12 Field Regiment RCA: 11 Battery, 16 Battery, 43 Battery

 

Regimental No.42

 

9 November 1944: Regiment led by Lt-Col R.H. Webb moved from Ghent to Nijmegen area passing the SP at 1050 hrs and proceeding via St Nicolas - Antwerp tunnel - turnabout - Tilburg - 's Hertogenbosch - to CP at Grave. It was a long journey being over 100 miles and the head of the convoy did not reach the new area before 2400 hrs. At Antwerp tunnel the convoy was cut in half and A & B echelons came up separately from here. Heavy rain with some snow and the presence of other large convoys in the route made it very tiring trip. At the DP we were met by guides from the advance party and the regiment was deployed as follows - RHQ with the administration office and command post set up in a school. 11 Battery with 16 Battery and 43 Battery.The regiment relieved the 6 Fd Regt R.A. and the 43 Bty was deployed to the flank on a different zero line to enable it to support 147 Field Regt R.A. The guns were not put in action until first light in the morning. A Echelon situated regimentally.

 

10 November 1944: Weather clear during the morning but clouding up with rain in the afternoon. At first light guns were moved into their gun pits and all btys reported ready by 1000 hrs. Regimental not established at 0200 hrs. Line communication through to 116 Fd Regt RA and 147 Fd Regt RA. Infantry on our front consists of English troops and 101 US Airborne. Enemy reported to be not active but doing considerable shelling of forward area. OPs were deployed by Major Fleury at first light. Major Fleury went to Bn HQ of 101 American Regt. Capt Hooper as rep. Lt Gamblin to OP and Capt Hair. During the night Lt Cooper occupied a flash spotting OP. At 1215 hrs Major Clarke 2 i/c 116 Fd Regt RA visited this HQ to clear up any difficulties in connection with our work with them. Regt is limited to 12 rpg and we kept well within this limit the 16 Bty being the only ones to fire and then only 2 rpg. Major Hart S.C. 16 Fd Bty notified he is to leave tomorrow for Canada via England and take up duties with MD HQ.

 

11 November 1944: Weather cool but clear during the day with visibility excellent. Rain at night. Very litte firing during the day. OPs report only slight activity by the enemy. Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited OPs and reported observation good but enemy positions too far away to be seen. Following this, he lunched at 102 US Airborne Div. Major A.G Goldie and Capt J.E. Harrison made a tour of the Batteries and A Echelon during the day along with the MO. Reported all well but sanitation not of high standard. A show was put on by Auxiliary Services at 1900 hr in RHQ Gunners Mess and was well attended. Tea and biscuits were served after the show. We had a rum issue again today.

 

12 November 1944: Weather cloudy with rain all day - visibility poor. Church parades were held this morning for both Protestants and R.C.s the Catholic service being held in the local church. Very little firing to-day, the 16 Battery being the only ones to take on a target expending 4 rpg. There was a general meeting of OP parties this afternoon. The following went out for a 48 hour tour of duty. Capt Oland relieved by Capt Hair. Two surveyors from RHQ went with mr. McDonnell to man a flash spotting OP. 19 Cdn Fd Regt SP took over from 147 Fd Regt RA.

 

13 November 1944: To-day has been very quiet around the gun positions with only one Mike target being fired. The weather has been cold with rain for the most of the day. Early in the morning there was a heavy mist limiting visibility but when this cleared visibility was 3000 yards. In an attempt to fix some of the roads leading into the area we have been hauling rubble during the day from Nijmegen. Bad weather and heavy traffic is quickly ruining the roads in this district. The 19 Field  Regiment R.C.A. has relieved the 147 Fd Regt RA and Major B. Prene 2 i/c of the 19th called at this HQ at 1400hrs to consult with Lt-Col R.H. Webb. A show was held in RHQ Gunners Mess which has a seating capacity of 200. Rum issued again to-day.

 

14 November 1944: Weather has been cold with continuous rain and visibility is poor. the OPs were all relieved at 1600 hrs the following officers going out for a 48 hr tour of duty. Lt Frost - Lt Farah - Capt Hooper to Bn HQ, Lt Forsyth and Capt Wright. All with the exception of Lt Forsyth are on regemintal frequency.

On orders from 3 Cdn Inf Div Major A.G. Goldie took recce parties to recce squares in preparation for our moving over to the Divisional area. They found the area very crowded and a further recce will be necessary tomorrow. Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited the 43 Battery at 1400 hrs. At 0900 hrs a parade of RHQ personnel was held and weapons inspected. The Paymaster came up from A Echelon and changed over Belgium money into Dutch. Capt Nixon informed that he had been promoted to a Major and left this regiment to-day to take up further duties with 5 Fd Regt 2 Cdn Div.

 

15 November 1944: Another wet day with rain falling steadily. Visibility poor. During the day there was no firing done by any guns of the regiment but several DF and DF (SOS) tasks were fired during the night. Major A.G. Goldie and recce parties again went out to new area. Due to crowding in that area they are having difficulty finding a suitable location for the regiment. The 45 Battery moved back to this area at 1400 hrs to-day taking op a position. As we may be in more or less static positions for some time to come a sports committee headed by Lt G. Sutherland 11 Battery has been formed. They held a meeting this afternoon to discuss future plans. Lt-Col R.H. Webb and Capt J.E. Harrison both paid a visit to Div HQ during the afternoon.

 

16 November 1944: Weather to-day has been dull and overceast but no rain has fallen. Visibility fair. Very little activity on this front during the day OPs report only slight patrolling by the enemy and ourselves. The regiment has not fired a round all day. Lt-Col R.H. Webb and Major A.G. Goldie visited to the proposed regimental area this morning and surveying of gun areas is to start tomorrow. OP reliefs were sent out at 1400 hrs. Major Wilson relieved Major Pleury at Bn HQ of 101 US Div. One officer and 13 ORs proceeded on 48 hr leave at 1230 to-day. The men going to Ghent and the officer mr Hillier to Antwerp.

 

17 November 1944: Another quiet day on this front. Rain has been failling heavily all day and OPs report visibility poor. Major A.G. Goldie made a trip around the Battery positions and A Echelon. The rain of the past few days has made some of the roads into the gun positions almost impassible. The gun crews have dug shelters and made stoves out of empty ammunition boxes and are reasonable comfortable. All Battery and troop Command Posts are situated in buildings of some kind. Lt-Col R.H. Webb spent most of the day at Div where he was a member in a G.M.C. Despite bad weather the health of the troops continues good and the main practice of the MO these days consists of treating. Capt Dack of the 4 Fd Regt joined the regiment to-day to take up duties as troop commander D Troop, filling the vacancy left by Capt Brown who is posted to 11 Bty as Bty Capt.

 

18 November 1944: Weather has been wet all day and visibility is poor. At 0300 hrs the general area ground RHQ was shelled by a 105mm gun. About 10 shells landed - one hitting the building containing the Command Post but there were no cacsualties to personnel. T\he only damage to equipment was a couple of flat tires on a 60 cwt vehicle. During the day general maintenance was carried out but is was limited due to the bad weather. Lt-Col R.H. Webb spent the day at a study period at Div, followed by a conference with the CRA. There is no hint as yet of when we will move to the 3 Div area and some of our positions are now occupied by Medium Batteries.

 

19 November 1944: Another quiet day in this area. Early this morning the skies cleared and the sun shone for the first time in many days - but it didn't last long and clouded up again in the afternoon and started to rain towards evening. Visibility during most of the day was good. A church service was held in the RHQ Mess Hall at 1000 hrs and was well attended. During the afternoon Lt-Col R.H. Webb visitid Major Wilson and some of the OPs.

 

20 November 1944: Weather to-day has been cloudy - but no rain. OPs report visibility to be fair with a ground haze lasting until 1200 hrs. We are having no trouble in staying within our 12 rpg daily allotment as there is very little firing going on. The OPs report little activity on our front with only te odd partrol being sighted. At 1300 hrs to-day the OPs were relieved and are now disposed as follows:- Lt Sandhurs , Lt Sutherland, Capt Dack, Lt Rockell and Capt Hair at Flash spotting OP. Another show was put on by the Auxiliary Services in A Echelon.

 

21 November 1944: Weather started off to-day by being clear with a cloudless sky but by 1400hrs it had clouded and was raining. Visibility good up until 1500 hrs. Durng the day course shooting under the guidance of Major D.N. Wilson was done from the OP. Lt-Col R.H. Webb paid a visit on 43 Bty OP at 0900 hrs returning at 1200 hrs. Three HF targets were laid on by Capt W.P. Hair early in the afternoon and were fired during the night. Two showers were put on by the Auxiliary Services at RHQ Gunners Mess and both played to a full house. A lecture on Holland was given by a civilian to the troops in A Echelon to-night and was well received.

 

22 November 1944: Weahter has been cold with rain all day. Very little activity around the gun positions to-day - only a few targets being fired and the weather preventing anything but necessary maintenance. Two new 25 pr guns were drawn by 16 Bty to replace those that had been BLRd. At 1230 hrs OP reliefs RVd at RHQ before proceeding to the OP. The following officers were deployed. Lt Oliver, Capt Hooper, Lt. Addis, Capt Wright in flash spotting OP. Major Kibler relieved Major Wilson. The only activity reported on our immediate front is patrolling by ourselves and the enemy. Enemy arty active during the day and at night.Three reinforcements arived at the regiment to-night.

 

23 November 1944: Weather rain all day, visibility poor. To-day has been quiet with very little firing. The steady rain has almost filled some of the gun pits and has made the entrances to the gun positions very hazardous to M.T. The gunners have all been issued with rubber boots and are at least keeping their feet dry. Major Goldie and recce party recced a gun area which will be occupied for a harassing fire program carried out on a Corps limit, nothing definite on moving there as yet. A check of vehicles in the regiment revealed us to be overstrength two 5 cwts and these were transferred to North shore Regt. A calibration troop of 3 officers and 17 ORs arrived to-day and are being quartered and fed by RHQ. They have brought with them two standard guns and will start calibration to-morrow. The two guns received by 16 Bty yesterday when examined by Capt Hastings proved to be in poor shape and were immediately sent to Workshop.

