Difference between revisions of "War Diary - G Branch - August 1941"

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(1) Reports were received from two Posts in [[Hvalfjordur]] that an aircraft had been heard at approximately 00:25 hours to fly Northwards over that area and that shortly afterwards a loud crash was heard.  All friendly aircraft were accounted for.  A patrol of [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Worcestershire_Regiment 12th Worcester Regiment] was ordered to make a ground recce in that area.
 
(1) Reports were received from two Posts in [[Hvalfjordur]] that an aircraft had been heard at approximately 00:25 hours to fly Northwards over that area and that shortly afterwards a loud crash was heard.  All friendly aircraft were accounted for.  A patrol of [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Worcestershire_Regiment 12th Worcester Regiment] was ordered to make a ground recce in that area.
  
(2) Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.) attended the final day of the Force Sports Meeting at REYKJAVIK Stadium.
+
(2) Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.) attended the final day of the Force Sports Meeting at [[Reykjavik]] Stadium.
  
 
(3) The following were issued :-
 
(3) The following were issued :-
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'''5 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''5 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) At 04:15 hours an aircraft provisionally identified as a Heinkel 111 was sighted at [[Borganes]] and from there travelled over a course to [[Akranes]], REYKJAVIK and in to [[Hvalfjordur]] where it was sighted at UTSKALAHAMAR at 04:40 hours.  From there it proceeded South East to GEITHALS and [[Kaldadarnes]] and was engaged by Anti-aircraft fire (two rounds being fired) at 04:50 hours.  No hit was registered.  It was heard at 04:35 hours at EYRABAKKI and heard from VESTMANNAEYJAR at 05:11 hours and from wireless reports it seemed then to have flown inland in the direction of Mount HEKLA returning to the sea near KIRKJUBAERKLAUSTUR where an unidentified aircraft was seen at a great height at 05:25 hours.  Hurricane fighters took off to engage it but were unable to make contact.
+
(1) At 04:15 hours an aircraft provisionally identified as a Heinkel 111 was sighted at [[Borganes]] and from there travelled over a course to [[Akranes]], [[Reykjavik]] and in to [[Hvalfjordur]] where it was sighted at UTSKALAHAMAR at 04:40 hours.  From there it proceeded South East to GEITHALS and [[Kaldadarnes]] and was engaged by Anti-aircraft fire (two rounds being fired) at 04:50 hours.  No hit was registered.  It was heard at 04:35 hours at EYRABAKKI and heard from VESTMANNAEYJAR at 05:11 hours and from wireless reports it seemed then to have flown inland in the direction of Mount HEKLA returning to the sea near KIRKJUBAERKLAUSTUR where an unidentified aircraft was seen at a great height at 05:25 hours.  Hurricane fighters took off to engage it but were unable to make contact.
  
 
(2) Force Exercise No. 8 of 1941 (a signal exercise for HQ troops) was started at 22:20 hours.
 
(2) Force Exercise No. 8 of 1941 (a signal exercise for HQ troops) was started at 22:20 hours.
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(3) Force Exercise No. 8 of 1941 was concluded at 10:40 hours.
 
(3) Force Exercise No. 8 of 1941 was concluded at 10:40 hours.
  
(4) At approximately 12:00 hours an American troop convoy of three vessels escorted by two capital ships, three destroyers and a corvette of the US Navy reached REYKJAVIK.  The following troops of the US Army were on board :-
+
(4) At approximately 12:00 hours an American troop convoy of three vessels escorted by two capital ships, three destroyers and a corvette of the US Navy reached [[Reykjavik]].  The following troops of the US Army were on board :-
  
 
Air Force HQ
 
Air Force HQ
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Quartermaster Company
 
Quartermaster Company
  
A total of 87 Officers and approximately 1100 men.  Disembarkation commenced and the troops are being accommodated in Thornhill Camp, Crownhill Camp and Camberley Camp REYKJAVIK.  Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) visited the Officer Commanding troops on their arrival.
+
A total of 87 Officers and approximately 1100 men.  Disembarkation commenced and the troops are being accommodated in Thornhill Camp, Crownhill Camp and Camberley Camp [[Reykjavik]].  Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) visited the Officer Commanding troops on their arrival.
  
 
'''7 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''7 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
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(2) Instructions were given that the Anti-aircraft defences at MELGERDI in North East Sector should be strengthened by mounting the Machine Guns on Anti-aircraft mountings.
 
(2) Instructions were given that the Anti-aircraft defences at MELGERDI in North East Sector should be strengthened by mounting the Machine Guns on Anti-aircraft mountings.
  
