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Remembered Today:

Northumbrian Gunner meanderings

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RFA Battery Engagement

RFA Battery Engagement

Film of an 18 pounder battery conducting an engagement. Interesting camouflaged position along a tree line. Well prepared gun pits and ammunition delivered in ammunition pannier jackets, one way to disguise ammunition supply so tracks are not left by the limbers.     An observation officer of Royal Field Artillery orders to open fire on Germans during World War I in France. An observation officer of Royal Field Artillery orders on phone to open fire on Germans during

ianjonesncl

ianjonesncl

Hartley Railway Gun

Hartley Railway Gun

An account from The North Eastern Railway In the First World War (Rob Langham / ISBN-978-1-78155-081-6)  outlines the presence of a rail gun at Hartley on the Northumberland Coast , 10 km (8 miles) north of Tynemouth.     The gun was deployed on the Collywell Bay Branch line which was in the process of completion as war broke out in August 1914, and the project was halted.       Source: http://www.disused-stations.org.uk/b

ianjonesncl

ianjonesncl

Gunners shoot down Zeppelin L15 - Well Hit

Gunners shoot down Zeppelin L15 - Well Hit

A query from a friend about anti-aircraft artillery in WW1 lead to a realisation that the first Zeppelin successfully shot down was actually the result of anti-aircraft fire from the Gunners. Zeppelin L15 was brought down on the night of 31st March / 1st April 1916, ahead of the action of William Leefe Robinson on the 2nd September 1916, for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross.   At the start of the First World War there was no Anti-Aircraft organisation beyond a few guns and an a

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ianjonesncl

No 1 Camel Battery RGA

No 1 Camel Battery RGA

More camel artillery - this time in Aden. No 1 Camel Battery Royal Garrison Artillery     Aden, located near the entrance to the Red Sea, was vital for the security of the route through the Suez Canal. The port came under British control in 1838 as a base on the route to India. In gained increased prominence with the opening of the  Suez Canal in 1869. The Ottoman Empire seized control of Yemen to the north, whilst Britain established protectorates with local rulers in the Ad

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ianjonesncl

Ubique - Our Gunners in the Great War

Ubique - Our Gunners in the Great War

Many thanks to fellow GWF Blogger Edward Walshe for a film on his YouTube Channel - Ubique 1916 1917.   © IWM (IWM 430) UBIQUE - OUR GUNNERS IN THE GREAT WAR [MAIN TITLE] The work of the Royal Field Artillery and Royal Garrison Artillery, mainly on the Western Front, 1916-1917. Drivers water their horses at a trough. A brigade of RFA 18-pounders moves off from their camp ground. Other 18-pounders move past dead Highlanders (from IWM 191 BATTLE OF THE SOMME). A battery of 18-pound

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ianjonesncl

Albert Communal Cemetery - 41st (Durham) Siege Battery RGA

Albert Communal Cemetery - 41st (Durham) Siege Battery RGA

Recent research into camel artillery and the mountain battery of the Hong Kong and Singapore Royal Garrison Artillery recalled a connection to Northumbrian Gunners.   In the Albert Communal Cemetery extension there is a communal grave of 12 soldiers, 11 Gunners from the 41st Siege Battery RGA, and 1 attached from the Army Service Corps.     The 41st Siege Battery was formed under Major H.C. Hall at Lydd 6th July 1915. It was composed of regular gunners from the Hong Kong

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ianjonesncl

RGA - Singapore Mutiny 1915

RGA - Singapore Mutiny 1915

Whilst researching Royal Garrison Artillery units I came across a commemoration to Gunners who had been killed during a Mutiny in Singapore in February 1915.    The Royal Garrison Artillery (RGA) operated the coastal guns that protected Singapore. They were manned by the 78th and 80th Companies RGA and Indian Army Gunners from the Hong Kong and Singapore Royal Garrison Artillery (HKS-RGA).  A British  infantry battalion, and the Singapore  Volunteers Batt

