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Official British Army history - ??

June 23 2011 at 1:44 PM
Michael Dorosh 

Response to British Army History Online - Battle Honours

I just received my copies of the two volumes of VICTORY IN THE WEST, part of the 18-volume Official History of the Second World War, and it occurs to me only now that the British have rolled their political, economic, naval, land and air force histories into one set of books. The Canadians had separate volumes for the three services, and a volume on political affairs. I should have realized there is more than one way to skin a cat.

I am looking for a detailed history of the British Army in NW Europe.

I have copies of Stackpole's books such as COLOSSAL CRACKS which is actuall a doctoral dissertation on Army-level history. It's a great book, but it doesn't tell me what individual battalions of the 2nd Army were doing on any given day, the way that Stacey's VICTORY CAMPAIGN does. Likewise, Stackpole's history of the campaign in NW Europe by Levine is such a general overview it is worthless for that also.

From a Canadian perspective, there are several books available -
Gaudemus Igatur is a nice precis, and Stacey's THE CANADIAN ARMY or the three volume OFFICIAL HISTORY OF THE CANADIAN ARMY IN THE SECOND WORLD WAR all fill this bill, the latter two available free from not one, but two sources - hyperwar and the DHH website.

Is there any kind of book - official or not - that covers the British Army in NW Europe from 6 June to VE Day that gives a decent overview of 2nd Army operations, and describes the movements of the formations and which battalions were involved in which actions?

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