(3) Information was received from Officer Commanding RAF Iceland that the total personnel for station HQs at RAF Stations at REYKJAVIK and [[Kaldadarnes]] would be 73 Officers 77 senior NCOs and 973 airmen.  The Chief Engineer was requested to push forward accommodation works accordingly.
+
(3) Information was received from Officer Commanding RAF Iceland that the total personnel for station HQs at RAF Stations at [[Reykjavik]] and [[Kaldadarnes]] would be 73 Officers 77 senior NCOs and 973 airmen.  The Chief Engineer was requested to push forward accommodation works accordingly.
  
 
'''8 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''8 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
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(1) An unidentified aircraft was sighted by Anti-aircraft site at HRAPNEYRI ([[Hvalfjordur]]) in a position out to sea in the area of [[Akranes]].  A patrol of Hurricane aircraft took off to investigate but were unable to contact the aircraft and so establish its identity.
 
(1) An unidentified aircraft was sighted by Anti-aircraft site at HRAPNEYRI ([[Hvalfjordur]]) in a position out to sea in the area of [[Akranes]].  A patrol of Hurricane aircraft took off to investigate but were unable to contact the aircraft and so establish its identity.
  
(2) One Section Heavy Anti-aircraft guns installed on ENGEY ISLAND off REYKJAVIK.  The Section is not yet fully in action there as all equipment is not yet complete.
+
(2) One Section Heavy Anti-aircraft guns installed on ENGEY ISLAND off [[Reykjavik]].  The Section is not yet fully in action there as all equipment is not yet complete.
  
 
(3) Force Training Instruction No. 8 was issued.  Copy filed as Appendix No. 7.
 
(3) Force Training Instruction No. 8 was issued.  Copy filed as Appendix No. 7.
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'''9 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''9 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) Eleven flying boats of the US Navy (3 [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consolidated_PBY_Catalina P.B.Ys’] of No. 73 Squadron and 6 P.B.Ms’ of No. 74 Squadron) arrived at SKERJAFJORDUR, REYKJAVIK.
+
(1) Eleven flying boats of the US Navy (3 [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consolidated_PBY_Catalina P.B.Ys’] of No. 73 Squadron and 6 P.B.Ms’ of No. 74 Squadron) arrived at SKERJAFJORDUR, [[Reykjavik]].
  
 
(2) Information having been received that the Icelandic periodical “THODOLFUR” had published on 5th August 1941 an article referring specifically to the positions of two Battery positions a communication was sent to H B M Minister pointing out that no direct censorship of the Icelandic Press had been imposed but that there had been a clear understanding that military information would not be published and requesting that representation be made to the Icelandic Government that the Press must be prevented from publishing such information otherwise the G.O.C. would feel free to take such steps as he considered necessary for the security of the British forces.
 
(2) Information having been received that the Icelandic periodical “THODOLFUR” had published on 5th August 1941 an article referring specifically to the positions of two Battery positions a communication was sent to H B M Minister pointing out that no direct censorship of the Icelandic Press had been imposed but that there had been a clear understanding that military information would not be published and requesting that representation be made to the Icelandic Government that the Press must be prevented from publishing such information otherwise the G.O.C. would feel free to take such steps as he considered necessary for the security of the British forces.
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'''11 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''11 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) 77 Light Anti-aircraft Battery Royal Artillery reached REYKJAVIK and will be located in Caledonia Camp pending a readjustment of Light Anti-aircraft defences.
+
(1) 77 Light Anti-aircraft Battery Royal Artillery reached [[Reykjavik]] and will be located in Caledonia Camp pending a readjustment of Light Anti-aircraft defences.
  
 
(2) Captain Spencer (G.S.O. 3 Training) returned from leave in the UK.
 
(2) Captain Spencer (G.S.O. 3 Training) returned from leave in the UK.
  
(3) The [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Havilland_Albatross “ALBATROSS” aircraft] on courier duty crashed on landing at REYKJAVIK aerodrome this evening and badly damaged one wing.  There were no personal injuries.  Brigadier GREGG on a visit from the War Office was on board.
+
(3) The [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_Havilland_Albatross “ALBATROSS” aircraft] on courier duty crashed on landing at [[Reykjavik]] aerodrome this evening and badly damaged one wing.  There were no personal injuries.  Brigadier GREGG on a visit from the War Office was on board.
  
