WW II, a British focus  



War Diaries

The Royal Tank Regiment
August 1939 To March 1946

  • May 1941
  • October 1941
  • November 1941
  • December 1941
  • September 1942
Royal Tank Regiment Badge

January 1940 CO: Lt Col CGD Thrupp
Jan 40 6th Royal Tank Regiment
6/1/40 Cairo
Eight more Cruiser tanks drawn from RAOC these bringing the Regt up to full establishment of Cruiser tanks (23). The Medium tanks still held by the Regt were not returned to RAOC as they are being retained in order to give an ‘I’ tank demonstration on 18th January.
8/1/40 Two New Zealand officers – Lt LB Ballantyne and 2Lt PS Crisp and 5 ORs arrived for a month attachment to the Regt.
14/1/40 The regt was ordered to give an I Tank demonstration with Medium tanks. In order to provide a complete Company six Medium tanks were drawn from RAOC which provided a total of 18, giving 2 spares. A ‘Demonstration Company’ was formed under Capt CIA Jackson and went out to MENA prepared to bivouac and practise until the actual demonstration on 17th January.
15/1/40 Tprs A Innes and C Smith reported missing proceeding from Demo camp six miles from Mena. They were proceeding to Cairo.
18/1/40 Demonstration took place satisfactorily having been postponed on the 17th owing to sandstorm. 75 vehicles from various units in Armd Div and RAF co-operating in search for Tprs Innes and Smith.
19/1/40 Tprs Innes and Smith found by RAF at Moghra.
20/1/40 Draft of 4 officers and 50 ORs left for UK. These were trained personnel being sent home as instructors and included NCOs.
23/1/40 Lt JH Gabe and 2Lt WEJ Harrison plus 23 ORs joined the Regt from UK via RAC Depot. All of the ORs were originally Territorial Army personnel.
24 – 27 Armd Div Skeleton Exercise – personnel taking part were RHQ and sufficient vehicles and personnel to make the party self-contained for 4 days.
31/1/40 Regt moved to assembly area near Mena for Armd Div full scale exercise.

February 1940 CO: Lt Col CGD Thrupp
Feb 40 6th Royal Tank Regiment
1 -3 Egypt
Armd Div exercise in the desert West of the Pyramids. ‘A’ vehicles averaged 280 miles during the exercise.
5/2/40 Sqn training commenced.
8/2/40 Regt paraded at full strength at ALMAZA Aerodrome, Helipolis and was inspected with some other units of 7th Armd Div and Egyptian Army by General Weygand, C in C French Troops in Syria.
12/2/40 Capt Muhsen Ibrahim Ali and Capt Zakama Mohamed el Wardani, Egyptian Royal Engineers from the Egyptian Staff College were attached to the Regt to study general organisation and routine of a British Tank Unit until 24/2/40.
14/2/40 2Lt ELS Gjemre and 23 ORs arrived from UK as replacements.
16/2/40 B Sqn gave their second ‘I’ tank demonstration with Medium tanks to the students of the Middle East Tactical School.
19/2/40 Lts AH Wynard, EW Kerr, HB Capamgian and three ORs of the 2nd Div Cavalry Regt, New Zealand Expeditionary Force attached for a fortnight’s course on the Light tank Mk VI.
23/2/40 Major CIA Jackson, Lts FD Pile and FD Gates and a draft of 28 ORs posted to the UK.
25/2/40 2Lts CP Beecroft, TJ Troward, REM Milner and 28 ORs arrived from UK as replacements.
26/2/40 HAB Gunnery Camp at 33 Kilo on Cairo – Suez road opened.

