212 Airlanding Light Battery RA

212 Airlanding Light Battery RA

1943 to 1947

212 Airlanding Light Battery RA formed part of the 53rd (Worcester Yeomanry) Airlanding Light Regiment RA, which served as the main artillery support for 6th Airborne Division.

Along with 210 and 211 Batteries, 212 Battery became an Airborne Light Battery when 53rd (Worcester Yeomanry) Anti-Tank Regiment was redesignated as an Airlanding unit in 1943, armed with 75mm Pack Howitzers.

212 Battery took part in the Normandy campaign shortly after the initial landings as part of the seatail (due to a shortage of suitable transport on 5-6 June 1944). 212 Battery were eventually unloaded ashore in Normandy on 14 June 1944 and subsequently played a significant role in 'counter mortar' attacks in support of Airlanding infantry formations. 212 Battery remained in Normandy until the majority of 6th Airlanding Brigade was finally withdrawn in early September 1944.

212 Battery later took part in the Rhine Crossing on 24 March 1945, during Op Varsity and then proceeded through to the Baltic, deployed continuously until returning to Bulford in late May.

Along with the rest of 53rd Airlanding Light Regiment, 212 Battery was deployed to Palestine in September 1945. Initially intended as a temporary deployment before transit to the Far East, 212 Battery subsequently remained with 6th Airborne Division in Palestine until 1947.

At this point, the reorganisation of the Royal Artillery saw 53rd (Worcester Yeomanry) Airlanding Light Regiment become 33rd Airborne Light Regiment RA on 1 April 1947. 212 Battery absorbed the history and honours of 87 Field Battery RA, and was renumbered 97 Airborne Light Battery RA

Record under construction

Battery Commanders

1943-4        Maj M Gubbins
1945            Maj C Knox-Peebles

Further reading

Maj AJK Newsham and Capt DMO Brigstocke (Eds) A Short History of the Airborne Gunners (2009) Force & Corporate Publishing Ltd

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