4th Battalion Royal Tank Corps Photos 1929 -41

Discussion in 'RAC & RTR' started by Ian Green, Mar 10, 2021.

  1. Ian Green

    Ian Green Member

    I have recently been passed a small selection of photos belonging to my Grandad from his time in the RTC. I have done some work to restore them and improve the presentation. My Grandad features in many but not all the pictures and few have any background information.



    1930 - guard Mounting


    France 1940

    1929 joining up

    March 1941

    P8.jpg Jerusalem 1943 with 42nd Armoured division?


    Story unknown - bomb disposal?

    P11.jpg Early 1930's

    P12.jpg Undated (1941?)

    Tobruk December 1941
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  2. JimHerriot

    JimHerriot Ready for Anything

    Fantastic stuff Ian, thanks for posting these up, very much appreciated.

    Kind regards, always,

  3. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    I have readily found this on the 42nd Armoured Division here:
    Link: Disbanded units

    Wiki states the division never left the UK and the list of assigned units does not include the 4th Bn. Royal Tank Corps.
    Link: 42nd Armoured Division (United Kingdom) and British armoured formations of World War II

    Link: 42nd (East Lancashire) Infantry Division

    This one refers to the unit itself, which was at Tobruk, when it was destroyed: Annex G – Battle Honours and Historical Boards
    and there are about forty other hist when searching with "4th Battalion Royal Tank Corps".
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  4. Gazz

    Gazz Active Member

    Brilliant photos Ian, My Dad features on a few with the one from France 1940 that I have never seen before. Thanks for posting they are very interesting.
    Cheers Gary
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  5. LondonNik

    LondonNik Senior Member

    Gazz - now you've got us guessing which one was your dad? Did he go to France in 1939? I ask because he may appear on my 'list' for 4RTR in France (compiled from a number of sources!) I'd be interested to hear more.

    Best regards, Nick
  6. LondonNik

    LondonNik Senior Member

    Ian - great photos, thanks for posting. There's no doubt about 4RTC as it was then, as the medium tank in the photo has a huge 'eye' on the turret. 4RTC still had mediums during the move down to Catterick, and possibly well into 1939 although there are no official records about those days.

    Alas - the gentlemen posing around the tank have obscured its name and the tactical sign so we can't attempt to guess to which company the men may have belonged.

    The photo in France is intriguing - we can't make a stab at where it was taken as the company's of the battalion were billetted in and around several villages between October 1939 and May 1940 - famously in and around Acq to begin with which is where some official film and photographs were taken (now at the IWM). Shirtsleeves says it probably isn't the depths of winter though which may help to date it.

    Great stuff, best regards, Nick
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  7. Gazz

    Gazz Active Member

    My Dad Corporal John E Weir is stood on the left of the France 1930 photo, and 2nd from the left on the last 2. He was with the BEF and evacuated from Dunkirk. I have swapped correspondence with Ian (the OP) who's Grandad is featured, they both had similar military careers until Dad got captured at Tobruk. It was this wonderful forum that helped us find the info. I have some pre-war pics that I will post on here when I get the chance.
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  8. Gazz

    Gazz Active Member

    Bovington 1936
    Date on back April1935
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  9. Ian Green

    Ian Green Member

    Really good photos Gary.

    Thanks also to Nick for the info and insights - I am building a timeline of Grandads service and every detail helps it along!


  10. LondonNik

    LondonNik Senior Member

    Great Photos Gary,

    I think I've seen the first photo (Bovington 1936) before - is that your dad on the right?

    And which one is your dad in the lower photo (April 1935)?

    I've got an entry on my database from the 1939 embarkation list for 4RTks - 554359 Private J Weir Battalion Headquarters Company, and he is named in some orders for the entraining as 'cook' - is this the same J Weir as your dad?

    It would be great to hear anything that your dad may have told you about his time in France - who his mates were, officers, locations, what he got up too etc. If you don't want to post it all, feel free to PM me.

    Best, Nick
  11. Gazz

    Gazz Active Member

    Yes Nick Dad is on the right on the top photo and left on the bottom one, it would be interesting to know if you could locate where you had seen that photo before as this is the first time I have posted these, Maybe the other trooper was the subject of that posting?. I have his certificate of service and it says he passed a cooks course on 10/7/1936 and the war diary for the BEF has him listed as a private/cook at that time. He did not say much about his time in France but he did say he was at Dunkirk and the ship he was on was attacked by German fighters with some casualties after a bit of research I think it may have been the Mona's Isle or possibly the King Orry.
  12. LondonNik

    LondonNik Senior Member

    Hi Gary - many thanks for the information. I saw the photo a couple of years back when I was talking to the family of another 7 RTks Veteran named Bob Edge - it's great to be able to name two men from the same photo and put a date to it too!

    Yes, you're right that most of the men from 7RTks came home from Dunkirk on Mona's Isle and King Orry - it sounds like your dad was on Mona's Isle. Any recollections from what your dad said about that would be great to read.

    Thanks again for sharing, best regards,

  13. Gazz

    Gazz Active Member

    Hi Nick,
    Like I said before Dad didn't say much about his time in France all I remember him telling me is that they embarked from Dunkirk and were then attacked by German fighters, he managed to dive for cover and a round went right through his kit bag left on the deck and mangled a tin of cigarettes he had 'liberated' from France. he said there were casualties and if he hadn't of moved I would not be here.

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