Questions re: 1 Can Para Bn War Establishment and vehicles 6 Jun 1944

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Questions re: 1 Can Para Bn War Establishment and vehicles 6 Jun 1944

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

February 15th, 2009, 12:44 am #1

I do have copies of Hartigan and Joyce in front of me as I type this but am being lazy and referring to Bouchery. Actually, I don't think Joyce talks much about vehicles, so perhaps I can be forgiven?

Bouchery lists the following as being on the ORBAT of 1 Can Para. Is this correct? Did they use British vehicles? (Assuming I'm even reading his screwed up table correctly.)

23 folding bicycles
13 non-folding bicycles
2 motorcycles
5 jeeps
1 8-cwt truck (case in point here - the Canadian Army used 8-cwt trucks, but kept them exclusively in Canada, possibly some in the UK, none on the Continent. Did 1 Can Para have any 8-cwt trucks, and would they have been British to conform to 6 ABN DIV or British?)
1 15-cwt water truck (same question)
8 3-ton lorries (same question)

Bouchery also lists a 1944 WE for para battalions, and lists 3 PT instructors. Did 1 Can Para have this increment?
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

February 15th, 2009, 1:02 am #2

And wouldn't you know, Bouchery lists the Canadian WE 1942 on the next page, P.17. But still, doesn't state whether the British 8-cwt or Canadian 8-cwt is used, or which WE was in effect on D-Day...
Michael Dorosh
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Ed Storey
Ed Storey

February 15th, 2009, 2:11 am #3

I do have copies of Hartigan and Joyce in front of me as I type this but am being lazy and referring to Bouchery. Actually, I don't think Joyce talks much about vehicles, so perhaps I can be forgiven?

Bouchery lists the following as being on the ORBAT of 1 Can Para. Is this correct? Did they use British vehicles? (Assuming I'm even reading his screwed up table correctly.)

23 folding bicycles
13 non-folding bicycles
2 motorcycles
5 jeeps
1 8-cwt truck (case in point here - the Canadian Army used 8-cwt trucks, but kept them exclusively in Canada, possibly some in the UK, none on the Continent. Did 1 Can Para have any 8-cwt trucks, and would they have been British to conform to 6 ABN DIV or British?)
1 15-cwt water truck (same question)
8 3-ton lorries (same question)

Bouchery also lists a 1944 WE for para battalions, and lists 3 PT instructors. Did 1 Can Para have this increment?
I don't have the answer, hopefully someone does, but I would guess the vehicles were British or at least the same as what the rest of the Division was using.
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Anonymous
Anonymous

February 15th, 2009, 2:55 am #4

And wouldn't you know, Bouchery lists the Canadian WE 1942 on the next page, P.17. But still, doesn't state whether the British 8-cwt or Canadian 8-cwt is used, or which WE was in effect on D-Day...
Hi Michael;

To answer the questions in this post and your earlier post: -

Upon the authorization of Serial 1351 - 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion (eff 1 Jul 42), the following Canadian War Establishment was authorized and published in Part "A" General Orders 1942 (Army Headquarters, Ottawa) - dated: 19 November 1942 - 'A Canadian Parachute Battalion' Cdn. III/127/1 - effective 1 July 1942. This Cdn. W.E. was based on the then current (1942) British W.E. for - 'A Parachute Battalion' X/127/2.

Prior to the departure for overseas of 1 Can Para: -

"It was agreed that the unit would remain part of the Canadian Army in the United Kingdom, but would be placed under command of the Airborne Division, to the staff of which Canadian Administrative officers would be added. It was also agreed, subject to the approval of the War Office, that standard British equipment would be provided and maintained by the Airborne Division, although personal clothing and battledress would continue to be a Canadian issue"

(Source: Tel G.S. 538 - CANMILITARY to DEFENSOR - dated 18 March 1943).

Also, 1 Can Para departed Canada with all its weapons as provided for in W.E. Cdn. III/127/1.

