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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.

Army Form C.2118
Unit: The Royal Dragoons
Month and Year: October 1944 (Erase heading not required). Commanding Officer: Lt.Col. H.W. Lloyd
Place Date Hour Summary Reference
FIELD 1   N.T.R.
2   N.T.R. Considerable regrouping taking place, resulting in the thinning out of our forces on the TILBURG sector and the concentrating of large forces in the NIJMEGEN area.
3   'A' Sqn maintained contact between left of 71 Bde (53 Div) and right of 49 Div (1 Corps) in area POPPEL E.1219 and HILVARENBEEK E.1923, 6 miles South of TILBURG. RHQ with 'C' and 'D' Sqns in reserve in area VELDHOVEN. 'B' Sqn still in area SE of NIJMEGEN opposite REICHSWALD FOREST under command 505 R.C.T. of 82 US Airborne Division. They have four static patrols out, all of which have been experiencing fairly heavy shelling. One patrol is in BEEK 7660, which is just over the border into GERMANY. Resting Sqns able to visit EINDHOVEN for Cinemas, Ensa Shows and baths.
4   'A' Sqn came directly under command 71 Bde and continued same job in HILVARENEEEK area.
5   In the morning 'A' Sqn still under command 71 Bde. In afternoon they came back under command of the Regt, and RHQ moved up to VESSEM E.2916 to take over the whole sector between the left of 51 (H) Div at BEST and the right of 49 Div in area POPPEL. 'C' Sqn took over the sector along the WILHELMINA CANAL from the right of 'A' Sqn as far East as the 32 Easting. One Sqn of RAF Regt, now under command, are in position from the right of 'C' Sqn along the S bank of the Canal as far as our right boundary and covering the Aerodrome at EINDHOVEN. 'B' Sqn of 53 Recce Regt is also under our command. Major J.E.R. Bowlby leaves to take up his appointment as G.2 Liaison, 21 Army Group, BRUSSELS. Major Balfour sent to command force of 36 Humberettes which constitute part of the Sqn of RAF Regt on our right.
6   53 Div are withdrawn from the line and the Regt is now entirely responsible for the whole of this sector of the front and under command 51 (H) Div. 'D' Sqn is put into the line between 'C' and 'A' Sqns in the area between MIDDLEBEERS 2721 and DIESSEN 2222. All patrols were intermittently shelled, mortared and machine gunned throughout the day, and kept very active. We replied with as much shellfire as possible in order to give the impression of greater strength. All three Squadrons had patrols out during the night; an unusual role for an Armd Car Regt.
7   During the night a small enemy patrol approached one of the RAF Regt's outposts. A Cpl dashed back to the Airfield with the alarming report that 50 to 100 enemy had broken through. A considerable "flap" ensued. The report of this reached the ears of the C-in-C during the day and had the satisfactory effect of producing a Bde of Infantry to take over that sector of our front. An O.P. from A.G.R.A., 1 Corps, arrived with 'A' Sqn. Considerable shellfire was put down on enemy positions in their area and 11 Germans were persuaded to give themselves up. They were from 937 Regt, 245 Div, which is the enemy Division opposing us.
8   A small enemy patrol approached one of 'A' Sqn's patrols West of HILVARENBEEK during the night. 1 enemy was killed and a small wireless set captured. The Regt came under command 1 Corps. 147 Regt (RAC) (Churchills), from 34 Tk Bde came under our command at mid-day and their 'A' Sqn were concentrated at MIDDELBEERS by last light. Their Recce Troop was split up and 4 Honeys sent to each of our 'A', 'C' and 'D' Sqns. During the night an enemy patrol reached the HILVARENBEEK DIESSEN road, our inter-Sqn axis, and laid 3 Tellermines on the bridge at HILVARENBEEK. One of 'A' Sqn's Echelon lorries blew up on its way up to the Sqn in the afternoon. The driver and second driver were both wounded. Rather less shelling and mortaring than yesterday. Just before dusk 'D' Sqn reported the noise of tanks 500 yds to the North of their left patrol, but nothing materialized.
