HQ RA 53 Welsh Division

 

19 September 1944: 1635 - 71 A Tk regt less three btys moved over Class 9 Br to join 71 Inf Bde Gp. 1900 - 1/5 Welch ordered to move along North bank of Canal to clear Class 40 br site from East. 53 W Div 00 No 18 issued for adv night 19/20 Sept and 20 Sep. 6 Fd Regt placed under comd 53 W Div.

 

20 September 1944: 0630 - 71 Inf Bde in area West of Eindhoven. 1/5 Welch held up by river obstacle.

0830 - 83 Fd Regt across br and in action. 6 Fd Regt across br in harbour area.

0900 - CRA left for 83 and 6 Fd Regts and will issue deployment orders for 6 Fd Regt if necessary.

1130 - 53 Welsh Div HQ moved to Hoek.

1200 - CRA attended Div Comd's O GP at 160 Inf Bde HQ.

1231 - HQ RA 53 Welsh Div crossed frontier into Holland.

1315 - HQ RA arrived at Hoek.

1600 - 158 Inf Bde attack sp by 83 Fd Regt to clear area North of br.

1800 - 6 Fd Regt moved to 71 Inf Bde area to give additional sp.

1900 - RA 12 Corps confirmatory notes dated 20 Sep. 13 Med Regt and 23/59 HY Bty under comd 53 Welsh Div. NOTE Cannot cross canal until class 40 br completed.

2000 - CRA left with GSO1 to visit 71 Inf Bde to consider deployment of 6 and 61 Fd Regts further to the North to engage enemy North of Wilhelmina Canal, liaison being maintained with 506 American Para Regt.

2030 - 4 RWF at outskirts of village Wintelre.

2130 - 53 Welsh Div 00 No 19 despatched to regts. 53 Welsh Div to protect left flank of 30 Corps from excl Wilhelmina Canal to incl Junction Canal in three bde gps. 46 Bde Gp incl 190 Fd Regt under comd 53 Welsh Div until such time as 15 (S) Div pass through and cross Wilhelmina Canal.

2200 - 6 Fd Regt ordered to send OPs to 101 US Div to observe and engage enemy from North of Wilhelmina Canal.

 

21 September 1944: 0500 - 83 Fd Regt moved.

Morning - 46 Bde Gp and 15 (S) Div passing Div HQ prior to assault on Wilhelmina Canal.

1045 - Coy 1 Oxf Bucks on South side of Canal Oirschot.

1530 - 46 Bde Gp incl 190 Fd Regt, and 6 Fd Regt ceased to be under comd 53 Welsh Div.

1600 - 4 RWF completed mopping up in Wintelre. 130 PW taken.

1630 - 13 Med Regt and 34 SP A Tk Bty to cross Class 40 br over Escaut Canal at 1800 hrs, bing moved up under Corps orders but delay likely owing to traffic blockage. 23 HY Bty to move morning 22 Sep.

1900 - 5 DG Gp incl K Bty across Escaut Canal.

1930 - CCRA visited CRA and requested move of 133 Fd Regt so that they could cover the De Maat br. Orders issued for 133 Fd Regt to move South of area.

2000 -  Coy HQ and two platoons Def Bty RA sent to 81 Fd Regt for local protection.

2100 - 13 Med Regt across Escaut Canal and to move to area Zeelst.

 

22 September 1944: 0200 - Lt Col G.D. Castelli 71 A Tk  Regt NOT seen after leaving for recce. His jeep subsequently found by 81 Fd Regt in area NE of Wintelre having been machine-gunned. Civs report that 2 men taken prisoner. Presumed therefore that Lt Col Castelli Prisoner of War. 133 Fd Regt in action.

0630 - HLI in Oostelbeers and Middelbeers.

0700 - CRA left to visit 71 Inf Bde 81 Fd Regt and 13 Med Regt.

0730 - 23 Hy Bty moving into action.

1000 - 83 Fd Regt moving up to new area Hoogeloon.

1030 - HLI unable to force crossing over br. 5 DG Gp attack not launched.

1015 - Rep from 133 Fd Regt with 1/6 Queens South of Escaut Canal at De Maat br.

1200 - Sitrep.

1400 - 13 Med Regt joined 81 Fd Regt in area Wintelre.

1515 - 23 Hy Bty on theatre grid.

1800 - 71 Inf Bde and 5 Dg plan for clearing Diessen, Esbeek, Hilvarenbeek cancelled.

2300 - 46 Bde 15 (S) Div not in Best.

2359 - Sitrep.

 

23 September 1944: 1115 - 81 Fd Regt fired fire plan in sp 1 Oxf Bucks. Dun captured.

1130 - Egypte reported clear by Recce Regt. One coy E Lan R taking over.

1200 - Sitrep.

1230 - Fireplan in sp of HLI by 81 and 83 Fd Regts and 13 Med Regt cancelled. Attack cancelled owing to enemy infiltration into Middelbeers.

1313 - Enemy reported escaping North from Reusel.

1530 - 160 Inf Bde ordered to push Westwards as enemy retreating North on their front. 133 Fd Regt moving.

1730 - 83 Fd Regt engaged retreating enemy as DF tgts.

1800 - 71 A Tk Regt RHQ moved to Div HQ.

2300 - 53 Welsh Div 00 No 22 issued - mopping up order for 24 Sep.

2359 - Sitrep.

 

24 September 1944: 0415 - Some enemy infiltration - on 158 Inf Bde front. 83 Fd Regt fired on various tgts.

0500 - 81 Fd Regt and 13 Med Regt engaged HF fire tasks area Esbeek, Diessen, Baarschot.

0600 - 160 Inf Bde advancing North to line of road Bladel Voorh??. 133 Fd Regt moved to area South of Egypte.

1000 - CCRA visited CRA and discussed movement of 13 Med Regt and 23 Hy Bty.

1330 - BM RA left for 23 Hy Bty to arrange move fwd of guns to enable Arty R shoot.

1400 - Arrangements completed for Arty R shoot at 1800 hrs by 23 Hy Bty to register two points on 's Hertogenbosch Tilburg rd. HQ RA moved to Eersel arriving 1530 hrs.

1640 - 23 Hy Bty on bty grid area.

Afternoon - Some shelling on 158 Inf Bde front. General signs of withdrawal Northwards on 160 Inf Bde and 158 Inf Bde fronts. Minor counter attacks. Regt engaged various tgts on their bde fronts.

1730 - CCRA telephoned with move orders for 13 Med Regt.

1800 - Arty R shoot cancelled owing to bad weather.

 

25 September 1944: 0500 - HF by 81 & 133 Fd Regts, and 23 Hy Bty.

0600 - 13 Med Regt moved to area Meerveldhoven coming under comd 12 Corps in sp 7 Armd Div

0700 - Small fireplan fired by 133 Fd Regt in sp of 6 RWF in clearance of Reusel. Fireplan stopped when partly fired and attack cancelled.

0800 - RA 12 Corps Operational Notes dated 24 Sep received. Amn restricted to 30 rpg per day Fd and 20 rpg per day Hy.

0815 - Counter attack against 2 Mon. Enemy engaged by 133 Fd Regt.

