Battle of Cristot 11th June 1944 – Turns 1 to 8

This game is an adaption of a Rapid Fire scenario in the ‘Normandy Battlegames’ scenario book. It is relatively straightforward to adapt for Blitzkrieg Commander 4 with slightly more AFV’s being the most obvious change.

Background to the battle.

After D-Day the 50th Infantry Division supported by the 8th Armoured Brigade pushed forward south of Bayeux in an attempt to take Tilly-sur-Suelles prior to a move on Villers Bocage with a view to outflanking the German defenders of Caen.  

The Germans had been reinforced by the Panzer Lehr Division who launched an attack towards Bayeux on the 9th June advancing to within 3 miles before being pulled back. On 11th June the 69th Brigade of the 50th Division attacked SS units defending the villages of Brouay and Cristot with the particular aim of capturing Hill 102, a slight rise giving commanding views over the area.

This scenario covers that assault by the 69th Brigade. 

Continued –

Table Size – 5’3″ x 3’9″

Rules – Blitzkrieg Commander IV (BKC)

Figures and vehicles – mix Heroics & Ros, 2D6 and GHQ


British Deployment
Battlegroup, other than reinforcements, to deploy along the dotted line between points ‘B’.
British Reinforcements
Move 4: The Green Howards and the 41st AT Battery enter at any point between points ‘B’.
German Deployment
All forces other than reinforcements deploy east of the dashed line between points ‘G’. 
The 12th SS Recce Battalion and supporting troop of Panthers deploy within 12cm of Cristot / Hill 102.
1/26th SS Panzergrenadiers deploy within 12cm of Brouay.
Battlegroup HQ and FAO may be deployed anywhere.
German Reinforcements
Move 5: PzIV company and 2/26th Panzergrenadiers enter on road G1. On move 4 roll one D6 and a 1, 2, or 3 means there is a one move delay in their arrival. 
Victory Conditions
German or British to win: Hold Brouay, Cristot and Hill 102 at the end of the game. A draw occurs if one objective is held each with elements actively contesting the 3rd.
Rules Amendments

All hit points will remain on at the end of the turn. To make it a little less bloody I have halved the hits causing casualties but the full number of hits are used to ascertain if suppression has been caused.
All company HQ’s are fighting commands.

The East Yorks have been given the task of capturing Brouay. The Durham Light Infantry occupies the right flank and is tasked with capturing Cristot before moving on to Hill 102. They will be supported by the tanks of the Dragoon Guards. On their arrival the Green Howards will reinforce the Durham LI with the 41st AT battery supporting the East Yorks.
The Germans have deployed as per the restrictions above, occupying buildings, woods and concealed behind bocage.
A peaceful Cristot.
Germans deploy behind bocage in and around Les Haut Veuts.
Recce infantry from the Durham Light infantry mounted in a universal carrier move out ahead near Le Haut d’Adrieu in turn 1.
Shermans of the Dragoon Guards leads the two infantry battalions towards the west road.

Durham Light infantry move onto Hill 103.

The British observe their target, Hill 102.

Looking north east towards Brouay.

Turn 2

All British units move tentatively forward. Here the Durham LI 6pdr AT gun deploys to cover the approach to Cristot.

As the British tanks move into the west road they are spotted by the German FAO. He successfully calls in a concentration barrage from the off-table 150mm artillery. Several tanks and infantry units are hit but none suppressed.

Turn 3

The East Yorks recce platoon mounted on a universal carrier make their way through the woods to the south west of Brouay but fail to spot German infantry units moving in the opposite direction until they are almost upon them. Using opportunity fire they open up on the nearest infantry inflicting several casualties (middle left). Unfortunately for the British unit another German infantry platoon from the 1/26th SS Panzer Grenadiers is close enough to fire it’s Panzerfaust completely destroying the carrier and its occupants (middle right). 
A coy of the East Yorks take cover behind a hedgerow on the approach to Brouay. So far no Germans are observed.

Durham LI A coy has entered the west road and shelters behind the bocage. B coy is in the foreground.

The view north along west road as units from both British on table infantry battalions move carefully forward.
As the Dragoon Guards move through crops supported by an infantry platoon they are again the target of German off-table artillery. Another barrage is successfully called in suppressing 3 of the 5 tanks.
In response to the British armoured threat, the Panther company is ordered towards Cristot.
Turn 4

The E Yorks battalion continues to advance tentatively towards Brouay with C company about to enter the woods to investigate the sound of gunfire from where the Recce platoon should be.

In the foreground, A company of the Green Howards and the Achilles of the AT battery arrive.

The two unsuppressed tanks of the Dragoon Guards along with a Piat platoon advance towards Cristot. There is still no sign of the Germans. 

A company of the Durham Light Infantry advance along a hedgerow to support the British armour.

