Can anyone help me ? 4 RHA

Discussion in 'Royal Artillery' started by Grossbart40, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. Grossbart40

    Grossbart40 Member

    Hello to all, I am a new member researching my grandfathers military history. And would be most grateful if anyone has any information regarding the following:
    I have obtained his Army records which are very confusing.
    It states 25/7/39 posted overseas Palestine (unit) 1 Field Regiment then underneath x2, 4 RHA,13 RHA , 90 Field, 50 RHU, 53RHU,54RHU

    He served with RHA Palestine, North Africa from 1939 - 1943 and BAOR TO 1947

    Any information or advice would be most appreciated.
  2. 4jonboy

    4jonboy Daughter of a 56 Recce Patron

    Hello and welcome to the forum.
    Can you please scan and post the records if they are not too personal. Members will be able to help more if they see the documents and provide more information for you.

    RHU= Reinforcement holding unit
    RHA =Royal Horse Artillery
    BOAR=British Army of the Rhine

    Grossbart40 likes this.
  3. Grossbart40

    Grossbart40 Member

    Hello Lesley
    Thank you for that, much appreciated.

  4. Grossbart40

    Grossbart40 Member

  5. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    Hi Paul,

    looking at that card it looks like he rejoined the 4 RHA in Oct 41, perhaps due to:

    16 October 1941
    RHQ and “C” Bty RHA returned to previous positions as at 3 Oct 41.
    REORGANISATION OF REGIMENT ON THREE BTY BASIS, each Bty having 2 Tps of 4 guns.
    The new Bty being called Jerboa Bty in the absence of any official notification on the subject. The Tps were named “C” and “D” Tps. The actual transfer of personnel and equipment was carried out on 13th Oct, the final date of reorganisation being 16.10.41. Officers were re-distributed as follows, Major P.T. O’Brien Butler RHA assuming comd of Jerboa Bty, from date of arrival. It was later understood that this Bty was to be referred to as DD Bty RHA.
    The undermentioned officers joined the Regt:
    Capt. J.C.D. Howland, R.H.A. (13.10.41) 2/Lieut. E.J. Dainty, R.H.A. (13.10.41)
    Lieut. A.A. Banks, R.H.A. (13.10.41) 2/Lieut. J.A. Harding, R.H.A. (13.10.41)
    Lieut. I.L. Young, R.H.A. (13.10.41) 2/Lieut. C.E.B.B. Simpson RHA (13.10.41)
    2/Lieut. C.A. Collins, R.H.A. (13.10.41)
    Together with some 120 reinforcements. Appx B
    As a result of this re-organisation, the whole of “C” Bty came under comd of STEEPLE Coln (Comd of Coln being Major H.W.L. Cowan RHA) and Jerboa Bty took up positions under CHASE Coln. Pending the arrival of Major O’Brien Butler, Major Christopher formed and assumed comd of Jerboa Bty.

    This extract is taken from the war diary for 4th RHA which is posted on here somewhere I think.


  6. Bluebell Minor

    Bluebell Minor Junior Member


    My main interest is the immediate post war BAOR but I offer the following thoughts (as you commented the Record of Service card is confusing)

    I believe your grandfather joined 90 Field Regiment in Normandy shortly after the DDay Landings in July 1944. The Regiment were in support of the famous 50 Tyne Tees Division and were to remain so till the Division was disbanded as a Fighting Formation in November 1944. The veterans (including my late father in law) returned to the UK to form a Training Cadre. Others( including 90 Field Regiment) remained in Southern Holland as the British contribution to the Canadian Corps

    In May 1945 as part of a three way switch involving Bristish, Canadian and American units 90 Field Regiment left Holland and moved to the small industrial town of Lunen to the north of Dortmund until disbanded in late Spring 1946 when your grandfather was posted to 50 RHU located in Ripon Barracks Bielefeld

    Not sure what the entries with a Roman Numeral and Capital letter mean but it looks as if your grandfather was sent on detachment to Headquarters Control Commission Germany (HQ CCG) in July 1946 until he returned to the UK and civilian life in Spring 1947. A small element of HQ CCG was based in the Spa town of Bad Oeynhausen, the majority were in satellite Headquarters in the nearby towns of Bad Salzuflen, Herford, Lemgo and Lohne

    Should you want further information on 90 Field Regiment) there are two excellent sites (which include photographs)

    a. Philip Reinder's (a contributor to this site) Royal Artillery Units Netherlands 1944-1945
    and b. which is the wartime memories of a young officer who served in 90 Field.

