WWII, 1st Army

Discussion in 'Sappers' started by happysapper, Nov 17, 2003.

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  1. I've just found out that during WW2, my grandfather was in Africa with the 1st Army, whilst serving in the engineers. Does anyone out there know what the sappers got up to with the 1st Army, as everything i find is related to the 8th Army. Anyone know of any decent websites???

  2. Pretty much what I got up to in Europe I guess .A bit of action.. mine clearing and laying...... Lead off assault. sweep the verges for mines..You name it We did it. Deep patrols into enemy territory. Sappers the same where ever they got to. Win medals, suffer casualties, the same old stuff.... But a great mob!
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  3. My Granddad was there too, he survived a mine blast and was one of three who survived in the lorry they were travelling in.
    No info further than that but would be interested to know what you find.
    He never talked about it once to me.
  4. Your best bet is to find out his actual unit then apply to the National Archives in Kew Gardens to view the units war diaries. My Grandfather was also with 1st Army he was KIA in Tunisia a few days before rhe fighting ended. 1st Army took part in the Torch Landings a joint Op with the Yanks. and fought all the way from Morrocco to Tunis .
  5. Books on the campaign if you are interested:

    An Army at Dawn - Rick Atkinson
    Together We Stand - James Holland

    Neither is Sapper-specific but both are good accounts of First Army's war.
  6. One thing is for sure. It is of times long past. The Sappers would have seen a lot of action......Typical, is that amongst some platoons there was not one man that had not been wounded. There was also the knowledge that the Sappers won more gallantry medals than any other regiment or Corps, and with less men. Sadly I am pretty much all that is left of those once Gallant Sappers.. My mob was 246 Field Coy RE. Eighth brigade Third British Infantry Div "Monty's Iron sides"
    A very long time ago.....
  7. Can highly recommend looking no further than 'WorldWar2Talk' website. I was quoted over £1000 to get WO (War Office) files from The National Archives (TNA) - there are real experts on there who will get them for £10s! Not to mention some real 1st Army veterans in particular and Sapper veterans in general.
    My father was RE with 8th Army and I need look no further than this website for anything WW2 related. Has to be said that Arrse has better looking totty though - unless Vera Lynn does it for you.