Friday, April 23, 2010

Day 237 April 24, 1940

RAF arrives in Norway! 18 Gladiator biplanes (263 Squadron) from HMS Glorious land on Lake Lesjaskogsvatnet, midway between Åndalsnes and Dombås. Notably, they have no anti-aircraft support.

General Bernard Paget’s 15th Brigade lands at Åndalsnes, having sailed from France on April 15, and moves South down the Gudbrandsdal valley towards Lillehammer to reinforce Norwegian troops holding the German advance. They pass Morgan’s defeated 148th Brigade falling back to Åndalsnes.

In heavy Lutfwaffe attacks on Åndalsnes, anti-aircraft cruiser HMS Curacoa is badly damaged when she is struck by a bomb below the bridge, which explode between decks killing 45 and wounding 36. She will returned to Chatham for repairs and resume active duty in August.

U-23 make two unsuccessful attacks on British cruiser HMS York (returning to Scapa Flow from Åndalsnes having disembarked General Paget’s 15th Brigade).

Norwegian 6th Brigade under General Carl Gustav Fleischer attacks Dietl’s perimeter North of Narvik. They are held by the Germans at Lapphaug Pass but those marching over Fjordbotneidet mountain find Gratangsbotn undefended. Germans falling back from Lapphaug surprise the resting Norwegians (killing 34, wounding 64 and 130 prisoners) and retake Gratangsbotn (for 9 dead or missing, 16 wounded).

Battleship HMS Warspite, cruisers HMS Effingham, Enterprise, Aurora and destroyer HMS Zulu (screened by British destroyers HMS Encounter, Escort, Faulknor, Foxhound, Havock, Hero, Hostile and Polish destroyers Blyskawica and Grom) sail into Ofotfjord and bombard Narvik. HMS Effingham sinks captured British steamer Riverton, docked in the harbour. Naval commander Lord Cork and Orrery goes ashore away from Narvik to assess conditions on the coastline and again concludes that deep snow will make opposed landings impossible.

Hitler appoints Josef Antonius Heinrich Terboven as Reichskommissar or Gauleiter of Norway.,_Norwegen,_Besuch_Himmler,_Terboven_und_Quisling.jpg

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