 

24 November 1944: Once again meteor messages along with the odd shelrep formed the main message for our OP Log. One Mike target scale two was fired and several bty targets. At 0930 hrs the calibration troop swung into action and by 1600 hrs all the available guns in this regiment had been done. The Officer i/c calibration said the guns were shooting remarkable close even before calibrating. There are three guns in workshop and they will have to be done later. At 1230 hrs there was a change around of OPs officers. Capt Kirkpatrick, Capt Oland, Capt Dack, Lt Moore and Lt Lafferty relieving those already out there. Major Fleury B.C. of 43 Bty was notified to-day that he is be one of a party of 21 from the Division returning to Canada on 30 days leave following five years service outside of Canada. The weather is in its custom these days has been wet with rain all day and poor visibility.

 

25 November 1944: Weather has been cold with showers. Visibility good. Advantage was taken of the clear skies to do maintenance and some painting. During the day part of the 101 US Airborne Div was relieved by the 51 (H) Div. Starting at 0700 hrs this morning. On our left front the positions held by the 12 KRRC have been taken over by Recce. As yet nothing of the changes have affected our OPs. An officers kit shop has been moved into the Div area and while the supplies are limited, officers in the regiment are taking advantage of it ot renew their kit. To-day saw the first edition of the "Saturday Salvo" a weekly regimental paper. It is a short news sheet, edited by Sjt Lezack containing news of the various sub units in the regiment. Given the support of the gunners it should provide an interesting digest of activities in the regiment.

 

26 November 1944: To-day has been clear and sunny with bright moonlight at night. Visibility good. Early this morning Major A.G. Goldie went to Div HQ to make arrangements for our move to the Div area. Returning at noon he went out again with recce parties at 1400 hrs. Orders were received from Div at 1110 hrs that we were to move 27 Nov 44. Later orders from Corps said this would be around 1200 hrs. At 1000 hrs Lt-Col R.H. Webb went to Corps RCA returning at 1230 hrs. In the afternoon he spent considerable time in the 3 Div area making arrangements for Reps, OPs etc. At 2030 hrs Lt-Col R.H. Webb held an orders group of the Reps and OPs that will be deployed to-morrow in the new area and put them in the picture regarding the new area in general.

 

27 November 1944: At 0800 hrs this morning advance parties went to the new area, led by Major Goldie. Orders were received from Corps that we were to move at 1200 hrs. At 0900 hrs guns were taken out of section and the difficult job of taking them out of the gun pits was begun. The ground was boggy and it was neccesary in some cases to winch them out. OP parties went out ahead and took over from the 14 Fd Regt. Major Wilson went to 7 Bde as CRAs rep. Major Kibler as COs rep to CSR and Capt Wright as COs rep to BWR. Three other OPs were deployed; Lt Addes, Capt Oland and Capt Hooper. As in the last area, OPs will be changed every 48 hrs. A forward exchange was set up at 7 CIB with lines to the OPs. Regiment started to move off at 1145 hrs, order of march being RHQ - 43 - 6 - 11 Btys - A Ech and passed start point at 1200 hrs. Route was via Ewijk. Communications on the move was by wireless and DH. DF was reached at 1400 hrs and guides met the regiment and led them to area. Guns were in action at 1435 hrs. Zero line 90 degrees. The area is very wooded with very little accommodation for troops. There have been both English and Americans in the area previous to us and they have left some dugouts. For the most part though, it is neccesary to dig in. Luckily we are on high ground and it is fairly dry. RHQ is in a garage attached to a house which accommodates the Officers Mess. The Admin Office is across the way in another house. We have taken over the DF tasks of the 14 Cdn Fd Regt and have been alloted a DF Task. Activity on this front is at present limited to patrolling by both sides.

 

28 November 1944: Steady rain all day long has hampered the ambitious digging program that is goin on in all the gun area. Some of the batteries were lucky enough to locate dugouts and gun pits from the Americans who were here before us, but for those that didn't, it is neccesary to dig in. The OPs did considerable shooting using up our allotment of 12 rpg per day. In addition we engaged several mortar targets sent down by Div. There has been very little activity on the front to-day and the only movement being patrols going out at dusk. Traces for operation "Click" a local advance by 8 Bde were sent down from Div. We engage 5 targets, scale one early to-morrow morning. A show was put on by the Auxiliary Serves at a local monastery at 1,00 hrs this evening. Visibility at the OP - fair.

 

29 November 1944: The sky has been cloudless and the weather warm. Visibility excellent. Operation "Click" began at 0400 hrs and we began to fire our fire plan. Shortly after this operation began, the leading platoon ran into heavy M.G. fire, suffered casualties and withdrew. As a result, our fire plan was called off. Between 0700 and 2230 hours we fired five H.F. targets, scale one, as part of a Corps H.F. plan. During the day targets were fired by O.P. and some shooting done. The fine weather aided greatly the work being done on the various dug-outs on the gun positions and by now almost all the neccesary digging is completed. Col Webb left at 1330 hrs for Div where he was member of G.C.M. During the day Major Goldie visited the Battery's and checked on camouflage. The position lends itself to hiding vehicles and guns and one should be safe from air observation. Enemy planes were overhead during the day and dropped a few bombs. Two landed in 11th Bty area, one within 50yards of their Bty C.P. The windows were blown out of the C.P. but aside from a few scratches from flying glass no harm was done to either personnel or equipment. At 1900 hours a show was out on the officers mess RHQ for the officers in the regiment. After the show tea and biscuits were served. There was a change over of the Bde's on our immediate front, the 9th Bde relieving the 8th Bde. Due to this change all our Reps and O.Ps, with the exception of Capt Oland, will be relieved by 14th Regiment tomorrow.

 

30 November 1944: We have had another clear day as far as weather is concerned. Visibility from OP very good. Between 0800 and 1500 hours we fired six HF tasks all scale one. Other observed shooting was done by Capt Oland at OP 23. All the Reps and OPs, with the exception of Capt Oland were relieved by 14th officers and returned to unit. At 1120 hrs the CRA Brigadier Suttle paid a visit to the unit. Along with Col Webb he visited the Bty's and stayed for lunch at RHQ officers mess. Col Webb attended a CRA's conference at Div Headquarters at 1600 hrs. Capt Harrison, the adjutant, left at 0630 hrs for Antwerp where he was given a medical examination for the Air OP course. He returned at 1600 hrs having passed the test. Twelve hundred German ground sheets were obtained and issued to-day and should help a lot in keeping the men on the guns dry. November has been a very quiet month for the regiment as far as action goes. We have done very little firing and have had very little thrown back at us. Driving accidents have increased slightly due in part to bad weather and poor roads. There has been very little sickness in the regiment despite all the bad weather. During the month to entertainment programs has reached new hights with the auxiliary services showing a picture almost every day.

 

1 December 1944: There was a bit more activity in this area to-day. At 1720 hrs three HE rounds fell on 43 Battery gun positions but did no damage. In the evening numerous flares were dropped right over the gun position but investigation proved them to be from our own infantry who were having a scheme forward of the gun area. An interperter has been assigned to the regiment and will assist us with any language difficulties. We have equipped him with a complete uniform and are supplying him with rations. Capt Oland was relieved at OP 23 by Capt Hair. They report activity to be almost nil on the front. Lt-Col R.H. Webb spent most of the afternoon at 7 Cdn Inf Bde HQ. The weather has been overcast with the odd shower. Visibility good.

 

2 December 1944: There has been very little activity around the gun area. It has rained again all day preventing any serious maintenance. Visibility fair. The 16 Battery spent all morning digging in the trails of their guns to do some higher bracket shooting but at the last moment it was called off. Lt Hillier took over OP 23 at 1230 hrs relieving Capt Hair, Lt D.H. Gunter was posted to the 11 Battery from RHQ and Lt Cooper came from 11 Battery to RHQ. Lt-Col R.H. Webb spent all day at a study period at 7 Cdn Inf Bde. Major Morrison joined the regiment to-day and takes up his duties as BC of the 43 Battery. The Weasels issued to us back in Maldegem were turned in to-day. In the evening a poker game was held at RHQ Officers Mess, many of the battery officers participating.

 

3 December 1944: Weather - rain in the morning and afternoon - clearing up in the evening. Visibility poor. A church service was held at 1000 hrs in the 11 Battery area and was well attended. Another group of 3 ORs and two officers left to go on leave to Brussels and Ghent. At the same time a party of 4 went for 48 hrs leave to Paris. Activity on the front was almost nil during the day only a few targets being fired. Due to poor visibility OPs had little to report. Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited OP 23 early in the morning returning around noon. In the evening enemy shelling increased on our front and on the left flank across the river. The enemy put in a counter attack on 50th Div front but it failed and 80 prisoners were taken. A picture show was shown in RHQ Officers Mes followed by tea and a sing song featuring Lt. I.M. Acorn at the piano. A good time was held by all and it is hoped it will repeated in the near future.

 

4 December 1944: Weather has been dull all day with some rain. Visibility fair. During the early part of the morning HF tasks were fired and during the day te one OP we have deployed did a few observed shoots. By now most of the positions are well dug in. Some of the gun crews going as far as to line their dugouts with logs. An amazng number of small coal stoves have appeared and almost every dug-out boasts one. Now the initial work is done the workers are reclining and enjoying the fruits of their labour. During the day the 3 Cdn Inf Div War Artist visited the regiment and sketched one of the guns in the pit. In the morning the B.Cs attended a conference at 7 CIB and discussed exercise 'Indian'. At 1930 hrs an orders group for B.Cs was held by Lt-Col R.H. Webb in RHQ Officers Mess and plans for the visit of the GOC to this regiment were discussed. The enemy has been quiet inactive on our front and our own activity has been limited to pratrolling. The enemy has blown dykes and has started to floot the "island" the piece of land between the Maas and the Nederrijn and it has been necessary for some of the troops in that area to withdraw across the Nijmgen Bridge. A new type Weasel was drawn  by the regiment to-day but as yet it has not been decided how it will be used. At 1915 hrs the enemy started to shell the area around the 11 Battery. While the M.P.I. of the shells landed beyond the Bty and on the gun positions of a heavy regiment, several shells exploded near the Battery Command Post and shell fragments going through the windows, wounded Sjt Dewar and Gnr Liston. Both wounds were in the limbs and were of a serious nature. They were immediately evacuated through the RAP. In all, there were three different shows to Chose from in the area to-day and all off duty personnel were given a chance to attend.