Turn 5

C Company of the E Yorks advance through the woods and find the decimated recce company. They are immediately seen by the German infantry who open fire suppressing one of the British platoons. The remainder of the company return fire successfully suppressing a German platoon.

D Company advances along the road south of C Company’s skirmish.
The Germans again target the British armour with off table artillery. This time missing badly and failing to inflict any damage on the few units under the fall of shell.

The Dragoon Guards take up position on the outskirts of Cristot and are joined by a company of infantry. Fighting breaks out within Cristot as British and German recce units come into contact. 

Infantry companies of the Green Howards advance through the centre of the British position ready to reinforce any formations as required.
Turn 6

B Company of the E Yorks has now moved into the woods to support C Company. The German infantry company decided retreat was in order an pulled back to the eastern perimeter.

D Company continues to skirt around the woods on the road.

As the Durham LI begin to move into Cristot they come under fire from the Panthers. A Sherman Firefly exchanges fire with one of the Panthers coming off worse and falls back suppressed (middle left of photo).

German reinforcements arrive – the 2nd battalion of the 26th SS Panzer Grenadiers. 

The are led by the Pz IV’s of the 12th SS Panzer Regiment.

The lead tank of which opens fire on the side of a Dragoon Guards Sherman on the outskirts of Cristot, scoring two hits and suppressing it.

Near Brouay, a German 75mm AT gun reveals itself firing on an approaching Achilles SPG.

The lead Achilles suffers two hits and is suppressed.

A few photos showing an overview of the battlefield at the end of turn 6.

The E Yorks moving on their target of Brouay.

The action around Cristot with the Green Howards moving up in support.

Another view of Cristot from the German lines.

Turn 7

A Company of the E Yorks battalion suffers a command blunder (lower middle). It advances across open ground towards Brouay and suffers heavily from doing so. An MG42 and an infantry platoon open fire from the nearest building decimating one platoon and suppressing the other two. They are also hit by mortar fire compounding their difficulties. A Vickers MMG sited in the building at bottom of photo endeavours to help firing on the German occupied building. They succeed in suppressing the rifle platoon but all too late. The damage is done.

The 17pdr Achilles advancing along the road suffer likewise. The 2nd Achilles advances past the first and is also hit by the German 75mm AT gun suppressing it.

A sIG33 150mm Infantry Gun south of Brouay sees British infantry advancing along the road and opens fire.

The target for the sIG is D Company of the E Yorks who swing off the road towards the German platoon that has just fallen back out of the woods to the south west of Brouay. The nearest platoon suffers two hits from the Infantry Gun and is suppressed. The remaining two platoons charge towards the Germans with another platoon becoming suppressed by German rifle fire. The third platoon close assaults the Germans but it narrowly defeated and falls back.

B Company, Durham LI, assault the left most building of Cristot destroying the SS Recce platoon occupying it. The remainder of the company assault the church but are beaten back. 

The tank duel between the Shermans, including a 17pdr Firefly, and the 2 Panthers continues. The Shermans suffer badly with the Firefly destroyed and the 75mm Sherman suppressed with minimal damage to the Panthers. 

At the bottom right of the photo, a company from the 2nd Battalion 26th SS Panzer Grenadiers arrives to reinforce Cristot.

The Panzer IV’s concentrate their fire on Sherman sited to the north of the church causing it to ‘brew up’ spectacularly.

C Company of the Durham LI come under fire from Les Haut Veuts as they rush to the cover of the perimeter wall.
Turn 8

A company of the E Yorks get hammered again losing another platoon with the last badly mauled survivor falling back to the cover of the hedgerow.
A German infantry platoon equipped with a Panzerfaust move up on a damaged Achilles. The Panzerfaust finished it off easily.
D Company of the E Yorks do not have time to recover before the German platoon fell back rather than face annihilation from the B and C companies emerging from the woods.
The view looking from Cristot towards Brouay. Units of the 2nd Battalion of the 26th SS PzGrenadiers have taken up position along the western boundary of the orchard. To the left, A Company of the Green Howards have moved through the cornfield to the hedge boundary. Neither side can see each other at present. 

C and D Companies of the Green Howards move up towards Cristot.

The tank duel between the Shermans and the Panzer IV’s ends badly for the former. Two Shermans, including a Firefly, are destroyed to one PzIV.

Another Sherman is destroyed by a Panther in Cristot leaving just one surviving British tank. The fight around the church continues with the Germans gaining the upper hand destroying two platoons of B company Durham LI.
Better news arrives for the British at Les Haut Veuts. C Company of the Durham LI cross the wall and storm the building successfully destroying a Recce platoon. The abandoned Sdkfz 250/1 halftrack remains nearby.

Units of the German Recce battalion begin to pull back to Hill 102 as pressure mounts from the Durham Light Infantry.

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