Tuesday, April 10, 2007
The Royal Dragoons scouting for the 4th Armoured Brigade
On 15 December 1941, when the 4th Armoured Brigade was heading north, they had the Royal Dragoons ("The Royals") scouting for them. The Royals ran onto soft, swampy ground and were stuck. While they were stuck, the Germans were shelling them. The passed them and drove 32 miles in four hours. They reached Bir Halegh Eleba by 3pm. The 4th Armoured Brigade formed a square with the 3rd RTR facing north, the 5th RTR facing east, the Royal Gloucester Hussars facing west, and the Tower Hamlet Rifles facing south. They had armorued cars and Bren carriers on the corners of the square. The Tower Hamlet Rifles were new to the 4th Armoured Brigade. Robert had not seen them before. The 4th Armoured Brigade was sitting to the west of the Axis forces. They saw "a single German reconnaissance plane" overhead, which made one pass and then headed to the north "in a great hurry". This is based on the account in Robert Crisp's book Brazen Chariots.