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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: 6th Bn The Green Howards
Month and Year: November 1944 (Erase heading not required). Commanding Officer: Lt. Col. C.F. Hutchinson, DSO
Place Date Hour Summary Reference
HOLLAND Ref Maps 1/25000 ARNHEM Sheets 6NW 6 NE 1 0700 Patrol contact maintained during a quiet night.
1 1030 Enemy continued his daily harassing fire and C Coy have reported mortar bombs falling in Pl areas.
1 1620 Enemy multi-barrelled mortars fired into the Bn area but caused no damage.
1 2000 Own 3 in Mortar Pl and 124 Fd Regt RA harassed enemy targets throughout the day, the mortars expending 138 bombs.
1   Little enemy were seen. The number of enemy shells in the is Bn area today has been approx. 250 but no casualties were sustained.
2 0700 Patrol contact maintained during the night with 5 EY and 6 DLI. A quiet night with a brilliant moon.
2 1030 Yesterday the Snipers enlarged their bag of enemy killed by killing one at 712721. Since dawn the enemy intermittently shelled the Bn area from a long distance.
2   His FDL’s were constantly engaged by the 3 in Mortars and by 2 Cheshire MMG’s. Known enemy mortar and gun posns were engaged by 124 Fd Regt RA and one located Nebelwerfer posn North of the NEDER RHINE was engaged by a Regt.
2 2000 The fwd Coy areas were shelled and mortared throughout the day but no casualties were sustained. SEE APPENDIX ‘2’
2   3 in Mortar expenditure since 1800 hrs 1 Nov – 320 rounds.
2   At 1400 hrs today snipers killed a further two enemy at 712721.
2   Representatives of 7 GH visited the Bn at 1500 hrs and were shown over the area prior to the changeover on the night 3/4 Nov. Lt-Col Wilson 7 GH was most impressed with the layout of the Bn particularly Bn HQ.
2   NCO’s Cadre at “B” Echelon started today. SEE APPENDIX ‘2’
3 0700 Contact again maintained with 5 EY and 6 DLI during a quiet night.
3 1445 Relief of the Bn by 7 Green Howards began and 3 in Mortar Pl moved to new location South of ELST at 701697. SEE APPENDIX ‘3’
3 1500 B Coy 6 GH in reserve at 700710 left the Bn area and moved without incident to new location at 705699.
3 1600 CO proceeded to BRUSSELS and Comd of Bn passed to 2 i/c Major C M Hull MC.
3 1845 Relief of C and A Coys began with no interference from the enemy. The night was dark and heavy rain began to fall but at 1900 hrs artificial moonlight was supplied.
3 2130 By this time A and C Coys had been relieved by 7 GH. Comd then passed to 7 GH and Bn HQ 6 GH closed at 697715.
3 2215 Bn HQ established at 707693 South of ELST 7070.
3 2359 D Coy 6 GH relieved and established in new posns. Locations as follows:- A Coy 697698 B Coy 705699 C Coy 696701 D Coy 704699.
4 0800 Reveille for the Bn after a restful night. Breakfast was eaten at 0900 hrs and the Coys spent the rest of the morning cleaning and maintaining their weapons.
4   The role of the Bn in this area is a Counter-attack role to 7 GH.
4 2000 A quiet day with little inicident. Baths and entertainments parties are to be arranged – a Mobile Cinema will give a show tonight for the benefit of the troops.
5 2000 Nothing to reprt – a quiet day within the Bn area.
6 2000 In the morning the RSM lectured to A and B Coys concerning discipline and lectrured the C and D Coys in the afternoon.
6   The Brigadier (Brigadier Spurling (Leicesters)) visited the Coys in their billets at 1500 hrs.
7 0800 CO called Coy Comdrs to Bn HQ and details were discussed for the relief of the Bn by a Bn of 231 Bde prior to the move back to rest billets in NIJMEGEN South of the River WAAL.
7 1500 Bn began moving to rest billets in NIJMEGEN on relief by 1st Bn The Hampshire Regt (231 Bde).
7 1700 Bn HQ closed 707593 and moved to NIJMEGEN.
7 1830 CO returned from BRUSSELS.
7 1900 Relief of Bn by 1 Hamps completed.