March 1940 to August 1940 Missing

September 1940 CO: Lt Col LS Harland MC
Sep 40 6th Royal Tank Regiment
3/9/40 Div Recce and tracking party, accompanied by 2Lt E Delson
4 – 8 Individual training and tank overhauls.
9/9/40 Major-General m O’Moore Croagh MC, Commander 7th Armd Div, visited the Regt.
B Sqn ordered to move to unknown destination. At 1930 hrs, under command Major GJ Stephens, the Sqn left camp, complete with B vehicles.
10/9/40 B Sqn entrained at GERAWLA. Heavy night bombing of MERSA MATRUH. Italians reported to be dropping delayed action bombs, resembling thermos flasks in appearance.
11/9/40 Notification to the effect that Major LS Harland MC had been promoted acting Lt Col (Wef 13 Aug 1940) was published in General Orders, Middle East, List No 14 dated 7th Sep 1940.
14/9/40 The Italians crossed the Egyptian frontier and entered SALUM. The Regt was placed at 8 hours notice.
15/9/40 The Regt was ordered to move at 0600 hrs the following morning.
16/9/40 The 6th RTR less A & B Sqns moved at 0600 hrs, HQ tanks leading followed by B Echelon and C Sqn to leaguer at 685317 North of BIR MENAYIS.
17/9/40 At 2215 hrs the Regt moved to area 710328. One lorry was damaged and evacuated. Owing to the rapid Italian advance through SALUM and BUQ BUQ anxiety was felt for Capt WC Smith (unit QME) and 2Lt Parker, who had returned to MAATEN FORELK to salvage a Cruiser tank.
18/9/40 At dawn B Echelon moved to 717327 under HQ 4th Armd Bde control.
19/9/40 Enemy forces reached SIDI BARRANI. A Sqn under command of Capt WI Miller arrived from Abbassia and bivouacked with the Regt at about 2000 hrs. 2 Leylands, 7 15cwt trucks and one watercart arrived to supplement depleted transport.Three Cruiser A9s arrived, two for C Sqn and one for RHQ.
20/9/40 Recce carried out in local area.At 1000 hrs MERSA MATRUH heavily bombed by 33 bombers, escorted by 27 fighters. AA fire was strong.Water ration, one gallon per man per day. Party of NCOs assisted in the laying of a minefield forward of the Heavy Bde area.
22/9/40 MATRUH very heavily bombed during the morning and again during the night. A Special Order of the Day was issued by Maj-General M O’Moore Creagh.
23/9/40 CO and Major TCA Clarke visited 7th Hussars patrols West of the MATRUH – SIWA road.
24/9/40 Local recce continued and possible positions from which the enemy could be harassed and delayed, carefully examined.
25/9/40 At 1400 hrs the Regt moved North on exercise, and returned to leaguer two hours later.The Corps Commander General O’Conner drove into a minefield, two men were taken to hospital.
26/9/40 A Sqn sent 6 light tanks to mount guard either side of the minefield.Officers of 2nd RTR visited the Regt and were shown round the area by the CO. they included Lt Col AC Harcourt DSO MC,Major Woolcombe, Major Carlton, Major Brown & 2Lt Amery.
27/9/40 2Lt E Delsen proceeded to HQ 4th Armd Bde as Int Officer, vice Capt R Leakey. 2Lt ELS Gjemre MC was posted to RHQ as Int Officer vice 2Lt Delsen.
29/9/40 The CO, 2i/c and Int Officer recced the Wadi NAGHAMISH 734339 and the defences thereof.
30/9/40 C Sqn with 6 light tanks relieved A Sqn’s 6 light tanks which were on duty at the minefield.

The Divisional Commander would like it impressed on all ranks that the operations likely to occur in the next few weeks may well have a decisive influence on the War in the Mediterranean.

The spirit and work of the Division during the past four months has been splendid. Experience has shown that we are undoubtedly superior to the enemy in every way except perhaps temporarily as regards quantity of equipment. It is therefore imperative that the strictest attention is paid to the care and maintenance of the machine. This must be the individual concern of all ranks.

For the rest we are all of us, whether we know it or not, fighting for the principles of liberty, justice and honour and last but by no means least to kill Italians.

Let us go forward with confidence and good courage to that task.

Roll of Officers and WOs as at 30th Sept 1940.

