38 (Irish) Brigade – March 1943

1st March – BOU ARADA.

The following SD personnel were attached to Bttns: 6 Innisks, Groze (French speaking). 2 LIR, Bell (French and Arabic speaker). 1 RIrF, Priand (French and German speaker).

Results of patrols night 28 Feb/1 Mar see Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 1 March.

2nd March – BOU ARADA.

Contact made with enemy patrols night 1/2 March. For details, see Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 2 March. Brigade informed Division that C Squadron, 142 RAC will come under command 38 Brigade as soon as possible after dark night 2/3 March.

Propaganda leaflets, distributed over enemy lines by base ejection shells, were fired today. Units were warned that leaflets will serve as safe conduct passes and copies were distributed.

3rd March – BOU ARADA.

For details of patrols 2/3 Mar and OP reports, see 38 Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 3 March.

38 Brigade Operational Order No 13 issued.

133460 Capt J Hayes, RA ChD taken on the strength of Brigade HQ, and attached 1 Field Ambulance.

4th March – BOU ARADA.

Patrols laid mines at 660105. No contact made. Twenty men seen entering Stop Farm (6410), and engaged by our artillery.

0815-0845 Brigade front from Grandstand (6507) – Mosque (5808) shelled by enemy.

1800 Two platoons 6 Innisks put in an attack against Barka and Pt 286. Four enemy MG posts reported knocked out and fifteen casualties inflicted on enemy. Details see 38 Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 5 March.

5th March – BOU ARADA.

Personal message from BGS First Army regarding changeover of 38 (Irish) from 6 Armoured Division to 78 Division received.

Owner of farm 616108 reported than his house was used as an enemy RAP during the recent battle and that 19 killed and 36 enemy wounded had passed through it. He also reported that Farm 617112 had been used as an HQ.

6th March – BOU ARADA.

Contact was made with enemy Farm 654129. Results of patrol and enemy activity on the brigade front, see 38 Brigade Intelligence summary dated 6 March.

7th March – BOU ARADA.

Day patrols destroyed many enemy telephone comms. No contact made. Two SD personnel destroyed enemy ammunition dump at Farm 618112.

8th March – BOU ARADA.

No contact made by patrols. Trace showing area patrolled attached.

9th March – BOU ARADA.

No contact made with enemy.

10th March – BOU ARADA.

Enemy aircraft attacked A Echelon, 1 RIrF at 0830 hrs and inflicted two casualties. Brigade letter enemy equipment issued.

11th March – 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.

12th March – BOU ARADA.

Trace of minefields in 38 Brigade area as on 12 March issued.

Vehicle exchange with 1 Guards Brigade took place.

Enemy attacked Minefield Farm. Platoon 6 Innisks beat it off inflicting casualties and taking a PW.

13th March – BOU ARADA.

Enemy encountered at 649049, details see 38 Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 14 March. Tracing of A/Tk positions in 38 Brigade area as at 13 March issued.

38 Brigade OO No 14 issued.

14th March – BOU ARADA.

78 Division Operational Instruction No 19 regarding reorganisation in the Divisional area received.

38 Brigade relieved in present position by 3 Brigade. 1 RIrF remain under command 3 Brigade.

2788 Squadron RAF Regiment under command 38 Brigade.

Recce parties left for Gafour.

15th March – BOU ARADA.

Relief of 38 Brigade during night 14/15 carried out according to plan and without enemy interference. 1 King’s Shropshire Light Infantry relived 10 RB and 1 Duke of Wellington’s Regiment relived 2 LIR. Recce party left area Gafour for new location near Testour (4420).

Brigade HQ closed present location (Farm Cussac) 1900 hrs and reopened same time south of Testour (442207).

16th March – TESTOUR.

Nothing to report.

17th March – TESTOUR.

154045 Capt ETU Lewis RA ChD ceased to be posted on the strength of this HQ.

223396 Capt GLC Mitchell RA ChD posted to this HQ as C of E padre attached 6 Innisks.

18th March – TESTOUR.

38 Brigade dispositions: Brigade HQ 442207. 2 LIR (less one Coy) 444207. H Coy Trent Bridge (4718). 6 Innisks under command 36 Brigade 483303. 1 RIrF under command 3 Brigade Bou Arada.

19th March – TESTOUR.

Instructions regarding Divisional Field Firing Range issued

20th March – TESTOUR.

38 Brigade Training Instruction No 1 issued.

38 Brigade Anti Malarial Order No 1 issued.

21st March – TESTOUR.

38 Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 20 March issued with general outline of 78 Division Area: A – own troops, B – enemy.

22nd March – TESTOUR.

Lt J Hall, 6 Innisks IO 38 Brigade posted to 78 Division as LO.

23rd March – TESTOUR.

Nothing to report.

24th March – TESTOUR.

Personal message received from Corps Commander congratulating all ranks on their fine performance received.

25th March – TESTOUR.

38 Brigade Admin Order No 3 issued.

78 Division less 36 and 11 Brigades relieved by 1 Division and moved to reserve area.

26th March – TESTOUR.

Lt FJA Clarke posted this HQ as LO vice Lt J Hall.

38 Brigade’s dispositions as attached as Appendix 28.

27th March – TESTOUR.

Divisional Commander’s message dated 26 March received. In 38 Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 26 March.

28th March – TESTOUR.

HQ 38 Brigade and 6 Innisks to pass under command 46 Division. Recce parties to reach 46 Div HQ by 1000 hrs 29 March. 5 Grenadier Guards to come under command 24 Guards Brigade to relieve 6 Innisks.

38 Brigade HQ closed present location 442207 at 1900 hrs and moved to Beja via Teboursouk and Thibar.

38 Brigade HQ opened at Farm Venec 2300 hrs.

29th March – BEJA.

Lt DGF Kirkham RUR ceased to be attached to this HQ and returned to 2 LIR.

30th March – BEJA.

Nothing to report.

31st March – BEJA.

Dispositions 38 Brigade as given in 38 Brigade Intelligence Summary dated 31 March.

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