Catalogue Finding NumberWYK1285
Office record is held atKirklees, West Yorkshire Archive Service
DescriptionComprises correspondence 1919-1987, photographs 1914-1998, newspaper cuttings 1942-1993, certificates 1917-2004
Extent0.1/4 volumes, 20 bundles and 26 items
AdminHistoryGeorge W Cowley came to Huddersfield from Liverpool c1924 where he worked at George Halls, Outfitters until they closed. For records relating to this particular firm see B/GH and KC1039. The records in this collection relate mainly to his personal life and military career. George Cowley was enlisted into the Yorkshire Dragoons Territorial Army in 1925. He joined 'C' Squadron, Queens Own Yorkshire Dragoons and was promoted to Squadron Quarter Master Sergeant in 1934. On Aug 24 1939 the unit was mobilised and left Huddersfield for training in the Malton area on 16 Sep 1939 before leaving to serve abroad in Dec of the same year. They landed at Haifa, Palestine and were engaged with the internal security of the area, being stationed at Sarafand, Latrun, Karkur, Hadera Karkur, Gedera, Rehovot, Acre, Rosh Pinna, Malkier, Sa Sa and Juella. He left Rosh Pinna for the Syrian Campaign against Vichy French in May 1941. In Jan 1942 he returned to Palestine and was stationed at Azzib where he was involved with border control on the Syria/Palestine border. It was during this campaign that he took part in the last mounted cavalry action of the British army.In his reminiscences, George Cowley notes that they 'lost our horses at Azzib Mar 1942'. From here he was transferred to Egypt where he was stationed near the Pyramids and acted as Quartermaster for the Decoy Regiment. All this coincided with preparing for the Alamein battle. During the Battle of Alamein, his job was to take up supplies of ammunition, fuel, water and food to the forward troops where he was under constant fire from enemy aircraft. Following the Battle of Alamein, George was promoted to Squadron Sgt Major and transferred to 'A' Squadron. After seeing action in Tripoli, 'A' Squadron joined up with the 1st Army and fought at Goubellat Palin, Jebel Khournine, Grombalia, Hamma Lif to Cap Bon and then to Tunis. In 1944 during the battle of Anzio, he was captured by the Germans and spent the remainder of the war in captivity. He flew home from Nuremburg in May 1945 and was reunited with his family after six years away. George W Cowley was awarded the 1939/45 Star, Africa Star with 8th Army Clasp, Italian Star, British War Defence Medal, Coronation Medal, Territorial Medal. He was also mentioned in dispatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in the Middle East.
Related MaterialB/GH & KC1039



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