 
(4) The following were issued :-
 
(4) The following were issued :-
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'''16 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''16 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) The Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill M.P., and party visited ICELAND.  The party consisted of Mr Winston Churchill M.P., Prime Minister, Admiral of the Fleet, [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dudley_Pound Sir Dudley Pound] G.C.B., G.C.V.O. (The First Sea Lord), [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Dill General Sir John Dill] K.C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O. (Chief of the Imperial General Staff) and [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilfrid_Freeman Air Chief Marshal Sir Wilfrid Freeman] K.C.B., D.S.O., M.C. (Vice Chief of the Air Staff) and was accompanied by [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Cadogan Sir Alexander Cadogan], [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Lindemann,_1st_Viscount_Cherwell Lord Cherwell], [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franklin_Delano_Roosevelt,_Jr. Lieut F D Roosevelt Jr] (US Naval Reserve acting Liaison Officer)and other staff Officers.  They landed at REYKJAVIK harbour at 10:30 hours from a destroyer and inspected a Guard of Honour provided from all three services.  The Prime Minister then called on the Prime Minister of ICELAND at the ALTHING HAUS in REYKJAVIK and made a short speech from the balcony, while the First Sea Lord, C.I.G.S. and V.C.A.S. inspected the Combined Operations Room.  From 11:30 hours to 13:15 hours the whole party inspected troops drawn up on the concrete road REYKJAVIK, the detachments inspected including the US Marines and R.A.A.F. contingents.  This was followed by a march past the Saluting Base, the troops reviewed being led by Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.), Rear Admiral Scott (A.O.I.C.) and Group Captain Primrose (Officer Commanding RAF Iceland).  The Prime Minister, the G.O.C. and Lt Col Heard G.S.O.1 were included in a luncheon party given by the British Minister and after lunch the Prime Minister made a short motor run to [[Alafoss]] and the RAF camp at [[Helgafell]], while General Sir John Dill inspected Force HQ.  At 16:30 hours Officers of Force HQ were presented to General Sir John Dill and later to the Prime Minister and the party were entertained for tea.  At 17:30 hours the party left and re-embarked at REYKJAVIK for [[Hvalfjordur]] to rejoin H M S PRINCE OF WALES which sailed later in the evening for the UK.  Considerable interest in the visit was shown by the local population.  The Prime Minister’s speech was well received and a large crowd cheered the party on its departure.
+
(1) The Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill M.P., and party visited ICELAND.  The party consisted of Mr Winston Churchill M.P., Prime Minister, Admiral of the Fleet, [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dudley_Pound Sir Dudley Pound] G.C.B., G.C.V.O. (The First Sea Lord), [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Dill General Sir John Dill] K.C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O. (Chief of the Imperial General Staff) and [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilfrid_Freeman Air Chief Marshal Sir Wilfrid Freeman] K.C.B., D.S.O., M.C. (Vice Chief of the Air Staff) and was accompanied by [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Cadogan Sir Alexander Cadogan], [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Lindemann,_1st_Viscount_Cherwell Lord Cherwell], [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franklin_Delano_Roosevelt,_Jr. Lieut F D Roosevelt Jr] (US Naval Reserve acting Liaison Officer)and other staff Officers.  They landed at [[Reykjavik]] harbour at 10:30 hours from a destroyer and inspected a Guard of Honour provided from all three services.  The Prime Minister then called on the Prime Minister of ICELAND at the ALTHING HAUS in [[Reykjavik]] and made a short speech from the balcony, while the First Sea Lord, C.I.G.S. and V.C.A.S. inspected the Combined Operations Room.  From 11:30 hours to 13:15 hours the whole party inspected troops drawn up on the concrete road [[Reykjavik]], the detachments inspected including the US Marines and R.A.A.F. contingents.  This was followed by a march past the Saluting Base, the troops reviewed being led by Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.), Rear Admiral Scott (A.O.I.C.) and Group Captain Primrose (Officer Commanding RAF Iceland).  The Prime Minister, the G.O.C. and Lt Col Heard G.S.O.1 were included in a luncheon party given by the British Minister and after lunch the Prime Minister made a short motor run to [[Alafoss]] and the RAF camp at [[Helgafell]], while General Sir John Dill inspected Force HQ.  At 16:30 hours Officers of Force HQ were presented to General Sir John Dill and later to the Prime Minister and the party were entertained for tea.  At 17:30 hours the party left and re-embarked at [[Reykjavik]] for [[Hvalfjordur]] to rejoin H M S PRINCE OF WALES which sailed later in the evening for the UK.  Considerable interest in the visit was shown by the local population.  The Prime Minister’s speech was well received and a large crowd cheered the party on its departure.
  
 
(2) Major Whitehead (G.S.O.2 Training) returned from his visit to the North East and North West Sectors.
 
