>> Friday, 19 February 2010
This is another ‘What if’ game involving a suppositional German landing in Kent in late 1940.
This game, it is assumed the German Paras (Falschirmjagers) have landed and grouped around a farmhouse, in approximately platoon strength.
The British have gathered a full platoon of regulars and a platoon of Home Guard
The regulars have the support of a Matilda 1 tank, the guard a Morris armoured car.
The Germans used a hidden deployment, so the British split their forces.
The armoured car an 4 Home Guardsmen were to reconnoitre the German position...
... then the regulars were to push toward the farm down one road, while the H.Gs were to go down the other road. The Matilda was between these forces.
The Home Guard platoon was to move down the left.
As per orders, the Matilda, with a Vickers gun and crew riding ‘Desant’ moved slightly ahead of the advancing lines of infantry, and was ambushed at short range by a section of Germans hiding in rough ground beyond the stream. The Matilda was undamaged beyond rattling a little under the hail of bullets, but the Vickers team was wiped out.
The Matilda, together with the supporting regulars, did eventually managed to force the ambush party to retire...
… but another newly arrived German squad began firing from the regulars right, preventing them following up. The Regulars took several casualties in this action.
The Home Guard armoured car ran into a third squad hiding in rough ground...
…while the main Home Guard force met the Falgschirmjagers command group.
The Armoured car fell back and gave long range supporting fire with its Bren, and with the support of a squad of Home Guard they managed to force their opponents to withdraw as well.
The Falschirmjagers command group lost its radio team to the Home Guards fire, and in a typically gutsy German move, ran down the hill to cover in front of the Home Guard position.
Some of the Home Guard panicked after taking a couple of casualties and fell back to better cover in the rear.
By this time however, the German centre and left began to fall back covering one another.
They had wisely decided that being attacked by twice their numbers of enemy with armoured support was not a winnable scenario.
The Germans ended up taking about the same losses as the British, but the rate of loss could not be sustained by such a small force for long.
One would imagine this British force getting broken up by a German counter attack soon after this engagement as they were in France so often. But who knows?