9   'A' Sqn had an unpleasant night. HILVARENBEEK was heavily shelled by 150mm's. 'A' Sqn 147 Regt (RAC) moved up to HILVARENBEEK. Along the North bank of the canal in front of 'D' and 'C' Sqns the enemy appear to have thinned out from their fwd positions. During the afternoon two Troops from 'A' Sqn 147 Regt and some dismounted Royals carried out a sortie against an infantry position to the West of HILVARENBEEK. The enemy position was wiped out; about 6 Germans being killed and 12 taken prisoner. Identification 935 Regt, 245 Div.
10   During the night an enemy patrol approached 'A' Sqn's patrol on the Northern outskirts of HILVARENBEEK. It was engaged and dispersed. 'B' Sqn was released by 82 US Airborne Division and rejoined the Regt about 1200 hrs. 191 Fd Regt moved up into positions between MIDDELBEERS and HILVARENBEEK in support of the Regt. In the late afternoon 154 Bde (51 (H) Div) took over responsibility for the right hand sector of our front between OIRSCHOT 3124 and BEST 3726 and covering the Aerodrome. This made it possible to withdraw 'C' Sqn.
11   'C' Sqn moved back to CASTEREN 2613, for a few days rest. During the afternoon a second sortie was laid on by 'A' Sqn against another enemy infantry position to the West of HILVARENBEEK. A full account of this raid is attached at Appendix 'A'. The raid was completely successful and resulted in the position being wiped out. About 10 enemy killed and 12 PW taken. Identification of PW's 935 Regt, 245 Div. Major G.R.D. Fitzpatrick, MBE, MC, was slightly wounded in the thigh but remained at duty. Shortly after the raid was over and the force had returned to Sqn HQ in HILVARENBEEK, a very heavy and accurate artillery stonk was put down on the town. Tpr Simpson was killed and Cpl Andrews and Tpr. Robinson wounded. The Tanks and Gunners also suffered some casualties. One of 'A' Sqn's -track 75 mm's and their German Staff Car were completely destroyed. At about 1810 hrs. 2 Typhoons attacked 'D' Sqn's centre patrol with cannon fire. In spite of yellow smoke and red florescent panels being displayed, the planes made three determined runs at the Troop, knocking out a Dingo and wounding Tpr. Haxley. In the evening the C.O. received the following personal message from the Comd, 1 Corps, Lt.Gen. Sir J.T. Crocker, KBE, CB, DSO, MC:- "Many congratulations to you and 147 RAC on your two recent most successful raids". 'A'
12   No change in 'A' and 'D' Sqns patrols. A quiet night. Spasmodic mortaring and shelling throughout the day. At 1600 hrs orders were received to patrol and picquet EINDHOVEN TURNHOUT Road between STEENSEL and TURNHOUT tomorrow morning and report it clear by 0800 hrs, as H.M. the King would be using that route. 'A' Sqn lose a Dingo on a mine. Tpr Brady wounded.
13   'C' Sqn carries out their task and reports the route clear by 0800 hrs. At 0900 hrs, however, information is received that His Majesty is travelling by air. 'B' Sqn relieves 'A' Sqn at HILVARENBEEK. 'D' Sqn locate and successfully engage with their 75 mm's a command post and strong point on N bank of the canal. Otherwise N.T.R. RIO, Capt. E. A. Berger, evacuated with concussion following a Jeep smash.
14   'C' Sqn relieves 'D' Sqn at MIDDELBEERS. 'A' and 'C' Sqns report intermittent shelling and mortar fire - Otherwise N.T.R. C.O. visits 1 Corps in the afternoon. RSM Furlow evacuated. Brigadier H.B. Scott, DSO and Major Starkey visit the C.O.
15   A quiet day on both Sqn fronts. Sqn Leaders' Conference at RHQ 1400 hrs to discuss Promotions, Amendments to W.E. and any other business. TQMS Hepworth evacuated.
16   'B' Sqn Dingo blown up on a mine at 213258. Cpl. Farrow slightly wounded but remains at duty. Static patrolling continues. The Regt received notification of the following immediate awards by C-in-C 21 Army Group:- Lieut. C.J. Shaw 'D' Sqn M.C. ; Lieut. K.F. Timbrell 'D' Sqn M.C.