NIJMEGEN 8 0830 A and B Coys proceeded to a field firing range at 707577 and used the Bren and the 2 in Mortar.
8 1400 C and D Coys prceeded to the same range and completed the same training as A and B Coys.
8   Later in the afternoon one officer and 23 OR’s joined the Bn as reinforcements. Recreational parties were again organised for the troops.
8   The 2 i/c, Major CH Hull MC, and the Padre Capt Prescott, spent the majority of the day arranging a Bn Dance to be held on the evening of 9/10 Nov in NIJMEGEN.
9 0900 Coys began training under their own arrangements.
9 1400 Training continued and Concert parties were again arranged.
9 1800 A Bn Dance attended by the Bde Comdr and the Commanding Officer was given by HQ, A, and B Coys. There was good civilian supprt which made the evening most enjoyable.
10 0900 Warning Order received for move of Bn across the WAAL to take over from the American Airborne Bn located in the BEMMEL area. D Coy to remain in NIJMEGEN to continue training. SEE APPENDIX ‘5’
10 0930 CO’s Conference for Coy Comdrs. Lt Richards (Canada) of B Coy assumed duties of Bn IO.
10 1500 Bn began to move across the road bridge in NIJMEGEN to an assembly area at 720660. A B and C Coys moved in TCV’s.
10 1515 Enemy arty began to heavily shell the town as the Bn apssed through particularly in the area of the Bridge.
10 1630 Bn HQ established in the HQ of II Bn/508 Parachute Regt, 101 US Airborne Div and relief of the Americans began. A very friendly take over.
10 2230 Relief of the Americans complete and Coys firmly established as follows:- Bn HQ 735682 A Coy 749682 B Coy 748683 C Coy 740684. Standing patrols were established fwd of all Coy localites. SEE APPENDIX ‘6’
11 0700 Coy contact patrols during the night.
11   At 0300 hrs B Coy’s standing patrol at 749686 was attacked by an enemy fighting patrol of ten men with hand grenades and schmeisser fire. The enemy were immediately engaged and driven off. Only one slight casualty was sustained; no enemy casualties apparent.
11 2030 Throughout the day the enemy continued to shell and mortar the Bn area particularly in the area of BEMMEL 7337 and its church. Towards evening some 150 mm shells fell in the vicinity of BEMMEL church and Bn HQ.
11   During the afternoon enemy shelled the mortar Pl area. A visiting sergeant from the Hampshire Regt & one civilian were killed following a direct hit on a house. A private soldier with the party was severely wounded. At the same time shrapnel damaged three motorcycles and set one mortar carrier on fire, which however was controlled and extinguished without much damage to the vehicle. Bn snipers positioned themselves in A and C Coy localities at 0615 hrs. Many enemy were seen fwd of the Bn front but none approached close enough to be shot at.
11   Some enemy seen in the buildings at 747697 were engaged by own Arty at 1445 hrs and snipers observed shells falling accurately on target.
11 2300 Enemy MG’s active along the Bn front.
11 2330 Long range enemy guns began to shell in and around the Bn area.
12 0700 Patrol contact maintained during night with 6 DLI and 7 Green Howards. Random spandau fire during the hours of darkness – one man in C Coy wounded whilst assisting a wiring party.
12 2000 During the day “3“ in Mortar Pl fired 280 rounds at enemy targets. Enemy continued to shell BEMMEL and its church and at 1140 hrs some 150 mm shells fell near Bn HQ. The Coy areas were subject to enemy mortar fire but no casualties were sustained.
12 2200 Intermittent spandau fire along the Bn front. Altogether a noisy day.
13 0700 Patrol contact maintained with 7 GH during the night.
13 2200 A quiet day within the Bn area. No enemy shelling or mortaring of the area during the afternoon. Snipers had a blank day seeing no enemy.
14 0700 Patrol contact maintained with 7 GH during night. D Coy relieved A Coy without incident.
14 1000 16 Pl of D Coy shot one enemy approx 400 yds in front of 10 Pl of B Coy. A patrol went out in the evening to recover the body but no truce could be found.
14 2000 Enemy shelling and mortaring of the Bn area during day was on a reduced scale.
