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Cassino and Anzio in October 2022
In late October 2022 I completed my Italian month by taking a military group , largely comprising Gurkhas , to the battlefields of Monte Cassino and Anzio. We looked at how a Tactical Corps HQ worked at Rocca D'Evandro and how a Main Corps HQ worked at Venafro. We also brewed tea and drank it with rum on the top of Hangman's Hill in memory of the gallant stand of 9th Gurkhas. At Anzio we looked at Corps Expeditionary Operations
Sicily in October 2022
In early October 2022 I started my Italian month by taking a military group , formed around a brigade headquarters to the battlefields of Sicily. We considered the various ways in which the allies arrived in Sicily in 1943 ; including the Malta Brigade landing at Marsamemi , Paddy Mayne's boys at Cape Murro di Porco , the gliders at Ponte Grande and paras at Primosole Bridge. Most scenic problem was the 6th Inniskilling Fusiliers vertical assault at Centuripe
Western Front and Calais in August 2022
In August 2022 I took three Nottinghamshire cousins to the Western Front.
7 members of same extended family were variously killed , wounded or captured. 4 of them were Foresters ; Percy Chamberlin captured with 2nd Battalion at Ennetieres October 1914 , William Parsons killed with 7th Battalion at Gommecourt July 1916 , William Whitby killed at St Christ with 1st Battalion March 1918 and Arthur Ancliffe wounded with 15th Battalion outside Courtrai October 1918. Arthurs son was captured as an AA gunner in Calais in 1940 so we finished there.
Western Front in June 2022
For the first time since it began in 2008 , the Help for Heroes 2022 Big Battlefield Bike ride went from end to end of the Old Front Line. I led a team comprising the late lamented Terry Webb , Andy Johnson and David Harvey , all from the Guild of Battlefield Guides. We guided the fund raising riders to 5-6 battlefields a day on a route that ran Nieuport-Ypres-Arras-Amiens-St Quentin-Compiegne.
Sicily in May 2022
In May 2022 I took three titans of industry to Sicily. We used the story of Operation HUSKY in 1943 to explore issues of leadership , decision making , planning and improvisation. We did not neglect Sicilian culture and spent our afternoons , away from the battlefields , exploring the Greek and Roman legacy around Syracuse , Ragusa and Piazza Armerina
Gallipoli in May 2022
In May 2022 I took a family of three to Gallipoli. The father's great uncle was wounded as an Able Seaman with the Royal Naval Division at Gallipoli in 1915 and killed as a subaltern at Passchedaele in 1917.The mother's great uncle was Clement Attlee . As a Captain in the 6th South Lancashires he commanded the rearguard during the withdrawal from Suvla Bay in December 1915. We explored the heavily trenched summit of Lala Baba hill from where he did that , surviving that operation to be wounded in Mesopotamia and later , become Prime Minister
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