Message Posted: 31 August 2006




I would like very much to make contact with ex serving members of the 1/6th Queens Royal Regiment who fought in the Battles for Villers Bocage & Briquessard to assist with information for personal research I am currently undertaking into those actions. In particular I would like any information or recall of my father, 6093270 PRIVATE NORMAN HILL who served with 1/6th Queens from North Africa to Normandy and was subsequently wounded in Briquessard on 18 June 1944.  Any information of the early days the unit spent in Normandy would be of great interest & very much appreciated.



TEL. 01823421341(Evenings) Taunton Somerset.

E-mail. Jim Hill


Message Posted: 31 August 2006


I'm searching for the relatives of a British soldier who, during WW II at Christmas 1944, left some personal properties with a family in the village Stramproy in the south of the Netherlands. His name and the army-unit are unknown, but because his posthumous properties may be of such importance for his family that I am trying to do everything possible to find them. First of all I have to find his unit in which he served, please log on to my website http://home.hccnet.nl/j.schonkeren to read the story and look at the pictures to see if you can help. The 7th Armoured Division was in the area, but which British unit was billeted in Stramproy during Christmas 1944? One of the tips we got is that it might have been the 5th Enniskillen Dragoon Guards. Your help would be very much appreciated 


Jan Schonkeren


Message Posted: 9 August 2004


Would anyone happen to know which units were based in Maschen near Hamburg, Germany during June and July of 1945 ? I am trying to locate two comrades of a friends father. Their names are Dr. Kenneth Wheeler and Peter Alexander Glenn and they were in Maschen in June and July of 1945. Peter Alexander Glenn was from Motherwell, Scotland and Dr. Kenneth Wheeler, a surgeon was from Cardiff, Wales.



Contact via: Mary-Ann


Message Posted: 7 September 2006


Chris Attwood would like any former members of the 8th Kings Royal Irish Hussars who were with the Regiment around June 1944, any in particular any members of "A" Squadron or HQ Squadron to contact me,  via his web site. http://freepages.military.rootsweb.com/~attwood/8thkri/index.htm


Message Posted: 31 August 2006 & updated 18 February 2011


My father Charles Rae (Jock) would like to find his army mates Ernie Clear and Charles Osborne (Jock). They served together in the R.H.A. 5th Regt, 'K' Battery. and saw action in the Middle East, Italy and Normandy to Villers-Bocage. We have now made contract with Ernie Clear in New Zealand which we are delighted with, so we would encourage those that live in hope of finding old comrades, not to give up. It is possible! 


Any news of the whereabouts of Charles Osborne, would still be very grateful received.

Many thanks


Contact via: Tim Rae


Message Posted: 10 May 04


Seeking Jack Wallace ex 107 Armoured Ordinance Sub Park based in Swaffham, Norfolk in 1944. Tom Cowlin, an old friend now living in Newport, South Wales would like to hear from him or from anyone who can help with this request. 


Please telephone 01633 612231.


Message Posted: 31 August 2006

My father, Tom Dyer, served as a gunner in DD (Jerboa) Battery, 4th Regiment RHA (both in 7th Armoured Division and later 4th Armoured Brigade), throughout the Second World War.  His son  would like to make contact with any of his former comrades who may still be alive. Reg Dyer 



Contact via: Reg Dyer


Message Posted: 4 September 2006

My service with the Division was of the briefest duration. I arrived in Berlin on 24 July 1945 from 33 RHU Hannover but was promptly posted out for service in the Far East on 30 July 1945. The squadron was occupying the Hermann Goring Luftwaffe barracks at Reinickendorf and it departed for another location near Spandau on 27 July. I understand the sappers were preparing the districts of Wedding and Reinickendorf for the French element of the four power occupation of Berlin. My most enduring memory is of a concert given by the Berlin Philharmonic in the Theatre des Westens conducted by Leo Bourchier (killed by a US patrol a few days later, he had kept a Jewish mistress throughout the war but was protected from the Gestapo) attended by troops of the Division all carrying arms which were mostly .303 rifles the thumping of which when the audience was seating itself was a sheer cacophony.


I would be most interested to know if any members of 33 RHU and the Division survive who remember that period.


I was eighteen years of age and a sapper with the regimental number 14456318 having enlisted at Euston Road in November 1944 and was discharged in Melbourne (I am Australian by birth) in March 1948. I found you web-site fascinating as a soldier entirely without campaign experience. I look forward to your response.


Peter Elder



Contact: Peter Elder


Message Posted: 6 October 2006


During the restoration of a house in South-Belgium I was working on the attic. There I found 2 letters and an envelope. This letter was addressed to Park J.S. Cpl from the 7th Armoured Divisional Signals "D" troop no. 1 squadron. This letter was stamped on the 28th of November 1944. I think right before the battle of the Bulge. I would like to ask if you know what happened to this Corporal. Or if you know if their are still relatives or family left who may be interested in this letter. Maybe it would than be possible that I can return the letter to the rightful owners.


Arjan Beks from the Netherlands



Contact: Arjan Beks

Message Posted: 4 November 2006


I'm searching on behalf of an elderly lady (81), 3 English soldiers who stayed with her and her family in the city Weert, county Limburg (south). They were desert rats, Dough (or Doug), Jerry and Norman, we don't have their last names, we know 2 played the piano very well.


