1st. Tanks and personnel moved out to Marshalling
Area at 0815 hrs. Reveille 0500 hrs. The remaining personnel were sealed in
2nd. All the remaining personnel of the Regt. moved out
to Camp J. 6. at 1200 hrs. arriving at approximately 1300 hrs by route via Haywards heath, Camp J. 10 is sealed but provided with an excellent NAAFI
and a cinema.
Tanks remained in J.2. Everyone had a good rest.
3rd. At 1600 hrs the D + 2 and D + 4 personnel left
J.6. to proceed to Marshalling
Area D Day vehicles and personnel in
Newhaven, leading tank leaving marshalling area at 1500 hrs. Loading
commenced at 1800 hrs and was completed the same day.
4th. Bad weather made it impossible to sail on this day
and the whole operation was postponed for 24 hours.
In the afternoon personnel returned to T.C.V. to J.2. where they had a hot
meal and a shower and went back again.
hrs. Craft move out at 0830 hrs and anchored about 3 miles outside the harbour. We finally sailed at 1230 hrs. Sea was rough and some personnel
6th. D Day.
Touched down at 1030 hrs on White beach and had practically speaking a
dry landing. A terrible jam on the beach where no organization appeared to
be operating and no marked exits were to be seen. The majority of our tanks
remained stationary for approx. 1 hour. Spasmodic shelling and a considerable
amount of sniping. Traffic control seemed nonexistent and even after leaving
the beach vehicles remained head to tail for long periods on the only
available routes. It was then decided not to proceed to the arranged
Assembly Area and Sqns were ordered to rally in the area south of
HERMANVILLE. In order to save time C.O. 2 KSLI decided that his bn should
proceed on foot instead of riding on the tanks. Porpoises were dumped in the
The C.O. appreciated that the ridge in the vicinity of Pt. 61 was ground
vital to us and ordered "C" Sqn. to seize it forthwith. They galloped for it
and shortly after reported it clear of the enemy. At this juncture Comd. 185
Bde ordered "A" Sqn to proceed on a special task in connection with the
clearing up of the strongpoint HILLMAN which was still holding out. R.H.Q.
and "B" Sqn. then proceeded on the axis of advance. "B" Sqn was engaged by
an 88mm A/Tk gun from the right flank which destroyed 2 "Fascine" Tanks, 2
other Sherman IIIs and a Sherman IV (O.P. tank) and the M.O.'s half track.
"B" Sqn engaged and the gun was silenced. The C.O. then ordered "B" Sqn to
take up battle positions on the Pt. 61 feature with tanks to the S.W. in
case an outflanking attack by enemy armour should develop. "C" Sqn. was now
engaged by a Bty of 122mm guns firing East from the wooded area around
PERIER-SUR-LE-DANS, and temporarily held up. The KSLI were now fighting hard
in BEUVILLE but the C.O. asked for a Coy to clear up the wooded strip to our
right flank. His request was acceded to by Col. Maurice and in spite of
running the gauntlet the tank advance continued without further loss.
Nos. 1 and 2 Tps. "C" Sqn and elements of the Recce Tp. moved on fast on the
right flank and succeeded in crossing the anti-tank obstacle S.W. of
Biéville. No. 4 Tp. on the left was held up at the obstacle as there was no
possible crossing in that area.
No. 1 Tp. then succeeded in working forward into LEBISEY with the leading
infantry. C.O. KSLI then decided to launch an attack on LEBISEY at 2114 hrs. [A question mark was handwritten next to the
"2114 hrs" above and a note reads, “No. It was at 1615!"]
Recce Tp. now reported enemy tanks advancing North from the
direction of CAEN.
C.O. asked for the immediate release of "A" Sqn. who arrived just in time to
take up battle positions to the West of Biéville. The enemy tanks advanced
very fast and were engaged when the reached the Western end of the A/Tk
obstacle. Two were K.O.'d and the remainder moved West into the wooded
country in the direction of LE LANDEL. Two troops "A" Sqn moved across to
our right flank and when the German tanks emerged No. 1 Tp engaged and
destroyed four. Other enemy tanks swung still more to the West and moved
fast for the high ground above Périers-SUR-LE-DAN. "B" Sqn. ordered 3 17 pdr
tanks and one Sherman III to engage and 3 more German tanks were destroyed.
No other enemy tanks then [advanced] from the woods.
Neither the 2 Warwicks or 1 Norfolks were available to assist on the attack
on LEBISEY and in view of the heavy losses sustained by the K.S.L.I. in a
hard days fighting Col. Maurice decided not to attack that night.
At last light the regiment rallied and leagured West of Biéville but in
spite of innumerable snipers in the adjacent woods we were not seriously
disturbed in the 3 1/2 hours in Leaguer.
Note. In the encounter with
enemy tanks only 2 hits were scored on our tanks and neither of them was put
out of action. The enemy K.O.'d one M.10 S.P. A/Tk gun. We destroyed seven
and K.O.'d two enemy tanks all Mk. IV Specials. Some of which were wrongly
described as Mk. VI tanks owing to the additional armour plates fitted.
Our Casualties were Lieut. D.F. Alexander and Winterhalder killed. Troopers
Rowse, Furnivall, Bradbury, Roberts, and Issott killed.
Cpl. Knight, Tprs. Bailey, Samuelson wounded.
Cpl. Ducker, Tprs. Wright, Cpl. Cowley, L/Cpl. Wyatt, Tprs. Sugden and Harkness missing.
7th. D + 1
At first light the regiment less one Sqn. was ordered back to the high
ground North of Périers-SUR-LE-DAN and took up battle positions facing South
and South West. "A" Sqn. remained in the area Biéville and throughout the
day supported attacks by 2 Warwicks and 1 Norfolks on LEBISEY. The enemy
appeared to have reinforced strongly during the previous night and all the
attacks were unsuccessful, the infantry suffering heavily losses.
The ground to the East of Biéville was unsuitable for the purpose of the
required support and it was found that there were no possible crossing
places of the natural A/Tk obstacle between the main axis and the road
185 Bde eventually decided to consolidate North of the obstacle. No. 1 Tp.
"A" Sqn. destroyed a Staff Car in the LE LANDEL area and machine-gunned a
party of 10 Germans. The only survivor surrendered. They may have been
manning two 105mm S.P. guns which were found intact and which had moved up
during the night. The remainder of the Regiment stayed in battle positions
all day although a few enemy tanks were seen near the Western extremity of
the A/Tk obstacle shortly before last light they did not advance.
We were shelled intermittently during the day but casualties were light
amounting to one killed and two wounded.
Casualties. No tank casualties.
Personnel — Trooper Gillingham killed.
Cpl. Taylor and Tpr. Webster wounded.