The Unofficial Saskatoon Light Infantry (M.G.) Site
|Brigadier Pearkes, V.C. succeeded command of the First Division and Lt. Col. A. E. Potts, E.D., was promoted to Brigadier to take command of Second Brigade. The Battalion came under command of Lt. Col. C. McKerron who was promoted from second in command. "B" Company now returned to Battalion control. At this time the Battalion passed to "under Command" of the First British Armoured Division commanded by Major General C.W.M. Norrie, D.S.O., M.C. During the evacuation from France the motorized infantry unit of this division had had most severe casualties in personnel, equipment and vehicles and the Saskatoon Light Infantry (M.G.) was to take over its functions in the Support Group commanded by Brigadier Morgan (later Deputy Chief of Staff to General Eisenhower). Thus for the expected invasion of Britain the Battalion found itself in the Ockley area doing intensive training in support of armoured brigades. This period will also be remembered for the number of inspections by "Distinguished Visitors" including one by His Royal Highness, the Duke of Glouchester. In December the Battalion passed to Corps control and did a tour of duty on the South Coast from Seaford to Shoreham.
When the Battalion left the 1st Armoured Division the following Special Order of the Day was issued by the divisional commander:
|At this time too, Major General Norrie gave permission for the Battalion to carry a small replica of the 1st Division's Armoured Sigh - a rhinoceros - on battalion vehicles. The permission was approved by the Seventh Corps. The battalion carries a small gold rhinoceros painted on both sides of its vehicles. This privlege is highly prized by all personnel of the battalion.
In January 1941, after the forming of the Canadian Corpse, the Battalion returned to the First Canadian Division and became its machine gun battalion. At this time, the Recconnaissance Troop of the battalion was disbanded and its personnel together with personnel from other recconnaissance troops became the newly formed Fourth Recconnaisence Division (Princess Louise Dragon Guards) under command of Lt. Col. H.W. Foster (later Major General H.W. Foster, commanding the First Division during the final six months of the War). Thus there began the close connection with the PLDG's and the Sask. L. I. (M.G.) which continued throughout the war years.
The Battalion was stationed in Coulsdon for the next six months. For the most part, quarters were requisitioned but a considerable number of men were billited with local inhabitants. A great number of friendships and a greater number of romances date from this period. Now began a period when the unit refreshed individual and tactical training and, as well, took part in large scale exercises of the newley constituted Canadian Corps. Lt. Col. McKerron arranged for a number of competitions to stimulate training up to platoon level. These produced keen rivalry and two weeks at Netheravon rounded off this phase of training.