have captured the captital of the KARELLAN - FINNISH Republic and thus gained control of the whole of the railway linking LENINGRAD with MURMANSK. STOCKHOLM messages say it is now confirmed that General DIETL, German Commander in Northern Finland has been killed in an air crash.

    In German controlled DENMARK there have been more clashes in the streets of the Capital - COPENHAGEN.

    In the Pacific Allied aircraft have attacked Japanese bases and strong points on a front of some 2,000 miles from TIMOR to RAUBEL and the Northern Solomons.

    More than 1,500 American bombers and fighters yesterday attacked aircraft factories and other targets in Central Germany.

    More flying bombs came over Southern England during the night.

    1. GENERAL
    Despite an enemy counter-attack last night our bridgehead over the River ODON has been held and broadened. The counter-attack which was launched at 1800 hours yesterday was made by 4 P.G.R. of 2 SS Division Das Reich using tanks and infantry. The infantry attack was broken up by our artillery before they had reached their objective which was believed to be CHEUX 9167. The tanks got a bit further but have had no lasting success. The front now runs roughly; JUVIGNY - VENDES excl BRETTVILLETTE ex GRANVILLE excl HAUT DES FORGE - GARVUS BARON - excl VERSON excl CARPIQUET.

    Last night Typhoons attacked CARPIQUET Aerodrome with rockets and knocked out a number of tanks in the area of the hangers. 12 tanks were seen going into the aerodrome by No. 1 Company just before last light, but they were unable to say what type they were. Successful patrols were sent out to recce the South of the aerodrome by No. 1 Company and No. 3 Company. They returned with valuable information and suffered no casualties.
    The Typhoon attack and our own gunners appear to have given the enemy guns a bit of a headache and today there has been only occasional shelling of the Battalion area and no damage has been done.
    Further German equipment is now in use and the Padre has been mechanised and given an ex-German VOLKSWAGEN.

    Reports state that wine bottles are being used as improvised incendiary bombs. They are filled with creosote and petrol and have a pull igniter wired to the bottle. A new mine has been encountered on the American front. It consists of an arch shaped wooden box wit an explosive charge of 1.9 lbs. The container has a metal arch which allows it to be picked up by a dectector.

    Extract from B.B.C. news. “The Second Army have a position within half a mile of CARPIQUET.

    The following items are not allowed to be bought from local inhabitants when we next see them:- Bread, flour, meat, potatoes.
    Such items as cheese, butter and milk however may be brought.

    Germans are leaving behind small quantities of poisoned food. Do not therefore eat food which has been left behind, until it has been passed by the Medical Officer.

    The Padre is now to be seen driving about in a German “People’s” Car. As yet there are no Division or Battalion signs on it so please do not shoot him.

    Several of our fighters were soon to be firing rockets on to the CARPIQUET area yesterday evening. All the aircraft got away safely.


    Further casualties within the Battalion are as follows:-

    2664221 Lance-Corporal COBBY, G.
    2665611 Guardsman DEAN, T.
    2661135 Guardsman JOHNSON, T.
    [2666205] Guardsman BOWDITCH, G.H. (Mortar Platoon)
    They were members of the Standing Patrol East of MARCELET.

    The following have been evacuated:-
    2655277 Lance-Sergeant NEATE, R., No. 1 Company, Synovitis Knee, 128 Field Ambulance
    2660841 Lance-Corporal STANLEY, H., No. 2 Company, G.S.W. Left Ankle, 128 Field Ambulance
    2661041 Lance-Corporal BIDWELL, P., No. 2 Company, Exhaustion, 128 Field Ambulance
    2663282 Lance-Corporal DAWSON, G., No. 2 Company, Exhaustion, 128 Field Ambulance
    5250401 Guardsman GREEN, S., No. 1 Company, Contusion of Chest, 128 Field Ambulance
    2662042 Guardsman BROWN, R., No. 1 Company, Exhaustion, 128 Field Ambulance
    2660522 Guardsman PHILIPS, F., No. 4 Company, Dermatitis, 128 Field Ambulance
    2663790 Guardsman FORTH, R., No. 1 Company, Exhaustion, 128 Field Ambulance
    2665393 Lance-Corporal WHITLEY, D., No. 4 Company, G.S.W. Left Flank, 128 Field Ambulance
    2661474 Guardsman READHEAD, A., No. 3 Company, Sprained Ankle, 128 Field Ambulance
    5182222 Company Sergeant-Major WHYTE, G., No. 2 Company, Tenosynovitis ankle, 194 Field Ambulance
    2662147 Guardsman BAMLETT, T., Support Company, Injury to Back, 128 Field Ambulance
    2658960 Guardsman DONALD, A., No. 2 Company, G.S.W. Left Hand, 128 Field Ambulance
    2658017 Guardsman JUBY, G., No. 4 Company, Particulars not yet known.
    Pieter F likes this.
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    5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    July 1944

    Lieutenant-Colonel Lord STRATHEDEN - Commanding Officer
    Major W.S. STEWART BROWN, D.S.O. - Second-in-Command
    Captain C.W. LAMBTON - Adjutant
    Captain (QM) S.B.R. COOPER - Quartermaster
    Captain J. PEREIRA - Intelligence Officer
    Captain P.J. DELLER, R.A.M.C. - Medical Officer
    Reverend R.H. TOMLINSON, R.A.Ch.D. - Chaplain
    2654837 S. LONSBROUGH - Regimental Sergeant-Major
    2648779 E.J. LOVEJOY - Regimental Quartermaster Sergeant
    2653255 S.G.E. REASON - Drill Sergeant
    2654476 W.H.A. STANLEY - Drill Sergeant

    Major C.H. FEILDEN - Company Commander
    Captain R.G. STYLE - Signal Platoon Officer
    Captain I.O. LIDDELL - Motor Transport Officer
    Lieutenant R. THOMPSON - Pioneer Platoon Officer
    2654411 T. GRIFFITHS - Company Sergeant-Major

    Major B.E. LUARD, M.C. - Company Commander
    Captain P.L. FANNING - Carrier Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant R.G. LOMER - Carrier Platoon Officer
    Captain G.B. MacKEAN - Anti-Tank Platoon Commander
    Captain B. BLOWER - Anti-Tank Platoon Officer
    Captain J.T. PAGET - Mortar Platoon Commander
    2655712 D. HAMNETT - Company Sergeant-Major

