Gayton Patrol

County Group

The small village of Gayton lies 7 miles east of King's Lynn.

Patrol members
Name Occupation Posted from Until
Sergeant Herbert James Haggas


Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Private Ernest William Causton


Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Private George Church


Unknown 17 Feb 1943
Private Robert William Eggleton

Agricultural labourer

Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Private George Robert Grief

Agricultural labourer

Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Private Robert William Pennell


Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Private Horace Edmund Shackcloth

Agricultural labourer

Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Private Frederick Paul Welham

Agricultural labourer

Unknown 03 Dec 1944
Operational Base (OB)

The OB is located on private farmland owned by Julian Marsham, Earl of Romney, and was accessed by his kind permission.

Mr John Haggas (son of Patrol Leader Sergeant H Haggas), who farms some of Lord Romney’s land, took us to the location which we probably would not have found without his kind assistance.

The OB was removed after the war and the remaining rectangular depression in the ground is much overgrown and filled with branches and logs. The size of the depression is 5 x 2.50m and it is orientated East / West.

A short gully, pointed out to us by Mr Haggas, denotes the spot where the entrance shaft would have been.

Patrol & OB pictures
OB Image
Caption & credit
Remaining rectangular depression in the ground is much overgrown and filled with branches and logs
OB Image
Caption & credit
The OB was removed after the war
OB Image
Caption & credit
L-R: Harry Shackloth - Robert Pennell - Paul Welham – Sgt ‘Jim’ Haggas - Ernie Causton - Bob Eggleton – George Grief. This picture was taken in the garden of Sgt Jim Haggas’ farm (thanks to Simon Coker)
OB Status
OB accessibility
This OB is on private land. Please do not be tempted to trespass to see it

Gayton Patrol

Patrol Targets

RAF (Heavy Bomber airfield) in Great Massingham along with railway lines and bridges in the vicinity were possible targets.


Training was done by Scout Section experts in explosives training at Leicester Square Farm, Syderstone; sometimes testing security on airfields.

Ted Pennel remembers his father telling him after the war that they used to practice, using his .22 rifle, in the gravel pits near to Haggas' Farm on the Grimston Road on Sundays. Initially they trained with wooden replicas [info: Ray Furminger].


Other information

The following information was kindly provided by Ray Furminger, whose grandfather was Patrol member Ernest Causton’s youngest brother:

"Ernest Willian Causton is interred in Ashwicken cemetery, which is a couple of miles west of Gayton. I lived with him, his wife and daughter during the war in Well Hall Lane, Ashwicken. He told me a few things about his "clandestine" activities during WW2 while out on patrol. One of which was breaking into a base (Gt Massingham?) with members of his Patrol and that there were "red" faces on the base the following day. This achievement particularly delighted him because as I recall he struggled to maintain his composure while recounting the story to me sometime in the late 70's or early 80's.

Unfortunately, I did not appreciate the significance of these gems of news at the time of being told. I also remember the name Haggas being mentioned as one of the Patrol members [The Haggas family had a farm at the top of Well Hall Lane]. Of course Lord Romney's name was mentioned several times by Ernest but I cannot recall in what specific context."

Norfolk Group 8 Stand-down photo [Original owned by Desmond Neville, son of Patrol member Deryck Neville]


TNA ref WO199/3389

Hancock data held at B.R.A

Evelyn Simak and Adrian Pye

John Haggas (grandson of Sgt Haggas, Gayton patrol);

Desmond Neville (son of Deryck Neville, Castle Rising Patrol);

Simon Coker;

Ted Pennel (son of R.W Pennell, Gayton Patrol);

Ray Furminger (relative of E.W Causton);

A Hoare, Standing up to Hitler (2002