On their uniform they wore an emblem with a black rat (4th Armoured Brigade) and were in jeeps and tanks. The family they stayed is called Briels, 5 girls, 3 boys, the father owned a bicycle shop and cab company.

I know it isn't much to go on but I hope you can help me find out if they are still alive and if so how I can contact them, it would mean very much to a dear old lady.



Contact via: Veenema Family


Note from Webmaster: The comment about tanks and jeeps probably narrows the search down to 3rd/4th County of London Yeomanry, The Scots Greys and 44th Royal Tank Regiment, plus possibly (though unlikely) 4th Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, as the latter used Self Propelled Guns (build on tank Chassis) and a few tanks too.

Message Posted: 8 December 2006


My father Frederick Stanley Wilkinson served with the 3rd RTR, the 4th Armoured Brigade, 7th Armoured Division - Desert Rats. He then served with the 29th Armoured Brigade, 11th Armoured Division with the 3rd RTR in main land Europe. He is very much alive and well in living in Ripley, North Yorkshire.

If anyone can supply any information regarding any WW2 colleagues please send us the information.

Many thanks

Paul Wilkinson

Contact: Paul Wilkinson


Message Posted: 14 January 2007


I was transferred from the 3rd Infantry Division to the 79th Armoured Division in April 1945 there HQ was near Luneburg Heath Germany. Shortly after this the Division was sent back to the UK for disbandment and subsequently became S.A.D.E nr Woodbridge in Suffolk. 18 month's later there was another  move to Tidworth. My demob number was up after this. 


I would like to hear from any old members of the division and subsequently what happen to S.A.D.E. after this (Specialised Armoured Experimental Establishment).

Many thanks

Albert Carter



Contact: Albert Carter


Message Posted: 2 February 2007


If any one has information on the following two people.


Robert William Durrack, who was a medic in WW2. He was on the D-day beaches and was one of the first to help liberate (if that could ever be done) Auschwitz concentration camp, a harrowing time.


Stan Crisp a cook in Desert rats who served in Desert.



Contact: Rod Scott (Chairman)


Message Posted: 4 June 2007


Kevin Hall a Driver in 'C' Platoon, 67th Company R.A.S.C., 22nd Armoured Brigade, 7th Armoured Division, would like to get in touch with anyone who served with him in that platoon 1943-1947. In particular, Drivers Freddy Hathaway; Titch Walker; Taffy Thomas, Arthur (Tojo) Pratt; and J J Rogers or their families. Or indeed anyone else who would like to get in touch.



Contact: Victoria Manser or Tel: 01257 234420


Message Posted: 22 June 2007


Lieutenant Arthur Lyndon Watts M.C. served in 'G' Squadron, 2nd Royal Gloustershire Hussars (as a Trooper and Corporal) from January 1942 until being commissioned and joining 46th (Liverpool Welsh) Royal Tank Regiment in October 1942 until the end of the war. His daughter (Diane Williams) would like to hear from anyone who knew him or has an interest in either Regiment. After the war he was the editor of the 46th RTR 'Red Dragon' Old Comrades Magazine. One name of interest is Lt.  Robert (Bob) Irving, who lived in Gateshead in 1945.



Contact: Diane Williams


Message Posted: 26 June 2007


Leonard Cosford served in the 7th Armoured Division Signals units as among other things as a Dispatch Rider. He served with the Division from the Deserts of North Africa to Berlin, being awarded the Belgium Croix de Guerre.  His daughter Pam would like to hear from anyone who knew him. Leonard also served in the Norway Campaign of 1940.



Contact: Pam Morris


Message Posted: 22 October 2007


21st or 621st Field Squadron, Royal Engineers, 1942 to 1945


Looking for anyone who served with or may have knowledge of the above unit.

Also anybody with specific knowledge regarding Operation Blackcock and the crossing of the Vloed Beek on 17 January 1945. Also any member of the Salvation Army who may have visited Red Shield clubs associated with 7th Armoured Division locations during this time.



Contact: Tony Blyth

Message Posted: 18 February 2008


Mr. Steve Young is looking for past members of K Battery 5th RHA with a view to get them to take part in this years reunion which will take place in London. 



Contact: Steve Young

Message Posted: 18 February 2008


If anyone is planning a trip to Libya this year Karoline Wirth would love to hear from you. Karoline is looking to accompanying a veteran going back to Libya for the purpose of making a film, should you be interested in this opportunity you can contact Karoline by email as below. 



Contact: Karoline Wirth

Message Posted: 29 March 2008


George Marks, who served with the 5th Royal Tank Regiment in North Africa would like to contact any living comrades who served in the Regiment in North Africa or Europe. In particular, any members of "B" Squadron "Easy" tank. If 'Eggy' Egelton, 'Bangle' Bowman or Sergeant Briggs are still alive he would very much like to hear from them or their surviving relatives. 



Contact: Geoff Marks

Message Posted: 31 May 2008


Janice Whelan would like to hear from anyone who knew her father Royal Engineer Sapper Mike Whelan, of Q movements. He was based in Berlin during the blockade. Janice is particularly keen to hear from anyone who knew him, or Dan Slade, or Christa Rekowsky.



