Royal Artillery Units

ROYAL ARTLLLERY

 The introduction of artillery into the English army came as early as the Battle of Crécy in 1346. Henry VIII made the army's artillery semi-permanent in the sixteenth century but the recognition of the need for a permanent body of artillery did not happen until 1716.

 

Before the 18th century, artillery 'traynes' were raised by royal warrant for specific campaigns and disbanded again when they were over.

 Personnel for this purpose were drafted in either from the Tower of London, headquarters of the Ordnance Office, or else from the small teams of gunners based at various castles and forts around the country. On 26 May 1716, however, by royal warrant of George I two regular companies of field artillery, each 100 men strong, were raised at Woolwich

The title "Royal Artillery" (RA) was first used in 1720.

On 1 April 1722 the two companies were increased to four and grouped with independent artillery companies at Gibraltar and Menorca to form the Royal Regiment of Artillery, commanded by Colonel Albert Borgard.

In 1741 the Royal Military Academy was formed in the Royal Arsenal at Woolwich (RWA) to provide training for RA and Royal Engineers (RE) officers.

The regiment expanded rapidly and, by 1757, had 24 companies divided into two battalions, as well as a cadet company formed in 1741.

During 1748, the presidential artilleries of Bengal, Madras and Bombay were formed.

1756 saw the creation of the Royal Irish Regiment of Artillery.

In 1762 the Royal Artillery Band was formed at Minden. By 1771 there were 32 companies in four battalions, as well as two "invalid companies" comprising older and unfit men employed in garrison duties. During 1782, the regiment moved to the Royal Artillery Barracks (front parade) on Woolwich Common.

In January 1793, two troops of Royal Horse Artillery (RHA) were raised to provide fire support for the cavalry, augmented by two more in November 1793. All RHA personnel were mounted. The Royal Irish Artillery was absorbed into the RA in 1801.

During 1805, the Royal Military Academy moved to Woolwich Common. In 1819, the Rotunda was given to the regiment by the Prince Regent to celebrate end of the Napoleonic Wars. (It was originally built in St. James's Park as the outer casing of the tent in which the Prince Regent entertained the Allied sovereigns in 1814.

In 1832, the regimental motto, Ubique Quo Fas Et Gloria Ducunt ("Everywhere That Right And Glory Lead"; in Latin fas implies "sacred duty"), was granted. The motto signified that the regiment had seen action in all the major conflicts of the British Army and almost all of the minor ones as well.

The regiment was under the control of the Board of Ordnance until the board was abolished in 1855. Thereafter the regiment came under the War Office along with the rest of the army.The School of Gunnery established at Shoeburyness, Essex in 1859. In 1862 the regiment absorbed the artillery of the British East India Company—21 horse batteries and 48 field batteries—which brought its strength up to 29 horse batteries, 73 field batteries and 88 heavy batteries.

On 1 July 1899, the Royal Artillery was divided into three groups: the Royal Horse Artillery of 21 batteries and the Royal Field Artillery of 95 batteries composed one group, while the coastal defence, mountain, siege and heavy batteries were split off into another group named the Royal Garrison Artillery of 91 companies.

The third group continued to be titled simply Royal Artillery, and was responsible for ammunition storage and supply. Which branch a gunner belonged to was indicated by metal shoulder titles (R.A., R.F.A., R.H.A., or R.G.A.). The RFA and RHA also dressed as mounted men, whereas the RGA dressed like foot soldiers. In 1920 the rank of Bombardier was instituted in the Royal Artillery. The three sections effectively functioned as separate corps. This arrangement lasted until 1924, when the three amalgamated once more to become one regiment. In 1938, RA Brigades were renamed Regiments. During the World War II there were over 1 million men serving in 960 gunner regiments.

In 1947 the Riding House Troop RHA was renamed The King's Troop RHA and, in 1951, the title of the regiment's colonel-in-chief became Captain General. When The Queen first visited the Troop after her accession, it was expected that it would become "The Queen's Troop", but Her Majesty announced that in honour of her father's decision it would remain "The King's Troop".

The Royal Horse Artillery, which has separate traditions, uniforms and insignia, still retains a distinct identity within the regiment.[3]

Before World War II, Royal Artillery recruits were required to be at least 5 feet 4 inches (1.63 m) tall. Men in mechanised units had to be at least 5 feet 8 inches (1.73 m) tall. They initially enlisted for six years with the colours and a further six years with the reserve or four years and eight years. They trained at the Royal Artillery Depot in Woolwich.

  

ROYAL CANADIAN ARTILLERY

Many of the units and batteries of the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery are older than the Dominion of Canada itself. The first artillery company in Canada was formed in the province of Canada (New France) in 1750.

