Discussion in 'Higher Formations' started by Philip Reinders, Jun 20, 2008.
I recevied these 2badges today from a Veteran, can any tell me some more about the number 5.
I serve with the best Division in the British Army and I do not have a clue what that is.
I have emailed the chap and asked him about it, he was 33 field regiment
33rd Regt RFA, one of three field artillery regiments of the 3rd (Br) Infantry division. It had three batteries during all of WWII, 101, 109 and 113/114 each with 8 subs (guns).
Each battery was made up of two troops of 4 subs each, these troops were lettered across the regiment so 101 battery had troops A and B and 109 battery had troops C and D and 113/114 battery had troops E and F.
There is no clue that the 5 number had anything to do with the unit identification.
My (uninformed) guess is that it might have to do with the fact that each detachment serving a sub was manned by 6 gunners and these were numbered from one to six. Number 5 would be bringing ammunition up. The problem with this though is that they were cross trained and often switched functions while serving the guns.
I hope you will let us know what the reply was from you donor Philip. Any chance he might correspond with me? My father, Capt John S Compton was Adjutant of the regiment until he DOW Oct 28 1944 near Overloon Holland right around where Sapper got hit and took the same hellish ambulance drive he described to Eindhoven hospital.
Thanks Compo, he told me as what he could remember had to do with a number given to each regimeny in the division.
In Patrick Delaforce's book, Monty's Ironsides page 135 is a photo of a couple of chaps from 7th Field Regt wearing a diamond but with a 3 on it.
As 7th Fd Regt more senior than 33 Fd Regt is has a lower number, I imagine.
There must be something else at play Owen as the three field regiments were the 7th 33rd and 76th. These would be numbered consecutively if they were in order of seniority but we have the 7th as number 3 and then jump to the 33rd as 5.
I wish I could suggest something better but I have to admit to being stumped.
Do you suppose this numbering system goes back pre-war where - as someone points out - #5 brought up the ammo while # 6 held the horses ???
Well it's as good as any I suppose !
Don't forget the other RA units in the Div, AT & LAA.
I wonder what numbers thet had?
PS My other idea it was to confuse the enemy .......and us 60-odd years later.
That could well do it Owen, wonder if there are any good books about the Division that might show some more sbout it,
I am very proud of those that fell in Monty's Iron sides. There is never a day goes by that I do not think of them.
All of us had sleeve insignias. One of them was our company number. A white 49 on a blue square back ground. But that bears no relation to this.
That applied to all units. But none like the one in question. Stumps me!
Our insignia was Royal Engineers across the top of the sleeve in Navy and red. Then lower the red and black triangles of blood and Iron. Then the white 49 on a blue square and beneath that the Navy and red RE flash. Looked like a Christmas tree.
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