BAOR ORBAT July 1989 V.8 (Old & Bold Help)

LD17

Old-Salt
#1
Good Afternoon all,

After a long hiatus I have updated my tome, it is now on version 8. In the past members of ARRSE have contributed both their own stories and vital information. I am asking again for any stories or insights anyone here wants to share. The British Forces Germany Legacy Project has contacted me and I am hoping they use the document as a "moment in time" with the publishing of a book in September (British Forces in Germany 1945-2019 – The Lived Experience, already available for pre-order on Amazon) and NAM exhibit. I currently have numerous FOI requests with the MOD that I am awaiting answers/documents on. I will also be putting a thread in the Old & Bold Forum (I hope the Mods don't mind). So to all who have contributed, thank you and please even if you have any old pamphlets which you can scan with information, everything will be appreciated and acknowledged.

https://www.orbat85.nl/documents/BAOR-July-1989.pdf

Louie
 
#2
That’s an interesting read!

1RTR was technically just Tofrek Bks, I don’t remember the East\ West designation? Sandwiched between 1AAC and 1RTR was a German Sanitats Bn.

1RTR was all Chieftain, Stillbrew TOGS by then.

There was also a very small training area at Hildesheim called Himmelstuhr. It was Bundeswehr but used by Brits extensively for low level training including very limited track activity. I think it’s probably safe now to say that it’s about as far as we got when getting unwelcome phone calls in the wee small hours! It’s also about as far as the average Chieftain could manage.....

There were various Atts there too but not sure how they fitted into the Orbat? RMP, RAMC, RADC and a Comm Cen.
 
#3
I would suggest that under the HQ 1(BR) Corps you should have the HQ parts listed as:

HQ Regt 1(BR) Corps

HQ Coy - This provided admin for the HQ staff and departmental personnel and other pax such as chefs, QM's etc.
14 Sqn RCT - You have this listed as 14 Corps Support Sqn RCT. This is incorrect and it was simply 14 Sqn RCT and was an integral part of HQ Regt, not an independent unit in support of it. We had similar numbers as Def Coy.
Defense Company RPC - This is (AFAIK) shown, as correct.

4 Sqn, 16 Sigs Royal Signals - Bit if a strange one this, whilst located in Ripon Bks and prviding the COMCEN and exchange for the HQ it came under 16 Sigs for things like discipline IIRC, but the HQ Regt for personal admin. You may have to ask around for a better overview.

I served in 14 Sqn RCT between 88-92.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
#4
(I left BAOR in November 85.) Gina

Under 1 Armd Div, I don't see Commander Finance (Comd Fin) 1 Armd Div, based at HQ 1 Armd Div, Verden?

Under 12 Armd Bde I don't see 12 Armoured Workshop REME (12 Armd Wksp), Osnabrück. Likewise 7 Armd Wksp under 7 Armd Bde (Fallingbostal?)
 

LD17

Old-Salt
#5
Toastie,
Thank you ! I’ll add the Chieftain Mk under 1 RTR. Any further info on them, 22 Arm Bde seems to be the only Square Bde in BAOR. I always wondered if they would stay put and come under control of the PRG..........
The Bks info was mostly from the BAOR Locations website (along with the Regt Journal)

Speedy,
We tried to list (mostly) units by their Corps, but also tried to put units that had a P&W mission under the same HQ with that HQ. Looks like I’ll be moving the listing for 14 Sqd, thank you !

Alien,

Don’t have much on RAPC so put the Cashier Office under “Misc units” under 1 Armd Div. As for the two Wksps they are under Commander Maintenance, top of page 38.

Thank you all for perusing my work, please keep any help coming.

Louie
 
#6
Very interesting reading. I had no idea my STAB unit had an actual role.
 
#7
22 Signal Regiment in Lippstadt had a 4th Sqn, I should know as I was the SSM of that Sqn for two years. Not sure when the 4th Sqn was added but had been there at least 4 years before my arrival in 1985 and was still there when I left Lippstadt in 1989. We provided RR assets when and where needed.

