WW2 Medal Grouping To Pte Hawley D-Day Gold Beach

Tuesday 21st July 2020 at 14:28

The first historic and well worthy historic grouping I would like to publish to the blog is this Large WW2 Husband & Wife Medal group. The wife W/213398 PTE Majorie Giltens Hawley ATS, date of birth 22.01.1921, she enlisted in Durham 21.8.1942 and discharged 7th September 1945. Of hers in this group is her soldiers pay book, release book, certificate of relegation, a small photo of her, national insurance identity document and war medal. 


The husband 936975 PTE William Hawley Royal artillery. Serving with the 5th battalion wast Yorkshire regiment through the duration of the war. Hawley enlisted in Leeds on the 16th June 1939 and was discharged 5.4.1946. In his military career he served with the royal artillery from 15/09/1939 to 28/03/1945, and with the royal engineers as a sapper served from the 21/03/1945 to the 05/04/1946. During his career he served all over the world including France, Germany, Egypt- Cairo, Italy-Sicily, North Africa etc! The the 5th battalion east York’s joined up with 50th (Northumbrian) Division through the Western Desert, Tunisian and Sicily campaigns before landing in the first wave on Gold Beach on D Day and then fighting through Normandy and North West Europe.



Hawley served at the battle of d-day on the 6th June 1944, this grouping contains his “What to do when you land” card. He landed on GOLD beach with the 50th Northumbrian Division, 5th battalion East Yorkshire regiment. H-Hour for the landing at Gold was set at 07:25 on King sector (50 minutes later than in the American landings, because of differences in the tide). The first wave on King was the 5th East Yorkshires and 6th Green Howards of 69th Brigade, assisted by amphibious DD tanks of the 4th/7th Dragoon Guards. The 7th Green Howards landed at 08:20. The original plan called for the 38 DD tanks to be launched from their landing craft tank about 5,000 yards (4,600 m) out. Due to extremely choppy seas, they decided to run the tanks directly onto the beach. Infantry, engineers, and DD tanks arrived almost simultaneously. Units disembarking onto the beach immediately came under fire from the casemated 88 mm gun at La Rivière, and the infantry were forced to take cover behind the sea wall. The gun was taken out when a flail tank of the Westminster Dragoons fired a charge directly into its aperture. The 5th East Yorkshires, supported by several tanks, spent the rest of the morning clearing out the heavily fortified houses of La Rivière, at the loss of 90 men, including six officers.




orders for landing invasion d day” card. “HI TROOPS, WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU LAND: On orders of OC transit area, to leave transit area go to ASSEMBLY AREA: WEST/ EAST, SECTION: TENNYSON/ KEATS, ON ORDERS TO LEAVE ASSEMBLY SEC/ SUB SEC GO TO TROOP AREA”. Then after the successful take over of the beaches there is a small field service post card letting his wife know he is ‘quiet well’ dated 10th June 1944. And then later on almost a week before the15th July 1945 he was wounded somewhere in northwest Europe, In which he was sent back to England to recover in hospital. 


Everything below is what is in this lot belonging to Husband Mr Hawley: (with wife’s items listed above).

1. WW2 medals as follows; defence medal, war medal, France and Germany star, Italy star, 1939-45 star and Africa star. 

2. Ww2 thick cardboard transit medal box to mr Hawley to somewhere in east Yorkshire. 

3. WW2 dog tags x 2 on string “956975, CE, Hawley, W”. 

4. 2x WW2 medal bars with 8th army number on. One medal bar fabric ribbon bar and the other paper and plastic. 

5. Ww2 For your guidance, what to do on leaving the service and how to do it Book/ pamphlet. 

6. Ww2 Soldiers guide to Sicily 

7. Ww2 Services guide to Cairo (Egypt)

8. Ww2 1943 France handbook 

9. Ww2 release and resettlement handbook

10. Ww2 what you want to say and how to say it in french hand pocket book.

11. Ww2 soldiers release book class A

12. Ww2 soldiers pay book

13. WW2 orders for landing invasion D-Day instructions leaflet (can be seen in photos).

14. Ww2 field service postcard dated 10th June 1944 “I am quiet well”.

15. WW2 field service postcard dated 15th July 1944 “I have been admitted into hospital in England, and am going on well. Wounded”.

16. WW2 record of service - royal artillery & royal engineers 

17. Ww2 envolope with “snaps taken in North Africa and time when in hospital and in the mile in houseboay” 

18. 4x WW2 North Africa soldier & him snaps from envolope

19. Ww2 certificate of transfer to the army reserve To royal engineers.

20. Ww2 Leaflet for men and women leaving the forces.

21. Ww2 royal engineers old comrades association we can help you get a job leaflet/ poster.

22. Ww2 regimental and old comrades associations leaflet 1945 dated

23. Ww2 Post war credits leaflet 

24. Ww2 leaflet for soldiers released or discharged 

25. Ww2 your train service home railway warrant 

26. Ww2 release savings bank pay form

27. Ww2 cloth wash dress label tickets x 8 unused 

28. Ww2 all services list of stores, plants, tools, instruments etc- request for shoes after being wounded and transferred to English hospital. 

29. WW2 love poem to his sweetheart titled “LILI MARLENE” 

30. Filled in Ww2 clothing depot ticket/ letter to regimental paymaster for an event of not owning a greatcoat.

31.WW2 release serial number is “66919.” Paperwork notice

32. Ww2 subject of release letter admin form r1

33. Ww2 rice paper sheet with the logo and text of “2ND BN THE HIGHLAND LIGHT INFANTRY MIDDLE EAST” with a paragraph in german.

I thoroughly enjoyed researching this great historic lot, one of those items you really wish you kept! Stay tuned for more War stories! Untill next time.... Thankyou.