I understand that MILAN operators had to perform an annual test and fire a training round but how often did you get to fire a live, real round?
They must have a shelf live similar to other munnitions and there must have been a Cold War stock pile in BAOR, so what happened to the old stock?


Book Reviewer
Returned to manufacturer, and refurbished , to be resold to another country would seem to be the obvious answer
We did the infantry feasibilty trials for Milan down on the Salisbury Plains back in about 1975/6ish. The Milan at the time was a lump of concrete set onto a metal frame with legs which we had to lump around on the ground and in and out of vehicles and helicopters. One of the upsides of of the work was that we got a few rides in a chinook helicopter, something that the RAF were not to get for a couple of more years yet. Being used to working with helicopters where the last place you approached them from was the rear, it was quite novel to jump on the chinook.
I was very fortunate to fire a Milan once, and subsequently had to get a crate in.

I hit the paper mover, but missed the static hard target when going for the turret ring hit.
Am sure when Dingger was at Batus, he had to render safe a lot of milan rounds/rockets.
His method was to detonate them with PE4 as the initiator.
There was a practice round initially, inert warhead for use against a manned target tank. It was abandoned, along with the tank, when shelf life expired HEAT round became available.

The simulator was a bit basic, but it taught the skills required. We had a near 100% hit rate with live missiles, under simulated combat conditions, not counting ones that went rogue.


There was a MILAN conc at Putlos in the summer of 89, where we spent a fortnight flying teams in and out of the range complex. Most days we did the low level route past the nudist beach to give the lads something to look at. No idea how many rounds went down the range, but it was a fun-packed seaside holiday for some of us.
being a shiny arrse, i never even got to hold one, never mind fire one. However, in basic in 1981, I was on the pish in Covent Garden. Over heard a conversation between an olive skinned Italian belissimo, and a Day 5 week 1 army recruit. He was clearly making no headway whatsoever with her, and I listened in out of morbid curiosity.
Squaddie: So , where you from then?

Belissimo: Eeetaly
Squaddie: Where in Italy?
Belissimo: Milan
Squaddie: Oh right...........
Cue embarrassing lull in conversation, whilst he desperately casts around for the killer line. Then a light comes on in his eyes, a sly smile forms on his lips, as he realises he has her where he wants her.
Squaddie: Do you know you have an effective killing range of up to 2000 metres?
Blank looks all round....
I wish I had bought him a drink.

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