102 (Northumberland Hussars) Archer TAC sign

Discussion in 'Royal Artillery' started by Smudge, Nov 18, 2013.

  1. Smudge

    Smudge Member

    Hi guys

    Can you help…what does the tac sign L1 denote on this 102 (Northumberland Hussars), 15 Div, Archer? I’ve looked on Derek’s RA 1939-45 site and can’t see the prefix L in tactical markings. I’m surmising it’s the number of an individual gun but what sub unit etc? where does the L1 come into the equation?

    Edited this post; this is the photo (it's from IWM but I can't find it in their collections anymore if someone can help?) - [​IMG]

    Smudge
     
  2. Smudge

    Smudge Member

    ...well it did have a photo attached :(

    Will have to try again

    Smudge
     
  3. Buteman

    Buteman 336/102 LAA Regiment (7 Lincolns), RA

    There were 4 Batteries in an A/T Regt. In the NH's case, 99, 107, 288 & 289. There were 3 Troops per Battery. The troops were normally given letters from A to L. I can't see from the war diary which troops were allocated to what battery.

    Looks like a Valentine SP. The 46 TAC sign is correct for the unit. Can't see from the photo which Division it is on the Roundel to the right front of the SP. They were with 50 Division until November 1944 and 15 Scottish thereafter. Might be 15 Scottish.

    edit: An after action report from Sept 1944 tells that some of the troop letters are M, O & P.
     
  4. KevinT

    KevinT Senior Member

    That is 15th Scottish

    cheers

    Kevin


     
  5. KevinT

    KevinT Senior Member

    This any help Smudge?


    http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/search

    cheers

    Kevin

     
  6. AB64

    AB64 Senior Member

    Not sure if this is any use but a couple more pics of 102nd Archers and a couple of shots showing the 46 sign, these came amongst the photos of a medical officer who was part of the unit.

    Alistair
     

    Attached Files:

    Owen likes this.
  7. AB64

    AB64 Senior Member

    Some more pics relating to the unit, this time from a REME fitter who was attached - the first 2 show the 46, the 3rd has "L troop" on the sign so guessing its L troop on teh original picture and on the first 2 on this post it may be A Troop.

    Alistair
     

    Attached Files:

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    Owen likes this.
  8. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    I clicked link & got the 'search' page .

    to add pic to thread right click photo on IWM site, box pops up with embed codes in, copy & paste one of them.
    [​IMG]
    THE BRITISH ARMY IN NORTH-WEST EUROPE 1944-45. © IWM (BU 3478)IWM Non Commercial Licence
     
  9. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    *
    It is, both, definitely 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Tank Regiment and during their time with the 15th (Scottish) Division; so post 30 November 1944.

    For D-Day and their time in NW Europe with Fifty Div their Establishment was the 99, 107, 288 & 289 Btys (designated 'A', 'B', 'C' and 'D' respectively), each with one troop of M10's and two of towed six-pounders - towed originally by Lloyd Carriers.

    Following their transfer to the 15th (Scottish) Division a reorganisation and refit took place. 'A' Bty became the reserve Bty, and 'B', 'C' and 'D' Btys were affiliated with the 44th, 46th and 227th Infantry Brigades respectively, with the M10's being replaced by Valentine SPs.

    At approx. start March 1945, 'A' Btys two six-pounder troops were converted to Valentine SPs, making it totally SP. Additionally, 'B', 'C' and 'D' Btys were forced to hand in their six-pounders and take on towed seventeen-pounders instead, making each of these Bty's - one troop SP and two towed seventeen-pounders.

    So, any photograph of the 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Tank Regiment with a Valentine SP has to be during their time with 15th (Scottish) Division.

    I have not got any definitive information on the 'L' troop designation as yet, but will revert if I can positively identify it.

    Best,

    Steve.
     
    Aixman likes this.
  10. Smudge

    Smudge Member

    Hi guys

    Thanks for the great info, and the help. Sorry for not doing this sooner but my laptop as been poorly.

    Any ideas behind the NH tac sign...blue on blue and not red on blue? I'm surmising it goes back to their cavalry days, maybe old regimental colours? I noticed they also wore two arm of service strips on their BD...normal RAC and a two tone blue one underneath it

    So...L1 would be the first gun in L Troop? How many guns were there in a troop?

    Cheers

    Smudge
     
  11. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

  12. Smudge

    Smudge Member

  13. mapshooter

    mapshooter Senior Member

    I hadn't realised that anti-tank regts did not conform to normal RA practice and designate their batteries P, Q, R and S.

    Troops were normally lettered from A in the senior (P) battery through to whatever letter in the junior bty.

    Troops were divided into sections of two guns, left and right.

    Guns (or more precisely sub-sections) were normally lettered within the battery so in a 12 gun anti-tank bty there would be a L sub-sect in each battery. In field arty in action guns were assigned a number from left to right specific to the gun position.