Contact: Janice Whelan

Message Posted: 5 September 2008


Vicki Barker, whose mother was born in Rethem/Aller a few weeks before the “Battle of Rethem”, would like to hear from anyone who fought in the “Battle of Rethem” in April, 1945.



Contact: Vicki Barker

Message Posted: 9 September 2008


My dad Alf Parish was a "Desert Rat", he was a gunner with 41 Battery of 15th Isle of Man Light Aircraft Regiment.

After serving in 2nd A.A. Regt in the BEF in France, 1940, he served with 117th Battery, 30th L.A.A. Regt before being posted to 15th (IOM) L.A.A. Regt in 1941. He then became a Desert Rat when the 15th came under the command of 7th Armoured Division in 1942.

Dad stayed with the Division throughout the remainder of the war and was therefore under training at Thetford Forest Norfolk where he was stationed in the village of Diss at Uplands House. The photo is of 41st battery in August 1946 dad in in the centre of the second row.


41st Battery, 15th (IOM) LAA. Please click for a larger image.

Does anyone remember him or have any stories to recount about the adventures of his regiment. A tall order, any information will be useful and very much appreciated.

Contact: Ray Parish

Message Posted: 17 October 2008


John Dahmen is trying to trace Daniel Silver or any of his relatives because he left some personal items and property with a Family Smeets at Marinusstraat Weert, in the Netherlands. He was based there in April-May 1945 with the Suffolk Regiment. A photograph of him from the items is shown below.


Daniel Silver, Suffolk Regiment circa 1944-45.



Contact: John Dahmen

Message Posted: 30 October 2008


1/5th, 1/6th & 1/7th QUEENS ROYAL REGIMENT

Al the Granddaughter of Sergeant Harold Reeves who served with the Queens 1940-45 would love to hear from anyone who served with these battalions during WW2.

Contact: Al

Message Posted: 2 December 2008


Tracey would love to know anything about her grandad, Harold Cropper, all that is known is that he was a driver with the Desert Rats.



Contact: Tracey

Message Posted: 2 December 2008


Does anyone remember Frederick William Volter who served in the Desert Rats. It is known he was in Burma which means he was in 7th Armoured Brigade (The Green Rats) in 1941 and was shot in the arm. He lived to the age of 95 

If anyone recognises him and has any stories or photographs please reply to his granddaughter, Bev Hope

Contact: Bev Hope

Message Posted: 20 January 2009


Klaus Volkmann recently traced his biological father, Alan Dunbar, after his death in 2005. As part of his research Klaus has obtained information on his father and knows he was in the Royal Signals serving in North Africa, Italy, France, Belgium, Holland and Germany. After the war he was in 7th Armoured Division Signal Reg. BAOR in Verden nearby Bremen N. Germany from 1945 to 1947. However, Klaus would like to try and trace the man next to him on the right hand side of the photograph below. You can find out more from Klaus' website site. www.lutebouwer.com/missing_my_father.htm.

Alan Dunbar on the left, but who is the man on the right hand side if this photograph, please?



Contact: Klaus Volkmann


Message Posted: 21 February 2009


Stuart Wain, the grandson of Sgt Frank Wain, 65th Anti-Tank RA (Norfolk Yeomanry), would love to hear from anybody who served with the same regiment or knew him. He is trying to document his service and believes that in Dec 1945 he was stationed in Anis Germany, so any help will be most welcome.



Contact: Stuart Wain


Message Posted: 1 May 2009


Tpr Harold Dixon, served in A Squadron, 3rd County of London Yeomanry, in North Africa, Sicily, Italy and NW Europe, His grandson, Richard Ogden, would like to hear from anyone who knew him or is in the below photograph in North Africa in the winter of 1942/43


Men from a Sqn, 3rd CLY winter 1942/1943. Does anyone know these men or Harold Dixon? Please click for a larger image.


The men in the photograph are:

Back Row (left to right):     ? – Hadley - ? - ? – Tpr Harold Dixon (with white dressings on his face)

Middle Row (left to right):     ? – Francis – Cpl Doug Endacott – Clarke – Fyles

Front Row (left to right):         Boles – Daley - Tpr Ronny Bentham



Contact:  Richard Ogden


Message Posted: 5 May 2009


I would like to make contact with anyone who remembers my father Arthur Cartner from Manchester.  He was a desert rat and was taken prisoner in North Africa from whence he was taken to a German POW camp via Bari or Brindisi in Italy.  I know little more than that except that he might have been a dispatch rider.  Thanks and very good wishes  Nadine Cartner  



Contact: Nadine Cartner

Message Posted: 1 July 2009


I wonder if any tank veteran reader has any memory of Capt . Brian Millen (F . B . Millen) of the 44th RTR . He served with the Regiment from 1942 in North Africa, and saw service in Sicily , Italy , Normandy and Germany . Names of comrades he once mentioned are: Teddy Foster, Don Mew, Guy Cunningham, Jack Robinson (wireless operator), Col . Loakman . Brian was my father-in-law and I should be pleased to hear any recollections of him .   David R . A . Pearce  


Contact:  David Pearce

Message Posted: 1 July 2009

My father's cousin Rex Ingram was killed at Villers Bocage on 13/6/1944. He was a Lieutenant in the 4th County of London Yeomanry. He was in command of a Stuart tank when he was killed in the first few minutes of the engagement. He only joined the Regiment in January that year so the chances of anyone remembering him are slight but I would like to hear from anyone who knew him.

