Robert William Friend 6458484 1/7 Royal Fusilers

1 Battalion 7th Foot (City of London Regiment) Royal Fusiliers
Army Record of Service for 25 Yrs 289 days before colours

War Diaries Jan - June 1944




Appendix Pages/Location


Sandown I.o.W
47th Infantry carries out Exercise Brasso the move of  Brigade to West Hartlepool as part of NORCO.
West Hartlepool County Durham



West Hartlepool
Exercise Eagle 10 - 22.
The documentation for war is complex as per the documentation enclosed. You can only take 25 overseas when going to war!


West Hartlepool
Little activity and on 23rd Bn moves to Romsey, Hants
A large number of men have been transferred from Bn to other units in readiness for D Day

Now at Romsey Southampton

APR below

Now at Hursley, Winchester administering D-Day marshalling area C, while a rear party is still at Hartlepool
Bob marries Marie Cox on 29th April 1943
 He puts Queens Royal as his Bn on  marriage certificate and his service confirms he was transferred to 1/6 Queens on 17/4/'44 when 11 Bn RF was being reduced.
Now at King's Lynn with 1/6 Queens, convenient to guard the Kings Summer holiday home at Sandringham!
SHUDDER practiced then exercise X-RAY


King's Lynn
Move to Brentwood pre marshalling area Camp 55 at beginning of month. Vehicle water proofing undertaken so they could be moved to their area by month end.


Issued 2 days rations to cover them after landing on French soil they embarked onto M.T. 25 at Tilbury Docks then sailed to Southend to join convoy fpr Normandy.
Reported details of actions on the day Rommel wounded Bob Friend at Battle of Villers-Bocage

War Diary of 1/6 Queens for the month. Its gives a cold account of war.
The Bn failed its objectives of cutting through enemy gap and reaching Caen##2. The Bde CO was relieved and Bn replaced in the line and pulled back to Bayeux.
Luxury of modern war - on 2nd July they had a film show in camp at Bayeux!! BTW Lt FW Holder is Bn IO.


Interesting to read the bare facts of Bn's fighting during July as they follow up Armoured brigades battles that secure Caen. See the map of their marchings.
Bob is treated by 2 LFA on 9/06 and admitted to 35 F.D.S on 27th June and on 29 June is at Park Prewett Hosp, Basingstoke. He is posted to Y list


Posted to 13th Holding Bn "HQ" Coy. See Home page for the work he did in 1945 - 1947. On 15/2/47 (his birthday and enlistment to regiment as a man in 1939) transferred back to Royal Fusiliers.


"Always a Fusilier"
  • 47th (London) Infantry Division

    • 11 Bn Royal Fusiliers

    • 12 Bn Royal Fusiliers

    • and more - see here and here

  • 131 Infantry Division [Battle of France]

    • 1/5 Queens

    • 1/6 Queens

    • 1/7 Queens

    • 2 Bn Devonshire

    • 9th Bn Durham Light Infantry see here

JAN Meat rationing ends in Australia. Battle of Monte Cassino starts. The 2 year siege of Leningrad lifted. US invade Marshall Islands
FEB Marshall Islands captured. Big Week bombing of German Industry. Operation Brewer opens in Pacific.
MAR Vesuvius erupts. Great Escape from Stalag Luft III
APR Japs launch Operation Ichi_Go. Bob is transferred to 1/6 Queens because 11 Bn Royal Fusiliers is winding down.
MAY Soviets liberate Crimea. Allies occupy Monte Cassino
JUN D-Day. 155,000 troops landed on beaches of Normandy
On 13th June Bob is badly injured during Battle of Villier-Bocage and by months end is hospitalised at Basingstoke, UK
D-Day - by 30th over 850,000 men, 148,000 vehicles and 570,000 tons of supplies have been landed. An incredible logistics feat considering NO computers to aid the task

#1 Removed month weekly training schedules of 1/6 Queens at King's Lynn as these are referenced in diary.
##2 Operation Perch (pincer attack to encircle Caen) failed because of Panzer Tank resistance.  See summary in Operation Goodwood. It took until end of July to win these objectives.
Allied commanders had not been able to exploit their potentially decisive advantages in mobility during June and early July 1944 and the Normandy Bridgehead was becoming extremely congested.