The War Diary of 124th Fd Regt RA (TA)

Place

Date

Hour

Summary of Events and Information

1942 JAN  

Lt Col JM Riply RA

  1   Despite New Years Eve celebrations, RHQ out on all day Bde Scheme. Delightful scheme for clearing of heads!
  2   Bde Echelon Scheme-successful despite torrential rain.
  3 - 4   Once again experienced wind and snow storm. Despite valiant efforts and numerous tent pegs many tents Grounded. Camp area training and vehicle maintenance carried out.
  11   Orders received to return to Middle East Command. Preparations commenced for striking camp and experiencing 2nd. trip across Iraq, desert.
  13 0900 Left Kirkuk for KHURMATLI
    1400 Arrived KHURMATLI Vehicles and personnel O.K
  14 0900 Left KHURMATLI for DILTAWA via INJANA pass arrived DILTAWA 1500 hrs
  15   Left DILTAWA for HABBANIYAH via Baghdad, Arrived l630hrs.Exellent progress across desert track.
  16   Day of rest at HABBANIYAH Vehicle maintenance and general clean up,
  17   Left  HABBANIYAH for LG5 Greeted on arrival by sand and rain storm
18 Left LG5 for H3. Arrived 1530hrs,
  19   Left H3 for H4 at 0830hrs. Left desert track and met with fairly good tarmac
  20   Left H4 for MAFRAQ Excellent road Arrived approx. 1600hrs
  21   Left MAFRAQ and travelled via Tiberias and reached ROSH PINA where Regt camped on road side as torrential rain had made camping on ground impossible.
  21   General maintenance of vehicles. During next few days vehicles highly maintained and personnel give opportunity of brief visit to Tiberias
  27   On the move again into Syria via Damascus and Ballbeck and arrived at ZABBOUD Camp (Syria ) and took over Nissen hutted camp of Australian Units.
  28   Engaged in the process of sorting out and general clean up of vehicles and personnel. On arrival unit drew rations from Australian D,I,D, and the ration scale was excellent. A marked deterioration both in quantity and quality has been noted since ceasing to draw from Australian D, I. D. Strength of Regiment on last day of January Offrs,33: ORs,526,
1942 FEB  

Lt Col JM Riply RA

  1 - 7   Week mostly taken up by vehicle maintenance and generally making ourselves as comfortable as possible.
  8   Left Camp of Nissen Huts and all other conveniences left by Australians units for Labour Camp. This camp only partly completed as far as Nissen Huts concerned, but feverish activity of the unit and 2nd i/c hasten to restore it to some semblance of comfort, Leave commenced the only person lucky enough to partake there of being the I.0, and a subaltern of the Battery. As of old, this and other things curtailed by order to move, destination being that which we have been avoiding; for the past 2- ½ years, the WD.
  10   CRA 50 Div. delivered a speech to the unit. In plain words he remarked upon the glorious opportunities for quick death and glory rapid promotion in which direction he didn't say and left us to draw our own conclusions. We did.
  11   Left Labour via Baalbeck, Beyrouth and camped overnight 6 miles North of Acre (Palestine). Excellent camping site.
  12   Left Acre for Gaza. Uneventful journey. Excellent road,
  13   Arrived at Moascar-Tel el Kebir-Cairo, Mena to Wadi Metron. Traffic control through Cairo excellent.
  16   Left Wadi Matrun for El Dabaa,
  17   Arrived Mersa Matruh
  18   Left M, Matruh, via Sidi Barrani-Sollum-Fort Capuzzo to point 513, Scene of desolationen Route burned out vehcles etc, RMO's truck LAD and Water truck lost
  22   Came with the dawn the M.O, LAD and water truck. Blinding sandstorms, A number of vehicles unable to locate camp that night and camped overnight. Dawn found them within 1½ miles and once again we were complete. Patrol facilities throughout the journey were excellent
  23   Arrived at preliminary wagon lines and told that the box was just ahead, Arrived in 'Box' and took over from 144 Fd, Regt, Positions fairly well dug, but plenty of digging still to be done
  24 - 28   Digging and improving gun positions, Re-siting positions etc. I hope to be able to write a war diary next month. Strength of unit on last day of the month Officers - 31, OR's 532.
1942 MAR  

Lt Col JM Riply RA

     

OFFICERS OF 124 FIELD REGIMENT, R.A.
AS AT March 1942.

