South Staffordshire War Memorials

Dedicated to the memory of all the men and women of the South Staffordshire area who died during the two World Wars.

Trooper Ralph Payne, 7th Hussars.

Service Number 410710
Died 27/08/1940
Aged 25
7th Queen's Own Hussars, Royal Armoured Corps
Son of Joseph George Payne, and of Edith Annie Payne, of Blymhill, Staffordshire.

7th Queen's Own Hussars The regiment had been converted to tanks in 1937 and subsequently been trained in Cairo giving them a reasonable advantage. Although they might have thought that they were missplaced in Egypt, when Italy entered the war on the 10th June 1940, that thought quickly slipped their mind. They formed part of the 7th Armoured Brigade in the 7th Armoured Division and were joined by the 8th and the 11th Hussars. On the 14th June 1940 the 7th Hussars, with a company of the King's Royal Rifle Corps and a battery of 4th Royal Horse artillery captured Fort Capuzzo. [Wikipedia]

The Regiment exchanged its horses for light tanks and found itself in the Middle East again at the outbreak of the Second World War. As part of the famous 7th Armoured Brigade Desert Rats, The 7th Hussars fought in the important battle of Fort Capuzzo and Beda Fomm. At the bitter struggle of Sidi Rezegh [Nov/Dec 1941], The Regiment was ordered to stop the advance of 200 German tanks. It succeeded in this herculean task, though all but three of its fifty-one tanks had been destroyed at the end of this battle. []

Alexandria (Chatsby) Military and War Memorial Cemetery was used by military hospitals in Alexandria, [CWGC] which suggests that Trooper Payne died in hospital - possibly from wounds sustained in the Battle of Fort Capuzzo, 14th June 1940.

This memorial has mostly been compiled from official sources. It would be good to be able to expand it with more personal material - memories, stories, photos, etc. If you have any suitable material or any corrections please contact Greg.