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Sunday, February 7th 2010, 5:19pm

British Army 1939

A quick look at what's cooking for next year.

Cruiser Tank Mk V Crusader (A15): In full production since 1938, new variants for 1939 include; Crusader I CS armed with 3.7in howitzer and Crusader I OP with a turret fitted with dummy gun, extra radio and communications equipment fitted and spotting binoculars

Daimler Armoured Car will enter production. Carries turret of the Tetrarch light tank, has no chassis, drive via a fluid flywheel torque converter and pre-selector gearbox, has disc-brakes. Power is provided by a 95hp Daimler petrol engine for a maximum speed of 50mph and a range of 205 miles. Armour is 16-6mm thick and weight is 7.5tons.

Ordnance 6pdr QF Mk IV: Calibre 57mm, weight of shot 6.28lbs AP, 6.23lbs HE, muzzle velocity 2,700fps and penetration 68mm at 1000 yards. Weight in action is 2,471lbs; traverse is 90 degrees and elevation -5 to +15 degrees. Under development from April 1937 as a towed version of the Ordnance 6pdr QF Mk III tank gun for RA units. Service entry due early 1939.

.303in Rifle No.4 Mk I; a shortened Rifle No.3 for use overseas and for export. This rifle is 3ft 3.5in long, weighs 7.15lbs, muzzle velocity is 2,400 ft/sec and has a ten round magazine. Due to enter service in 1939. Has a conical flash hider and a rubber pad on the butt to compensate for the flash and recoil effects.


Sunday, April 18th 2010, 4:30pm

For info here is the 1939 strength of the British Army down to divisional strength. For more info see the British Army Section of the Encyclopedia.

British Army

Commander of the Imperial General Staff (C.I.G.S.): General J. Gort

Southern Command HQ Aldershot (1st Inf Div, 4th Inf Div, 43rd (Wessex) Inf Div, 44th (Home Counties) Inf Div and 1st Arm Div) G.O.C Lt-Gen A. Wavell
Eastern Command HQ Colchester (12th (Eastern) Inf Div, 45th Inf Div, 54th (East Anglian) Inf Div and 2nd Arm Div) G.O.C Lt-Gen H. Wilson
Western Command HQ Lancaster (5th Inf Div, 38th (Welsh) Inf Div, 42nd (East Lancashire) Inf Div, 55th (West Lancs) Mot Div and 3rd Arm Div) G.O.C. Lt-Gen A. Cunningham
Northern Command HQ Catterick (3rd Inf Div, 23rd (Northumbrian) Inf Div, 49th (West Riding) Inf Div, 50th (Northumbrian) Inf Div and 6th Arm Div) G.O.C Lt-Gen C. Auchinleck
Scottish Command HQ Glasgow (15th (Scottish) Inf, 9th (Highland) Div and 51st (Highland) Inf Div) G.O.C Lt-Gen P. B. Mc Taggart
Northern Ireland Command HQ Belfast (Calvary Militia: North Irish Horse) G.O.C Lt-Gen T. Mc Bride
London District (56th London Div, 46th Inf Div and Independent Armoured Brigade) G.O.C Lt-Gen A. Brooke
Middle East HQ Cairo (6th Inf Div and 7th Arm Div (Egypt), 7th Inf Div and 8th Arm Div (Iraq), 8th Inf Div and 10th Arm Div (Palestine) and Arab Legion) G.O.C General E. Ironside
Far East HQ Singapore (rotation of Home Divisions, currently 2nd Infantry plus 18th Inf Div and 1st Burma Division) G.O.C General J. Dill
West Africa HQ Accra (23rd West African Brigade) G.O.C Maj-Gen H. Alexander
East Africa HQ Nairobi (21st East African Brigade) G.O.C Maj-Gen N. Ritchie
Hong Kong HQ G.O.C Lt-Gen F. Pile
Anti-Aircraft Command Lt-Gen W. Platt
Coastal Artillery Command Lt-Gen T. Clark
Engineer-in Chief Maj-Gen H. Addison

In wartime the following Commands would be numbered as Armies as follows;
Southern Command & London District: Would form First Army
Eastern Command: Would form Sixth Army
Western Command: Would form Third Army
Northern Command: Would form Second Army
Scottish Command: Would form Fourth Army
Northern Ireland Command: Would form Fifth Army as a reserve unit
Middle East: Forces in Egypt would form Eighth Army, forces in Palestine and Iraq would form Tenth Army (Ninth Army would be reserve formation)
Far East: Would form Twelfth Army in Burma and Fourteenth Army in Malaya

Formations of the British Army
1st Armoured Division
2nd Armoured Division
3rd Armoured Division
6th Armoured Division
7th Armoured Division
8th Armoured Division
9th Armoured Division
10th Armoured Division (former 1st Cavalry Division in Palestine)
Independent Armoured Brigade (in wartime would become 5th Armoured Division)
55th (West Lancashire) Motorised Division First Line TA
1st Infantry Division
2nd Infantry Division
3rd Infantry Division
4th Infantry Division
5th Infantry Division
6th Infantry Division
7th Infantry Division
8th Infantry Division
18th Infantry Division
54th (East Anglian) Infantry Division First Line TA
56th (London) Infantry Division First Line TA
9th (Highland) Infantry Division First Line TA
12th (Eastern) Infantry Division Second Line TA
15th (Scottish) Infantry Division Second Line TA
23rd (Northumbrian) Infantry Division Second Line TA
38th (Welsh) Infantry Division Second Line TA
42nd (East Lancashire) Infantry Division First Line TA
43rd (Wessex) Infantry Division First Line TA
44th (Home Counties) Infantry Division First Line TA
45th Infantry Division Second Line TA
46th Infantry Division Second Line TA
48th (South Midland) Infantry Division First Line TA
49th (West Riding) Infantry Division First Line TA
50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division First Line TA
51st (Highland) Infantry Division First Line TA
1st Burma Division
21st East African Brigade (in wartime would become 13th East African Division)
23rd West African Brigade (in wartime would become 83rd West African Division)