|Instructions regarding War Diaries and Intelligence
Summaries are contained in F.S. Regs., Vol. 1.
and the Staff Manual respectively Title pages
will be prepared in manuscript.
|Army Form C.2118|
|Unit: 1 Worcestershire Regiment|
|Month and Year: March 1945||(Erase heading not required).||Commanding Officer: Lt. Col. M.R.J. Thomson MC|
|1||Quiet Night. Some patrolling, very slight shelling.|
|2||Quiet night and day.|
|3||Quiet night and day. Received warning order to prepare to move on 4th. "O" Gp. 19.00 hrs. Orders issued for operation to seize and hold VYNEN.|
|VYNEN||4||Recce party moved off at 07.15 hrs. Marching tps followed at 08.15 hrs. Carrier Pl reached Vynen, taking 3 PW's and reported it clear by 10.30 hrs. "C" Coy following up took up positions area x rds (GOCH - VYNEN). "B" Coy passed through into Vynen. Bn. HQ established at HAAG. "A" Coy then passed through and took up defensive positions, eastern edge of Vynen and "D" Coy in centre of village in area of church. Some shelling in Bn. area.
During the night a strong fighting patrol led by Lieut. Stride, went to WARDT with the object of finding out the strength and disposition of the enemy. On approaching Western edge of WARDT patrol was engaged by MG and withdrew. Unfortunately Lieut. Stride was missing and later found dead.
|5||"O" Gp at 09.30 hrs when provisional orders were issued for the capture of WARDT and recce patrols were ordered to recce the gap in road and also to find out if WARDT was still occupied. At 11.30 hrs recce patrol from "D" Coy reported WARDT clear, and at 13.30 hrs "C" Coy on right and "B" Coy on left advanced on WARDT and were in position by 14.30 hrs. Static patrols were established on the banks of the RHINE and Bn. achieved the honour of being the first British Inf tps in the Liberation Army to have a 'Watch on the Rhine'.|
|6||The difficult task of evacuating 500 civvies was undertaken and completed by 17.00 hrs. Reorganisation of the Bn. defences was completed with two forward Coys and Mortar Pl in WARDT. "D" Coy left rear with Carrier PL and "A" Coy unchanged. Slight shelling of Bn. area. During the night "B" Coy sent strong recce patrol to GUT GRINDT to check whether any stragglers were still in that area. Patrol reported 27 civs but no soldiers.|
|7||Our Arty engaged opportunity targets on Eastern bank of the RHINE. Slight enemy shelling chiefly on area WARDT Church.|
|WARDT||8||During the night 5 Wilts concentrated in Bn area and at first light launched an attack on LUTINGDEN passing their P.W. through us. Very heavy stonking of WARDT during the morning caused no casualties to the Bn.|
|9||Quiet day. At 21.00 hrs "B" Coy standing patrol relief received direct hit by shell - 2 killed and 3 injured. Escort provided by us for R.E. Offr to recce river bank. Supporting arms were withdrawn from Bn. area.|
|10||0900||"B" Coy and "C" Coy established Traffic Control posts at two main entrances to WARDT so as to reduce movement in Bn area.|
|10||1800||Received warning order for Bn Recce Party and Advance Party to proceed to Bde Conc. Area AFFERDEN next morning. Our Arty engaged targets on Eastern bank of Rhine especially suspected and known enemy O.P's.|
|11||0900||Bn recce and advance parties moved off to new area.|
|11||1600||2 i/c of relieving Bn arrived.|
|11||2200||Orders issued for Bn relief and movement to new area next morning. Accurate enemy shelling on churches at VYNEN and WARDT, otherwise quiet day.|
|AFFERDEN||12||0400||6 H.L.I. commenced relief of Bn which was completed without mishap by 06.30 hrs. Bn moved off in small blocks at 10 minute interval, commencing 08.30 hrs. A long halt was made south of XANTEN - GOCH X-rds. Bn moved off 13.00 hrs and was complete in AFFERDEN area by 17.30 hrs. The conc. area was badly damaged and bulk of Rifle Coys were under canvas.|
|13||Baths, ENSA show and training, and general tidy up of Bn area, which was badly needed.|
|14||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema.|
|15||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema.|
|16||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema.|
|17||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema.|
|18||Rest. Voluntary Church Parades. At an investiture Maj. J. D. Ricketts was awarded the D.S.O. and Sjt. R. F. Edwards and Pte. Dayus were awarded the M.M.|
|19||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema.