1045 - Further fireplan in sp of 6 RWF for attack on Reusel fired by 81 and 133 Fd Regts. Attack partially successful.

1350 - Arty R shoot with 25 Hy Bty registered point on 's Hertogenbosch - Tilburg rd. Only one point registered owing to bad visibility.

Afternoon - Some hostile shelling on div front. Counter bombards fired.

1730 - A CBO and det left for 7 Armd Div.

1900 - Small fire plan fired by 133 Fd Regt in sp 4 Welch attack on Reusel. Eastern half of village now clear. Several PW taken. Enemy OP in church tower knocked out by 17 pr.

 

Night 25/26 September 1944: HF by 81 Fd Regt.

 

26 September 1944: 0745 - Further attack by 4 Welch on part of Reusel. Fireplan on call from 133 Fd Regt. Attack postponed until 0835.

Morning - 4 hostile btys engaged by fd regts.

1230 - 133 Fd Regt moving to area Postel.

1635 - 133 Fd Regt new area on regt grid.

1800 - 81 Fd Regt moved.

1820 - 83 Fd Regt fired Red smoke on enemy HQ at Hulsel as tgt indicator for Typhoon aircraft. Attack successful - village on fire.

2230 - Amendment to 53 Div 00 No 23 sent to regts. 158 Inf Bde Gp less 1 E Lan R and 83 Fd Regt to be prepared to move to area Schijndel (coming under comd 7 Armd Div). 27 Sep on orders Div HQ. Bn area Westelbeers being taken over by 4 RWF. Bn area Netersel being taken over by 53 Recce Regt less one sqn. 83 Fd Regt placed in sp 53 Recce Regt and in sp 133 Fd Regt. 71 A Tk Regt to move one 17 pr tp 336 Bty to area 1 E Lan R.

2359 - Sitrep. Intsum.

 

27 September 1944: 0030 - One sec 7 Svy Tp reverted to comd 7 Svy Regt.

0700-0710 - 133 Fd Regt fired DF task and DF (SOS) on front of 4 Welch against enemy infiltration.

Morning - Two hostile btys engaged by 81 Fd Regt and 23 Hy Bty.

1145 - 158 Inf Bde Gp less 1 E Lan R and 83 Fd Regt moved to area Schijndel. 53 Recce Regt less one sqn placed under comd 71 Inf Bde NOT 160 Inf Bde.

Afternoon - 4 Welch withdrawn from Reusel under cover of arty conc by 133 Fd Regt, to enable Reusel to be attacked by air and shelled by 23 Hy Bty. 2 Mon. withdrawn to protect left flank of 43 Welsh Div.

1500 - 23 Hy Bty moved to enable shelling of Reusel to be carried out.

1800 - Air attack on Reusel cancelled.

1830 - 23 Hy Bty carried out three bombardments on Reusel.

2100-0800 - 23 Hy Bty carried out HF on Reusel.

 

28 September 1944: 0600 - 1 E Lan R relieved by 4 Welch in Bladel. 1 E Lan R moving to join 158 Inf Bde in area South of Schijndel.

0800 - Amn restriction increased to 20 rpg 25-pr per day.

0945 - Air attack on Reusel accepted by Second Army. ETA later.

1200 - 8 Typhoons attacked Reusel, followed by bombardment by 23 Hy Regt.

Morning - Some hostile mortars engaged by fd regts.

1500 - 336 A Tk Bty ordered to join 158 Inf Bde under comd 7 Armd Div leaving present area 0800 hrs 29 Sep.

1700 - 23 Hy Bty ceased to be under comd 53 Welsh Div and moved to 7 Armd Div.

 

29 September 1944: 1245 - DRA (Brig WE Duncan CVO) and BRA (Brig J Parham) arrived HQRA and later visited 83 Fd Regt with CRA leaving for 15 (S) Div at 1430.

1300 - 53 Welsh Div Arty under op comd CCRA in sp 53 Welsh Div and under comd 53 Welsh Div for adm and movement. See 12 Corps OP Instr No 19.

1745 - 83 and 133 Fd Regt fired propaganda shells into Reusel.

Day - Little activity on 53 Welsh Div front.

 

30 September 1944: Day - 3 hostile btys engaged.

1800 - CRA visited 158 Inf Bde.

1900 - 53 Highland Div are relieving 15 (S) Div at a time to be notified later. 158 Inf Bde will then be under comd 51 Highland Div.

2245 - Orders received for A Tp 100 R Bty less two dets to move to 7 Armd Div morning 1 Oct ie leaving one det with 53 Welsh Div.

 

1 October 1944: 0830 - One det A tp 100 R Bty left for 7 Armd Div, Tp HQ remaining with 53 Welsh Div on orders CRA.

Morning - Two bombards on hostile btys and two bombards on hostile mortars carried out by div arty.

1435 - CRA visited 158 Inf Bde HQ.

Afernoon - Two hostile btys and two hostile mortars engaged by div arty.

Evening - 44 Bde Gp incl 181 Fd Regt (15 (S) Div) relieved by 153 Bde Gp incl 27 Fd Regt (51 Highland Div).

 

2 October 1944: 0600 - Enemy patrols on 71 Inf Bde front engaged by 83 Fd Regt.

0900 - C Tp 344 SL Bty ceased to be under comd 53 Welsh Div and moved to join 100 AA Bde in area Nijmegen.

Morning - 2 Coys 4 RWF relieved 53 Recce Regt Netersel.  53 Recce Regt conc in Vessel.

1030 - CRA attended Div Comd's O Gp. Plan for attack by 160 Inf Bde to capture Schijndel discussed and subsequently cancelled on arrival of Corps Comd. No major change on 53 (W) Div front. Div to continue holding present line. 4 Welch to move 3 Oct to 158 Inf Bde area under comd 15 (S) Div. Present area (Bladel) to be taken over by 53 Recce Regt who will then be under comd 160 Inf Bde.

1130 - Tp HQ A Tp 100 R Bty moved to 7 Armd Div.

Morning - Two hostile btys engaged by 81 Fd Regt.

1400 - Oirschot church steeple (suspected enemy OP) knocked down by 340 SP A Tk Bty.

Afternoon - Patrolling on 160 Inf Bde front disclosed enemy still in Hulsel.

Evening - 81 and 83 Fd Regts engaged hostile mortars and hostile btys.

2210 - Reports received of enemy Corps HQ, Div HQ and Regt HQ. 'G' requesting them to be dealt with by rocket firing typhoons. If not accepted then HQs will be engaged with HF morning 3 Oct.

2230 - 340 SP A Tk Bty ordered to conc area Bladel reverting comd CRA and placed in sp 53 Recce Regt.

 

Night 2/3 October 1944: 81 & 83 Fd Regts carried out HF on 71 Inf Bde front.

 

3 October 1944: 0600 - Amn restriction increased to 15 rpg per day - 25 pr.

0915 - 4 Welch moved to 158 Inf Bde area.

1030 - 160 Inf Bde patrols reported NO enemy in Reusel and Hulsel appears also to be clear.

1130 - CRA went with GOC to visit 158 Inf Bde.

