Irish Brigade

The story of the 38th (Irish) Brigade in the Second World War

July 1943

The Irish Brigade spent most of July 1943 in continuing intensive training at Hammamet, and then moved to Sousse in preparation for embarkation. 78th Division had been earmarked as the reserve division in support of 8th Army’s northerly advance from their landing beaches towards Messina.

Finally on the night of 26th/27th July, the brigade left Sousse, and after a very choppy crossing arrived in Syracuse on the morning of 28th July. Over the next three days, they headed north over very difficult mountain roads towards Catenanuova to the south-west of Mt Etna, and as the month ended, the Irish Brigade were readying themselves for fighting that would attempt to unhinge the German defensives lines and lateral supply roads to the west of Catania.

Read Edmund O’Sullivan’s account of 2 LIR’s crossing to Sicily.


Key Dates:

11th July: The Irish Brigade moves to Sousse in readiness for embarkation to Sicily.

13th July: Lt-Col H Rogers takes over command of 2 LIR from Lt-Col TPD Scott, who is posted as Brigadier of 12 Brigade.

23rd July: Brigadier Russell embarks for Sicily in advance of the rest of the brigade.

28th July: All three battalions arrive at Syracuse and move north towards Catenanuova.


July 1943 Roll of Honour:

5th July – Fusilier Albert Myatt, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.

6th July – Rifleman John Kiely, London Irish Rifles.

14th July – Fusilier Raymond Purvis, Royal Irish Fusiliers.

19th July – Fusilier Ronald Anthony, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.

28th July – Lieutenant Reginald Jackson, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers attached from Yorks/Lancaster Regiment.

Photos above are from the link to the web site of M Bartolo of Pachino, Sicily.


Links to the transcribed July 1943 war diaries.

38 (Irish) Brigade.

6 Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.

1 Royal Irish Fusiliers.

2 London Irish Rifles.


Links to the original July 1943 war diaries. 

38 (Irish) Brigade.

6 Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.

1 Royal Irish Fusiliers.

2 London Irish Rifles.



 

 

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