(2) Major Whitehead (G.S.O.2 Training) returned from his visit to the North East and North West Sectors.
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'''20 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''20 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) At 06:53 hours a hostile aircraft identified as a Heinkel 111 was observed in the [[Hvalfjordur]] area flying Southwards towards REYKJAVIK which it reached at about 07:05.  It was engaged by Heavy Anti-aircraft gun site at GROTTA (site 2) who fired two rounds and by Light Anti-aircraft guns site at CORBETT CAMP, FOSSVOGUR (site E) which fired seven rounds.  The cloud base was low (about 2000 feet) and the aircraft was flying low descending from just below the cloud at REYKJAVIK to about 500 feet and then climbing into the cloud at once on being engaged.  Hurricane aircraft took off but contact with the aircraft was lost in the cloud over KEFLAVIK.  Air raid message YELLOW was given at 07:06 hours, air raid warning RED at 07:12 hours and air raid message WHITE at 07:55 hours.  It was suggested to Officer Commanding RAF Iceland that in view of the increasing frequency of visits by single recon aircraft it might be preferable only to issue the air raid warning RED when an actual attack appeared likely.
+
(1) At 06:53 hours a hostile aircraft identified as a Heinkel 111 was observed in the [[Hvalfjordur]] area flying Southwards towards [[Reykjavik]] which it reached at about 07:05.  It was engaged by Heavy Anti-aircraft gun site at GROTTA (site 2) who fired two rounds and by Light Anti-aircraft guns site at CORBETT CAMP, FOSSVOGUR (site E) which fired seven rounds.  The cloud base was low (about 2000 feet) and the aircraft was flying low descending from just below the cloud at [[Reykjavik]] to about 500 feet and then climbing into the cloud at once on being engaged.  Hurricane aircraft took off but contact with the aircraft was lost in the cloud over KEFLAVIK.  Air raid message YELLOW was given at 07:06 hours, air raid warning RED at 07:12 hours and air raid message WHITE at 07:55 hours.  It was suggested to Officer Commanding RAF Iceland that in view of the increasing frequency of visits by single recon aircraft it might be preferable only to issue the air raid warning RED when an actual attack appeared likely.
  
 
(2) The boundaries of the prohibited area in [[Hvalfjordur]] were finally agreed with the ICELANDIC Government and arrangements made for the area to be marked off and security measures within it put in hand.
 
(2) The boundaries of the prohibited area in [[Hvalfjordur]] were finally agreed with the ICELANDIC Government and arrangements made for the area to be marked off and security measures within it put in hand.
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'''21 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''21 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) The Coastal Defence guns from GUFUNES were installed on ENGEY ISLAND, REYKJAVIK.  The full complement of 397 Coast Battery could not, however, be accommodated on the island owing to absence of complete water supply.
+
(1) The Coastal Defence guns from GUFUNES were installed on ENGEY ISLAND, [[Reykjavik]].  The full complement of 397 Coast Battery could not, however, be accommodated on the island owing to absence of complete water supply.
  
 
(2) 1/ 7 D W R moved from tented camp at LAEKJARBOTN to newly erected hutted camp at GEITHALS.
 
(2) 1/ 7 D W R moved from tented camp at LAEKJARBOTN to newly erected hutted camp at GEITHALS.
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'''26 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
 
'''26 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.'''
  
(1) An inter-service conference was held by Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) at which the A.C.I.C, Officer Commanding RAF Iceland, Commanding General 1 US Marine Brigade, Major General Fitzherbert (Inspector Royal Army Service Corps), Brigadier Greig (Inspector for Transportation War Office) and heads of branches of services attended at which various points on supply and transport in ICELAND were considered, including proposals for a trail blackout and reduced street lighting in REYKJAVIK.
+
(1) An inter-service conference was held by Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) at which the A.C.I.C, Officer Commanding RAF Iceland, Commanding General 1 US Marine Brigade, Major General Fitzherbert (Inspector Royal Army Service Corps), Brigadier Greig (Inspector for Transportation War Office) and heads of branches of services attended at which various points on supply and transport in ICELAND were considered, including proposals for a trail blackout and reduced street lighting in [[Reykjavik]].
  
 
(2) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) held a conference for Brigade Commanders, Battalion Commanders, Commander, Royal Artillery and others on the winter training and educational policy for the force.  Minutes of the meeting will be issued later.  
 
(2) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) held a conference for Brigade Commanders, Battalion Commanders, Commander, Royal Artillery and others on the winter training and educational policy for the force.  Minutes of the meeting will be issued later.  

Latest revision as of 15:16, 4 May 2018

1 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Instructions were issued for the establishment of a short course in bomb recognition to be run by Commander, Royal Engineers (Ops).

(2) Instructions were issued as to the siting of Bofors Light Anti-aircraft guns in ICELAND on their arrival. The sites and priorities are as flows :-

a. REYDARFJORDUR 2

b. SEYDISFJORDUR 2

c. Kaldadarnes 2

d. KORSNES and REYKJAVIK aerodrome 2

e. AKUREYRI 4

f. REYKJAVIK aerodrome 2

g. REYKJAVIK aerodrome 2

h. ARTUN area 2

i. Hvalfjordur 2


2 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Instructions were given approving the scheme for demolition of bridges at HVITA (353580 map sheet 26 1/100000) and at Blonduos (056740 map sheet 43 1/100000) Orders for the destruction of these bridges are only to be given by Force HQ through Commander North West Sector.

(2) Instructions were issued as to the unit to occupy the hutted camps now in course of erection in the Western Sector.

(3) Operation Instruction No. 56 on the command of troops in the Hvalfjordur area was issued. Copy filed as Appendix No. 1.