    No. 1 COMPANY
    Major K.M. THORNTON - Company Commander
    Captain F.D.W. BROWN - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant H.R. GRAHAM-VIVIAN - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant R.F.C. PARRINGTON - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant C.D. LAWRIE - Platoon Commander
    2657384 H. HARRISON - Company Sergeant-Major

    No. 2 COMPANY
    Major J.d'H. HAMILTON - Company Commander
    Captain The Honourable D.M.G.J. WILLOUGHBY - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant K.G.F. KENDALL - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant G.B. FALLER - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant J.N.M. COLES - Platoon Commander
    5182222 G. WHYTE - Company Sergeant-Major

    No. 3 COMPANY
    Major M.E. ADEANE - Company Commander
    Captain A. GIBBS - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant Lord BALGONIE - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant Lord BRABOURNE - Platoon Commander
    2658115 J.C. COWLEY - Company Sergeant-Major

    No. 4 COMPANY
    Major M.P.G. HOWARD - Company Commander
    Captain D.I.T. EASTMAN - (Company) Second-in-Command
    Lieutenant H.C.H. BOWSER - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant M.W. WALL - Platoon Commander
    Lieutenant G.W. MYRDDIN-EVANS - Platoon Commander
    2653493 - Company Sergeant-Major

    Captain Marquis of HARTINGTON
    Lieutenant Earl of PLYMOUTH
    Lieutenant O. WRIGHTSON
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    1944 July 1
    Also see News Sheet
    0300 hours
    No. 1 Company Recce Patrol back from their listening post on the Centre of the Aerodrome report no signs of enemy movement, but bring back bearings on the flashes of gun position behind CARPIQUET.
    0320 hours
    No. 4 Company patrol led by Lieutenant WALL return from recce of enemy position by the hangers and dispersal sheds of 967672.
    The position is surrounded by a 7’ wire mesh fence, followed by a dannert wire fence and trip wires.
    The Patrol succeeded in getting through the wire, observing and returning without being noticed.
    They also reported a sentry in the WOOD at close by at 962673. [sic]
    1330 hours
    Commanding Officer held an ‘O’ Group.
    The following troops in and near the Battalion area are now in Support of the Battalion in the event of an enemy attack:-
    Squadron FIFE AND FORFAR YEOMANRY, Battery of M.10 Anti-Tank guns.
    At 1500 hours
    Companies will carry out the following reliefs:-
    No. 3 Company to change with No. 1 Company
    No. 1 Company to change with No. 2 Company
    No. 2 Company to change with No. 3 Company
    Patrols: It has been decided that the post recce’d last night is too strong for a fighting patrol, but Lieutenant WALL is to lead a fighting patrol to capture the sentry in the wood below.
    1730 hours
    The Battalion 3” Mortars are to have a shoot on an enemy position located at the top of the hangers at 963686.
    1615 hours
    Battalion visited by G.O.C.
    1800 hours
    From various intelligence sources it appears that former reports of CARPIQET being evacuated are more likely to mean that the Battalion of 12 SS is pulling out and being relieved either by troops from a new Infantry Division or by troops from 1 SS Division.
    If it is 1 SS Division then an attack on MARCELET is likely.
    2100 hours
    'O’ Group.
    Commanding Officer gave out orders for a counter attack on MARCELET in the event of it being overrun.
    Attack made by No. 1 Company left, No. 4 Company right, Start Line East end of WOOD 933687.
    Inter Company boundary Road St MAUVIEU - MARCELET.
    FORTH AND FIFES to support attack from 936679.
    A large scale ‘Stonk’ to be brought down on the line TRACK JUNCTION 947686 - 955184 - 955675.
    The Platoon in the hangers at 955683 withdraws. (This is a standing order in the case of any attack on MARCELET.)

    1944 July 2
    Also see News Sheet
    0415 hours
    No. 4 Company patrol reports that they were unable to capture a prisoner owing to the wood being heavily defended.
    It is wired all round, contains 2 L.M.G.s and the patrol after getting through the wire came under L.M.G. fire and had grenades thrown at them.
    The managed to withdraw with only two slight casualties.
    0930 hours
    Brigadier to Battalion H.Q.
    It still appears possible that CARPIQUET is being evacuated, and a Carrier patrol is to go out to 960672 to see if there is any reaction.
    1130 hours
    Patrol postponed owing to AGRA registering programme that is going on.
    1200 hours From Canadian Liaison it is gathered that the attack on CARPIQET that was cancelled is now on again and due on the 4th.
    1400 hours
    Carrier Patrol went out and found position still occupied.
    1500 hours
    Commanding Officer attended Conference held.
    1330 hours
    Visit by Officers of 1st Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS.
    1400 hours
    Major HOWARD commanding No. 4 Company killed by shell splinter.

    :poppy: Major MARK PAUL GEOFFREY HOWARD 72092, 5th Bn., Coldstream Guards who died age 26 on 02 July 1944
    Son of Geoffrey William Algernon Howard and of Ethel Christian Howard (nee Methuen). B.A. (Cantab.).
    Remembered with honour BAYEUX WAR CEMETERY
    Grave/Memorial Reference: VIII. F. 6.

    1900 hours
    Battalion ‘O’ Group.
    In order to from a firm base, from which the Canadian attack can be launched, the following readjustments to the Battalion position are being made at dusk this evening.
    No. 4 Company to occupy East end of MARCELET,
    No. 3 Company to withdrawn outlying Platoon at East end of MARCELET and to occupy West end of MARCELET.
    Remaining Companies unchanged.
    An S.P. Battery 21 Anti-Tank has come under command and will harbour in the fields 930682 ready to go into action North of MARCELET.
    Patrols tonight will be confined to a listening post from No. 3 Company to keep watch on the enemy post at 956673.
    Enemy shelling today has been less frequent, and appears to be mostly stray shots from a heavy gun near CAEN.
    It has been raining most of the day.
    It has in fact rained every day since we have been in FRANCE.

