143rd Field Regiment, Royal Artillery. War Diary May 1941

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1 May 1941 Alafoss, Iceland.

Nothing of importance. Dull day but warm.

2 May 1941

08:00 hours. Adjutant left to visit 388 Battery at Borganes. Major Weston and Captain Smithers returned to Borganes.

09:00 hours. Colonel and Signals Officer on wireless exercise linking “C” Troop, “E” Troop, “B” Troop, “A” Troop, RHQ and CRA. Results good. Weather fine and warm but dull.

3 May 1941

Dull and Warm. C.O. on conference about 70 Brigade Exercise taking place next week.

4 May 1941

Fine but dull. Nothing of importance. 50th General Hospital notified us that Bombardier Mathews died at 22:25 hours. To see Bombardier Mathews Commemorative Record please click here.

5 May 1941

03:00 hours. Colonel acting as umpire on Manning Exercise. C Troop 386 Battery and E Troop 388 Battery involved. Very clear and sunny day.

6 May 1941

Funeral of Bombardier Mathews. C.O. on conference about previous day’s Manning Exercise. Adjutant returned from Borganes. Weather fine.

7 May 1941

C.O. attended OCTU Examination Board all day. 934495 Gunner Parker A G 386 Battery missing all day. Reported to Provost Company. Weather fine, dull.

8 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather dull, cold and showery, light Northerly winds.

9 May 1941

Captain Watson and 6 Other Ranks arrived from Borganes.

Battery Sergeant Major Bannerman and 4 Other Ranks returned to Borganes. Weather wet, light wind.

10 May 1941

A and B Troops, 386 Battery, change over during the day. Nothing of importance. Weather dull. C.O. ? out special ? to troops.

11 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather dull. Parade Service for RHQ and Signals Section personnel.

12 May 1941

C.O. out testing special Regimental telephone communications. Visits sentries at Troop positions during night. Weather fine, very sunny. Bright all night.

13 May 1941

Regiment played 1/6/Duke of Wellington’s Regiment in 2nd Round Force Competition. Result 1 – 1. Replay to be re-arranged. Weather fine and bright. 2nd Lieutenant H Calvert and 3 Other Ranks arrive from Borganes for work on aerodrome.

14 May 1941

RALLY practice held satisfactory. Weather fine and sunny, cold.

15 May 1941

Replay Soccer match Regiment versus 1/6 DWR. Result lost 2 – 0. Exercise C Troop 386 Battery with 11th DLI Hafnafjordur. Weather dull, bright intervals.

16 May 1941

Tyneside Scottish Exercise with E Troop 388 Battery. Captain Watson and 3 Other Ranks returned to Borganes. Four Officers 10 Ratings rescued from torpedoed ship at Redesdale Camp. Leave allotment for Regiment received – 2 Officers, 45 Other Ranks. Weather cloudy, rainy intervals, calm.

17 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather fine and bright.

18 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather fine and bright, colder, rain later.

19 May 1941

Revision Course for Acks etc at 386 Battery.

Court of Enquiry held at RHQ into Captain O’Callaghan’s car accident.

CRA visits C.O. at RHQ. Weather – rain all day, mild.

Draw for 1st leave allotment held at RHQ: RSM Burn, Gunners Gates, Harris and Roberts.

Lieutenant Fielder on Revision Course at 386 Battery.

20 May 1941

4 OCTU candidates approved by Board moved to UK as soon as page can be arranged. (Bannerman, Pope, Young, Eves). Weather dull and cloudy, rain at times, mild.

21 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather dull, rainy.

22 May 1941

C.O. on recce with Brigadier Lammie. Weather fine and bright.

23 May 1941

1st Regimental Leave Party and three OCTU candidates arrived from Borganes.

C.R.A. and Brigade Major Royal Artillery left for AKUREYRI by road. C.O. acting as C.R.A.

23:00 hours. Vigilance message sent out by Force HQ. All troops warned to exercise extreme vigilance. Weather showery, bright intervals, mild.

24 May 1941

Vigilance continues in view of naval operations off Greenland (This included the sinking of HMS Hood). Weather fine and bright.

25 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather fine.

26 May 1941

1st Leave Party from Regiment left for UK. BSM Bannerman, Sgts Pope and Young, Bombardier Eves left for OCTU. Gunner ? Leeman left for course at Larkhill. Weather very fine and warm.

27 May 1941

Authority for formation of 3rd Battery received from War Office. Weather being fine and warm.

28 May 1941

507 Battery formed with Battery HQ at Redesdale Camp with 1 Troop and 1 Troop at PACKWAY CAMP, Hafnafjordur. Part 2 Orders giving effect to above issued. Weather very fine and bright. Vigilance order cancelled.

29 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather fine and bright.

30 May 1941

Major Weston and Captain Watson returned to Borganes. Weather very fine and bright.

31 May 1941

Nothing of importance. Weather dull, cool.

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