Interesting Read

I've recently been trying to find out a bit more of my grandads wartime past. Sadly he died before I was born and the only information I can glean is from my old man, who would say his dad was with the 8th Army in North Africa and Italy, and mention the odd detail like Monte Cassino. Recently however, my dad found my grandads Comrades Club card which lo and behold had his unit and individual number on it. Turns out he was in the 46th Reconnaissance Regiment.

Off I went online to find out more and while there is some limited info out there about them, I found this Osprey title to be the only modern account of what these recce formations got upto. I don't usually plug stuff up here in the loft, other than the odd new miniature, but this book has shone some light on what the Reconnaissance regiments got upto. The battalion sized units were created specifically after the retreat from France to fill a gap in the Armys scouting ability at divisional level, and would tear around in scout and armoured cars like the light cavalry of old. Grandad was in North Africa and, from Tunisia, landed at Salerno with 46th Division and fought on up Italy. Its all made me a little prouder of what my grandad and chaps like him did back then, and that's a nice feeling.

I'm off on holiday for a week tomorrow, and hope to paint some miniatures when I return - as my little baby will be staying on hols for another week while I come home and back to work. It means nights will be free for a little brushwork.


airhead said…
Intresting stuff about your grandad, always thought I had a good general knowledge of ww2, but must admit I've never heard of his unite. Have a good break.

All the best

James said…
Yes that is interesting. My brother has recently been researching our dads (and mums) wartime service and has got a lot of information. He even found out that our dad got busted down from sergeant from being found drunk in a fountain after a night out!

Those recce regts were only a wartime thing I believe, the corps was disbanded afterwards, so there may not be any regimental office you can get records from. But I might be able to find out and tell you where to look?
Dinium said…
Thanks for the replies guys. I have now seen the wartime pics of my grandad and they confirm he was with 46 Midland Division (10 Corps, 8th Army) from Tunisia all the way until the 46th Recce Regiment were pulled off the line after the Salerno campaign for policing duties in Greece. I've got a fairly detailed account of their activities now, right down to which beach the regiment landed on at Salerno!

On me hols last week I managed fit in some military history - taking Isla, K and grandparents to RAF Coningsby to see the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight in their hangar. If you ever get that way I highly recommend seeing them, great to see the lanc and fighters up close.