    1944 July 3
    Also see News Sheet
    1200 hours
    Squadron 3rd Battalion ROYAL TANK REGIMENT have taken over the role of the FIFE AND FORFAR Squadron.
    1210 hours
    S.P. Battery 21st Anti-Tank have come under command.
    1215 hours
    No. 4 Company report that a sniper came into their area, but after firing a few shots with no result he was seen off.
    The Company is changing the Platoons affected to alternate positions.
    1600 hours
    7 Canadian Brigade H.Q. and troops start moving in to Battalion area prior to tomorrow’s attack.
    1630 hours
    Commanding Officer to H.Q. 7th Brigade to arrange adjustment of Company positions necessitated by the preparatory barrage.
    1631 hours
    Heavyish shoot on to Battalion area by enemy guns in BRETTEVILLE area 8864.
    1800 hours
    Orders given out:-
    At 0430 hours everyone will be down in slit trenches while barrage is going on.
    No. 4 Company will move positions North and in MARCELET to an area further South.
    No. 2 Company to send a Recce patrol to discover if the post at 956673 is still occupied.
    2100 hours Commanding Officer went round the Companies and gave the details of the Canadian attack tomorrow.
    It has been raining all day.

    1944 July 4
    Also see News Sheet
    0300 hours
    Patrol led by Lieutenant KENDALL returned and reported enemy post at 956673 still occupied.
    0500 hours
    H HOUR for Canadian attack.
    The attack is to be carried out by 4 battalions supported by 12 Field Regiment and Mediums, 1 Heavy, The RODNEY and two monitors will also be firing.
    The total number of shells coming down is 80, 536 from 428 guns.
    1130 hours
    Visited by Press correspondents.
    1200 hours
    By 1200 hours the attack had captured the village of CARPIQUET and mopping up was in progress.
    The Southern hangers were only half cleared, and phase II (the capture of the buildings at 9767 was still to come).
    Information as to the disposition of own troops on the flanks was scanty and during the morning there were reports of enemy tanks advancing North from MOUEN 9365 and of enemy infantry at VILLONEUVE 9470.
    The Brigadier arrived at 1230 hours and went with the Commanding Officer to the H.Q. of the Canadian Brigade, and it is now fairly clear that VERSON 9663 and VILLONEUVE are in our hands and there is no immediate likelihood of a counter attack.
    1600 hours
    Canadians still held up in Southern hangers where they have had knocked out and they withdrew.
    1730 hours
    Battalion ‘O’ Group.
    As a result of the Canadian being held up and Phase II being postponed, the Winnipeg Battalion is to withdraw from the half of the Southern hangers that they have captured and the woods to the West, and we are to hold MARCELET as a Battalion position, with the reduced Winnipeg Battalion in support in the are of MARCELET Chateau.
    No. 1 Company moves to area 943689 (Reserve Company),
    No. 2 Company on a reverse slope at 945678,
    No. 3 Company moves slightly West so as to cover ground in area 938680.
    No. 4 Company remains in present position.
    Two Companies of HIGHLAND LIGHT INFANTRY will relieve No.s 1 and 2 Companies in ST MAUVIEU and the change will take place as soon as the new Company positions are dug and ready for occupation.
    17-pounders 21st Anti-Tank, 1 Troop deployed North of MARCELET covering North East 27-pounders in area South West of MARCELET covering Southern approaches.
    S.P. Battery 21st Anti-Tank 17-pounder area 944677 and 17-pounder 947678. (Remainder of Battery casualties).
    This covers the East approach to MARCELET.
    Battalion 6-pounders. Sec in arear of No. 2 Company, Sec in area of wood 946684, Sec in Battalion H.Q. area. 3” Mortar Platoon Sect under command No. 3 Company remainder of Platoon back with Battalion H.Q. M.M.G. Platoon no change. 4.2 Mortars no change.
    Squadron of 3 ROYAL TANK REGIMENT is harboured in area 9937483.
    Battalion of WINNIPEGs in area 945684 with a Squadron 10 Canadian Tank Corps and Platoon M.M.G.
    Battalion H.Q. 938688.
    During the day intermittent shelling continued.
    This daily round of shelling is liable to come down anywhere in the Battalion area though it comes more frequently on the East end of MARCELET and SOULIESSE LE PERRON.
    The fire is almost all blind as we are only under observation in a very few places and it does not appear to be particularly connected with movement in these areas.
    The rain still continues.
    2300 hours
    Patrols: Tonight a listening patrol will be sent to the WOOD at 957673 to observe enemy movements.
    2330 hours
    Information received - Canadian minefield from VILLENEUVE to MARCELET is to be completed tonight.

    1944 July 5
    Also see News Sheet
    0415 hours
    Battalion change over reported complete.
    0430 hours
    Listening Patrol from No. 2 Company reported that the WOOD at 957673 is occupied and that they were fired on by the enemy.
    0730 hours
    No. 4 Company report that they were fired on by an enemy tank behind the Hangers at 960674.
    D.F. fire was brought on to it to try and force it into the view of the S.P. guns but without success.
    0830 hours
    No. 2 Company report enemy activity in WOOD 933674. D.F. fire brought down.
    0900 hours
    Commanding Officer went round the Company positions.
    1000 hours
    Intelligence Observation Post set up at 945674.
    All the forward edge of the hill down into the ODON valley is visible from here and also the town of CAEN.
    There are no signs of enemy movement.
    2100 hours
    The WINNIPEG Battalion is to take over the forward half of the MARCELET area.
    No. 4 Company is relieved and goes into an area around 938687.
    No. 2 Company is relieved and goes into an area in the WOOD 948687.
    Anti-Tank lay out is unchanged except that two companies 6-pounders go to No. 3 Company area.
    The change over is to take place at 2300 hours.
    All patrols tonight will be done by the WINNIPEG Battalion.
    2200 hours
    CARPIQUET shelled by rocket projectors.
    Shelling today has been less than usual.
    It seems that CARPIQUET draws most of the enemy’s attention.
    The weather is greatly improved today, but unfortunately the roads turn almost instantly from deep mud to clouds of dust.

