56th Highland Medium Regiment TA

Discussion in 'Royal Artillery' started by Dairbear, Mar 12, 2017.

  1. Dairbear

    Dairbear Member

    Hi. I have recently received my grandfather's service record. He was shipped to France January 1940, transferred to 221 battery whilst there, and captured by the Germans in may, and sent to stalag xxb (2a), then stalag xxb, then stalag 357. He arrived 14th January and was hospitalised on the 19th.
    Does anyone have any information regarding what was going on in the abbey villeins area during this Time? I have been pretty unsuccessful in finding any information on his regiment during this time.
    Also, would there be any avenues where I could find out what he was treated for in hospital?
    Thanks for any info you can give me.
  2. Dairbear

    Dairbear Member

    Sorry, that should be Abbeyville _ there's a spelling mistake on his record, so we're not sure if he was caught in cambrai, contrai (Belgium) or another place. There seems to be more questions than answers at the moment!
  3. Rob Dickers

    Rob Dickers 10th MEDIUM REGT RA

    The 56th Medium Regt RA, 174( N. Scottish ) & 221( Peterhead ) Btys were attached to 3 Corps at this time in 1940.
    Unfortunately I don't have the diary for this regt to hand at the moment, but if you PM - Drew (Andy) on here I know he has all the RA Diaries for France/Belg 1940.
    Medium Regts RA are Corps Troops, NOT Divisional.
    good luck with your research.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2017
  4. Stuart Avery

    Stuart Avery In my wagon & not a muleteer.

    Hello Dairbear, you could try & obtain a copy of the book below. Its quite small in size, but does have a detailed account of there time in question. Its an old book & it should not cost that much. About 95 pages in total. Don't buy the Divisional History by J.B. SALMOND. 51 st Highland Division.
    Clock the correct spelling of Abbeville below. The copy i have is in a bad shape ( the spine is coming away). Just to add, I don't think there is a book out there regarding 51st Medium Regiment, Royal Artillery.

    CCF12032017_0003.jpg CCF12032017_0004.jpg
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2017
  5. Dairbear

    Dairbear Member

    Many thanks for the information. I'm not sure if this book would be very helpful, as he was captured before st Valery. Our library has a copy so I'll be able to get that this week.
    I'm hoping to find out what was happening January to mid may 1940.
  6. Dairbear

    Dairbear Member

    Hi guys, could you give me a heads up on what the first column in the service record is (No of Part I I Order or other Authority) and where I can find out what the order Was?
  7. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    The "unit order" noted in the first column is the military authority for the activity subject of the entry on the soldier 's service record (B103).

    I'm not aware that hard copies of any unit (Battalion level) personnel movement orders are in existence. They will have been destroyed in accordance with the Army document destruction policies of the time - probably 10 years after the date of publication of the order.

    Steve Y
    Dairbear likes this.
  8. RCG

    RCG Senior Member, Deceased

    It’s harder to think of how to word the answer then the answer is in itself.
    So here's how I think it worked.
    Basically it is as Tullybrone has said.

    These army orders start from the top, Prime minister, Government, says he want this or that done, so it is then passed down the line to planners, generals, etc .

    A plan is drawn up and everything has to be put in place, ie troops and equipment to be in the right place at the right time.

    Next the orders are passed down to Battalion and Regiment level. Then to the men.

    So now the orders will consist of what, when, and where the men, equipment, etc needs to be and when. It comes in two parts. Part one is posted up in units of the regiment and give basic details of what is required. Every soldier is supposed to read them.

    Part 2 is just the reference number of the order and is used for administration purposes such as entered on records.

    So to find out what the order was, you have to look in column B and C.

    This example shows An Army order A/44/1644 made 17th November 1943. The soldier in question was posted to 502 Field Company Royal Engineers. It is logic to assume that the whole Platoon or company that he was in was also transferred. But not a hundred per cent.
    Column b is empty here, so you would have to go further up the column to see what unit he was transferred from.
    To find out what the actual order said, would be difficult to find out, so it is easier to use the dates and were the soldier went to after the order.

    Other authority could be War Department and various Ministry departments dealing with the war.
    Dairbear and bofors like this.
  9. Dairbear

    Dairbear Member

    Thanks guys - the replies are much appreciated. Funnily enough the references in his record early on are just 2 numbers / the year! ie 54/39 (when he was promoted), 75/39 when it was granted, 22/40 when he was posted etc.The longer references start appearing once he was captured and his stalag transfers.

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