[78][79][80], The breakout achieved, XXX Corps drove flat out for the River Seine (Operation Loopy), with 43rd (W) Division sent ahead to make an assault crossing at Vernon. 7th Somerset Light Infantry cleared the village in the dark and, with the aid of the divisional artillery, fought off a counter-attack accompanied by heavy armour (probably Jagdpanthers) that had to be stalked with PIATs. In the first phase 129th Brigade on the right, with all three battalions in line, and 130th Brigade on the left with one battalion, were to capture the hill and the road from it to Château de Fontaine. On formation, the TF contained 14 infantry divisions and 14 mounted yeomanry brigades. By now 1st Airborne had been effectively destroyed, and the only course now was to evacuate the survivors. The advance up the only road ('Club Route') was slow but on 21 September 43rd (Wessex) Division caught up with the Guards at Nijmegen. 'Thus, boldly handled, the Reconnaissance Regiment in its first battle had gained information vital to the success of Major-General Thomas's plan,' the divisional historian wrote. Although titled as a Living History Group, 43rd Recce is a Group with a more serious historical slant than most. On 6 June 1942 all reconnaissance battalions were redesignated regiments, and on 1 … The order to mobilise arrived on the evening of 4 August. On 29 June 129 Brigade advanced under fire to ford the River Odon and dug in, a German counter-attack against them in the evening being destroyed by the divisional artillery. "Corps of Royal Engineers, Volunteer Regiments". 372–413 Rgts RA at British Army 1945 on. The Regimental War Diary records that 'Great gallantry was displayed by all troops in the two aft holds' and lists 183 men of the regiment lost and about 120 others evacuated wounded. 214th Brigade relieved the exhausted troops that morning. It was formed in July 1942. When the Wessex infantry went forward they came under heavy fire and had to clear defenders from the dugouts and defensive positions of their outpost line on the forward slopes. However, shipping delays and a storm between 19 and 22 June delayed its arrival; the division finally concentrated round Bayeux on 24 June. The concealed squadrons sent back reports, but were forbidden to engage the enemy in order to hide the extent of the position. The 43rd (Wessex) Reconnaissance Regiment (The Gloucestershire Regiment) (43 Recce) was a regiment of the British Army's Reconnaissance Corps, itself part of the Royal Armoured Corps, during World War II. The first elements moved up to Brussels to protect headquarters and carry out engineering works, then the division concentrated at Diest to take part in Operation Market Garden, beginning on 17 September. 112th (Wessex) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery. It was later noted that its habitual training area round Stone Street, Kent, bore a marked resemblance to the Bocage countryside in Normandy where it would later fight. [34], 43 Recce was disbanded in 1946[35] and 5th Bn Gloucesters was reconstituted in 1947.[36]. Joslen, Lt-Col H.F. (2003) [1st pub. The opportunity came the following morning, but as soon as B squadron moved out up the steep hill with the infantry of 5th Bn Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (DCLI), a patrol of Hawker Typhoons, 'seeing the armoured cars and the infantry intermingled saw fit to intervene'. 43rd Reconnaissance Regiment, Reconnaissance Corps. Support – 8th Battalion, Middlesex Regiment (Vickers machine guns et 4.2″ Mortars) – 43rd Reconnaissance Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps. [33] The division's last significant engagement of the war was in the capture of Bremen (20–27 April 1945). 43rd (Wessex) Reconnaissance Regiment (The Gloucestershire Regiment) (43 Recce) was a regiment of the British Army's Reconnaissance Corps during World War II. On the left, 4th Somerset LI got across in the storm boats relatively easily, but found that their bridgehead was on an island, and they were still cut off from the east bank, apart from a few men who scrambled over the wreckage of the railway bridge. But many of the tanks and most of the supply vehicles got bogged down while 1st Worcesters were threading their way through Gilrath to form up for the second phase towards Tripsrath. [4][13], 43rd (Wessex) Division was reformed in 1920 and became part of the Territorial Army, which replaced the TF. During the night 5th Dorsets and the divisional engineers ferried a few hundred Poles across the Nederrijn in assault boats to reinforce 1st Airborne Division's shrinking perimeter. The division's infantry battalions (without their brigade headquarters) and artillery brigades embarked at Southampton on 8 October and were convoyed to Bombay, disembarking on 9 November. The total establishment was 41 