History

From dad's scrap book

Drivers ID


Dad once told me that he got his driving license in the war. He said he just had to drive a motor bike around a field; if you didn't fall off, you were given a license.

army form A2038 driver ID card WW2


The description of dad reads; Height 5'6" shallow complexion  eyes brown!  hair dark brown

This description could presumably apply to thousands of troops at the time.


A few more photos



Battery 164 "B" Troop Gunners, 59th Regiment RA HAA WW2
164 Battery "B" Troop (Italy 1944)


No.1 Gun crew
James, Kent, Bedder, Waterton
Butcher, Luscombe, Petty, Holder, Blamire
Rea




No.2 Gun crew
Hummerston, Elliott, Bassett, Phillips
Attree, Grayson, Cochrane, Mahoney
Schofield





No.3 Gun crew
O'Brien, Henson, Holmes
Ames, Parker H, Harris, Bentley, Frimley






No.4 Gun crew
Bampton, Tong, Petty, Bellany, Penfold
Harding, Webb, Richardson, Hillier






This looks like some pointless job suitable for a couple of junior Gunners






59th Regiment "band": Italy 1944/5






Dad did play the drums in the Boys Brigade, but I suspect these jokers are just posing, rather than playing (Italy 1944/5)











That’s dad on the right, wearing a top with “IVY” stitched on the front (Italy 1944)








59th Regiment 164 Battery "B" Sergeants Mess
164 Battery 1944 (Italy). By this time, none of these guys are working in the Gun crews; I wonder what their jobs were? This may be a group of sergeants as they are seated outside the Sergeants Mess.
Dad is seated left in the middle row, George Coe is in the middle of the middle row, and A. Mason ("Mago") is centre back.

On the rough building behind dad are 2 signs:-
  • B   Sgts Mess
  • Holiday Inn
operation torch WW2 59th HAA RA Essex Regiment




Sergeant Davis in Italy 1945, at the age of 23


This photo was posted back to mum.
On the back dad wrote:-
Rome May 1945

all my love darling.

your Own Dearest Husband
{followed by 15 kisses}

operation torch WW2 59th HAA RA Essex Regiment







Dad is wearing gloves in this photo taken in January 1946, so initially I thought he was back in England.
I now know her was still in northern Italy with the Venezia Giulia Police Force (78th Regiment 700th BTY RA Auxiliary Police, CMF).












post cards


Dad sent a few post cards from North Africa and Italy.

Post cards North Africa 1943 WW2

He wrote on the back:-

Do not take too much notice of this card dearest, as I have not rode a camel yet.





A typical camp of how the natives live, some far worse.
Yes darling this card makes it look as though they are living in palaces. Above all it would be quite that number in one shack as we call them.


How about the idea for our bungalow darling?




I think dad also bought back quite a few cards and photos from/of Italy and North Africa just as souvenirs. Most were black & white, but he also had a collection of 6 coloured cartoon style post cards from Rome in a paper wrap;

"English Soldiers in Rome" post card series 1945 WW2


The artist didn't have a clear idea of the Union Jack flag, and probably couldn't work out why some "English" soldiers wore skirts!

Written on the back of each card is a location and short description.


card #1English Soldiers Rome colour post cards WW2 card #2


#1. Canada Club; "Tactful methods of approach"
#2. The Roman Forum; "The Red Cross at work"


card #3English Soldiers Rome colour post cards World War 2 card #4


#3. Piazza Di Spana; "Look out for the shops"
#4. The Vatican City; "The Bronze Door"


that's entertainment


Here is a very curious booklet, originally held together with a single staple.

Onwards Christian Soldiers Conrades of the Other Side WW2

This strange booklet is simply described as:-

 "A Collection of Poems By British Soldiers for British Soldiers. Selected, Illustrated and Printed by "Comrades of the Other Side".

Some of the poems are dark, like this one, which goes with the cover illustration;

Onwards Christian Soldiers Conrades of the Other Side WW2

Some are amusing;

Onwards Christian Soldiers Conrades of the Other Side WW2

Some are political;

Onwards Christian Soldiers Conrades of the Other Side WW2


...and a couple are probably no longer acceptable.

Thanks to someone called "Lee" on the website: ww2talk I now know that this was German propaganda.

To quote Lee:-
It is a German propaganda pamphlet produced in January 1945 by the SS-Standarte Kurt Eggers Division, specifically the Südstern section - Southern Star.



Dad also brought back a program from the Vaudeville Theatre in Rome

Vaudeville Theatre Rome programme from World War 2



Note: the left panel (in the top illustration) should read: ARMY WELFARE SERVICES





<<BACK  HOME  NEXT>>