HQ 2nd Parachute Brigade

HQ 2nd Parachute Brigade

1942 to 1947

HQ 2nd Parachute Brigade formed the headquarters for operations of the 2nd (Independent) Parachute Brigade.

On 17 July 1942 the 2nd Parachute Brigade was formed under Brigadier Eric Down. The 4th Parachute Battalion was transferred from the 1st Parachute Brigade to provide the initial nucleus, followed by the addition of the 5th and 6th Parachute Battalions. This formed part of the process to bring the 1st Airborne Division up to a full establishment of three brigades.

The 2nd Brigade fought in North Africa and Italy between 1942-3. When the 1st Airborne Division returned to the UK in November 1943 to prepare for D-Day the 2nd Brigade remained in Italy and was retitled the 2nd (Independent) Parachute Brigade in December. It was to remain in Italy as line infantry and in the airborne role until the end of the war.

The 2nd (Independent) Brigade parachuted into Southern France in August 1944 as part of Operation DRAGOON and occupied Athens in the autumn and winter of 1944-5, before returning to Italy. It was renamed 2nd Parachute Brigade after the war and was sent to Palestine with the 6th Airborne Division in 1945. It was disbanded in the UK in October 1947.


  • Brig E.E. Down 30 Jul 1942
  • Brig C.H.V. Pritchard11 Sep 1943
  • Col T.C.H. Pearson (acting) 1 Mar 1944
  • Brig C.H.V. Pritchard 6 Mar 1944
  • Col T.C.H. Pearson (acting) 22 Aug 1944
  • Brig C.H.V. Pritchard 29 Aug 1944
  • Col T.C.H. Pearson (acting) 13 Nov 1944
  • Brig C.H.V. Pritchard  9 Dec 1944
  • Col H.B. Coxen (acting) 9 Feb 1945
  • Brig C.H.V. Pritchard 28 Feb 1945
  • Col H.B. Coxen (acting) 1 Jun 1945
  • Brig C.H.V. Pritchard 26 Jun 1945

See also: 2nd (Independent) Parachute Brigade

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Letters and Cards_1

  • Christmas and New Year Card from 2nd Para Bde HQ Palestine 1945

    Christmas and New Year Card from 2nd Para Bde HQ Palestine 1945

    1 Item

Group photos_4

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