I don't see any mention of Comcen Echo either which was also located at Lippstadt until it's disbandment in 1985. It’s role was Corps Commander's Special Task Comcen, tasked directly by Corps and independent of 22 Sig Regt, though as troops the parent/paying unit was 22 Sigs but Comen Echo as a unit wasn’t. (Comcen Echo was formerly part of 2 Div, but remained in BAOR when the Div relocated to York, moving to Lippstadt from Bunde.
 
Last edited:
#8
22 Signal Regiment in Lippstadt had a 4th Sqn, I should know as I was the SSM of that Sqn for two years. Not sure when the 4th Sqn was added but had been there at least 4 years before my arrival in 1985 and was still there when I left Lippstadt in 1989. We provided RR assets when and where needed.

I don't see any mention of Comcen Echo either which was also located at Lippstadt until it's disbandment in 1985. It’s role was Corps Commander's Special Task Comcen, tasked directly by Corps and independent of 22 Sig Regt, though as troops the parent/paying unit was 22 Sigs but Comen Echo as a unit wasn’t. (Comcen Echo was formerly part of 2 Div, but remained in BAOR when the Div relocated to York, moving to Lippstadt from Bunde.
Although I never served with the unit, I thought the 22 Sig Regt entry looked a bit strange, listing “HF Radio Relay” assets under 2 Sqn. I reckon your Sqn (4 Sqn) should be listed as the RR asset and 2 Sqn listed as the VHF/HF Comms Sqn, as was traditional in most BAOR R Signals Regiments.
 
#9
Although I never served with the unit, I thought the 22 Sig Regt entry looked a bit strange, listing “HF Radio Relay” assets under 2 Sqn. I reckon your Sqn (4 Sqn) should be listed as the RR asset and 2 Sqn listed as the VHF/HF Comms Sqn, as was traditional in most BAOR R Signals Regiments.
There is some debate as to when a 4th Squadron was added to the Regiment's ORBAT as in many early documents I've read only three Squadrons plus an HQ seem to be listed. I'm sure there are some old sweats of a Signals persuasion who will know the answer.
 
#11
Good Afternoon all,

After a long hiatus I have updated my tome, it is now on version 8. In the past members of ARRSE have contributed both their own stories and vital information. I am asking again for any stories or insights anyone here wants to share. The British Forces Germany Legacy Project has contacted me and I am hoping they use the document as a "moment in time" with the publishing of a book in September (British Forces in Germany 1945-2019 – The Lived Experience, already available for pre-order on Amazon) and NAM exhibit. I currently have numerous FOI requests with the MOD that I am awaiting answers/documents on. I will also be putting a thread in the Old & Bold Forum (I hope the Mods don't mind). So to all who have contributed, thank you and please even if you have any old pamphlets which you can scan with information, everything will be appreciated and acknowledged.

https://www.orbat85.nl/documents/BAOR-July-1989.pdf

Louie
Extremely interesting read

What exactly is meant by “Transition to War”
 
#12
What kind of role did they fill?
I'll ask the lad who supplied me with the original info for an example. I had little to do with them as a unit but got some cracking SNCO's and toms transferred into my squadron when they disbanded.
 
#13
What kind of role did they fill?
From said youth mentioned in post #12 - "The only one I remember was being tasked to provide a trunk link back to 1 (BR) Corps during the annual Artillery Live Firing Concentration, the guns didn’t move but the planners at Corps pretended they did and sent Fire Missions to The Battery’s from Bielefeld."

He's asking around other ex Comcen Echo peeps for further examples.
 
#14
@irlsgt and another one - "CCE took part on an Op NEO practice, providing a relay link and trunk comms for the evacuation of dependants and non combatants in the event of a war with the Soviets, I was on the POD, refuelling Dets (not all CCE, some were 7SR and 16SR (Corps Regts)) all the way from the ‘FEBA’ to the Belgian Ports."
 