Lt Col LS Harland MC CO
Major GJN Culverwell 2i/c LOB
Major TCA Clarke Battle 2i/c
Major GJ Dean Sqn Commander
Major JG Stephens Sqn Commander
Major HWH Mills RTA
Capt WI Miller Sqn Commander
Capt RGS Saunders Adjutant
Capt A Sutherland MBE QM
Capt EJA Pettman  
Capt CG Hulton  
Capt FCKM Laing  
Capt JD Aldridge  
Lt JH Pink  
Lt GJ Callan  
Lt E Symcox  
2Lt RS Kemp  
2Lt REM Milner  
2Lt TJ Troward  
2Lt FA Wild  
2Lt JEG Permay  
2Lt SW Porter  
2Lt ELS Gjemre RIO
2Lt AH Crickmay  
2Lt JR Cruttwell  
2Lt HW Parker  
2Lt E Delsen  
2Lt JVC Mason  
2Lt WEJ Harrison  
2Lt SDG Longworth  
2Lt PJ Craen  

Officer Attached

Capt JHB Livingston Medical Officer
Capt WC Smith OME. I/c LAD
2Lt TH Fletcher R Signals

RSM (WO1) C McComb
RQMS (WO2) R Merrill
SSM (WO2) W Rivers
SSM (WO2) D Wright
QMS (WO2) C Dyson
MQMS (WO2) H Fawcett

October 1940 CO: Lt Col LS Harland MC
Oct 40 6th Royal Tank Regiment
1/10/40 The Adjt returned from leave in Cairo.
2/10/40 C Sqn relieved A Sqn on duty at the minefield.
3/10/40 Major TCA Clarke left at 1645 hrs for duty in Cairo.
4/10/40 During the night 3/4th, a camel, which had strayed on the minefield was presented with a burst of .303 by one of C Sqn light tanks. Chateau Briand was subsequently enjoyed.
11/10/40 Major Clarke returned from Cairo.
15/10/40 Two Troops of Cruiser tanks from C Sqn carried out a VMG shoot into the major escarpment.
16/10/40 Two Troops from A Sqn repeated the shoot carried out by C Sqn.
CO left for Cairo on leave.
21/10/40 Regt visited by the Secretary of State for War, the Rt Hon Anthony Eden.
Two troops of light tanks of 3rd Hussars, attached 2nd RTR, took over minefield duty from A Sqn.
22/10/40 A demonstration of an attack on Bofors anti-tank guns of M Bty with 4th RHA was given by two troops of A13 Cruiser tanks of 2nd RTR. The speed of these tanks was most impressive.
23/10/40 A night scheme was carried out by one Cruiser tank and two light tanks of HQ Sqn. Personnel of C sqn attempted to pierce a line one mile in length held by these three tanks. The attacking vehicle lost direction and failed to penetrate the line, but penetration by personnel on foot was successful. There was no moon. Visibility otherwise normal.
25/10/40 A smoke screen demo was carried out by a HQ light tank. The tank advanced upon a trunk representing an enemy anti-tank gun. It was noted that the screen was not very effective – probably owing to the wind being somewhat fresh.
26/10/40 C sqn took over the care of the minefield from 3rd Hussars.
27/10/40 2Lt ELS Gjemre MC proceeded on leave to Cairo. 2Lt SDG Longworth took over his duties. The CO and the RIO proceeded to a smoke demo in a bad dust storm. On arriving at the specified location they found it had been cancelled much to their regret. The storm continued all day until tea-time fraying everyone’s tempers.
28/10/40 A Sqn light tanks set off to relieve C Sqn on the minefield holding a small scheme on the way, C Sqn also held a small scheme on the way back.
30/10/40 Major TCA Clarke and 2Lt JR Cruttwell proceeded to RAC Base Depot on duty.
31/10/40 About 1300 hrs two flights of enemy aircraft approached from the West at a height of about 10,000 feet. Four bombs dropped on the NE corner of the Bde leaguer. The planes then turned North and circled over MATRUH. They were engaged by our fighters and at least three planes were seen to fall.