3 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Reports were received from two Posts in Hvalfjordur that an aircraft had been heard at approximately 00:25 hours to fly Northwards over that area and that shortly afterwards a loud crash was heard. All friendly aircraft were accounted for. A patrol of 12th Worcester Regiment was ordered to make a ground recce in that area.

(2) Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.) attended the final day of the Force Sports Meeting at Reykjavik Stadium.

(3) The following were issued :-

a. Amendment No. 2 to Force Location Statement No. 14. Copy filed as Appendix No. 2.

b. Force Intelligence Summary No. 67. Copy filed as Appendix No. 3.

4 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) held an inter-service conference on various matters connected with British and US troops. It was attended by Brigadier-General Marston, Commanding General 1st US Marine Brigade, Group Captain Primrose, Officer Commanding RAF ICELAND and Major Whitcombe representing the US Army. The principal points decided are as follows :-

a. Additional means of transport to ENGEY ISLAND will be provided.

b. Supply questions were discussed.

c. The Force Operation Instruction on recognition of aircraft will be revised.

d. The Combined Operations Room was further discussed.

(2) Approval was given for the appointment of a full-time duty Officer at REYDARFJORDUR Control Room.

(3) The following were issued :-

a. G.O.C’s message on Duty Officers. Copy filed as Appendix No. 4.

b. Note on the publication of the Army bulletin “War”. Copy filed as Appendix No. 5.


5 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) At 04:15 hours an aircraft provisionally identified as a Heinkel 111 was sighted at Borganes and from there travelled over a course to Akranes, Reykjavik and in to Hvalfjordur where it was sighted at UTSKALAHAMAR at 04:40 hours. From there it proceeded South East to GEITHALS and Kaldadarnes and was engaged by Anti-aircraft fire (two rounds being fired) at 04:50 hours. No hit was registered. It was heard at 04:35 hours at EYRABAKKI and heard from VESTMANNAEYJAR at 05:11 hours and from wireless reports it seemed then to have flown inland in the direction of Mount HEKLA returning to the sea near KIRKJUBAERKLAUSTUR where an unidentified aircraft was seen at a great height at 05:25 hours. Hurricane fighters took off to engage it but were unable to make contact.

(2) Force Exercise No. 8 of 1941 (a signal exercise for HQ troops) was started at 22:20 hours.

(3) In view of the very late delivery of official mails from the UK for the months of May and June details were sent to the War Office for investigation.

(4) Letter by G.O.C. on the question of security was issued. Copy filed as Appendix No. 6.

6 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Twenty eight “Tomahawk” pursuit aircraft of the US Army landed at REYKJAVIK aerodrome.

(2) The Platoon of 1/6 Duke of Wellington’s Regiment at ODDI landing ground was relieved by a Platoon from the Company at Selfoss and the Platoon returned to the Company of 1/6 DWR at Kaldadarnes.

(3) Force Exercise No. 8 of 1941 was concluded at 10:40 hours.

(4) At approximately 12:00 hours an American troop convoy of three vessels escorted by two capital ships, three destroyers and a corvette of the US Navy reached Reykjavik. The following troops of the US Army were on board :-

Air Force HQ

1 Air Base Squadron

33 Pursuit Squadron

1 Battalion 21 Engineers (Aviation).

Aircraft Warning Company

Quartermaster Company

A total of 87 Officers and approximately 1100 men. Disembarkation commenced and the troops are being accommodated in Thornhill Camp, Crownhill Camp and Camberley Camp Reykjavik. Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) visited the Officer Commanding troops on their arrival.

7 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The patrol sent out on 3rd August to locate the aircraft presumed to have crashed North of Hvalfjordur on that day returned without having discovered any trace.

(2) Instructions were given that the Anti-aircraft defences at MELGERDI in North East Sector should be strengthened by mounting the Machine Guns on Anti-aircraft mountings.

(3) Information was received from Officer Commanding RAF Iceland that the total personnel for station HQs at RAF Stations at Reykjavik and Kaldadarnes would be 73 Officers 77 senior NCOs and 973 airmen. The Chief Engineer was requested to push forward accommodation works accordingly.

8 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) An unidentified aircraft was sighted by Anti-aircraft site at HRAPNEYRI (Hvalfjordur) in a position out to sea in the area of Akranes. A patrol of Hurricane aircraft took off to investigate but were unable to contact the aircraft and so establish its identity.

(2) One Section Heavy Anti-aircraft guns installed on ENGEY ISLAND off Reykjavik. The Section is not yet fully in action there as all equipment is not yet complete.

(3) Force Training Instruction No. 8 was issued. Copy filed as Appendix No. 7.

9 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Eleven flying boats of the US Navy (3 P.B.Ys’ of No. 73 Squadron and 6 P.B.Ms’ of No. 74 Squadron) arrived at SKERJAFJORDUR, Reykjavik.