1300 - Complete withdrawal of enemy on 71 and 160 Inf Bde fronts. HF programme on enemy HQ cancelled.

1600 - 133 Fd Regt moved to be in posn to sp patrols of 160 Inf Bde.

Afternoon - GOC visited 71 Inf Bde and ordered the Bde to move up to line of Wilhelmina Canal with 53 Recce Regt under comd. 81 Fd Regt moving first light 4 Oct to area Middelbeers.

 

4 October 1944: 0015 - Civilians report 50 tks South of 's Hertogenbosch - possible threat to 51 (H) Div. 340 SP A tk Bty ordered to move to 51 (H) Div coming under their comd at 0600 hrs. 340 SP A tk Bty moved approx 0330 hrs.

0200 - 160 Inf Bde Gp ordered to move to area in rear of 51 (H) Div Beel at 0900 hrs.

0800 - 81 Fd Regt moved.

0830 - Recce Regt report that civilians in Hilvarenbeek handed them a note written by Lt Col GD Castelli (71 A tk Regt) stating that he had been taken PW and that he and his dvr were well. NB Lt Col Castelli reported missing - presumed PW 22 Sep.

0845 - 83 Fd Regt ordered out of action.

0850 - CRA left for 83 Fd Regt and 158 Inf Bde.

0930 - 133 Fd Regt moved.

1030 - 160 Inf Bde under comd 51 (H) Div.

1300 - 4 RWF took over from 53 Recce Regt area Hilvarenbeek. 71 Inf Bde now holding line Dun - Hilvarenbeek with 53 Recce Regt in res Diessen. Enemy hold line of stream.

1700 - 83 Fd Regt ordered to move to assist 81 Fd Regt in sp of 71 Inf Bde.

1730 - 81 Fd Regt given authy to expend 160 rds in sp fireplan to assist a bn to tryout new flame throwers.

1825 - 158 Inf Bde attack on Schijndel cancelled.

2320 - 83 Fd Regt in action in area Middelbeers.

 

5 October 1944: 0800 - One sqn Royals under comd 71 Inf Bde.

0900 - Corps Comd visited 53 Welsh Div and discussed relief of 71 Inf Bde.

1100 - CRA left with GOC to visit 158 Inf Bde, 30 Corps and 50 Div.

1230 - RA 53 Welsh Div Opsum No 9 issued to regts. 160 Inf Bde Gp incl 133 Fd Regt 278 and 283 A tk Btys to move to Nijmegen brhd. 5 Oct relieving one bde gp 50 Div 7 Oct. 83 Fd Regt to move to 158 Inf Bde area afternoon 5 Oct to relieve 133 Fd Regt. 81 Fd Regt to remain in present area supporting 71 Inf Bde.

1345 - 133 Fd Regt moved to sp 158 Inf Bde.

1350 - HF tgts received from RA 12 Corps and passed to regts.

1500 - 83 Fd Regt began to move to 158 Inf Bde area.

1600 - Recce parties from units moving to Nijmegen brhd incl 53 Div HQ RV at Grave where they received orders from SO 53 Welsh Div.

1815 - 83 Fd Regt in action supporting 158 Inf Bde.

2200 - 160 Inf Bde Gp move to Nijmegen area 0930 6 Oct to be followed by 53 Div HQ moving to temporary area Grave.

 

6 October 1944: 0200 - 71 Inf Bde less 1 Oxf Bucks under comd 51 (H) Div.

1100 - RA 53 Welsh Div Opsum No 10 issued.

Day - CRA visited 30 Corps and 50 Div with GOC.

1230 - HQ RA left Eersel for Grave arriving at 1700 hrs.

2000 - 133 Fd Regt doubled up with 124 Fd Regt. 160 Inf Bde took over Left sector of future div front. RHQ 71 A tk Regt est.

2330 - 133 Fd Regt on theatre grid.

 

7 October 1944: 0930 - CRA and BM RA left for 50 Div.

1100 - 71 Inf Bde Gp commenced move to 'Island' to take over 151 Bde area.

1145 - HQ RA moved to the 'Island' Oosterhout arriving 1330 hrs. NO shelling took place on Nijmegen br when HQ RA crossed.

1600 - 81 Fd Regt in action: 74 Fd Regt remaining in sp of 151 Bde until such time as 71 Bde take over. 53 Welsh Div took over comd of Eastern sector of Island brhd.

Evening - Several hostile mortars engaged.

1900 - 74 Fd Regt fired DF on front of 151 Bde as possibility of enemy counter attack forming up.

1830 - CCRA arrived with infm that 50 Div were remaining in the 'Island' and would come under comd 12 Corps. 50 Div taking over from Americans forming the central sector of the 'Island' brhd.

1900 - 6 Fd Regt relieving 161 Fd Regt in sp 508 Regt Combat Team.  72 Med Regt in close sp 53 Welsh Div.

2300 - DF Task Table No 1 and Tgt List No 2 issued.

2345 - 53 Div Op Instr No 24 issued.

 

Night 7/8 October 1944: Some mortaring and shelling on front. CB and CM bombards fired.

 

8 October 1944: 0100 - 12 Corps assumed responsibility for 'Island' brhd.

0600 - 71 Bde completed take over of Right sector of div front. 81 Fd Regt in sp.

Morning - CB and CM bombards fired.

1200 - Pivot Gun Coord Trace issued.

1400 - 71 A tk Regt reported that two guns had been overrun on 101 Airborne Div front but that personnel had returned. Guns rendered unserviceable.

1500 - CRA and BM RA attended CCRAs conference at HQ 3 AGRA. COs 53 Div Arty in attendance.

1700 - RA 12 Corps OP Instr No 21 received.

1930 - Amn restriction - Fd 30 rpg per day Med 20 rpg per day.

2000 - RA 53 Welsh Div Task Table No 3 issued. Counter attack plan to recapture AAM and rd junc.

2100 - Hamps took over from 6 RWF.

 

Night 8/9 October 1944: 50 Div took over from US Airborne Forces central sector of the 'Island' brhd. Relief completed by 0600 hrs 9 Oct.

 

9 October 1944: 0930 - 3 Victor tgts fired on 53 Div front on HQs and enemy locations.

1130 - 3 Victor tgts fired on 50 Div front.

Afternoon - Some hostile btys and hostile mortars engaged.

1815 - Counter attack on Left flank of 101 Airborne Div beaten off.

2215 - Hvy shelling on 71 Inf Bde front.

 

Night 9/10 October 1944: A quiet night: nothing to report.

 

10 October 1944: 0900 - Two Uncle tgts fired on div front. Tgts engaged as confusion shoot by firing airburst, smoke and HE.

Morning - Further Victor tgts engaged on Corps front to practise wireless procedure. Tgts probable HQs and Inf localities.

1200 - 4 RHA moved into 'Island' and in action area.

1600 -278 & 283 A tk Btys relievd from 101 US Airborne Div. 283 A tk Bty relieving 129 SP A tk Bty in sp 160 Inf Bde tonight.

1800 - Pivot gun coord trace issued.

2030-2200 - 6 Hostile mortars engaged.

 

Night 10/11 October 1944: A quiet night apart from some shelling in the Elst area about 2300 hrs.