Many thanks

Paul Carpenter

Contact: Paul Carpenter

Message Posted: 10 August 2009

I am interested in hearing from anyone who served with or has knowledge of George James Hearn.


He enlisted on 06.06.1940 leaving Bovington for Egypt on 03.01.1941 where he arrived on 09.03.1941 and was attached to R.A.C Base Depot before being posted to 3rd Hussars on 28.03.1941 as a Tank Driver. He was with M.E.F (06.09.1941); I.C.Dep 45 T.C (22.11.1942); 51 Coy R.A.S.C (14.06.1943) and embarked for A.A.I (20.04.1944) and B.N.A.F. George was admitted to hospital on 30.09.1942 (M.E.F) and on 19.01.1943 (U.E) for two weeks each time. 


He was awarded The Italy Medal, Africa Star and 8th Army Clasp and made Sergeant at the end of 1944. Embarking for U.K on Python 23 on 09.07.1945 he was posted to 'Y' List with effect from 04.02.1946 when he returned home to Suffolk.


If any of the above information reminds you of George we would like to hear from you. As with so many soldiers after the war his experiences were never mentioned and since he died in 1980 we cannot ask him now.


Thank you in anticipation of your help.


Carol Avery


Contact: Carol Avery 


Message Posted: 19 August 2009

I am interested in tracing the two men pictured in this photograph, taken in Namur, Belgium in December 1944 just before the German Offensive, commanded by Field Marshall Von Rundsted, better know as the Battle of the Bulge.


Two men probably from 2nd Household Cavalry Regt, Namur Dec 1944. Please click on the photo for large image.


The men concerned have been identified as being part of Guards Armoured Division and most probably from 2nd Household Cavalry Regiment, formed from the Life Guards and Royal Horse Guards. They stayed in Namur, sleeping in beds willing provided by the local population for 2 or 3 days, until they left to counter the German Offensive. I was a boy of 8 years old at the time and never knew who they were or what happened to them. 


If anyone knows who they were or has information about then please contact me


Raymond Mabille


Contact: Raymond Mabille

Message Posted: 20 January 2010

I am trying to contact anyone who either served or has information about 50th Royal Tank Regiment. I'm trying to find out more information about my late father Leonard Howden. I have a photo of him (the guy in the centre without the beret and holding his hard tack ration) on a patrol at Sparta, Greece, which is also shown in Stephen D Hamilton's 50th Royal Tank Regiment - complete History. My Dad spoke about the war in terms of football and cricket matches, Greek vineyards and malaria, he steadfastly avoided other descriptions except a few months before he died he commented about war atrocities on a news programme saying that he had witnessed one in Greece, presumably Sparta and that he had also received a flesh wound in his eyebrow from a Greek sniper one night, which I believe was in Athens. 

50th RTR on patrol in Sparta, Greece 1946. Click on the picture for larger image.

I know my Dad was in Tunis in 1943 having reached North Africa after El Alamein. He then went through Sicily and Italy before heading to Greece in 1944. I'm trying to establish whether he served with 50 RTR throughout this period and if so in what Squadron and Troop or whether he was a part of B Squadron of 46 RTR that was later assigned to 50 RTR as it's D Squadron. His name is listed at the back of Stephen Hamilton's book but without his Army number or Troop which makes me wonder whether he was from the assigned 46 RTR Troop.

Any help that could be given would be greatly appreciated, as I am trying to build a family journal.


Contact: Bob Howden

Message Posted: 22 February 2010

My father George Henry Scoging was a dispatch rider with the 8th Army, Desert Rats. He hailed from Greenwich London and his good pal was Fred Lewis from Pontyberem Wales. If there is anyone who recalls them I would love to hear from you.
George has lived in South Africa for the past 35 years and is 89 years old. He is in a retirement home in Johannesburg, but unfortunately he has alzheimers, though this has not dimmed his memory of his war years, with him regularly entertaining the other residents with the 'war songs'
Hope to hear from someone who's family may recall George Scoging.



Contact: Christina Coetzee

Message Posted: 13 April 2010


I am trying to find out some more info on my grandfather and maybe some of his friends he served with.  His name was Malcolm MacDonald Bain from Edinburgh, Scotland, and he served with the 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars and became a POW early on in 1940 in the city of Mersa Matruh in 1940-41.  If anyone has anymore info, like friends he served with, this would be a great help.



Contact: Thomas Bain

Message Posted: 13 April 2010


Does anyone remember my father William Miller from Aberdeen Dispatch Rider, a desert rat who was in the 8th Army Royal Artillery. Served 1938-1946 in North Africa, Sicily, Italy France and Germany?