(2) Information having been received that the Icelandic periodical “THODOLFUR” had published on 5th August 1941 an article referring specifically to the positions of two Battery positions a communication was sent to H B M Minister pointing out that no direct censorship of the Icelandic Press had been imposed but that there had been a clear understanding that military information would not be published and requesting that representation be made to the Icelandic Government that the Press must be prevented from publishing such information otherwise the G.O.C. would feel free to take such steps as he considered necessary for the security of the British forces.

(3) Force Operation Instruction No. 42 (Revised) on the defence of KEFLAVIK (UTSKALAR) Emergency Landing Ground. Copy filed as Appendix No. 8.

10 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) A report was received of a serious fire in an occupied house and adjacent Nissen Huts occupied by two Platoons 1/9 Manchesters (Machine Gun) at REYDARFJORDUR. The following weapons and ammunition were lost :-

5 Medium Machine Guns

17,000 rounds Mk VIII Small Arms Ammunition.

Two Anti-Tank Rifles

51 Rifles.

And 8 Pistols (revolver).

Personal injuries were sustained by 11 men, in two cases the injuries being serious but there were no fatal injuries.

(2) Captain Moody (G.S.O. 3 (Cam)) left for Reykerskoli on a visit to North West Sector.

(3) A conference was held attended by Major Packard (G.S.O. 2) and representatives of Commander, Royal Artillery and representatives of Officer Commanding RAF Iceland on identification of aircraft. A revised form of manoeuvres of friendly aircraft in the North East Sector was agreed and other points discussed which will be included in a revision of Force Operation Instruction No.14.

(4) The following were issued :-

a. Force Intelligence Summary No. 68. Copy filed as Appendix No. 9.

b. Instructions for course for Motor Contact Officers. Copy filed as Appendix No. 10.

11 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) 77 Light Anti-aircraft Battery Royal Artillery reached Reykjavik and will be located in Caledonia Camp pending a readjustment of Light Anti-aircraft defences.

(2) Captain Spencer (G.S.O. 3 Training) returned from leave in the UK.

(3) The “ALBATROSS” aircraft on courier duty crashed on landing at Reykjavik aerodrome this evening and badly damaged one wing. There were no personal injuries. Brigadier GREGG on a visit from the War Office was on board.

(4) The following were issued :-

a. Force Training Instruction No.9. Copy filed as Appendix No. 11.

b. Force Training Instruction No. 10. Copy filed as Appendix No. 12.

c. Amendment No. 3 to Force Location Statement No. 14. Copy filed as Appendix No. 13.

d. Amendment No. 1 to Force Operation Instruction No. 47. Filed as Appendix No. 14.

12 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) held a service conference attended by heads of services and of movement of this Force, Royal Navy and US Marines and Army on various points affecting joint administration and supply.

(2) Captain Moody (G.S.O. 3 (Cam)) returned from Reykerskoli.

(3) Major Whitehead (G.S.O. 2 (Training)) left for North West and North East Sectors.


13 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The following were issued :-

a. Force Operation Instruction No. 13 (Revised). Filed as Appendix No. 15.

b. Force Training Instruction No.11. Filed as Appendix No. 16.

c. Force Code Name List No.21. Filed as Appendix No. 17.

14 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The following were issued :-

a. Notes on the manufacture of snipers’ clothes. Copy filed as Appendix No. 18.

b. Programme for Motor Contact Officers’ Course. Copy filed as Appendix No. 19.

15 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) held a conference attended by Rear Admiral Scott (A.C.I.C.), Group Captain Primrose (Officer Commanding RAF Iceland) and Brigadier General Marston (Commanding General 1st US Marine Brigade) and chiefs of their respective operational staffs to consider arrangements for the pending visit of the Prime Minister and party to ICELAND.

(2) Two Sections of 18 Heavy Anti-aircraft Battery reached AKUREYRI.