     

Number
         
 

Sub Rank

Major
Major
Capt
Capt
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
Lieut
2/Lieut
2/Lieut
2/Lieut
2/Lieut
2/Lieut
2/Lieut
Lt (QM)
Capt
Capt Rev
2/Lieut
Lieut

Acting  Rank

Lt.Col

T/Major
T/Major
T/Capt
T/Capt
T/Capt
T/Capt
T/Capt
T/Capt
A/Capt
A/Capt




















T/Capt

 Surname
Name

Ripley  MC
Forster
Bransom
Parbury
Lockerby
Baily
Webb
Wilton
Burnett
Rees 
Moffett
Adamson
Clephan
Taylor
Harrison
Irwin
Blake
Henniker-Major
Applebyn
St.John-Brookes
Ramsden
MacGregor
Hurworth
Heptinstall
Willis
Threadgill
Penrice
Turnbull
Cater
Fairlie (RAMC)
Dudgen (RA CDpt)
Taylor (RS)
Carruthers (RA)


Initials

JM
T
HI
P
WK
HBM
JKM
CW
GD
DB
GT
DFD
RS
HS
RA
HC
RNW
Richard Arthur
ES
JG
JY
JR
FH
LG
A
RB
JE
SJT
LR
CF
EA
ER
HS


Appointment

CO
2IC


























QM
MO
Padre
Sig Off
Stores Off
 

  1  

Strength of unit as per AFW 3008 and 3009 attached.

  2  

Digging of gun positions, slit trenches, vehicle pits etc. carried out general digging in of position and camouflaging improved. In most case the services of a compressor were called in and in some cases blasting was necessary.

  3   287 Fd. Bty. forming part of 69 Bde. mobile column left perimeter. Course 5 miles 180 degrees 23 miles 298
    1100 Contacted SA 3 Bn. Recce Unit and Capt. Ross 72 Fd. Regt. at Cherime. Course was then changed towards Her el Sere.
    1230 Contacted armd cars belonging to 1st Armd. Div. at 6585 and received report from them that Abiar el Aleima was occupied by enemy. Enemy Armd. cars observed in square 6588. It was decided to clear the ridge in square 6588 and received report from them that it was occupied by the enemy. About 120 round were put down . One enemy lorry was blown up (it is thought that it may have contained mines or explosives) and own armd cars confirmed damage to others.
    1625 OP shelled from dead ground about 500 x in front. Gun positions registered by guns thought to be 105 mm with burst similar to a 4'5' How, Own column. then moved off to 8 miles Bg. 296 and leaguered for night
  4 0630 Column moved off
    0700 4 enemy guns seen moving SW and dropped into action at 5095. Bty. came into action at range of 1100 yards and put 16 rounds into top area. Own Armd cars reported one of gun towing vehicles hit and abandoned. Enemy guns then moved out having been joined by 25 MT which collected the fourth gun. They went north by a very circuitous route, probably indicating that the area was mined. OP's were then established at Haleigh and from these enemy movement was observed in square- P60 and U69. Ezziat appears to be clear of the enemy. A plan was then made to attack square 1769 from the East at Dawn on the 5 Bty. to go into action at 5090 Armd. Div. were to support coming round North and East towards square P60 RE's reported road clear of mines, from 5391-5791 and it was decided to attack along that track putting up OP on top of Haleigh. An Infantry patrol was sent out.
  5 0600 Column partly bogged and Armd. Div. could not move owing to heavy rains' overnight.
    1500 Infantry Patrol gathered in and column withdrew.
  6  

Major Collett White and Major Forster RA 74 Fd. Regt. contacted at Bidi Breghisc. Column returned to perimeter. In making his report afterwards Major HI Bransom RA commanding 287 Fd. Bty. in his notes states that Armd. OPs are invaluable and almost invisible if moving alone. Spare links essential. General Gun maintenance, which included the painting of St. Andrews crosses on bonnets, and the continuation of digging of OPs gun pits, trenches etc.

