25 Light Anti Aircraft Regiment: 82 Battery 138 Battery 274 Battery: 40mm Bofors

 

Unit No.

 

17 September 1944: During the attack on the 17th, we had one unpleasant evening when about sixty enemy bombers did their best to frighten us. They succeeded!. The Guards lead the rush up the narrow road, followed by 43rd Division and then Fifty Divsion. Unfortunately the Germans were warned of the Arnhem landings, and an SS armoured Division was waiting for the British Airborne troops. It soon became obvious that unless help could reach Arnhem very quickly 1st Airborne Division would be destroyed. All non-essential trafic was brough to a standstill, and 30th Corps made a non-stop dash to cross the Rhine at Nijmegen. But the Germans had other ideas, and they attacked the narrow corridor just as 69th Brigade was approaching Grave and the river Maas. 82th Battery happened to be at the point of the attack, the front half of the Battery accelerated voilently and reached Nijmegen, and the read half went into reverse whilst 151 and 213 Brigades went out one flank into Germany to deal with the threat.

A few of the Airborne troops were extricated, and then 43rd Division and Fifty Division settled doen on "the Island". 43 Div was covering the western approaches to the Bridge, and Fifty Div the eastern.

 

18 September 1944: Moved to new location. No A.A. engagements.

 

19 September 1944: No move. Air raid at dusk in area of bridge over l'Escaut Canal by single-engined fighter-bombers and twin-engined bombers (probably JU 88's and JU 188). 'Seen' targets engaged.

 

20 September 1944: No move of RHQ. No A.A. engagements.

 

21 September 1944: No move of RHQ. No A.A. engagements.

 

22 September 1944: No move of RHQ. No A.A. engagements.

 

23 September 1944: Moved to new location. No A.A. engagements.

 

24 September 1944: Moved to new location. No A.A. engagements.

 

25 September 1944: No move. 82 Bty in area North of Nijmegen had 5 engagements during the day with various types of enemy a/c. 1 JU 88 and 1 FW 190 believed destroyed. 550 rds fired.

 

26 September 1944: No move. 82 Bty had 3 engagements during the day and fired 186 rds at various types of enemy fighter bombers including 1 ME 262.

 

27 September 1944: Moved to new location. 82 Bty had 3 engagements. 64 rds fired.

 

28 September 1944: No move. 82 Bty fired 94 rds a 6+ FW 190's.

 

29 September 1944:  No move of RHQ, 82 Battery in area north of Nijmegen, engaged 1 ME109G at 1035 hrs. The tail of the aircraft was blown off and then a Spitfire fired a burst into it. Claim for Category I submitted 15 rds fired.

 

30 September 1944:  No move of RHQ, 82 Battery engaged 4 ME 109G at 16.27hrs and destroyed 1 aircraft. Claim for Category I submitted.

 

1 October 1944:  RHQ moved to new location. No A.A. engagements

 

2 October 1944:  Main HQ moved to new location at Hatert. East of Maas-Waal canal, Tac RHQ moved to location near Oosterhout (North of river Waal).

 

138 Bty had 3 engagements during this day, as follows

1115hrs 1 Me 109 at 4000'

1225hrs 6 Me\109 at 3/4000'

1935hrs 1 twin-engined bomber probably JU88 at 8000'.

 

3 October 1944: No change in location, No A.A. engagements.

 

4 October 1944: No move of RHQ, No A.A. engagements.

 

5 October 1944: 274 Battery engaged 1 ME 262 flying at 3000'. This a/c was destroyed by the RAF.

 

6 October 1944: No A.A.engagements.

 

7 October 1944: The Division had a day's rest, when relieved by 53 Division.But on the following day it was recalled in action, and return to the mud and water of the flats between the branches of the Rhine. The Regiment received its greatest and most unexpected blow during the last week of November when like out of the blue, there came astounding news that Fifty Division was to be disbanded. Tac HQ rejoined main RHQ. No A.A. engagements.

 

8 October 1944: Main RHQ moved to new location  near Oosterhout, North of river Waal.

 

9 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

10 October 1944:  Change in location, Rear RHQ moved to Beuningen, No A.A. engagements.

 

11 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

12 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

13 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

14 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

15 October 1944:  Change in location, Rear RHQ moved to new location at Weurt. No A.A. engagements.

 

16 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

17 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

18 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

19 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

20 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

21 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

22 October 1944: At 0100hrs 138 Battery carried out harrasing shoot against enemy using single 40mm guns. 138 and 274 Batteries engaged 1 Fw 190 and 1 Me190 flying at 500ft at 1440hrs.

