Reply To: Help with locating army record of relative

Frank de PlantaFrank de Planta


I think that your assumption that your cousin’s father is correct. Both 17/21L and 16/5L were in the same Armoured Brigade – along with 2 Lothian & Border Horse. Together they formed 26 Armoured Brigade who were themselves part of 6 Armoured Division.

Part of the role of REME is to provide Recce Mechs – teams who go around collecting broken down or damaged armoured vehicles and dragging them back to workshops for repair.

Being in 26 Armoured Brigade would place him at the Fourth Battle of Monte Cassino in May 44. The Brigade was allocated to support 4 Infantry Division who had the task of getting across the Rapido/Gari river below the monastery.

Once the infantry had established a bridgehead and Royal Engineers had got the now famous ‘Amazon’ bridge in place, the armour of 17/21L, 16/5L and 2 Lothian & Border Horse got across and pushed towards Rome.

To confirm all this you need to go to and, in the search box, type ‘How do I find a Service Record’. Follow the instructions. If you do not have ever piece of information that they ask for, do not worry.



Frank de Planta