Category: 20th Battalion, New Zealand Army, World War II

Categories: New Zealand Army | New Zealand Army, World War II | 4th Infantry Brigade, New Zealand Army, World War II | 4th New Zealand Armoured Brigade, New Zealand Army, World War II


The 20th Battalion was an infantry battalion of the New Zealand Military Forces, which served during the Second World War as part of the 2nd New Zealand Division. During the war it was converted to an armoured regiment.

The 20th Battalion was formed in New Zealand in 1939 under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Howard Kippenberger. After a period of training it embarked for the Middle East and then onto Greece in 1941 as part of the 2nd New Zealand Division. It participated in the Battles of Greece and later in Crete. Evacuated from Crete, it then fought in the North African Campaign. It suffered heavy losses during Operation Crusader, when it was effectively destroyed by the 15th Panzer Division. Brought back up to strength, the battalion played a key role in the breakout of the 2nd New Zealand Division from Minqar Qaim in June 1942, where it had been encircled by the 21st Panzer Division. The following month, the battalion suffered heavy casualties during the First Battle of El Alamein.

In October 1943, the battalion was converted to an armoured unit and designated 20th Armoured Regiment.


Person Profiles (13)

1919 New Zealand - 27 Nov 1941
07 Nov 1913 New Zealand - 15 Jul 1942
1917 New Zealand - 11 Jul 1942
1908 Saint George, Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland, United Kingdom - 05 Dec 1941
1906 New Zealand - 17 Jan 1955
1919 New Zealand - 05 Dec 1941
13 Jun 1909 Invercargill, Southland, New Zealand - 24 Jul 1969
28 Jan 1897 Ladbrooks, Canterbury, New Zealand - 05 May 1957 photo
02 May 1918 New Zealand - 2002
30 Apr 1918 Southland, New Zealand - 24 Nov 1941
20 Apr 1917 New Zealand - 10 Jul 1989
20 Dec 1914 Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand - 30 Nov 1976
21 Sep 1908 32 Gloucester Street, Christchurch, New Zealand - 22 Nov 1994 photo




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