Message Posted: 7 June 2010


I was lead to your very interesting website whilst researching Didlington Hall, near Mundford, Norfolk. I am an amateur entomologist specialising in ants, and have been looking at the possibility of there being any past or present populations of the Wood Ant (Formica rufa, the large species which builds mounds of twigs and pine needles above its nests) in East Anglia, especially Norfolk and Suffolk. On the face of it, there were a few sites in Suffolk, now extinct, and that's it. But also a few, unproven, anecdotal reports.

One of these anecdotal reports was by the late author, international walker and naturalist, John Hillaby, who served in the Army in WW2, and was based for a time at Didlington. I don't know if he was a Desert Rat, but I know, of course, that the 7th Armoured was based there in 1944, so he may well have been. In the 1980s, Mr Hillaby wrote a small piece in New Scientist magazine in which he briefly mentioned his time in the Army stationed in Norfolk. He recalled searching a wood ants' nest there for special beetles only found living with wood ants (he too was an amateur entomologist!), much to the amusement, he said, of his soldier colleagues! The incident he subsequently briefly mentioned in one of his books ("Journey Home").

Knowing that wood ants were otherwise not recorded from Norfolk, I wrote to John Hillaby about this incident, and he replied that he was in no doubt that the ants were wood ants, and that he searched the nest with bare hands and arms, which - as you may guess if you are familiar with these ants - is something he did not easily forget! He told me that the nest was in the grounds of Didlington Hall, (apparently, since demolished, though the grounds remain). Mr Hillaby has since passed away.

My reason for writing is just on the off-chance that some other servicemen stationed at Didlington at that time may just recall seeing wood ants there - they are not easy to miss, being large and aggressive with their large nests! Maybe even somebody may have known John Hillaby, in the same unit, perhaps? The grounds are not open to the public as far as I know, though I have searched briefly in neighbouring areas, without success, so any historical information would be very welcome. If you have any information on the current status of the area, that may also be helpful.

A long shot, I know!

My apologies in taking your time up reading this - I told you it was an oddball enquiry, but there was a little reason in the madness, as I hope you might agree!

My very best wishes to you and all the Desert Rats!

Philip Attewell


Contact: Philip Attewell


Message Posted: 26 July 2010


I am looking for any information on my uncle Algernon Willcox (Algy) who my father always told me served with the Desert Rats. H died approx. 44 years ago, and came from Spalding, Lincolnshire. Any information would be much appreciated.


Sara Holden nee Willcox


Contact: Sara Holden

Message Posted: 12 September 2010 


I'm just after any information about my grandfather George Bloomfield who I have recently discovered was in the desert rats. Unfortunately he talked very little of the war to my father before he died and I was too young to ask. Any information anyone may have on him big or small would be great.


Many thanks


Michael Bloomfield 


Contact: Michael Bloomfield

Message Posted: 4 October 2010 


I am trying to contact anyone who may have served with my father Gordon Johnson, in 'C' Squadron, 5th RTR from 1943 to 1947. The attached photograph shows him and the crew of his tank during the parade in Ghent in September 1945 to commemorate the liberation a year beforehand.  

Unfortunately he did not talk about his wartime experiences very much before he died, so is anyone has any information about him or his unit I would be pleased to hear from them.


Many thanks


Gillian Johnson 


Contact: Gillian Johnson

Message Posted: 8 October 2010 


I am tracing the footsteps of my Grandfather Melville David, a Welshman who served as a fitter with 'A' Squadron, 5th RTR throughout the war. He boxed for his Regiment and loved a drink and sing song. He had a very distinctive turn in his left eye. 


I have a photo of him taken in March 1943 on a Tank, below, 


The reverse of the photo states " 1st and 5th Tank Regiments and 1st Rifle Brigade". So I think it was just a bunch of lads gathered for a photo rather than an actual tank crew. Do you recognise anyone in the photo? It was taken by a Lt. McLaren of the AFPU. Where was the photo taken? 


If anyone has any knowledge of the role the fitters played I would be really appreciative if you could contact me as I have so many questions. Were fitters part of a tank crew? My Grandfather said he did used to drive the tank around. How many fitters would there have been in a squadron?




Ashley Rossiter


Contact: Ashley Rossiter

Message Posted: 29th December 2010 


I am wondering if anyone recognises the mascot pictured with my father Maurice Yates (on the right of the photograph) of 150 Battery, 42nd LAA Regt and later on the Royal Engineers from December 1944 in Italy.



I would also be interested in hearing from any of my father's comrades.


Contact: Barbara Coleman

Message Posted: 31st March 2011


Michael W Kelly, from South African was a SAPPER deployed to North Africa, 1940 to 1942. He was captured and sent as POW to Italy, where he escaped, was recaptured and then sent as POW to Germany until the end of the war.

My father-in-law is now 88 years old. It would mean so much to him to make contact with Sappers and Desertrats involved in North Africa campaigns or who were POW's.

Thank you

Gail Kelly


Contact: Gail Kelly

Message Posted: 31st March 2011


I would like to know if anyone has any details about my father Alfred Thomas Richards who was a dispatch rider in North Africa. I know he was also at Monte Cassino, but other than that I know no other details.


Alfred Richards (centre) and friends

Alfred Richards


Many thanks,


Irene Moulton


Contact: Irene Moulton

Message Posted: 10 May 2011

I am interested in hearing from anyone who served with or has knowledge of George James Hearn.


