6th May

Brigade HQ – UDINE.

1000 Brigade Group travelled all through the night and reached Pordenone at about 1000 hrs. Further orders were issued for the column to go on to the Udine area. Advance parties had already gone on to recce areas.

1300 Brigade Group arrived in Udine area and were complete by 1700 hrs.

Brigade Group consists of the following:

Locations also given –

Brigade HQ – Fontanabona 3728.

2 Innisks – Udine 4219.

2 LIR – Pagnacco 3626.

1 RIrF Campoforudo 3515.

17 Field Regiment RA – Colugna 3822.

254 A/Tk Battery RA – Udine 4219.

D Support Group (1 Kensingtons) – Tricesimo 3931.

152 Field Ambulance – Udine 4219.

5 Corps ordered brigade to establish road blocks in Udine area in conjunction with Tito forces to prevent dumps of food and ammunition being taken out of the country to Yugoslavia.

2 Innisks in Udine were also ordered to search the town to find remaining food dumps and place guards on them if any found. The other two battalions were ordered to search roads and areas leading out of Udine for food and ammunition dumps.


1 RIrF – 3318.

Bttn continued move to allotted area, 3 villages about Colloredo.


2 Innisks – TREVISO/UDINE

0230 The bttn arrived in Brigade Staging Area at Treviso.

0700 The bttn left Treviso and travelled at a good speed to the town of Udine, arriving at 1000 hrs.

1200 The bttn was placed at two hours notice to move, so everybody was confined in the bttn area. C Coy was told to stand by at one hours notice and to be prepared to go and engage some enemy formations, who were reported hiding out in the hills north of Udine.

1700 A conference was held at Bttn HQ at which the Commanding Officer outlined the political situation in the area. The situation was rather complex and, on no account, were we to get involved in any political quarrels that might arise. Tension existed between Tito’s Yugoslav army and the Green scarf Partisans of Italy. These Yugoslavs claimed to be Patriots, while the Green scarfs claimed they were democratic. The situation was further complicated by the presence of Garabaldi Partisan Red Scarfs and the Italian Regular Army.

1700 It was decided that the bttn would be allowed out until 2200hrs, the men availed themselves of the opportunity to visit Udine.


2 LIR – ITALY.

0700 Bttn halted in staging area San Maria Rovere (639782) about 3 kms north of Treviso where breakfast and later a tea meal was served.

1200 Bttn convoy moves off on final stage of journey.

1600 Bttn arrive in Udine area. Owing to unsuitability of billets, the CO carried out a personal recce in the evening for a new Bttn HQ. Present Bttn HQ located at 345239.



7th May

Brigade HQ – UDINE.

The Osoppo partisans, divided into the Red and Green Brigades, were contacted during the morning for assistance in interpreters and locating enemy dumps.

The infiltration of the Yugoslav forces into N Italy made it necessary for road posts to be manned by them as well as our own troops. The food situation in the area was critical and all dumps were guarded extremely carefully by our own troops as much as food had been cleared by the Yugoslav forces to their own country.

2 Innisks also reported considerable dumps of ammunition in Udine, which they took over.

Orders received from 5 Corps to send one battalion to Caporetto 6749 and one to Cividale 5623 tomorrow morning.


1 RIrF – 3318.

Establish five road check points to control traffic. Orders for dispersal of enemy personnel.


2 Innisks  – UDINE.

0900 The Bttn Quarter Guard was mounted in the Public Square, this caused great interest among the civilian population. Orders were received to establish road blocks on the three main roads leading to Udine with a view to controlling movement of unauthorised people and looting of enemy dumps. The Garrison of each post was comprised of eight Inniskillings and eight Yugoslavs.

1000 Yugoslav Liaison officer arrived at Bttn HQ; the language difficulty was overcome by a mixture of Italian, French and German.

1100 Orders were received that a search of Udine was to be made to locate and take over enemy ammunition dumps, this to be done on the 8th of May.

1600 Road blocks established. Owing to the lack of transport, the Yugoslav part of the Garrison arrived at 2200 hrs. Displaced persons arriving from Austria and other parts of Italy, kept those posts very busy.


2 LIR – ITALY.

0900 Advance party move to Bttn HQ.

1100 Main body move to new Bttn HQ. Bttn locations now as follows:

Bttn HQ – 369264, E Coy – 372262, F Coy – 372257, G Coy – 373262, H Coy – 372257, S Coy – 389252.

Bttn’s role in present static conditions is to be a controlling force over civilian and partisan movement to prevent looting and removal of captured enemy weapons and supplies. The first enemy dump to be put under guard was a diesel oil and lubricant dump located in the grounds of Bttn HQ itself. Previously, the dump had been guarded by Partisans and later for a few hours by a section of the 1 Kensingtons MMG Platoon.



8th May

Brigade HQ – UDINE.

Two coys 2 LIR move to Caporetto 6749 to take over from 1 Welch. Bttn HQ and 2 coys remain in present locations. 1 RIrF move to Cividale 562 during the morning. Both battalions established road blocks in conjunction with Yugoslav forces.

1500 The Prime Minister announced the end of the War in Europe and the cessation of hostilities at one minute past midnight on the 8/9 April.


1 RIrF  – 3318.

0900 Bttn moved to Cividale 555225. CO and IO to D Coy (Major J Wilton) posts at Caporetto 670398 to arrange relief by 2 LIR.

