War Diaries – 4th November 1943


0155 Move of 1 RIrF postponed. Location impossible to ascertain.

0715 6 RWK and 6 Innisks reported in San Salvo. 5 Buffs reported concentrating outside town.

0940 2 LIR reported two enemy deserters taken Farm 611820. Identified Panzer Pi Bttn and 2 Coy 64 Panzer Grenadier Regiment.

0945 Divisional Commander ordered 38 Brigade to patrol forward from left flank to areas 5781, 5879. 1 East Surreys occupied station of San Salvo and ridge to west. Station reported heavily booby trapped. 2 LF and 5 Northamptons concentrating north of River Trigno. 25 Shermans reported moving  north west to Vasto.

1030 1 RIrF reported bridge 665783 collapsing. 6 Innisks reported at 607825 and holding San Salvo with 5 Buffs. Casualties estimated at 100. Enemy counter attack from north of San Salvo shelled effectively by own artillery. Enemy fire continued until 2320hrs 3 November. 1 RIrF reported crater in town at 627824 but not impeding traffic.6 Innisks to remain under command36 Brigade until further notice.

1104 36 Brigade informed 38 Brigade by sitrep that 6 RWK moving to Vineyard Hill (east of San Salvo). 5 Northamptons in readiness. 8 A&SH moving on.

1215 Route to San Salvo via coast road and San Salvo station now believed clear.

1335 11 Brigade reported enemy tanks on their left flank and 4 Armoured Brigade standing by.

1540 Two PoWs taken by 6 Innisks in San Salvo night 3/4 November. Identified 2 & 3 coys 16 Pz Pi Bttn. 1 RIrF reported patrol (two platoons) searched area 6278 and found nothing. Reached pt150 (5979) taking three PoWs. Patrols continuing to search area 5879 – 5779 – 5781. Probably returning 5 November.  

1700 Situation on brigade front see Sitrep.

1725 Division informed brigade of location of MG pt 195 (595787) and enemy mortars 578819.

1 RIrF.

0200 The situation was very confused and the move was cancelled.

1130 B Coy went out as a fighting patrol under Captain JE McNally MC to Pt. 150 – 5979.  They captured 3 prisoners and an MG.  Own casualties from heavy mortaring 1 killed 15 injured all of whom were evacuated safely.

Fusilier Charles Cooper, Royal Irish Fusiliers.

Fusilier Charles Nobbs, Royal Irish Fusiliers.

6 Innisks – SAN SALVO.

0330 Captain Bunch arrived with rations.

0830 Evacuation of wounded carried on.

Civilians ordered to clean up the town and reorganise civil administration. The men killed in the previous day’s battle were collected and brought to the local Innisks cemetery for burial.

36 Brigade continued advance.

Captain Charles Rea, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.

2 LIR.

0900 2 German soldiers identified as belonging to 16 Pioneer Battalion and 1/64 Panzer Grenadier Regiment surrendered to E Company at Farm 621803.

1500 Battalion HQ moved to Farm 633788.