He enlisted on 06.06.1940 leaving Bovington for Egypt on 03.01.1941 where he arrived on 09.03.1941 and was attached to R.A.C Base Depot before being posted to 3rd Hussars on 28.03.1941 as a Tank Driver. He was with M.E.F (06.09.1941); I.C.Dep 45 T.C (22.11.1942); 51 Coy R.A.S.C (14.06.1943) and embarked for A.A.I (20.04.1944) and B.N.A.F. George was admitted to hospital on 30.09.1942 (M.E.F) and on 19.01.1943 (U.E) for two weeks each time. 


He was awarded The Italy Medal, Africa Star and 8th Army Clasp and made Sergeant at the end of 1944. Embarking for U.K on Python 23 on 09.07.1945 he was posted to 'Y' List with effect from 04.02.1946 when he returned home to Suffolk.


If any of the above information reminds you of George we would like to hear from you. As with so many soldiers after the war his experiences were never mentioned and since he died in 1980 we cannot ask him now.


Thank you in anticipation of your help.


Carol Avery


Contact: Carol Avery


Message Posted: 26th May 2011


I would love to know if anyone has any information on my father Eric Barnby. He served extensively in Egypt, North Africa, Italy, France, Belgium, Holland and Germany, and was promoted to Captain in 1943. He married my mother, a Belgian in 1946.


He signed up with the Tyne/Tees at his home city of Hull. I believe his unit came under the 50th (Northumberland) Division, under Montgomery. We know he served in 50th Division Petrol Company in the BEF (Dunkirk 1940) and later in the Desert, including 522 and 524 Companies RASC and was also with 104 Field Ambulance RAMC. He also served in Normandy. He may have also been a Prisoner of War along with Major-General Messervy when they were captured during the Gazala Offensive in 1942, escaping back to the British lines. He was later in 4 TRG BDE, RASC. 


I am just trying to piece things together as like so many, he never spoke about the war. 


My sincere thanks to anyone that can help


Contact: Jackie Cooper


Message Posted: 15th June 2011


I would like to hear from anyone who knew my my great uncle Henry (Harry) Tong who served with the 'J' Battery, 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery and was killed near Salerno on 20th September 1943. Henry was from Bolton and I would appreciate it anyone who knew him or has information on 3rd RHA in Italy could contact me to assist me in my family research. 


We believe he joined 'J' Bty and 3rd RHA by at least October 1942, possibly beforehand, and he is recorded as a DVR (Driver) is that helps anyone.


Many thanks,


Contact: John Norris


Message Posted: 9th July 2011


My father (Tpr. Ronald Ryder) was in the 5th RTR, C squadron, and his Cromwell tank was destroyed on 6th September 1944 at a crossroads 3km east of Nazareth, just outside of Ghent. He was severely wounded, but was rescued by a brave and compassionate German soldier who heard him screaming for help, clambered inside the burning tank and pulled him out to safety. The Germans were retreating, so they tended him as best they could and then left him in a farm building where he was soon found and taken to a field hospital. I would be very interested in contacting any surviving members of his tank crew (a long shot now – I know) or any of their relatives. I’m very interested in trying to piece together the details surrounding this event and share some of the things my father told me before he died in 2000. The names and last known fate of the other crew members are -

Lt Eckersley (OK)
Tpr Taylor E. (Wounded)
Tpr Smith J. (Wounded/Missing believed POW) *
Tpr De Bourcier (Wounded/Missing believed POW)


* Originally believed to be wounded and believed to be a PoW in the Regimental War Diaries, but later confirmed as Missing in Action and declared a casualty of war.

Many thanks,

Contact:  David Ryder



Message Posted: 4th October 2011


Does anyone remember my dad, whose name was Jack Luke. He came from Trafford Park in Manchester. 


What I do know is as follows: He was in the TA as war broke out and was in the Eighth army serving in the desert and later in Italy. He drove trucks and this was associated with the tanks. He became a Corporal and one of his friends was a chap called Alfie Hulse. I also know at one point he was a Despatch rider. Sadly he died age 64 yrs in 1984. 


Any information would be great.


Many thanks,


Contact:  Bill Grant


Message Posted: 2nd February 2012


My father Sam Beardmore was a Sergeant in the Desert Rats Tank Corps and I recently found his service number and was wondering if anyone knew a way that I could find out more about his time in the service.


Unfortunately, my father passed away in 2004 and I have also found an old photo album that he made up whilst overseas. If anyone knew my father I would be very pleased to hear from them.

Thank you,


Contact:  Ann Spiers


Message Posted: 23rd October 2012


Does anyone know or have any information that they can share with me about my grandfather Albert Turner the man on the right of the photo holding the dog lead, in the picture below.


I know very little about his time during WW2 this picture is the only thing I have and I only know that he is supposed of served in the desert rats.

Please anything you could tell me about the photo or maybe if you you know the other men would be much appreciated.

Many Thanks,

Contact: Billy Turner


Message Posted: 17th January 2013

My name is Sandra (journalist from Latvia) and I am looking for someone who knows Conrad Henry Peterson (born in Dublin 1904) served in Royal Medical Corps (RAMC). He was in North Africa in 1942

.Conrad Peterson

The photo I have of him was taken in Luton in 1940.