17   'D' Sqn relieve 'B' Sqn at HILVARENBEEK. Signs of enemy withdrawal in front of 49 Div on our left, but enemy still in same positions in HILVARENBEEK area. In front of 'C' Sqn very few enemy can now be observed in the fwd positions along North bank of the canal and there has been a considerable decrease in shelling and mortaring from this area. Considerable regrouping taking place within 2 Army preparatory to further offensive operations. Windy with some rain.
18   Regt to come under command 4 Armd Bde wef 2100 hrs and reverts to 12 Corps. Brigadier Carver, DSO. MC, Comd 4 Armd Bde, visits C.O. 0830 hrs. 'A' Sqn relieve 'C' Sqn at MIDDELBEERS. Considerable shelling and mortaring in 'D' Sqn area. Enemy still very sensitive to any movement on our part. Cpl. Burnard, MM, Tpr Williams 77 and Tpr Neillings seriously wounded by one unlucky mortar shell which landed in amongst them when they were dismounted from their White Scout Car. Heavy rain.
19   4 C.L.Y. have taken over from 147 RAC and 4 R.H.A. from 191 Fd Regt. The Greys have also moved up in close support of 'D' Sqn in the HILVARENBEEK area. On our right The Royal Netherland Bde has taken over from 154 Bde and are under command 4 Armd Bde. N.M.S. on the whole of our front. Visibility very poor owing to heavy rain.
20   Shortly after first light 'D' Sqn's position was mortared; one shell landed immediately in front of the White Scout Car. Cpl. Reid was killed and Tprs Jerdin, McKerron and Staley injured. Throughout the remainder of the day there was slight shelling and mortar fire but little other activity. The Brigade Commander visited the C.O. in the morning and during the afternoon an L.O. from the Netherlands Bde called at HQ to ascertain dispositions. Fair with good visibility.
21   During the early morning hours of darkness two enemy patrols advanced towards positions manned by troops of The Greys, supporting 'D' Sqn in the HILVARENBEEK sector. In both cases the patrols were driven off without loss. Slight shelling and mortaring throughout the day, otherwise little activity. In the morning the C.O. attended a demonstration held by 4 Armd Bde. A Sherman Tank ploughed its way easily through a thick forest of fir trees, followed by a Sherman with Bulldozer which cleared the track. Fair. Good visibility.
22   'B' Sqn relieved 'D' Sqn in the HILVARENBEEK sector. Less shelling than usual in this area, but considerably more enemy movement on our right front opposite 'A' Sqn. Activity on 12 Corps front. 53 Div on right commences advance on S'HERTOGENBOSCH. Fine. Good visibility.
23   'C' Sqn relieved 'A' Sqn in the MIDDELBEERS BAAST sector. At 1500 hrs the lock-keeper at HOOGE HAGHORST crossed to the South side of the Canal and reported that the enemy had withdrawn. He was placed under arrest as he was known to be a collaborator. But this information was confirmed by other civilians and proved correct. The whole of 12 Corps advancing N.W. towards the S'HERTOGENBOSCH TILBURG area. 53 Div on the right, 7 Armd Div and 51(H) Div in the centre and 15 (S) Div on the left. The Rev. Wingdfield-Digby held a voluntary Service for the B.3. Fair. Good visibility.
24   Shortly after first light 'C' Sqn sent a patrol across the Canal in the area N.N.W. of BAAST. A new type of German mine was encountered. While the White Scout Car Troop were trying to disarm it the mine exploded. Tprs Ongar and Jones (65) were killed and Cpl Fox was wounded. Later in the afternoon a foot patrol from 'C' Sqn crossed the Canal and advanced as far as SPOORDONK (about 1 miles N of the Canal), which they reported clear of enemy. 12 Corps continued to advance and at about 1600 hrs The Royal Netherlands Bde came across from our right flank to relieve 'B' Sqn in the HILVARENBEEK sector. 'D' Sqn then took over responsibility for the front on the right of 'C' Sqn and previously held by the R. Netherlands Bde 'D' Sqn were supported by a Sqn of tanks from the 4 C.L.Y. Before dark 'D' Sqn were relieved, 15 (S) Div having advanced across their front. Fine. Good visibility.