November 1940 CO: Lt Col LS Harland MC
Nov 40 6th Royal Tank Regiment
2/11/40 It was confirmed today that as a result of the air battle in the MATRUH area on the 31st October, six Savoia bombers were shot down, also three CR45 fighters. We lost one Hurricane; also one Gladiator which chased the Italian planes out to sea and did not return; and two Gladiators which collided in mid-air. The pilots of the two colliding Gladiators bailed out successfully. The pilots of the other Gladiator and Hurricane were lost.
5/11/40 The CO, OCs A & C Sqns, the Adjt and the RIO attended a demo of night leaguering by 2nd RTR. Tanks used were one sqn of A13 Cruisers, one sqn of A10 Cruisers and one sqn of light tanks. Location SIDI OMAR.
8/11/40 Capt A Sutherland MBE was struck off strength on posting to HQ Suez Canal Area to take over the duties of Camp Commandant.
9/11/40 RHQ, A & C Sqns, BI and BII Echelons practised night leaguering.
10/11/40 Matins were held in the lines of HQ 4th Armd Bde by Capt Rogers CF.
14/11/40 A Gladiator made a forced landing on the major escarpment in the area between the Siwa road and MINQUAR SIDI HAMZA. A patrol of vehicles of HQ 4th Armd Bde located the aircraft shortly before midnight. The pilot was unhurt, but as he only wore shorts and a shirt, found conditions considerably ‘brass monkey’, more especially as he had been visiting BIR SOFAFI where his reception was warm. Damage to the under-carriage included punctured tyres.
15/11/40 A TEWT was carried out by 4th Armd Bde. Syndicates were composed of representatives from the following:-
4th Armd Bde 6th RTR    2nd RTR
7th Queens Own Hussars 3rd RHA    4th RHA
3rd Kings Own Hussars  
17/11/40 Commander of 4th Armd Bde Brigadier JAL Caunter MC addressed the Regt on future policy.
18/11/40 The 4th Armd Bde was visited by the C in C General Sir Archibald P Wavell KCB, CMG, MC.
20/11/40 Cambrai Day was celebrated. After late reveille, tug-of-war and .22 rifle competitions were run during the morning. The tug-of-war was won by C Sqn with HQ as runners-up. The rifle competition was also won by C Sqn with HQ in second place. Apart from the competition, the best shooting of the day was performed by the Brigade Commander, Brigadier JAL Caunter MC and the Staff Captain, Capt Wilfred Rice.
A Cambrai Tea was eaten at 1630 hrs. The fare included fresh butter, eggs, fruit and iced plum cake. At 1800 hrs a concert was held and local talent provided amusing entertainment. Ale flowed freely and a good time was had by all. Copy of concert programme attached.
21/11/40 The Adjt and RIO visited the minefield at 1500 hrs and observed that the mines were in process of being removed by the Sappers.
23/11/40 A/Capt Stafford Gjemre handed over his duties as RIO to 2Lt DF Burns on being posted to GHQ ME Movements.
25/11/40 A scheme was demonstrated by 2nd RTR tanks in conjunction with F Bty 3rd RHA, when 25pdrs laid a smoke screen prior to the tanks attacking the enemy gun emplacements. Major TCA Clarke, acting CO, and other officers of the Regt witnessed the scheme.
27/11/40 2Lt DW Dunstone was evacuated sick suffering from dysentery.
28/11/40 Major HWH Mills was evacuated sick suffering from catarrhal jaundice.
Capt RD Scale and 2Lt WEJ Harrison joined the Regt from RAC Base Depot.
30/11/40 Lt-General RN O’Connor CB DSO MC, GOC Commanding Western Desert Force, accompanied by Brigadier JAL Caunter MC, Acting Divisional Commander and Colonel HL Burks, Acting Brigadier 4th Armd Bde, visited the Regt. They visited C Sqn under command of Major GJ Dean. The Bren gun as carried and fired in a light tank was demonstrated by the Adjt, Capt RGS Saunders.
Appendix A – Cambrai Day Concert Programme. November 1940

A grand concert to be held on the Harland Estate Arena (Mussolini permitting) under the auspices of everybody that matters (and the watchful eye of AA sentries)

PRODUCED BY Spitt and Gobb (The Phlegmish Comedians)
EFFECTS NOT KNOWN Cause also obscure
SEATING BY The Shell Company
PROPERTIES Mostly by The King of England (unknown to him)
REFRESHMENTS Anybody that likes to buy them


In order to avoid accidents patrons are requested NOT to drive their tanks into the arena. Adequate parking space in the vicinity has been kindly loaned by the King of Egypt (for the duration).

  1. Tpr Holden in “A Melody” or should we say “Wrapped around a Melody”.
  2. Community Singing – Here is your chance to ease your lungs and settle yourselves in.
  3. Mouth Organ Duet – Messrs Toomer and Mayer.
  4. Round 1 of the Quartet Contest – Merry’s merry men from ‘C’ in “Over the Seas” (We might consign them there later), followed after a short interval, in order to allow you to recuperate, by A1 torturing “When Day is Done” and again by HQ1 who have omitted to tell us what they intend to rend (sorry,render).