    Hope this is useful
  7. Historic Steve

    Historic Steve Researching 21 Army Group/BAOR post VE day

    My research is strictly post May 45 but have dug the following out

    90th (1st City of London) Field Regiment RA became part of 49th Artillery Bde formally HQRA 49th (West Riding) Infantry Division, they were in the Roosedaal, Holland on VE day moving to Dortmund, then Bochum finally Lünen north of Dortmund and disbanded May 46

    50 Reinforcement Holding Unit was Ripon Barracks formally Bulow Kaserne in Bielefeld, from there he moved to HQ Central Control Commission in Bad Salzuflen or Bad Oeynhausen, but seemed to have got busted for going absent without leave for Christmas 1946!

    If you contact and request a copy of the Polar Bear Newspaper dated Fri 22 Feb 46, you find the history of 90th (1st City of London) Field Regiment RA with locations and dates, they appear to have been command 1 Corps Troops after leaving 50th Infantry Division

    Hope this helps
  8. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Paul,

    Welcome to the forum...

    As per Bluebell Minor's message (#6), here are the links to further information on the 90th Field Regiment, RA:

    1. To the relevant part of Phil's site: covering its time in The Netherlands;
    2. To the Oliver Perks blog:;

    Also, a prior thread about the regiment:

    There is also a Regimental History called 'History of 90th (City of London) Field Regiment RA in the Second World War 1939-1945-1946'.

    I may also have some information about 4RHA, as a Bty of the 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Tank Regiment were attached to them for a long while in the Western Desert. I have the latter's Regimental History and I am happy to have a look at this for information for you if you wish...


  9. Bluebell Minor

    Bluebell Minor Junior Member

    Steve Mac

    Thank you for tweaking the information in my original message
  10. Historic Steve

    Historic Steve Researching 21 Army Group/BAOR post VE day last post should read "HQ Control Commission Germany"
  11. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Paul,

    I looked up the 4RHA/102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Tank Regiment link... 'D' Bty, 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Anti-Tank Regiment was attached to 4RHA from 23 March to 5 September 1942, which coincides with part of your grandfather's time with 4RHA, namely, 27 May 1941 (?) to circa 27 September 1943. There is a whole chapter in the 'History of the Northumberland Hussars Yeomanry 1924 -1949' (Bright) devoted to this period. If you wish me to look up any information in this respect for you please just ask.

    I am sure that the entry on 'Card2' at Message #4 covering his leaving 4RHA, says "Evac to UK", rather than 'Embarked ****** for UK'. Wiki has 4RHA returning to the UK from N Africa in July 1943 and I am wondering if your grandfather was either wounded or ill at this time. The portion of his service record you posted does not appear to me to elaborate in any way about this!?! Do you have his FULL service record? There may be information therein that sheds light on matters...


  12. Grossbart40

    Grossbart40 Member

    Hello to all that have responded and a big thank you for your information and time.
    I do have other pages from service record etc which I shall post as soon as poss.
    Many Thanks
  13. Grossbart40

    Grossbart40 Member

    More info on my Grandfathers Artillery history.

    Once again a big thank you for your help and replies,


    Attached Files:

  14. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Paul,

    This is what I can discern from the four pages you have posted from your grandfather’s service records.

