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11th. Royal Scots Fusiliers
(British 49th. Infantry Division)

Scots Fusiliers Glengarry Badge

Scots Fusiliers Embroidered Shouldertitle

R.S.F. Piper's Tartan: the Hunting Erskine.
Before that the 42nd. tartan was used for both pipers and drummers.


These 11th. R.S.F. soldiers are wearing the 49th. division "Polar Bear" badges and some with a grenade-shaped patch of regimental tartan under it,
and a patch of the same tartan under the bonnet badge too.

The 11th. R.S.F. pipers wear kilts, the drummers tartan trews         -     the 11th. R.S.F. troops marching behind the band are all in battledress
Click here to watch a short clip showing the 11th. R.S.F. Pipe Band on the march.

49th (West Riding) Infantry Division

During the Second World war, the division first saw action beginning on 15–17 April 1940 when two of its brigades took part in the short and ill-fated landings in Norway that were intended to retake the ports of Trondheim and Narvik from the Germans. The division withdrew from Norway in May 1940.

The division's 146th Infantry Brigade and 147th Infantry Brigade were thereafter stationed in Iceland. As a result, a new divisional insignia, featuring a Polar Bear standing on an ice floe, was adopted. In 1942, the division was transferred back to the United Kingdom.

Just after D-Day, in June 1944, it moved to Normandy as part of XXX Corps. During the fierce fighting in Normandy, the Nazi propaganda broadcaster Lord Haw-Haw referred to the division as "the Polar Bear Butchers". During the rest of the war, the division was variously under the command of the I Corps, the II Canadian Corps, and the I Canadian Corps. Its last major contribution to the war was the Liberation of Arnhem and the fierce battles that led to it.

R.S.F. Glengarry

Order of Battle 1939 - 1945

49 Reconnaissance Regiment, RAC
228, 229, 230, 294, 756, 757 Field Company, RE
231 & 289 Field Park Company, RE
23 Bridging Platoon, RE
49 Divisional Signals, RSC
69, 70, 71, 74, 79, 80, 143, 178, 185 Field Regiment, RA
55, 58, 88 Anti-Tank Regiment, RA
89, 118 Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment, RA
2nd Battalion, The Kensington Regiment (M.G.)
49 Royal army Service Corps ( R.A.S.C )

146th Infantry Brigade(1939–1945)
4th Battalion The Lincolnshire Regiment
1/4th Battalion Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry
The Hallamshire Battalion The York and Lancaster Regiment

147th Infantry Brigade(1939–1945)
1/5th Battalion The West Yorkshire Regiment
1/6th Battalion The Duke of Wellington's Regiment
1/7th Battalion The Duke of Wellington's Regiment
11th Battalion The Royal Scots Fusiliers
1st Battalion The Leicestershire Regiment

148th Infantry Brigade(1939-Apr 1940)
1/5th Battalion The Leicestershire Regiment
1/5th Battalion The Sherwood Foresters
8th Battalion Sherwood Foresters
2nd Battalion The South Wales Borderers

70th Infantry Brigade(May 1942-Aug 1944)
10th Bn. Durham Light Infantry
11th Bn. Durham Light Infantry
1st Bn. The Tyneside Scottish

56th Infantry Brigade(Aug 1944-1945)
2nd Battalion, The Essex Regiment
2nd Battalion, The Gloucestershire Regiment
2nd Battalion, The South Wales Borderers

The final phase of the 11th.R.S.F. history in Holland, 1944-1946, is described in their Regimental History on page 319-321:

THE 11TH BN IN HOLLAND, I944,-I946, p.319

11TH BATTALION: Goodbye to "The Island"

The operation of clearing the Germans out of the eastern end of The Island began on April 1. The Fusiliers moved to a concentration area in Lent. The Battalion record states: " At long last it seemed that we were to be rid of this depressing area which, through no choice of ours, had been our hunting ground for four months.       The attack went in at 6 a.m. on April 2, the Duke of Wellington's Regiment forcing the initial bridgehead. At zero hour we employed an artillery rocket projector which laid a mattress Of 360 rockets each with the equivalent explosive charge of a 5-5-inch shell. The Battalion broke through at about 10 a.m., 'B' and ` C ' Companies securing the flank, 'A' and' D ' Companies going through to the final objectives. Relatively little resistance was encountered, even though the supporting tanks could not be used for some time as the roads in parts were badly cratered and in others lavishly sown with mines. The 146th Brigade passed through and the remainder of The Island was cleared on April 3."

