Shoulder flash Essex Regiment

white on red machine embroided, some residu on back


The 2nd Battalion, Essex Regiment, was originally part of the 25th Infantry Brigade(containing the 1/7th Battalion, Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey) and 1st Battalion, Royal Irish Fusiliers) attached to the 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division and served with the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) in France in 1940. The battalion was evacuated from Dunkirk after the short but fierce Battle of Dunkirk, part of the larger Battle of France.

After Dunkirk the battalion remained with the 25th Brigade until February 1944 when it became part of the 56th Independent Infantry Brigade, alongside the 2nd Battalion, South Wales Borderers and 2nd Battalion, Gloucestershire Regiment, where it was to remain for the rest of the war. The battalion received large drafts of men to bring it up to strength and began training intensively for the Allied invasion of France. The battalion and brigade landed on Gold Beach on D-Day, 6 June 1944, from roughly 1:00 pm and immediately set off inland.

They fought through the Battle for Caen serving again with the 50th Division and briefly with 59th Division. The 56th Infantry Brigade were eventually assigned to the 49th (West Riding) Division, after the 70th Brigade of that division was disbanded due to an Army-wide shortage of trained infantrymen. The battalion and brigade would remain with the 49th Division for the rest of the war, serving mainly with the First Canadian Army. In 1945 they fought in the Second Battle of Arnhem. By the end of the war the 2nd Battalion had suffered over 804 men killed, wounded or missing, with 183 of them paying the ultimate price

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