Volunteer Canadian artillery batteries existed before 1855 but their history is mostly unknown. Seven batteries of artillery were formed after the passage of the Militia Act of 1855 which allowed Canada to retain a paid military force of 5,000 men. One of the pre-1855 volunteer batteries formed in Saint John, New Brunswick, in 1793 was called the “Loyal Company of Artillery” and exists today as the 3rd Field Artillery Regiment, RCA.

 

US ARTILLERY

The Field Artillery Branch of the United States Army was founded on 17 November 1775 by the Continental Congress, which unanimously elected Henry Knox "Colonel of the Regiment of Artillery". The regiment formally entered service on 1 January 1776. Artillery of all types was part of the Artillery Corps until 1901, when the Corps was split into battery-sized units, called companies at the time, of Field Artillery and Coast Artillery. In 1907 the Artillery Corps was reorganized into the Field Artillery and the Coast Artillery Corps. Although presently Field Artillery and Air Defense Artillery are separate branches, both inherit the traditions of the Artillery branch.


Name: Bamborough, John George

Rank: Lance-Bombardier

Age 22

No. 14221953

Unit: 452 Battery,

1st Mountain Regiment

Missing since: 01-11-1944

Next of Kin: Son of John George and Margaret Bamborough.

Groesbeek Panel: 2

 

KIA Information: 

 Known to have been killed when the LCA he was in was hit by an 88mm shell and sunk. Believe to be the unknown Lance-Bombardier at Bergen op Zoom War Cemetery, Grave 10.B.8.


Name: Burns, Cecil H

Rank: Private First Class

Age 25

No. 35136982

Unit: A Battery,

81 Anti Aircraft Artillery Battalion

101 US Airborne Division

Missing since: 19-09-1944

Next of Kin:Mrs and Mr Landis Burns of Midkiff, West Virgenia

 

KIA Information: 

 Known to have been killed when engaged in Battle with the enemy in the town of Son.

 

 

 

 

 


Name: Davies, Jonathan Cecil

Rank: Gunner

Age 21

No. 14270863

Unit: 236 Battery, 59 Medium Regiment

Missing since: 02-12-1944

Next of Kin:Son of Mr. and Mrs. D. J. Davies, of Craig Cefn Parc, Glamorgan

Groesbeek panel 2

 

 

 

 

KIA Information: No information available at the moment about the circumstances of his death.

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Name: Hedtke, William D

Rank: Private

Age 

No. 36239034

B. Battery, 319 Glider field Artillery Battalion, 82nd US Airborne Division

Missing since: 18-09-1944

Next of Kin: A.E. Hedtke, Iola, Winsconsin.

 

KIA Information: 

 Known to have landed with his glider but was killed/died of wounds received during landing.

 


Name: Ellwood, Frederick Robert

Rank: Gunner

Age 28

No. 966055

Unit 72 Medium Regiment

Missing since: 08-02-1945

Next of Kin:Son of William and Flory Ellwood, of Oxhey, Watford, Hertfordshire.

Groesbeek panel 2

 

 KIA Information: 

 Killed by premature shell, which killed another 6 crewmembers at Heumensoord, Nijmegen. 

 

 


Name: Pewton, Ewart Vernon

Rank: Gunner

Age 26

No. 938670

Unit 324 Battery , 81 Field Regiment

Missing since: 20-09-1944

Next of Kin:Son of Jeremiah and Alice Elizabeth Pewton; husband of Constance Lorraine Pewton, of Brierley Hill, Staffordshire.

Groesbeek panel 2

 

 KIA Information: 

 Killed at/near Veldhoven when the half track he was in received a direct hit, also killing another gunner.


Name: Bent, Eric Henry

Rank: Lance Bombardier

Age 20

No. 1156571

Unit: H Troop, Z Battery,

21st Anti-Tank Regiment

Missing since: 02-10-1944

Next of Kin: Son of Harold H. and Elizabeth F. Bent, of Sale, Cheshire.

Groesbeek Panel: 2

 

KIA Information: 

 Killed in area Aam, area Elst.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Name: Couper, David Oston

Rank: Major

Age 31

No. 55996

Unit: Combined Operations

Royal Artillery G.S.O.2 RA

Missing since: 01-11-1944

Next of Kin: Son of J. C. Ogston Couper and Agnes Ida Couper, of Logie, Pitcaple, Aberdeenshire.

