Gueritz, Edward Findlay (Oral history)

Catalogue number
  • 17394
Department
Sound
Production date
1997-05-06
Subject period
Dimensions
  • whole: Duration 130, Number Of Items 5
Alternative names
  • object name: Oral history
  • object category: IWM interview
Creator
Category
sound

© IWM

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Object description

British midshipman served aboard HMS Mashona in GB coastal waters, 1939; officer served aboard HMS Cumberland in Atlantic, 1939; served on shore duties with Royal Navy in GB, 1940; served aboard HMS Jersey in GB coastal waters, English Channel and Mediterranean, 1940-1941, including sinking at Malta, 2/5/1941; served aboard HMS London in Mediterranean and Atlantic, 1941; served with Combined Operations in GB and during Madagascar invasion, 1941-1944; served as beachmaster with Fox Beach Landing Group, Royal Naval Commandos, Force S, Combined Operations during Normandy landings, 1944

Content description

REEL 1 Background in Woburn Sands, GB, 1919-1937: family; education; background to joining Royal Navy. Recollections of operations as officer aboard HMS Cumberland in South Atlantic, 1939: drafting to ship, 7/1939; fatigue under wartime conditions; morale aboard ship; role of ship during hunt for Graf Spee, 12/1939; first news of Graf Spee's scuttling; echo of signal sent by Graf Spee whilst hunting German U-boat supply ship aboard HMS London in Caribbean, 1941; return to GB aboard HMS Ajax, 2/1940; issue of lifebelts, after 12/1939. Aspects of period as midshipman aboard HMS Mashona in GB coastal waters, 1939: memories of sinking of submarine HMS Thetis off Liverpool; visit to French warship Montcalm in River Clyde; question of Royal Navy French Navy relationships. Period as officer in construction of anti-invasion defences in GB, 1940: constructing defences in Portsdown Hill area, near Portsmouth, 5/1940-6/1940; work in the Hull area. Recollections of operations as officer aboard HMS Jersey in GB coastal waters, English Channel and Mediterranean, 1940-1941 including sinking, 2/5/1941: drafting to ship, 9/1940; rescue of motor cruiser sunk by acoustic mine; encounter with German destroyers in English Channel. REEL 2 Continues: German Air Force raids on Plymouth; bombarding Genoa with Force H in Mediterranean; escorting HMS Resolution to GB, late 1940; German Air Forces raids on Portsmouth, 3/1941; move to Malta, 1941; sinking of ship on mine at Malta, 2/5/1941; process of cleaning off oil after sinking. Aspects of operations as officer aboard HMS London in Mediterranean and Atlantic, 1941: taking passage in ship; crowded conditions on board with survivors and POWs; memories of Lord Louis Mountbatten. Recollections of operations as beachmaster with Combined Operations in GB, during Madagascar invasion, 1941-1944: joining Combined Operations, 8/1941; examples of Lord Louis Mountbatten's memory. REEL 3 Continues: memories of Colonel R C Hill of 2nd Bn Coldstream Guards; start of service at Inverary, 8/1941; character of exercise at Scapa Flow, 1941; training at Loch Fyne, autumn 1941; role in planning invasion of Madagascar winter 1941-1942; landings at Diego Suarez, 3/1942; hospitalisation on contracting stomach disorder; appointment as staff officer to Commander of Support Group, Force S during preparations for D-Day, 11/1943; his appointment as principal beachmaster for Fox Royal Navy Commando of Force S for Normandy landings, 3/1944; importance of right mixture of personnel on landing craft; logistical preparations for D-Day, spring 1944. REEL 4 Continues: sense of national discipline over security measures preceding Normandy landings. Recollections of operations as beachmaster with Fox Beach Landing Group, Royal Naval Commandoes, Force S, Combined Operations during Normandy landings, 1944: Channel crossing, 6/6/1944; character of landing on Sword Beach, D-Day, 6/6/1944; meaning of term Force S; question of attitude of members of 50th Div; tasks of Beach Landing Groups and Royal Navy Commandoes during landings; problems clearing vehicles off Sword Beach, D-Day, 6/6/1944; accidental friendly fire incident on beach; personal morale amongst troops landing on beach; his attitude to taking part in landings; shooting down of German aircraft that had scattered butterfly bombs on beach; character of night time Allied smokescreen; effect of great storm on Sword Beach, 6/1944; German shelling of Sword Beach, 6/1944. REEL 5 Continues: circumstances in which he was wounded on Sword Beach, 26/6/1944; evacuation by LST from Arromanches to Portsmouth; recovery from wounds; different role of Fox and Roger Beach Landing Groups on Sword Beach, D-Day, 6/6/1944; casualties amongst beach landing groups.

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