Brigade HQ – BOU ARADA.
5 Corps Operational Instruction No 8 received.
221569 Capt H Graydon RA ChD rejoined unit from hospital attached 2 LIR.
Brigade instructions for changeover of vehicles with 1 Guards Brigade issued.
Patrols night 10/11 Mar encountered enemy patrol. Platoon 1 RIrF raided Farm 618112. No enemy seen. Details as in Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 11 March.
1 RIrF – REST AREA.
During the night, the Bttn sent out no patrols nor was any incident reported.
0700 OPs again posted deep at 565107 and 6011. One SD man accompanied the latter, another went in search of the destination of the signal cable found at Farm Peladon.
Lieut JS Clarke posted to 18 Army Group Battle School as instructor and struck off strength.
1930 OPs and search party reported above came in. The cables destination was undiscovered and the OPs observed no enemy activity.
6 Innisks – IN THE FIELD.
0200 Sgt Russell took 10 men from D Coy out to pt 286. They crawled up to the top from the SE and got to within 6 yards of a trench containing 3 men manning an MG. Other trenches nearby were occupied and the enemy appeared very alert. It seemed impossible to snaffle any prisoners, so the patrol suddenly opened fire and each man threw a grenade into the various trenches.
The enemy returned fire, but our patrol withdrew safely. Sgt Russell was confident that several casualties were inflicted upon the enemy. He also reported that the occupants of 286 appeared to be more wide awake than formerly and possibly belonged to a new unit. The day was uneventful, with the enemy again very quiet.
After dark, D Coy 1 RIrF relieved A Coy, 1 RIrF, in the farms between Grandstand and Bou Arada.
Another A Coy patrol went out to W Hill and Plough Top, but a thorough search revealed no sign of enemy night positions or standing patrols.
D Coy sent out five men to report on the vehicle activity behind 286 and Barka, but although they lay up for some time in the gully NW of Barka, they heard nothing. Probably, the vehicle did not set out, as the night was very wet and the ground a sea of mud. Another patrol of two men set out to recce enemy dispositions on Lalla Fatma (7007), but had to turn back when only halfway owing to the weather and the state of the ground.
B Coy sent out 1 officer and 10 men (including 4 pioneers) to blow up the Teller Mine dump in Stop Farm, reported by Lt Wood. When about 200 yards from the farm, they were challenged in English and did not fire straightaway. The recce in front then said “We are French, do not fire and the patrol commander decided that the people before him were a German patrol, so he opened fire. One of the enemy came in and threw a grenade. Our patrol was not bunched together at this time but strung out, with only 2/3 men forward. In the darkness, the commander could not get everyone together, and after firing most of his ammunition, decided to withdraw, with the 4/5 men he could find. 2 men were slightly wounded from the patrol. Eventually all struggled back to the Bttn area, with the exception of Sgt Lortie, a Canadian NCO attached to the unit. His body was found near the scene of the action on the following night. Also, one man was missed. It was believed that he was wounded and taken prisoner.
Most of the day was uneventful, but towards dusk, the enemy was seen moving into positions on the forward positions on Mehallah and eight vehicles went onto Gribana, three or four vehicles were heard about 2030 hrs behind pt 286, and shortly after, one of these moved off to the east. Some mortaring of the Bttn area then took place, the bombs, six in number, falling o the north side of Si Aek, but no casualties were caused. A mortar flash was suspected at 683077 at 2050 hrs. All the above enemy positions were then heavily engaged by our artillery.
1015 Small patrols sent out by H Company.
1130 Arabs drove cattle and goats through minefield west of H company’s positions 610060.