 

5 December 1944: Except for the odd shower the skies have been clear to-day and the sun shining. Visibility good. Orders were received that the GOC 3 Cnd Inf Div would inspect the regiment at 1000 hrs to-morrow and much of the spare time was spent in cleaning up for the occasion. Barbers are in short supply and anyone that could wield a pair of scissors was conscripted into the job. Several targets were fired by Capt Kirkpatrick in OP 23during the day otherwise the guns were silent. To-morrow we are to take over the OP now manned by the 13 Cdn Fd Regt. In the afternoon the Sigs Officer went up in that area to make arrangements for the line etc. Lt-Col R.H. Webb held an orders group at 1900 hrs to brief the Reps an OP Officers. Major A.G. Goldie held a meeting of the Bty Capts to discuss plans for messing on Christmas day.

 

6 December 1944: The Regiment was inspected to-day by the GOC 3 Cdn Inf Div General Spry. Two parades were held, the first consisting of RHQ, 16 and 43 Btys at 1000 hrs and later the 11 Battery in their own gun area. Following the inspection the GOC spoke briefly to the troops about the progress we had made and answered questions asked by the men. He stayed for lunch at RHQ Officers Mess, departing at 1400 hrs. In the afternoon we took over OPs from the 13 Fd Regt and deployed reps and OP officers as follows:- Major Morrison went to 7 CIB HQ as CRAs rep while Major Wilson went to RWR HQ MR as COs rep. Three OPs were deployed Capt Wright, Capt Dack and Capt Oland with CSR. Capt Wright and Major Wilson on Regtl frequency - Capt Oland and Capt Dack on Bty frequency. The 7 CIB relieved the 8 CIB during the morning and afternoon. In the evening a show was put on in RHQ Officrs Mess and a good many Bty officers attended. Weahter cloudy with rain. Visibility poor.

 

7 December 1944: The weather has continued to be wet with rain most of the day. OPs report visibility to be fair. Eight HF targets were engaged between 0700 and 1500 hrs. OPs did some observed shooting but were limited as amn allotment still remains at 12 rpg. In an attempt to speed up the passage of shelreps we have put a set on the shelrep net and in future all shelreps will be passed to CBO by this means. Enemy mortars on this front are becoming more active and attempts are being made to locate them by means noticeable and it has been necessary to devote one truck to that purpose alone. A stage show sponsered by the 51 (HD) was put on at the Monastry and as many off duty personne as cared to attend, did so.

 

8 December 1944: The weather to-day has been clear with no rain. Visibility good. Eight HF tasks were fired during the day and observed shooting was done from the OPs. The OPs were changed around this afternoon. Lt Farah relieved Capt Wright at OP 17, Capt Hooper took over OP 20 and Capt Hair OP 11. In the morning Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited 7 CIB HQ and in the afternoon he pain a visit to OP 11. A lecture on 25 pr ammunition was given by a rep from Div in the afternoon. It was attended by the Bty Capts, one officer per troop, BSMs, amn bdrs and one no one per troop. A camouflage officer from Div also paid a visit to the regt yesterday. In an effort to speed up the passage of Moreps each field regt in the Div is supplying a No 19 set and operator to their Bde. Our set was supplied by 16 Bty and reported to 7 CIB in the afternoon. A party was held at RHQ Officers Mess in honour of Capt J.E. Harrison who leave for England to-morrow. Capt Wilkinson Staff Capt 3 Cdn Inf Div was present and came out second best in the poker game that was held.

 

9 December 1944: The first snow of the season fall early this morning and covered the ground to the depth of a half inch. As it melted it made the reads and gun positions boggier then ever. Visibility good. More HF tasks were fired to-day and observed shooting was done by the OPs. Capt J.E. Harrison left early this morning for England and Lt D.H. Cooper has assumed the duties of Adjt. Due to poor weather and heavy traffic it has become necessary for more attention to be paid to road maintenance and the regiment has been made responsible for the roads leading into the gun area. Lt. Acorn who has been in Ghent bying Christmas supplies returned this evening with a truck load of beer and liquor.

 

10 December 1944: Weather clear during the day with showers at night. By noon, most of yesterdays snow had disappeared. Visibility good. A Protestant Church Parade was held at the Monastery over 90 men attending. RC church parade held at 13Cdn Fd Regt. A few HF tasks were fired and some observed shooting done. In the afternoon five red smoke targets were fired to guid 'Tiffies' in, and from all reports were successful. OP officers were relieved in the afternoon Lt Bosley going to OP 14, Lt Rockwell to OP 11 while Capt Dack took over OP 20. Major Kibler relieved Major Wilson at OP 14. Official word has been received that leave to England for D day personnel will commence 1 Jan and work was started to-day on the lists of those eligible.

 

11 December 1944: Weather cloudy with rain. Visibility fair. To-day has been very quiet. We were given eight HF tasks to engage but only three were within our range. One red smoke target was fired, the church in Zyfflich being penpointed for the 'Tiffies'. Hits were obtained. The front is very quiet, night patrols being the only movement. More of the area is being flooded every day and movement is difficult. Trucks were busy all day around the gun position hauling rubble to repair the roads and some progress was made but there is still much to do. A show was put on in the Monastery in the afternoon and evening and played to a full house each time. Plans for Christmas are going ahead. RSM Hamilon RLG, took a truck back to Belgium in an attempt to buy farm produce but came back almost empty handed.

 

12 December 1944: The weather has been clear and sunny to-day. Visibility good. Some observed shooting was done during the day and night found us again involved with eight HF targets. The break in the weather has given us a chance to work on the roads leading in to the position and to do general maintenance. Twenty four large nets were drawn by the regiment and have been used to camouflage the guns and these along with the natural camouflage have concealed the positions very effectively. Capt Kirkpatrick left early this morning to return to the Calais area to represent the regiment when civilians from Dover are inspecting the German guns that fired on England for so long. Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited 7 CIB HQ at 1100 hrs this morning returning for lunch at 1300 hrs. New Mk 7C directors were drawn by the regiment to-day but due to poor packing they were all badly damaged and need extensive repairing.

 

13 December 944: Three officers were sent to Nijmegen this morning to aid in taking a census of available billets in the town. We were visited to-day by P.O. Dodds of the Taf. Being a 'Tiffy' pilot he was quite interested in the procedure for laying down red smoke and this was explained to him in detail. Early in the afternoon a report was received from Major Morison CRAs rep at 7 CIB that the enemy was believed to be using a new type of artillery shell on this front. The shell seems to explode discharging ten small bombs which in turn explode. As yet nothing extensive has been found out about it. We received traces of a fire plan in support of a platoon attack by Regina Rifles at 0300 hrs to-morrow. The platoon's intention is to attack enemy strong point at Eindjeshof harass the enemy, capture PW and withdraw. We fire two targets and expend 50 rpg. Brigadier Leggat visited Lt-Col R.H. Webb and stayed for dinner followed by a picture show and poker game. On our right flank 8 CIB relieved 9 CIB.

 

14 December 1944: At 300 hrs to-day fire plan in support of RRR was fired. The attack was not a success and our forces had to withdraw after having two killed and seven wounded. Five HF targets scale one were fire during the day. Relief of OP took place at 1230 hrs. Lt McDonnell took over OP 20. Capt Oland OP 11, Major Wilson relieved Major Morison as CRAs Rep at 7 CIB. In the evening Major Wilson laid on a series of HF tasks to be fired by the Btys. The weather has been clear all day with no rain but there has been a heavy mist in the morning and late afternoon which as limited visibility at the OPs. Lt Sandhurst joined the regiment to-day from CBRG and has taken up duties at RHQ.

 

15 December 1944: Weather has been bright and cold. In the early morning and evening there has been a heavy ground fog and OPs report visibility at times limited to 200 yards. Seven HF tasks were fired during the day and numerous targets were taken on by the OPs. Activity on the front has been slight ad very little enemy movement is seen. In the morning Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited the Btys and in the afternoon went up to 7 CIB HQ. Lt Peach, special increment attached to 16 Bty has been sent up to Div RA to act as LO for Div. There were several changes at the OP. Capt Duffield taking over from Major Morison at the CSRs and Lt Ethier replacing Lt McDonnell at OP 20. In the evening Lt-Col R.H. Webb represented the regt at a dance held by the 14 Field Regt in Nijmegen.

 

16 December 1944: To-day has been very quiet around the gun area. HF targets were fired during the day and several observed shoots done. The day has been dull with light showers - visibility fair. Lt-Col R.H. Webb received orders to attend a CRAs conference at 1000 hrs to-morrow and following this Major Kibler is to meet the CRA at 1030 hrs prepared to go on a recce. During the evening six or seven buzz-bombs (V1) passed over the area heading west. They were engaged by AA but were not brought down. OPs report seeing vapour trails following the launching of V2's about 20 miles away but as yet none of these weapons have landed in this area.

 

17 December 1944: Enemy air activity increased in this area to-day when eight German planes flew at a low level. They were engaged by both our own planes and by AA and at least two were seen to come down. At 0700 hrs the Germans attacked R house and captured it after driving out the party of QOE holding it. In the engagement we suffered casualties. During the day HF tasks were fired and observed shooting done. Capt Hair in OP 11 engaged a target when he saw four sedan cars drive up there. The shoot was very successful and at least one veh was put out of action. At 1000 hrs Lt-Col  R.H. Webb attended a CRAs conference. At 1030 hrs Major Kibler reported to Div HQ to go on a recce. Following this recce the regiment was given a new area and advised we would be moving there on 19 Dec. Bty recce parties went to this area at 1400 hrs. At 1400 hrs Lt-Col R.H. Webb held an orders group for BCs and gave orders regarding the coming move. He explained that the position must be prepared beforehand and there would be considerable ammunition to dump there. Weather has been dull with rain. Visibility poor.

 

18 December 1944: At first light, recce and working parties from the Btys went to the new area and started to get it in shape for occupation. Bty noon all the suvey had been done and considerable work done on gun pits and slit trenches. Lt-Col R.H. Webb visited Div this morning and obtained information on the dumping of ammunition, in the afternoon he went to the OPs on a visit. At 1500 hrs 43Bty reported enemy shells landing in front of their gun positions in the area of the 14 Fd Regt RHQ. 48 hours leaves still continues to Brussels and Ghent and 15 men left for the former place this morning. A Junior NCOs course assembled in Ravenstein to-day this regiment sending four candidates. There has been very little activity on this front during the day. A heavy German counter attack was launched against the 1st US army front and the enemy dropped para troops in that area. Weather has been wet and visibility poor.