14 2100 Increased spandau fire along the Bn front, but no casualties reported.
14 2300 Heavy enemy shelling of the Bn area and BEMMEL began.
15 0700 Patrol contact maintained with 7 Green Howards during night.
15 1000 Bn HQ closed 735682 and reopened at 732681.
15 2000 In the afternoon 3 in Mortar Pl fired 200 round at known enemy targets.
15 2100 6 Green Howards Operation Instruction issued in conjunction with Operation “Noah” (see appendices) SEE APPENDIX ‘9’
15 2130 Bn snipers had another blank day.
15 2200 B Coy began a “hate” shoot against known enemy posns fwd of the Coy front. Brens and Stens were fired supporterd by Bn 3 in Mortars, 4.2 hy Mortars of 2 Cheshire and artillery. The enemy retaliated with 81 mm mortar fire and much spandau fire was experienced towards midnight.
15   During the day, the 2 i/c (Major C H Hull MC) left the Bn and was succeeded by Major Ragwyn (Middlesex Regt).
16 0700 Contact again maintained with 7 Green Howards during night.
16 0730 Little enemy movement seen on the bn front.
16 1200 An exceptionally quiet morning on the Bn front.
16 2000 The enemy continued to shell BEMMEL with long range guns.
16 2300 The fwd Coys were subject to slight shelling and at 2330 hrs own arty (90 Fd Regt RA) fire a retaliatory shoot on SCHUTTEN 7160.
17 0700 Uneventful contact patrols by Coys during the night.
17 1200 Throughout the morning BEMMEL was again harassed by enemy shelling. Approx 30 shells of 105 & 150 mm calibre fell in the area of the church.
17 1330 -1400. C and D Coys experienced further shelling and mortaring.
17 1405 BEMMEL was shelled by long range enemy 150 mm guns. Some shells fell 130 yds from Bn HQ and windows that had been put in by the Pioneers one hour previous were smashed.
17 1800 A Coy began the relief of B Coy.
17 1805 Pl of A Coy at 732684 saw an enemy patrol of three strong approaching their posn. The patrol was engaged with Stens and the enemy withdrew.
17 2030 Relief of B Coy by A Coy completed.
18 0300 -0500. Persistent shelling of BEMMEL and its church by the enemy. 50 × 150 mm shells in the area.
18 0545 All Coys reported that the ditches were full of water. In C Coy area, a rise of 3 feet in one hour was noticed.
18 0800 No rise of the water in the dykes. The rise during the night thought to be due to the heavy rainfall at intervals during the night.
18 1340 Two Bn snipers located in C Coy area fired for the first time since dawn at an enemy 600 yds to their front. He was hit and seen to fall – later our own arty observer saw the Germans drag the body away.
18 1400 -1700. The enemy fired 45 mortar shells into D Coy area and four into A Coy area.
18 1800 The Bde Comdr sent his congratulations to Cpl Latchford and Pte Turner of the Sniper Section for killing an enemy today.
19 0700 Except for a few enemy shells falling in the area of BEMMEL, it was a quiet night.
19 1230 -1630. D Coy area was shelled by the enemy at intervals. No casualties were sustained.
19 1930 Ex Order “Spark” was issued from HQ 69 Inf Bde. SEE APPENDIX 11 & 11A
19   The CO held a conference on Exercise “Eddie” and all Coy Comdrs were in attendance.
19 2010 Own 3 in Mortar Pl engaged an enemy Spandau that was active on A Coy front. During the day the Mortar Pl continued its harassing and retaliation shoots against known enemy posns.
20 0100 -0400. 7 × 150 mm shells fell in the area of BEMMEL.
20 0900 Bn Mortars fired twelve rounds at a few enemy seen around the houses near the canal junction North East of the Bn posns.
20 1100 An enemy spandau that was harassing C Coy was fired on by the Coy 2 in Mortars. Enemy ceased firing after the first two bombs had been fired.
20 2000 Throughout the day the Bn 3 in Mortars fired, engaged known enemy spandau posns.
21 0700 A quiet and uneventful night. Work on new defences was carried out during the night by the fwd Coys.
21 1440 Three enemy were seen on the Canal at 752692 and were engaged by Bn 3 in Mortars.
