Last item of World War Two equipment in service with British Forces


What was the last piece of equipment, developed or used during WWII, still in service with HM Forces. I am not just thinking of weapons and aircraft, but vehicles, plant, field catering equipment, and anything else you can think of. Some thoughts of mine:

Mark 8 torpedo: Developed before WW2, this was still in Royal Navy service into the eighties, and was used in 1982 to sink the Argentine cruiser ARA General Belgrano.

SMLE No4 Mk1: Still sniping away in the eighties, nearly a whole century after the first Lee Enfield rifles entered service.

Gloster Meteor: Strictly speaking not in RAF service, but still working for a living doing defence work, testing ejection seats for Martin Baker.

What examples can you think of? What current or recent systems were developed from wartime research?

As an Admiral of the Fleet, the Duke is still on the active list.

In my day, we had moored mines that hailed from WW1; at least the hulls did. Hopefully the electrics and explosives were renewed once in a while.

Of course, the Mk 8 torpedoes that sank the Belgrano were a 1920s design.


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The River class minesweeper I crewed from Gorleston to London in the mid 1980s was fitted with a mint unfired Bofors 40/60 gun on a plinth forward.


When I took a look at it there was a small plate on the mounting ... . Manufactured 1942.....

In the mid 1990s I visited the DRA establishment at former P&EE Shoeburyness where a new rotary kiln for disposing of ammunition had just been installed. It could take up to 30mm rounds,so all natures of British service small arms ( and I guess we had a sh1tload of 7,62mm to get rid of)

Knowing from my RNR time that Bofors ammunition was too big to go through the kiln, I asked how they disposed of it?

They showed me a Bofors mounting pointing out to their offshore danger area.
Bofors ammunition was simply fired off, with barrels being changed whenever one wore out...
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Match Fuzee

Bangalore Torpedo.


Spitfire, Lancaster, Hurricane, and Dakota.

All still on the books of the RAF and flown and serviced by RAF Crews
The clasp knife has quite a vintage.
Do they still hand them out?
The Bayonet

Still the same as when first issued
Fit on end of rifle and stick it in Johnny Foreigner as required
Not really the same anymore, they used to make them with steel.


Was HMS Victory World War 2 kit?
No but I think the Germans still tried to bomb her.

I should have said things like historic aircraft flown for memorial purposes do not count for the purposes of this thread.

There was a story in one of the local papers that some surplus type place had sold some sort of submarine kit back to the Navy. Not sure what era it was from.

Browning Hi Power aka GP35, issued to various units in WW2, thru’ various balconies and finally replaced in 2013.
Was HMS Victory World War 2 kit?
I'm amazed that she didn't go down to the Falklands.....

Apart from being converted to mils from degrees the prismatic compasses we were issued in the late 1970s were WW2 issue, as was my first field dressing.
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