    Not sure what the '1' suffix signifies, one possibility is L2 signifies L sub-sect ammo vehicle, but I'm not sure that they had these.
     
  14. Helenmcg

    Helenmcg New Member

    Hi I have today been to the National Archives and was able to read three files relating to the Northumberland Hussars as my father was part of that Regiment in the Second World War. I found it difficult to relate his papers to those of the Diaries as my father's papers refer to various Unit's/Battalions as XL(I), XL(II), XL (II) (VI), XL FLD. Does anyone know how to read these. Also he was with X List BDRA in 1941. I found a file for X Sudan Art reg would this be the same?

    Thank you

    Helen
     
  15. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Helen,

    The 'X' List or 'XL' may refer to periods of illness or when wounded; see link: http://ww2talk.com/forums/topic/15663-x-lists-service-records/?hl=lists The Regiment served in the Western Desert, Greece and Crete during 1941 and he may well have been through some really tough times...

    If you could post his service records and any other information you wish to share up onto this thread I/other forum members should be able to assist you with some insights?!

    Best,

    Steve.
     
  16. Helenmcg

    Helenmcg New Member

    Hi Steve

    Thank you for getting back to me.

    I attach some of my Dad' service record X does make sense as well as the SOS.
     
  17. Helenmcg

    Helenmcg New Member

    Hi Steve

    These are a couple of pages from my Dad's service records

    Helen
     

    Attached Files:

  18. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Helen,

    The two pages of your Dad's service records you posted show that he trained with the 211th AA Training Regiment, RA and was then posted to the 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Light Anti-Aircraft and Anti-Tank Regiment, RA on 16 July 1940; one would have thought to be an AA = Anti-Aircraft Gunner.

    He embarked UK on 13 November 1940 and sailed with the Regiment to Port Said, Egypt, which he/they reached on 31 December 1940. They went by train straight to Tahag near Tel-el-Kebir (circa 70 miles from Cairo).

    The Regiment was put on standby for a move to Greece on circa 13 January 1941 and moved to Amariya in preparation for this. The move to Greece was postponed twice.

    In the meantime, on circa 7 February 1941 'A' Bty was permanently detached and led a separate existence to the rest of the Regiment for the duration of WWII, as 274th (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Aircraft Bty, RA. What remained was renamed 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Tank Regiment, RA. One would have thought your Dad as an AA Gunner would have left with 'A' Bty, but it appears he remained as an Anti-Tank Gunner. This should mean that he was in 'B' Bty, as they had to retrain from an Anti-Aircraft to an Anti-Tank role, but I don't believe he was as 'B' Bty did not embark for Greece until 1 April 1941 and your dad embarked on 6 March 1941. He must have been in 'C' or 'D' Bty.

    The Regiment finally embarked for Greece on the RN Crusier 'Gloucester' on 6 March 1941, arriving in Piraeus on 7 March 1941.

    He would have been involved in the Regiment's fighting in Greece... but the Regiment, along with all other British forces, were forced to withdraw from Greece after about 7 weeks. Your Dad embarked Greece on 27 April arriving Egypt on 29 April 1941.

    NB. Some of the Regiment - 11 Officers and 269 Other Ranks - were landed in Crete instead and ended up fighting as infantry there when the Germans invaded.

    It appears that on his return from Greece your Dad was unwell for a long time and spent some of it in 63 General Hospital - this was at Cairo (Helmiah).

    From circa 13 December 1941 until he was SOS (struck off strength), RA, MEF (Middle East Force) and embarked for the UK on the 11 May 1945, he appears to have been posted to BDRA (Base Depot Royal Artillery) and carried out various duties, e.g. time (possibly guard duty) at 304 PoW Camp, Internee Camp Fayed, 380 PoW Camp and HQ 80 Sub-Area.

    I am concious that I haven't provided much information about his time in Greece, i.e. when he was fighting. If you would like some details of his journey there please let me know!

    Best,

    Steve.
     
  19. Helenmcg

    Helenmcg New Member

    Hi Steve

    Thank you so much for the information. Yes I would like to know about Greece. I was only able to find War Diaries relating to 1942/43 yesterday. Will have to see if I can locate the earlier ones next time I go to The National Archives.

    I have just spoken to my mother re dad's hospital stay. The story is that when possibly leaving Greece (would they have gone through Albania as I seem to recall my dad mentioning that) he had to fire a Bren gun at a German plane from his shoulder whilst travelling down a mountain. His ears were badly damaged which is probably why he was hospitalised. He then went back to the front but again brought back and was put in the Officers Mess. He also mentioned that he was on duty at a POW camp. Do you know whether medical info was kept and is so are they accessible to us.

    Thank you once agai
    Helen
     

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