25   Considerable regrouping in 12 Corps owing to the success of the advance and for further operations. At first light 'B' Sqn moved over to the West to STRAAT AKKERS, about 10 miles S.S.W. of TILBURG. They patrolled Northwards in the direction of GOIRLE (about 3 miles S of TILBURG). Their patrols reached positions about 1 miles S of GOIRLE (which was held by the enemy), where they were held up by mines and boggy ground. 2 K.R.R's were operating on their right and 10 Polish Armd Div on their left. 'C' Sqn were released at mid-day from their duties S of the Canal, 15 (S) Div having advanced along the N bank across their front. In the afternoon the Regt moved from the HILVARENBEEK MIDDELBEERS sector to the area in which 'B' Sqn was already operating, as above. H.Q. and 'A', 'C' and 'D' Sqns concentrated at VOOR EEL, on the main TURNHOUT TILBURG road about 2 miles S of POPPEL. Fair. Good visibility.
26   'B' Sqn continued its patrol in the same area as yesterday. Mines and boggy ground continued to impede our advance. Three patrols were out during the night 26/27. 'A', 'C' and 'D' Sqns resting. Leave parties for the day sent into TURNHOUT. Dull. Moderate visibility.
27   'B' Sqn continues in the same role. They are unable to advance not only on account of the extensive enemy mine-laying in their area, but also on account of the boggy ground which was completely impassable to wheels. Meanwhile 12 Corps advances rapidly. On the right S'HERTOGENBOSCH is reported completely clear of the enemy by 53 Div. In the centre, 7 Armd Div advances about 5 miles, thus [] and getting well beyond the main road and railway between S'HERTOGENBOSCH and TILBURG. 2 K.R.R.C. and 44 R.T.R. captured GOIRLE and before dark 44 and 227 Bdes (15 (S) Div) took TILBURG. On the left 10 Polish Armd Div advancing N.W. cut the TILBURG BREDA road and advanced about 1 mile N of it. 'C' Sqn moved up to a position S of GOIRLE and patrolled the roads in that area, which they reported clear. At 2200 hrs they came under command The Royal Scots Greys who are advancing tomorrow. 'D' Sqn moved to S of GOIRLE to await orders. Dull. Moderate visibility. The following Officers join the Regt and are allotted to Sqns as shown:- 2/Lt. Whitaker 'D' Sqn; 2/Lt. Johnson 'A' Sqn; 2/Lt. Barker 'A' Sqn.
28   'C' Sqn operating under command The Greys advanced Westwards up the main TILBURG BREDA road. They met slight opposition and were held up on the outskirts of RIJEN, on the North side of the road. The Sqn destroyed 3 Met and took 5 PW's (including an officer and 2 S.M's) from the 1711 Artillery Regt. They had been acting as O.P's in the church at RIJEN. Sjt Bird and Tpr Brackenbridge were severely wounded when a bazooka went through the turret of their Armd Car. Later in the day Sjt. Owen's Armd Car received a direct hit from a bazooka or a 20 mm and was completely brewed up. The car could not be approached as it was under enemy fire. The crew Sjt. Owen, Tpr. Glennie and Tpr. Thomson were not seen to bale out after the car was hit and have not been seen since. Their fate is, so far, unknown. Shortly after the car was hit, Major R. Heathcoat Amory, MC, commanding 'C' Sqn, led a tank from The Greys into a firing position and, acting as O.P. from a house, directed fire from the tank onto a 20 mm gun, which was knocked out by a direct hit. In the morning 'D' Sqn were sent out to make contact between the right flank of the 10 Polish Armd Div and the left flank of the 4 Armd Bde. Their presence in that area (S of the TILBURG BREDA road. between GILZE and the road), proved superfluous and they were not employed in an active role. RHQ and 'A' and 'B' Sqns moved up to an area W of TILBURG. At about 1500 hrs 15 (S) Div and the 6 Armd Bde received orders to move immediately to the Eastern sector of the front to deal with an enemy counter-attack in the area of WEERT. As a result 'A' Sqn were sent to patrol up the Canal N.W. from TILBURG and had patrols out during the night. 'D' Sqn were sent further forward to patrol the Western side of the aerodrome South of the TILBURG BREDA road and to establish contact as before. They also had patrols out during the night. The Regt received notification of the following immediate awards:- Lt. D.F. Bradstock ('D' Sqn) M.C. ; Cpl. J. Tucker ('D' Sqn) M.M. ; Tpr. B. Kirwan ('D' Sqn) M.M. ; Cpl. S. Burnard ('D' Sqn) Bar to M.M. The C.O., Lt.Col. H.W. Lloyd, left by air for ENGLAND on 14 days compassionate leave. The 2 i/c Major A.H. Pepys, DSO, assumed temporary command of the Regt. Major R.St G.B. Gore was relieved of his duties with 12 Corps and returned to the Regt to take up temporary duty as 2 i/c. Dull. Good visibility.