    1944 July 6
    Also see News Sheet
    1000 hours
    The Battalion now fulfils an independent role and forms the MARCELET defence force, of which the Commanding Officer is in charge.
    The under command remain the same with the exception of:-
    WINNIPEG Battalion now replaced by company QUEENS OWN RIFLES
    Squadron 3 ROYAL TANK REGIMENT replaced by Squadron 10th ROYAL CANADIAN TANK CORPS.
    The Battalion has a call on two Field Regiments and two Medium Regiments.
    The present layout is as follows:-
    B Company QUEENS OWN RIFLES - East end of MARCELET 950683;
    No. 2 Company on reverse slope around CROSSROADS 945676;
    No. 3 Company further back on the same slope around 970683;
    No. 4 Company in reserve, with counter-attack role supported by Squadron of tanks, to counter attack on to No. 2 Company positions;
    No. 1 Company in reserve around 973690.
    S.P. Anti-Tank Battery of 21st Anti-Tank - 7-pounder in No. 2 Company area and Troop to East of MARCELET.
    17-pounder Battery of 21st Anti-Tank - 6 guns covering the North East approaches and the ground to the South East of MARCELET.
    6-pounders. Anti-Tank Platoon Section with Battalion H.Q., Section with No. 2 Company, Section in WOOD at 946683.
    D.F. Tasks:-
    131 N.W. end of WOOD 953678 (S.O.S.)
    132 WOOD 956673.
    133 BUILDINGS 952691.
    134 WOOD 952674.
    The Canadian Minefield from VILLENEUVE to MARCELET has been completed but we have not been given the details.
    Battalion H.Q. is at 937688.
    1600 hours
    B Company QUEENS OWN RIFLES are to send out one patrol tonight, with the object of finding out if the three WOODS in 9567 are clear, and then carrying out a listening watch on the Aerodrome.
    1800 hours
    Intelligence Observation Post reports occasional men moving about in the Souther hangers, and dust thrown up by M.T. going down the CAEN to VERSON road.
    Little or no movement has been visible all today, and though the road to “O.P. land” is under observation at 945615, and the road into CARPIQUET along about half its length, the enemy do no react to the streams of men and vehicles that go by at intervals and only a direct approach to their position seems to bring down their fire.
    2400 hours There has been very little shelling today, and except for a stonk or two this evening, very quiet all day.

    1944 July 7
    Also see News Sheet
    0415 hours
    Canadian patrol returned and reports WOODS in 9567 clear of enemy.
    They got into the nearest of the hangers which was empty, but there were sounds of men moving in the others and they withdrew.
    0900 hours
    Observation Post reports enemy vehicles moving along ROAD in area of ETERVILLE 9864.
    Gunners are to put down nuisance shots on this road.
    1550 hours
    Two enemy tanks reported between AUTHIE and FRANQUEVILLE at about 985700.
    2030 hours
    Battalion ‘O’ Group.
    Listening patrol to go out from No. 3 Company to 967670.
    Mortar Platoon (less one Section) to take part in Brigade Mortar shoot on to East end of HANGERS 966673 at 1030 hours tomorrow.
    4.2” Mortars have moved into the Battalion area at 935676.
    M.M.G. Platoon also taking part has moved in around 933669.
    2230 hours
    Details of 1 CORPS attack from the North down to CAEN received.
    2330 hours
    Battalion H.Q. shelled.
    This seems to be a nightly occurrence generally at the same time.
    Today like yesterday has been on the whole very quiet.
    Only very occasional movement is visible from the Observation Post apart from the fairly regular stream of traffic along the CAEN - ESTERVILLE road where the Germans are taking up new positions.
    Shelling has been mostly confined to sporadic air burst shots, which have been too high to do any great damage.

    1944 July 8
    Also see News Sheet
    1620 hours
    The Company of QUEENS OWN RIFLES has been relieved by a company R. de CHANDS in order to take part in a final attack on the Aerodrome which is to take place tomorrow.
    No. 4 Company will take over from the R. de CHANDS when this happens and have sent a Liaison Officer there to keep Battalion H.Q. informed when the attack takes place.
    2200 hours
    A Recce Squadron of the INNISKILLINGS went down the road past No. 2 Company and had 3 armoured cars knocked out by the enemy tanks behind the hangers.
    2330 hours
    No. 2 Company is to send out a patrol to help recover the knocked out armoured cars.

    1944 July 9
    1030 hours
    Observation Post reports Canadians have put in their attack and both objectives appear to be finally in our hands (Admin buildings and Southern hangers of the Aerodrome).
    1100 hours
    No. 4 Company took over MARCELET position from the Company of R. de CHANDS, who now cease to be under command.
    1230 hours
    Companies told there will be no “Stand To” tomorrow, but one Officer will be alert and go round the Company positions.
    The Observation Post is to be in position at first light.
    2200 hours
    1 Prisoner of War (Hitler Jugend) taken over from the Canadians.

    1944 July 10
    Also see News Sheet
    0800 hours
    43 Division attack on to the hight ground above VERSON reported by Observation Post.
    The Battalion is now out of sight of the enemy and there has been no shelling all day.
    It has been raining off and on all day, as it has done every day since we arrived.

    1944 July 11
    Also see News Sheet
    1530 hours
    Orders received for move to Concentration Area to rejoin the rest of the Division:-
    Companies march forthwith to BRETTEVILLE 9272 and embus in T.C.L.s.
    Company transport and ‘A’ move independently via main CAEN - BAYEUX road to Concentration Area at 813768, just North of ST MARTIN LES ENTREES 8176.
    1830 hours
    Battalion complete in new Concentration Area.
    The Companies are accommodated in a large hayfield and an orchard just off the main road.

    1944 July 12
    Also see News Sheet
    Today has been devoted to cleaning up and straightening out after the battle.
    A Mobile Bath is at the disposal of the Battalion for the afternoon.

    1944 July 13
    Also see News Sheet
    In the afternoon all Officers went to see a demonstration arranged by Brigade with No. 3 Company and a Squadron of tanks from 1st Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS of “Tank and Infantry co-operation in close country fighting”, designed to meet our needs in the BOCAGE district which lies ahead.

