25 Field Regiment: 12/25 Battery 31 (Kirkee) Battery 58 (Mainwand) Battery- 25 pounders

Unit No.

 

4 October 1944: Regiment moved into to Holland via Braine-Le-Compe and Leende (Brabant).

 

5 October 1944: The Villages are small and close together, only the most important ones are shown on the map. Gun area recced near Helden (Limburg) and Regiment in action at 12.00hrs after 7 weeks break. 82 US Airborne Div and 8 Inf Bde held the front opposite Reichswald Forest. No firing.

 

8 October 1944: Operation to clear front is cancelled. 3 Div ordered to move South to clear Boche bridgehead W of Maas.

 

9 October 1944: Relieved by 94 Field Regiment and moved to positions near Zeeland. In action 1600hrs. Special measusres necessary for local protection as front was very thinly held.

 

11 October 1944: In Operation "Aintree" Regt in support of 6 Guards Tk Bde. 31 Battery providing OP parties with Grenadier Guards and 58 with Goldstream Guards.

 

12 October 1944: Owing to very bad weather "Aintree"was postphoned from 10 Oct until today. H Hour 1200hrs. Phase I the capture of Overloon was completed.

 

12-18 October 1944: Phase II,capture of Venray, began at 07.00hrs. Very bad weather made roads and tracks almost impassable which slowed down the attack. On 13 Oct Regt moved to a very exposed position NW of Overloon 58 Bty OPs had exciting moments. The Regt fired red smoke on 14 Oct to assist Typhoons in attacking Venray Church. Venray was eventualy captured on 18th.

 

19 October 1944: The ground became impassable for tanks. 6 Gds Tk Bde and all Regt OPs were withdrawn.

 

20-26 October 1944: Regt in support of 2 HCR but only 12/25 Bty moved to St Antonis, the move of the remainder of the Regt being indefinitely postphoned.

 

27 October 1944: Regt placed under comd of 7 US Armd Div and orders to move at first light 28 Oct to Asten.

 

28-30 October 1944: Battle of  Asten. This was about the most celebrated gunner action of 21 Army Group in the whole campaign.

 

31 October 1944: Consolidation and strong pattrolling. Regt had three OPs in support of 227 Inf Bde and carried out many observed shoots.

 

1-3 November 1944: OPs withdrawn. Regt supported attack by 44 Armd and 46 Inf Bdes with timed concentrations. Liesel captured with out difficulty. Later one OP and rep was sent to 7 US Armd Div on right flank.

 

4 November 1944: Regt advanced 3 miles to positions near Peel.

 

5 November 1944: Very quiet. First 48hrs leave party for Brussels dispatched.

 

8 November 1944: Regt under comd 3 Div. Moved to area of St Anthonis in support of 2 HCR covering a portion of the Maas. These were the positions recced on 21 Oct.

 

9-29 November 1944: Btys came out of action in turn were allowed to rest in their gun positions. OPs were manned by Btys at Oeffelt, Beugen and Sambeek. From 18 to 22 Nov 12/25 also supplied a rep and two OPs with 3 Recce Regt. On 12 Nov Royals took over from 2 HCR.

Amn expenditure during this time was limited to 15rpg per day, of which a proportion had to be alloted for observed shooting and HF programme each night. Enemy activitiy was not great. The weather was appalling and it was impossible to dig. 31 Bty started moving to Rijkevoort on 25 Nov  but by dark had only succeeded in moving one Tp.

 

30 November 1944: Under comd 15 Div. Regt relived by 4 RHA and moved to positions 2 miles SE of Severnum. 12/25 floundered all day before they were able to extricate themselves from the mud of St Antonis.

 

1-2 December 1944: Regt in support of 31 Tk Bde for operation "Guilford" capture of Blerick. Op parties joined their Armd Regts 12/25 with 107 RAC and 31 with 22 Dragoons.

 

3 December 1944: "Guildford"H Hour 07.45. Regt fired barrage until 08.25. Attack went according to plan. Five bridges were thrown across the anti tank ditch before mid-day and 46 Inf Bde entered Blerick in the early afternoon.

 

4-9 December 1944: Blerick captured, Regt remained in action Severnum but had no OPs out and did very little shooting.

 

10 December 1944: Under comd RA VIII Corps and moved to Terp Barracks near Deurne.

 

11-31 December 1944: In reserve at Deurne at short notice to move in the event of any attack on the Corps front. OPs were recced and the gun area areas surveyed. In spite of false alarms after the start of the German offensive in the Ardennes Christmas was spent in comparative comfort and luxury.

 

1 January 1945: Left Deurne 09.15hrs to relieve 151 Fd Regt near Baexem. The luftwaffe which had reappeared in force over 21 Army Group front caused some casualties. Two vehicles were slighlty damaged. Gnr J.A.Biddle and Pte A.J.Hassell died of wounds received whilst in convoy. Pte D.I.Thomas No.1076777 was evcuated to 153 Field ambulance.

 

5 January 1945: Gnr W.Ross No.11425393 rejoined unit from `missing`, Gnr E.B.Murdoch No.1097998 awared C-in-C.

 

9 January 1945: Still in action at Baexem in support of 159 Inf Bde. As amn expenditure restricted to 10rpg per day little firing was done.

 

10 January 1945: Relieved by 15 Fd Regt and moved to Maasbree to relieve 181 Fd Regt.

 

11 January 1945: Supported in turn 44 Inf Bde, 227 Inf Bde and 158 Bde. Line communications were unusually long and complicated and all sinallers were fully employed in maintenance. Weather very cold -20 degrees of frost.

 

15 January 1945: Gnr W.Ross No.11425393  committed to 2nd Army Court Martial centre from trail.

 

18 January 1945: Regiment in support of 227Bde who relieved 44Bde. 58 Battery relieved 31 Battery OPs after dark.

21 January 1945: 12/25 Battery cookhouse destroyed by fire, result of pertrol burner accident.

24 January 1945: Fire started in 58 Battery CP, H truck destroyed.

 

25 January-14 February 1945: Under command 6 Airborne Div and in support of 5 Para Bde. Occupied positions evacuted by 131 Fd Regt, RHQ remained at Maasbree. Static period, various tgs engaged. On 31 January, regiment fired 12 propaganda shell one at each of 12 selected map refs.

 

2  February 1945:  regiment fired 12rds propaganda shells.

 

15 February-13 March 1945:  Regiment  moved to area Castenraij, under command of 95 US Div with commitments of Div Arty as their own Div Arty not available. Various targets engaged across the Maas including the firing of propaganda shells and support of patrols across the river.19 February level of water in river Maas began to fall. On 21 Feb came under command of 1 Bde who relieved 95 US Div.

 

22 February 1945: Regiment moved to area Venray (Limburg), Tac HQ closed at Deurne and rejoined RHQ. Fired 100 rounds propaganda shells.

 

24 February 1945: Fired a number of targets incl one Red smoke Tgt for Typhoons. Supported 115Bde who sent a party across River to rescue two men wounded in previous night raid.

 

26 February 1945: 60 pamphlets fired by 12/25 Battery.

 

7-18 March 1945: Regt in rest area Baarlo, near Venlo.  Dutch Interpreter Sergeant J.H.Haakens attd to Regiment. Preparations for Op "Plunder" started on Feb 13th. This included recce of gun positions (the first in Germany) and dumping by night (400rpg).

 

20 March 1945: Regiment moved into Germany.