National Archives catalogue number WO 171/5146.
General Officer Commanding
King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
Light Aid Detachment
Prisoner of War
Royal Scottish Fusiliers
Month and year : March 1945
Commanding Officer : Lt. Colonel The Lord Tryon
1st March 1945
48 hrs rest for the Bn.
3rd March 1945
The Bn moved to 983382, a wood 1 mile NW of KERVENHEIM 9938. Intention: To support 8 Bde 15 (S) Div in eliminating WESEL pocket.
8th March 1945
Bn moved into farms around the wood 983388.
2200 - Tac HQ & No.1 Sqn ordered to join 8 Bde to operate against WESEL pocket.
9th March 1945
Tac HQ moved to join 8 Bde Tac HQ at 059320, NW of KAPELLEN. Intention. To support 8 Bde who are u/c 52 (L) Div in their attack on the central part of the WESEL bridgehead, 52 (L) Div, however, succeeded in clearing their objective unaided, while the Canadians in the North captured WINNEKENDONK & pushed on to the east of that town.
11th March 1945
Recce parties moved to KAUALAER to find billets for the Bn.
14th March 1945
Recce parties leave KAUALAER for PONT (001225).
15th March 1945
Bn, less L.A.D., moved to PONT.
18th March 1945
Commanding Officer & Squadron leaders went to RHEIMS to meet the officers of 17 US A/B Div & discuss future operations.
19th to 22nd March 1945
Rest & maintenance.
23rd March 1945
Field Marshal Sir B.L. Montgomery visited the Bn & decorated three officers & three OR's:-
Captain J.B. Currie No.2 Squadron - MC
Lt The Hon. LHG Russell No.2 Squadron - MC
Lt RJ MacCullum No.1 Squadron - MC
L/Sergeant H. Lippett No.3 Squadron - MM
Corporal H. Dean No.2 Squadron - MM
Gdsm E. Stokes No.1 Squadron - MM
Captain R.A. Montieth was killed in a motor accident.
25th March 1945
Commencement of operation ECLIPSE.
26th March 1945
Recce parties sent to Bde HQ to harbour the bn East of the Rhine.
1900 - 'A' echelon moved off.
27th March 1945
0200 - Tanks moved off. The Bn concentrated two miles east of the Rhine, came under command of 17 US A/B Div.
28th March 1945
Bn moved forward on the US centreline to SCHERNBECK 3943 & came under command of 6 A/B Div (British). In the evening F echelon moved again & harboured at RHADE. The Bde was mentioned on the BBC for the first time since landing in Normandy.
29th March 1945
Bn HQ moved to GROSS RECKEN 5259. No's 2 & 3 squadrons advanced on two centrelines to a point just west of COESFIELD.
30th March 1945
COESFIELD was very heavily cratered, so No's 1 & 3 squadrons found a way round. No.1 Squadron advanced 25 miles & halted just East of MILLENBECK. L/Corporal L Winston (Recce Troop) was killed by spandau fire while climbing out of a bazooka'd Honey tank.
31st March 1945
No.2 Squadron advanced to ALTENBURG & No.1 Squadron, after meeting heavy opposition, got right up to GREVEN.
Month and year : April 1945
Commanding Officer : Lt. Colonel The Lord Tryon D.S.O.
1st April 1945
Bn in GREVEN, waiting for the canal bridge (which had been destroyed) to be rebuilt. No.1 Sqn followed by No.2 Sqn, crossed the GREVEN canal and went on to the DORTMUND-EMS canal. The bridge over the latter was also blown, and the Sqns concentrated West of the canal.
2nd April 1945
1045 - No.2 Sqn crossed the canal first and went into action on the high ground North of LENGERICH 0898. No.3 Sqn then crossed, and at 1400 hrs started off towards LENGERICH, by-passing an 88mm static site of 8 guns. No.3 Sqn pushed on to the high ground beyond and North East of LENGERICH, and No.2 Sqn entered the town, meeting fairly stiff opposition.
3rd April 1945
No.3 Sqn advanced to NATROP, on the Western edge of OSNABRUCK. No.2 Sqn formed a firm base to the North East of LENGERICH, No.1 Sqn by-passed OSNABRUCK to the South, and broke out Eastwards towards MINDEN.
4th April 1945
No.1 Sqn carried out the longest advance the Bn has yet made in one day and pushed right on to MINDEN. Just before reaching the town, they ran up against heavy opposition. The total run was approximately 42 miles. Lieut. I.C. Minnette-Lucas was killed together with 2 O.Rs when his tank was hit by an S.P. gun. No.2 Sqn moved across No.1 Sqn's centre line to AISLADEN and met considerable opposition which delayed the Sqn for 3 hours.