C.O. Lt.-Col. M. R. J. Hope-Thomson M.C. proceeded on U.K. leave and Maj. G. G. Reinhold M.C. 2 i/c of Bn assumed command.
|20||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema.|
|21||Training, Baths, ENSA show and Cinema. While practising rafting Sigs 15 cwt truck struck "R" mine, fortunately no casualties resulted.|
|AFFERDEN||22||Exercise to practice Bn moving into a marshalling area, crossing obstacle and regrouping tactically the other side.|
|23||I.O. attended Div Conference of I.O's. Coy Comds attended conference at Bde.|
|24||0930||"O" Gp held. Op TURNSCREW movement order No. 1 issued. Orders received that Bn would be at 2 hrs notice to move as from 11.00 hrs 25th.||Appendix "A"|
|25||Previous orders cancelled and Bn placed at 2 hrs notice as from 18.00 hrs. This was also cancelled and from "O" Gp held at 18.00 hrs it was learned that no move was on before 05.45 hrs of the 26th.|
|26||Bn left AFFERDEN at 16.00 hrs for area MARIENBAUM where it arrived at 20.00 hrs. Bn was at 20 mins notice preparatory to crossing of the Rhine.|
|S. of ANHOLT||27||0345||Bn left MARIENBAUM and crossed the RHINE, proceeding to conc. area ESSERDEN (0653) where it arrived at 05.30 hrs. Bde "O" Gp at 09.00 hrs. Bn "O" Gp at 10.15 hrs when C.O. gave orders for Bn attack through 129 Bde to cut and seize stretch of Autobahn at 095590 - 091588. Attack was timed for 14.00 hrs in conjunction with a similar attack by 51 Div on our immediate right. Attack commenced on time with "D" Coy left fwd Coy and "A" Coy right fwd Coy. "A" Coy immediately encountered intense enemy M.G. fire, so heavy in fact that at 14.40 hrs they were still on the start line. "D" Coy meanwhile were steadily pushing forward, also encountering heavy M.G. fire. The autobahn - a raised road proved a difficult objective since it commanded a perfect view of the flat ground over which our Coys were advancing and this was made even more difficult by the fact that each house and copse en route to it contained an M.G. However, after magnificent fighting, our Coys were on the autobahn - "D" Coy left fwd, "A" Coy right fwd, "C" Coy centre and "B" Coy in reserve. Throughout the attack enemy shelling was fairly intense, yet it caused comparatively few casualties, the main casualties being by M.G's. 2 i/c "A" Coy, Capt. F. F. Lawson M.C. killed. It was not until approx 17.00 hrs that it was learned that 51 Div whose attack should have started at the same time as ours, was only just about to begin.|
|S. of ANHOLT||28||On further instructions from Bde Comd. the C.O. gave orders for "C" and "B" Coys to pass through fwd Coys over the autobahn and to clear and consolidate in the fwd edge of the woods immediately to our front. This was commenced at first light and no contact was made although numerous P.W's. were taken, they having deserted and hidden away in the woods. Bn now as follows:- "C" Coy right fwd, "B" Coy left fwd, "D" Coy left rear and "A" Coy right rear in original posn on autobahn.|
|29||No move. 8 Armd Bde passed through us.|
|30||1000||Bde "O" Gp where orders were issued for operation "FORRARD ON".
Bn "O" Gp was held at 12.00 hrs when C.O. issued instructions. "FORRARD ON" was an operation planned to exploit the success of the crossing of the Rhine and to seize BREMEN. Bn reorganised in preparation for the operation.
C.O. Lt.-Col. M. R. J. Hope-Thomson rejoined the Bn from U.K. leave.
|S. of ANHOLT||31||Operation commenced. Bn moved off at 08.30 hrs embussed. 214 Bde Gp behind 129 Bde Gp. Advance very slow and at 11.35 hrs Bn curled up on axis South of SINDEREN, leading tps having been held up by large crater.
Bde "O" Gp at 19.00 hrs where orders received that 214 Bde Gp would by-pass 129 Bde Gp, return to main axis and continue advance. This to take place soon after first light tomorrow.
|31||1930||C.O. and C.O. "B" Coy (leading Coy) went out to recce route to SINDEREN and then returned to Bde "O" Gp at 20.15 hrs where final instructions were issued and it was learned that Bde Gp led by 1 Worc R would move off at 06.30 hrs tomorrow.
Bn "O" Gp at 22.00 hrs.
Helaas geen map gevonden.
Source: The Worcestershire Regiment.
Disclaimer: This War Diary is based on its original, but typos might be corrected. Locations are calculated, so might not be in the correct place. For historical research, always check the originals.