16th May

Brigade HQ.

Notes on the above conference were issued. These included points discussed at Divisional Conference.

1200 German soldier posing as French civilian was found near Brigade HQ and sent to PoW cage.

1 RIrF.

First recognised Sunday since landing in Africa. Quiet day and a holiday.

6 Innisks – MAXULA REGES.

1730 Film Show held in the nearby school. This was the first entertainment of any kind many members of the bttn had had since November.

2 LIR.

1100 Brigade rehearsal for Victory Parade in Tunis. Divisional Commander took the salute.

17th May

Brigade HQ.

1830 Orders were received from 78 Division that Double Summer Time would be introduced throughout the division on 18 May.

2025 78 Division issued warning order re move to Sousse.

Lieut Concannon arrived at this HQ for training as Brigade IO.

1 RIrF.

0700 Party went to Bougie for mens’ kit bags. Quiet day.

6 Innisks – MAXULA REGES.

Rifle T’s OET being carried out by companies.

Bttn transport inspected by LAD.

18th May

Brigade HQ.

Brigade Major and Lieut Doumic went to recce training area at Sousse.

1600 Brigade Commander visited HQ 5 Corps.

A Special Order of the Day by the Brigade Commander was issued.

Detailed instructions for the Victory March on 20 May were issued to bttns.

1 RIrF.

Orders and preparation for Victory Parade into Tunis.

Q Staff very busy sewing on divisional and brigade signs.

Detailed in attached appendix.

6 Innisks – MAXULA REGES.

Brigade practise for forthcoming Victory March. The three bttns have pooled their Pipes and Drummers for the occasion.

Slip on epaulettes for ORs bearing the divisional sign and shamrock are being made. Officers will wear the same insignia on the sleeve.

19th May

Brigade HQ.

Brigade Commander, Brigade Major and Staff Captain left HQ for assembly area for Victory March.

A rehearsal was held and troops taking part then dispersed to assembly area.

2100 Information was received from 78 Division that the move to Sousse was unlikely to take place.

1 RIrF.

Quiet day. More preparations for Victory March.

1700 Party for the parade move off.

6 Innisks – MAXULA REGES.

0810 Representatives left by transport for Victory March. 9 officers and 45 men per coy. They proceeded to lying up area north of Tunis, and will remain till after the march.

1200 A divisional rehearsal held.  As far as possible, the party is composed of those who have been the longest in Africa.

1800 Lieut Ashe returned to the battalion after illness.

2 LIR.

0800 78 Division rehearsal for Victory Parade in Tunis.

1030 Recce parties move off to concentration area to north of Tunis.

1300 Battalion arrives at concentration area. Lines up night 19/20 May preparatory to forming up in the parade on 20 May.

20th May

Brigade HQ.

A questionnaire circulated by 5 Corps was received and forwarded to bttns.

Victory March.

General Eisenhower took salute in a Victory Parade march past in the Avenue Gambetta, Tunis. Some 22,000 troops of all arms and nationalities involved in the Tunisian campaign marched past.

1 RIrF.

Victory March through Tunis. Extremely hot day. Bttn well represented in the brigade group. The remainder were allowed to watch.

6 Innisks – TUNIS.

1150 Start of Victory Parade. The bttn led the Brigade, following the Rifles. The officers led, followed by the bttn with the WOs bringing up the rear, all nine abreast. Aircraft flew overhead and the streets were lined with tanks and guns. General Eisenhower and General Giraud took the salute.

The bttn returned to camp by transport arriving at 1530. Spectators were allowed, as many as wished to go and the 15% ban was lifted – they commented on the smartness of our KD shorts in comparison with some Allied uniforms.

1830 The kit bags and officers’ boxes left in Bone arrived here. Also the band kit, much damaged.

2 LIR.

0600 Transport moves to other side of Tunis.

1140  Battalion formed up in the Parade ready to move off. 78 Division leads contingent of British troops: the order of march being Royal Artillery Royal Engineers 11 Brigade 26 Brigade, 38 Brigade. The battalion was represented by some 130 men. They looked extremely well and smart and marched well. Every man was wearing a caubeen and hackle adding an additional splash of colour to the gay scene. All the officers of the three battalions marched in front of the brigade. Those representing the battalion included the four who were left out of the original battalion which came out in November last year. They were Major APK O’Connor, Major JD Lofting, Captain RC Cockburn, Captain GG Hall, Captain TWH Wilson, Lieutenant JD O’Rourke, Lieutenant Tasker, Lieutenant AG Howells, Lieutenant CRM Heaps, Lieutenant MJ Hughes.

Ref to appendices – Photos of entry into Tunis 2 copies. Marked ‘A’

Copy of battalion Training Instructions No-1 issued 20 May marked ‘B’.