11th Battalion, The Durham Light Infantry War Diary March 1941

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1st March 1941 Alafoss

The last day of “dust storms”. Very heavy winds had been blowing for the last 96 hours causing huge dust storms. Two Nissen Huts had blown down.

3rd March 1941

A Company moved into SLINGSBY and Hafnafjordur Camps according to plan. (See Appendix E of the February 1941 War Diary). The storm had now abated.

4th March 1941

B Company moved into HVALEYRI Camp.

5th March 1941

The remainder of the Battalion, including the Rear Party, took over the Hafnafjordur SUB-SECTOR AREA.

6th March 1941

The Rear Party arrived to complete the relief of 147th Infantry Brigade positions in the above-mentioned area.

12th March 1941 Hafnafjordur.

A lecture was given on the Defence of the Hafnafjordur Sub-Sector by the Battalion CO – Lt Col R.F. Ware M.C.

Due to the re-organisation of the area defences and posts, priority was given to this work.

19th March 1941

A lecture on Security was given to all Officers by Major Wise M.B.E.

22nd March 1941

Captain T. Cairns, 2/Lt T.B. Walker and 2/Lt J. McNichol attended the 5th Course at the Iceland Force Tactical School – duration – 14 days.

23rd March 1941

Physical training commenced – the weather now being suitable for outdoor work.

25th March 1941

CSM Poole was appointed RSM to 11th Battalion.

26th March 1941

Representatives of the Battalion attended a demonstration by the Royal Artillery at GEITHALS.

27th March 1941

Representatives of the Battalion attended a demonstration by the Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa of Machine Guns.

28th March 1941

A Motor transport demonstration was given by the Battalion transport for the Force Tactical School – showing a move of the full number of vehicles on the scale of the New Organisation of the Infantry Battalion.

RAF personnel were billeted with the Battalion – two Officers and 62 Other Ranks.

29th March 1941

A lecture on Fire Control was given by Lt Col Richardson, Royal Artillery.

A CO’s exercise took place in the B Company area – dealing with a response to “Stand-To”.

2/Lt Sopwith returned from his Signals Course in the UK and 2/Lt J Lloyd arrived to join the Battalion.

30th March 1941

A large four-engined plane was spotted on a reconnaissance flight over Reykjavik and Hafnafjordur districts. Anti-Aircraft units failed to register a hit, and after 15 minutes the plane flew away in a South-Easterly direction. The morale of the Battalion was raised 100% after this visit, everyone enjoying it and eager for more.

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