 

19 December 1944: Early this morning we fired a small fire plan of 8 rpg in support of an attack by our infantry on K house. No opposition was met and the objective was taken. Preparation was made for the dumping  of 600 rpg in our old position and over 400 rpg were brought in and unloaded and at this point orders came in suspending further dumping for the time being. At 1230 hrs the regiment started to move to the new position moving one Bty at  time. Bty 1700 hrs al guns were back in action. RHQ remains in the same position. Lt-Col Griffin of 14 Can Fd Regt called at 1500 hrs to discuss with Col Webb arrangement fo taking over of OPs when 9 CIB relieves 7 CIB to-morrow.

 

20 December 1944: This morning the weather shows no improvement, it is foggy with low clouds and the visibility is poor. During the day the 9 CIB relieved the 7 CIB in the forward area and 7 CIB revert back in reserve. At 0400 hrs all the reps and OPs were called in and our OPs were taken over by the 14 Fd Regt. The Btys were busy all day digging in and building "Stand Easy" positions in their new gun area. Some of the men are billeted in civilian houses. In the evening the SCRA had supper in RHQ officers mess. Following supper many officers from the Regt attended a movie.

 

21 December 1944: At 0900 hrs this morning Lt-Col R.H. Webb attended a CRAs conference and on his return at 1020 hrs the Btys were given prepare to move. RHQ remaining at the same position and the Btys going back to the area they had just left the day before yesterday. the CO met the BCs at their respective gun positions before noon. The 11 Bty moved at 1230 hrs, the 16 at 1330 and the 43rd at 1430 hrs. Bty 1530 hrs all the Btys had reported "Zero line recored". Ten HF tasks were fired during the day, scale one- that was the only firing done. In the evening a message came from Div saying that there was evidence of enemy aircraft and troop concentrating, that anything may happen and all sentries were were to be on the alert. The Btys and RHQ personnel were notified and were told to have small arms close at hand. The weather to-day remained foggy with low clouds overhead and poor visibility. During the day Lt McSherry went to 'D' Tp as GPO and Lt Ethier from 'D' Troop came to RHQ as IO.  

 

22 December 1944: Early to-day the COs reps and FOO parties were told to be ready to move out in case the 7 CIB goes back to the forward area. The alert caused by the concentration of aircraft and paratroops north of out area is still on. Ten harrassing fire tasks were fired duting the day with two bombards, scale 1 on HBs. Five rpgs were allotted to the Air OP and a shoot on two targets was prearranged. The bad weather prevented the Air OP from engaging these targets. The 4 LAA Regt deployed six of their guns in our area during the day. In the afternoon Capt Dack from 'C' Troop went for a few days as a Rep from 3 Div with 2 Div. The weahter showed improvement  no rain - no fog - but the visibility is still poor. In the evening Capt Bell, previously wounded came back to the Regt, he is now with RHQ. Lt Oliver is also back. 

 

23 December 1944: Lt-Col R.H.Webb left this morning for England on a tour of duty He is expected back around the 1st of January. During his absence Major A.G. Goldie 2 i/c assumes command of the Regt. Even with good weather a few hours of sun and good visibility the regt did little firing, the 16 Bty being the only one to engage a target with one round of gun fire. Capt Kirkpatrick reported in this afternoon. He served as  guide to people from Dover "Hell's Corner", visiting the big guns at Cape Gris Nez and in the Calais area. The regt took part in the operations against those long range guns. During the evening red flares were dropped from planes at several places around the regt area. There was no AA fire. A dance was held in RHQ officers mess for half of the officers in the regiment. Amongst the guest were Lt-Col H.S. Griffin CO 14 Cdn Fd Regt, A/Lt-Col C.R. Astronder, 13 Cdn Fd Regt, Capt AWilkinson SCRA, Capt Slichter IORA, Capt C.F. Black, several Canadian Nursing Sisters and a few Dutch girls. The party was a real success.

 

24 December 1944: The weather is fine with good visibility. The regt fired 21 rpg during the day. 18 on HF tasks and 3 on a target fired by the Air OP. A few OP officers went up with the Air OP officer to have a look at the area in front of our fwd infantry area. The front remained quiet and very little activity was reported. At 1900 hrs a Christmas dinner for the officers was held in RHQ mess. The RSM and the RHQ sergeants took over the guard at RHQ as a Christmas present for their men.

 

25 December 1944: At 2400 hrs a Christmas present to the enemy - the regt fired the first HF of the day, to be followed by nineteen other at different intervals. The weather remains clear but cold, visibility very good. In the afternoon Major A.G. Goldie and the Adjt went to the CRA to get information regarding the impending move of the Regt. At 1700 hrs the 7 CIB is relieving the 4 CIB which is supported by the 4 Fd Regt on 4 CIB return they will come into Corps reserve. Many buzz bombs flew over the regt area during the day, they were going in a SW direction, but none were heard to explode. At 1530 hrs TLE veh hit by a jeep driven by a 2 Cdn Div man. The driver of the jeep was killed. In the evening Major A.G. Goldie acting CO had a conference with the Bty Commanders to give them orders and information on the impending move of the Regt. To-night 43 Bty are having a Christmas dinner at the Monastry, with 50% of the ORs from RHQ.

 

26 December 1944: Prepare to Move - was given at 0900 hrs this morning. Recce parties and OP parties moved from RHQ at 1000 hrs. The Regt is moving into the 4 Fd Regt area who in turn are moving into the area we are presently occupying. The regt moved in the following order 11 Bty at 1130 hrs, 43 Bty at 1230 hrs, 16 Bty at 1300 hrs and RHQ at 1330 hrs. Major Morison went as Rep to 7 CIB. 5 CIB from 2 Cdn Div is now under command 3 Cdn Div and the 4 and 6 CIB went to corps reserve. The regt now assumes responsibility for the 4 Fd DF SOS and all DF tasks within range 2 and 3 Div front. In the afternoon we received the great news that our CO Lt-Col R.H. Webb has been awarded the DSO. The weather to-day was clear, no clouds but cold. Visibility good. The ground is all frozen.

 

27 December 1944: The weather remains very cold and all the dirt roads are frozen hard. Visibility is fair. From this date Capt J.F. Brown 11 Bty is to be A/Major and to be SOS to 4 Cdn Fd Regt and Capt Bell from RHQ it to go to the 11 Bty. During the day the regt fired 12 HF tasks and the Air OP engaged two tgts but bad visibility prevented him from completing the shoot. A few Battery targets were engaged by our OPs. Everybody was busy cleaning the new position. We took over all the gun pits and dug outs from the 4 Fd Regt so there won't be much digging to do. In the afternoon officers from the 4 CAB had a conference with Major A.G. Goldie to prearrange the use of one of OPs and one of our alternative positions for an indirect shoot with their tanks. The 16 Bty held their Christmas dinner in RHQ mess hall, the dinnr was followed by a movie in the recreation hall. To-night the moon is so bright that one could read a newspaper outside.

 

28 December 1944: Early his morning the regt took part in a fire plan in support of a patrol form the 7 CIB. The fire plan was a success but the patrol sent to capture PWs, when at it's objective found no trace of the guns. The CRAs rep reported a very quiet night, only one enemy patrol being encountered. The roads are in a very poor condition due to ice and the traffic is held to a minimum until main crews correct the situation. In the afternoon LOs had to be sent to the 4 Cdn Fd Regt to show them around our previous area. The OPs reported a fair amount of enemy shelling, five shelreps and two moreps being sent in to the CBO and CMO. 34 rpgs were fired during the day. 15 on the fire plan and the rest on HF tasks, tp and bty targets. Our MO Capt W.E. Finkelstein is leaving to-morrow. He is attached to the 14 Cdn Fd Amb 6 CCS. In the evening a movie was shown in RHQ mess hall. The weather remained cold and the ground frozen hard. The visibility is good but fogging up at intervals.

 

29 December 1944: The good visibility allowed the Air OP and our ground OPs to engage many enemy targets. Twenty one rpgs were fired during the day and only the limitation on ammo to be expended in one day prevented the OPs from engaging more targets. The weather remained good but cold. In the afternoon Capt Beer left for the 14 Cdn Fd Regt. He was promoted to the rank of A/Major and will be in command of a battery. Our new Medical Officer Capt Mattram RCAMC replace Capt W.E. Finkelstein who left for the 14 Cdn Fd Amb. Lt Farah CPO in the 11 Bty was promoted to the rank of A/Capt. He becomes "E" Tp Commander. In the afternoon and in the evening a picture show was held in the mens mess in RHQ. During the night, the bright moonlight curtailed patrol operations by the infantry.

 

30 December 1944: At 1030 hrs this morning Major A.G. Goldie A/CO attended a CRAs conference at Div. On his return he explained to the Bty Capts the different changes that are taking place on our front. The 3 Cdn Div is taking over 2 Cdn Div front which is going into Army Reserve, less 5 CIB which goes under 3 Div Command. The GOCs reserve will be formed of the QOR less one Coy. The CSR less one Coy - one Bty of SP A/Tk and one armoured regt less one squadron. For the present time, 6 Cdn Fd Regt remains in our area. We had a quiet day, bad visibility presented very little opportunity to do much observing from the OPs. At 1600 hrs there was a change over in the OPs. Lt Gamblin relieving Lt Frost and Lt Armstrong relieving Capt Bell, Major Morison remained as CRAs rep 7 CIB. To-morrow morning Lt Heacock is going on a Mines and Booby trap course at Knocke, Holland and Sjt Anthony on Nos 1 Equipment Course at Larkhill in England.

 

31 December 1944: Weather cold with some snow in the  morning, clearing up in the afternoon and evening. Visibility was fair. Fire plan in support of exercise KICK was received from Div and the regt fired on it twice, once at 2235 and again at 2250 hrs. HF tasks were fired during the day. A few RHQ and Bty men are in the recreation room having a bit of a sing song. Gnr Teed is playing some of his old favourites on the piano and the padre H/Capt Brandt has issued every man present with a song sheet. Lt Ethier is anxiously waiting for the clock to strike the hour of midnight so he can "despatch the first shells of 1945 from this regt - - - at least is will be a little more exciting then throwing the proverbial "ball room streamers".

