Major-General M Forrester CB CBE DSO* MC*

Major-General M ForresterCommanded 1/6th Bn The Queen's Royal Regiment from August 1943 to June 1944 when he was wounded.

Michael Forrester was born on 31st August 1917 and educated at Haileybury.

In October 1936 he was commissioned in the Supplementary Reserve of The Queen's Royal Regiment and in August 1938 received his Regular Commission.

In 1938, he accompanied the 2nd Battalion to Palestine when, in 1939, during operations against the Arab Rebels, he was wounded and awarded the Military Cross. Between 1940 and 1945 he served in Palestine, Egypt, Greece, Crete, the Western Desert, Syria, North Africa, Italy and France.

In 1940-41 after a period at GHQ Middle East, he was GSO 3 (Ops) British Military Mission in Greece and was awarded a bar to the Military Cross in the Battle of Crete in May 1941. During 1941-42 he was GSO 3 (Ops) at HQ Western Desert Force and HQ 13 Corps. After attending the Staff College, Haifa in 1942, he was appointed Brigade Major of 132nd Infantry Brigade in 44th Division prior to the Battle of EI Alamein where he was Mentioned in Despatches and wounded. After serving as GSO 2 (Ops) HQ 13 Corps in Syria for a short time, he was posted early in 1943 to the newly formed HQ 18th Army Group in Algeria. Meanwhile, following the Battle. of El Alamein, 131st (Queen's) Brigade had been detached from 44th Division for duty as the Lorried Infantry Brigade of 7th Armoured Division.

In May 1943 Michael Forrester joined 1/6th Queen's in 131st (Queen's) Brigade during the operations leading up to the capture of Tunis and was made second-in-command. In August he was appointed to command 1/6th Queen's and took the Battalion to Italy where, in November 1943, he was awarded the DSO for the part the Battalion had played in operations after the breakout from the Salerno Beachhead. In June 1944, while still in command of 1/6th Queen's, he was wounded in Normandy and was awarded a bar to the DSO. During 1945-46 he was GSO I (Ops) HQ 13 Corps in North East Italy, and in 1946 was appointed Military Assistant to the Supreme Allied Commander Mediterranean. Between 1947 and 1950 he was Military Assistant to the Commander British Army Staff and Army Member, British Joint Services Mission, Washington DC. From 1951 to 1952 he served with 2nd Bn The Parachute Regiment in Cyprus and the Canal Zone. During 1953-55 he was on the Directing Staff at the Staff College, Camberley and from 1955-57 was GSO I (Ops) at GHQ Kenya. Between 1957 and 1960 he commanded 3rd Bn The Parachute Regiment and, after two years as Colonel M 0 (4) in the War Office, commanded the 16th Parachute Brigade Group from 1961 to 1963.

In 1964 he attended the Imperial Defence College and from 1965-67 was GOC 4th Division in BAOR. He was Director of Infantry and Colonel Commandant-of The Queen's Division from 1967-70 when he retired. In 1960 he was made an OBE, in 1963 a CBE and in 1969 a CB. During a visit to Crete in 1966 he was made an Honorary Citizen of Canea in recognition of his part in the fighting at 1941.

He died in October 2006

Obituary of Maj. Gen. M Forrester of The Queen’s Royal Regiment.QRSNL Nov 06 p21 and 22.


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