Groesbeek Panel: 1

 

KIA Information: 

 Believed to have been killed during operation Infatuate, off Walcheren. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Name: Decaro, Guy

Rank: Gunner

Age 20

No. B/38085

Unit: 21 Battery, 6 Field Regiment RCA

Missing since: 10-11-1944

Next of Kin:Son of Ross and Rose Decaro, of Galt, Ontario, Canada.

Groesbeek panel 10

 

 

KIA Information: 

Known to have been killed in the St Martensberg area, near Plasmolen.


Name: Lane, Raymond L

Rank: Private

Age 

No. 35044212

Medic, 319 Glider field Artillery Battalion, 82nd US Airborne Division

Missing since: 19-09-1944

Next of Kin: 

 

 

KIA Information: 

Known to have landed with his glider near Wyler-Kranenburg, on the Dutch-German Border, missing since. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Name: Kidston, Adrian Alan Oliphant

Rank: Lieutenant

Age 21

No. 304038

Unit 452 Battery, 1st Mountain Regiment.

Missing since: 01-11-1944

Next of Kin:Son of Brevet Colonel R. A. P. R. Kidston and Mrs. Kidston, of Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire

Groesbeek panel 1

 

 KIA Information: 

 Known to have been killed when the LCA he was in was hit by an 88mm shell and sunk.


Name: Slade, Melvin H.

Rank: Private

Age 19

No. 36752091

Unit 81 Anti Aircraft Artillery Battalion

Missing since: 19-09-1944

Next of Kin: Urbana

 

 KIA Information: 

There are 3 different accounts/remarks about his death.

 

The one made up in 1946, mentioned being killed in action in English Channel, when the glider he was in ditched.

The one made up in 1947, said that he was reported on the 19th on the town of Son and still being listed in an unresolved casualty status.

 

The last one made up on 17 May 1948, stated that he has being reported as being killed in action on the 19th in the vicinity of Eerde and Dinter. Investigations were conducted in the towns of Eerde, Veghel, Sint Oedenrode, Schijndel and Dinter, for any information about him, however with negative results.


Name: Cushenan, Thomas Patrick

Rank: Lance Bombardier

Age 24

No. 978459

Unit: H Troop, Z Battery,

21st Anti-Tank Regiment

Missing since: 02-10-1944

Next of Kin: Husband of Grace Lilian Violet Cushenan, of Edmonton, Middlesex.

Groesbeek Panel: 2

 

KIA Information: 

 Killed in area Aam, area Elst.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Name: Curphey, Arthur William

Rank: Gunner

Age 24

No. B/22310

Unit: E Troop, 99 Battery

19 Field Regiment RCA

Missing since: 01-11-1944

Next of Kin: Toronto

Groesbeek Panel: 10

 

KIA Information: 

 Known to have been killed in the Welberg area, near Steenbergen. 

 

 


Name: Doherty, John S

Rank: Captain

Age 

No. 0-407162

Unit: Medical Officer, 319 Glider field Artillery Battalion, 82nd US Airborne Division

Missing since: 19-09-1944

Next of Kin: 

 

KIA Information: 

 Known to have landed with his glider near Wyler-Kranenburg, on the Dutch-German Border, missing since.


Name: Mills, Clifford M

Rank: Private First Class

Age 

No. 35720069

Unit: B Battery, 319 Glider field Artillery Battalion, 82nd US Airborne Division

Missing since: 19-09-1944

Next of Kin: E. Mills, Troy, Indiana

 

KIA Information: 

 Known to have landed with his glider near Wyler-Kranenburg, on the Dutch-German Border, missing since.

The death of PFC Mills was also confirmed in a letter from a Canadian Chaplain of the 3rd Canadian Division who forwared an indentification tag inscribed "Clifford M.Mills 25720069" which was found on the remains of an American deceased near Zyflich. Later this chaplain attempted to locate the remains with negative results and believed that the rising flood waters carried them away.


Name: Mortimer, Alfred James

Rank: Gunner

Age 22

No. 11407973

Unit 79 Field Regiment

Missing since: 08-11-1944

Next of Kin:Son of Henry and Florence Emily Mortimer, of Kennington Oval, London.

Groesbeek panel 2

 

 KIA Information: 

 Known to have been killed by a mine explosion near Arnemuiden which also killed 3 others. 

 

 


Name: Ward, John Thomas

Rank: Gunner

Age 24

No. 4398737

Unit 275 Battery, 71 Anti Tank Regiment

Missing since: 25-10-1944

Next of Kin:Son of John James Ward and E. M. V. Ward; husband of Mary Ward, of Stockton-on-Tees, Co. Durham

Groesbeek panel 2

 

 KIA Information: 

 Believed to be killed/Died of wounds in S'Hertogenbosch.