X Super Heavy Battery RCA, 1940

Discussion in 'Canadian' started by phylo_roadking, Oct 29, 2014.

  1. phylo_roadking

    phylo_roadking Very Senior Member

    Hi all - this was a short lived...only four months...super heavy battery manning a pair of 9.2inch railway guns in Kent in 1940 and into 1941.

    From a (very) few net sources and some literary ones I've put together a so-far "thin" and tentative history...

    Gen. McNaughton was asked to supply any Canadian artillery personnel available from the artillery holing units in the Uk in the summer of 1940 to help man some of the railway guns that were being turned out of storage depots and railway yards. Several had been refurbished and sent to France with the BEF - where they were lost...but there were quite a few more in store, seemingly a number that were still being constructed or were under test as of 1918 and the Armistice. Thankfully, they survived two decades of neglect...

    Anyway - a order was sent out to the artillery holding units in the first week of September 1940...and some time later "X" Super Heavy Battery seems to have come together with its first HQ being at Littlestone in Kent - the east coast of Romney Marsh, actually!

    A couple of other references indicate that the "X" Battery...which had a WWI career...was shortlived in 1940 - it was "operational" for only four months...and was deactivated in February 1941, its guns being handed over to a British-manned Super Heavy battery. Working backwards from February therefore...it appears that it was made operational in October 1940, and its HQ shifted to Kingsnorth near Ashford...and the guns themselves are often referred to in discussions of the Cross Channel Artillery Duel as being positioned on a siding in Golden Wood, a piece of woodland south of Ashford near Ruckinge....and looking at the 1940 overlay on GoogleEarth, there is indeed the trace of an old siding off the main line as it runs through Golden Wood.

    There was also...as in WWI...a "Y" Battery - which had a much longer WWII career, morphing into an AGRA for 1944/45, but formed at the same time in September 1940. Both Batteries were actually rostered under the command of the 3rd Super Heavy Regiment RA at the time.

    And that is as far as I've got so far. Obviously, any actual files or war diaries for this unit are in Canada, so I won't be perusing THOSE soon!

    Can anyone confirm the various dates above, or add any detail?
  2. Rob Dickers

    Rob Dickers 10th MEDIUM REGT RA

    Here are 2 pages of 3rd S/H Regt which refer to X and Y S/H Btys RCA.
    Buteman likes this.
  3. phylo_roadking

    phylo_roadking Very Senior Member


    Thanks for that Rob. There are a LOT of lists of British coastal and railway artillery floating around the net, and many of them get dragged into discussions on Sealion, obviously. But that is the only dated reference I have for the X Battery's being located in Golden Wood...I.E. when they came under the command of 3rd Super Heavy Regiment on the 1st day of November on that unit's creation.
  4. Andreas

    Andreas Working on two books

  5. Rob Dickers

    Rob Dickers 10th MEDIUM REGT RA

    'Y' Super-Heavy Bty RCA detached from 3rd S/Hvy Regt RA Dec1940
    Became a Bty of the 2nd S/Hvy Regt RA on 1st Jan1941.


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