#15
In 1 Arty Bde, the two General Support Groups were known as GSG North and South. The heavy Regts are correct but the FH70 Regts were TA, 100 and 101 iirc. A Bty of 8” was allocated to each GSG in the conventional role but I cannot remember which. Each GSG also had a TA Inf Bn and a TA Recce Sqn for protection of the gun positions
 
#17
There is some debate as to when a 4th Squadron was added to the Regiment's ORBAT as in many early documents I've read only three Squadrons plus an HQ seem to be listed. I'm sure there are some old sweats of a Signals persuasion who will know the answer.
4 Sqn was in existence at least as far back as 1984 and had three troops equipped with Bruin. Bravo Troop was the pure Radio Relay Troop in the Sqn and consisted of RR Ops, RR Techs and the odd ED/Combat Powerman (they were odd). There were 11 Triffid RR wagons in the troop providing UHF relay comms, and a rover/recce group (Sgt Steve 'Tenko' Tuplin). This troop deployed as individual detachments in a single RR wagon, or occasionally in two wagons to form a 'clutch.' Ex locations were high ground like the Koterberg or Bielefeld Ridge (.309) and they were pretty much free-running dets, tasked to move every 48-72 hours through BATCO although some exercises were luxuriously static. Similar in many ways to Kilo Troop of 7 Sig Regt which performed the same role for Corps Main, whilst Bravo Troop, 22 Sig Regt were Corps Rear. In 1986 the Regiment was re-equipped with Ptarmigan equipment and after conversion training at 1 Div Verdun, it was brought it into service later that year. Bravo Troop and the other troops in the Squadron were renamed. Bravo Troop became Juliet Troop and was equipped with Single Channel Radio Access (SCRA) Centrals and a rover/recce group (Sgt Bob Griffiths). This troop deployed on Ex in a similar way as before, as a single det, and it remained composed of RR Ops/Techs as Ptarmigan equipment still required heavy lifting.

If memory serves me, Comcen Echo formed one of the Squadrons; possibly 3 Sqn. They were always viewed as separate to the other Sqns.

Chodmeister arrived, banned Ron Hills under Noddy suits, Mexican taches, machete door-locking shenanigans, etc. It was all for the best I s'pose.
 
#18
I served in J Trp, 4Sqn 22 Sigs From 78-81, and ran the sqn genny bay. Tp SSGt T*** B****** OC Maj R** C****. CO Lt Col J*** A****** (SAS) loved every minute of it, 9 months of the year on exercise, and in the winter months, PSI snow queen.
Sqn genny bay. You must be an ED, guv.
 
#19
Gents,

Thank you I am taking notes from your posts and going to revise some sections.

Feu,

Thank you for the RA info, from what I have from MOD and Herts Yeo history (see Bibliography) the two TA Regts were definitely west of the Weser to give fire support to the TA Bns doing bridge guard and to contain any Soviet Abn/AIr Aslt in the CRA. Also 8 QF were definitely doing the close protection for 50 Msl, it used to be (early 80’s an before) a Regular Armd Recce Regt then Inf BN. Do you have anything firm on the TA Bns/Sqns ? According to Brig Sanders (RAC BAOR) the two TA Recce Regts were being used at an Anti-Tank/Anti-Abn Reserve in the CRA.

Louie
 
#20
Extremely interesting read

What exactly is meant by “Transition to War”
My understanding of it was that it was the period immediately before the first hostile act, where NATO forces could start to deploy/reinforce getting their forces as prepared for hostilities as could be without actually fighting. This could include movement of CSups, manpower and materiel towards the potential battlefield, whilst non-combatants were sent in the other direction. It was a political/mil act that allowed NATO forces to almost do as they wished in the FRG short of warlike acts. It sent an overt signal to the opposition that we were prepared to fight. It was not necessarily a precursor to war as it could be stopped if necessary.
 

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