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ianjonesncl

Camel Artillery - Mountain Battery HKS-RGA

Camel Artillery - Mountain Battery HKS-RGA

The Hong Kong and Singapore Royal Garrison Artillery (HKS-RGA) was a mountain battery that fought in the Middle East Campaign from 1915 to 1918, operating in Libya, Egypt, Sinai, Palestine and Jordan. It was equipped with mountain guns, initially using mules as transport, before switching to use camels  in December 1916.   The HKS-RGA manned coastal batteries in Hong Kong, Singapore and Mauritius. A mountain battery was formed in Hong Kong in 1912 using Indian Army personnel. In N

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ianjonesncl

45 Siege Battery

45 Siege Battery

A very interesting sight recording 45th Siege Battery during the Great War. The site is dedicated to Gunner A H Deadman who served with the Battery.   45th Siege Battery R.G.A.   The Battery was equipped  with two 9.2 inch mark VI rail guns which were constructed from surplus naval guns mounted on railway platforms by the Elswick  Ordnance Company, Newcastle upon Tyne.     The 45th Siege Battery was formed 17th July 1915 at Sheerness from half of 18

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ianjonesncl

RGA Batteries with French Guns

RGA Batteries with French Guns

Whilst researching Richards Battery RGA it transpired  they were equipped with French Guns. Thanks to the help of GWF Pals I found out  two Siege Batteries, the 105th and 106th were also initially equipped with French guns. It became apparent all three batteries experience of manning French Guns was intertwined.     The 105th and 106thSiege Batteries deployed to the Western Front with personnel only. They arrived in theatre on 17th May 1916 and proceeded to Le Parcq, 30 miles east of

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ianjonesncl

Montage of British Artillery

Montage of British Artillery

Source: CriticalPast British troops firing an 18 pounder field piece. A battery of 18 pounders lined up and firing near a tree line. Each gun rolls back from recoil after firing. British 18 pounder artillery firing from variety of places, including covered entrenched positions; open field positions; and camouflaged positions. A British 127mm (60 pounder) heavy field artillery piece being fired. British BL 6 inch 26cwt howitzers being fired. Field artillery firing in salvos

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ianjonesncl

RA Memorial Hyde Park

RA Memorial Hyde Park

Finally this year, 39 years a Gunner, I visited the Royal Artillery Memorial on Hyde Park Corner.   Commemorating those who lost their lives in the First and Second World Wars, the memorial was unveiled in October 1925 by H. R. H the Duke of Connaught. It was dedicated to the 49,076  Gunners who lost their lives during the First World War.   The memorial was designed by  Charles Sargeant Jagger MC. It features bronze figures and sculptured reliefs depicting the Gunners activ

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ianjonesncl

Richards Battery RGA

Richards Battery RGA

Among the Heavy Batteries of the Royal Garrison Artillery listed on the Long Long Trail is Richards Battery. An unusual designation outside the normal numbering system. Once again GWF Pals had the  the answer; Richards Battery, RGA, XVII Corps June/July 1916.   The Richards Battery was formed on 16th June 1916 with details from 105 Siege Battery and the 51st (Highland) Division Heavy Trench Mortars. On the 21st June Captain Richards and three subalterns took over 3 x 220mm French Guns.

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Battery L

Battery L

The Royal Artillery Association published a poem recording the action of L Battery Royal Artillery at Nery on September 1st 1914 when 3 Victoria Crosses were won.   NERY GUN     It was written in 1915 by Gunner BS Chandler whilst recovering in an Army Hospital in Cheltenham. It was written in a scrap book collated by recovering soldiers.     The 3 Victoria Crosses were won by Captain Edward Bradbury, Battery Sergeant-Major George Dorrell and Serg

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ianjonesncl

First Consol - Captured 12in Rail Howitzer

First Consol - Captured 12in Rail Howitzer

I was asked about some information about a Rail Howitzer captured during the German Spring Offensive in April 1918.   Source: Deutsches Hisorisches Museum   The gun was captured near Erquingehm-Lys where the British had built a rail spur to fire railway artillery.      In April 1918, the Germans launched Operation Georgette quickly pushing the British back, capturing the 12 inch Railway Howitzer, named the First Consol at Erquninhem-Lys near Arment