    If we are still alive there will now be an interval of five minutes for FURIOUS DRINKING.


  5. Something really good (we hope) Capt Smith, (without his go-and-get-it lads) in a melody. Melodies seem quite the thing tonight. Give him a big hand (but empty it first).
  6. IVAN ACKEROFF HOWLAND (Russian extraction) in “Sam and his Medal”. (Young soldiers watch the technique)
  7. Round 2 of the Quartet Contest (and the final round) in the order HQ, C & A (accompanied by the Sqt- Major, off the stage, if it gets too boring.
  8. Mouth Organ solo – Toomer – without comment.
  9. Sgt Merry will warble about his Gypsy Dream Girl.
  10. Tpr Holden with his squeeze box again.
  11. Lcpl Craven with “Pennies From Heaven” (if by this time we haven’t heard from Graziani we can almost say that that will be all we get from Heaven tonight).
  12. Tpr Buckling – Rosita
  13. Community Singing (All in, no grumbling).

December 1940 CO: Lt Col LS Harland MC
Dec 40 6th Royal Tank Regiment
1/12/40 4th Armd Bde, 6th RTR included, moved West to area BIR ABU KHATTAL, the move being completed by midday.
B Echelon leaguered in area BIR SIDI ALI.
4/12/40 2Lts SP Jackson, RW Hill and BG Sebley joined from RAC Base Depot. Three light tanks Mk VIb received.
5/12/40 Lt HB Williams AEC and 2Lt RJ Setton posted to Div Reinforcement Camp as “Left-out-of-Battle”.
Lt F Fleming joined unit from RAC Base Depot and assumed duties as i/c transport.
6/12/40 Brig JAL Caunter held COs Conference at Bde HQ, CO attended.
Conference held at RHQ at 1200 hrs, Sqn commanders attended.
At 1800 hrs Operational Order No 12 was received from Bde HQ. This Unit’s Operation Order No. 2 was issued. The CO addressed other ranks.
Capt JD Aldridge rejoined the Regt from duties as Staff Captain at HQ 4th Armd Bde.
7/12/40 0700 – COs Conference, Sqn commanders attended.
Final preparations for move. Two Cruiser A10 tanks arrived, the crews having fetched them over 100 miles to join the Regt. One of the three was exchanged with Bde HQ for an A9. Exchange completed one hour before the move.
1615 – The Regt moved into position behind 7th QO Hussars. Approach march commenced. B Echelon moved with A Echelon. 2Lt Bune navigated.
Arrived leaguer area MINQUAR EL AHMA about 1230 hrs. all tanks arrived leaguer area.
8/12/40 Moved off at about 0800 hrs behind 7th Hussars. B Echelon followed. No enemy air activity seen.
At 1600 hrs arrived area ALAM EL HEILIF. About 4 miles East of here B Echelon swung off SW to leaguering area. B1 Echelon remained with A Echelon. 2Lt Bune made a recce with the RIO of 7th Hussars of the route for the final approach march in the dark to the starting point. They went as far as Pt. 184 which was the leaguering area and start point for 6th RTR.
2Lt Bune returned, and having replenished all tanks the Regt moved up the last 6 miles just as darkness fell, taking with them B1 Echelon. Cruiser tank 7211 – commanded by Sgt Vanes, broke down with clutch trouble earlier at Piccadilly. 2Lt JVC Mason’s light tank also broke down at Piccadilly with clutch trouble. They were not seen again for several days.
9 – 22 See Appendix
16/12/40 Capt EJA Pettman and 2Lt JR Cruttwell evacuated sick suffering from juandice.
24/12/40 Capt RGS Saunders proceeded to Cairo to assume Staff Appointment.
2Lt DW Dunstone rejoined from XII List.
Italian ‘Air Circus’ flew over, no bombs dropped.
Community Carol singing held in the evening. Rum ration issued by orders Commander 7th Armd Div.
25/12/40 Brigade Chaplain – Rev HW Rogers, held Holy Communion at 0700 hrs and Bde HQ and an evening service in 6th RTR lines at 1745 hrs. this service was well attended and Christmas Hymns were sung.
The ‘Air Circus’ again visited us but dropped their bombs well to the North of our area.
27/12/40 2Lt Dunstone left for Div Reinforcement Camp as ‘Left out of Battle’Capt RD Scale arrived back to unit with 3 Cruiser tanks. These tanks had been battle casualties East of SIDI BARRANI and had been repaired by the LAD under Capt WC Smith RAOC and their crews. The Air Circus again flew over and one Caproni bomber was shot down 2 miles NE of leaguer area.
29/12/40 2Lt GP Jackson, LO to 4th Armd Bde, replaced 2Lt HB Ball at Bde HQ who joined 6th RTR remained in same location.
30/12/40 At 0800 hrs warning order to move to GABR BZIN on 1st Jan under command of Support Group. 2Lt Ball was ordered to report to Support Group as LO.
31/12/40 Regt moved at 0815 hrs to 484404 and was in position at the foot of the escarpment at 1115 hrs. the Regt took over the responsibility of watching the main BARDIA – TOBRUK road from 8th King’s Royal Irish Hussars. A Sqn under Major HWH Mills took over from a Sqn of 8th Hussars a position at the foot of the Northward escarpment. In the afternoon and evening recces were made by the 2 i/c and Sqn commanders along the road and also to discover suitable ways of approach down the escarpment to the main road.
2Lt DF Bune joined a patrol of the Rifle Brigade and made a recce of the Western defences of BARDIA. He brought back some useful information and found that walking 12 miles in a pair of borrowed gym shoes two sizes too small, a different proposition to making a recce mounted in a light tank!
During the approach march the Commander 7th Armd Div stopped the CO and congratulated him upon the Regts success at SIDI BARRANI. As he off again the Commander took photographs.
Appendix A2 War Diary B Echelon 7th – 23rd December 1940