 

11 October 1944: 1400 - 81 and 133 Fd Regts experimented with fuze 222 endeavouring to find fuze correction. Airburst is NOT ranging in accordance with Range Table.

1530-1600 - 5 Uncle tgts engaged at Scale 1.

1600 - Lt Col AW Tyler wounded in the arm (on 324 Bty posn) by shell splinter. Lt Col Tyler evac to CCS for operation prior to being flown back to England.

Evening - Some hostile btys and hostile mortars engaged.

2359 - Int summary.

 

Night 11/12 October 1944: A quiet night. 6 RWF relieved 4 Welsh on 160 Inf Bde front.

 

12 October 1944: 1100 - 116 LAA Regt carried out ground shooting trials observed by Piper Cub OP of 319 US Arty Bn.

1200 - 3 Uncle tgts engaged.

1600 - 4 Victor tgts engaged. Policy for def of Nijmegen brhd.

1630 - Orders for regrouping of the arty within the 'Island' received from 12 Corps. 59 AGRA (less 116 Fd Regt) with 79 Fd Regt move 14 Oct to First Cdn Army. 6 Fd Regt to move 13 Oct  to sp 101 US Airborne Div grouped with 116 Fd Regt. 4 RHA to move 13 Oct to sp 4 Armd Bde Group in area between River Waal and River Maas. CRA arranged for 72 Med Regt to relieve 6 Fd Regt in sp 508 US RCT.

1830 - 151 Bde relieving 231 Bde 50 (N) Div. 53 Recce Regt less one sqn to relieve 61 Recce Regt coming under comd 101 US Airborne Div.

Evening - 3 Hostile mortars and 4 hostile btys engaged.

 

Night 12/13 October 1944: A quiet night apart from engagement of 3 hostile btys.

 

13 October 1944: 1130 - 3 Victor tgts engaged with Corps Arty and two med regts 59 AGRA (30 Corps).

1215 - Tgts - enemy workings and suspected tk harbours on div front.

1200 - RA 53 Welsh Div DF Task Table No 4 and Tgt List No 5 issued.

1330-1430 - 4 Yoke tgts engaged bringing in ground fire from 107 HAA Regt. Tgts included suspected enemy HQs and OP area.

1330 - 4 RHA moved South of River Waal and 6 Fd Regt moved to sp 101 US Airborne Div.

1600 - Enemy tpt reported by 7 Svy Regt in area Pannerden. Engaged by 72 Med Regt with observation by flash spotting Op of 7 Svy Regt at 1700 hrs.

2400 - Uncle tgt fired on suspected enemy HQ.

 

Night 13/14 October 1944: 4 hostile btys engaged on orders CBO.

 

14 October 1944: 0930 - 3 Victor tgts engaged Scale 1, during morning.

1030 - OP 7 Svy Regt reported continuous movement in the area of Pannerden. Suspected that enemy has constructed a br over the river.

Afternoon - 3 Victor tgts fired for 50 (N) Div.

1635 - CB programme fired by 81 and 133 Fd Regts.

2300 - RA 53 Welsh Div Task Table No 6 issued - fireplan for counter attack plan on 160 Bde front.

2330 - Raid carried out by 6 RWF. Fireplan 'Gorilla' on call with CB and CM programme 'Lip' on call. Neihter fireplan called for. Raid produced little infm. No enemy on Right: one enemy post on Left shot up. About 8 to 10 enemy cas.

 

15 October 1944: 1200 - 2 large projectiles landed within ½ mile of Div HQ. Thought to be rocket projectiles. 

1200-1330 - 3 Victor tgts engaged Scale 1, with observation by CRA from 7 Svy Regt OP South of River Waal. Tgts engaged in Pannerden area.

1700 - 3 Yoke tgts including 107 HAA Regt engaged Scale 1. Tgts included enemy localities and suspected HQ, No observation by Air OP owing to bad weather conditions.  83 Fd Regt gun area shelled - one shell fell in comd post and one by cookhouse. Capt MB Davies injured: Lts JGE Holmes and ED Hanley killed. 9 OR killed and 5 OR wounded.

 

Night 15/16 October 1944: Some hostile mortars engaged: otherwise nothing to report.

 

16 October 1944: 1000 - Q conference held by SCRA at Nijmegen. CRA attended.

1400 - 3 Victor tgts fired - observed by CRA.

1600 - CRA visited CCRA 12 Corps.

Afternoon - Some hostile btys engaged.

1830 - CRA returned with warning order for relief of 53 (W) Div and preparatory orders for move to rest area near Grae.

1935 - Orders received from RA 12 Corps. 30 Corps to assume comd of 'Island'

 

17 October 1944: 0100 - 53 (W) Div 00 No 20 sent to units. 53 (W) Div to be relieved by 50 (N) Div. Relief to be completed.

0900 - SCRA left to allocate RA area near Grave.

0930 - CRA left to visit 7 Armd Div and RA 12 Corps.

1030 - 50 (N) Div to assume comd of Eastern sector of 'Island' brhd wef 1300 hrs. Wireless silence to be imposed by fmns and units 53 (W) Div wef time of crossing Nijmegen br.

1130 - 3 Victor tgts fired Scale 1.

Afternoon - 74 Fd Regt relieving 133 Fd Regt: 190 Fd Regt relieving 81 Fd Regt.

1300 - 12 Corps Op Instr No 15 received from RA 12 Corps. Relief of 12 Corps from defences of Island and future ops outlined in Order.

1330 - 53 (W) Div Movement Order No 3 received. 81 and 133 Fd Regts 283/A tk Bty 116 LAA Regt moving to Grave area night 17/18 Oct. 71 A tk Regtless three btys and B/344 SL Bty moving to Grave area night 18/19 Oct.

1530 - HQ RA moved to Schaijk.

2100 - CRA returned from recces. Op as outlined in 12 Corps Op Instrs No 15 amended following Corps Comds revised orders at 1800 hrs. CRA decided upon gun areas for future ops. Trace sent out to units morning 18 Oct.

 

18 October 1944: 0600 -  HQ RA Stood to owing to proximity of enemy.

0800 - 81 and 133 Fd Regts and 71 A tk Regt RHQ and 116 LAA Regt all in conc area North of Schaijk.

1000 - CRA attended Div Comd's conference for Brigs on future ops.

1100 - CRA amended future deployment areas of regts to incl area North of rd Heesch - Broekhoek. BM RA left to contact recce parties with revised orders.

1200 - HQ RA moved to Nistelrode arriving 1330 hrs.

1500 - BM RA attended G conference on future ops.

1800 - Regts reported details of deployment areas.

 

19 October 1944: Morning - Outline plan for OP Alan Phase 1 received from 53 (W) Div. RA 12 Corps Op Instr No 23 for Op Pheasant received. (OP 'Pheasant' includes OPs 'Alan' 'Bob' and 'Colin'). Arrangements made for relief of 5 RHA. 53 Div Arty to deploy night 19/20 Oct: 81 and 133 Fd Regts to be responsible for DF (SOS) fire on front of 22 Armd Bde.

