Royal Marines Armoured Support Regiment (2RMAS) Juno, D-Day

Discussion in 'Commandos & Royal Marines' started by 0xonian, Nov 26, 2013.

  1. DannyM

    DannyM Member

    I have the following information.

    Regina’s started landing at 08.05 hours. “A” Coy first in followed by “B” Coy at 08.15. “C” Coy landed at 08.35 and “D” Coy at 08.55.

    Command Group with Lt-Col Matheson touched down at 09.00.

    “S” Troop, 2 RMAS Regt.
    Captain Brown, RM.

    08.30. Sherman and two Centaurs beached at 08.30. FOO called for fire on tall doomed shaped tower containing MG post, successfully engaged and knocked out by AP shot from Sherman. FOO Wounded and subsequently evacuated.

    09.30 - 11.30. Contacted left section, (landed at 08.00). Whole Troop formed up in field East of Courseulles.

    11.30. FOO with “A” Coy, Regina Rifles ask for tanks to knock out pillbox on beach. Sherman went forward but pillbox silenced by grenades before its arrival.

    Michel, I will dig the photo out and scan it. It may not be that good though. From memory a lot of the background is out of focus.


  2. DannyM

    DannyM Member

    Hello Michel,
    Attached is a scan of the Centaur.

    One of the reports mentions that at least three Centaurs damaged their tracks on the beach. Maybe this is one of them.



  3. Many thanks for the report by 'S' Troop Danny ! That must be the Centaurs, or rather Sherman, which Gunner Holzman called, since it took place after Captain Else was wounded and evacuated.

    Nice close-up of the Centaur ! It seems that not only Centaurs suffered damaged tracks in this area of the beach, witness the Crusader AA on A23947 above, which has shed both its tracks.

  4. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Hi all,

    I was looking to put some documents away, and as I looked through one of them I saw the picture attached and something went 'click' I seemed to remember somewhere on this forum, someone was looking for a tank named 'Virgin'.

    I do not know if this is the one you were looking for but here it is anyway

    Sherman tank 'Virgin'.jpeg

  5. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    T Troop under Captain Elliott landed on Queen Red beach according to ADM 202/304 1 Armoured Support Craft Battery war diary. Can't seem to see any mention of Kay(e) in this diary other than he joined a Holding Battery in March or April IIRC.
  6. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    46 Commando War Diary
  7. Don Juan

    Don Juan Well-Known Member

    Is anybody able to clarify a small organisational detail for me?

    I'd like to know if the RMASG was a sub-unit of the Royal Marine Support Craft Regiment, and how the two were related.

    Thanks for any info.
  8. Unfortunately the RM Museum has changed its website and I can't find this page anymore, but here's what I copied from it some time ago:

    Royal Marines Museum: [obsolete link]

    1st, 2nd and 3rd RM Support Craft: the ‘1st’ became the 5th RM (Independent) Armoured Support Bty; the ‘2nd’ became the 1st RM Armoured Support Rgt; and the ‘3rd’ became the 2nd Armoured Support Rgt.


    RM Armoured Support Craft Regiment

    Formed at Merley House Camp, Wimborne12, Dorset, during July and August 194313 from ranks of the RM Division’s artillery units, it was reorganised in September with an HQ, 1, 2 and 3 Batteries, each with three Troops, and a Holding Battery. From 18 October the Regiment was under the direct command of AGRM (see RM Circ 7399/43). The personnel wore combined operations flashes. In each Troop were four detachments for LCGs,14 but these became the nuclei of units in the Armoured Support Group after the Batteries moved to Le Marchant Barracks in Devizes, Wiltshire, as of 18 October 1943. The HQ was disbanded about March 1944.

    RM Armoured Support Craft Group

    Formed on 14 March 1944, this Group would command the two RM Armoured Support Regiments and an RM Indepen­dent Battery of Centaur tanks. It was commanded by Brig D. C. W. Sanders, OBE, AFC, who had been CRA of the RM Division. He was killed when this HQ was in Normandy in June 1944 and succeeded by the second–in–command Col A. J. Harvey, OBE.15 See also HQ Wing (below). The small tactical headquarters was staffed by RM officers who developed: first, the techniques for firing engineless tanks on Bailey bridging in LCT(Adap­ted); and later, the methods of firing and control for these Centaurs with their engines replaced.