5th April 1945
No.3 Sqn moved up from OSNABRUCK area to FRIEDEWALDE, five miles short of the WESER. This march of 65 miles was made in 6 hrs 40 mins, yet the Sqn was present by the next day when the three tanks which had fallen out caught up with the main body. No.2 Sqn reached the WESER.
6th April 1945
The Bn paused in its advance and concentrated West of the WESER.
7th April 1945
No.3 Sqn crossed the WESER and advanced to WUNSTORF 1527. This involved an advance of 35 miles, in which an aerodrome and a Cl.40 bridge were captured (the latter by a sudden switch of centre line). The Sqn took over 300 prisoners and not one man of 12 Para Bn. (with whom the Sqn was operating), was wounded or killed. The Sqn finished up 7 miles from HANOVER, the leading troops of the British 2nd Army.
8th April 1945
No.3 Sqn harboured West of the river, and the Bn rested whilst the Inf cleared the adjoining woods.
9th April 1945
Rest and maintenance.
10th April 1945
No.1 Sqn advanced North of HANOVER, meeting no enemy resistance. No.2 Sqn protected 11 Armd Div's right flank by advancing to HEITLINGEN, 5 miles N.W. of HANOVER.
11th April 1945
15 (S) Div passed through 6 Airborne Div and captured CELLE. The Bn rested, but expected to move on behind 15 (S) Div in a clearing up role.
The Commanding Officer. DSO.
Major G.E. Pike, MBE. DSO
Captain P.R. Colville. Mentioned in Despatches.
Captain J.D. Stobart. Mentioned in Despatches.
Captain & Q.M. E.R. Randall. Mentioned in Despatches.
QMS(T) Pook A. Mentioned in Despatches.
1 (Lt. I.A. Minnette-Lucas)
2 (remained at duty)
10 (remained at duty)
The GOC 6 Airborne Div and his two chiefs of Staff dined at Bn H.Q.
12th to 13th April 1945
Nos. 1 and 2 Sqns at short notice to clear up any pockets left by 15 (S) Div.
14th April 1945
1300 - Bn moved from STEINHUDER with A & B Echelons.
1700 - Arrived at CELLE 5950.
15th April 1945
1700 - Tac HQ left CELLE for SUDERBURG 828812.
2100 - Arrived SUDERBURG. No.3 Sqn cleared woods in area 6060, North of CELLE.
16th April 1945
No.2 Sqn and 6 Airlanding Bde ordered to clear:- STEDERDORF 925835, ESTERHOLZ 940841, KOHLSTORF 985858, HANSTED 976887, WELLENDORF 012875 by-passing UELZEN 9089 to the South and East. Bn moved to STADENSEN 9179.
1200 - Zero hour for the above operation.
1500 - Opposition from EMERN 9683 where S.P. personnel are holding out.
1840 - LEMKE 955852 taken.
1950 - No.2 Sqn rushing on from HANSTEDT 972875.
17th April 1945
0700 - No.1 Sqn have passed through and are to attack:- RATZLINGEN 975905, REISTADT 960930, MOLZEN 928938.
0730 - No.1 Sqn entered RATZLINGEN. Several enemy S.P. guns pulled out as they went into the town. No.1 Sqn stayed the night at REISTADT 960930 with one troop at MOLZEN 928938. During the day, four of their tanks were bogged, but all got out successfully. One other tank was hit on the front horn by an S.P. gun, but continued to fight. There were no personnel casualties. 400 prisoners were taken and 2 S.P. guns were knocked out. Bn HQ stayed at LEMKE 9585.
18th April 1945
0700 - No.2 Sqn with 6 Airlanding Bde started for ROSCHE 028920.
0730 - ROSCHE captured. Inf pushed on to cross roads at ?97938. Tanks are staying on bridge East of ROSCHE.
1430 - 3 S.P. guns reported at 032912. One tank of No.2 Sqn hit by an S.P. No casualties. No.2 Sqn harboured in area 0392. Lieut. D.S. Magill of No.1 Sqn, was wounded when travelling in a captured car. He was fired on in error by our own side.
19th April 1945
The Battalion comes under comd 5 Br. Div. which has just arrived from Italy. The plan is an advance to the R. ELBE on two centre lines.
Left centre line.
Right centre line.
NEU DARCHAU 1119.
20th April 1945
Bn HQ at MOLZEN 9294. Bn remained stationary.
