Guns
and
Bugles
 
 
The badge of the K.S.L.I.




Written
by

Don Neal
 

BOOK REVIEWS

 
It has been almost 12 months since my book was released. Since that time I have received many flattering and moving letters from those featured in the book and those related to them.

The book has found its way to several museums in Normandy and Holland, and it is most gratifying to know that so many people have read of the great deeds performed by my Fathers regiment and indeed the 15th Scottish Division.

In order to keep the cost of the book as low as possible, I chose not to take any royalties on the publisher's sales, I just want as many people as possible to read it.

My web-site continues to attract enquiries and messages from all over the world and has prompted many more contacts, my continued thanks to Mark Smith and UK LIVE.

The story of the Regiment is still coming together. Below are two reviews my book received.

From - "The Silver Bugle". The Regimental magazine of the Light Infantry.

THIS THOROUGHLY RESEARCHED AND EXCELLENTLY ILLUSTRATED BOOK TELLS THE STORY OF 6 KSLI AND ITS REINCARNATION AS 181 FIELD REGIMENT ROYAL ARTILLERY 1940-46. IT WAS INSPIRED BY THE WARTIME EXPLOITS OF THE AUTHOR'S FATHER (6KSLI/181FIELD REGIMENT RA) AND IS THE CULMINATION OF SIX YEARS OF PAINSTAKING WORK BY DON NEAL. THE BOOK IS HIGHLY COMMENDED BY THE CURATOR OF THE SHROPSHIRE REGIMENTAL MUSEUM WHO CONSIDERS THAT IT FILLS A SIGNIFICANT GAP IN THE CHRONICLED WARTIME HISTORY OF THE KSLI.

From - "The Gunner". The Regimental magazine of the Royal Artillery.

FOLLOWING THE DEATH OF HIS FATHER IN 1990 AND INSPIRED BY HIS FATHER'S WAR SERVICE, OF WHICH HE NEVER SPOKE, THE AUTHOR DECIDED TO RECORD THE HISTORY OF HIS FATHERS WARITME REGIMENT AND OVER THE PERIOD OF SOME SIX YEARS HE MANAGED TO TRACE A LARGE NUMBER OF THE SURVIVING MEMBERS OF THAT REGIMENT AND BY SENSITIVE INTERVIEWING AND PERUSAL OF PERSONAL LETTERS AND OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS HE WAS ABLE TO RECORD THE STORY OF THE
6th Bn KING'S SHROPSHIRE LIGHT INFANTRY AND ITS SUCCESSOR UNIT THE 181ST FIELD REGIMENT RA

DESPITE HAVING NO MILITARY SERVICE OF HIS OWN DON NEAL HAS PRODUCED A SIMPLE BUT EXCELLENT HISTORY OF HIS FATHERS REGIMENTAL SERVICE FROM HIS ENLISTMENT INTO A LIGHT INFANTRY BATTALION MADE UP FROM MEN DRAWN FROM SHROPSHIRE IN JUNE, 1940 AND ITS SUBSEQUENT CONVERSION TO A GUNNER UNIT ON 1ST MARCH 1942. DURING THE ALMOST TWO YEARS OF ITS EXISTENCE THE 6TH Bn KSLI WAS LARGELY ENGAGED IN A HOME DEFENCE ROLE MOVING AROUND THE EASTERN COUNTIES BEFORE RETURNING TO THE SHREWSBURY MARCHES FOR CONVERSION INTO A ROYAL ARTILLERY FIELD UNIT AND SUBSEQUENT ATTACHMENT TO THE 15TH SCOTTISH DIVISION BEFORE THAT DIVISION BECAME ENGAGED IN THE NORMANDY INVASION.

THE AUTHOR COVERS THE FIGHTING RECORD OF 181 FIELD REGIMENT FROM ITS LANDING AT ARROWMANCHES THROUGH TO THE END OF THE WAR, BY WHICH TIME THE REGIMENT HAD REACHED VORBURG. THE REGIMENT WAS DISBANDED FINALLY ON 9TH JANUARY 1946. HIS DESCRIPTIONS OF THE REGIMENT'S MANY ACTIONS SUPPORTING THE 'JOCKS' ARE GRAPHICALLY PORTRAYED AS IT MOVED THROUGH
FRANCE, BELGIUM, HOLLAND, AND GERMANY AND IS A SOUND AND INTERESTING RECORD OF THE COURAGE, STEADFASTNESS AND LOYALTY OF THE SHROPSHIRE SOLDIER IN WAR AND THE HARDSHIPS THEY WERE REQUIRED TO ENDURE. IF THE AUTHOR HAD NOT BEEN INSPIRED TO DEVOTE HIS TIME TO ASCERTAINING WHAT HIS FATHER AND COLLEAGUES HAD DONE DURING THE WAR IT IS UNLIKELY THAT THE HISTORY OF THIS UNIT WOULD HAVE BEEN WRITTEN. ALSO, THE MANY EXCELLENT PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN BY MEMBERS OF THE UNIT, WHICH ARE INCLUDED IN THIS BOOK WOULD HAVE BEEN LOST FOREVER AND ANOTHER PIECE OF HUMAN HISTORY WOULD HAVE DISSAPEARED.

THIS BOOK IS, THEREFORE, A WELCOME ADDITION TO THE HISTORY OF THE ROYAL ARTILLERY.

From -'Bookshelf' Medal News December 2002


Inspired by the wartime efforts of his father the author spent six years researching the story of the 6th Battalion King's Shropshire Light Infantry. He discovered that it was formed during World War two and after a short period of coastal defence duties was retrained and converted to a Royal Artillery Field Regiment. They became the only Field Regiment of English Gunners affiliated into the Battle Order of the 15th Scottish Division and after D-Day soon became involved in every major battle in North-West Europe and into Germany and the Baltic coast.
As expected with a book so well researched the appendices include all the information the medal collector could wish for:
Roll of honour and casualty lists, honours and awards, citations, etc, etc. No KSLI collector should be without it and anyone with an interest in World War 2 will be enthralled.


Photo Galleries
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Web site provided by UKLive.Net in thanks for the book.