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Summary: The first of many towns to fall to 30th Corps during its advance eastwards through Normandy, Vassy - deserted and partially demolished - is taken by 11th Armoured Division's 159th Infantry Brigade Group.
Description: Two tank crewmen pass 75mm shells to the commander of a 3rd RTR Sherman tank re-ammunitioning in its harbour somewhere between Estry and Le Thiel some fourteen kilometres east of Vire. In Vassy, which was taken without a fight by the 4th Battalion King's Shropshire Light Infantry, an armoured bulldozer clears a street filled with debris and masonry fallen from buildings destroyed by British artillery fire. German unit direction signs bearing the names of infantry unit commanders and Panzer unit emblems (including the 'Panzer Lehr' emblem ?) point the way westward along the N812 to the sector of the Normandy front opposite the Americans. A 2nd Northamptonshire Yeomanry Cromwell tank rumbles through the deserted town.
Production Details: Directorate of Public Relations, War Office (Production sponsor)
Army Film and Photographic Unit (Production company)
Grant, Ian James1917-04-16Family origin: Edinburgh, Scotland (Production individual)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: British Army, Royal Tank Regiment, 3rd Battalion (regiment/service)
British Army, Yeomanry, Northamptonshire, 2 (regiment/service)
British Army, Shropshire Light Infantry, King's, 4th Battalion (regiment/service)
British Army, Bde 159 Gp (regiment/service)
British Army, Royal Engineers (regiment/service)
British Army, Div, Armoured, 11 (regiment/service)
Keywords: armour, United States - tank: M4 Sherman & [British] (object name)
armour, British - tank: Cromwell (object name)
transport, Allied military - engineering: bulldozer [armoured] (object name)
destruction, French military - aimed: artillery (object name)
signs, military and civilian (object name)
operations, British military - preparation: reammunitioning of vehicles (object name)
Vassy, Calvados, France (geography)
Calvados, France (geography)
Normandy, France (geography)
Notes: Note: See with A70 127-1, 127-2, 129-1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 16, 130-1, 2, 3 and 6, and 132-3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 for footage showing the 11th Armoured Division advancing eastward towards the Seine. The Northamptonshire Yeomanry, the 11th Armoured Division's armoured reconnaissance regiment was withdrawn from service after August 12th, having suffered heavy casualties.
Remarks: Good footage. Best seen with items listed above.
Documentation/associated material: read 'The 1st and 2nd Northamptonshire Yeomanry 1939-1946' by BAOR, 'Taurus Pursuant : The History of the 11th Armoured Division' by BAOR and 'La Charge du Taureau' by Jean Brisset (in French).