Afternoon - 158 Inf Bde Gp ceased to be under comd 51 (H) Div and moved to join 53 (W) Div in conc area. 83 Fd Regt moving into action in deployment area.

1730 - CRAs conference for offrs down to Bty Comd. Lt Col HS Townend late GSO1 War Office MO7 reviewed War situation on all fronts. Lt Col CV Hill arrives and assumed comd of 81 Fd Regt.

Day - During the day 150 rpg were dumped.

2000-2400 - Fd Regts deployed.

 

Night 19/20 October 1944: Fireplan receivd from 81 and 133 Fd Regts. BM RA engaged on preparation of consolidated fireplan.

 

20 October 1944: 1100 - CRA and BM RA attended CCRAs coordinating conference.

1400 - Pivot Gun Coords and arcs of fire issued.

1800 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Task Table No 1 for OP 'Alan I' issued.

2300 - 53 Welsh Div 00 No 21 for OP 'Alan I' sent to regts.

 

Night 20/21 October 1944: Nothing to report.

 

21 October 1944: 0230 - RA 12 Corps Op Instr No 24 received.

1100 - CRA held conference to coord OP arrangements and future deployment areas.

1130 - RA 12 Corps Consolidated Trace for OP Alan and 1/25000 Def Overprint sent to regts.

1200 - HQ RA moved to Oss.

1600 - HQ 116 LAA Regt moved.

1700 - Wireless silence broken RA nets netted and closed down.

1730 - 12 Corps CB programma 'Poacher' issued to regts for infm. 53 (W) Div Arty NOT involved.

 

22 October 1944: 0220 - Arrangements made for 81 Fd Regt to move one gun fwd to enable them to fire Green Smoke as tgt indicators for RAF Typhoons - in particular Fort Alexander.

0230 - RA wireless nets opened up.

0235 - CB programme 'Proacher' commenced.

0630 - H hr for OP 'Alan I'.

0730 - Attack going well. 160 Inf Bde      2 Mon on Bowl

                                                                4 Welch in Nuland

                                        71 Inf Bde        1 HLI fighting in Nuland

                                                                 4 RWF on Bowl             

0830 - Progress satisfactory. Both Bdes on Cruet except for 1 HLI still fighting in Nuland.

0850 - Air tgts cancelld owing to bad visibility.

0945 - 83 Fd Regt moving one bty fwd to area Schotsheuvel.

1000 - Victor tgt engaged 1240.

1045 - Remainder 83 Fd Regt deployed in new area. 

1100 - 7 Armd Div on line Cruet - fairly stiff opposition in area Middelrode.

1115 - PW gave location of Bn HQ.

1145 - HQ engaged as Victor tgt.

1255 - Sitrep.

1400 - 158 Inf Bde were launched through 160 Inf Bde in Kangaroos.

1600 - 53 Recce Regt held up by mines and bazookas.

1800 - 158 Inf Bde unable to advance and halted between Cruet and Dish. On the Left 71 Inf Bde approximately on the line of Cruet. 1 E Lan R ordered to adv on Bruggen at 2000 hrs.

2000 - Small fireplan fired in sp of E Lan R adv to Bruggen.

2200 - 133 Fd Regt commenced move to new area.

2330 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Tgt List No 2 issued.

2345 - 53 Welsh Div 00 No 22 sent to regts.

2400 - Searchlights exposed to light up Bruggen area.

 

Night 22/23 October 1944: HF on area East of 's Hertogenbosch fired by 83 Fd Regt. 2 Mon occupied Wood without opposition.

 

23 October 1944: 0100 - 51 (H) Div commenced adv North of Schijndel.

0645 - H hr for 71 and 160 Inf Bde further adv to capture objective Pot. No Medium sp for this adv. 83 Fd Regt grouped with 133 Fd Regt in sp 160 Inf Bde: 81 Fd Regt supporting 71 Inf Bde. 71 Inf Bde advancing on Right leaving 4 RWF to adv as best they could without arty sp on the Left.

0930 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Tgt List No 1B issued to regts.

Morning - 81 and 83 Fd Regts deployed in area North of rly.

Day - Adv by 160 and 71 Inf Bdes continued without any heavy opposition. Approx 300 PW taken and by 1800 hrs 2 Mon were on objective Pot and 6 RWF were approaching objective. Fireplan in sp of adv was by concs on call.

1500 - Col Hudson arrived HQ RA to discuss with CRA fireplan in sp 158 Inf Bde in adv on 's Hertogenbosch.

1815 - CRA attended GOC's 'O' Gp at 71 Inf Bde. Orders for 158 Inf Bde to adv at 0230 hrs 24 Oct on 's Hertogenbosch.

1930 - Fireplan in sp 158 Inf Bde for attack issued. RA 12 Corps Op Instr No 25 received. Following arty to sp 53 (W) Div in night adv - RA 7 Armd Div and RA 15 (S) Div: 3 AGRA.

2230 - 53 (W) DIv 00 No 23 sent to regts.

 

24 October 1944: 0030 - Timed concs fired from 0030 to 0223 prior to night attack by 158 Inf Bde.

0230 - H hr for 158 Inf Bde night attack. 1 E Lan R crossed start line.

0245 - Timed fireplan from 0300 to 0405 fired by 53 (W) Div Arty; one fd regt 7 Armd Div; one fd regt RA 15 (S) Div; 4 med and one Hy regt 3 AGRA.

0400 - Concs continued at call by CO 83 Fd Regt.

0600 - 1 E Lan R in area Sout of rly. 1/5 Welch passing through 1 E Lan R to clear up factory area.

0730 - CRA left to visit fd regts.

1000 - 7 RWF and 5 DG in suburbs of 's Hertogenbosch. Night adv a great success - many PW taken.

Afternoon - 160 Inf Bde followed up adv of 158 Inf Bde and 2 Mon est area 's Hertogenbosch.

1400 - HQ RA moved to Nuland

1800 - During afternoon 158 Inf Bde got tps across br but were subsequently pushed back and br was destroyed by enemy. However two coys 7 RWF across canal and est small br hd in town.

1830 - All fd regts moved fwd and deployed in area around Kloosterhoek.

2230 - 53 (W) Div 00 No 25 sent to regts. Tasks for 53 (W) Div 25 Oct - 71 Inf Bde to clear enemy from woods centred (area by-passed by 7 Armd Div) 158 Inf Bde to est class 40 br and subsequently clear town of enemy. 160 Inf Bde to occupy area Orthen.

 

Night 24/25 October 1944: Some HF done in the area Empel and Gewande.

 

25 October 1944: 0330 - 53 (W) Div Op Instr No 26 issued.

0845 - Fireplan in sp of 6 RWF fired by 133 Fd Regt. 6 RWF failed to cross canal owing to strong enemy opposition on West bank.

Morning - Complimentary letter received by CRA from Div Comd on the arty sp for the attack on 's Hertogenbosch. CRA sent letter to all Nos 1 of Fd Regts and letter to Fd Regt Comds.