The Battalion moved back again to Bemmel, preparing for "Operation Anger", the capture of Arnhem; but there was a last minute change of plan. Arnhem was to be taken from the east and a different brigade was to be committed in the initial stages. Accordingly the Fusiliers crossed the IJssel, settled in Duiven and began work on the new plan.

On April 12, the day of the attack, the leading brigade got a firm foothold in the south-eastern quarter of Arnhem. "Our Battalion", states the record, "followed up on April 14, broke through the bridgehead and cleared the way to the north-west suburbs of Arnhem. Offensive patrolling and heavy accurate 'stonking' of likely positions brought in a considerable number of the enemy, many of them youngsters who had little training. On one occasion the enemy resorted to one of his underhand tricks and four men came down the road waving a white flag. The sentry of the forward section came out of cover to beckon them in. The Germans immediately dropped the flag, while fire opened up from concealed positions. We had taken precautions and our Bren opened up and shot down the four men."

The Fusiliers next moved north-westwards to Ede, halfway between Arnhem and Amersfoort, supported by tanks.

THE 11TH BN IN HOLLAND, I944,-I946 p.320

They harboured in an area some 4,000 yards short of the town and formed into three concentric circles of infantry, tanks, and soft skinned vehicles, preparatory to attacking Ede at dawn on April 17. "A" Company captured some high ground, a key position on the left flank in the outskirts of the town. Two squadrons of tanks deployed on the right into wooded country, and were closely followed by "B", "C" and "D" Companies onto their objectives. That night the Battalion entered Ede without incident and again moved north-westwards to Lunteren, a delightful Dutch village which was quite undamaged. Here the Fusiliers parted from their anti-tank guns, which could now be held in reserve within the Brigade group, as there were no longer any German tanks in the area. The retreating Germans were behind the Grebbe Line and the Fusiliers followed them as far as a position short of Scherpenzeel.

11TH BATTALION: Occupation duties and disbandment

The Battalion was at Scherpenzeel on May 5 1945, when news was received that the Germans in North West Europe had surrendered. The 49th Division was allotted an area of occupation 30 miles wide, running due north and south from the Ijsselmeer to the Waal, which included the towns of Hilversum, Utrecht and Amersfoort.

On May 18 the Fusiliers handed over to the Highland Light Infantry of Canada, which at that time contained two complete rifle companies belonging to the Royal Scots Fusiliers of Canada, one of the Regiment's Commonwealth affiliations, and moved back to Lunteren. On May 21 they took part in a victory parade at the Hague, at which the salute was taken by Prince Bernhard and General Crerar; and then passed on to Osnabruck on their way to permanent occupation duties at Ludenscheid, south of the Ruhr. Lieutenant-Colonel P. S. Sandilands, D.S.O., succeeded Lieutenant-Colonel Eykyn, D.S.O., as Commanding Officer early in November I945

In April 1946 the Battalion handed over to Belgian troops at Ludenscheid and moved to Erwitte, between Soest and Paderborn. At Truppenübungplatz, near Paderborn, the 11th. Battalion relieved the 2nd Battalion and the 4/5th Battalion which were jointly guarding a civilian internment camp. This meeting of the three battalions was an unique event in the history of the Regiment, and photographs were taken to commemorate the occasion.

 THE 11TH BN IN HOLLAND, I944,-I946, p.321

The respective commanding officers at the time were Lieutenant-Colonel J. L. Maxwell, D.S.O. (2nd Battalion), Lieutenant-Colonel M. R. J. Hope Thomson, D.S.O., M.C. (4/5th Battalion), and Lieutenant-Colonel P. S. Sandilands, D.S.O. (11th. Battalion).

The 11th. Battalion was disbanded at Paderborn in November 1946, and the majority of the rank and file were posted to the 2nd Battalion.