  9   288 Fd. Bty. left perimeter forming part of Bde. Mobile column contacted Major Collett White 74 Fd. Regt. at Sid Breghisc. The minefields reported in this area does not appear to exist.
    1300 Contacted S. Africans armd. cars at Bir Sferi. This is about 1000 yds. South of the position marked on the map.
    1500 Small Det. MET engaged at long range from 6780 squares U68 U78 seem to be extremely veil registered^ by enemy with 75 mm and 105 mm guns. They use minimum ranging, often one air burst only and use a roving OP. Our own OPs were subjected to intermittent shelling from 105 mm guns. Leaguered for night at 6080,
  10   Contacted Scots Guards at 5286 who had been shooting up square 49. They had only found small bunched of MET who were probably laying minefields Contacted 12 Lancers who reported enemy putting down minefield from Haleigh to Tmimi.
    1400 288 Bty. dropped into action 5488 with established OPs and 2 FOS registered various points and small bunches of enemy MET were engaged. OP established at B of Gabr el Aleima 6192 whilst engaged by small arms fire and later chased from position by Armd car which stopped to fire at intervals but did not fire up at about 1500 yds and did not register a hit - a good opportunity wasted (on both sides ) Column then back to leaguer in same area as night before. Night Patrol was sent to Gabr el Aleima but did not succed in capturing any prisoners. 
  11 1230 288 Battery came into action NW of Bir Sferi at 6581. SA Armd.cars were contacted at PT 174. 7581 which has excellent command of surrounding country. 25-30 MET were engaged at 6892. A herd of camels were also engaged, Later the 25 MET reappeared and on directions and observation received by wireless from a sergeant at the Armd. Car post at 174, many rounds were put in among them. This sergeant new the area very well and his observations were extremely effective. A plan was made to put a troop into action next morning at about 7578.
  12 0800

Troop came into action with Tp. Comdr, observing from Armd. OP. Roving enemy OP was soon spotted and engaged. At this time the sec on Troop was brought tp into dead ground while position was being recca about 7086 with OP Area about 7187. Roving OP again appeared and later brought down fire on our own OPs which were also spotted by an Armd car which opened fire with cannon. OP's led Armd Car to within 10000 yds of Troop position but as this was sited for more cover than Anti tank command only three rounds were fired at it before it went away. 20-30 MET were engaged in Gabr el Aleima area of which 2 were definitely set on fire and others damaged. Enemy gun position at first A of Abiar el Aleima was fired at and replied with fire from 4 75 mm about 2 105m, and one gun of calibre about 150 mm (rate of fire 1 round per 2 min Bty. then reformed at 7578 and rejoined column at Sidi-Breghisc. Column then returned.

  13   Continuation of digging policy. The Italians under Musso might have started cultivating but we have done the spade work.
  17 0615 The Regiment left perimeter and formed column. C of a general Patrol taking place 17-22nd. March 42.
    0955 Contacted 151 Bde, Coy.
    1100 Contacted 69 Bde. Coy. and collected from them 1 Fd. Bty. and 1 Tp LAA.
    1130 Arrived GOT TARRAF (U77) and recced Eluet el Aggara (U79) This place had been described in some topographical. A patrol sent out night 15/16 March had reported that Eluet el Agarra was heId about one Coy of Inf. Any advance towards this place was overlooked for a distance of six miles from the pimple on Gabr el Aleima U69 hence forward referred to as the pimple on Gabr el Aleima. Under these circumstances a dawn attack was considered Impractical and a report sent to that effect at dawn 19 March If Bleut el Agarra was to be taken a daylight attack would be made
  18 0800 No reply to the report having been received it was decide to attack Bluet el Agarra that afternoon and a further recce took place, From Pt 143 (U7988) the objective was still invisible but it was decided that three green bushes must be very near it. The armd car patrol reported that there were no signs of enemy occupation at this place. These three green bushes were just visible from PT 174 and coincided with the bearings to Bluet el Agarra. 
    1430 An attack was launched by B and D Coys. 7 Green Howards from the Pt. 174 ridge on a bearing of 360. No Infantry opposition was encountered but the supporting Artillery 124 Fd. Regt  were heavily shelled.
    1730 The objective was reached. This proved to be about ½ mile North of the three green bushes. On arrival at the objective the Inf. MGs and A/Tk. arty, came in for heavy shelling and under fire from some passing AFVs The object proved to be anything but an outstanding feature. From it the field of view was nowhere more than 1000 and the best that could be obtained nearby was an arc of view of from approx. 330 - 90. There were some wadis in the locality which afforded cover but generally the whole position was overlooked by the PIMPLE. With the force available all round defence was impossible and the back of the position was quite open to AFV attack over favourable ground.
  18   No enemy activity
  19  

