This was an XII Corps Engagement, involving the 7th Armoured Division, 43rd Division, 52nd Division, 6th Guards Tank Brigade, and 1st Commando Brigade. The clearance of this area brought the 21st Army Group to the Roer-Maas line, with only the Rhineland between them and the Rhine. In places, the Germans fought fiercely, but some of their here were not of high quality.

The Honour was emblazoned by the 8th Hussars.


The German offensive through the Ardennes was designed to reach Antwerp and divide the US 1st Army from the British 2nd Army, which had started on 16th December caused some disruption to the Allied plans before it was overcome.

In early 1945 during Operation ‘Blackcock’, to clear the country to the River Roer, the Regiment found themselves in a fierce battle for the village of St Joost.

In company with the Motor battalion, field guns, flame-throwing Crocodiles and an Infantry Brigade which accepted many casualties, it took two days to clear, losing several tanks in the process.

A few days later the small town of Linne was liberated following a unique charge across snow-covered fields by ‘C’ Squadron, commanded by Major Huth, carrying 10 Commandos on the back of each tank. By 26th January the whole area to the Roer had been cleared.

For some weeks there followed an un-warlike calm. Back in Maeseyck for the second time and issue, one per troop, with a new tank the Challenger, carrying a 17pdr gun, the Regiment rested, re-organised and fired their new equipment on ranges nearby.

Related topics

  1. A short history of The 8th Hussars
  2. North West Europe 1944-45 timeline
  3. M3 Stuart ‘Honey’ tank
  4. M24 Chaffee tank
  5. Sherman Firefly tank
  6. Cromwell tank
  7. A30 Challenger tank
  8. Maj C Goulburn DSO