 

1 January 1945: At 0900 hrs this morning may enemy planes were observed in our area. One was seen crashing down in front of our forward troops and a report from HAA regt states that 14 were shot down. The first group of officers and ORs going on leave to U.K. left during the day. It was composed of Major D.M. Wilson, Lt. D. Frost and six ORs. Most of the OPs were relieved during the day; Major Kibler replacing Major Morison as CRAs Rep with 7 CIB. Capt Farah OP  #1, Capt Hooper OP #2, Lt McDonnell OP #3, Capt BellOP #4, Capt Hair O #6. Lt-Col R.H. Webb came back during the evening from a tour of duty in England, and reassumed command of the Regiment. The weather remained nice with good visibility. Little activity was reported from the front. The fire plan on Exercise KICK was successful. The patrol reached their objective, killed at least one enemy but failed to bring back any PWs.

 

2 January 1945: Weather to-day was cloudy and misty. Visibility down to 500 yards. The day was quiet with very little activity being reported at the front from the OPs and only ten HF tasks fired from 0001 to 2400 hrs. In the afternoon Lt-Col Webb, DSO went around the Regimental area and inspected gun positions and later on went to HQ, 3 Cdn Inf Div. At night Lt Burns and Lt Lafferty reported back from Brussels where they had gone on a 48 hr leave. The second group of personnel for leave to UK are getting ready to leave to-morrow morning. Twenty three D day men will be going to England for at least seven days.

 

3 January 1945: Rain and mist prevented any observation during the day but the weather was not as cold as usual. Three bombards and three HFs were fired. In the afternoon Lt Addis and Lt Gunter were prosecuting and defending officers on a Court Martial held at Div. During the night the Regiment fired 5 rpgs on a fire plan in support of Exercise TRUMP; The intention of this exercise carried on by 9 CIB was to capture PWs. The fighting patrol encountered heavier resistance then was expected, suffered five casualties but didn't get any PWs.

 

4 January 1945: This morning, the CRA Brigadier Suttie paid a visit to this HQ. Major Morison was appointed CRAs Rep with a reserve Bn, the CSR, this Bn with 1e Reg de la Chaudiere stand by ready to counter attack should the enemy succeed in penetrating our lines. At 1400 hrs an Air OP shoot was prearranged; the first target, buildings and church was allotted to the 11 Bty. The second and orchard believed occupied by the Huns - this to the 16th Bty, and the last one a moving gun - to the 43rd Bty. The two first targets were engaged and well plastered but the Air OP could not observe the enemy gun. Only three HF tasks were fired during the day. The OPs engaged a few tp targets mostly against a few Huns in the open. During the day four shelreps were sent in to the CBO and CMO from the OPs. The weather remained fair all day - the ground and trees covered with frost. Visibility approximately 100 yards.

 

5 January 1945: The weather remained good but cold, visibility fair with ground mist at intervals. At 1145 hrs an Air OP shoot was prearranged, the target being the buildings on the north side of the road. The shoot was not completed before 1300 hrs, the delay was due to three enemy jet propelled planes flying over our area and heading south. In the afternoon Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO went to OP No 3. This OP is situated in a windmill and offers a very good command over all the surrounding area. This OP and one of our alternative positions is often used by the 6 Cdn Arm Regt to fire the 75mm guns on their tanks. While it should appear evident to the enemy that this windmill is used as an OP, he has not yet sent a shell close to it. Thirteen rounds per gun were fired during the day on bombards against HBs, HMs and observed targets. The area occupied by the RRRs and RWRs were fairly heavily shelled during the day. Our OPs sent in nine shelreps and two moreps. Capt Hair is preparing a position to try out an upper register shoot. At 1630 hrs a Smort bombard was carried on against en enemy mortar position.

 

6 January 1945: To-day as very quiet. The weather was dull with rain and snow at intervals. Visibility poor. Only 2 rpg were fired. In the morning Lt-Col R.H. Webb attended to the Exercise FALCON. This exercise was on Air Support - different channel to go through to get air support, procedure, etc. Another issue of the "Saturday Salvo" our regimental newspaper was published during the day. At 2050 hrs a message came from Div saying that a German in civilian clothes had escaped from his Dutch guard and was now loose somewhere in 9 CIB area. Description of the German was passed out to all ranks and all were on the alert.

 

7 January 1945: The weather remained dull and cold with bad visibility. An RC mass and communion was held in RHQ mess hall at 1000 hrs and a protestant church parade at 1100 hrs. It was a very quiet day and only three rpgs were fired mostly on bombards against HBs and one round on a Smort bombard against a mortar position. During the evening the 4 CIB on our Div front sent patrols as usual to capture PWs but met with no success. Lt Heacock came back in the morning from a one week course on mines and booby traps. ORs left to-day for Ghent and Brussels on a 48 hr leave.

 

8 January 1945: This  morning the ground was covered with snow and the snow kept falling during most of the day. Visibility was practically nil. At 0935 hrs the Regiment fired the first HF task of the day. 3 more were fired until he HF program was cancelled at 1225 hrs on account of a fire plan in support of 8 CIB exercise PLUM. This operation planned to capture PWs was preceeded with an HB neutralizing fire plan. H hr 1600 hrs. The fire plan itself was to cover the area with HE and then keep a screen of fire to help the withdrawal of our own infantry. Three field regiments, 2 medium and one HAA took part in the operation in support of one coy from the NSR. The Regiment fired around 130 rpgs. Three PWs from 1052 Bn were captured. Our own casualties were 8 killed, 8 wounded. No news of the enemy casualties were received. Capt Wright went out as special rep. On account of the bad weather the Air OP had to stay on the ground.

 

9 January 1945: The snow was still falling this morning. The weather remaining cold and the visibility down to 1000 yards. On account of the heavy ammunition expenditure yesterday the Corps HF plan was cancelled for to-day. At 1600 hrs the Regiment was engaged in another fire plan, this time in support of 2 platoons from 9 CIB going to Eindjeshof to take PWs. The infantry reached their objective but found it unoccupied. They remained there until 0430 hrs. They didn't suffer any casualties. Capt Wright went again to-day as CRAs rep with authority to engage any ML targets in the area Eindjeshof.

 

10 January 1945: The ground remained covered with snow. The weather is cold and visibility about 1000 yards. At 0900 hrs the CRAs rep Major Morison reported a very quiet night in the forward area with various exchanges of small arms fire. At 1025 hrs a Netherland patrol of approximately 30 men was seen going through our position. They patrol daily from Nijmegen to Groesbeek. At 1030 hrs a new DF ad DF (SOS) Task Table was received cancelling the previous one. All in all, the day was very quiet with no HF and no bombard and only a few troop targets. There was a change in the OPs. Lt Cook took over OP #6 from Capt Hair who went to OP #3, relieving Lt Armstrong. At 2200 hrs a message was received from Div Arty stating that from 1200 hrs to-morrow the Regiment would be under two hours notice to move.

 

11 January 1945: At 1000 hrs the Regiment received the order to change position with the 4 Cdn Fd Regt. The change over started at 1300 hrs and by 1730 hrs all the troops had report "Zero line recorded". The men are all busy fixing up their new homes-dugouts are being redecorated. Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO attended a CRAs conference. Our OPs are staying out util the 7 CIB is relieved by the 2 Cdn Div. They have authority to fire the 4 Fd Regt if necessary. To-day the weather remains clear but cold with good visibilty. The ground is still covered with snow. The ammunition expenditure for to-day was nil.

 

12 January 1945: Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO left early this morning for a demonstration on a new type of fuze, he was accompanied by Major Kibler and Capt Hastings. The demonstration had been cancelled the two previous days around 0800 hrs but this morning the cancellation came too late and the CO had left. A DR, sent after the party failed to catch up with them. Luckily enough the CO managed to get a private demonstration from the officer in charge of the shoot at the range. During the day 700 rpgs were dumped on the gun position for future operations. All our OPs were relieved by officers from the 4 Fd Regt and the 7 CIB replaced by the 6 CIB came into Div reserve. 5 CIB and arty support reverted to 2 Cdn Div command. Major D.M. Wilson, Lt. Frost and the first group of ORs on U.K. leave reported back this afternoon. All were very pleased with the good organization of the "scheme". Lt Frost added "The trip is highly recommended to all". Another group, including RSM Hamilton left this morning. Only one bombard Smort from the CMO was fired during the day. The weather is cold and dull, the snow is slowly melting away. Visibility approximately 1500 yards.

 

13 January 1945: The weather remained cold and dull with clouds overhead. Visibility approximately 1500 yards. The dumping of 700 rpgs started yesterday was completed at 0430 hrs today. The Regiment received 9 reinforcement gunners from C.B.R.G. In the morning Capt Wright, Capt Dack and Capt Hair went to Lommel range for a demonstration on a proximity fuze. They reported that the new air burst fuze is very effective. From 2233 to 2359 hrs the 43 Bty fired 4 HF tasks. The 11 and 16 Btys remain layed on fire plan "PEAR" in support of a patrol from the 7 CIB. The patrol came back without asking for any arty support. Another publication of the "Saturdays Salvo" our Regimental newspaper. This paper while giving te local regimental newsalso gives a few useful ideas. In this mornings edition of the Maple Leaf the "D" troop boys were happy to find an article on one of their dugouts. For one "Lil Abner" came second on the reading priority list.

 

14 January 1945: To-day we had clear weather. Visibility good. Major Goldie left in the morning for his U.K. leave. At 1000 hrs a discussion period on practical experiences in the field was conducted by Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO in preparation of a Div. discussion period. Two BCs, one troop capt and one C.P.O. were present. The 7 CIB relieved the 9 CIB in the afternoon and we sent a CRA rep and OPs. Major D.M. Wilson went to Brigade, Capt Hooper to OP #22, Capt Farah to CSR Bn HQ, Capt Bell to OP #26 and Lt Forsyth to #OP 28. At 1610 hrs the 11 Bty took on a very unusual target - a submarine in the Wall River, a 17 round destructive shoot did not seem to bring any results. Capt Cleveland, ALO, 143 Wing RCAF is attached to the Regiment for six days. "F" Troop under Capt Hair did the first upper register shoot this afternoon. An air burst ranging shoot to find out if our guns are properly calibrated, started after dinner and observed by the flash spotters from Survey Regt had to be postponed because the rounds could not be observed.

