Other formats

    TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Bardia to Enfidaville

8 Armoured Brigade

8 Armoured Brigade

While the regiments of 8 Armoured Brigade each operated on the front of one battalion, and were ‘in support’, the fact that they were advancing in front of the infantry gave them almost an independent role, and on the whole they adhered to their advance page 218 without conforming to the varying fortunes of the infantry. It had been impressed on all the regiments that the important thing was to break through, and that they should not delay on account of individual battles or delays on the flanks of their advance.

Each regiment advanced with its heavy squadron of Shermans and Grants in front, following which came the carriers of the battalions, and then the Crusaders in the second line of tanks followed by the carriers of the armoured regiments. At this point the leading foot soldiers joined the advance. Notts Yeomanry had a rough passage round Point 209, but their war diary cheerfully reports that in the end they got to their objective. Staffs Yeomanry in the centre had the clearest run, and reached Wadi el Aisoub in advance of the final objective. Similarly 3 Royal Tanks on the left reached the same wadi, but only after some difficulty. None of the regiments lost touch completely with its affiliated battalion, although there was a period when the tanks were forging ahead on their own.

In this attack 8 Armoured Brigade lost twelve Shermans, one Grant and three Crusaders, but claimed the destruction of sixteen enemy tanks and sixteen guns. It took 130 prisoners. Of the three regiments 3 Royal Tanks had the heaviest losses, due partly to minefields and partly to enemy tanks.