    1944 July 14
    The main items of the training programme for the days ahead are:-
    1. Companies to practice BOCAGE fighting in co-operation with 1st Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS.
    2. Pioneers and Company men to visit ROYAL ENGINEERS mines school at BAYEUX.
    3. Parties to visit local battlefields.
    4. Instruction in the use of German weapons.

    1944 July 15
    Also see News Sheet
    Commanding Officer went to Brigade for Conference on OPERATION GOODWOOD.

    1944 July 16
    1200 hours
    All Officers address by G.O.C. and given outline of GOODWOOD plan.
    1500 hours
    Commanding Officer to Corps H.Q. for Conference on GOODWOOD.

    1944 July 17
    1200 hours Final ‘O’ Group at Brigade H.Q.
    Weather permitting at H HOUR tomorrow 8 CORPS will break out to the East of CAEN and advance with the object of destroying the enemy armour and enlarging the bridgehead.
    On the Left 3 DIVISION is to attack Southwards towards EMIEVILLE 1265 and the high ground South East of TROARN 1667, and on the Right the Canadian Division will cross the ORNE and clear CAEN and its suburbs that lie over the river.
    The whole of BOMBER COMMAND will support the attack and form a corridor by blasting the villages running South to CAGNY 1167 that lie between the 12 and 13 grid and the 09 and 10 grid.
    8 CORPS advances down the Corridor with 11th ARMOURED DIVISION leading, followed by GUARDS ARMOURED DIVISION and 7th ARMOURED DIVISION.
    The first phase of the GUARDS ARMOURED DIVISION advance is to take over CAGNY 1164 from 11th ARMOURED DIVISION and the second phase is the capture of VIMONT 1461.
    32nd GUARDS BRIGADE is to follow the armour.
    5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS leads and after debussing at the orchards in 1165, relieves the armour around CAGNY.
    The Battalion is followed by 1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS who mop up CAGNY then go on to their pivot area around LE HAMEAU DE FRANQUEVILLE 1362.
    3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS then go through to their area around VIMONT and to the North 1561, followed by the 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS who take up a position around BELLENGREVILLE 1461 and to the South.
    1530 hours
    The Commanding Officer gave out the following orders of march:-
    Carrier Platoon (less 2 Sections)
    Detachment 615 Field Squadron ROYAL ENGINEERS (with bulldozers)
    No. 4 Company group (Section 6-pounders, Section Carriers, Section Mortars)
    1000 yards gap
    M.M.G. Platoon
    No. 3 Company Group
    Battalion H.Q.
    Troop 17-pounders 21st Anti-Tank
    Support Company
    No. 2 Company
    Troop 17-pounders
    No. 2 Company
    H.Q. Company
    Residue vehicles of 165 Field Squadron and 21st Anti-Tank,
    Section 128 Field Ambulance
    3x3-tonners with Mines and wire
    No. 1 Company Group
    At the start the wheeled vehicles go first followed by the tracked vehicles which pull out of the column and follow in rear.
    From the Brigade S.P. the column goes as one till it reaches RUCQUEVILLE 8777 from whence there is a separate track for wheels and a separate track for tracked vehicles, both of which lead across country to PEGASUS Bridge at 0974 where the Brigade column halt early tomorrow morning.
    On orders the Battalion then crosses the ORNE goes South down the bomb alley and debus at LE PRIEURE 1165, it having been cleared by No. 4 Company in advance.
    Here all but the essential vehicles are left behind and the Battalion marches to CAGNY and takes up a position around the village with No. 1 Company blocking the road from CAEN at 105645, No. 2 Company blocking road North East at 117644, No. 3 Company blocking road from VIMONT at 114636, No. 4 Company in orchards at 105638.
    When 1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS and 3rd Battalion IRISH GUARDS have passed through and mopped up their areas the Battalion moves up to BELLINGREVILLE which is to be occupied as follows:-
    No. 1 Company astride the railway on the edge of the WOOD at 145608,
    No. 2 Company in ORCHARD AT 138610,
    No. 3 Company in the VILLAGE at 142616,
    No. 4 Company in ORCHARD at 144604.
    Supporting arms as follows:-
    17-pounders, 1 Troop with No. 1 Company firing East, 1 Troop between No.s 2 and 3 Companies firing West.
    6-pounders, 1 Section with No. 4 Company, 1 Section with No. 1 Company, 1 Section with No. 3 Company.
    M.M.G.s to take up a position so as to fire South and South West.
    3” Mortars with D.F.s at 147606 and 146602.
    Artillery (Battery 55 Field Regiment) - There will be no artillery support till mopping up is completed, then their tasks will be:-
    S.O.S. 131 - 148601
    D.F. 132 - 154603
    D.F. 133 - 123605
    Mines - A minefield will be laid from 143603 to 152611.
    Wire - A belt all along the WOODS and ORCHARDS in front of No.s 2 and 4 Companies.
    On arrival Standing Patrols one Section strong are to be sent to CROSSROADS 123603, CHURCH 131599, ROAD JUNCTION 140597.
    Battalion H.Q. will be established at 14615.
    The attack being dependant on the suitability of tomorrow for bombing, no exact timings are yet known.

    1944 July 18
    0800 hours
    Battalion column halted on the high ground above the ORNE at 0776 and awaiting the order to cross PEGASUS Bridge.
    1100 hours
    Battalion crossed the ORNE and proceeded via RANVILLE 1173 and HEROUVILLETTE 1271 to 113713 where the column was ordered to halt.
    1200 hours
    Orders received to move on through the minefield gap at 110704 and take up a position between DEMOUVILLE 1067 and the railway to the South.
    The minefield gap was shelled at intervals while the Battalion column passed through and some casualties resulted.
    1300 hours
    On reaching the forward edge of DEMOUVILLE the leading Company (No. 4) found that fighting was still in progress and the village not completely cleared.
    The Commanding Officer gave orders to No. 4 Company to assist in clearing and the remainder of the Battalion to withdraw from DEMOUVILLE and dig in to the North.
    No. 4 Company and part of Battalion H.Q. had some difficulty in getting out of DEMOUVILLE which was shelled at this moment, and the Second-in-Command Major STEWART BROWN was injured.
    1600 hours
    Information received that CAGNY is surrounded by the Armoured Brigade, and the Battalion is to proceed with all speed to carry out the orders originally given and to take over CAGNY.
    1900 hours
    Battalion reported in position.
    The Battalion layout around CAGNY is as follows:-
    No. 1 Company blocks the road from CAEN and the ORCHARD in the area 105644;
    No. 2 Company is in the are of 118644;
    No. 3 Company blocks the PARIS road at 113638;
    No. 4 Company is counter-attack Company in WOODS at 114646.
    Support Arms - 1 Troop of 17-pounders from 21st Anti-Tank are in position firing to the East of CAGNY and one troop are in position firing to the West.
    6-pounders Anti-Tank Platoon - 1 Section to No.s 1, 2, and 3 Companies.
    Artillery S.O.S. WOOD 108632.
    2300 hours
    Patrols sent out report own troops at 123654, but EMIEVILLE 1364 unoccupied.

