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British Tank and Vehicle Markings - A Guide


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Again - many thanks as this is a fantastic resource. Have bookmarked your site as I'm becoming a frequent visitor!

 

All the best

Ben

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1 hour ago, badger said:

Again - many thanks as this is a fantastic resource. Have bookmarked your site as I'm becoming a frequent visitor!

 

All the best

Ben

Good to hear! Feel free to encourage others to do the same 😛

 

And while I'm here, a sneak preview of tomorrow's update:

 

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Edited by SquireBev
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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi,

What a fantastic resource.

I have some information about unit signs for the 1st Polish Armoured Division and 1st Polish Airborne Indpendent Brigade that I can share with you if you wish.

I would be interested to see where they fit in to your charts, the division was brigaded with II Canadian Corps.

Mike

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11 hours ago, malkie24 said:

Hi,

What a fantastic resource.

I have some information about unit signs for the 1st Polish Armoured Division and 1st Polish Airborne Indpendent Brigade that I can share with you if you wish.

I would be interested to see where they fit in to your charts, the division was brigaded with II Canadian Corps.

Mike

 

Hi Mike, that sounds very useful - feel free to share!

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I'm not dead, honest!

 

Another timeline - this time covering the armoured regiments and motor battalions of armoured divisions in NW Europe and Italy.

 

Pieced together from various sources but mostly from the excellent OOB documents to be found here: https://www.britishmilitaryhistory.co.uk/documents/

 

Comments, feedback, corrections, etc all welcome, as ever. I acknowledge that my information on the South African and Polish divisions may be a bit shaky, so I'd particularly welcome any feedback on these units in particular.

 

https://tank-markings.blogspot.com/p/europe-armoured-divisions.html

 

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Just as an aside,

I have a book "The British Soldier" Vol 2 by Jean Bouchery  (ISBN 2-908182-74-2) That has the 21st Army group organisation  listed in this format in it.

 

Selwyn

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3 minutes ago, Selwyn said:

Just as an aside,

I have a book "The British Soldier" Vol 2 by Jean Bouchery  (ISBN 2-908182-74-2) That has the 21st Army group organisation  listed in this format in it.

 

Selwyn

It's a very useful book and one of the sources I've used, although it's by no means infallible.

 

The edition I have also has several parts that were never translated from the original French. Just as well my fiancé is fluent!

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21 hours ago, SquireBev said:

Possibly of some interest: MMP books are in the process of reprinting Taylor's Warpaint series.

 

http://mmpbooks.biz/ksiazki/30

There goes my pension investment then. I've got the full set from the first publication and the prices of these 2nd hand are obscene! Good to see they're being re-published.

 

Regards,

 

Steve

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3 hours ago, fatfingers said:

There goes my pension investment then. I've got the full set from the first publication and the prices of these 2nd hand are obscene! Good to see they're being re-published.

 

Regards,

 

Steve

You're not wrong. I managed to get hold of Volume 3 a few weeks ago for about £50 on eBay, and considered myself very lucky indeed - it's more like £200 on Amazon.

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That is good news on the republication as they are excellent references. Mine are now very well thumbed indeed.

 

Just need Tankograd to reprint Les Freathys WW2 British Trucks.

 

All the best and keep up the good work

Ben

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  • 2 weeks later...

SquireBev:

 

Your job is wonderful. The subject is extremely difficult.

 

As I am interested in the history of the British army during the WW2 Mediterranean Campaign, I would like to collaborate with some information that I researched on the net for many years.

 

There is a table, dated 12/04/1940 about Infantry Division vehicle markings, which can help serve as a reference for updating your British Infantry Division Middle east - Early 1941 table.

 

Divisional Troops:
Armored Cavalry Reg *: AoS Black Number 2
* At the time known as Divisional RAC.
Provost Coy Divisional: AoS Black, Number 31
Divisional Postal Unit: Aos Black, Number 32

 

Senior Infantry Brigade:
HQ Infantry Brigade: AoS Red, Number 12


Second Infantry Brigade:
HQ Infantry Brigade: Aos Green, Number 16


Junior Infantry Brigade:
Second Infantry Battalion: Aos Brown, Number 22

 

Royal Artillery:
Light AA Reg: AoS Red over Blue, Number 7

 

Royal Army Service Corps:
RASC HQ: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 1
RASC Ammunition Coy: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 24
RASC Petrol Coy: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 25
RASC Supply Coy: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 26

 

Royal Army Medical Corps:
Field Ambulance Coy: AoS Black, Number 27
Field Ambulance Coy: AoS Black, Number 28
Field Ambulance Coy: AoS Black, Number 29
Field Hygiene Section: AoS Black, Number 30

 

My doubt is in the existence of Machine Gun Btn. A detail to consider are the Anti tank company, with AoS Red, Green and Brown, numbered 33, 34 and 35 respectively.


Also:
Employ Platoon: Aos Black, Number 1
Section Intelligence Corps: Aos Black, Number 1

 

Hope this helps.
Best regards,
Fábio.

 

P.S: Sorry if the reply got too long .....

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5 hours ago, fpmeyer said:

SquireBev:

 

Your job is wonderful. The subject is extremely difficult.

 

As I am interested in the history of the British army during the WW2 Mediterranean Campaign, I would like to collaborate with some information that I researched on the net for many years.

 

There is a table, dated 12/04/1940 about Infantry Division vehicle markings, which can help serve as a reference for updating your British Infantry Division Middle east - Early 1941 table.

 

Divisional Troops:
Armored Cavalry Reg *: AoS Black Number 2
* At the time known as Divisional RAC.
Provost Coy Divisional: AoS Black, Number 31
Divisional Postal Unit: Aos Black, Number 32

 

Senior Infantry Brigade:
HQ Infantry Brigade: AoS Red, Number 12


Second Infantry Brigade:
HQ Infantry Brigade: Aos Green, Number 16


Junior Infantry Brigade:
Second Infantry Battalion: Aos Brown, Number 22

 

Royal Artillery:
Light AA Reg: AoS Red over Blue, Number 7

 

Royal Army Service Corps:
RASC HQ: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 1
RASC Ammunition Coy: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 24
RASC Petrol Coy: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 25
RASC Supply Coy: AoS Red over Green diagonal, Number 26

 

Royal Army Medical Corps:
Field Ambulance Coy: AoS Black, Number 27
Field Ambulance Coy: AoS Black, Number 28
Field Ambulance Coy: AoS Black, Number 29
Field Hygiene Section: AoS Black, Number 30

 

My doubt is in the existence of Machine Gun Btn. A detail to consider are the Anti tank company, with AoS Red, Green and Brown, numbered 33, 34 and 35 respectively.


Also:
Employ Platoon: Aos Black, Number 1
Section Intelligence Corps: Aos Black, Number 1

 

Hope this helps.
Best regards,
Fábio.

 

P.S: Sorry if the reply got too long .....

 

Very helpful, Fábio, thank you!

 

I'll see how it reconciles with the books I've got here and update my diagrams accordingly.

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Bit of a shameless plug, but I've started a Twitter account to run alongside the website: https://twitter.com/squire_bev

 

I thought it'd be useful to have one central place to post updates, and I'll also be posting brief histories of particular units and formations, along with snapshots of their structure and markings.

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OK!

 

With your permission, I would like to correct what I wrote about the existence of MG Batallion. You are right to put the MG on the tables. In fact, in 1941, it is common for MG Btn to appear in British structures. Also in NZ, Indian and Australian infantry.


I would bet some shillings that Mg Btn, in Middle East Early 1941, is AoS Black, number 37. I may not be 100% sure, but I believe it is close to 95%.

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