21st April 1945
Operation to the ELBE commences. On the right, No.2 Sqn with 17 Bde. On the left, No.3 Sqn with 13 Bde. No.1 Sqn to follow in rear of No.2 Sqn and operate with 15 Bde when it arrives.
0530 - On the left, No.3 Sqn set out from BUNSTORF and reached ROBBEL 9500 by 0600 hrs.
0620 - No.3 Sqn reached RORNSTEDT 9503. From then on they were out of wireless touch with Bn HQ.
0600 - On the right, No.2 Sqn left DORMTE 0195 and reached PROBEIN 0397 by 0800 hrs.
1130 - Area 0898 captured, but No.2 Sqn held up by H.E. fire and enemy infantry.
1150 - Prisoner reported 2 Panthers, 100 men and light A.A. guns in forward area ahead of No.2 Sqn. This report was afterwards proved correct, though tanks were never located.
1200 - Intelligence report 500 men in 0792 called "Kampgruppen Ehrn".
1215 - Right hand sub-unit of No.2 Sqn reports A.A. guns, probably 20mm. Leading sub-unit of No.2 Sqn is 500 yds short of 068998. Several 88mm guns, and also fanatical Hitler Jugend troops were encountered at HOHENZETHEN 0699, on the Southern edge of the Forst Gohrde. Two 88mm guns were knocked out.
Sgt. Gardner H.
Gdsm. Stevens A.
L/Cpl. Little B.
Lt. J.F.D. Johnstone
L/Cpl. Little (Bn HQ) was with a medical half track in No.3 Sqn's sector. He was up with the leading Inf section and was about to attend to a wounded infantryman. A machine gun opened up at 20 yds range (in spite of his red cross armlet), and killed him. Bn HQ moved to DAHLENBURG 0014. No.1 Sqn moved to the S.E. corner of the Forst Gohrde to give right flank protection.
22nd April 1945
In the night, the enemy on the Bn front withdrew over the river ELBE. During the night, the Inf reached the ELBE at BLECHEDE 0025, and No.3 Sqn was released. On the right, No.2 Sqn supporting 17 Bde got to within half a mile of the ELBE, after meeting fairly heavy opposition. In the afternoon, Nos. 1 and 3 Sqn's were withdrawn to BEVENSEN 9002.
23rd April 1945
17 Bde continued to attack in the area of NEU DARCHAU 1019, but No.2 Sqn was released and concentrated with Bn HQ at BEVENSEN.
The Bn has had 104 Churchill tanks replaced between Normandy and the Elbe.
Missing (believed POW)
24th to 28th April 1945
The Battalion rests.
Major I.J. Crossthwaite, Sqn Leader No.3 Sqn. Croix de Guerre.
The Regimental Sergeant Major. Croix de Guerre.
Both the above awards were for service in Normandy.
29th April 1945
D Day for 8 Corps Assault crossing of the Elbe in the BLECHEDE area.
30th April 1945
1930 - Bn less No.2 Sqn crossed the Elbe at Artenburg 3482. Bn HQ and No.1 Sqn harboured 1½ miles North of LAUENBURG at 888360. No.3 Sqn harboured 2 miles further up at 835365.
Month and year : May 1945
Commanding Officer : Lt. Colonel The Lord Tryon
1st May 1945
0430 - No.1 Sqn, in support of 15 INF Bde, moved off from the wood in 898412 to attack WITZEEZE 9143.
0700 - No.1 Sqn captured WITZEEZE & took 50 prisoners. No.3 Sqn moved up behind the Commandos, but were then ordered to support 1 Yorks & Lancs in their attack on MÜSSEN 883490.
1300 - No.3 Sqn captured MÜSSEN & advanced another 2000 yds forward of the town. Meanwhile No.1 Sqn in support of the 1 KOYLI's pushed on towards PÖTRAU 9248 but were held up by strong infantry opposition. A second attack on PÖTRAU is to be launched at 1900 hrs from the area 915445. This was successful.
1300 - Tac HQ moved from BUCHHORST 885375 to WITZEEZE 9173.
1330 - No.3 Squadron captured GROSSE PAMPAU 895520.
2nd May 1945
0800 - No.3 Squadron, supporting 13 INF Bde, moved off from PÖTRAU 9046 & reached the railway by 0815 hrs.
0900 - No.3 Sqn reached 923515.
0930 - No.3 Sqn at 925599.
0935 - PW reported no enemy in MÖLLN 9564, though possibly 2 SP guns SOUTH of MÖLLN.
1000 - No.3 Sqn have reached a point just SOUTH of MÖLLN & are pushing on.