29   At 0900 hrs 4 Armd Bde (Less 2 K.R.R.C., The Greys and 'D' Sqn) left the present theatre of operations to go over to the Eastern sector of the front where the enemy were still attacking. The Bde is to come under the command of 8 Corps (Gen. O'Connor) and the C.O. attended a conference at Corps HQ in the morning. The Regt concentrated in the area between WEERT and MAESEYCK with RHQ at MOLENBEERSEL. The Bde is to be in reserve, prepared to counter-attack in the event of an enemy break-through. The position here is that the enemy have attacked in some strength across the DEURNE CANAL. The attack is in the nature of a three-pronged drive, probably directed against HELMONDE. It was the appearance of 9 Pz Div and (probably) 15 Pz Gr Div as well in this area which tended to show that the attack might be of a serious nature. Further South a force of Bn Romansky were attacking across the CANAL DU NORD towards WEERT, while further South again another force consisting of 2 Luftwaffe Fortress Battalions are attacking Westwards from ROERMOND. L.O's from the Regt are sent out as follows:- 'C' Sqn to 44 R.T.R., 'A' Sqn to 4 C.L.Y. Fine. Good visibility,
30   The Greys, 2 K.R.R's and 'D' Sqn of The Royals left 12 Corps and rejoined the 4 Armd Bde, which is concentrated in the area of WEERT. The Bde is in 8 Corps reserve under command 7 US Armd Div and is to be prepared to counter-attack any enemy attempt to penetrate the Div front extending from WEERT to MAESEYCK. On the left of the Div (i.e. in the Northern sector defending HELMONDE), 15 (S) Div have now taken over responsibility, while the 1 Belgian Bde continues to defend the right flank of 7 US Armd Div as far South as MAESEYCK. The Royals are to maintain liaison with 7 US Armd Div and the Belgian Bde between the MAASTRICHT CANAL and MAESEYCK and the armoured regiments of 4 Armd Bde responsible for counter-attack in that area; they are also to recce the roads and tracks in the area. 4 C.L.Y. are responsible for the centre of the Bde area of responsibility, with 44 R.T.R. on the left and The Greys on the right. L.O's from 'A' and 'C' Sqns remain as before and 'B' Sqn sends an L.O. to The Greys. 'D' Sqn (which is again under command of the Regt) is in reserve. So far the enemy attacks have been held, the three-pronged drive in the North towards HELMONDE having been the most successful. Here the enemy has captured LIESEL on the road ro DEURNE and has widened his front on either side of the road towards ASTEN. Dull. Moderate visibility.
31   15 (S) Div commences to counter-attack the enemy in the Northern sector, but otherwise there is little activity. At about 1600 hrs Brig Carver, DSO, MC, visited the C.O. and informed him of certain new dispositions about to be made and gave him further orders for the Regt. 53 Div are about to come over from 12 Corps to 8 Corps to assume responsibility for the area between WEERT and MAESEYCK (158 Bde arrived today and concentrated in the area of BREE). 7 US Armd Div will then be withdrawn from this area to operate North of WEERT. Meanwhile 'A' Sqn sends out patrols to operate along the Canal approximately West of GRATHEM to maintain contact between 2 K.R.R's on their left and 1 Belgian Bde on their right. Contact is made with 4 R.H.A., who arrange to give artillery support. 'B' Sqn sends out patrols further South opposite R. MEUSE in the area of OPHOVEN. Both Sqns have patrols out during the night. 'A' Sqn's L.O. remains with 4 C.L.Y. and 'D' Sqn continues in reserve. Dull. Moderate visibility.

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Source: Jeroen Koppes, TracesOfWar.com, transcribing: Hans Houterman.

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.