Bttn Pipe Band played retreat in public square.


2 Innisks – UDINE.

0800 The town of Udine, having been divided into six parts, six sections from A Coy started the search for enemy arms.

1030 The Yugoslavs on the road posts started to take the weapons off the Italian Green scarfs, thus causing friction, those incidents caused a lot more work and talk on our part. Later in the day, after a visit by the Divisional CO to the Yugoslav HQ, the Yugoslavs agreed to allow all Italians to retain their personal arms.

1500 Most of the Inniskillings, that were not on duty, listened to Mr Churchill’s broadcast announcing the end of the war with Germany but in view of the situation prevailing in this area, this seemed unreal and the difficulties, which lay ahead were only too clear. At the end of the broadcast, the bttn carried on in a normal way.

1800 The Regimental Band beat Retreat outside Bttn HQ, which brought much applause from the Italian public.

2030 Most of the personnel not on duty went to see the film, “Two Girls and a Sailor” shown by the mobile film unit. The rest of VE Day was without incident.


2 LIR –ITALY.

0400 Bttn warned to send two coys forward to Caporetto area at 0900 hrs. Main Bttn HQ and remaining two coys at 1200 hrs.

1000 Tac HQ and E and H Coy move forward.

During the course of the morning, the move forward of the remaining two coys was cancelled. The two forward coys established traffic control posts in the Plezzo (656499) area near to the Austrian border, which they held until relieved by units of 46th Division on early morning of 9 May. The area held by two forward coys was also garrisoned in strength by units of the Yugoslav Army.

1500 Prime Minister’s radio address to the Empire announcing Germany’s final capitulation, The Cease Fire in Europe to be sounded at one minute past midnight.

1600 Bttn warned to have an advance party ready to a new area. Time of departure as yet unknown.



9th May

Brigade HQ – UDINE.

Coys 2 LIR relieved by bttn 138 Brigade (46th Division) in Caporetti and return to old locations.

There were no further incidents between the Yugoslavs, Italians or the partisans in general.

2000 Message received from 5 Corps ordering the Brigade Group less 2 Innisks to move to the Villach area, which was subsequently changed to the Klagenfurt area where the Brigade would go under command 6 Armoured Division. Brigade Commander to report to HQ 6 Armoured Division as soon as possible tomorrow morning.

Move orders were issued that night and 2 Innisks instructed to take over commitments of the Brigade Group. D Support Group and brigade carriers to move on 11 May.


1 RIrF – 3318.

Nothing to Report.


2 Innisks – UDINE.

During the morning, a few arms which had been located the previous day were collected and taken to the weapon dump. Yugoslavs again wanted to disarm the Italian Green Scarfs of their personal weapons. It had been agreed that that all weapons other than personal weapons were to be confiscated. It was now apparent that the Yugoslav army  wanted to take over the Province of Udine; the Green Scarfs were opposing this move by all means short of actual conflict. The Italian Red Scarf party were inclined towards the Yugoslavs.

1500 One of the road blocks confiscated a 75 mm Gun that was being taken to Udine by the Red Scarfs. It later transpired that these particular Red Scarfs were of an assault division of the Yugoslav National Army. Later in the day, the guns was returned to the Yugoslavs in Udine.

1800 The Drums and Pipes of the brigade played in the main square of the city; this attracted hundreds of civilians.


2 LIR – ITALY.

0001 Bttn buglers blow the Cease Fire.

1000 Bttn warned no move today.

1400 Tac HQ, E and H Coys returned from Plezzo area on relief by units of 46 Division.

1800 Pipe Band played at Udine.



10th May

Brigade HQ – KLAGENFURT 2383

0830 Brigade Commander leaves to report to 6 Armoured Division HQ.

1000 17 Field Regiment and 254 A/Tk Battery leaves Udine area.

1100 Brigade Commander arrives at 6 Armoured Division HQ and then goes onto 61 Brigade HQ to receive full details of the situation.

1100 152 Field Ambulance leaves.

1330 1 RIrF moves.

1230 2 LIR moves.

1530 Brigade HQ moves.

1 RIrF and 17 Field Regiment moved by Route 54 and then Route 13 while the remainder of the Group kept solely to Route 13. In this manner, the time factor was considerably reduced and facilitated movement, having two roads instead of one.

Brigade Group was harboured in an area east of Klagenfurt about four miles out of the town. Brigade HQ established on the northern outskirts of Klagenfurt 2383.

1800 GOC 6 Armoured Division visits the Brigade Commander and gives his full details and instructions. Orders for Brigade Group to move to Wolfsberg 6405 and San Andrae 6297 early tomorrow morning.


1 RIrF    

Bttn move to staging area east of Klagenfurt Austria area 2982 where a certain amount of enemy military and civilian transport was required.


2 Innisks – UDINE.

During the day, the Brigade Posts arrested small numbers of people, most of whom were proved innocent and released. There were no incidents with the Yugoslavs during the day.


2 LIR – ITALY.

0400 Bttn warned that advance party would move north into Austria at 0730 hrs. Main body to follow at 1100 hrs.

0730 Bttn advance party move off. Route – Tolmezzo, Tarvisio through  the Thorl Pass to Villach, thence to Klagenfurt.

1100 Bttn main body move off.

1700 Bttn now staging in Klagenfurt area. Bttn HQ at 252812 with coys in close proximity.