16 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill M.P., and party visited ICELAND. The party consisted of Mr Winston Churchill M.P., Prime Minister, Admiral of the Fleet, Sir Dudley Pound G.C.B., G.C.V.O. (The First Sea Lord), General Sir John Dill K.C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O. (Chief of the Imperial General Staff) and Air Chief Marshal Sir Wilfrid Freeman K.C.B., D.S.O., M.C. (Vice Chief of the Air Staff) and was accompanied by Sir Alexander Cadogan, Lord Cherwell, Lieut F D Roosevelt Jr (US Naval Reserve acting Liaison Officer)and other staff Officers. They landed at Reykjavik harbour at 10:30 hours from a destroyer and inspected a Guard of Honour provided from all three services. The Prime Minister then called on the Prime Minister of ICELAND at the ALTHING HAUS in Reykjavik and made a short speech from the balcony, while the First Sea Lord, C.I.G.S. and V.C.A.S. inspected the Combined Operations Room. From 11:30 hours to 13:15 hours the whole party inspected troops drawn up on the concrete road Reykjavik, the detachments inspected including the US Marines and R.A.A.F. contingents. This was followed by a march past the Saluting Base, the troops reviewed being led by Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.), Rear Admiral Scott (A.O.I.C.) and Group Captain Primrose (Officer Commanding RAF Iceland). The Prime Minister, the G.O.C. and Lt Col Heard G.S.O.1 were included in a luncheon party given by the British Minister and after lunch the Prime Minister made a short motor run to Alafoss and the RAF camp at Helgafell, while General Sir John Dill inspected Force HQ. At 16:30 hours Officers of Force HQ were presented to General Sir John Dill and later to the Prime Minister and the party were entertained for tea. At 17:30 hours the party left and re-embarked at Reykjavik for Hvalfjordur to rejoin H M S PRINCE OF WALES which sailed later in the evening for the UK. Considerable interest in the visit was shown by the local population. The Prime Minister’s speech was well received and a large crowd cheered the party on its departure.

(2) Major Whitehead (G.S.O.2 Training) returned from his visit to the North East and North West Sectors.

17 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Owing to continuous rain and flooding one Company, Mortar Platoon and one Section of Carrier Platoon 1 /4 KOYLI returned from EGILSSTADIR leaving only a detachment at EGILSSTADIR.

(2) Force Intelligence Summary No. 69 was issued. Copy filed as Appendix No.20.

18 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major-General Curtis (G.O.C.) held further conferences with Brigadier General Marston (1 US Marine Brigade) on various questions arising out of accommodation for fresh troops.

(2) The G.I. set (Mark II) at BRIGHTON CAMP, BREIDABOLSSTADIR was brought into action.

(3) The following were issued :-

a. Force Operation Instruction Mo. 14 revised. Copy filed as Appendix No. 21.

b. Amendment No. 1 to Force Operation Instruction No. 13 (Revised). Copy filed as Appendix No. 22.

19 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) 1/ 5 West Yorkshires carried out a two-day mountain warfare exercise from Brautarholt eastwards over the ESJA range of mountains. Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) was present at the exercise in the morning and visited various of the mountain picquets. The exercise is intended to accustom the troops to the physical effort required in mountain warfare.

20 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) At 06:53 hours a hostile aircraft identified as a Heinkel 111 was observed in the Hvalfjordur area flying Southwards towards Reykjavik which it reached at about 07:05. It was engaged by Heavy Anti-aircraft gun site at GROTTA (site 2) who fired two rounds and by Light Anti-aircraft guns site at CORBETT CAMP, FOSSVOGUR (site E) which fired seven rounds. The cloud base was low (about 2000 feet) and the aircraft was flying low descending from just below the cloud at Reykjavik to about 500 feet and then climbing into the cloud at once on being engaged. Hurricane aircraft took off but contact with the aircraft was lost in the cloud over KEFLAVIK. Air raid message YELLOW was given at 07:06 hours, air raid warning RED at 07:12 hours and air raid message WHITE at 07:55 hours. It was suggested to Officer Commanding RAF Iceland that in view of the increasing frequency of visits by single recon aircraft it might be preferable only to issue the air raid warning RED when an actual attack appeared likely.

(2) The boundaries of the prohibited area in Hvalfjordur were finally agreed with the ICELANDIC Government and arrangements made for the area to be marked off and security measures within it put in hand.

(3) Amendment No. 1 to Force Operation Instruction No. 8 was issued. Copy filed as Appendix No. 23.

(4) An inter-Battalion exchange between 1/ 6 Duke of Wellington’s Regiment and 1/ 7 Duke of Wellington’s Regiment of 147 Brigade took place today, the locations of the Battalions is now as follows :-

1/ 7 D W R less detachments – LAEKJARBOTN

One Company less one Platoon and detachment 1/ 7 D W R – Selfoss

One Platoon 1/ 7 D W R – ODDI

Detachment 1/ 7 D W R – ALVIDRA

One Company, one Section Carriers and one Platoon static Machine Guns 1/ 7 D W R – KALDADARNES

1/ 6 D W R less detachments – GEITHALS

Detachment 1/ 6 D W R – THINGVELLIR (Coast Watching Post Q 12).

21 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The Coastal Defence guns from GUFUNES were installed on ENGEY ISLAND, Reykjavik. The full complement of 397 Coast Battery could not, however, be accommodated on the island owing to absence of complete water supply.

(2) 1/ 7 D W R moved from tented camp at LAEKJARBOTN to newly erected hutted camp at GEITHALS.

(3) Force two-day course for motor contact Officers started. Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) attended the afternoon session.

(4) A communication was addressed to H B M Minister in reply to a letter from him with a letter from the Editorial Board of the suppressed Communist paper “THJODVILJINN”, in which it was made clear that the G.O.C. would not agree to the reappearance of this paper.