As for 6 June 1944, for 1 Can Para, the W.E. in effect at that time would have been 'A Canadian Parachute Battalion' - Cdn. III/127/2 - effective 19 May 1944.

As for battalion transport proper, it would have been 'British' issue, which may have included the odd CMP.

I hope this helps.

Cheers
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

February 15th, 2009, 3:23 am #5

I presume "Anonymous" is Mark Tonner?

Do you have a copy of the 1942 WE?

I note Hartigan mentions a Vickers platoon, but I see no mention of this in the references I have, and no mention of Vickers guns in any of the equipment listings I have?
Michael Dorosh
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Anonymous
Anonymous

February 15th, 2009, 4:18 am #6

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Ken Joyce
Ken Joyce

February 15th, 2009, 4:50 am #7

I presume "Anonymous" is Mark Tonner?

Do you have a copy of the 1942 WE?

I note Hartigan mentions a Vickers platoon, but I see no mention of this in the references I have, and no mention of Vickers guns in any of the equipment listings I have?
Hi Michael

Not sure when it all came together for the Battalion? They were not even sent enough weapons etc. to train with until early 1943 at Benning. Even then most of what they learned on was yankee stuff. I can't tell you for certain exactly when the various platoons were formed and equipped. I doubt that Vickers,Mortar etc. were around before their move to England. As I state in the book, no one really took them seriously until they were slated to go to the UK. I know there are WE and Store Tables at the Archives which list exactly what vehicles they had and every item of equipment. I did not copy them because I was only interested in clothing and simply wrote that down otherwise I would tell you. I will take a look just in case I do have a list somehwere and forgot.

Ken
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

February 15th, 2009, 5:24 am #8

Some interesting info at the Bayonet Strength website:

http://www.bayonetstrength.150m.com/Bri ... 201945.htm
Michael Dorosh
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Ken Joyce
Ken Joyce

February 15th, 2009, 5:54 am #9

That is interesting. The Cdn Bn only had one of each specialized platoon as part of Bn HQ.

They did arrive in the UK without any collective training and had a lot to do upon arrival.

On being shipped overseas this is recorded...

Mechanization: No M.G.O. (M.T.) Vehicles or Unit Garage Equipment will be taken.

Tech Stores:

Unit will take 176 Pistols Automatic .45 ; 347 Rifles Kk. IV .303 ; 13 Rifles Boys Mk.I, 29 Bren .303 L.M.G. ; 522 Carbines Machine Sten; 10 Mortar 3" ; 28 Mortar 2" ; 27 Pistols Signal Mk.III or Pistol signal 1" All Signal and Wireless Stores will be taken

So I dont think a Vickers Platoon was set up until after arrival in the UK. I would also bet that the other platoons such as Mortar, Anti-tank etc. were not establsihed until arrival in UK along with the Intelligence Section. They may have been issued sniper rifles however I also do not think that anyone was a trained sniper in the unit until after D-Day. Men may have been given the weapon without the specific training. First mention of trained Bn snipers occurs shortly before VARSITY. Since they had very limited, if any, weapons training in the US and Canada, it took considerable time to get the men of the Bn up to regular standards. It must be remembered that once in the UK they had to get accustomed to their new surroundings and routine as well as complete parachute conversion training to the British standards. It was only after this that weapons training and collective training began.

Sorry I do not have any list of vehicles outside mention of 1 Lorry 3 Ton for transporting troops to Transit Camps for June 6 and mention of 5cwt 4 X 4 for units in 6th AB.

Since the unit brought no vehicles with them, I think it would be safe to say that all vehicles were from the British.

Ken
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Mark W. Tonner
Mark W. Tonner

February 15th, 2009, 2:21 pm #10

I presume "Anonymous" is Mark Tonner?

Do you have a copy of the 1942 WE?

I note Hartigan mentions a Vickers platoon, but I see no mention of this in the references I have, and no mention of Vickers guns in any of the equipment listings I have?
Hi Michael;

I'll see what I have.

Also, I have no idea why my last two posts were "Anonymous"?

Cheers

Mark

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