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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.

WAR DIARY
or
INTELLIGENCE SUMMARY
Army Form C.2118
Unit: 4th Tk Bn Coldm Gds.
Month and Year: September 1944 (Erase heading not required). Commanding Officer: Lt. Col. A.W.A. Smith
Place Date Hour Summary Reference
FLERS 1-5   The Battalion remained in its harbour area one mile South of FLERS. Walking out was allowed in FLERS, daily, and the monotony was further releived by ENSA Shows, films and trips to LAVAL. Several Officers made trips to ANGERS and MONT ST. MICHEL. Several expeditions were made to the area between TRUN and CHAMBORS where the Germans had abondoned quantities of equipment of all kinds. The Signal Officer came back with numerous field telephones and a wireless Staff car. The L.A.D. found an excellent welding plant. The most ambitious bit of salvage attempted was by Captain Tennent, I.O., E.M.E. and a number of fitters, who spent several days working on Panthers with a view of starting a Troop of Panthers in the Bn. The scheme was eventually abondoned on the 6th Sept. but only after Captain Tennent had driven one Panther half way back to FLERS.
4   The Battalion played FLERS at football. A very large crowd gathered to see the Battalion best the Frenchmen by 4 goals to 1.
FLERS 4   The move of the entire Bde to the area MORGNY and FONTENAY, 20 miles East of the Seine – which was planned for the 5 Sep was cancelled as every available vehicle was required to carry supplies to our rapidly advancing armoured units. The Bn assisted inhtis vital work by providing nearly allits 3 tonners to carry petrol and ammunition forward. 3 mark VIIs arrived and were allotted to Squadrons.
6   The move to the East of het Seine being temporarily impossible the Brigadier decided to move the Brigade without transporters another 40 miles further East.
7   'A' and 'B' Echs left at 2027 and drove throughout the night, arriving in new area at 0530 on the 8th Sept 44. No restrictions were placed on the use of lights. The tanks left at 0700 in blocks of about 22 tanks.
ALMENCHES 7   They arrived in their first harbour area at 1400 hrs near ALMENCHES.
VEREUIL 8   The tks continued on their journey at 0200 hrs and reached their second harbour area, en route to new location at 1000 hrs which was located near VEREUIL.
8   The remainder of the Bn who had arrived spent the day settling in.
GRAVERON-SOMERVELL 9   The tks arrived in new location and joined rest of Bn at a small village (GRAVERON-SOMERVELL) about 4 miles South of LE NEUBOURG. The Sqns. were mostly in and around farm buildings. HQ Sqn and Bn HQ. were very comfortably settled in an annexe to the chateux belonging to the Marquis de Percival. The trucks were again sent off to form what were really RASC Platoons for the transporting of supplies to the forward formations.
10   After a drive of nearly 50 miles it was decided to spend the day on a weekly parade in spite of it being Sunday. HQ Sqn officers entertained the Marquis de Percival and his family to dinner, afterwards the party retired to the chateux for dancing and music. Captain J.G.H. Barton attached to 8 Corps to look after Corps HQ tanks.
11-12   Normal activities.
13   The Battalion made another move forward of about 40 miles this involved crossing the river Ure at LOUVIERS and the Seine at LES ANDLEYS. Owing to the shortage of transport in the Brigade all trucks from the other Bns and services in the Brigade were pooled for the moving of each Bn in turn. HQ Sqn and Bn HQ were harboured in and about the farm building of a large farm just of the main ROUEN – PARIS rd between ECOUIS and GRAINVILLE. The other Sqns were about 1˝ miles away in village of VILLEREST. Good use was made of any empty cottages, farms or barns and No 3 were lucky enough to have their Officers' Mess in a farm house where electric light was installed and working.
14-16   Normal routine and maintenance of tanks.
17   Church Parade. German classes started. Talk by Capt P. Fraser on current Ops.
18   Capt C.G. Tennent attached to 8 Corps as L.O. to U.S. Army.
19   Film show given to Bn.
20-23   Normal routine. At last it appears we will soon be moving as it is roumered that Transporters are being found for us.
23   Many Officers took part in a Boar Hunt, in the FORET DE LYONS, using rifles. Major Morton bagged a hare and the honour of killing a very fine 16 point Stag was claimed by at least 3 officers. The Band of the Life Guards gave a concert to the Bn during the afternoon. In the evening a Smoking Concert was held for the Sgts in a large barn, the Life Guards Band again played and with a fair quantity of beer obtained by Capt R.F. Norman it all seemed like “old times”.
24   An All Ranks Dance was held in the SALLE de FETE at LOUVIERS. About 900 people were present. In spite of the language difficulty with the French girls a great many Guardsmen were observed to be “doing all right”.
25   At last we are on the eve of a move to a battle area. The advance party left for the EINDHOVEN area at 0900 hrs.
26   Tanks loaded on to transporters prior to move next day. “B” vehs returned to Bn.
27   Wheels and tanks left for new area.
28   Wheels arrived new area in the outskirts of EINDHOVEN. The trucks were parked in the streets and all personnel were billeted in houses or schools. The Dutch people were more than willing to help and make us comfortable. The only troube was the vast horde of children who clamoured round every vehicle whenever and wherever it halted.
29   Tracks arrived at about 1800 hrs and continued to come in until about 2200 hrs they too were parked in roads near the houses in which the men were billeted. The tanks were re-routed for the last part of their journey and came up the main rd from HASSELT to EINDHOVEN as another unit was using theother rd. everyone was most comfortable and it was a great change for all to sleep in a real bed again.
30   Our billet and general comfort was too good to last and today the whole Bn moved to ST HUBERT and harboured in and around the village.

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Source: Jeroen Koppes, TracesOfWar.com.

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.