No enemy activity except shelling in the morning and evening. A  sect of 287 Fd. Bty. was brought up close and helped to keep down the enemy fire. Our Arty, was very active shelling the OP on the PIMPLE and enemy guns. Two enemy armd cars appeared on a track some 1000 yrds north of our position and fired a few rounds. On occasions MG fire and a few rounds of 2 Pdr. drove them off.

  20  

If permission was granted, it was decided to attack the PIMPLE at dawn 21st. A recce patrol was therefore sent out but missed its mark brought no information. There was no enemy activity.

  21 0615

 MG and some Arty fire was heard from the direction of the pimple and a green Verey light followed by a red was sent up twice. The firing did not continue long and it was not known whether or not the Pimple had changed hands, A liaison Officer was sent to A Column who reported that the Pimple was still in enemy hands, that an attack was being staged and that arty support from us would be require at a time to given later. This was not called for as on the appearance of our tanks the Pimple surrendered. An escort was sent by us for the prisoners and later the collection and destruction of enemy materiel was arranged and carried out.

    11.00 "C ' Column was ordered to send a Coy. with MG-s and A/Tk. to take over the Pimple.
  21  

No enemy activities.

  22 1015

Enemy started shelling the Pimple, Orders were received to hold the Pimple until further orders to cover the withdrawal of Column B Plans were made for our withdrawal and preparations put in hand.  Dust indicating vehicles was seen on the Tmimi Mechili Road

    1025 Enemy Vehicles they were seen to turn in a southerly direction
    1030 Orders were received from Brig Nicholls to start thinning out the position. .
    11.00 Brig. Nicholls ordered the withdrawal to be' speeded up . It had by then been nearly completed. The approaching column had been ranged on but had disappeared before effective fire could be brought to bear. The column was estimated at 40 Vehicles
  23 to 31 1530 The column, reached the perimeter.
Daily routine.
List of casualties see Appendix 3.
List of equipment lost and captured Appendix.4.
1942 APRIL  

Lt Col JM Riply RA

  1  

Reserve water supply in 44 Gall drums found to be undrinkable and Condemned by Medical Office

  5  

Out on operations

  7  

Returned from Operations. New supply of reserve water delivered RASC . On examination this was also not fit for human consumption One drum was practically crude oil. We are getting used to drinking petrol and paraffin with our water, but we draw the line at crude oil

  9  

287 Fd. Bty out on patrol

  11  

287 Fd. Bty  Returned.

  12 0730 288 Fd. Bty. out on patrol  Capt. C F. Fairlie RAMC took over as M.O
  15 2130 288 Fd. Bty  Returned.
  20   287 Fd Bty, gone to wagon line outside perimeter for training
  22   287 Fd. Bty  Returned.
  23   Terrific Sandstorm.
  24   287 Bty. RA and Regimental HQ joined 288 for 69 Bde. exercise object co-operation with tanks. 2 Tps left in perimeter in A/Tk. Role 
  25  

Left wagon lines soon after midday and travelled some 12 miles South East and after a night march exercise finished about 1000 hrs

  26  

Returned to wagon lines and carried out maintenance etc

  27  

Left wagon lines again about 1700 hrs. for approx, same area for 2nd exercise

  28   Exercise finished about 1200 hrs. and all returned to perimeter
  29   General maintenance and catching up with bump which had accumulated
  30   Dust storm all day
1942 MAY   From 1st May to 6 July the war diary was lost due to enemy action information for these two months have been put together from personnel accounts and secondary sources. 
     

