67th Medium Regiment, R.A. (T.A.)

Image courtesy of Jack Knight, Little Thurlow airfield 1940.

Do you have a family member from this Regiment? We are researching Suffolk men who served in the 67th in WW2.They fought in North Africa and were captured at Tobruk in June 1942, becoming prisoners of war. We hold a unique collection of photos and personal accounts of men who served during this time. We would like to hear from you if you had a relative in the Regiment to help keep the memory of the 67th alive.

Please contact: Jane Bradburn   jbradburn4464@gmail.com

 

67th Medium Regiment (Suffolk) R.A. (T.A.)

Consisted of: HQ, 232 Battery (Ipswich), 231 Battery (Woodbridge & Felixstowe)

67th Medium Regiment was raised in 1939 as a duplicate of 58th (Suffolk) Medium Regiment R.A. (T.A.) (part of the doubling of the TA in 1939), with 231 and 232 Batteries.

Men were recruited in Ipswich, Felixstowe and Woodbridge in 1939. On the outbreak of war, the Regiment served in defence of south east England against enemy attack. It was sent to North Africa in July 1941 as part of the Operation Crusader. It served under the 8th Army in the Western Desert from November 1941 until June 1942. The entire Regiment was captured in Tobruk on 21st June 1942. On surrender, the men became prisoners of the Italy army and were transferred to Italian POW camps. The Italian armistice on 3rd Sept. 1943 enabled some to escape back to Allied Lines or to Switzerland, most were transported to POW camps in Germany, Austria and Poland. The majority of casualties in the Regiment resulted from the sinking of the Italian merchant ship SS Scillin in November 1942.

The Regiment reformed at Hunstanton, Norfolk on 15th February 1943 and fought their way through France and Belgium and into Germany as part of third AGRA (Army Group Royal Artillery). It was attached to the 12th Corps, having captured Hamburg, when hostilities ceased on 1st May 1945. It was disbanded in 1947.

 

 

1st November 1943 – Evening Star

IPSWICH P.O.W. ESCAPES FROM ITALY
Walked 100 Miles to Switzerland

An Ipswich man, Gunner R.L. Allard, is among the British prisoners of
war who succeeded in escaping from Italy into Switzerland. His parents,
Mr. and Mrs. P.E. Allard, of 143, Back Hamlet, have received official
intimation of this, together with a letter from their son, stating he is
now an internee in Switzerland, “in the good care of the British
Consulate.”

Gunner Allard, who was formerly in Camp No. 55, describes his escape in his letter. “I had rather a hectic time getting here,” he states, “but I
was successful after six days walking between ninety and a hundred
miles, two days of which we spent in mountains, the others walking
across fields etc., dodging ‘that horrible man’ again. I was once again
very lucky to be in a working party because I am told all the big
concentration camps have been taken to Germany . . . I once again left
in just what I stand up in – this time horribly worn ‘civvies’ given to
us by the farmer. Three of us got through – all strangers.” Allard adds
that he is perfectly well “apart from one or two blisters on my feet.”
Gunner Allard, who is 22 was formerly employed in the York Road stores
of the Ipswich Industrial Co-operative Society, Ltd.

 

List of the 67th Regiment from Ipswich.

Charles William Arthur Addison
Cyril James Ayden


Raymond Leonard Allard
W. A. Andrews
Douglas Edward Thompson Argent
Reginald Henry Arnold
Leslie Ernest Arrell
* Joseph Francis Neville Atherton
James Avis
Charles William Austin
Kenneth Herbert Bailey
Eric John Baker
*Frederick William Banyard
Richard Leonard Barber
Leonard Harry Barnard
John Curtis Barker
Ronald Horace Barker
* Dennis Edward Adin William Barnes
Frank Joseph Beard


