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Title:THE 7TH ARMOURED DIVISION IN ACTION NEAR VILLERS-BOCAGE (PART 1) [Allocated Title]
Film Number:A70 49-4
Summary: A REME unit recover one of the many tanks knocked out during the Desert Rats' unsuccessful attempt to capture Villers-Bocage.
Description: A damaged Sherman tank is towed back to the repair workshops by a 22nd Armoured Brigade REME Ward La France wrecker lorry. In 'bocage' country near Briquessard (?), a Cromwell tank from the 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars' 'A' Squadron that has been hit in its turret and has shed one of its tracks is restored to running order by members of the Squadron's REME recovery team; nearby a combined 17-pounder gun and infantry detachment from the 65th (Norfolk Yeomanry) Anti-Tank Regiment RA and the 1/6th (?) Battalion Queen's Regiment keeps watch on the German lines 800 yards away. After the broken tank track has been successfully repaired, a REME fitter brews a cup of tea while his sergeant adjusts the track tension on the front idler wheel. One of the fitters climbs into the Cromwell's driving position and the repair tools are put away. The sergeant in charge of the REME detachment boards his Cromwell ARV which tows its crippled stablemate away for more permanent repairs.
Production Details: Directorate of Public Relations, War Office (Production sponsor)
Army Film and Photographic Unit (Production company)
Carpenter, L (Production individual)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: British Army, Irish Hussars, Royal, Squadron A (regiment/service)
British Army, Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (regiment/service)
British Army, Bde, Armoured, 22 (regiment/service)
British Army, Queen's Regiment, Bn 1/6 (?) (regiment/service)
British Army, Royal Artillery, 65 Anti-Tank Regiment (regiment/service)
Keywords: armour, United States - tank: M4 Sherman & [British] (object name)
armour, British - tank: Cromwell (object name)
armour, British - funnies: Cromwell ARV (object name)
operations, British military - maintenance (object name)
transport, United States - prime mover: Ward La France wrecker & [British] (object name)
society, British military - sustenance: tea (object name)
weapons, British - gun: 17-pounder (object name)
Briquessard, Calvados, France (geography)
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 278 ft; Running time: 3 mins
Notes: Documentation/associated material: for a bibliography, refer to the publications listed in A70 41-3 and 47-7 and read 'History of the Queen's Royal Regiment: Volume 8 1924-1945' by Major Foster and 'Men of Valour: The History of the VIII King's Royal Irish Hussars: Volume 3 1927-1958' by Olivia Fitzroy.
Remarks: good footage, in which the confined nature of the countryside - a particularly unwelcome aspect of the Normandy campaign from the point of view of Desert Rat veterans - is immediately apparent.
Summary: for footage showing 7th Armoured Division in action alongside 50th Division with 30th Corps in June 1944, see A70 33-1 to 4 (which feature 'Desert Rat' units coming alongside on D+1, 47-5 and 49-5 and refer generally to ciné material showing AFV recovery work and maintenance in the field, notably A70 97-1, 121-4 and 122-8 (the last two items featuring 7th Armoured Division).