    1944 July 19
    0700 hours
    Enemy reported forming up to counter-attack in the area Sout of LA POIRIER 1063.
    Artillery fire was put down and no further trouble occurred.
    1000 hours
    Tanks reported in WOODS at 128645.
    One of our own tanks was knocked out from here and the forward Platoons of No. 2 Company are shot at at intervals from here so that all movement by day is difficult.
    We have brought down Artillery fire by the enemy are very persistent and this is almost certainly an enemy locality with Anti-Tank guns, and not roving tanks as reported.
    1100 hours
    Enemy movement in LA HOGUE 0960.
    Artillery fire brought down with good effect.
    1200 hours
    No. 3 Company are periodically fired on from the houses outside FRENOUVILLE 1162 and a pair of Battalion snipers have been sent to them to reply.
    1300 hours
    No. 4 Company move one Platoon into the WOOD at 106637 to act as a Standing Patrol.
    1400 hours
    3rd [corrected from original which states 1st] Battalion IRISH GUARDS are moving back from the area North of FRENOUVILLE and will form a Battalion position around No. 2 Company area.
    No. 2 Company will then move into reserve in the area now occupied by the 1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS 105646.
    1500 hours
    1st Battalion WELSH GUARDS make a successful attack on LE POIRIER, which was reported to be held by only 8 enemy and an Anti-Tank gun.
    1600 hours
    Commanding Officer to Brigade H.Q.
    The Battalion is to attack FRENOUVILLE 1162 at first light tomorrow.
    The attack is to be supported by:-
    2 Field and 2 Medium Regiment Artillery
    1 Squadron AVREs
    1 Troop tanks 1st Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS
    2 Battery M10s 21st Anti-Tank
    Platoon M.M.G.s
    2000 hours
    After a Recce with Company Commanders and the ‘O’ Group, the Commanding Officer gave out orders in the WOOD at 107637.
    Enemy: All that is known is that we have been fired on during the day from FRENOUVILLE and the WOODS to the North.
    It is not known how strongly the position is held.
    Own troops: The 1st Battalion WELSH GAURDS hold LE POIRIER to our Left and a Troop of tanks from 1st Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS will shoot in the attack from the WOOD at 108130.
    Intention: 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS will attack and capture FRENOUVILLE.
    Method: Start Line Front edge of WOOD 107637.
    Inter Company boundary line of hedge 107637 to CHURCH at 116630.
    Right: No. 1 Company will capture and clear village to Road running South East from the CHURCH and the RAILWAY LINE.
    Left: No. 2 Company will capture and clear the BUILDINGS on the road into FRENOUVILLE at 115133 and up to and inclusive the CROSSROADS at 120634.
    On the success signal No. 3 Company goes forward through No. 1 Company and exploits forward to the ORCHARDS at 116622.
    No. 4 Company goes through No. 2 Company clear the front edge of FRENOUVILLE and consolidates astride the railway at 117627.
    The 2 Field Regiments will fire concentration on the objectives in FRENOUVILLE from H to H plus 14.
    The Medium Regiments on the forward objectives from H to H plus 10.
    4.2 Mortars fire on the CROSSROADS and ORCHARD at 120633.
    3” Mortars fire on the WOODS to the North.
    M.M.G.s and Carrier Platoon will shoot in the attack from the Right flank.
    1 Battery S.P. M.10s to follow attack along Right flank and 1 Battery S.P. to come into position to the North East on arrival.
    2 Troops of 17-pounders and Battalion 6-pounders will take over on consolidation.
    2 Troops AVRE’s will move to 115632 to be available on call when leading Companies have captured objectives.
    Adm - Breakfasts 0400 hours.
    Inter Comm. Rear Battalion H.Q. will be in the WOOD on the Start Line and then a Command Post will advance to No. 1 Company will advance to No. 1 Company area.
    2200 hours
    Battalion positions taken over by 1st Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS, and Battalion concentrated in area of No. 2 Company 104646.
    During the operation 72 Prisoners of War have passed through our hands, mostly from 16 G.A.F. Division and 21 Panzer Division with a few from 1 SS Division.
    In the Battalion area 12 Nebelwerfers, 6 Anti-Tank guns, 3 SP guns, and a number of burnt out vehicles were found abandoned.