7th.     Normal replenishment was carried out and the Echelon moved forward to MINQUAR EL AHMA conforming to the Regt’s advance.

8th.     After normal replenishment B Echelon moved up 32 miles behind the Regt to the area SW of ALAM EL HEILIF. Replenishing vehicles then went forward with the tanks a further 10 miles to the area.

9th.     At 0800 hrs the replenishing vehicles reported to Bde B Echelon commander, Major GC Webb, and prepared a hot meal to take up to the tanks that night.
At 1530 hrs the Bde B Echelon moved off to the dispersal area but were forced to halt three times en route by enemy aircraft. On the third occasion 19 enemy planes were dispersed, with the loss of one, by 4 Hurricanes.
The Regts replenishment packet was then sent off, commanded by Lt F Fleming, to the forward troops, but owing to being given the wrong Map Ref, arrived very late. They provided a welcome hot meal and a further one at dawn the next day, before returning to B Echelon, with some 400 prisoners captured by the Regt.

10th.     At 2100 hrs the B1 Group, moving on a Northerly course to contact the Regt, which had moved to the area of ABUR EL SHIREISAT to co-operate in operations of the MATRUH Mobile Force, came under very heavy fire from an enemy camp (Pt 90) in the TUMMAR area, which had not been cleared up during operations of the 4th Indian Div on the previous day. The enemy opened Breda fire across the front of the column and also shelled the lorries with field guns. Unfortunately the first shell hit and set on fire a petrol lorry, which lit up the other transport, which was badly disorganised in its efforts to reach a place of safety. Four vehicles only reached the Regt, one of which carried the Echelon commander, Capt FJA Pettman and none of these carried useful replenishment. Three returned under SSM W Rivers to Bde B Echelon and others continued to arrive throughout the 11th.
Casualties to personnel were one killed, Tpr R Cole, and to vehicles, eight lost, three petrol, 2 rations, 1 ammunition, 1 water and 1 15cwt. That losses were not heavier, especially of personnel, was largly due to the work of SSM A Gray and Sgt A Carter who remained till late on that night on the scene of the shelling, working on vehicles and looking for personnel.

