59th (Staffordshire) Division 1939-1944

Units, etc

Photos and documents relating to 59 Div units and individuals.

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Progress of 59th Division in France

Division Progress

[Christine Mackenzie/2009]

7 South Staffordshires War Diaries

June 1944 | July 1944 | August 1944
From the Public Records Office. [Dave Coles/2002]

59th Recce, John Robert Beeston

JR Beeston, 59 Recce

Courtesy of Janet Wobey/2009 (daughter of JRB), who notes the following:

Photo is from the Imperial War Museum website, although there is a copy of the photo in the family. Description given on IWM website is "motorcyclists of 59th Battalion, Reconnaissance Corps at Ballykinlar in Northern Ireland, 6th Dec 1941" ... my father in the front of the row of motor cyclists. It appeared in the News of the World newspaper sometime after the war and I believe JRB got a copy of the photo from the newspaper.

From two books on Recce Corps — The British Reconnaissance Corps in World War II and Only the Enemy in Front - the Recce corps at War 1940-1946 (both by Richard Doherty) — it seems little true reconnaissance work was possible in the early days of the Normandy invasion and Recce Corps personnel were called upon to fulfill other roles. It also seems that when true reconnaissance work did become possible, the 59th Recce were critical of the infantry battalions they were working with — said they didn't understand the role of the Recce Corps. Ascribed as being due to wholesale replacements for high casualties in the offensive.

241 Battery, 61 Field Regiment, RA

61 Fld Regt RA
May 1945, Groenlo, Holland. 241 Battery was converted to a super heavy artillery battery after the break-up of 59 Division. They are still wearing the 59 Division pit-head shoulder flash. [Ian Porter/2005]

242 Battery, 61 Field Regiment, RA

61 Fld Regt RA
[Darrin Davies/2005]

Band, 6 North Staffordshires

Band of 6 North Staffs
Taken in the early years of the war when the battalion was still under canvas. Pte. W.E.P. Simpson is at the bass drum. [Les Simpson/2006]

C Company, 1/6 South Staffordshires

C Coy 1/6 S Staffs
Taken in 1942 when 59 Division was stationed in Northern Ireland. [Erin Anne Beirne/2005]

1/6 South Staffordshires

1/6 S Staffs
On the beach at Dunkirk eight members of 1/6 South Staffords await evacuation. The French officer in the picture is probably an interpreter. [BBC Where I Live: Stoke and Staffordshire] Website visitor Christine Page emailed in April 2006 to note that her father, Private Edward Matthews, is second from the right (with cigarette).

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http://59div.morssweb.com/?units - August 11, 2011
original text and graphics copyright © 2022 Robert Morss