Royal Regiment of Artillery between WW1 & WW2

Discussion in 'Royal Artillery' started by CJB, Feb 11, 2016.

  1. CJB

    CJB Member

    CJB

    I am trying fond some more details of my father's army service 1928 to 1931. I have his service records.
    He enlisted with the Grenadier Guards and I believe was found to be too short (5ft 11 1/4"). After 6 days he was transferred to the RRA. He served for two years in Egypt (1929 to 1931). I have a photo album with photos obviously taken in Egypt some titled Alexandria.
    I have a couple of queries :-
    - I understand the British Army were in Egypt to protect the Suez canal. Alexandria is some considerable distance from the canal.
    - One photo is titled "6th Light Battery - Helmieh". Would he not be in a Regiment?. I have an early studio photo (not dated) of him in tropical uniform wearing puttees and spurs The only insignia I can see are the Artillery lapel badges. Any thoughts ?

    When he was called back to colours in 1939, he was then put into the 53rd Worcestershire Yeomanry Anti-Tank Regiment (210 Battery) as I have said in other forums on the site.

    Charlie Bentley
     
  2. lostinspace

    lostinspace Junior Member

    Hi Charlie,

    I have the volume "Between the Wars, 1919-1939" by Maj. Gen. B.P. Hughes (part of the History of the Royal Regiment of Artillery), and will see what I can find,

    Dave
     
  3. lostinspace

    lostinspace Junior Member

    Well, luckily the above book has the distribution list for the R.A. as of August, 1929 and shows the I Light Brigade commanded by Lt. Col. C.A.N. Hume-Spry, D.S.O. at Helmieh, Egypt with 6 (How.) Battery, 8 (How.) Battery, and 10 (How) Battery. The 6 Bty. was commanded by Major C.O'D. Preston. Annex 5 states that in 1927 British pack batteries were redesignated as light batteries. These batteries were apparently armed with 3.7-inch QF howitzers as (pages 7 and 8) indicate: "In an effort to provide a better capability experiments were then made to use light artillery for that purpose; and the units thought most suitable were the British pack brigades armed with the 3.7-inch QF howitzers. Two such brigades had existed at Home in 1920, and that number had been increased to five by 1929, one being in Egypt. By that time they had become designated light brigades...." Hope that helps, if I find anything else I'll let you know.

    Dave
     
  4. CJB

    CJB Member

    CJB

    Lostinspace - Thanks for the info. Once again tis great site has come up trumps.
    I thought you may be interested. My father put a photograph (attached) in the album I mentioned titled :-
    WINNERS ARTILLERY CUP. 1924 - 1929
    B.B.M. SPROSTON GNR BOWERING MAJOR PRESTON
    L/BDR BURNLEY L/BDR HAYMAN
    It appears the names are not in order or position.

    Thanks again

    Charlie Bentley
     

    Attached Files:

  5. lostinspace

    lostinspace Junior Member

    You're welcome Charlie, that's a great photo. I think Major Preston is in the center of the picture, might see what sort of information I can find on him through the L.G. and army lists.

    Regards,
    Dave
     
  6. CJB

    CJB Member

    Dave,

    Blimey didn't realise it is a year since we corresponded. I have been flitting between BEF, D-Day, Ardennes, Op. Varsityas I am trying to write a "book" about my father's military career. I also keep finding additional info/photos which then means more research as per below.
    Ref 6 (HOW) Battery, I have just come across a photo taken in Egypt of a group of seven including my father with 'D' SUB, Egypt hand-written on the back. I was wondering if the Batteries were split into smaller groups ie Troops or if the term SUB was an earlier term for Troop. If they were split into smaller groups, how many guns would be in each group etc.
    I was also wondering if my father would have seen any "action" whilst serving in Egypt (1929-1931). Any thoughts?

    Regards,

    Charlie
     
  7. CJB

    CJB Member

    Dave,, further to may last reply, I have noted the spelling of HELMEIH both in your info (book) and my father's photographic notes. After searching Google maps etc and finding no trace of HELMEIH in Egypt, I have found two references to an AL HELMEYAH one in Cairo and one in Alexandria. Both are areas called Governorates. My father's photos only refer to Alexandria. I was wondering if the battery 6 (HOW) would be based in Alexandria which is some distance from the Suez Canal or based in Cairo and would spend leave in Alexandria. I believe the HELMIEH spelling is the English way.
    Regards,

    Charlie
     
  8. lostinspace

    lostinspace Junior Member

  9. oxlade

    oxlade Member

    Posting here at as it seems relevant
    Royal Regiment of Artillery between WW1 & WW2
    I am researching for a distant relative John Thomas 'Jack' Blencowe born 1910 847249, Royal Artillery I have copies of pages from his army book and I can see that he enlisted in 1935 at Coventry and we know he went to Woolwich for training. He departed for Egypt on 13 Nov 1936 and was in Egypt until 23 Jul 1945 he was later in Europe and here we have a regiment 110th RA. A photo of him mounted looks like barracks in UK and couple attached of him in Egypt His number indicates I think initially RHA. I have looked for RHA or RFA units going to or in Egypt at that time and have not found anything, does anybody have either some possible clues or can direct me to an online resource to look. Jack Blencowe 847429 RA.png Jack Blencowe 1910  group.JPG
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Uncle Target

    Uncle Target Taking a break not sure when I will be back

    This might help Re 53rd Worcs Yeomanry.
    RA Regts post 1941 A sub is a sub section.
    Regt = 3 Batteries 24 guns, Battery = 8 guns, troop = 4guns , Section = 2 guns sub section 1 gun
    You often find photos of men in sub sections i.e a gun crew.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Uncle Target

    Uncle Target Taking a break not sure when I will be back

    The 53rd Worcestershire Yeomanry Cap Badge in WW2 was that of Queens Own Worcestershire Hussars see attached.
     

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  12. Chris C

    Chris C Canadian researcher

    Oxlade, there was a 110 Field Regiment RA but they do not seem to have been anywhere near Egypt - and were also TA not regular army. However if he only joined that regiment in Europe after VE Day, that would potentially fit. (British Artillery Regiments)

    There were a lot of artillery regiments that would have gone through Egypt to fight the Italians and Germans in North Africa. It would probably be more fruitful to apply for his service records if you are able to do so. (If he is a distant relative this might be more difficult?)
     

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