officers and 755 other ranks. Then, while 129th Brigade formed a secure south-west flank, 130th Brigade and Churchill Crocodile flamethrowing tanks from 79th Armoured Division were to advance from Château de Fontaine to capture Eterville and Maltot and the high ground to the south-east. But 129th Brigade was slowed in its advance on Hill 112 itself, suffering heavy casualties on the open slopes, and then running into the recently-arrived Tiger I tanks of 102nd SS Heavy Panzer Battalion, which the Churchills and corps anti-tank guns of 86th (Devon) Anti-Tank Regiment, Royal Artillery, struggled to deal with. As fog descended on the hill, the 4th Wiltshires and the rest of A and B Sqns of the Hussars picked their way up the almost undefended track, followed by 4th Somerset LI. By daybreak the summit was firmly held, despite heavy German bombardment, and 5th Wiltshires and C Sqn still held the crossroads below. Both sides remained dug in on the slopes, with the hilltop left in No man's land. The journey took only 30 minutes, but the road behind the column was cut by German tanks that had to be hunted down and destroyed before support could be brought up. For example, the 43rd Battalion, Reconnaissance Corps (based on the 5th Battalion, the Gloucestershire Regiment) was the divisional reconnaissance battalion of the 43rd (Wessex) Infantry Division. [14][15], By early 1915 the need was growing for troops to be sent to various theatres of war, and the first drafts and formed units from the 1st Wessex Division began to go on active service, particularly to the Mesopotamian Front. [17], 43 Recce was not fully up to strength until the end of July 1944. *FREE* shipping on eligible orders. The Roll of Honour is in the War Memorial Chapel in Salisbury Cathedral.[159]. 7th Army Troops Royal Engineers had also arrived to begin a Class 40 Bailey Bridge. 94th (Queen’s Own Dorset Yeomanry) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery. [111] Nevertheless, Maj-Gen Thomas replaced the commanding officer of 43rd Recce immediately after the battle. Formerly part of 43 Wessex Brigade 43 Wessex Signal Regiment was a Territorial Army TA unit of the British Army s Royal Corps of Signals from 1920. The following month it was transferred to 43rd (Wessex) Division and renumbered accordingly the next January. Its leading brigade crossed the river on 25 March behind 51st (Highland) Division, which had carried the assault on the night of 23/24 March. I was in the 43rd Wessex Infantry Reconnaissance Corps. [21][55][56], After a short rest 43rd (Wessex) Division moved to XXX Corps to launch an attack towards the dominating height of Mont Pinçon as part of Operation Bluecoat. Hostilities ended on 5 May after the German surrender at Lüneburg Heath. Royal Wessex Yeomanry RWxY is a Reserve armoured regiment of the British Army Reserve consisting of five squadrons. [132], 128th Infantry Brigade (left 6 June 1942)[34], 25th Tank Brigade (from 1 June 1942, left 2 September 1942)[35], 34th Tank Brigade (from 3 September 1942, left 10 September 1943)[36], 214th Infantry Brigade (from 5 September 1943)[137], The TA was reconstituted from 1 January 1947 and its units and formations including 43rd (Wessex) Infantry Division were reformed. Finally, Sir Richard Onslow (formerly of the Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry) presented Rough Tor on Bodmin Moor to the National Trust as a memorial. On the right, 5th Wiltshires began crossing in eight storm boats manned by 15th (Kent) GHQTRE, but they grounded before reaching the far side, and were raked by machine gun fire. The tragic history of the 43rd Recce on D-Day is from Wikipedia: "By the time of D-Day in June 1944, all reconnaissance or "recce" regiments were organised into a headquarters squadron and three reconnaissance squadrons. [17][19][20][21] When the Battle of France was lost and the BEF was being evacuated from Dunkirk, 43rd (W) Division was one of the few reasonably well-equipped formations left in Home Forces to counter a German invasion of the United Kingdom. Critics of his training methods regarded 43rd (Wessex) Division as 'the most over-exercised in the Army'. The first convoy, Group One, consisted of nearly 1500 vehicles of 129th Brigade with its usual proportion of divisional artillery, engineers and support services, reinforced by 1st Worcesters. 1st Worcesters failed to get over the broken road bridge into the village of Vernonnet, which was strongly held. Starting from St Jean le Blanc, the armoured cars and half-tracks probed south, seizing bridges, lifting mines, driving through strongly-held villages firing their Besa machine guns, clashing with German self-propelled guns and taking prisoners. Golden Wyvern on a blue square as its formation sign in 1935. 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