8th (Midlands) Parachute Battalion

8th (Midlands) Parachute Battalion

The 8th (Midlands) Parachute Battalion was formed from the 13th Battalion The Royal Warwickshire Regiment in November 1942 and became part of the 3rd Parachute Brigade of the newly formed 6th Airborne Division in 1943.

The Battalion jumped at D-Day on 6th June 1944 and was tasked to destroy bridges across the Dives River. It fought in Normandy until the break-out to the Seine in August and again in the Ardennes during the winter of 1944-5. In March 1945 the Battalion parachuted as part of the Rhine Crossings and participated in the subsequent advance across Germany to the Baltic.

After the war it served with the 6th Airborne Division in Palestine until the disbandment of the 3rd Parachute Brigade, when it was amalgamated with the 9th Parachute Battalion in January 1948 to form the 8th/9th Parachute Battalion.

Commanding Officers:

1943            Lt Col Hildersly
1943-4        Lt Col AS Pearson, DSO, MC
1944-7        Lt Col G Hewetson, DSO
1946-8        Lt Col JHM Hackett, DSO

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Group photos_29

Letters and Cards_4

Personal accounts_5

Documents_8

  • Programme for 'D Day Dinner and Social Evening' held at 8th Battalion Sgts' Mess  Camp 148 Haifa MELF 6 June 1947.

    Programme for 'D Day Dinner and Social Evening' held at 8th Battalion Sgts' Mess Camp 148 Haifa MELF 6 June 1947.

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  • 8th (Midlands) Parachute Battalion note paper, 1943.

    8th (Midlands) Parachute Battalion note paper, 1943.

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  • Report on attachment to 295 Sqn RAF during an exercise, March 1943.

    Report on attachment to 295 Sqn RAF during an exercise, March 1943.

    1 Item

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Medal Citations_8

Cartoons_1

Newspaper extracts_1

Official accounts_1

Official documents_2

Latest Comments

Callum McNab said:
Pte. Stimson (listed as missing on the Varsity chalk) was my grandad. He was machine gunned through the stomach while they were dropping. He was taken prisoner and operated on by a German surgeon on a kitchen table. He was taken back by the Allies when the Germans retreated and left their PoWs behind. He recovered, and in his 70s would still have tiny bits of shrapnel come out of his skin. He lived a good life. Through a Para association initiative, he met and became friends with a number of German paras after the war.
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