Frederick Charles Edward Beecroft
Leonard Ellis George Bergdahl
W.J. Bevis
Burchett
Blackwell Robert John
Bloomfield Norman
Blowers R.G.
Borrett R.L.
Borrett William Henry F.
Bradbrook F.
Brasher Ernie
Brookes S.
Brown C.W.
Brown Harold c.
Brown T.H.
Bruce Jack Douglas
Buckles Cyril Stanley
Bugg Horace William
Bunn John William
Burrows Harry
Burrows John Leslie
Calver Douglas Albert E.
Calver Harold S.
Canham George Henry
Capocci Joseph Victor C.
Catling Eric Charles
Chandler Terence Claude


*Chamberlain Frederick
Charles Peter Thomes
Chenery George R.F.
Cherrington Frederick William
Chisholm Cyril Albert S

*Chisnall Arthur
*Chittock Stanley Horace
Churchyard Douglas Denis
*Clarke Charles Reuben
Clements Jack L.
Clough W.J.
Coates Walter Henry
Cobb H.S.
Colthorpe
Cooper James Harris
Cooper S.G.


*Culf Eric Harold
Culley Eric Russell


Curl Stanley Arthur
Curtis Douglas Claude
Dale Archibald Ernest William
*Daniels Douglas Henry James
*Davey Arthur Henry
Davey Herbert John
Day Cyril Reginald
Day Raymond Herbert John
Dickerson Stanley Franklin
Dixey Albert George
Dobson Frank Albert George
Downard Alan C.
Downs J.E.
Doylend Anthony Thurgill.
Drane Frederick William
Drane Leslie C.


Eaves Leonard Sydney
Evans Stanley


Fairweather Leonard A.
Fenton Arthur Henry
Finbow Clifford Burwood
*Finbow Leonard Stanley
Fincham Harold Clement
Fletcher Alan


*Foulger Edward Bertie
Francis Douglas James
*French Jack Edwin
Fudge Alfred James
Fuller Herbert Leonard


Fussell William Charles
Garnham Walter E.
Garrod Edward John
Girling R.W.
Goldsmith Charles Philip W.
Gould Russell Jack


James Frederick F. Gray
G.F. Green
H.W. Grimwood
Eric George Hall
Ernest C. Hall


Halliday Leslie Stanley (image 1944 Evening Star)
A. Hammond
*Eric Harold Hammond
George Harper
Donald Arthur Harris
Harold Russell Haste
Ronald C. Haxell
John M. Hayden
Frederick Arthur Hogger
L.B. Hollis
Arthur Horton
R.D. Hoskins
Harry Arthur W. Howes
Leslie Hunter
Alexander Edward Innes
George James
Philip Albert Jay
Reginald Victor Keeble
S. Keeble
Fred Keeman
John Robinson Keen
L. King
Jack Knight
Kenneth Victor Lake
W.G. Lamb
I.F.J. Lauder
Roy Lee
Leech
Mitchell C.T. Leeks
Douglas Kenneth Leggett
Kenneth A. Lowe
William Frederick Macklin


*Mallett Alfred William
S.G. Mallett


Mann Rodney John
Manning Reginald Alfred Valentine
*Maplestone Frederick Charles
Maskell Stanley William
Mason H.
Mather Kenneth Elliot Scott
Mayes H.
Mayhew Arthur
Mee Cyril Stanley


*Meadows Reginald Alfred
Meredith Eric Charles
Miller C.F.
Moore William George
Moorey William Charles E.
Moorman Charles Frank
Murrell Raymond James L.
Murton Sidney Arthur
Murton F.C.
Newman Victor W.S.


*Northrop Frederick Walter
Norton Douglas Victory
Noy Maurice
Nunn Thomas Basil
Offord Arthur Edward
Page Frederick C.
Palmer J.A.
Palmer Leslie C.
Pearce Raymond William
Peake Harold
Pendle Dennis
Philpot R.E.
Pipe Albert Edward
Pryke J.W.A.
Quinton Alfred
Quinton Norman Basil
Ramsey D.E.
Ransby R.F.
Robinson I.E.
Rookyard J.W.
Rowe Jack W.C.H.
Rumsey Harold George
Russell J.F.


