A painting commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Battle for Longstop Hill, Tunisia, is on show in Campbeltown Library until Thursday 23rd May, before going on tour.
The committee of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Museum commissioned renowned military artist Stuart Brown to create the painting in honour of the soldiers of the 8th Battalion who fought in the battle. The 8th Battalion were recruited from Argyllshire, and the unveiling was attended by Campbeltown veteran Major Duncan McMillan who is the last surviving Argyll who fought in the battle.
Strong enemy resistance on Longstop Hill had blocked the Allies advance on Tunis, but the 8th Battalion captured Longstop Hill on 23 April 1943 under heavy enemy fire and despite losing their Commanding Officer at the outset. Young Major ‘Jack’ Anderson assumed command and led the uphill assault despite his own injuries, and was awarded the Victoria Cross. Many of the battalion were lost but the battle was one of the concluding actions in the fight for North Africa in World War II. The victory opened the route to Tunis for the Allies, and hastened the surrender of the Axis forces.
Argyll and Bute Council was represented by Councillor Maurice Corry, Argyll and Bute Armed Forces Champion who said
‘It is an honour for Argyll and Bute Council to display this painting of The Battle for Longstop Hill. This April the 8th Battalion Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders marked the 70th anniversary of the battle and I am delighted that it has been recognised in this way. The painting will travel around some of our libraries during the summer, and I would urge everyone to go along to their nearest library to see it.’
The painting of the Battle for Longstop Hill will tour Argyll and Bute libraries and can be seen at the following locations
Campbeltown Library: Friday 3 May – Thursday 23 May
Helensburgh Library: Saturday 25 May – Thursday 13 June
Dunoon Library: Saturday 15 June – Thursday 4 July
Oban Library: Saturday 6 July – Thursday 25 July
The painting will then be on display at Inveraray Castle by kind permission of the Duke of Argyll, before going on permanent display at the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regimental Museum in Stirling.