21 1935 The Bde Comd (Brig Spurling) and the DAAQMG (Major Nicholson) visited the CO at Bn HQ.
22 0700 Enemy mortaring of B Coy – only one slight casualty reported. SEE APPENDIX ‘10’
22   A Bn recce party under comd of the DAA&QMG moved to a new location. SEE APPENDIX ‘10’
22 1200 An unusually quiet morning was experienced.
22 1900 Information received from HQ 69 Inf Bde stated that the enemy to our front, the 10th SS Pz Division, had been relieved by the 6th Parachute Regt and that the line had been withdrawn 800 yds – a Recce Patrol was made ready to certify these facts.
22 1920 Three enemy MG’s fired from the area of the Canal.
22   Major Hickson OC A Coy, went fwd and located two of the enemy spandau posns.
22   Capt J. Dandy, formerly Intelligence Officer of the 5th East Yorkshire Regt, was posted to the Bn.
23 0700 During the night, the CO organised a Harassing Shoot against the enemy to draw his fire and enable us to locate his posns. It consisted of arty, Bn 3 in Mortars, Coy Brens and 2 in Mortars with one M10 positioned on the road to make as much noise as possible. The enemy was late in returning our fire and eventually three spandaus began firing into the Orchard in A Coy area. No casualties were sustained.
23 2100 A Coy reported that the water in the ditches had risen 3 ins during the day.
23   There was a conspicious absence of enemy shellfire during the day.
24 0700 Contact patrols were carried out by Coys during a night of no enemy activity.
24 1200 A quiet morning experienced with no enemy movement seen.
24 2230 The quiet spell was broken by enemy shelling of B Coy area causing two casualties which did not prove serious.
24 2235 25 × 150 mm enemy shells fell in the area of BEMMEL church.
25 0700 Usual Coy Contact Patrols during a quiet night.
25 1200 A quiet morning. The Bde Comdr visited the CO at Bn HQ.
25 1500 Eight “Typhoons” attacked and “rocketed” the enemy held village of [KADEN?] North-East of the Bn posns. This area held an enemy HQ and gun posns. Large fires were seen by the fwd Coys after the ‘Typhoons’ had left.
25 1800 Large flashes to the East of the Bn area were seen by the fwd Coys. These flashes were believed to be the firing of enemy V1 Rockets.
25 2010 “A noise in the air” reported by all Coys, going in a North-Easterly direction and coming from the South-West, again believed to be the firing of enemy V1 Rockets (Flying Bomb). The “noise” ceased over the area of ANGEREN 7770.
26 0700 Nothing to report during the night. Coy contact patrols carried out as usual.
26 1215 Twenty-four “Spitfires” attacked the church at ANGEREN 7770 and knocked down the steeple that was being used by the enemy as an OP. Enemy billets were also attacked.
26 2000 -2100. V2 Rocket flashes again seen by the fwd coys.
27 0700 During the night enemy spandaus were active but caused no casualties.
27 0900 Lt-Col Turner Comdg the 1st Bn The Hampshire Regt visited Bn HQ to discuss details with the CO for the relief of the Bn at night.
27 1000 -1400. Bn preparing for the changeover.
27 2000 Relief by 1 Hamps completed and the Bn moved South into NIJMEGEN to occupy rest billets. SEE APPENDIX ‘16’
28 1200 Bn spent the morning preparing for a move to ROULERS in BELGIUM.
28 1700 An advance party with cooks left NIJMEGEN for the area of ALOST where the Bn will take breakfast tomorrow. SEE APPENDIX ‘12’
28 2000 Bn left NIJMEGEN and the CO stayed behind for a conference with the Div Comdr.
29 0800 The Bn breakfasted at ALOST.
FRANCE Ref Maps 1/50000 YPRES Sheet 41 29 1430 Bn arrived at ROULERS in BELGIUM and was billeted in the houses of the very friendly civilian population.
29   Bn HQ established at 76227022.
30   A quiet day within the Bn. No parades except Pay Parades!
30   Tomorrow at 0900 hrs the CO will announce to the Bn the policy of the Divisional movements in the next few days.

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Source: Joris Nieuwint, The Battlefield Explorer, 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.