    The headquarters returned to the UK in late June 1944 after several weeks in action, and on being disbanded that autumn the personnel were transferred to the 29th RM Bn, later forming the 34th Amphibian Support Regiment.

    1st and 2nd RM Armoured Support Regiments

    Formed in the spring of 1944, each with two Batteries, these Regiments were landed from LCT(Armoured), being LCT(Adapted) that had been modified. The HQs, each of some 40 all ranks, were mainly administrative, and only the tactical portion of two officers and two other ranks landed with the Batteries on 6 June 1944 in Normandy. The Regiments’ personnel included RA officers and RA gunner–drivers, with RAC fitters and mechanics, but the majority were RM gunners, including those who had trained for LCG(L)s. Many of the HQ staff transferred ultimately to the 34th Amphibian Support Regiment, after the armoured Support Regiments were disbanded in the autumn of 1944.

    1st RM, 2nd RM, 3rd RM, 4th RM and 5th RM (Independent) Support Batteries

    The ‘1st’ and ‘2nd’ were in the 1st RM Armoured Support Regt, the ‘3rd’ and ‘4th’ in the 2nd RM Armoured Support Regt, and the ‘5th’ was an independent Battery. Each had four Troops with its Left and Right Sections. Troop commanders were in Sherman tanks, with the two Centaurs of the Left Section, in one LCT(A). The Right Section of two Centaurs were in a second LCT(A). Operationally Batteries Nos 1 to 4 had no tactical HQ, as Troop commanders worked to their local artillery commands, therefore the Batteries’ cooks and quartermasters landed in follow–up waves. After the initial landings described in chapter 6, the Batteries were used as independent units. The tanks of the ‘1st’ and ‘2nd’ supported 4 (Army) Commando and 48 RM Commando; the ‘3rd’ and ‘4th’ supported the Canadians, being deployed 3,000yds forward of the Canadian artillery. Troops from these last two Batteries assisted 46 RM Cdo on D+1 (7 June), and a Troop from the 5th RM Battery crossed the Orne river to give counter mortar fire in support of 4 SS (Commando) Brigade, among several independent actions by these Batteries before they were withdrawn on 24 June. By this time some 50 per cent had had mechanical failures. Although they had been intended as purely assault troops, they had stayed in action for almost three weeks and proved a valuable supplement to conventional artillery.

    The Centaurs’ 95–mm gun–howitzer had many parts in common with the 25–pdr, and as a totally protected gun in a turret was less vulnerable than self–propelled artillery. These tanks were taken over by RA gunners before the Batteries’ personnel returned to the UK for disbandment on the formation of 29th RM Battalion on 3 October 1944, this Battalion later became the 34th RM Amphibian Support Regiment.

    RM Armoured Support Group HQ Wing and holding Battery

    This Wing included 65 RAC mechanics under command of five RAC officers,16 and 50 RM reserves for tank crews. These mechanics, assisted by RM tank crews, made exceptional improvisations to keep the tanks in action, despite the limited facilities available.

    Edit: the old page has been archived by here:

    Don Juan and Tricky Dicky like this.
  9. Don Juan

    Don Juan Well-Known Member

    Thank you very much Michel!
  10. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    Is it jus me, or are the 3-ton lorries behind the bulldozer in the photo in post 61 Austin K-5s? Can anyone work out what they are towing? Just checking as well, that the consensus is that this is Gold Beach? On D-Day?


  11. This is indeed GOLD Area, JIG GREEN Beach on 7 Jun 44.

    The lorries do look like K5s. No idea what they might be towing.

    The first photo in my post #57 above shows a cropped but sharper and slightly larger version of this pic and of the trailers.

