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D-Day Countdown Diary 1943

July 1943 | August 1943 | September 1943 | October 1943 | November 1943 | December 1943

Initially a mixture of general happenings in the war and D-Day preparations (marked with )

December 1943

8 December 1943 VIIIth Hussars arrive in UK from Italy
12 December 1943 Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry arrive in UK from Italy
24 December 1943 General Dwight D Eisenhower appointed Supreme Commander Allied Expeditionary Force
December 1943 mass production of Mulberry Harbour components gets under way
December 1943 Major General 'Pip' Roberts takes command of 11th Armoured Division.
December 1943 Major General Nigel Duncan appointed to command 30th Armoured Brigade
December 1943 13th/18th Hussars engaged in DD tank trials in the Solent
December 1943 Lieutenant General Walter Bedell Smith appointed Chief of Staff Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force
December 1943 General Sir Bernard Montgomery nominated Commander-in-Chief 21st Army Group

November 1943

1 November 1943 US Troops land at Bougainville in the Solomon Islands.
9 November 1943 General Charles de Gaulle appointed Free French President.
15 November 1943 Air Chief Marshal Sir Trafford Leigh-Mallory appointed Commander-in-Chief, Allied Expeditionary Air Force.
20 November 1943 American troops land on the Gilbert Islands.
28 November 1943 First meeting of the Teheran Conference; Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin.
November 1943 Field Marshal Erwin Rommel appointed by OKW to study the defences of vulnerable coasts in Europe.
November 1943 Inhabitants of Tyneham village, Dorset, evicted to expand Tank Gunnery Ranges.
November 1943 30th Armoured Brigade, equipped with Flail tanks, transferred to 79th Armoured Division.

October 1943.

13 October 1943 Lord Louis Mountbatten transferred from Combined Operations HQ to South East Asia Command.
15 October 1943 Codename Mulberry adopted for artificial harbour project.
15 October 1943 27th Armoured Brigade (DD tanks) leaves 79th Armoured Division to became an independent armoured brigade attached to 3rd Infantry Division.
22 October 1943 Major-General Robert Laycock appointed Chief of Combined Operations.
28 October 1943 Landing Ship Tank (LST) number 30, the first of her class to arrive at Landing Craft and Bases Command, Falmouth, from the USA gives a demonstration of launching an LCT (Landing Craft Tank) from her deck.
October 1943 US Navy establishes the Amphibious Training Centre at Falmouth, Cornwall.
October 1943 formation of 1st Assault Brigade, Royal Engineers.
October 1943 RAF Tarrant Rushton, Dorset, receives its first Glider Tug Squadrons.

September 1943

3 September 1943. British forces land at Reggio di Calabria, Italy.
3 September 1943. Anglo-US Team commence work on the Mulberry harbour project.
8 September 1943. Surrender of all Italian forces announced.
9 September 1943. Allied forces land at Salerno.
September 1943. Great Panjandrum explosive device tested at Bovington Camp.
September 1943. United States navy Supply Base established on Exeter Golf Course.
September 1943 United States 2nd Armored Division in Sicily warned for move to Britain and Invasion role.

August 1943

1 August 1943. Torpedo Boat PT109, John F. Kennedy commanding, sunk in action, Solomon Islands.
1 August 1943. Algiers General Charles de Gaulle succeeds General Giraud as President of the National Defence Committee (Free French).
3 August 1943 Polish cryptanalysts break the German Enigma code.
3 August 1943. RAF bombers destroy seven square miles of the city of Hamburg.
4 August 1943. Exercise Hedgehog; 1st Armoured Assault Regiment, Royal Engineers test minesweeping Flail Tanks.
11 August 1943. 'Quadrant' Conference at Quebec. Prime Minister Churchill, President Roosevelt and the Chiefs of Staff discuss 'Operation Overlord'.
17 August 1943. Victory in Sicily.
20 August 1943. 13th/18th Hussars visit Linney Head in South Wales for firing trials.
20 August 1943. Rosneate, Scotland re-activated as an Amphibious Training Center for the United States Navy.
22 August 1943. PrototypeV1 missile found and examined on Bornholm Island, Denmark.

July 1943

4 July; General Wladyslaw Sikorski, Polish Premier in exile and Commander-in-Chief of free Polish forces, killed in an air crash at Gibraltar.
9 July; Operation Citadel, start of the Battle of Kursk, greatest tank battle of WWII.
10 July; Operation Husky, allied invasion of Sicily.
25 July; Benito Mussolini dismissed from office by King Victor Emmanuel III.
29 July; Minister of Labour Ernest Bevin directs women to factory work instead of armed forces.
31 July; Operation Gomorrah, massive RAF raid on Hamburg.

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