Frank Edward Salmon
Sydney Douglas Scott
C.D. Sharman
C.D. Sharpe
Edward Shaw
J.F. Shepherd
Donald J. Sherwood
Simpson
Frank Edward Slinn
*A.E. Smith
J.R. Smith
J.H. Smith
S.J. Smith
 *Russell Sylvian Smith-
Thomas W. Smith
C.A.W Smy
Ernest Smy
G.A. South
Leslie M. Spall
H.S. Spinks
Herbert Stollery
J. Strowlger
Cyril F. Talbot
A.E. Talbot
S.W. Tetlow
Stanley Theobald
Len Thomas
A.L. Thomas
Edward Charles V. Thompson
C. G. Thorpe
Hugh Curtis Tinley
Ken Todds


*Stanley Charles Todd
Alec Tolley


Dennis Frederick Tooke
Russell Oliver Tricker
F.A. Wade
Thomas Henry Wale
Albert Edward Wallis
Alfred Stanley Ward
Frank George S. Ward
D.N. Ward
Albert George Warne
E.J. Warne
Stanley Reginald D. Waters
Harold Douglas Webb
Cecil Henry E. Whittaker
George Edward Wilson


*Peter Wilfred Charles Wilson
Jack Wright
R.G. Wright
Thomas R. Wright
* William Charles Youngman

*Indicates death during WW2 – 23 men

14th November 1942
On the 13th November 1942, over 800 PoWs weak from the lack of food and medical treatment were loaded onto the S.S.’Scillin,’ at the Spanish Quay in Tripoli Harbour. The men were penned into the severely overcrowded hold, with insanitary conditions. The only air and light came through a small hatch. A further 195 PoWs were left behind to board another ship after the British Captain Gilbert, of the R.A.M.C. made a strong forceful and intense protest that the ship was already overcrowded.
With an Italian Naval gun crew and guards, the ship set sail three hours late on it’s passage from Tripoli to Trapani, Sicily.
The British P212 submarine H.M.S. ‘Sahib’ (Lieutenant John Bromage), was on patrol in support of the Axis campaign in North Africa. When S.S. ‘Scillin’ appeared on their radar. In the darkness, 9 miles north of Kuriat, Tunisa Lt. Bromage, believing that the ship was carrying Italian troops, ordered open fire of their 3inch gun as a signal for the ship to stop. She did not respond. At 19:50hrs a torpedo was fired. The torpedo blew out the bottom of the hold in which the PoWs were penned. There was little chance of survival and the ship sank rapidly.
H.M.S.’Sahib’ rescued 27 PoWs (26 British & 1 South African), plus S.S. Scillin’s Captain and 45 Italian crew members, before an Italian warship arrived and H.M.S. ‘Sahib’ was forced to withdraw. Only when the survivors (who later landed in Malta) were heard speaking English did Lt. Bromage realise that the ship had been carrying PoWs.

The ‘friendly fire’ tragedy was investigated as a war crime, due to the captivity of the men kept in the hold and the subsequent inquiry absolved Lt. Bromage of any blame. The Ministry of Defence kept the incident a secret for 54 years. Telling families that their loved ones had died as PoWs in camps, or ‘lost at sea.’ In 1996, after repeated requests from the families the truth was revealed.

S.S.’Scillin.’67th Medium Regiment information used from the work of Brian Sims (1997) and courtesy of Pat Dowsing.

A family note:
Linda Stollery Crowder
“Thank you so much for this article, it makes sense to a family story I was told over thirty years ago. After trying to research and not finding much this has really helped. Alfred was my great uncle although we never met his name had never been forgotten. my nana had been deeply saddened by his death and the story of his death has always stayed with me.”

Posted in Second World War

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

ALLAN ARTHUR FREANE 1

ALFRED JAMES MURRELL 1

error: Content is protected !!