 

15 January 1945: Fog and mist kept the visibility practically to zero all day and prevented all observed shooting. In preparation of another dumping program to-morrow the batteries are digging pits to receive the ammunition. Four hundred rpg are expected to be dumped and if so, our holdings over 1st line will be 1200 rpg - the same as it was in the days of Caen and Cormelles in France. Lt Addis and Lt Acorn left this morning for leave to the U.K. Lt Addis was so eager to go that he left his money in his billet and only after numerous phone calls from the leave camp, through Army, Corps and Div channels that he succeeded in having it forwarded. The Div Signal School scheduled for this morning will not open until to-morrow. Six gunners from the Regiment will be attached to this school. The school was formed to train new signallers within the Div, so that, should the reinforcements become inadequate there will be enough signallers to carry on. An RCCS Sjt from our attached Section will be one of the main instructors. Only 5 rpg were fired during the day. At 2130 hrs Capt Hooper at OP #22 opened up with the 16 Bty on an enemy patrol. The results were very satisfactory and the patrol was dispersed. In the evening a fairwell party for Major McMaster who is leaving Div Arty to go to 2 Corps was given by 3 Div Arty Mess and took place in our RHQ Officers Mess. The party was a great success and one of the highlights of the evening was the concocted "Wilkie Special" - by Staff Capt Wilkinson - which, according to all reports is nearly as powerful as a Corp HF Task.

 

16 January 1945: To-day Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO, Major D.M. Wilson and Capt D.H. Hooper were among the officers from this Regiment who attended a study period at Div Arty. In the afternoon another 400 rpg were dumped for this Regiment. This ammunition is to be put under ground and camouflaged as soon as possible. The weather stayed clear but cold. Visibility between 2000 and 3000 yards. There was a change at the OPs Lt McDonnell relieved Capt Bell and Lt Oliver relieved Lt Forsyth. The ammunition expenditure for to-day was 8 rpg. According to OP reports the Huns stay well out of sight. With the buther away to the hospital the RQM is having a little trouble with the fresh meat situation and a call has gone out to the batteries to get a gunner butcher. Three movies were shown at the Monastry to-day.

 

17 January 1945: This morning the GOC paid an uexpected visit to this HQ. With Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO he went around RHQ lines. Strong winds and rain to-day. Visibility between 1500 and 3000 yards. At 1430 hrs Lt-Col Webb, DSO went to a CRAs conference at Div. The ammunition expenditure for the last 24 hrs was 6 rpgs and these being fired on HF tasks. In the afternoon the 9 CIB relieved the 8 CIB in the forward area. At 2200 hrs OP 26 fired a Mike target scale I. The target was a group of buildings in this area where a light could be observed. The rounds fell plus of the target and the light did not disappear. Thinking the light might be a Jerry trick to waste our ammunition the OP did not re-engage it. The Regiment was issued to-day wit 5 white coats lined with rabbit skin and 10 white camouflage dresses for use at the O.P.

 

18 January 1945: Snow and rain pushed by a very strong wind out down the visibility to zero practically all day. This morning Brigadier Colqhoun visited the Regiment. Brigadier Colqhoun is in charge of a training brigade in Canada and is on a tour of duty in this theatre. The ammunition expenditure for the day was 9 rpg. As usual a Corps HF Task Table included 8 targets scale one. Two driver operators and two signallers were posted from this Regiment to the 2 Survey Regt which, not having been on the priority list for reinforcements is at the moment, very short of such personnel. Capt Bell was in charge of a Div Arty party to check the calibration of the guns in the three field regiments. The shoot was carried out West of Nijmegen, one gun from each Bty took part in the shoot and fired 5 rpg. The fall of shot was observed  by a section of flash spotters from the Survey Regt. The results are not yet known but should be soon available. The state of health in the Regiment does not vary much from week to week, according to the three last weekly reports. The number of non effective personnel for last week was as follows. Scabies and pediculosis cases 1, jaundic 1, respiratory 1, skin an cellullar 2, scabies 3, pneumonia 1, VD 3.

 

19 January 1945: The rain, wind and snow in the morning were replaced in the afternoon by good weather with very good visibility. In the afternoon Lt-Col R.H.Webb, DSO went to OP 22 to observe an upper register shoot. This OP offers a very good control over the area, extending between squares east as far as the high ground around Cleve. Nearly every day now the batteries have an upper register shoot. It is too soon to form an opinion on the use of this form of shooting. The only exciting thing that happened was a stray round from one of the troops, falling a few hundred yards from the CO and Lt Ethier on their way to the OP. Lt McDonnell left to-day for the 4 Cdn Div as LO and Staff Learner. The ammunition expenditure for the last 24 hours was 14 rpg. Two more than the daily allotment. The Regiment was issued with some white camouflage nets for the vehicles and the guns and also to cover the blast marks on the ground.

 

20 January 1945: We had some bad weather to-day. During the morning the visibility was good, but in the afternoon, snow accompanied by a strong wind made visibility very bad. Yesterday the 49 British Div on the island North of Nijmegen were attacked the enemy scored some initial success. This morning, supported by two squadrons from the 6 CAR they attacked around Zetten and are making some progress. In the afternoon the Adjt. Capt D.H. Cooper organized a telephone silence scheme to improve the communications by wireless and to give some R/T practice to the batteries. At 1400 hrs machine gun bullets flew over "F" troop gun position. Everybody there was pinned down for a few minutes. No! it wasn't a Jerry break-through but just a few rounds coming from the SW where the 8 CIB has a rifle range. In the evening air-burst over RHQ - it is believed they came from a HAA Regt nearby. After such a long period of quietness a little practice does no harm!!! It is even suggested that an alternative RHQ Command Post be organized in the basement. At 1600 hrs Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO went to Div to try to get a reinforcement officer to replace Lt McDonnell. At present the Regiment has only two increment officers.

 

21 January 1945: To-day was marked by a particularly heavy fall of snow for this country. The ground is covered with 6 inches of it. The visibility remained bad practically all day. At 0030 hrs the regt fired 10 rpgs on a fire plan in support  of Exercise Pete put up by the 7 CIB to capture PWs. This had been intended to be a silent show and the fire plan was to cover their withdrawal should be fighting patrol run into any trouble on their return. No PWs were brought back and the infantry suffered three casualties. On the "Isand" North of Nijmegen the 49 British Div made good progress in the clearing of Zetten. They reported the capture of 340 Germans from 2 Para Regt. Enemy casualties at least 670 - own casualties less than 200. In the afternoon Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO went to OP 28 and tried an upper register Mike targets as an experiment. Every Bty has one or two gun pits for upper register shooting. Only two batteries could engage the target. As usual, in the afternoon and during the evening a movie was shown at the Monastery by the Aux Service. The Regiment also received allotments for the Canada Club, Wintergarden in Nijmegen. Such allotments, plus UK leave, short leave to Paris, Brussels and Ghent does much in maintaining the already high standad of morale.

 

22 January 1945: We had clear weather with good visibility most of the day, the ground remaining covered with 6 inches of snow making it more difficult for the OP officers to observe fall of shot. Another dumping program to-day brought 600 more rpg to the Regiment which now holds 1200 rpg over 1st line in this position and 600 rpg in the alternative position. At 1330 hrs Major D.M. Wilson went to a CRAs conference at Div for the 2 i/cs. In the afternoon a camouflage officer from Div went around the gun positions to inspect the concealment of the surplus ammunition. During the day Capt Bell went to the 9 CIB as a rep to register targets for Exercise Paul which is supposed to take place to-morrow. Exercise Paul will be a raid on a coy scale, to capture PWs. Three 60 cwts with drivers were sent to the RCE for the day to help them sand the icy roads. It is not unusual for the Regiment to have to send lorries to the engineers to help them on special jobs.

 

23 January 1945: At 0830 hrs this morning the Regiment took part in a fire plan in support of exercise Paul by the 9 CIB. The raid was put on to capture PWs in the area. The different targets had been recorded yesterday. The operation was successful; 9 prisoners captured for 2 of our casualties (both wounded). Thirty three rounds per gun were fired duing the day on "Paul", on HF tasks and on a few observed targets. The 7 CIB will be relieved to-morrow by the 8 CIB so the necessary arrangements were made for the taking over of our OPs by the 14 Cdn Fd Regt. In the afternoon friendly planes flew over our area taking air photos of the area in front of our forward infantry, while some other attacked the factory area across the Waal River. Two red smoke targets were recorded to-night. They are to be fired to-morrow. The officers at the different OPs were told to observe the targets if the attack takes place and to report on the accuracy of the red smoke rounds and on the effectiveness of the attack y the fighter planes. The weather remained cold, with visibility up to 4000 yards.

 

24 January 1945: The weather remained cold with good visbility. A few flakes of snow fell during the night. The relief of the 7 CIB and also the relief of our OPs by another field regiment are postponed until to-morrow. This morning Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO attended a CRAs conference at Div Arty and spent a few hours at the 7 CIB HQ in the afternoon. An Air OP shoot on Zanpol was successful. According to the pilot the 11 Bty, which was engaged the target put a perfect concentration on the ground. This target is suspected of being used by a Coy HQ. The Air OP is always available to the Regiment whenever the visibility is good, but the rationing of ammunition prevents us from using his services more often. Fifteen rounds per gun were fired during the day, 10 rpg on Corps HF tasks and the remainder on observed targets. It is not very often that enemy movements can be observed in the day time because the Hun remain under cover in day and move around at night. The scarcity of coal and the cold weather are starting to be felt in the Regiment and mostly in RHQ officers Mess. The batmen headed by the Padre had to hunt for some wood to-day in order to be able to cook the meals.

 

25 Janaury 1945: Clear but cold weather, good visibility. The relief of the 7 CIB by the 8 CIB was cancelled in the morning, our OPs will have to stay out for a few more days, this cancellation was due to the 8 CIB being relieved by a brigade from the 2 Div. This making three brigades up and leaving the 3 Div with one brigade up and two in reserve. Our Div frontage is now only 5000 yards. Starting from grid line 58 to the Waal River. Only 10 rpg were expended in the last 24 hours thus making it easy for the batteries to keep 1800 rpg over 1st line. In the afternoon Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO went to a conference at 7 CIB. One officer, Lt M.K. Douglas and five ORs arrived to-day from the Reinforcement Coy. The Regiment is kept pretty well up to strength but is yet minus one special increment officer. Two more 10 cwt GS trailers had to be turned over to the AS Officer, 3 Cdn Inf Div Rear, thus making it more difficult to carry the surplus winter equipment like stoves, tarps, white camouflage nets, etc. The Adjutant Capt D.H. Cooper spent all day at Rear Div, prosecuting in the cases of Gnr. Talkington and Gnr Carlisle Court Martialed to-day. Lt Gamblin was defending officer.

