Brigade HQ – BOU ARADA.
A letter was sent to Bttns stating that 6 pounder guns were being issued as they became available.
Intelligence Summary issued and the following conclusion drawn: “Enemy appears to be attempting to build up positions (in what strength it is not known) on our North flank. It may be observed that should enemy attack our present positions, he would have to use a plan, which would neutralise our artillery superiority. This might be done from the heights north of our artillery positions with MGs and mortars.”
0830 Two enemy planes on recce fly low over this HQ. Following information reported from 10 RB patrol night 31 Jan/1 Feb, a platoon made daylight recce from 589081 to high ground 5912. There was sign of enemy or digging on the way.
1800 Movement (checked and found to be enemy) was reported at 615165. Farm 615162 was stated by Arabs to be German occupied.
A memorandum was received by Commander 6 Armoured Division Signals “supporting and infantry support by controlled artillery fire.” Comms of FOOs and artillery OPs were discussed and it was emphasised that physical contact between infantry commander and FOO was not the best solution to the problem.
Coy 10 RBs standing by was ordered to move to Argoub and relieve Bttn 1 Parachute Brigade.
1 RIrF – GRANDSTAND HILL.
0530 Bttn HQ commenced moving.
0730 Bttn HQ opened. Old location reopened 640076.
During the day, normal activities continued (ie resting as much as possible, work etc being done by night). Major BH Butler had 24 hr rest at HQ 38 (Irish) Infantry Brigade.
It was decided to withdraw C Coy from the exposed forward position it had occupied on Ragoubet Lalla Hanna 6525 since 25 Dec’42 and replace them with B Coy.
6 Innisks – IN THE FIELD.
The patrolling for night 31 Jan / 1 Feb is of a purely recce nature as it is our new area.
C Coy send out Lieut Myler, a sergeant and corporal to recce Mehalla C 6707.
D Coy send out Lieut Wood, a sergeant and a corporal to recce Barka J 6705 and J 6706.
0020 Lt Wood, who encountered enemy recce patrol is sent out again with another six men as fighting patrol.
0215 Lt Myler reported back – had also seen enemy recce patrol, in about the same area as D Coy patrol.
0340 Lt Wood reported back – he had not been able to find any enemy.
1000 CO holds usual patrol coordinating conference. The following patrols for night 1/ 2 are arranged. C Coy to send out fighting patrol under Sgt O’Donnell to area where enemy recce patrols were seen last night.
D Coy to establish two watch and warning patrols on forward slopes of pt 279. Capt McCaldin and Lieut Motherwell and 1 OR to go nine miles into enemy territory as far as J 7207 on recce and destructive mission.
1100 CO goes round MG positions with Capt Daly. 2.i.c. visits rear Brigade HQ to fix up small queries.
1130 Staff Captain arrives and asks if we have any queries.
1830 CO watches C Coy go out to night area.
A quiet evening. A warm sunny day.
E Company move to area 6278 under command of 36th Infantry Brigade.
1840 Patrol ‘Drake’ to farm 641123, but had nothing to report.