|6 Airborne Div: report on operations, 1944 June
|Extracts from report on operations, 6 Airborne Division
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No mortars, no special stores; no RE or Fd Amb personnel and no mine detectors. The gliderborne element had failed to arrive; and whilst on route to the bty posh it was ascertained that the preliminary hy bomber attack on the bty had completely missed its objective.
In spite of these handicaps the Bn penetrated the minefds and outer wire defs of the bty in the face of hy fire, and finally assaulted and overran the bty posn. At the close of this action the Bnstr had been. reduced to 80, and 22 PW had been captured.
Subsequently on approaching LE PLEIN 1275 this feature was found to be strongly held by the enemy. The Bn was too weak to evict them, and. it accordingly est itself on the outskirts of HAUGER 1375. This posn being maintained. until the arrival of 1 SS Bde on the afternoon of 7 Jun.
(b) 1 Cdn Para Bn
This Bn was allotted the primary tasks of destroying the Brs at VARAVILLE 1875 and ROBEHOMME 1873. Thereafter to assist in forming the brhead in the area BOIS DE BAVENT 1471.
In this case also the drop was over a wide area. However the enemy offered little opposition to performance of the primary tasks which were successfully carried out. The Bn then reverted to Bde control and occupied a posn in the area LE MESNIL 1372.
(c) 8 Para Bn
The primary tasks allotted to this Bn were the destruction of two brs at BURES 1769 and one EAST of TROARN 1667. Subsequently to assist in forming the brheed by occupying the area about X rds 140703.
As a result of a scattered drop the RE dets became separated and could not reach the Bn RV in time , and therefore proceeded direct to the objectives independently.
At BURES the RE det linked up with adv elements of 8 Para Bn, no enemy were encountered, and both brs were successfully blown.
At TROARN the leading elements of 8 Para Bn encountered opposition on the NORTHERN outskirts of the town. The RE det, mounted in a jeep and trailer, heard this action in progress as they approach- ed THOARN from the WEST. They decided to try and rush through the town, and in this they succeeded, although heavily fired on. They reached and blew a gap in the bridge successfully. This gap was subsequently widened by 8 Para Bn later in the day.
In the evening the Bn moved to its posn in the brhead which it occupied according to plan.
Div HQ landed at 0355 hrs, and moved to LE BAS DE RANVILLE area. Contact with HQ 5 Para Bde was est at 0500 hrs and with 3 Para Bde at 1235 hrs.
Enemy pressure gradually increased during the morning, culminating in the attack on RANVILLE at 1300 hrs. However by 1353 hrs 1 SS Bde had crossed the brs and come under comd 6 Airborne Div, and the situation was in hand.
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