Lt Col C F Tod RA

1942 JUNE   From 1st May to 6 July the war diary was lost due to enemy action information for these two months have been put together from personnel accounts and secondary sources.

Place

Date

Hour

Summary of Events and Information

1944 MAY    
       
Shepreth 7   3 Troops of 124th Fd Regt RA (less RHQ) Moved to Dunwich Battle Area.
Dunwich 8   Course Shooting at Dunwich Battle Area.
Shepreth 8   Return to Shepreth Summer Camp.
Shepreth 15-17   Unit Waterproofing Course Serial 7 - Vehicles under Lt. Sapoote and Guns and Trailers under Lt Meoay
Shepreth 23-24   Unit Waterproofing Course Serial 6 -  under Lt. Sapoote. Vehicles and Guns
       
      ENCLOSURES
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Standing Admin Ins for Ops.
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. O.O. No.1
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Standing Orders for Operations
      A.B.W'S 3008, 3009, FOR 6, 13, 20, 27 May 44.
   

FOLLOWING APPENDICES FWD UNDER SEPARATE COVER UNDER "TOP SECRET"

      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Adm Planning No.1.  with Amendment 1 & 2           
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Operational Inst No.1.  with Amendments 1 & 2      
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Operational Instruction No.2.                                      
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Adm Order No.1.                                                         
      124 Fd Regt. R.A. Intelligence Summery No 1.                                        
  JUNE    
Shepreth, 1

 

Amendment 1 to 124 Fd Regt RA “Standing Orders for Ops 1944” Issued
Cambs 6

 

Intelligence Summary No 3 issued
      Appendices C and D to 124 Fd Regt RA OO 1 issued

 

8

 

Amdt 1 to 124 Fd Regt RA “Standing Adm Instrs for Ops” issued
      Amdt 2 to 124 Fd Regt RA “Standing Orders for Ops 1944” issued

 

9

 

Amdt 1 to 124 Fd Regt RA OO1 issued
  10   Amdt 3 to 124 Fd Regt RA “Standing Orders for Ops 1944” issued
 Algonquin 10 1200 489 Fd Bty RA complete moved to ALGONQUIN CAMP, WITLEY, Surrey.
  11   489 Bty vehs waterproofed
Camp Witley 12 0200 489 Bty moved to Marshalling Area S.4., vehs completed waterproofing and loaded.
Marshalling
Area
13 2200 489 Bty personnel embarked on MT 9
Normandy 18 -19 1800 489 Bty disembarked Vehs etc de-waterproofed

 

23

 

All 489 Bty guns in action 785703
Shepreth 19   RHQ, 288 & 441 Btys, Sig Sec & LAD moved to ALGONQUIN CAMP, WITLEY, Surrey.
Algonquin
Camp
20 -23

 

Waterproofed all vehs & guns.
  23 -29   Various training programmes were carried out including CPOs exercise, gun drill and MT lectures.

 

30 0435 Moved to Marshalling Area S.4. Waterproofing completed,
       
  JULY    
     

OFFICERS OF 124 FIELD REGIMENT, R.A.
AS AT 1 JULY 1944.