 

26 January 1945: Visibility fair, weather cold with some snow. This morning the Survey Section were busy surveying an alternative position for a regiment that is due to come in soon. This is necessary because where we already have one troop, the incoming regiment will have two, both operating from the one command post. Where this is impossible a close by position had to be recced and surveyed. All the datas, includng pivot guns, director markerds, bearing picket cards had to be turned in to the BM. Major A.G. Goldie reported back this afternoon from his UK leave. The state of cleanliness of the vehicles in the 16 Bty was given as an example to the other two batteries. The Regiment has a pride in keeping guns and vehicles in the best shape possible. Under

Lt Sutherand, thirty officers and ORs, including Major Morison had a hocky practice in Tilburg. According to all reports everything is going well with the team. Good billets were provided for the team and the best of equipment was supplied for the practice ''It was just like being back in Canada'' exclaimed one ardent player on his return to the Regiment.

 

27 January 1945: The weather did not change to-day. It remained cold and the ground is still covered with snow. Visibility is good. The Bty found out only this morning what missed them on the 21st. They had been puzzled since that date by three holes that had suddenly appeared on the ground at their ''A'' Echelon after a few friendly planes had flown over. This morning two Engineers dug out an unexploded thousand pound bomb complete with detonator; two others are still underground. The Survey Section had to send the survey data of our present positions to the B.M. this afternoon, the evening at a conference held at 7 CIB. To-day saw the publication of another number of the Salvo, our weekly regimental newspaper. At 2350 hrs Lt Gamblin at OP 22 engaged an enemy patrol with a Mike target scale 1. The patrol was approximately 50 strong, trying to infiltrate into our lines. The patrol was dispersed

 

28 January 1945: As usual on Sundays, there was an RC Mass this morning at the Monastery and a voluntary Protestant service. In the afternoon Lt-Col R.H. Webb went to a GOC conference for the Brigade, battalion and regt commanders. At 1400 hrs we had an unusual and rather unexpected visitors. A liberator, after a bombing mission in Germany lost two engines and headed for our side of the Rijn. Realizing that the two remaining engines would not carry them any futher and suspecting of being over friendly territory the American crew bailed out over "no man's land". The wind blew them on our side. The plane crashed on Jerry's FDLs. The pilot, co-pilot and tail gunner landed in the 43 Bty area. Six other members of the crew landed in the 2 Cdn Inf Div area. They belonged to the 44 Bomb Group stationed in Norwich, England. They were first taken to the 43 Bty Officers Mess and then to HQ RCA. The boys in the 43 Bty are considering making "silk panties" from the chutes. In the evening the RRR were relieved byt the SDG. Lt. Gamblin from OP 22 was relieved by the 17 Cdn Fd Regt. The rest of the 7 CIB will be pulled back to-morrow. Weather today clear but cold. Visibilty good.

 

29 January 1945: The relief of the 7 CIB by the 9 CIB was completed to-day and all our OPs and reps reported in. The Regiment is due to move tomorrow in the area occupied for two days in December. RHQ will have to move this time. The 2 i/c Major A.G. Goldie is having a difficult time obtaining billets for everyone. This morning we had to pick up four sets of bridge rails, apparently they will be needed in the coming operations. Main and Rear Div are moving to-day. Main HQ is moving into 7 CIB HQ at Berg en Dal and Rear is moving into Nijmegen proper near the bridge to the Island. Four guns that have not been calibrated yet went out west of Nijmegen, but once in position the calibration had to be postponed due to bad visibility. In the afternoon Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO went to a conference at 7 CIB HQ. Weather to-day was very cold, with some snow. Visibility bad. In the evening the officers of the 11 Bty had a party and a dance.

 

30 January 1945: On account of the rain and mild weather, the snow was melting away to-day. Fog cut down all visibility. At 1300 hrs Lt-Col Webb, DSO held a BCs conference in RHQ Command Post. The Regiment moved to-day in the following order. 43 Bty at 1530 hrs, 1 Bty at 1600 hrs, 16 Bty at 1630 hrs and RHQ at 1700 hrs. For security purposes the digging had  to be done under cover of trees as much as possible. At 1100 hrs two enemy shells landed in the position to be occupied by the 11 Bty, killing two children and smashing the windows of the 11 Bty's new command post. By 1800 hrs all Batteries had reported "Zero Lines Recorded". In the near future the Regiment is to be issued with white paint for all guns and fighting vehicles, but if the weather keeps like this, there won't be any use for it.

 

31 January 1945: The rain to-day and the mild weather, left only a few pathes of snow in the fields. The ground is getting very muddy. The calibration of four guns took place this morning on the "Island". Results should be soon available. Around 1130 hrs Lt-Col R.H. Webb DSO had his jeep stolen from Div Arty car park. The Provost were immediately notified but so far with no results. To help digging in the vehicles, command posts and dugouts, 2 i/c obtained the aid of a bulldozer from the Engineers through the SCRA. It is the first time in months that a bulldozer had been made available. To-day everybody was busy getting settled down in the new position. Ony 4 rpg were fired in the last 24 hrs, so most of the time was spent in getting the new positions into shape. To-morrow at 0930 hrs a rep from the Regiment is to report to 2 Cdn Corps Liaison at Grave Barracks. On arrival he is to announce his presence by saying that he is for serial 12.

 

1 February 1945: The rain today completely melted the snow and all the white camouflage over the amn and the gun pits had to be removed. Visibility nil. All the amn dumped into pits had to be checked, because some holes were found filled with water. 300 rpg were dumped to-day on our previous position and another dumping programme will be taking place to-morrow. The regular HF programme was fired to-day and accounted for most of the 18 rpg expenditure in the last 24 hours. In all we had a very quiet day.

 

2 February 1945: The weather improved to-day, but the rain started again in the evening. Visibility fair. In the 16th Bty amn dump 400 rds have been found to be unserviceable due to the flooding of the pits. The target was checked in the afternoon, 43 Bty firing one round per troop and according to the observing officer they fell OK. More ammunition was dumped again, mostly smoke, and our holdings over first line are as follows. HE 1800 rpg, Smoke 678  rpg. Starting tonight no vehicles from 3 Div will be allowed on the roads between 1800 hrs and 0700 hrs unless the driver has a pass signed by the CRA. This restriction is to last until further notice. The 11 Bty had retained the services of the Guards Band now playing in Nijmegen, for a dance to-night, but on account of the restriction on vehiclesmovement, the dance had to be cancelled at the last minute.

 

3 February 1945: In view of the coming operations Major Goldie went to recce a new position with the C.P.O.s. The gun positions and CPs have been picked up and the survey has already been completed. Outside of preparations for the coming operations, everything remains quiet, but for a few V 1s flying over the town of Nijmegen and heading SW. A short fire plan in support of "Each" raid to capture PW's in front of 9 CIB area was received to-night. Our Regt is responsible for only one target, but has to be ready to engage all other targets. H hour is 0800 hrs to-morrow morning. At 1430 hrs a CO's rep reported to the CRAs rep 9 Bde preparte to stay 24 hours. The weather improved all day, and the roads are slowly drying out. Visibility good.

 

4 February 1945: Operation "Each" this morning was a real success and according to the GOC and the 9 CIB Bde Comd, the artillery deserves good praise for their good work. Nine PW's were captured for the loss of one infantry man (wounded). A quick smoke screen was fired at the end of the raid to cover the party that went to pick up the wounded man whom they brought back. The GOC will pay a short visit to the Regiment to-morrow, he wants to speak to as many men as possible. Five Weasels will have to be picked up at Grave to-morrow morning, our Part X Orders will not be amended accordingly. We had very good weather to-day and a little frost at night. Visibility good.

 

5 February 1945: Weather still not good, low clouds and frequent rain. The GOC was around  the morning at about 1010 hrs and spoke to about 350 men. He emphasized the part Arty was to play in the coming operation and generally bucked our spirit up. Weasels arrived OK and are being fitted up as OP vehicles immediately. We lost two more trailers today to 9 CIB, one from RHQ and one from the 43rd Bty. Had a special HF target starting at dark on a dyke junction to prevent Jerry blowing it and flooding the ground East of 7 Bde. Our Corps HF's were cancelled to allow us to fire this. No other firing during the day except one Smort. We reported ready in 3 minutes and fifty seconds, (11 - 3.50, 16 - 3.10, 43 - 3.45) beating the 3th Field by almost two minutes. (5.30).

 

6 February 1945: LO to Div in morning to pick up traces for OP "Veritable". Adjt busy most of the day correcting same for amdts ets. The HF on the dyke junction previous night was cancelled early in the morning to all bde to see if they could snaffle a couple of prisoners. No further report on this and HF was resumed at 0600 hours. Received 20 rounds of Super-charge for ourselves, unloaded a lot for the English troops. They (the English) are in our RHQ 2 or 3 times a day trying to borrow vehicles, rations, etc. We are beginning to wonder whether we are getting a reputation for helpfulness. A johnny from 2 Div area was down to-day aksing ur for 3 60cwts. He got them from the 4th Fd. Grand day for the Airforce but they did not seem to be very busy above us. Some tiffies in action over the island. A quiet day on the ground. The usual HFs at night. Col Webb has left complete with retinue for 7 CIB. It started to dribble rain again in the evening.

 

7 February 1945: A restriction on all movement of vehicles to-day caused the 2 i/c a major headache this morning. Eventually, by arranging convoys to the water and the ration point and starting 2 and 3 vehicles out on one ticket, the problem was solved. The FOOs were up to the infantry during the day. Capt Dack of the 16h Bty threw a track on his weasel which was not replaceable so the LAD went to work and managed to patch it up by 2200 hrs. The RAF was over in strength at 2200 hrs. Continued till about 2 in the morning. BBC report an a tach of 700 planes on targets between the Maas and the Rijn. Weather during the day was bad but a clear night - moon. Al l preparations for Operation "Veritable" finally completed.

 

8 February 1945: Today was "D" day for operation "Veritable". Guns started firing at 0800 hrs a time programme in support of "30th Corps". Cease firing at 0950 hrs. Started a smoke screen on the left of 30 Corps front at 1015 and continued same till 1600. Reverted to normal role in support of the 7 CIB and was ready to engage targets on call. 7 CIB commenced to move at 1800 hours. One of the troops of the 43rd have guns in Germany. The advance is going well in spite of bad weather - rain which does not improve the flood conditions.

