Battle of Verrières Ridge

Verrières RidgeBattle of Verrieres RidgeBourguébus Ridgefighting for Verrières Ridgeseven-day battleVerrièresVerrières Ridge- Tilly-la-Campagne
The Battle of Verrières Ridge was a series of engagements fought as part of the Battle of Normandy, in Calvados, during the Second World War.wikipedia
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Operation Atlantic

AtlanticFaubourg de VaucellesOperations ''Atlantic
The battle was part of the British and Canadian attempts to break out of Caen, and took place from 19 to 25 July 1944, being part of both Operation Atlantic (18–21 July) and Operation Spring (25–27 July).
It was initially successful, with gains made on the flanks of the Orne River near Saint-André-sur-Orne but an attack by the 4th and 6th Canadian Infantry Brigades of the 2nd Canadian Infantry Division, against strongly defended German positions on Verrières Ridge to the south was a costly failure.

Operation Cobra

breakout from NormandyBattle of Normandythe Allied breakthrough at Saint Lo in July 1944
While failing to achieve its original objective, an important strategic result of the Battle of Verrières Ridge was to aid the overwhelmingly successful Operation Cobra, by tying down powerful German Panzer formations that might otherwise have been moved to counter-attack Cobra.
Again the fighting for Verrières Ridge proved extremely bloody for the Canadians, with 25 July marking the costliest day for a Canadian battalion—The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada—since the Dieppe Raid of 1942.

2nd Canadian Division during World War II

2nd Canadian Infantry Division2ndCanadian 2nd Infantry Division
The onus of the task therefore fell on the fresh, though relatively inexperienced, Canadian 2nd Infantry Division, along with the tanks of the Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade.
In the aftermath, General Bernard Montgomery, commander of the Anglo-Canadian 21st Army Group, ordered elements of II Canadian Corps, commanded by Lieutenant-General Guy Simonds, to push forward towards Verrières Ridge, the dominant geographical feature between Caen and Falaise.

The Essex Scottish Regiment

Essex Scottish RegimentEssex ScottishEssex Fusiliers
Counter-attacks by two Panzer divisions threw the South Saskatchewans back past their support lines and their supporting battalion—the Essex Scottish—came under attack.
The Essex Scottish later participated in Operation Atlantic and was slaughtered attempting to take Verrières Ridge on July 21.

272nd Infantry Division (Wehrmacht)

272nd Infantry Division272nd ''Volksgrenadier'' Division272nd Grenadier Infantry Division
Further support was available from the 272nd Grenadier Infantry Division (a force composed mainly of Russian and Polish combatants that had been raised in 1943), the 116th Panzer Division and a battalion of Tiger tanks.
On 25 July 1944, after a preliminary barrage lasting upwards of five hours, forces of the II Canadian Corps initiated a massive offensive across a seven-kilometer front, stretching from the Orne River to Bourguebus Ridge, along the entire northern slope of Verrières Ridge.

Operation Charnwood

CharnwoodOperation ''CharnwoodBombing of Caen
On 9 July, Operation Charnwood succeeded in taking the northern half of the city, but the I SS Panzer Corps maintained defensive positions in the remainder of Caen.
II Corps ran into fierce opposition; during the seven-day battle that followed the Canadians sustained 2,800 casualties.

Operation Totalize

TotalizeFalaise RoadHill 195
With German defences weakened, subsequent Commonwealth attacks on the ridge were successful; Operation Totalize finally managed to wrest the position from its SS defenders on 8 August.
The Germans retained their hold the commanding terrain of the Verrières Ridge 5 mi south of the city.

1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler

Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler1st SS Panzer DivisionSS Division Leibstandarte
Two powerful formations—the 12th SS and 1st SS Panzer Divisions—held the ridge supported by artillery, dug-in Tiger tanks and mortar emplacements.
The Canadians attacked next in the Battle of Verrières Ridge and Operation Spring (see map), where the LSSAH came up against a number of Allied divisions, including the Guards Armoured Division, 7th Armoured, 2nd and 3rd Canadian Divisions.

The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada

Black WatchBlack Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of CanadaBlack Watch Regiment
From the perspective of the Canadian 1st Army, the battle is remembered for its tactical and strategic miscalculations—the most notable being a highly controversial attack by The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada on 25 July, in which 315 of its 325 soldiers were killed, wounded or captured.

Invasion of Normandy

Normandy invasionNormandyBattle of Normandy
The Battle of Verrières Ridge was a series of engagements fought as part of the Battle of Normandy, in Calvados, during the Second World War.

Calvados (department)

CalvadosCalvados departmentdepartment of Calvados
The Battle of Verrières Ridge was a series of engagements fought as part of the Battle of Normandy, in Calvados, during the Second World War.

World War II

Second World WarwarWWII
The Battle of Verrières Ridge was a series of engagements fought as part of the Battle of Normandy, in Calvados, during the Second World War.

Canada

CanadianCANCanadians
The main combatants were two Canadian infantry divisions—with additional support from the Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade—against elements of three German SS Panzer divisions.

2nd Canadian Armoured Brigade

Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade2nd Canadian (Armoured) Brigade
The main combatants were two Canadian infantry divisions—with additional support from the Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade—against elements of three German SS Panzer divisions.

Nazi Germany

Third ReichGermanGermany
The main combatants were two Canadian infantry divisions—with additional support from the Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade—against elements of three German SS Panzer divisions.

Schutzstaffel

SSßNazi SS
The main combatants were two Canadian infantry divisions—with additional support from the Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade—against elements of three German SS Panzer divisions.

Panzer

PanzersPanzer Tanktank
The main combatants were two Canadian infantry divisions—with additional support from the Canadian 2nd Armoured Brigade—against elements of three German SS Panzer divisions.

United Kingdom

BritishUKBritain
The battle was part of the British and Canadian attempts to break out of Caen, and took place from 19 to 25 July 1944, being part of both Operation Atlantic (18–21 July) and Operation Spring (25–27 July).

Caen

Caen, France Caen in NormandyCaen commune
The battle was part of the British and Canadian attempts to break out of Caen, and took place from 19 to 25 July 1944, being part of both Operation Atlantic (18–21 July) and Operation Spring (25–27 July).

Operation Spring

SpringCrête de Verrières-Tilly-la-Campagne
The battle was part of the British and Canadian attempts to break out of Caen, and took place from 19 to 25 July 1944, being part of both Operation Atlantic (18–21 July) and Operation Spring (25–27 July).

Allies of World War II

AlliedAlliesAllied forces
The immediate Allied objective was Verrières Ridge, a belt of high ground which dominates the route from Caen to Falaise.

Falaise, Calvados

Falaise FalaiseFalais
The immediate Allied objective was Verrières Ridge, a belt of high ground which dominates the route from Caen to Falaise.

First Canadian Army

Canadian First ArmyCanadian 1st ArmyCanadian Army
From the perspective of the Canadian 1st Army, the battle is remembered for its tactical and strategic miscalculations—the most notable being a highly controversial attack by The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada on 25 July, in which 315 of its 325 soldiers were killed, wounded or captured.

Dieppe Raid

DieppeOperation Jubileeraid on Dieppe
This attack—the costliest single day for a Canadian battalion since the 1942 Dieppe Raid—has become one of the most contentious and critically analysed events in Canadian military history.

Normandy landings

D-DayD-Day landingsOperation Neptune
Although a major D-Day objective for Commonwealth forces, the Allied push inland was halted short of Caen and positional warfare ensued until the first week of July.