    Last edited: May 3, 2018
  12. Another, less cropped version of A 23947:

  13. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member


    I keep looking at the Austin K5 on far left and think that I can see a Bofors 40mm gun barrel sticking out behind the indistinctive lump that it is towing.


  14. I agree, that could very well be a Bofors, with the two side stabilisers in the upright position barely guessable.

    From Trux's thread on Force 'L':
    the only non-SP Bofors listed are the following:

    Serial 3500 (JIG)
    6 3ton GS (in lieu of LAA Tractors) towing
    6 40mm Bofors LAA guns from 1 AA Squadron RAFR.

    Serial 3502 (JIG)
    6 3ton 4 X 4 GS (in lieu of LAA tractors) from 78 RAFR AA Squadron.
    6 40mm Bofors LAA guns from 78 RAFR AA Squadron.

    Serial 3506 (KING)
    6 3ton 4 X 4 GS in lieu of LAA Tractors from 2 AA Sq RAFR, ‘A’ Echelon for 1 RAS.
    6 40mm Bofors LAA from 2 AA Sq RAFR, ‘A’ Echelon for 1 RAS.

    Serial 3507 (KING)
    6 3ton 4 X 4 GS in lieu of LAA Tractors from 2 AA Sq RAFR, ‘A’ Echelon for 1 RAS.
    6 40mm Bofors LAA from 2 AA Sq RAFR, ‘A’ Echelon for 1 RAS.

    Since the photo was shot on JIG, this lorry should come from either Serial 3500 or 3502, supposing of course that neither 3506 nor 3507 actually beached on JIG instead of KING.

    In any case, it is from an RAFR AA Sqn...

    IWM B5140 also shows a lorry towing a Bofors nearby, closer to the group of beached LCT in the background. A better version of B5140 can be found on (never mind the filename):


    Is this a K5 again?

  15. Arty

    Arty Member


    In both IWM A23947 & B5140 the vehicles towing the anti aircraft guns are AEC Matadors & the guns are 3.7in HAA not 40mm Bofors. The Matadors/3.7's are quite likely from 113 HAA Regiment. In A23947, behind the Matador/3.7 combo, is what appears to be a K5 towing a trailer.

    For comparison IWM photo B8768 depicts a Matador/3.7 combo in Caen on 07Aug.


    Attached Files:

  16. Arty,

    Thank you for clarifying this for us. I did notice the two stabilisers on the side (thus a total of four) on B5140, which should have told me it could not be a Bofors. I guess Tom's obsession with K5's is catching!

  17. Tom OBrien

    Tom OBrien Senior Member

    Arty and Michel,

    Yes, I see what you mean - the lorries towing the guns are Matadors and the guns are 3.7 not 40mm, doh!

    But still, and I don't think it is just my obsession, in A23497 isn't the vehicle on the left behind the Matador and 3.7 an Austin K5? Perhaps towing a trailer.

    In any case I guess I need to look at both 113 HAA Regt and the RAF LAA squadrons diaries, so I'm a happy chap!


  18. DadsWW2Service

    DadsWW2Service New Member

    First time post. Not sure how to how to participate in this form. Responding to top post from Frank 26 November 2013 9:00am. I clicked on red down arrow and now I see -1 in a red box, not sure what I just did. Is it possible that there were two vessels sharing the same LCT 2420 number? My father served as a US Coxswain on LCT 420 / LCT 2420 ( a Mark 5 LCT) and earned 3 Bronze battle Stars for action in Sicily, Southern France and and for assisting Great Britain in Burma. I have found numerous websites with pictures, stories and references to this vessel.
    Perhaps there are British Military records of my Fathers where abouts when he was assisting Great Britain. Would anyone know how I might request copies of those records. I obtained his US records from the US National Archives earlier this year. Kurt
  19. Trux

    Trux 21 AG Patron


    The red and green buttons are for giving/deducting reputation points. Similar to like/dislike. Easy mistake and I am sure you will be forgiven.

    2420 is not the LCTs pennant number but its serial number used in planning for D Day. Not the same craft as your fathers. LCT 2420 was not present on D Day but was serving in the Mediterranean. Confusing I know.


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