    1944 July 20
    Also see News Sheet

    1944 July 21
    0445 hours
    Battalion moved off to F.U.P.
    0545 hours
    Leading Companies crossed the Start Line.
    0615 hours
    Leading Companies report only a very slight resistance and objectives captured.
    Follow up Companies ordered to advance.
    0700 hours
    Battalion in position, except for No. 3 Company who have had some difficulty in getting into their orchard and are under fire from the tip of it and the ground around 115617.
    0800 hours
    2 SP Anti-Tank guns knocked out by tanks reported in the area 125623.
    1400 hours
    The Battalion is by now firmly dug in with Companies in the following areas:-
    No. 1 Company in reserve behind FRENOUVILLE 114632.
    No. 2 Company astride the road and in the forward edge of the ORCHARD at 120633.
    No. 3 Company in the ORCHARD and to the Left of it around 117622.
    No. 4 Company astride the RAILWAY at 118627 and in the BUILDINGS to the North.
    Artillery D.F. tasks:-
    134 ORCHARD at 126630
    135 Bend in TRACK at 126625
    133 (SOS) forward edge of WOOD 123617
    Mortars on North edge of WOOD 123636, RAILWAY at 124636.
    Anti-Tank guns: 17-pounder firing North and 17-pounder firing South from area of No. 1 Company.
    Both Batteries of S.P. have withdrawn.
    M.M.G. Platoon covering Right flank.
    Command Post 113632.
    Rear Battalion H.Q. and Regimental Aid Post back on the Start Line.
    2200 hours
    Civilians from the village report that all but about 20 of the enemy withdrew the day before the attack.
    About four were shot during the clearing up stages and were found to be from 12 S.S. Division.
    Since then the enemy have been fairly active.
    About a Company are dug in at 117618 and in the WOOD 123618.
    Another Company seems to be along the hedge at 126624 and down the road to the ORCHARDS at 125630.
    Leading Platoons of both No.s 2 and 3 Companies find it difficult to move in daylight.
    An 88mm covers all the main road from a position at 123628 and there is another at 128625 that shoots High Explosive at our CHURCH TOWER and anything else visible.
    Reports of tanks are now nearly all reduced to probable S.P. Anti-Tank and S.P. Infantry guns.
    Shelling has been quite heavy at times and comes down almost anywhere but happily most of it on the village.
    There is some fear that Battalion H.Q. is overlooked. (In fact it is, but they do not seem to shell it more than anywhere els, and as digging in has been very difficult owing to the rocky ground it is not worth moving)
    Persistent shots and reports of Snipers from the area of the CHATEAU 113628 have given trouble, but searches have found nothing and it is now traced to firing at the forward Companies which comes through here.
    2200 hours
    The main road by No. 2 Company blocked by mines.

    1944 July 21
    See also News Sheet
    0530 hours
    Battalion H.Q. heavily shelled.
    Commanding Officer wounded.
    Major LUARD, M.C. took over command awaiting arrival of Major ADEANE from the A Echelon area.
    0700 hours
    Lieutenant-Colonel ADEANE took over command of the Battalion.
    0800 hours
    A Platoon of No. 1 Company has been moved to the ROAD and TRACK JUNCTION at 113624 to protect our Right flank.
    1100 hours
    Commanding Officer of the relieving SEAFORTHs Battalion (51 Division) arrived to recce area.
    1500 hours
    Quite a number of enemy gun positions have been located and counter fire by our own artillery has had a chastening effect and made things much quieter.
    1600 hours
    Commanding Officer to Brigade H.Q.
    Through out the day there has been very heavy rain and the take over is now impossible tonight, owing to the state of the roads.
    2300 hours
    Patrol sent to 127622 reports enemy still in occupation.

    1944 July 22
    See also News Sheet
    During the morning arrangements were made for the take over by the SEAFORTHs Battalion.
    1200 hours
    Report received from Corps H.Q. expected enemy counter attack today.
    2300 hours
    First relieving Company arrived.
    The Battalion transport has already moved by road to a rest area, by GIBBERVILLE at 0968.

    1944 July 23
    See also News Sheet
    0200 hours
    Relief complete except for Anti-Tank guns which cannot get up yet.
    0600 hours
    Battalion complete (excluding Anti-Tank Platoon) in new area.
    Most of the Battalion is very short of rest owing to our close proximity to the enemy, the difficulties brought on by the heavy rain and mud.
    Today’s programme is confined to sleep, washing, vehicles maintenance and re-organisation necessitated by casualties which since the start of the operation come to 8 Officers and 263 Other Ranks.
    2100 hours
    Commanding Officer to Brigade H.Q.
    Preliminary Conference on Operation SPRING due to start on Tuesday morning.

    1944 July 24
    See also News Sheet
    Commanding Officer gave out preliminary orders for Operation SPRING.
    At 0300 hours tomorrow, Canadian Corps captures objectives:-
    Phase 2. 2 Canadian Division captures FOENENAY LE MARMION 1358 and ROCUANCOURT 1558.
    Phase 3. 3 Canadian Division captures LA HOGUE 1960 and GARQUELLES SEQUEVILLE 18558 and 7th Armoured Division goes through to LA BRUYERE 1856.
    Phase 4. GUARDS ARMOURED DIVISION exploits through to the WOODED AREA 2159.
    The Battalion expect to move at 0530 hours tomorrow to a forward Concentration Area South East of IFS 1463, where detailed orders for the exploitation phase will be given out.

    1944 July 25
    0600 hours The Battalion is at 2 hours notice to move to the advanced Concentration Area at IFS as from 0800 hours.
    1200 hours
    Phase 1 of Operation SPRING reported complete.
    2000 hours
    Attack has met with very severe resistance and the Canadians have had to withdraw from TILLY LE COMPAGNE and from MAY SURE ORNE.
    VERRIERS is being strongly counter attacked.

    1944 July 26
    See also News Sheet
    It is now unlikely that the Division will take any further part in the operation unless there is a successful enemy counter-attack.
    The Battalion area is subjected to occasional shell fire and air raids are a nightly feature.
    The vehicles are being dug in and a bulldozer has been obtained to help with the work.

    1944 July 27
    See also News Sheet
    0200 hours
    Anti-Personnel bombs were dropped in the Battalion area causing nine casualties.
    1200 hours
    The Battalion is now at four hours’ notice.
    1600 hours
    A rest area not overlooked by the enemy has been found near BENOUVILLE at 088745 and if permission is granted by higher authority it is hoped that the Battalion will move in there tomorrow.
    2000 hours
    Permission to move has not been granted, as it is thought that our move being visible to the enemy might be interpreted as a move to the American Sector, and result in a reciprocal move by some of the enemy Panzer Divisions.

    1944 July 28
    See also News Sheet

    1944 July 29
    See also News Sheet
    1900 hours
    'O’ Group at Brigade H.Q.
    8 CORPS is being reformed with 11th ARMOURED DIVISION, GUARDS ARMOURED DIVISION, 15th S. DIVISION, and 6th GUARDS TANK BRIGADE in order to carry out an Operation called BLUE COAT in conjunction with 30 CORPS.
    The object of this Operation is to seize the high ground around LE BENY BOCAGE 6743 in order to prevent the Germans seizing it for use as a pivot from which to counter attack the American advance.
    The Operation starts tomorrow at dawn with 8 CORPS opening objective SEPTVENTS 6958.
    GUARDS ARMOURED DIVISION is Corps reserve and tomorrow the Brigade moves to a Concentration Area near ST MARTIN LES ENTREES.
    The Battalion will move into exactly the same area as we occupied before Operation GOODWOOD.