22 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The following were issued :-

a. Iceland Force Order of Battle. Copy filed as Appendix No. 24.

b. Iceland Force Chemical Warfare Summary No. 1. Copy filed as Appendix No. 25.

23 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The G.I. Set (Mark II) was brought into force at TREGANTLE CAMP GUN SITE, KALDADARNES.

(2) The following were issued :-

a. Force Operation Instruction No. 56 on Royal Engineer moves within the island. Copy filed as Appendix No. 26.

b. Amendment No. 3 to Force Operation Instruction No.12. Copy filed as Appendix No. 27.

c. Addition to list of available ranges. Copy filed as Appendix No. 28.

24 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) The following were issued :-

a. Additions to list of Camp names. Copy filed as Appendix No. 29.

b. Force Intelligence Summary No. 70. Copy filed as Appendix No. 30.

25 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) A small Norwegian steam smack “S.S. HORNFJELL” reached SEYDISFJORDUR today with a crew of four from SVOLVAER in the LOFOTEN ISLANDS, NORWAY. There were four passengers on board. The passengers expressed a desire to join the Norwegian free forces while the men were willing to return to fetch others from Norway. The ship was placed under guard and instructions as to the disposal of the crew and passengers will be given by A.C.I.C.

(2) Major Whitehead (G.S.O.2 (Training)) left for leave in the UK.

(3) One Company 1/ 4 KOYLI returned to EGILSSTADIR from REYDARFJORDUR.

(4) The following were issued :-

a. Amendment to Force Intelligence Summary No. 70. Copy filed as Appendix No. 31.

b. Amendment No. 11 to Force Operation Instruction No. 17. Copy filed as Appendix No. 32.

26 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) An inter-service conference was held by Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) at which the A.C.I.C, Officer Commanding RAF Iceland, Commanding General 1 US Marine Brigade, Major General Fitzherbert (Inspector Royal Army Service Corps), Brigadier Greig (Inspector for Transportation War Office) and heads of branches of services attended at which various points on supply and transport in ICELAND were considered, including proposals for a trail blackout and reduced street lighting in Reykjavik.

(2) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) held a conference for Brigade Commanders, Battalion Commanders, Commander, Royal Artillery and others on the winter training and educational policy for the force. Minutes of the meeting will be issued later.

(3) Force Training Instruction No. 12 was issued. Copy filed as Appendix No. 33.

27 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) and Captain Grenfell (A.D.C.) left for a visit to the North West and North East Sectors and reached Blonduos.

(2) Lt Col Heard (G.S.O.1) inspected No. 1 Fire Brigade and attended a demonstration.

(3) The following were issued :-

a. Force Operation Instruction No. 57 on the destruction of documents in an emergency. Copy filed as Appendix No. 34.

b. Force Training Instruction No. 13. Copy filed as Appendix No. 35.

c. Preliminary Instructions for Force Exercise No. 9 of 1941. Copy filed as Appendix No. 36.

28 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) reached AKUREYRI.

(2) US flying boat containing Colonel MURRAY and Major FERGUSSON of 1st US Marine Brigade was damaged on landing at REYDARFJORDUR. There were no personal injuries.

(3) The following were issued :-

a. Force Chemical Warfare Summary No. 2. Copy filed as Appendix No. 37.

b. Amendment to Force Training Instruction No.13. Copy filed as Appendix No. 38.

29 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

NIL.

30 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) H B M Minister was requested to advice the Icelandic Government that the air raid warning “RED” would not be issued if a single or a pair of hostile aircraft were sighted unless it became clear that those planes intended or did carry out offensive action.

(2) Details of the RAF demands for signal equipment were forwarded to the War Office for co-ordination with the Air Ministry.

(3) Sub Section of the 77 Light Anti-aircraft Battery came into action at REYDARFJORDUR on temporary sites.

(4) The following were issued :-

a. Force Operation Instruction No. 58 on the relief of the 12th Battalion, Worcester Regiment by 1/ 5 West Yorkshire Regiment. Copy filed as Appendix No. 39.

b. Instructions for additional Educational Courses. Copy filed as Appendix No. 40.

31 August 1941 – Artun, Iceland.

(1) Major General Curtis (G.O.C.) left AKUREYRI for HUSAVIK.

(2) Consent was given for the visit of a party of Press representatives from the UK subject to full censorship of all material within the island.

(3) The following were issued :-

a. Force Intelligence Summary No. 71. Copy filed as Appendix No. 41.

b. Additional notes on the relief of 12th Battalion, Worcester Regiment by 1/ 5 West yorks. Copy filed as Appendix No. 42.

Appendices attached to the August 1941 War Diary of Iceland Force G Branch.

The appendices listed above – totalling some 42 documents were either missing from the War Diary file at The National Archives, or were not photographed due to the bulk of the material.

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