 

9 February 1945: Guns firing numerous targets in support of the Scottish and the RRs. Winnipegs have not been commited yet. The attack is still going well. Major Morison is killed when the buffalo he is in with the Col of the Scots is hit by a bazooka near Zifflich. Both 7 and 8th Bdes have reached their objectives. Some mopping up yet to be done. The Luftwaffe was over in the evening. A few bombs dropped by not near us. Most targets are out of range for us now in present position. Flooding makes a move temporarly impossible. Weather was good to-day, a change for the better.

 

10 February 1945: Attack going well, no trouble with enemy as they are all under water. Buffaloes doing a good job. Very little fire being called for by FOO's. Reports are coming in that the German civilians left are treating our troops very well. RWR's have returned to our area again. They had little or no opposition. The weather still is unfavourable. The artificial moonlight is very effective with these low clouds. All infantry reached their objectives.

11 February 1945: The Padre held a church service this morning in an RC Chapel. No other space available and it was much against his better judgement. Unfortunally is was interrupted by the order prepare to move. The regiment moved at 1200 hrs by batteries, 43, 16, 11 and RHQ. We were on the road approximately 4 hours. General Montgomery passed the convoy with sirens going and flags flying. Took up position on the edge of the Reichswald. Bde to follow on the 12th and take over from the 15 Scottish in Cleve. In action at 1700 hours. HF tasks during the night laid on by 9 Bde Rep. Major Kibler's jeep ran over a mine. Evacuated by the English FDS. Weather still cloudy with a little rain.

 

12 February 1945: 7 Bde has moved up into holding position in the South-West portion of Cleve. As they are inactive at the disposal of CRA's rep 9 Bde who are pushing across the canal running from Cleve NW to the Maas. The English infantry moved out of the houses in the village so we quickely grabbed them up. No rations came up as the Nijmegen - Brandenburg road was flooded so we were quite hungry, thirsty also as no water point had yet been found. Fired some HF tasks at night. The CO and the Adjutant went on a recce for a future RHQ. Not very successful so they decided we would stay put for the time being. Major Goldie left for A Echelon and did not get back this night. 9 Bde has pushed as far as the canal. Rain most of the day.

 

 

1 april 1945: To-day is Easter Sunday and the Regiment spent a very quiet morning with no firing. The Padre held a church parade at 1100 hrs in the Legion Barn which was well attended. Received the order to send recce parties forward from the CO at 1500 hrs. Area reported not completely cleared of enemy yet. Capt Sylvester of E Troop of the 4 LAA Regiment showed up to-day having just returned from England. The Regiment moved at 1800 hrs, the 16th Bty moving first. Complete in new area by 2115 hrs. RHQ located in a very picturesque windmill of the old Dutch type. Being in Holland we can now fraternize again. This windmill is about the strongest command post we have ever had the walls are bricked at least 5 feet thick with about 20 feet of earth filled in at the sides. The weather was dull and cloudy with visibility only fair.

 

2 april 1945: The Regiment was ordered to have the recce parties standing by at 0600 hrs. New area to be approx three miles due North. 43 Bty started moving at 0930 hrs. RHQ moved at 1300 hrs. The infantry are fanning out at the moment meeting little opposition except from woods. Role of 7 Bde is to move WSW towards Zevenaar. The Regiment fired a number of HF tasks in support of 8 Bde who are heading for the Banks of the river IJssel due north as well as a few Mike targets in direct support of the Royal Winnipeg Rifles and C Scot Rs. The weather was dull and cloudy in the morning but cleared up in the afternoon. Visibility was good throughout the day.

 

3 april 1945: The Regiment was ordered to prepare to move and to have one Bty ready to move by 0600 hrs. 11 Bty moved first, and were in direct support of 7 Bde. A no firing line in effect East of the 84 grid line. Recce parties were called for at 1300 hrs. The whole Regiment moved at 1400 hrs and were ready shortly after. Quite a windy day with the odd showers. Visibility good. Recce parties warned to meet the CO at 0700 hrs.

 

4 april 1945: The Regiment received the order to move at 0900 hrs and moved North from Wehl to our new area. The gun positions received some fairly heavy enemy shelling. The Regiment was called on to support the 9 Bde. Bdr. Ruck of the 11 Bty was killed while coming to the gun position. He was killed just as he came through the crossroad at Beek. Several shelreps were sent in from the Regiment. We made a recce of the sq in order to be able to support the 7 Bde as their bridgehead across the canal. The Regiment fired several Mike and Yoke targets in support of both the 7 and 8 Bdes. Weather - clear and warm. Visibility good.

 

5 april 1945: During the early morning the Regiment fired several fire plans in support of the 7 Bde. Our FOOs were netted to 2 Div Arty units as well as our own to ensure sufficient fire. The 7 Bde consolidated across the canal East of Zutphen. At 1000 hrs recce parties called. At 1115 hrs message came to cancel the move. The Regiment fired a considerable number of "M" targets and fire plans in support of our own Bde as well as the 8th. At 2350 hrs word came down that recce parties would be prepared to move off at 0600 hrs to the area.

 

6 april 1945: Received the order "Prepare to Move" at 0500 hrs and the first bty moved at 1830 hrs. When they got into action at Almen we were told to move the remainder of the Regiment up and to stay on wheels. Recce parties left at 1300 hrs to go to Gorssel and the Regiment took up this position during the afternoon. From this intermediate position the 43 Bty went into action for a short while to fire propoganda shells into Zutphen. The propoganda was brought to us by a rep from Army. The weather continues very favourable and visibility is excellent. We fired a considerable number of targets for out Bde, one sub-unit having cleared the area. Our OPs reported that our arty fire knocked out two SP guns during the day.

 

7 april 1945: To-day we fired a great number of targets into Deventer. Had some medium shelling of our guns, no casualties and no damage done. We fired some red smoke for the "tiffies". The weather had been perfect for our aircraft and they seem to be making good use of it. OPs report the visibility as excellent. Capt L.F. Kirkpatrick received his majority and takes over command of 16 Bty.

 

8  april 1945: At 1450 Lt Peach was wounded and was evacuated through the RRRs. We fired a lot of counter mortar targets. At 0855 hrs recce parties were warned to stand by. The Regiment started moving at 1220 hrs. The afternoon was very good for air visibility and as result we fired three red smoke targets and done an air OP shoot. The Regiment was completely moved by 1600 hrs with RHQ. When we occupied this position we were less then 3000 yds from the FDLs.

 

9 april 1945: The Regiment is giving close support to the Bde, which is to-day advancing from the East into the town of Deventer. In spots the opposition is well organized and quite stiff. A very good day for smoke and the OPs are making use of this opportunity. At 1730 hrs the CO moved with Bde to its new location. Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO returned from UK Leave and went straight to Bde and resumed command of the Regiment.

 

10 april 1945: The 7 Bde is still attacking Deventer and have reached the outskirts of the city. Still a goodly number of targets being fired but the opposition seems to be growing weaker. Another very good day for aircraft and again several red smoke targets were fired. One OP reported that there was practically no opposition in the Eastern side of the town, and that only the occasional rifle shot was heard. The Jerries in the town pulled out into the wood and several "M" and "Yoke" targets were fired on them. Capt W.P. Hair had his carrier, a signaller and a able casualties from enemy shelling late in the evening.

 

11 april 1945: Capt W.P. Hair reports the following casualties to his crew. Bdr Taylor, Gnr Williams and L/Bdr Kearns. None are seriously wounded but all were evacuated. The 7 Bde cleared the town of Deventer and moved into a concentration area. Recce parties called out at 1200 hrs to recce area. At 1600 hrs we fired a fire plan for the 1 Cdn Div. 7 Bde moved. We had a visit to-day from Brig Clarke the new CRA. To-day was another beautiful clear day and medium bombers went over in strength.

 

12 april 1945: Still supporting the 1 Cdn DIv on their attack West of the IJssel river. We fired a fire plan in support of the 1 Bde, but after that did very little firing. At 1720 hrs recce parties left, all spare vehicles sent ahead at 2220 hrs. Word came down that the Regiment would not move before first light. We heard on the news that President F.D. Roosevelt died this evening. Weather cool but clear with good visibility.

 

13 april 1945: Regt moved to new area near Heino and was in action by 0800 hrs. There has been no firing to-day. The recce parties left at noon to recce a new position and the Regiment to this area at 2125 hrs. The weather to-day had been excellent with good visibility.

 

14 april 1945: To-day has been another quiet one. The CO Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO made a recce of a blown out bridge near RHQ and decided that the Regiment would build a bridge big and strong enough to hold jeeps and motorcylces. The LAD took stock of the situation and came through with a few good ideas on just how is should be built and "the plans were laid". A picture was shown in the evening by the Legion. The name of it was "My Pal Wolf" and it was very entertaining with a goodly crowd there to see it. A few Dutch kiddies were allowed in and they got a big kick out of it. The day has been a cool cloudy one with visibility good. The MO made an inspection of the cook-houses and had a talk with the cooks on sanitation. Sjt Lezack was over looking at the bridge so it appears that the "Saturday Salvo" had a front page story.

 

15 april 1945: Early this morning the 43rd Bty reported that Sjt Mann along with Gnr Howard were involved in a jeep accident and said that both were evacuated to hospital. At 1645 hrs the 16 Bty on orders from Lt-Col R.H. Webb, DSO moved and are to give support to the Ross Force. The bridge is coming along fine and although it doesn't follow along any line as do the RCE bridges, it is a sturdy one. Men from all the Btys and from RHQ have been at it and by all accounts the "grand opening" will be sometime to-morrow. A name for the bridge has been decided upon and as our weekly regimental paper is called the "Saturday Salvo" it has been decided to name this great structure the "Salvo Bridge" and with this name in mind, the sign painters have set to work.

 

16 april 1945: This morning Major A.G. Goldie, DSO inspected the vehicles at RHQ and along with S/Sjt C.W. Sankey checked the tools and equipment. At the same time Sjt Noakes inspected small arms and reported that all were in good shape. Just after dinner "The Salvo Bridge" was opened for business. Many of the men and officers brought out their cameras to take snaps of the bridge.