Does anyone have any information about him please?

Many Thanks,

Contact: Sandra Bondarevska

Message Posted: 17th January 2013

My father had the Jerboa insignia on his shirt in a photo and served in the 8th Army. Alas records are very far and few because of my mother burning his processions a few years ago. Going on all the data I have read/collected it seems he was link to the Desert Rats?

He got the usual medals but has the Africa star (with the 8th Army clasp) and the Italy Star He was from Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire and his name was Leslie Simmonds. I'm sure his number was 6479625. 

I'm not looking for all the gore, but rather a brief history of where my dad would have fought. I am currently going through the process of trying to get his service records.

Any information will be most welcome.

Many thanks,

Contact: Steve Simmonds

Message Posted: 1st February 2013

Please help me in my search to my biological father. I like to tell you everything that’s known to me. I was born on the 5 of July 1945 as Charles Moors. The name of my mother is Mayke Moors. She was born on the 25 of June 1922 and died in 1987. The only thing she told me was that my father was an English soldier and she could (or would) tell me more about it.

This is the information I have.


Weert was liberated on the 22 September 1944 by soldiers of the 1st Battalion, The Suffolk Regiment. At that moment my mother was working at the Distribution Office. She lived with her parents and her brother in a big house, for that time, that was situated at the Roermondseweg 43 in Weert. Next-door to them, at number 45, was the building company of the well known firm named Beelen. Across the road there was a filling station named Bloemen.

The 1st Battalion of the Suffolk Regiment stayed in Weert only for a couple of days, from 22 September till 26 September 1944, and then they moved on. They were succeeded by the 4th Royal Horse Artillery and the Sharpshooters, that were units of the 4th Armoured Brigade, that state in Weert till 8 October 1944. The officers of them were quartered at houses of citizens. After their departure the Americans arrived in Weert. My mother became pregnant in the period 26 September till 8 October 1944.

In that period three English soldiers stayed in my mother’s home. A confidante of my mother told me before she died that one of these three soldiers was my father and that his first name is the same as mine is now: Charles.

Many years of research not added more information than mentioned above. What I did discover, however, were the names of three soldiers that stayed at the same time at the near-by Paulusstraat 110: Tony, Ate and Ted. At the house of my mother and her neighbours (Roermondseweg 43 and 45 ) the kitchen of the soldiers was situated and the goods were kept in stock there.

This is my story and I hope the information above can help you to complete the missing pages in my search after so many years. I realise that after all these years my father may be dead, but any information anyone has will be gratefully received.


Many thanks


Charles van de Langerijt


Contact: Charles van de Langerijt

Message Posted: 14th February 2013


Would anyone be able to confirm that there was a Canadian woman doctor in the RAMC who was attached to the 7th Armoured Division in England? 

We are told that she was Capt. Janet B. White (photos below). The right hand photograph clearly shows the Jerboa Shoulder Flash. 


An American pilot who knew her during 1944 is wondering what became of her and we are trying to help him out. Unfortunately, we are unable to verify her name, etc.

Any details you could give us would be very much appreciated. 


Many thanks


Larry Richer

(Library and Archives Canada)

Contact: Larry Richer

Message Posted: 22nd February 2013


Two years ago I have launched a website dedicated to the Commonwealth soldiers buried in the Netherlands.

I would like to get in touch with Veterans or Relatives from former Soldiers of the 7th Armoured Division whom where billeted in Sittard and Geleen in November/December 1944.

I also would like to hear from Veterans who have participated in Operation Blackcock (The Battle for the Roer Triangle).

Thank you for placing the message,


Jan de Wilde

Life Member of the Welsh Guards Veteran Association (Swansea Branch)
Honourable Member of 1 Royal Tank Regiment Association (Sefton Branch)


Contact: Jan de Wilde

Message Posted: 24th July 2013


Does anyone remember Peter Maurice Turner who was a Desert Rat in the middle east? He was in 'B' Squadron, 8th Royal Tank Regt and was stationed in Palestine and later in Graz Austria. He died when I was young and as such I never talked to him about the war. I am just curious to know if anybody remembers him.


Pat ling - Daughter 


Contact: Pat Ling


Message Posted: 29th August 2013


I am trying to find some information on these two pictures they are off my Granddad. He was a tank driver in the 2nd Royal Tank Regiment (Desert Rats). Can anyone put a date or location to these pictures or would anyone have any memories of an Edmund Watson or Ted Watson as he was known from, who came from Oxford, in the UK.




Contact: Christina Watson

Message Posted: 21st January 2014


I am looking for information regarding my fathers service and the story behind the badges and his Desert Rat pin in the attached picture. His name was Frank Reginald Littler (Bill Littler) and was born in 1919 in Runcorn, Cheshire and served in the North Africa campaign from the outset, possibly in the 141st Field Park Squadron, Royal Engineers, from Chester.

He had army pals: Jed Capner, Mike Kydd, Tubby Bracegirdle and others he used to talk about and attended many reunions in Chester until probably around 1999 or 2000.

Click on picture for larger image

Does anyone know of him at all? 

