Artefacts - The Desert Years



The purpose of this page is to provide a source of pictures and other information that may be of interest to anyone browsing the website, relating the Divisions service in North Africa. It will change as and when items are available to be added to it. Please be patient as one or two pictures may take a little while to load.


Light Tank on patrol in the desert, in 1940.


A Vickers MKVI Light Tank kicking up dust while on patrol in the desert.


Fort Capuzzo, captured in June 1940.

Bren Gun Carriers outside Fort Capuzzo after its capture in 1940


Tank Crew on a cold desert morning, by their MK VI Light Tank


An Armoured Car of 11th Hussars, towing away a 'prize' in the shape of an Italian L-3 Tankette after the Battle of Beda Fomm, February 1941

An Armoured Car of King's Dragoon Guards, towing away a 'prize' in the shape of an Italian L-3 Tankette armed with twin 8mm machine guns, after the Battle of Beda Fomm

The aftermath at Beda Fomm


The aftermath at Sidi Rezegh.


Wrecked German Tanks on the battlefield at Side Rezegh


The debris of war at Sidi Rezegh, Novermber 1941

Stuart (Honey) Tanks of 8th Hussar in the desert

Stuarts of the 8th Hussars in the desert, 1941 or 1942,


The Scots Greys in 1942, in a Grant tank

Grant Tank of the Scots Greys in the desert in 1942


Brigadier "Jock" Campbell (left) driving Major General Gott (the Divisional Commander) into Benghazi.


Brigadier 'Jock' Campbell driving Mjr General Gott into Benghazi


Morris Armoured Command Vehicle

Crusader tanks of 'A' Squadron, 3rd County of London Yeomanry, during a midday rest, in 1941

Crews and Tanks from A Squadron resting during the noon day sun. Not the use of canvas covers to provide protection for the crews from the sun.


Crusader tanks from 22nd Armoured Brigade on 26th November 1941, during Operation Crusader.


15th Light Anti-Aircraft (IOM) Regiment at Himeimat


Bofors 40mm Light Anti-Aircraft Gun from 15th LAA Regt. near Himeimat Ridge in 1942


The Italian Monument, marked the border between Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, known to the men of the Western Desert Force and later the 8th Army, as "Marble Arch".



Tripoli Victory Parade, February 1943

Inspecting C Squadron, 4th County of London Yeomanry.

Another photo of the inspection during the victory parade.


King George VI inspecting 11th Hussars on 21st June 1943, as Colonel-in-Chief of the Regiment.


Divisional signallers at Homs, 1943

 Courtesy of Len Cosford and his Daughter Pam Morris. Len Cosford is seated - right front.


The true cost of war for many men from both sides in the Western Desert - A lonely desert grave. To the desert, all men are equal.


How often do you folks at home
Think of sandy graves without a stone,
Where sleep our comrades brave and true,
Out in the desert at Mersa Matruh.

The raging sandstorms awake them not,
They're cool below but above is hot
The trails of the desert are over them,
They fought and died like Englishmen.

Do you not feel pride in your heart 
Where you think may be a friend took part 
in the struggles for the empire, Britain and you,
And lay down their lives at Mersa Matruh.

On honoured scroll their names shall shine,
And will not dim through pass of time
In years to come we will remember them
As soldiers of the empire and British men

Then forget them not you folks at home, 
Those men who lie in the desert alone,
They died for their country, Britain and you 
In the western desert of Mersa Matruh


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