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Rifle Brigade in North Africa

Discussions on WW2 in Africa & the Mediterranean.
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Rifle Brigade in North Africa

Postby antoniop on 16 May 2010 08:02

I would like to know the names of the OC of the Rifle Brigade Battalions in North Africa. I have the following

1st Batt: F Stephens 1942?
V Paley 1943

2nd Batt: JML Renton 1940
ASG Douglas 1941
Viscount Garmoyle 1942
V Buller Turner 1942
TCH Pearson?
DL Darling?

7th Batt: G Hunt?
9th Batt: DJ Purdon 1941-42
10th Batt: A Gore 1943
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Re: Rifle Brigade in North Africa

Postby duncanlongstaff@btinternet.com on 26 May 2010 18:07

Lt Colonel Hunt seconded from the Kings Royal Rifle Corps was the officer commanding the 7th Rifle Brigade up to the end of the battle of Alamein (Incidently he led the British Everest expedition in the early fifties) after the Battle of Alamein Lt Col Douglas Darling took over the command of the 7th Rifle Brigade the position he held until the end of WW2 having fought through the remainder of North Africa and the whole of Italy and up into Austria-Klagenfurt.

Before Alamein I believe that Lt Colonel Darling was in the 2nd Battalion Rifle Brigade.

My father was John Longstaff a Sergeant in the 7th Rifle Brigade who served under both Hunt and Darling throughout WW2 except for short times spent in Greece, Yugoslavia and Albania with the Partisans, he was a veteran of the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War and met up with some of his old comrades from Spain in these countries.
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Re: Rifle Brigade in North Africa

Postby Alanmccoubrey on 26 May 2010 19:47

This may sound silly but in the British Army a Lt Col is the Commanding Officer of the battalion. The Officer Commanding is the Major commanding a Company. Not a lot of diofference in the language I know but it does mean a lot in the Army and perhaps in results when you are doing search for this sort of thing.
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Re: Rifle Brigade in North Africa

Postby Donald Gower on 27 Jan 2013 16:04

Reference made by Duncan Longstaff regarding his father John Longstaff.

The information is incorrect as I was and still am, a member of the Rifle Brigade, (veteran 6968877) since 1939.

To set the record straight Geoffrey Hunt was IC The Battalion at Alamein and not John Hunt of Everest fame as alleged by Sergeant Longstaff, who served with the international Brigade and subsequently joined 7RB in the desert. When the regiment reached Timini, Douglas L Darling took over the Battalion.

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Re: Rifle Brigade in North Africa

Postby ClintHardware on 26 Mar 2013 00:26

I am writing about the 1st Tower Hamlets Rifles at the moment. They were the 9th Rifle Brigade. Amongst their adventures after the all day battle at Mersa Brega was the rearguard they provided to the 1st KRRC at Derna on the 7th April. They managed to get out that day and stay with 1st KRRC and be reinforced from the rest of the battalion that had entered Tobruk. They fought on with the 2nd Support Group taken over by Brigadier W.H.E. Gott which included the 1st KRRC and 4th RHA with the 11th Hussars providing a lot of dash and recce and got back to the Wire where they continued fighting within the various columns formed.

The last rearguard at Derna was provided by accident the B Echelon of 5th RTR who having climbed up the escarpment late in the day came under fire from Gruppe Ponath and dismounted to return fire for a couple of hours before getting out in the dark.

Not realising that 1st KRRC had reinforced the 1st THR the Germans must have been scratching their heads about the men from Mersa Brega not only being more mobile than they (they were never outflanked) but also getting stronger instead of weaker.
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