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Remembered Today:

S Battery Anti Aircraft RGA


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I have the service record of a Gnr 91517 Archibald Workman. He joined 'S' Anti Aircraft Battery of the Royal Garrison Artillery. His papers say quite clearly that this battery joined the BEF at Boulogne in November 1917.

Brigadier N. W. Routledge's volume of the "History of the Royal regiment of Artillery" on the Anti Aircraft Artillery says that an 'S' Battery was created in Italy in January 1918.

Could anyone with knowledge of this area confirm that these two are distinct and different units? If so, any information on the operational location of the 'S' Battery in France would be very welcome.

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Could the difference be down to traiing? My Grandfather was an RFA Regular who was wounded in the early days of the Somme and spent the rest of 1916 and the early part of 1917 in England. He was transferred to the RGA in the February and sent to Salonika in March 1917 but did not become active in 99th AAS until mid-July. Reading the War Diary of the Section, it seems that the theoretical part of training was dealt with by the Artillery Training School at Summerhill Camp but that the trainees were then posted to a Section for practical training before being re-posted to their own Sections.


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Hello Chris

I am pretty certain they are the same unit. The OH volume for Italy has them there in Nov-Dec 17 as part of the "initial line-up". There is a War Diary in WO95/4206 for "Headquarters Anti-Aircraft Group" but none for either S Batt or V Batt, which also went to Italy.

The ORBAT for France for 9 Nov 17 shows them "attached XV Corps" but in Sep 17 they were under Fourth Army.


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Chris: It is quite possible that he joined the BEF in November 1917 as most of the troops that were sent to Italy in late 1917 were sent from France. The five AA sections that formed 'S' AA Battery in Italy in late 1917 (23, 63, 72, 106 and 117 AA Sections) came from France to Italy. The sections went into action in Italy in December and on 26 December 1917 63 and 117 sections shot down three enemy aircraft. During late December 60 AA Section joined the Battery. In February 1918 two more AA sections (135 and 136 sections) arrived in Italy and the eight AA Sections were arranged into two batteries: 'S' with 23, 72, 117 and 135 AA sections and 'V' with 60, 63, 106 and 136 AA sections) under 4th AA Group. Regards, Dick Flory

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