Day - During the day 's Hertogenbosch was cleared of the enemy as far as the Afwaterings Canal. 53 (W) Div Arty and 63 Med, 53 Hy Regts carried out a number of predicted shoots on enemy escape routes, ferries over the River Maas and prospective gun areas North of River Maas. Fd Regts and 53 Hy Regt also engaged HF tasks throughout the day on similar tgts. Owing to bad visibility Air OP was unable to locate enemy tgts but one shoot was carried out with Hy Bty on a gun posn. Amn expenditure amounted to approx 108 rpg during the day.

2310 - 53 Welsh Div Arty DF Tgt List No 1 issued.

2330 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Opsum No 10 issued.

 

Night 25/26 October 1944: HF carried out by Fd Regts and 53 Hy Regts on enemy crossing places over River Maas and localities North of Maas. Approx 150 rpg fd expended.

 

26 October 1944: Day - 158 Inf Bde est brhd over the canal to the West of 's Hertogenbosch. 1 E Lan R est brhd with sp of fireplan by 81 and 83 Fd Regts firing concs and also a smoke screen on the Left flank of the attack.

Afternoon - 116 LAA Regt deployed four tps to cover brs in Western outskirts of 's Hertogenbosch.

1600 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Tgt List No 2 issued. Answers to WO Questionnaire on Counter Mortar submitted to RA 12 Corps. 53 Hy Regt moved.

1700 - 63 Med Regt in close sp 53 (W) Div moved.

2359 - Sitrep issued.

 

Night 26/27 October 1944: HF carried out by 53 Hy Regt on enemy escape routes in particular on brs and ferries over River Maas.

 

27 October 1944: 0815 - 81 Fd Regt commenced move. 83 Fd Regt reported counter attack by approx 8 tks and 100 Inf on front of 158 Inf Bde. Enemy engaged with arty and mortar fire.

1100 - Enemy counter attack broken up. 5 tks withdrew in a NW direction. 278 A tk Bty claimed one tk knocked out. This is the first tk knocked out by 71 A tk Regt since D-day.

1400 - HQ RA moved to Heer en Beek. 83 Fd Regt moved.

1730 - 133 Fd Regt moved. 338 HAA Bty in sp 53 (W) Div in ground shooting role.

1815 - 53 (W) Div Arty fired small fireplan Texas in sp of 158 Inf Bde. 6 RWF advanced to factory area: 1 E Lan R enlarged their brhd to incl the barracks.

1900 - Ra 12 Corps OP Instr No 26 received.

2000 - Relief of 158 Inf Bde by 160 Inf Bde commenced.

2200 - Pivot gun coords and arcs of fire trace issued.

2300 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Opsum No 11 issued. 53 (W) Div task to clear area bounded by River Maas and AfwateringsCanal.

 

Night 27/28 October 1944: HF carried out on brs and ferries over River Maas and on enemy gun area North of river. Div HQ shelled during night. No cas to HQ RA.

 

28 October 1944: 0530-0730 - Several HBs engaged by Div Arty under direction of CBO.

0830 - 63 Med Regt moved.

1000 - 53 Hy Regt engaged on Arty R shoot registered brs and ferries over River Maas.

1200 - Corps Comd visited Div HQ. Move of 71 Inf Bde to area South of AfwateringsCanal postponed. Representation to be made to the Army Comd to by-pass the water logged area bounded by River Maas and AfwateringsCanal. If still necessary to clear this area then attack will be made from the East.

1530 - HQ RA moved to Nuland.

Afternoon - Several HBs engaged on call from CBO.

2345 - Amendment No 1 to 53 Welsh Div Arty Tgt List No 2 sent to regts following registration of 5 tgts by Arty R during day.

 

Night 28/29 October 1944: HF carried out by Div Arty and 53 Hy Regt.

 

29 October 1944:  0700 - Det 100 R Bty regrouped under comd 53 (W) Div from 15 (S) Div.

0615 - 133 Fd Regt with sp from 81 and 83 Fd Regts fired fireplan 'Allway' in sp 6 RWF factory clearance op area.

1030 - CCRA visited CRA.

Morning - Some Uncle tgts fired on enemy tps. 1 HLI moved South of AfwateringsCanal - remainder of Bde move cancelled.

Afternoon - Arty R shooting carried out with 23/59 Hy Bty.

1730 - Enemy in Empel area engaged by 7.2 Med Bty with observation by 133 Fd Regt.

Day - Ground shooting by 116 LAA Regt in area of factory resulted in enemy cas - 10 killed 17 PW taken.

2200 - 71 Inf Bde Gp ordered to clear all enemy from area South of AfwateringsCanal between 1 HLI present posn and 23 Eastings grid line moving first light 30 Oct. 81 Fd Regt moving to sp 71 Inf Bde.

 

Night 29/30 October 1944: HF carried out by Div Arty.

 

30 October 1944: 0615 - 81 Fd Regt moved to sp 71 Inf Bde.

0830 - 63 Med Regt ceased to be in sp 53(W) Div.

Morning - UTT fired by 83 and 133 Fd Regts in sp 158 Inf Bde plan to extend Southern part of br hd.

1130 - CRA in consulation with Div Comd when warning order received for move of Div by bde gps to East of Bree.

1300 - Warning order sent to regts of move. 158 Inf Bde Gp incl 83 Fd Regt to move as soon as tp carrying vehs available. 71 Inf Bde Gp to move probably first light 31 Oct followed by Div HQ. 160 Inf Bde Gp remain present area until relieved by bde gp 51 (H) Div.

116 LAA Regt being relieved of def  's Hertogenbosch by one bty 71 LAA Regt. 338 Hy AA Bty and 53 Hy Regt remaining in sp 160 Inf Bde.

1630 - 83 Fd Regt began move South being ordered to halt at Eindhoven and join in with 158 Inf Bde coln when it passed.

1900 - LO sent to contact 83 Fd Regt and order them to continue move.

2000 - Regrouping orders received from RA 12 Corps. B/653 Air OP Sqn and B/344 SL Bty remaining under comd 53 (W) Div. Det 100 R Bty placed under comd 7 Svy Regt.

2015 - Bombardment policy North and NW of 's Hertogenbosch to continue under direction of CBO.

2300 - 53 (W) Div OP Instr No 27 sent to regts.

 

31 October 1944: 0700 - RA Gp consisting of 71 A tk Regt less three btys, 116 LAA Regt and B/344 SL Bty commenced passing SP.

1030 - HQ RA commenced move to Bocholt.

1130 - 81 Fd Regt commenced move from present area.

1500 - HQ RA arrived new location.

Day - CRA met CCRA 8 Corps and visited US Armd Div and Belgian Bde.

1800 - 4 RHA and Belgian Arty under comd 53 (W) Div. LO sent to US 7 Armd Div as link from HQ RA.

 

  

The first seven days of February were spent preparing for OP Veritable. The CRA and COs were recceing North of the Maas or planning every day.

53 Welsh Div Arty was to occupy posns superimposed on 2 Cdn Div Arty area.

2 Cdn Div Arty  were responsible for preparing the gun posns, doing the survey and dumping the amn. They had to do this because NO 53 Welsh Div tpt was permitted to cross the Maas.

 

1 February 1945: 1000 - 53 Welsh Div Arty CM Exercise 'Blower II' held.

1500 - Object was to practice comns. Exercise Instrs att as.