1300 - No.3 Sqn reached EINHAUS 9574 and were ordered to stop by the GOC (5 Brit Div). Subsequent events proved that they could have entered LÜBECK without difficulty the same afternoon. No.1 Sqn moved to TRAMM 9156, carrying two coys of the 6 RSF. They arrived at 1515 hrs. No.1 Sqn was then directed on NUSSE 888663. Tac HQ, followed by main bn HQ, moved to WOLTERSDORF 925575.
1600 - One subunit of No.1 Sqn at BREITENHELDE 921606.
1630 - No.3 Sqn ordered to continue advance. By nightfall they had cleared the village of GROSS GRONAU 9982, where they met fairly stiff opposition. Tac HQ moved to BUCHHOLZ 989752.
1720 - One subunit of No.1 Squadron had reached MUNHÄGEN 908648. During the morning 1000 prisoners were taken by the Bn. In the afternoon, the Commander of the 245 Div surrendered his entire division to the infantry.
3rd May 1945
0700 - No.3 Sqn pushed into LUBECKE which they reached by 0730. The infantry had entered the town during the night. Meanwhile No.2 Sqn & the LAD rejoined the Bn from the other side of the River ELBE.
1300 - The Bn, less 'A' & 'B' echelons, moved into LÜBECKE.
4th May 1945
0630 - 'A' & 'B' echelons arrived in LÜBECKE.
5th to 7th May 1945
Reorganisation & maintenance.
8th May 1945
VE day. Recce parties set out for occupation area E of KIEL.
9th May 1945
0700 - Bn moves to new area (less LAD). Bn HQ is at Schloss SALZAU 727408. No.1 Sqn is at FLINTBECK 5229. No.2 Sqn at NEU SCHÖNBERG 7943. No.3 Sqn at LABOE 8794.
10th May 1945
Total casualties to date.
Killed or died of wounds
Due to enemy action - 34
Due to other causes - 12
11th to 13th May 1945
The task of sorting out the POW & displaced personnel in the area begins. A curfew of 2100 - 0600 for German military personnel, and 2215 - 0600 for civilians, is instituted.
14th May 1945
Most of No.2 Squadron's area is to be turned into a POW camp. The area is to be cleared of all enemy equipment dangerous to security. During the past few days, thousands of German POW have been escorted from KIEL to BERLIN, after arriving at KIEL by boat from E. PRUSSIA.
15th May 1945
Sqns were at the disposal of Sqn Leaders for operation ECLIPSE. A congratulatory letter to the Bn was received by the Commanding Officer, from the Lieutenant Colonel of the Regiment. More German POW to be evacuated. A check point is formed at PASSAU 7336. Route of evacuation is rd junction 595365 - RAISDORF 6334 - PASSAU 7336.
16th to 17th May 1945
Evacuation of German POW from the Bn area continues.
18th May 1945
The GOC 8th Corps visited the Bn. Detachments from the Squadrons paraded at Bn HQ at 1040 hrs. Unit censorship of letters & parcels ceases.
19th May 1945
The Sixth Airborne Division has presented the Bn with a red flag with a blue Pegasus on it, to commemorate their combined activities. Decorations.
Major I.J. Crosthwaite, Sqn Leader of No.3 Sqn - DSO
2618220 L/Cpl Garner V - DCM
20th May 1945
1000 Russians were evacuated from PREETZ camp to WISMAR. Squadrons commenced daily search in their areas for German POW.
21st May 1945
Squadrons at the disposal of Sqn Leaders for operation 'ECLIPSE'.
22nd May 1945
Civilians now granted unrestricted movement in the Corps area except that they may not cross the boundary of the German POW area.
23rd May 1945
Another 1000 Russians were evacuated from PREETZ camp. The following awards have been approved by HM the King.
Lt/Colonel The Lord Tryon - DSO
Major G.E. Pike, MBE - DSO
2612026 Sgt Hanks G. - MM
2031321 Sgt Mulligan A. - MM
2618617 Sgt Heritage A. - MM
The above awards have all been previously notified.
24th May 1945
The following have been mentioned in despatches:-
Lt/Colonel The Lord Tryon
No 829263 SQMS Blake J.
No 2613330 Sgt Beresford L.
Another 1000 Russians were evacuated from PREETZ camp.
25th May 1945
More Russians evacuated.
26th May 1945
1000 Russians evacuated from PREETZ camp.
27th to 28th May 1945
Remaining Russians evacuated.
29th to 31st May 1945
Squadrons at the disposal of Sqn Leaders for tank maintenance.