 

23 October 1944: During night 22/23 138 Battery again carried out harrasing shoot against the enemy with single guns, No A.A. Engagements.

 

24 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

25 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

26 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

27 October 1944: Ground shoot by 138 Bty between 0035 and 0045 in support of raid on enemy carried out by 8 D.L.I.  This was most successful as the tracer going in at right angles to the line of adavance indicated the objective to the infantry, and probably confused the enemy. No. A.A. engagements.

 

28 October 1944: 82, 138 and 274 btys engaged two enemy fighters flying at 5000'at 1615hrs.

 

29 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

30 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

31 October 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

The unit remains the Light AA Regt of 50 (Northumbrian) Division, with 3 btys each of 2 tps of 6 x 40 mm Morris SP Bofors.

 

1 November 1944: Regiment joined 53 Welsh Division on the banks of the Maas. No A.A. engagements. During the night of 1/2 D Trp 138  Bty fired in a ground role. A shoot was carried out at 1900 hrs lasting 15 mins and repeated at 0330 hrs for the same period. Target, village church in Gent and Kapel, shoot was in support of raid carried out by 231 Bde.

 

2 November 1944: 138 and 274 Btys engaged 1 Me109 flying at 3/4000ft at 1530 hrs. 23 rds fired.

 

3 Novemberr 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

4 November 1944: Operation order No.6 issued, Subject "Operation Noah". The following AA engagements took place during the day.

1410 hrs 138 Bty 1 Me 109 at 5000ft- 60 rounds

1410 hrs 274 Bty 2 Me 109 at 5000ft- 82 rounds

1415 hrs 82 Bty 1 FW 109 at 5000ft- 76 rounds

1600 hrs 274 Bty 1 Me 262 at 4000ft- 17 rounds

 

5 November 1944:  The following AA engagements took place during the day.

1515 hrs 82 Bty 1 Me 109 at 5000ft- 197 rounds

1515 hrs 138 Bty 1 Me 109 at 5000ft- 106 rounds

1515 hrs  274 Bty 2 Me 109 at 6000ft- 147 rounds

 

6 November 1944: 274 Bty 1 ME 262 flying at 5000 ft at 1230 hrs - 10 rds.

 

7 November 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

8 November 1944: 274 Bty engaged 1 Me 109 flying at 6000 ft at 1302 hrs - 33 rds.

 

9 November 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

10 November 1944: do.

 

11 November 1944: do.

 

12 November 1944: Codewords 'Waterwings' and 'Springtide' received. Main RHQ joined Rear RHQ at Weurt, south of river Waal, 3 km NW of Nijmegn. Tac RHQ remains near Oosterhout, Tac Bty HQ and A, F and H Tps joined their main Bty HQs south of river Waal in Weurt en Nijmegen areas. B, D and G Tps remained on the "Island" North of river Waal with the task of continuing to give AA protection to Div Fd Arty. No A.A. engagements.

 

13 November 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

14 November 1944: No A.A. engagements.

 

15 November 1944: do.

 

16 November 1944: do.

 

17 November 1944: 138 Bty Tac HQ to previous location on the 'Island' with H, D and F Tps providing AA protection for Div Ary, other 3 tps resting.

 

18 November 1944: Op Order No.7 issued, subject AA defence of Div Arty in the 'Island'. 138 Bty carried out a ground shoot at 1415 hrs using one gun.  Enemy OPs in houses, were engaged with 105 rds 12 sec tracer.

 

19 November 1944: The following AA engagements took place during the day.

1318 hrs 138 Bty engaged 2 Me 109 at 7000 ft 4 rds.

1420 hrs 138 Bty engaged 2 Me 109 at 4000 ft 49 rds.

 

D1 and D3 claimed hits on one a/c which was seen to be smoking and losing height, and may have crashed south of Nijmegen. Claim for Category II submitted to Div.

