Commissioned out of Sandhurst in 1943, nineteen-year-old Bill Bellamy joined the 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars. Following the Normandy landings in June 1944, he was involved in the great tank battles around the town of Caen, the battle of Mont Pincon, and then the Allied breakout into Belgium. There followed the advance into Holland and onwards to the River Maas. In October 1944, during this phase of the fighting, he was awarded an immediate Military Cross for bravery during the battle to secure the Dutch village of Doornhoek. In the spring of 1945, the 8th Hussars thrust into Germany and on towards Hamburg, eventually winding up at the very heart of Hitler's Reich, Berlin.
Bill kept diaries and notes of his experiences, and shortly after the war he used them to write up a series of articles recounting his part as a junior officer in the hard-fought battles to free Europe from the Nazis.
His accounts of tank fighting in the leafy Normandy bocage at the height of summer, or in the iron-hard fields of Holland in winter, are graphic and compelling. This personal account of a British tank commander in the battles for Normandy and the Low Countries is illustrated with archive and personal photographs, some never previously published.