      40382               T/Lt Col.             GOUGH                  P.H.              C.O.                  RHQ
      39150               T/Major              COLVILLE              E.H.              2 IC                   RHQ
      158809             T/Captain          HEPTINSTALL       L.G.              Adjt                   RHQ
      258886             W/Lieut              READ                     M.J.               I.O.                    RHQ
      261100             W/Lieut              BOTTOMLEY        J.                   Sur.Offr.            RHQ
      274115             W/Lieut (QM)    BRAYFORD          T.                   Q.M.                  RHQ
      118073             W/Captain         DOVE                     W.L.             M.O.                  RHQ
      36975               W/Major             SHAKERLEY         P.F.              B.C.                  288 Bty
      35779               T/Captain           DOWNESWELL  J.W.              Bty Capt.           288
      145597             T/Captain           RAMSDEN           J.Y.               Tp Comd           288
      72083               T/Captain           WOOD                   W.A.            Tp Comd           288
      245007             W/Lieut              HALVERSEN        H.K.             C.P.O.                288
      233424             W/Lieut              BREWIN                 R.                 A.C.P.O.            288
      159818             W/Lieut             TOYNBEE               D.S.             G.P.O.                288
      145708             W/Lieut             DAVIES                   J.M.             Sec.Offr.             288
      235013             W/Lieut             CLARKE                 K.M.             G.P.O.                288
158821             W/Lieut              WILLS                    A.                  Sec.Offr             288
      72170               T/Major               ROSS                     J.C.P.            B.C.                  441 Bty
      158819             T/Captain          TURNBULL            S.J.T.            Bty Capt            441
      138979             T/Captain          PRICE                    D.L.C           Tp Comd.           441
      137535             T/Captain          SMART                  J.H.               Tp Comd            441
      143851             W/Ldeut            ABLITT                   J.F.                C.P.O.                441
      203944             W/Lieut              EASTER               G.                  G.P.O.                 441
      187911             W/Lieut              CARLINE              T.H.               C.P.O.                 441
      295300             W/.Lieut             HUHER                 P.E.               Att. HQ RA.        441
      95009               W/Lieut              GREIG                   D.G.              Att..HQ RA.        441
      88264               W/Ldeut             PHALP                 G.A.               Sec. Offr.            441
      311208            2/Lieut                JACKSON            H.                   Sec.Offr              441 
      52171              T/Major               BURY                    J.J.S.             B.C.                    489 Bty
      62105              W/Captain         PETERS               H.H.               Bty Capt.            489
      132872            T/Captain          CLARK                  A.B.              Tp Comd             489
      50807              T/Captain          HAWKINS             A.                   Tp Comd            489
      93521              W/Lieut              IRWIN                    H.C.                G.P.O.                489
      166366            W/Lieut             MACEY                 M.G.               Sec.Offr              489
      201491            W/Lieut             SMITH                   G.C.               Sec. Offr              489
      262325            W/Lieut             JENNINGS           D.G.               Sec.Offr               489
      259496            W/Lieut             CRUMP                R.R.                G.P.O                  489
      77816              W/Lieut             COOMBES          R.F.                Sec.Offr               489
      304027            2/Lieut               RUFFLE               F.E.K.            Sec.Offr              489
Normandy 1   Marshalling Area – ENGLAND. All vehicles and guns completely waterproofed and loaded at TILBURY Docks on MTA 110 and MTA 111.
  2 0900 Marshalling Area. Personnel embarked on MTA 110 and MTA 111.
  3-4   Voyage areas.
  5   NORMANDY.
    0830 Personnel, vehicles and  guns disembarked on ICT’s and de-waterproofed.
RHQ 778712 6 0700 RHQ, 288, 441 came into action alongside 489 Bty 785703.
288 Bty 779110     Guns Silent at night.
441 Bty 773713      
489 Bty 785703      
778712 7 0945 Registered ORGHY 791657
    1650 6 Me’S 109 flow over Regtl posn bearing 60 degs.
124  in sp of 56 Bde who will carry out Stage 1 of Operation Order – see Appex “A”.
778712 8 0800-0850 Shot on Fire Tasks for 59 Bde.
    1045 R.A.F. strafing 763633.
    1120 Red smoke fired from 1 gun on 799632 for indication of target.
    1800 Regimental Fire Plan 7673 6437. Front 560x Axis 210 degs. Timings 10 mins slow.
778712 9 0945 Red smoke fired on 770627
    1000 Red smoke fired on 780627
    1005 Report from Air OP – Smoke and Typhoons hit correct area.
    2145 Red smoke fired on 780626.
Lieut Browin killed . Buried 766679. (233424 W/Lt. R. Browin, R.A.)
General Remarks.
– Enemy Mortars active all along our front, these were engaged during the day with regimental fire. 
778712 10   General Remarks. – Active enemy mortars on our front, engaged by regimental fire.           
778712 11 0700 “N” hr. Shot on barrage R.A. 50 (N) Div No. 13.
    0725 DOE complete
    0835 “X” hr.
    0857 ELX complete.
    1630 “Y” hr.    Codeword  FILLY was not fired.
    1915 Second Army MAPLAY compromised 11 – 14th. SLIDEX used for map ref 15.0200B hrs July.           
    1945 Defence overprint  SA/10/434 issued by HQ RA and distributed to Btys
    1955 Two Allied aircraft observed at 78665 by our OP presumed crashed. No confirmation given as view obscured from OP. Report huge column of smoke rising at approx position of presumed crash. During the day mortars again active on our front, engaged by Btys and regimental concentrations.