Any contact or info would be very interesting to me


Contact: Rosalind Griffiths (née Littler)


Message Posted: 21st January 2014


Richard George Tossell joined up in the British Army in Barnstaple North Devon. "Dick" was an ambulance driver in Egypt, North Africa by spring 1941. He was taken prisoner mid April 1941 when the British surrendered after "enemy attack in Lybia", sent to Sulmona PoW camp in Italy by fall of 1941. He was part of a prisoner exchange spring of 1943 and repatriated home to Woolacombe, Devon early May 1943.


Through some glitch he was called back to service (despite the Geneva convention rule about returned POWs not re-entering the war), and he then drove tank transport vehicles from France to Germany to the front lines and was also a driver for an officer for a while. When they finally realized the mistake he was offered a choice to stay or return home, with him opting to stay till the end of the war. After the war he returned to work as a double deck bus driver in Barnstaple/Ilfracombe North Devon until he retired.

I was wondering where he enlisted (North Devon) sometime prior to spring 1941 and as he was being a driver does anyone know which unit he might have been with.


Any information will be most welcome.


Contact: Mary Tossell



Message Posted: 3rd February 2014


I am looking for information regarding my father's time in the Army. I know he was at El Alamein, he laid telephone cables and that he was at Monte Casino. His name was Peter Hannah Kennedy and he was born in June 1920.


Does anyone have any information that may be of use to me?


Contact: Peter Kennedy


Message Posted: 3rd July 2014

My dad George Gordon Critchley 353062 served in the 8th army in the Gun pits Pembrey aged 18 I am his daughter  I have a photo of him in the gun pits with a J Barnes. Does anyone know if J Barnes still alive?

Any info on my dad would be great!


Contact: Janice Critchley


Message Posted: 3rd July 2014


I am researching my Grandfathers military service, and would be interested to hear from anyone with information concerning him, however small or insignificant, anything would be appreciated.

His name was Leslie Chapman (nickname was 'Chippy')  He joined the Royal Tank Corps in 1936, and became a Tank Driver.  He served in Egypt until war was declared when he then became part of the 1st Royal Tank Regiment.  During his time in North Africa, he was seconded to the Royal Engineers and worked with them in Turkey preparing military buildings and airstrips.  He came back to 1st RTR, and stayed with them until their return to Britain, when he was transferred to the Royal Army Service Corps.

I would also be interested in making contact with other people researching the Royal Tank Corp/1st Royal Tank Regiment, especially during the early period of the war when it formed part of the Mobile Force.


Contact: David Ashman

Message Posted: 17th August 2014


My grand father Reginald Gibson served in the 7th Armored Division during the North Africa Campaign and in Italy where he was injured and returned to the UK. I was wondering if anyone new him, even if you just spoke to him once. He was from the channel islands, Guernsey and I am not sure of his title in the Army, but  I know he rode a motorcycle.


Paul Gibson


Contact: Paul Gibson


Message Posted: 20th July 2018


During the last days I had contact to the family-helping of BA, the veterans of. They all have not lists and are unable to help. I guess, due to security and personal rights.

There will be a celebration of veterans, employees and others in Nottingham on the 17th of June, but unfortunatly, I can't get there.

The names: Dennis Price, born in Cardiff, nearly October/November 1941/1942. I was born in 1957 and he was 15 years elder. Nickname "Tough", He was divorced and had a son. After leaving Celle he lived somewhere in the southern from London.

The other one: Ken or Kenneth. 


The family name I have forgotten. He was from Birmingham, married and was a Baptist. He was 17 years elder than me, so born nearly 1939/1940. From him I do not know anything else.

Both left Celle in 1988/1989.

Both were majors.



Kerstin Domaradzka


Contact: Kerstin Domaradzka


Message Posted: 20th July 2018


My Grandfather, Kenneth Burton, was wireless operator to the Commander Royal Artillery during and after the Normandy landings. I believe this was Brigadier Roy Mews, who was replaced in August 1944 by Brigadier Tristram Lyon-Smith. 

I would like to find as much detail as possible about these gentlemen’s journey through Europe, as I intend to re-trace the route by motorcycle.

If any one has any details regarding Ken or the Brigadiers and their activities or journeys and places visited, do kindly get in touch with:

James Burton


Contact: James Burton


Message Posted 30th December 2020


My Grandfather, Trooper William Fox, was one of a crew of five killed in a Grant Tank of 3rd King's Own Hussars, on 2nd November 1942, at the Second battle of El Alamein. I am trying to contact any of the relatives of the other four men who died with him on that day, as they are buried together as a crew at the CWGC Cemetery at El Alamein, in Plot IX, Row D, Graves 9-13. They are:-


Lt Carson Wilfred Kenny (of South Africa) husband of Shirley Nower Kenny, of Cape Town, South Africa.

Lance Corporal Rowland George Hill

Trooper Frank Henson, Son of James Henson, and of Martha Henson, of Long Eaton, Derbyshire

Trooper Bernard Brayshaw, husband of Nellie and father of John and David of Menston-in-Wharfedale, Yorkshire.

Trooper William Fox.


This is a photoshopped image of all their graves together



Jase Fox


Contact: Jase Fox




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