1800 - RA 30 Corps "Tablecloth" shewing allotment of arty for Veritable received.

1900 - 53 Welsh Div Mov Order No 9 received. This contained instrs for move of 53 Welsh Div to conc area South of Nijmegen for OP Veritable.

Weather: Cloudy with occasional rain - fair in the evening.

 

2 February 1945: 1500 - CRA held a conference for all COs to discuss OP Veritable. COs were issued with 53 Welsh Div Arty OP Order  No 23 of 2 Feb.

Weather: Cloudy with occasional rain and drizzle.

 

3 February 1945: 0900 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Trace shewing mine clearance plan and future regt area for OP Veritable issued.

1000 - RA 30 Corps OP Instr No 32 received. This explained arty plan.

1100 - Lt Col EH Walter, CO 25 LAA Regt attended conference at HQ RA 2 Cdn Corps to discuss LAA part in OP Veritable.

1800 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Adm Instr No 1 of 3 Feb issued to regts.

2000 - RCA 2 Cdn Div Task Table for OP Veritable "Pepperpot" received. This involved 25 LAA Regt.

Weather: Weather fair in the  morning. Occasional showers during day - cloudy in the evening.

 

Night 3/4 February 1945: 81, 83, 133 Fd Regts moved to conc area in Nijmegen during night.

 

4 February 1945: 4 Feb brought very good news for the Div Arty. Brig JC Friedberger, CRA 53 Welsh Div had been awarded the DSO.

1100 - Div Comd addressed all available offrs of the Div on OP Veritable, in the Century cinema Helmond.

1500 - CRA and BM RA attended CCRAs coordinating conference at HQ RA 30 Corps.

1800 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Adm Order no 1 issued. 53 Welsh Div 00 No 27 received and issued to regts.

Weather: Cloudy with continuous rain in the morning; drizzle in the afternoon.

 

5 February 1945: 1100 - 53 Welsh Div Arty OP Instr No 24 issued. This gave outline plan for OP Veritable.

1600 - 53 Welsh Div Arty letter RA 201/2 of 5 Feb issued. This explained use of yellow smoke to shew barrage lifts.

Weather: Cloudy with intermittent rain.

 

6 February 1945: 0130 - 53 Welsh Div Arry message RAO 201 issued. This gave details of move of 25 LAA Regt and 71 A Tk Regt.

1100 - CRA addressed all offrs of fd regts at HQ 133 Fd Regt in Nijmegen, on OP Veritable.

2200 - CRA held final coordinating conference at HQ 133 Fd Regt for all COs.

2300 - HQ RA left Nuenen for Molenbeek. The roads were blocked with traffic and there were many detours owing to roads having collapsed. The move took 7 hrs.

Weather: Cloudy with slight rain and showers in the morning. Fair generally.

 

7 February 1945: 0100 - 25 LAA Regt moved to Nijmegen.

0145 - 71 A Tk Regt moved to Nijmegen.

0700 - HQ RA est at Molenbeek.

1600 - BM RA addressed all ranks HQ RA on OP Veritable and read personal messages from the C-in-C and Army Comd to them.

1800 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Task Table No 1 in sp of 71 Inf Bde adv in Reichswald Forest 8 Feb issued.

1900 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Task Table No 2 in sp of 160 Inf Bde attack through Reichswald Forest 8 Feb issued.

2359 - 53 Welsh Div Arty now ready for H hr for OP Veritable and disposed. The complete Corps Fire Plan had been issued to regts. It was the result of four weeks intensive planning by the Staffs of HQ RA 30 Corps and HQ RA 53 Welsh Div.

Weather: Cloudy with slight drizzle.

 

8 February 1945: 0200 - Wireless Silence broken.

0500 - Pre-bombardment and CB programme commenced. Lt Col REH Hudson, CO 83 Fd Regt occupied OP at Groesbeek and acted as CRAs rep to control barrage.

0740-0750 - Pause in CB and Pre-bombardment programme to enable sound rangers to obtain locations of remaining active enemy guns.

0930 - Div Arty started firing on opening line of Barrage.

1030 - H hr - barrage commenced movind fwd. A new method of indicating lifts was used by firing yellow smoke at the end of each lift. Informed that this worked very well and conveyed the right idea to the inf who followed close up to the barage.

1050 - Report from CO 81 Fd Regt received that 7 tks and flails bogged. Inf going on.

1210 - 4 RWF  on objective. Bridging commenced.

1250 - 81 Fd Regt moved fwd to new area West of Reichswald Forest.

1500 - 81 Fd Regt ready on theatre grid.

1600 - 53 Welsh Div Arty state as follows: - Cdn Fd Regt recce parties ordered to filter fwd;

                                                                     81 Fd Regt in second posn;

                                                                     83 and 133 Fd Regts in first posn. Recce parties fwd

1800 - 71 Inf Bde on objective.

2000 - 133 Fd Regt started to move.

2300 - 83 Fd Regt ceased firing.

8 February was a record day for Div Arty who fired 35,593 rounds.

Weather: Fair. Cloudy with slight showers.

 

9 February 1945: 0045 - 160 Inf Bde completely into the Reichswald  Forest ready to adv. H hr 0100.

0150 - 2 Mon and 4 Welch on Start Line in Reichswald Forest. 6 RWF advanced 1000 yards.

0200 - 158 Inf Bde moved through 71 Inf Bde to Start Line.

0215 - 51 Northing grid line is No firing line with RA 51 (H) Div.

0300 - 71 A Tk Regt and 25 LAA Regt ordered to provide one offr and one hundred men each for road making.

0500 - 113 Fd Regt in action. 83 Fd Regt still not allowed to move.

0730 - 160 Inf Bde were nearly through Reichswald Forest and rached 85 Easting grid.

0845 - 4 Welch reported to be meeting by opposition.

0930 - 133 Fd Regt reported enemy gun. Engaged by 9 AGRA Scale 2.

0945 - CO 81 Fd Regt reported enemy guns. Engaged as Uncle tgt Scale 5.

1025 - 160 Inf Bde reported opposition slight, but going very hard.

1130 - 160 Inf Bde had taken 160 PW to date and reached map square.

1155 - 15 (S) Div reported to be keeping pace with adv of 53 Welsh Div.

1200 - 160 Inf Bde through Reichswald Forest in North.

1400 - 53 Welsh Div Op Instr 42 received and issued to regts. This outlined Div ops for 9 and 10 Feb.

1425 - Tks seen moving North. Engaged as Uncle tgt.

1455 - 19 Cdn SP Fd Regt reported that 34 Armd Bde had taken 150 PW - mostly from 184 Arty Regt. PW reported that all but four of their guns had been destroyed. This infm passed to CBO.

1705 - 83 Fd Regt deploying square.

1750 - 72 Med Regt now under comd 53 Welsh Div.

1800 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Sitrep (RAC 31) issued to regts.

2200 - A large conc of enemy reported in Gennep. In order to discourage them from raiding across the river Maas in to 9 AGRA gun area 30 Corps Arty fired Victor tgt Scale 5 on this town once an hr for the next four hrs.

2230 - 15 (S) Div reported that their recce regt was patrolling into Cleve and meeting no opposition.

