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MITCHELL P D Lt


Of Evesham on 20 November 2008. He received a National Service commission with The Sherwood Foresters and served with the 2nd Battalion in 1952 and 1953.


MORLEy Ron Sgt


Of Nuneaton in May 2008. He served in The South Staffordshire Regiment.


NEWTON Harold Pte 4978230 Of Boythorpe, Chesterfield, in January 2008 aged 89. He was called up in September 1939 and served with the 1st, 2nd and 12th Battalions The Sherwood Foresters before being transferred to The Yorkshire Dragoons in August 1942 and subsequently to 9 KOYLI in December 1942 with which he served until the end of the War.


NEWTON Michael Capt 443523


with 8th Battalion The Sherwood Foresters in the Norway Campaign of 1940. After the defeat of the British Forces, he escaped into Sweden and was interned in the camp at Falun. Following repatriation, he was posted to the RASC and served with HQ 15 (Scottish) Infantry Division. He was discharged in January 1946 when he became an excavator driver with the Butterley Brick Company. Later, he worked for Gloworm Boilers in Belper until his retirement in 1983.


O’BALLANCE Edgar “Paddy” Col 225963


became the battalion PT instructor, being proficient at all sports except football as it was the best way of avoiding guard duty. In 1940, his Battalion (2nd/5th) joined The British Expeditionary Force in France but, shortly afterwards, he was promoted Sergeant and posted to 7th Battalion The Gold Coast Regiment, Royal West African Field Force, September 1940: he attended the Platoon Commander’s Course in Nigeria in 1941 and was commissioned on 18 January 1942, serving as Intelligence Officer with the 5th Brigade of the 81st (West African) Division in Burma 1943/44. His saw war service in France, West Africa, Burma and India where he commanded 2nd Battalion The Green Howards for a short time. He ended his war service in the acting rank of Colonel as AAQMG for the Meerut District in India.


Of Bristol on 9 February 2009 aged 73. Born in Bristol on 11 September 1935 and educated at Kingswood School, Bath, he enlisted into The Devon and Cornwall Light Infantry at Taunton on 10 December 1953. He attended Sandhurst from February 1954 to August 1955 when he was commissioned into The Worcestershire Regiment. He was posted to the 1st Battalion in Iserlohn and then British Guiana, Jamaica, Nassau, Jamaica and back to Norton Barracks. After a tour at the Depot, Lichfield, he was posted to The Royal Sierra Leone Regiment before returning, in November 1963 to 1st Battalion The Worcestershire Regiment as MTO. His maternal grandfather served in the ranks at Gallipoli and his elder brother served with The Lincolnshire Regiment. He retired in December 1964. Military and Political History was his main hobby, he was a case worker for SSAFA and he was a Prison Visitor at Horfield Prison, Bristol. After the Army, he was a retail representative for Shellmex and BP Ltd and, later, Shell UK Oil Ltd. When he retired from that, he became a self-employed Licensee of King William Filling Station, Bristol.


OAKLEy James Pte 4978659


Of Belper, Derbyshire, on 28 July 2008 aged 89. He enlisted in 1939 and served


The Mercian Eagle


Of Wakebridge, Derbyshire, on 8 July 2009 aged 90. Born on 17 July 1918 in Dalkey, a fashionable suburb of Dublin, he was educated in a variety of schools including Nottingham Boys’ High School. He joined 16th/5th Queen’s Royal Lancers in Nottingham in January 1935 as Trooper 317797 only to be discharged after 38 days’ service when his mother turned up and said that he was only 16 years old. On 18th December 1935, he managed to enlist as Pte 4974618 into The Sherwood Foresters; he came top of his recruit course and became the Depot boxing champion. It is reputed that he was banned from Goose Fair as he used to supplement his army pay by beating the prize fighters in the boxing rings. He


By 1947, he was back as a Captain and MTO of The Lincolnshire Regiment serving in Palestine. Still under 30 and with a successful war behind him, he realised that he had little hope for advancement in the peacetime regular army: he had been commissioned from the ranks and had not attended Sandhurst or Staff College so, at the end of 1948, he left the army with the intention of becoming a journalist and writer. He joined the United States Correspondents’ Team which enabled him to make trips to the Far East, including Korea, China and Indo China during the Korean War. These trips provided him with the background information for much of his later writings. He joined the British Transport Police and, in 1953, he was commissioned into 8th Battalion The Sherwood Foresters (V) serving in various appointments until 1968. His first book, The Arab-Israeli War 1948, was published by Faber and Faber in 1956: his books are currently on the reading lists for some courses at many universities. Of the score of books written by O’Ballance, including accounts of the Malayan emergency, the Greek Civil War of 1944-49, the Korean War and the first Gulf War, two stand out: The Secret War in the Sudan (Faber, 1977) and The Afghan Wars 1839-1992 (Brassey’s, 1993). The importance of this earlier Sudan conflict was the revelation of the extent to which a black African people could challenge a stronger Arab one, inspiring, with dire results, the people of Darfur. Even a cursory examination of his account of the Anglo- Afghan Wars of 1839-42, 1878-81 and 1919 and the Soviet invasion and occupation of 1979-89 could leave no one in doubt of the certain hazards of any forceful intervention in Afghanistan. He then secured a post as a writer with MOD, later becoming the Army Public Relations Officer in Colchester. Later, he became editor of the British Army News Service before taking up his last appointment as Army Public Relations Officer in Nottingham. He retired from the Civil Service in 1978 and settled in Wakebridge, Derbyshire.


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