TECHNICAL OBSERVATION. – The barrage of the 11th Jul comprised 3 “BLOCKS” and as our infantry were forming up between BLOCKS we fired intermittently on the last line for indication purposes. When inf were ready,  HQ RA ordered us to fire on the next BLOCK.

      The meteor was applied upon the opening line at 0600 hrs, and the “Current” meteor of 1200 and 1600 hrs NOT applied as there was the possibility of rds falling in our own FDLs. This info is fwd as this particular circumstance is NOT catered in A.T. Vols.
778712 12   Considerable mortar activity  on regti front during night 11/12.
Regtl area shelled by 105 and 150mms throughout the night 11/12 (Approx 75% duds).
    2200 Red smoke fired on 797642.
Enemy mortar posns proving very troublesome on our front and the Regt brought down maximum amount of fire possible for retaliation purposes immediately the Inf-OP was fired upon.
778712 13   During night of 12/13 enemy patrol activity caused us to fire on one D.F. at 2230 hrs and again at 0230 hrs.
    0855 Recce party comprised of 2 IC, Sigs Officer, RSO and RSM went fwd to select new areas.
    1008 Arty Policy from HQ RA – fwd tps not to be engaged unnecessarily but harass the rear areas. Immediate retaliation fire will be carried out on enemy H.Bs., mortar or suspected mortar posns.
    1417 Heavy enemy mortar fire on LONGRAYE.
    1430 61 Recce under Comd of 69 Bde and take over 7 G. Howard's area within present boundaries. 7 G. Howard's relieve 5 E. Yorks. 5 E. Yorks to Bde reserve area 7768. 6 G. Howard's remain.
    1503 Regt responsible for 56 and 69 Bde fronts. Regt took over LO with Americans from 86th.
    2330 Enemy patrol attacked 6 G. Howard's fwd coy posns inflicting casualties.  D.F. called for and fired.
778712 14   124 Fd Regt in sp of 56 and 69 Bdes.
    0608 L/Bdr Raw wounded at HQ 5 E. Yorks.
    1300 Propaganda shells fired on enemy fwd poens – area 8080 6485. Air OP reports
       
SEPTEMBER   GENERAL
During September the 124 Regt RA moved through FRANCE, BELGIUM and HOLLAND and formed the bridgehead at the ALBERT CANAL and
also at NIJMEGEN. Full details of the latter battle are set out in APPENDICES.
Maps used 1/100,000 FRANCE, BELGIUM, HOLLAND. Sheets 8, 9, 3, 4, 5, and 2.
247986 1 1700 Regt moves to new location. RHQ 247509.
247509 2
1430
1830
Quiet day
- 1830. Regt moves into action at 377943
Move completed
377943 3   Quiet day on Regt Front, general routine and maintenance carried out
  4 0530
0540
0700
1100
1400
Recce parties ready to move.
Main body ready to move.
Regt moves to hide.
Move completed. RHQ 906317
-2000. Regt moved into action RHQ 392635.
392635 5 1121
1500
One gun to report to 6 GREEN HOWARDS for anti tank role.
Civilians report several pockets of Boshe North of River. Patrols went out but found that Boshe already rounded up by FFI.
  6 0845
1550
Air CP went up to recce suspected Boshe Armoured Column, which attempted to break through night 5/6 Sept.
14 POW taken by 288 OP sent to Bde cage. 5E Yorks took 300 POW 5 Sept.
  7 1500 -2000. Regt moved into action 019823 – SOUTH Bank of ALBERT CANAL, with a silent role.
019823 8   69 Bde formed bridgehead over Canal, FOOs and Ops shot up targets all day. Bridgehead consolidated by evening. DFs arranged and targets registered.
  9 0240
0720
1210
1330
1450
1830
2222
Battery shot on PLUM III Scale I.
Change to permanent grid.
Engaged F.2 069857 and F.4 071856 suspected sniper areas.
Enemy infantry engaged.
2 Tp Targets suspected enemy localities 0630 8684 and 0578 8678.
Air OP reports movements NW and SE of canal. Pin Point Target 019875 23 m Scale I 50% Airburst Fired.
Air OP reports enemy Company strength in area 031866 General line withdrawn as far as west as 031866.
019823 10 0930
1015