Weather: Fair with accasional slight showers.

 

Night 9/10 February 1945: A quiet night. 43 Div passed through 15 (S) Div.

 

10 February 1945: 0100 - In view of possible future ops CRA decided to withdraw arty out of the bog in which they were deployed. He sent the following message to the fd regts: - "Shooting on D day was absolutely excellent. I consider that is was a very fine effort deploying in the dark last night and tonight".

1000 - 133 Fd Regt prepared to move.

1630 - 133 Fd Regt moved to harbour area in Groesbeek to await instrs to move.

1800 - 43 Div reported that owing to road blockage they had been unable to adv as planned, and that enemy had counter attack with a few Tiger tks at 1400 hrs and penetrated their fwd area, but that the counter attack had been sealed off.

1935 - 51 (H) Div had reache square.

2300 - 53 Welsh Div Op Instr No 43 received and issued to regts. This outlined div plan for clearing remainder of Reichswald Forest.

Today the Div was not very active. The Div Arty spent most of the day firing in sp of 15 (S) and 51 (H) Divs.

Weather: Cloudy with occasional showers.

 

11 February 1945: 0100 -  Offr from 81 Fd Regt sent to HQ RA 43 Div as rep.

0200 - 53 Welsh Div Sitrep no 238 received.

0800 - 133 Fd Regt ready on theatre grid. They were the first regt of 53 Welsh Div Arty to deploy in Germany.

158 Inf Bde put in an attack today to clear SE through the Reichswald Forest.

0900 - 86 Fd Regt now under comd 53 Welsh Div.

1100 - HQ RA moved to Groesbeek.

1135 - 158 Inf Bde progressing slowly. Opposition light but tracks were bad. 160 Inf Bde attacking to clear due East of the Reichswald Forest to 91 Grid line.

1400 - 15 (S) Div reported one bde engaged in fighting in Cleve.

2000 - 15 (S) Div reported still an enemy pocket in Cleve. Enemy a tk gun. Engaged as Victor tgt.

2300 - 53 Welsh Div 00 No 28 received and issued to regts. This dealt further with clearing of Reichswald Forest.

Weather: A showery day - very dull.

 

12 February 1945: 0100 - 133 Fd Regt reported that amn had not yet arrived. SCRA and RASC amn offr went out ot investigate the matter.

0130 - 53 Welsh Div Sitrep no 239 received.

0245 - 133 Fd Regt reported amn had now arrived.

0630 - LO sent to RA 43 Div to collect copy of fire plan in which div arty to take part.

0715 - RA 43 Div reported tps advanced

0800 - RA 43 Div Task Tables Nos 7 & 8 received.

0900 - 2 Mon reported they had pushed fwd during night. 81 Fd Regt ordered to conc area Groesbeek.

1020 - Enemy SP bty. Engaged as Victor tgt on behalf of RA 15 (S) Div.

1000 - 86 Fd Regt placed under comd 15 (S) Div.

1100 - 83 Fd Regt moved.

1300 - Enemy counter attacking on 43 Div front but everything under control. 15 (S) Div identified 116 Pz Div - area Cleve.

1500 - Tiger tks engaged as Uncle tgt on behalf of 15 (S) Div.

2300 - 53 Welsh Div 00 No 29 received. This dealt with clearing remaining pockets of resistance in the Reichswald Forest.

2359 - Trace shewing present and future disposns of Div Arty issued.

Weather: Cloudy, with occasional rain.

 

13 February 1945: 0115 - Data for barrage and conc in sp 71 Inf Bde attack received from CO 81 Fd Regt.

0130 - 19 Cdn SP Fd Regt deployed.

0200 - CO 112 Fd Regt and Comd 130 Inf Bde visited HQ RA. 112 Fd Ret and 130 Inf Bde now under comd of 43 Welsh Div.

0300 - 53 Welsh Dib Sitrep No 241 received.

0600 - 53 Welsh Div Arty barrages U 7204, U 7205 and U 7206 in sp 71 Inf Bde issued.

0610 - DR sent to RA 43 Div for fire plan.

0730 - RA 30 Corps informed that 81 Fd Regt and 72 Med Regt out of range. Vital that they be moved today.

0915 - CMO 53 Welsh Div moved fwd to Frasselt (Germany).

1100 - 9 AGRA with two btys of 3 Super Hy Regt moved - would be able to sp 53 Welsh Div.

1235 - 53 Welsh Div Arty message RAO 36 issued re state of roads in Div area.

1335 - Enemy strong point - engaged as Uncle tgt Scale 3.

1730 - Air OP reported enemy guns - infm passed to CBO.

1740 - 2ICs recces posns and reported that there was only room for one fd regt.

1750  81 Fd Regt moved.

2230 - 15 (S) Div reported six enemy tks and 100 inf.

Weather: Cloudy. Fair at first but drizzle and occasional rain later in the day.

 

14 February 1945: 0045 - LO sent to Tac HQ 43 Div to collect fire plan.

0100 - 53 Welsh Dib Sitrep No 243 received.

0840 - Uncle tgt fired in sp of 15 (S) Div.

1000 - 133 Fd Regt moved. RA 43 Div Task Table No 10 received.

1040 - Red smoke fired by 133 Fd Regt to indicate tgt for Typhoons (which did not arrive!).

1400 - 83 Fd Regt moved. 53 Welsh Div Arty to fire fire plan at 1500 hrs in sp of 15 (S) Div attack and fire plan at 1800 hrs in sp of 43 Div attack.

1600 -  72 Med Regt moved. 122 Fd Regt ceased to be under comd 53 Welsh Div.

1700 -  Air OP reported four guns firing - engaged as Uncle tgt.

2100 - 53 Welsh Div Arty Task Table No 3 issued (grouping and allotment of DF tasks). Trace shewing pivot gun posns and arcs of fire as issued.

Ever since OP Veritable began 71 A tk Regt and 25 LAA Regt have provided one offr and one hundred and fifty men daily for making roads - extremely important work in this operation.

53 Welsh Div Arty spent day firing in sp 15 (S) Div and 43 Div.

Weather: A dull day but no rain.

 

15 February 1945: 0230 - 53 Welsh Div Sitrep No 244 received.

0800 - RA 30 Corps OP Instr No 3 received.

0900 - 56 Cdn A tk Bty now under comd 51 (H) Div.

1410 - 15 (S) Di reported enemy forming up for counter attack - engaged as Victor tgt.

1740 - A/356 SL Tp now under comd 15 (S) Div.

2100 - Trace shewing pivot gun posns and arcs of fire as issued. Regts warned that they would be engaged in big fire plan in sp 158 Inf Bde attack on 16 Feb.

Div Arty spent most of the day firing in sp 15 (S)  and 43 Divs.

Weather: Cloudy, but no rain.

 

16 February 1945: 0230 - 53 Welsh Div Sitrep No 246 received.

0700 - 81 Fd Regt moved.

0925 - During night 15 (S) div reached .

1430 - HQ RA moved to Frasselt - our first HQ in Germany. Leading veh crossed the frontier into Germany at 1445 hrs. The new HQ was a badly damaged house. Many people slept under canvas.