    25 July 1939: Posted to & proceeded to Palestine or Egypt – 27/28 Medium Bty, 7th Medium Regiment, RA – Rank: Gunner
    31 Mar 1941: Admitted hospital (Egypt)
    10 Apr 1941: Discharged hospital
    30 Apr 1941: Posted – 25th Field Regiment, RA (Egypt)
    27 May 1941: Posted – 4th Royal Horse Artillery, RA (Egypt)
    08 Jul 1941: Admitted hospital (Egypt)
    06 Oct 1941: Discharged hospital
    07 Jun 1942: Promoted paid acting Lance Bombardier
    24 Sep 1942: Deprived of rank of acting Lance Bombardier and under close arrest for being Absent Without Leave 17 Sep to 19 Sep 1942
    30 Sep 1942: Admitted hospital (Egypt)
    21 Oct 1942: Discharged hospital
    01 Aug 1943: 4th Royal Horse Artillery is SOS (struck off strength) Middle East Force and TOS (taken on strength) ???
    NB. We know from prior postings that 4RHA returned to the UK around this time, but it looks like your grandfather did not travel with them. No information about a new posting.
    19 Sep 1943: Awarded 7 days field punishment for drunkenness on 18 Sep 1943.
    27 Sep 1943: Evacuated UK under s169 (?not sure about wording or reference in italics)
    09 Oct 1943: Disembarked UK to Depot, RA (Home)
    08 Nov 1943: Admitted Royal Herbert Hospital, Woolwich
    23 Dec 1943: Discharged hospital
    23 Dec 1943: Posted 13th Royal Horse Artillery, RA (Home)
    10 Jan 1944: Entitlement to Africa Star with 8th Army clasp recorded
    24 Jan 1944: Admitted Military Hospital, Catterick (North Yorkshire)
    02 Feb 1944: Discharged hospital
    20 Apr 1944: Admitted Connaught Hospital, Knaphill, Woking
    10 May 1944: Discharged hospital
    10 May 1944: Posted 30th Reinforcement Holding Unit (Home)
    30 Jul 1944: Posted 90th Field Regiment, RA (NW Europe)
    03 Aug 1945: Sick
    03 Nov 1945: Sick
    30 Apr 1946: Posted 50th Reinforcement Holding Unit (? Location ?)
    01 Nov 1946: Promoted paid acting Lance Bombardier
    23 Dec 1946: Relinquished rank of acting Lance Bombardier for being Absent Without Leave 23 Dec 1946
    31 Mar 1947: Still attached 50th Reinforcement Holding Unit (?)


    1. There is a little doubt about the exactness of some of the dates, as one record contradicts another. However, they are close.
    2. The first page of records you posted at Message # 13 appears to be a ‘reconstructed’ record, as you will notice that the handwriting is that of the same clerk up to 9 October 1943. May be your grandfather’s original records had not kept up with his evacuation back to the UK at this time.
    3. The reference to 'Palestine' in this first page ‘reconstruction’ may be incorrect, as there is no other record of him being there or moving from there; rather he was likely in Egypt. The 27/28 Medium Bty, 7th Medium Regiment, RA, orbit (see link within link at 4 below) suggests they were in Egypt from September 1939.
    4. Here is a forum link to information regarding 27/28 Medium Bty, 7th Medium Regiment, RA: There are more links therein, which themselves contain further information.

    I trust this all assists.


  15. Grossbart40

    Grossbart40 Member

    That's great Steve many thanks.
    looks like he was a bit of a lad
    Thanks again I would never have understood it all you have been a great help.
  16. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    Hello Paul,

    He went AWL twice for a total of, what looks like, four days and was 'caught' drunk once. Given that he was serving overseas with units that were ostensibly 'facing the enemy' for all but 9 months of WWII up to VE Day, whilst not a perfect record it is not that bad either.

    Did you notice that his two AWL's coincide with his promotions? Maybe he didn't like the responsibility...

    He was in and out of hospital a lot, but there were some nasty ailments out in the Western Desert; see link: ... Maybe he suffered with something like jaundice or sand fly fever. Do you have any information on his illness(es)?

    It wasn't unusual for units that had served overseas to have frequently ill troops. When he joined 90th Field Regiment, RA, and the others of the well travelled 50th (Northumbrian) Division in NW Europe, he was joining troops who had also served in the Western Desert and Sicily; and Fifty Div had many recurring malaria sufferers from their time in Sicily.



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