8th Rifle Brigade - from Normandy to the Baltic - June 1944 - May 1945


13 Platoon was H Company’s so called ‘scout’ platoon. It had a reconnaissance role and was equipped with fast, tracked, lightly armoured and highly maneuverable Brengun carriers. The other platoons in H Company were 14, 15 and 16 ‘motor’ platoons; mobile infantry transported in armoured half-tracks.  Each carrier in 13 Platoon had a crew of three: carrier commander, driver and gunner. Like all platoons 13 Platoon consisted of three sections –  with three carriers each – and had a further two carriers for the commanding officer and the 2nd in command. For most of the campaign in North-West Europe these officers were Lieutenant Brian Neill and 2nd Lieutenant Derek Davies.  

Special attention is paid on this site, to this platoon, because one of its members was Don Gillate, the author of ‘With the 8th Rifle Brigade from Normandy to the Baltic’. Some interesting links to further information, including Don Gillate’s original audio tapes, may be found at the bottom of this page. 

Identification discs, medals and insignia Rfn. George Whitmarsh, 13 Platoon - Jeltes collection