274 Bty engaged 2 Me109 at 4000 ft 27 rds.

 

20 November 1944: CO attended conference held by GOC for Bde Comds, Lt-Cols and Bde Majors. A.A. engagements.

 

21 November 1944: Main HQ joined Tac near Oosterhout.

AA engagements as follows:

1130 hrs 138 Bty engaged 2 Me 109 at 4000 ft 81 rds

1600 hrs 138 Bty engaged 2 Me 109 at 4000 ft 36 rds

 

22 November 1944: Regt advance party sent to Div Rest Area in Belgium (Hooglede). No AA engagement.

 

23 November 1944: Tac 138 Bty relieved by Tac 82 Bty on the 'Island'. H and D Tps relieved by A and B Tps. No AA engagements.

 

24 November/ 29 November 1944: do.

 

30 November 1944: Top Secret letter S/1 dated 30 Nov 44 sent to Btys. Subject - Move to new Div area. Strenght: 7 Officers and 38 ORs.

 

1 December 1944: Regiment moved to 53 Division area, RHQ near to Heijthuizen

 

2 December 1944: The Regiment passed under command of 53 Division and becomes the LAA regiment of the division with 3 batteries of each 2 troops of 6 Morris SP 40mm guns.

 

82 Bty with 71Bde

138 Bty with 160 Bde

274 Bty with 158 Bde

 

3 December 1944: RHQ moved to Heijthuizen location, No engagements.

 

4 December/ 11 December 1944: No change in location, No engagements.

 

12 December 1944: 82 Bty moved to rest area, No engagements

 

13 December/16 December 1944: No change in location, No engagements.

 

17 December 1944:  Considerable enemy air acitivity between 10.20 and 11.30 hrs in the area Baexem, Roggel, Heijthuizen, flights of 2, 3 and 4 Acs at heights between 3000 and 6000ft bombed the district but caused very little damage, 138 Bty fired 310 rds, and 274 Bty fired 126 rds.

The Regiment left for Belgium.

 

19 January 1945: Recce parties departed area Eindhoven.HQ moved to Heijthuizen location, No engagements, Regimental column left area Liege from Geldrop. 138 Bty, Baarle, 274 Bty Helmond Regiment with Division in area for training.

 

20 January 1945: RHQ moved to Opwetten.

 

21 January 1945: Nothing to report.

 

22 January 1945: One troop from Regiment to deployed next day area Duerne.

 

23 January 1945: CO on rece under arrangements with Corps. F Troop recced positions near Deurne, 274 Battery move.

 

24, 25, 26, 27 January 1945: Nothing to report.

 

28 January 1945: CO conference for all officers of the Regiment.

 

29 January 1945: CO recce with cooks. A Troop relieved by F Troop.

 

30 January 1945: CO on recce with CO Manchester Regiment

 

31 January 1945: Nothing to report.

 

1 February 1945: 82 Battery at Son, 138 Battery at Aarle, CO on recce to new area.

 

2 February 1945:  CO to conference at Corps, BC 138 Battry attened CRA's conference on behalf CO.

 

3 February 1945:  CO held conference for all officers of the Regiment concerning forthcoming operations.

 

4 February 1945:  Div commander addressed all officers of the Division.

 

5 February 1945:  CO and BC 138 Bty on recce to new area.

 

6 February 1945:  Regt and Bty recce parties departed for Hatert, RHQ and Btys move at night.

 

7 February 1945:  Regiment comumn arrived, three troops in postion for ground shooting. three troops AA role.

 

8 February 1945:  Arty barrage 60 rpg 10 mins, targets, rounds fired, B. Troop 4800, D Troop 3812, F Troop 4800. Regiment moved. B.troop 82 deployed in AA role.

 

9 February 1945:   Trps of 138 Bty withdrawn to BHQ area, 150 to 200 men required daily for road maintenance. 274 Bty fired 9 rounds at ME109, 22.15hrs 274 Battery fired 97 rounds at Ju88.

 

10 February 1945:  Nothing to report.

 

12 February 1945:  One man 82 bty killed by mine and two seriuosly injured.

 

13 February 1945:  Orders received to move into new accomodation. move cancelled as proposed accomodation comdemend as unfit.

 

14 February 1945:  82 and 274 Btys fired 49 fired 69 rds at 5 ME.262s and one Me109. 82 and 274 Btys fired 460 rds ME262.

 

15 February 1945:   Nothing to report.

 

16 February 1945:   RHQ moved to Groesbeek.

 

17 February 1945:   82 and 274 Tac HQ moved to Groesbeek

 

18 February 1945:  Regiment moved to Germany.