11th.     Replenishing during the morning was hampered by enemy air activity. This took the form of bombing and machine gunning, which caused no casualties, though 106 Bty RA nearby had some.
Hard rations had to taken up to the tanks, as the loss of containers on the previous day precluded the possibility of taking up a hot meal. On this occasion the lorries got involved in a minefield with the subsequent loss of three vehicles, and the wounding of three men. The ones of two of these were aggravated by acid from the batteries carried on the lorry getting on to them. Contact was not established with the tanks as B Echelon had been given the wrong rendezvous ALAN EL DAB.
During the day Lt EH Symcox and one OR were killed, and one OR wounded, during an air raid on Rear HQ, 4th Armd Bde.

12th.     At 1130 hrs B Echelon were rejoined by the replenishment group, less three vehicles lost on the minefield. Shortly after, Sgt A Carter brought in a water truck abandoned during the bombardment on the 10th.
At 1400 hrs HQ 4th Armd Bde cancelled replenishing as they were moving to KHREIGAT. It was then learnt that 6th RTR were now under orders of HQ 7th Armd Bde and Capt Pettman went off to their Rear HQ to discuss replenishing. There he contacted Major GJ Dean and was told that the Regt were now in the area GHOT EL SHALLUDI. He therefore gave orders to Lt Fleming to draw rations from the SIS and the whole B Echelon had rejoined the Regt by 2000 hrs.

13th.     Normal replenishing.

14th.     B2 Echelon moved up to BIR KHREIGAT to replenish. They failed to establish wireless communication with the Regt and spent the night in the area.

15th.     B Echelon returned to QARET EL HAMRA where Capt EJA Pettman was evacuated sick. Lt F Fleming spent the morning trying to get in touch with the Regt. Eventually 2Lt AH Crickmay arrived from 6th RTR and took forward necessary replenishment items.
The remainder of B Echelon moved at 1600 hrs to SIDI SULLEIMAN. During the night enemy planes dropped bombs in an area near the camp.

16th.     Replenishing was carried out by RSM C McComb but was very late owing to bombing of the RASC. Capt JD Aldridge took command of HQ Sqn.

17th.     Replenishment was carried out with Support Group.

18th.     A normal day, though on two occasions areas near B Echelon were heavily bombed.

19th.     Normal replenishing. Capt JD Aldridge sent two vehicles under the RSM to bring back rations from a deserted Italian camp. One vehicle broke down and the RSM returned empty handed except for a quantity of sherry.

20th.     Normal day.

21st.     normal replenishing. The RSM was more successful on this occasion in getting rations from the Italian camp, but failed to recover the lorry which had broken down. As this was a RASC vehicle and as its driver had been left with it, it was assumed to have rejoined its own unit.

22nd.     Capt WI Miller took over command of HQ Sqn. The Regt replenished under 4th Armd Bde to whose command the Regt had reverted. B2 Echelon now moved to an area seven miles West of SIDI SULLEIMAN.

23rd.     replenishment under Capt Miller was completed early. There was plenty of enemy air activity, but B Echelon escaped attention.

Appendix C – Nominal Roll of Officers and Warrant Officers, as at 31 December 1940

In the Field
A/Lt Col LS Harland MC
Major TCA Clarke
A/Major GL Dean
A/Major HWH Mills
Capt RD Scale
T/Capt RGS Saunders
Capt WI Miller
T/Capt JD Aldridge
A/Capt FCKM Laing
A/Capt JH Gabe
Lt F Fleming
2Lt SW Porter
2Lt AH Crickmay
2Lt WEJ Harrison
2Lt DF Bune
2Lt JVC Mason
2Lt PJ Craen
2Lt RW Hill
2Lt DG Sebley
2Lt HB Ball

Attached HQ 4th Armd Bde
2Lt E Delson
2Lt HW Parker
2Lt JP Jackson

RAC Base Depot - Duty
Lt GJ Callan

2Lt RJ Setton
2Lt DW Dunstone
2Lt SEG Longworth

No. 2 W/T Coy Palestine
Lt JH Pink

Detached Squadron
A/Major JG Stephens
A/Capt CC Hulton
A/Capt REM Milner
2Lt RS Kemp
2Lt TJ Troward
2Lt JEG Permuy
2Lt FA Wild

Capt WC Smith OME
Lt HA Barker RAMC
2Lt TH Fletcher Signals

Warrant Officers
RSM C McComb QMS C Dyson
RQMS D Wright MQMS H Fawcett
SSM W Rivers SSM J Wood
SSM A Gray    

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