2300
Class 40 Br over canal.
U Tgt 095836 20 m Scale I shot. Civilians report 15,000 enemy troops SOUTH of second canal.
Gun area Woods SW 0697.
Enemy guns active from bearing 346 deg 042860 (150 mm).  Hostile Batteries engaged periodically during day. Numerous U Targets shot during day on HB and enemy concentration. Considerable mortaring on whole front.
  11
0830
Small fire plan by 124 FD Regt enabled 69 Bde to extend head slightly during day.
Mortar bombs falling 077853. U Targets shot during day on HBs and enemy concentration 907889 Gnr Longstaff, W. (288 Bty) killed in action during day.
908471 Bdr Elliott, W. (288 Bty) – missing believed POW.
019823 12 0950
1230
1730
-1114 U Targets shot. Heavy mortaring on Bde front.
190 Fd Regt (15 (s) Div) took over present areas and commitments.
124 Fd Regt under command 50 (N) Div moved to hide 999780.
999780 13 1500
1600
Regt moves to hide 213740 - BEVERLOO Area
-1800 Regt moved into Action RHQ at 225789.
225789 14 -15   Little activity as Regt was soon out range of retreating Bosche. Routine inspections, resting, washing, etc. Awaiting orders to move from HQ RA.
  16 1900 -2100 Regt moves into action in new location 3421 9578 - silent role for the night. (See Appx "A").
225789 17
1230
1409
1432
1708
2244
2252
2315
Operation GARDEN.   See Appx "B"
Stonk AJAX 355010 32 m Axis 140 deg scale 5 shot.
Shot on preliminary SANPO in support Guards Armd Div crossing of MEUSEL’ESCAUT CANAL.
Shot on SANPO Barrage.
-1800 U Targets fired.
Shot on serial 4 DEER.
Shot on serial 11 ELK.
Shot on serial 18 GOAT.
225789 18   124 Fd Regt fired Fire Plan in support of 3 British Divisions Bridgehead. U and Hostile Battery Targets were engaged continuously by the Regt.
Mortar fire was fairly heavy forward areas.
225789 19 0005
0900
2000
Shot on Task (HASARD).
Class 9 Bridge across 3 British Divisions Bridgehead.
-2130 Regt area heavily bombed.
225789 20   Regt engaged targets and Hostile Batteries this side of  bridgehead. Still a considerable number of Bosche in woods either side of road.
  21 2300 Regt moves along CLUB Axis to ARNHEN. Crossed Albert Canal 236760 and Escaut Canal 364961.
  22 1400
1600
2300
Held up outside EINDHOVEN on account of the road being cut by enemy.
Regt came into action immediately and Tac HQ was established at 423321 (ST ODENRODE). Tac HQ shelled for approx 30 mins.
RHQ moved to 431305.
431305 23   Regt shot on various M and U Targets and when road cleared prepared to move along axis.
  24 0700 Regt moved to N of NIJMEGEN crossing (sq 7163). RHQ Location 687671.
687671 25 0615
0635
0950
Target serial 2 fired.
Target serial 3 fired.
Regt engages enemy mortars.
Capt WA WOOD, MC, RA, killed in action 72083.
687671 26   124 Fd Regt in support of 69 Bde’s attack on HEMMEL.
687671 27   Regt continually engaging HB and Mortar posns. WS/ Lt D.G. JENNINGS RA (262325) reported missing believed POW
687671 28-30   See separate Appx "C" on Battle of Nijmegen Bridgehead.