It is my sad duty to inform the Regiment that Major (QM) Douglas Clifford Mortimer died peacefully at 09:30 hours today 31 October 2022.
Born on 8 September 1925 Dougie enlisted on 05/08/1943 and after 6 weeks basic training was posted to the Essex Regiment for a further 10 weeks training at Brentwood and on completion was posted to the 2nd Battalion the Essex Regiment. Training thereafter was in preparation for a D Day landing, as 2ndEssex Regiment were to be part of 56 Infantry Brigade, together with 2ndGloucestershire Regiment and 2nd South Wales Borders. He did not take part in the actual D Day landings as he was in hospital in Southampton. His Pl Sgt had sent for a doctor, who came to the tent Douggie was billeted in prior to embarkation. The MO declared Dougie was not fit and he was sent by ambulance with an armed escort to hospital. From Southampton he was sent to a general hospital in Macclesfield. Recovering and being declared fit he was sent to a camp for reinforcements and together with many other personnel of the Essex regiment set off to join up with what they thought would be the 2nd Essex. This wasn’t to be the case. 43rd Wessex Division had been tasked to capture and hold Hill 112 overlooking Caen, which they did but, in the process, suffered very heavy casualties. The result was that Dougie with many Essex Regiment NCOs became ‘A’ Company 4th Battalion The Dorset Regiment . Dougie never did meet up with 2nd Essex again.
Dougie remained reluctant to talk about the fighting in Normandy except to say the fighting through the ‘bocage’ was horrendous, and that was the polite description.
At the endo of the war Dougie went as an ERE NCO to a bomb disposal unit in Bristol who were due to take about 70 German POW’s to Braunton, North Devon, to assist the Sappers clear the British Anti Tank mines that had been placed in the sand hills to prevent Saunton Sands beaches being used as a landing beach for a German invasion.
After that ERE posting Dougie was sent to 1st Battalion The Royal Hampshire Regiment who were the Training Battalion for the Wessex Brigade. Whilst with the Royal Hampshire’s he was sent to Warminster to attend a Senior NCO’s Tactic course, which he enjoyed and obtained a very good result, thereby gaining promotion to substantive Sergeant. On returning the Royal Hampshire’s he was posted to training Company and assumed the role of instructing the intakes of National Servicemen.
When the Royal Hampshire’s came to the end of their training commitment to the Wessex Brigade, they were due to be posted to BAOR, les Dougie who was promoted to S/Sgt to become an instructor on the Senior NCO’s Tactics course. Defence cuts within the Armed Forces saw the Senior NCO’s Tactics Wing closed and instead of re-joining 1 R HAMPS the MOD in its wisdom decided Dougie should be posted to 1st Battalion the Wiltshire Regiment in Hong Kong.
Dougie service in the Wiltshire’s is summarised as C/Sgt in 1953; WO2 in 1954; WO 1 in 1960; RSM 1 DERR in Malta from 1962 to 1964. Wessex Depot from 1965 to 1966 and granted a QM’s Commission in 1966.
QM Malawi Rifles 1966 to 1968; QM Tech 1 DERR 1968 and the QM in 1969 to 1973, leaving the Battalion in Berlin on being posted to Dubai where he served until 1976 and then assumed his last appointment working in Dusseldorf Rhine Army Rear HQ before retiring in 1977 after 34 years loyal service.