    1944 July 30
    0755 hours
    Battalion passed the Brigade S.P. on TAY BRIDGE at 107730, and thence via ANISY 9976, SECQUEVILLE EN BESSIN 9275, and RUCQUEVILLE 8578 to the Battalion area North of ST MARTIN LES ENTREES 8279.
    1900 hours
    Representative sent to 8 CORPS H.Q. to receive orders for a future Harbour area.
    Battalion warned to be ready to move tonight.
    1700 hours
    The Battalion to come under command of 5 Brigade
    2200 hours
    Commanding Officer went to Conference at Brigade H.Q.
    5th BRIGADE less 1st Armoured Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS and with 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS under command is to move tonight from ST MARTIN LES ENTREES 8278 to a Concentration Area at LE VIVIER 7271, North East of ST. LO.
    The Battalion is at the tail of the column and will be moving off at about 0300 hours.
    2300 hours
    Commanding Officer to tactical H.Q. of 5th BRIGADE which is at NORON 7474.
    Th Brigadier expects to act tomorrow along one of the following lines:-
    1. If the Brigade has to fight its way down to VASSEY, 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS will lead with an advance guard of a Company and a Squadron of tanks, and then the remainder of the Battalion will be on call on the remaining Squadrons of an Armoured Battalion.
    2. If the enemy counter our advance by sending in an armoured counter attack from the AUNAY SUR ODON area it may be necessary to bar his advance by forming a pivot on the flank of our advance in the VILLERS BOCAGE area.
    The armour would then lead the Brigade up on the pivot position.
    3. If a complete breakthrough is achieved then the Motor Battalion will lead, making all possible speed for CONDE SUR NOIREAU.

    1944 July 31
    0800 hours
    Battalion arrived in area and ate breakfasts.
    0915 hours
    Battalion moved on to an area just North of CAUMONT at 719611.
    We are at one hour’s notice to move from here.
    1545 hours
    'O’ Group at Brigade H.Q.
    The Brigade is to advance on two Battle Groups, the first consisting of 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS with 2nd Armoured Battalion IRISH GUARDS in support, and the second of 1st Motor Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS with 2nd Armoured Battalion GRENADIER GUARDS in support.
    Battle Group No. 1 is to be South of CAUMONT by 1700 hours.
    Our forward troops have reached the line of the river South of ST. MARTIN DES BESACES 6748 and the BOIS DU HOMMES.
    The objective of the Battle Group is the high ground above LE BENY BOCAGE Point 266 at 6942 and Point 279 at 7242.
    The enemy are holding Point 238, the hill opposite ST MARTIN DES BESACES.
    1645 hours
    The Commanding Officer gave out orders:-
    The Battalion advance to the BENY BOCAGE feature is to be made in four stages:
    1. No. 4 Company goes ahead to area 6852, behind the high ST MARTIN DES BESACES and protects the Battalion debussing area.
    2. Two Sections of Carriers will go on up to the Point 238 feature at 6848 and protect the Battalion as it goes along the road.
    They will later hand over this position to two Squadrons of tanks.
    3. The Battalion will occupy ST. PIERRE TARENTAINT 7045 as a firm base from which to attack the BENY BOCAGE feature.
    4. The attack on the BENY BOCAGE feature.
    The Order of March is as follows:-
    No. 4 Company Group (i.e. Section Carriers, Section 6-pounders, Detachment 3” Mortars);
    2 Troops of 3 Squadron 2nd Armoured Battalion IRISH GUARDS under command,
    ROYAL ENGINEERS Recce Party;
    No. 3 Company Group
    3 Squadron less 2 tanks
    M.M.G. Platoon;
    Joint Battalion H.Q.s;
    Support Company;
    2 Squadrdon;
    1 Squadron (less two troops)
    No. 2 Company ;
    No. 1 Company Group (made up like No. 4 Company)
    1700 hours
    Head of column left CAUMONT
    1900 hours
    Head of column arrived debussing area.
    The journey was delayed by congestion on the roads, and the very bad dust clouds raised by the tanks.
    2000 hours
    On contracting the leading troops of 15th S. DIVISION holding the ground opposite Point 238 we were informed that Point 238 was strongly held and the Commanding Officer decided that a Battalion attack would be necessary and gave out orders.
    Intention: 5th Battalion COLDSTREAM GUARDS will attack and capture Point 238 supported by 2nd Armoured Battalion IRISH GUARDS.
    Method: On the Left No. 2 Company will seize the crossing of the river at 675495 and the Right, No. 1 Company will establish themselves South of Point 192 672488.
    On capture of these objectives No. 4 Company will go through to Point 238 685482 and No. 3 Company will go to the ROAD JUNCTION at 675488.
    The attack will be supported by a Squadron of tanks who can shoot Companies in if necessary and the remainder of 2nd Armoured Battalion IRISH GUARDS will be prepared to follow No.s 3 and 4 Companies up into their objectives.
    Artillery fire can be called down beyond the objectives if necessary.
    It is not possible to have H HOUR before 2130 hours owing to transport of 11th Armoured Division which is blocking the route through ST. MARTIN DES BESACES.
    2130 hours
    The attack went in and met with no opposition going up the hill, though a deserter from 326 Infantry Division was collected on the way up and an armoured car shot up.
    2300 hours
    Darkness came on before the consolidation was completed and as the leading Companies came up to the crest of the hill they encountered enemy opposition in very close hedged country.
    No. 3 Company were held up by Machine Gun and rifle fire from the area of an ORCHARD 674485 and the darkness having come on they finally consolidated short of their objective at about 670487.
    No. 4 Company also reported opposition and with the difficulty of finding exactly where they were in the darkness and very thick BOCAGE country they dug in short of Point 238 at 672489.
    During the night small parties of enemy attempted to infiltrate down the banked hedgerows, but were successfully stopped.
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    Aerial view Marcelet, Aug 1947


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    Aerial view Frenouville, 9 Aug 1947

    Attached Files:

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