Operation Chaucer

This was a British special forces operation by the Belgian Independent Parachute Company (5th Special Air Service) against German rear-area installations near Condreceau in the Le Mans north-western region of German-occupied France (28 July/15 August 1944).

The whole operation involved 22 Belgian troopers who were dropped in two groups, under the command of Lieutenant Jos Ghys and Lieutenant Raymond van der Heyden (‘Captain Hazel’), on 28 July and 9 August respectively. Both parties were dropped too late and were also lacking any form of motor transport, and were therefore able to achieve little more than a minor harrying of the German forces retreating in front of the Allied advance from the Normandy lodgement.