C.E. Home Forces 1941

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by OldSoldierSahib, Dec 25, 2019.

  1. I have recently purchased a photo of senior officers - Lt-Cols, Cols, Brigs etc - who attended a "Conference of C.E.S. and C.R.E.s held by C.E. Home Forces" at Aldershot on the 7th November 1941.

    It's a basic question from me. Can someone please give me the expansion of those acronyms?

    The supplementary question is, does anyone have more detail on what the conference was all about, please?
  2. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    C.E. = Chief Engineer

    C.R.E. = Commander Royal Engineers


  3. Tom, many thanks.
  4. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Reading various material on Britain's home defences it is clear that from spring 1941 onwards ideas on defence changed several times and there was a move away from a linear defence system (stop lines) towards different systems (eg anti tank islands) which altered the nature of the installations built and where they were located. A number of conferences and meetings were held to discuss this during the year and your photo could be one of these.
  5. Interesting, thanks Robert. I'll post the photo here once I can scan a better copy of it than I currently have.
  6. gaspirator

    gaspirator Member

    I'd be very interested to see the photo if you're able to post it; I may be able to help...
  7. Thanks for the reminder, gaspirator. Uploading photos here seems to be a bit of a palaver and so instead I have written a short blog post on my British Army Ancestors website, here: CE Home Forces - Aldershot 1941. I hope this is sufficient, but if it isn't please let me know.
    Charley Fortnum likes this.
  8. gaspirator

    gaspirator Member

    Thanks - very interesting! Apologies for the delay in responding - forgot to 'watch' the thread.

    I found the minutes of the Aldershot conference in the files of the CRE Home Forces (TNA WO 166/12); it's 23 pages, so I've posted just the contents as it sums up nicely what was discussed.

    There's also a list of attendees; counting the heads in your photo, it looks like there's 86 (I may be wrong). The minutes list 87 names, so somebody seemingly had to rush off before the photo was taken. The list also identifies the appointment of each person as to which Command/Corps/Division, which may be of interest.

    Hope this helps!

    - Pete

    Attached Files:

    timuk and Charley Fortnum like this.
  9. Pete, thank you for your very helpful response. Coincidentally I was looking at these men yesterday and just doing the first steps basic research of filling in first names. As you might expect, a number of them had illustrious careers and more than one appear in the collection at The National Portrait Gallery. Much more work to be done, but I what you have sent us very helpful. I am a fairly regular visitor to TNA, I was there last night for instance, and soI may call up this file in future.

  10. Incidentally, I make it 86 names as well. Here's my list, very early stages of a work in progress:

    Fifth row [14]:
    Lt-Col W H Blagden
    Lt-Col W McM Keane
    Maj B J Ashwell MC
    Lt-Col E H T Gayer OBE
    Lt-Col G H Whyte MC, VD, RCE
    Lt-Col L F Barnes RCE
    Lt-Col A T McLean MC, VD, RCE
    Lt-Col A B Connelly RCE
    Lt-Col J L Melville MC, RCE
    Lt-Col W H G Costello
    Lt-Col C E T Jones MC
    Maj R I Musson MC
    Lt-Col R L Willott DSO
    Lt-Col F K Stranack MC

    Fourth row [15]:
    Lt-Col F W T Hards
    Lt-Col A G McNeill MC
    Lt-Col W W Boggs
    Maj L H Stowell
    Lt-Col AL Green
    Lt-Col S C P Drury DCM, TD
    Lt-Col R A V G E S Monteith
    Lt-Col T F Hood
    Lt-Col C J Gardiner DSO
    Lt-Col R E Keelan MC, TD
    Lt-Col D F Brown
    Lt-Col W H MacKenzie MBE, TD
    Lt-Col E A E Bolton
    Lt-Col R W F Poole OBE, MC
    Maj R E Lloyd

    Third row [18]:
    Brigadier W H H Aitken
    Lt-Col E A L Gueterbock
    Lt-Col E W B Harte
    Lt-Col F W L McC Parker
    Lt-Col B C Davey
    Lt-Col E G Bailey
    Lt-Col J C Walkey
    Lt-Col F H Foster
    Lt-Col W E Dewdney
    Lt-Col C T Edwards
    Lt-Col F C Nottingham
    Lt-Col H T S King OBE
    Lt-Col H W Giblin
    Lt-Col E M Blake MBE
    Lt-Col M R Caldwell
    Lt-Col E A Gough
    Lt-Col W J Dynes MBE
    Brigadier R M H Lewis MC

    Second Row [22]:
    Col E E Nott-Bower OBE, MC
    Brigadier N C D Brownjohn OBE, MC
    Col J K Tickell
    Col N S Henshaw OBE, MC, TD
    Brigadier W H Stratton
    Lt-Col A W G Dobbie
    Lt-Col R P G Anderson
    Lt-Col C E A Browning MC
    Lt-Col W A Turner MC
    Brigadier C S L Hertzberg MC, VD, RCE
    Brigadier H E Moore DSO, MC
    Col B C T Freeland
    Lt-Col E V Binney DSO
    Lt-Col V F Craig MC
    Lt-Col R E Wood
    Col A E White
    Lt-Col P F Foley
    Lt-Col G S Castle MC, TD
    Lt-Col R StC Davidson
    Brigadier J E Chippindall CBE, MC
    Lt-Col R W Urquhart
    Lt-Col F L Stroud

    Front row [17]:
    Brigadier Norman Annesley Coxwell Rogers DSO, OBE (1896-1985)
    Brigadier Bryan Trevor Godfrey-Faussett OBE, MC (1896-1970)
    Brigadier Maurice Luby DSO, MC
    Brigadier R Briggs DSO, MC
    Brigadier Harry Genet MC
    Brigadier Richard Leigh Withington MC[1]
    Brigadier Edgar James Bernard Buchanan DSO (1892-1979)
    Brigadier John Howard Stafford OBE, MC
    Maj-Gen C J S King CBE
    Maj-Gen B K Young MC
    Brigadier Geoffrey Cathcart Gowlland
    Brigadier P W Clark CBE, DSO, MC
    Brigadier W A FitzG Kerrick DSO, MC
    Brigadier John Drummond Inglis OBE, MC (1895-1985)
    Brigadier A Mason MC
    Brigadier G M Edwards DSO
    Brigadier C C Phipps CBE MC

    [1] Medals sold by DNW in 2007: Lot 854, 21 September 2007 | Dix Noonan Webb

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