ianjonesncl

ianjonesncl

Artillery Observation Limber Pole Ladder

Artillery Observation Limber Pole Ladder

I have spent many an hour observing artillery fire - on foot, lying in the open, in a concrete bunker, in a trench and in the air. I have never had to experience a precarious OP position such as the Artillery Observation Limber Pole Ladder. I suppose in the flat dessert of Mesopotamia with the absence of a good OP bring your own..... though being a sitting duck does have it's disadvantages. And how does one get a cup of tea sitting at the top of the pole ! The Imperial war Museum records " These

ianjonesncl

ianjonesncl

Choques Military Cemetery - Nothumbrian Gunners

Choques Military Cemetery - Nothumbrian Gunners

A number of years ago (January 2010 to be precise) I posted a request regarding a row of graves in Choques Military Cemetery where 12 men from D Battery 251 Brigade were buried. From   The origins of the Battery lie with the 5th Durham Battery, 4th Northumbrian (County of Durham) Howitzer Brigade. Prior to the War the Brigade was headquartered in South Shields, on the south side of the mouth of the River Tyne. The Hebburn Battery lay 5 miles upstream on the south bank of the Tyn

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ianjonesncl

 

15 Pounder QF Ehrhardt Gun

As the end of the 19th century approached, the Royal Artillery was untested in general war. The focus of Army was colonial in nature, mainly waged against an enemy with practically no artillery. As a consequence the Royal Artillery was slow to realise changes in warfare over that century. The expanding empire saw the Royal Artillery engaged in many colonial actions.  Frequent small wars in Africa, Far East, India and other colonies occurred throughout the Victorian Era. The Army was engaged in a

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ianjonesncl

 

UBIQUE - Thank God for the Guns

Ubique Rudyard Kipling   There is a word you often see, pronounce it as you may – “You bike,” “you bykwee,” “ubbikwee” – alludin’ to R. A. It serves ‘Orse, Field, an’ Garrison as motto for a crest; An’ when you’ve found out all it means I’ll tell you ‘alf the rest.   Ubique means the long-range Krupp be’ind the long-range ‘ill – Ubique means you’ll pick it up an’, while you do, stand still. Ubique means you’ve caught the flash an’ timed it by the sound. Ubiqu

ianjonesncl

ianjonesncl

 

Lesson on accuracy of artillery

An interesting extract from a letter sent by 2nd Lieut. Humphrey Arden (RGA) to his old school which was published in the school magazine.   Humphrey Arden attended the Dragon school, then   Radley and went on to Queens College Cambridge. He was about prepare for holy orders when war broke out. He was commissioned into the Royal Garrison Artillery in 1915. He died of wounds near Messines 6th June 1917 whilst serving with 156th Heavy Battery RGA. He is buried Bailleu Communal Cemetery

ianjonesncl

ianjonesncl

 

Portuguese Independent Artillery Corps - CAPI

When World War One broke out in 1914, Portugal was a neutral country. However colonial clashes in Africa, in Angola,  and the effect of the German U-boats on Portuguese trade routes to the UK, her main partner, caused tensions with Germany. In February 1916, Portugal at Britain's request seized German and Austro-Hungarian shipping in Portuguese ports, and a month later Germany declared war on Portugal. Portugal during World War One   In response to the declaration Portugal raised

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ianjonesncl

 

Gunner Edwin Henry WOODWARD

Remembered Today: Gunner Edwin Henry WOODWARD 1st South Midland Brigade, Royal Field Artillery who died on 25th December 1916, Gloucester Old Cemetery      The Territorial 1st South Midland Brigade RFA formed part of the 48th Divisional Artillery. The Brigade consisted of the  1st Gloucestershire Battery  and  2nd Gloucestershire Battery (both based in Bristol) and the  3rd Gloucestershire Battery based Gloucester.   In 1914 the Brigade had departed for annual summer c

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ianjonesncl

 

2/Lt ER Hayward RFA

Remembered Today: Second Lieutenant Edward Ronald HAYWARD, 99th Battery Royal Field Artillery who died on 20th December 1916, Mikra British Cemetery, Kalamaria     Edward Ronald Hayward was born at Salt Lake City, USA around 1897. Source: http://www.roll-of-honour.com/Sussex/CopthorneSchool.html   Second son of Robert Francis Hayward of Vancouver, British Columbia and Alfreda Hayward, daughter of the Reverend Frederick Toulmin. He had three brothers, two of whom also

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ianjonesncl


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