In February 1944 the Irish Brigade moved to the Cassino sector which, with its famous monastery and the vast bulk of Monte Cairo towering in the distance, had long held up the Allied advance towards Rome. At this time there were several changes in command. Brigadier TPD Scott, CBE, DSO, who had relinquished command of the 2nd Battalion London Irish Rifles in the previous July on promotion to command 12 Brigade, returned to lead the Irish Brigade. Brigadier Nelson Russell, who had fought with the brigade for nearly eighteen months, had had his health undermined and he was ordered into hospital.
The 2nd Battalion London Irish Rifles was then commanded by Lieut-Colonel Ion Goff, with Major HEN Bredin, DSO, MC, as Second-in-Command, but the latter became Commanding Officer of the 6th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, and was succeeded by Major J Coldwell-Horsfall, MC.