MSO in BAOR

#1
I can't seem to find any information on what happened to the "Mixed Service Order" geezers. These were stateless people who were employed by the British Army in BAOR as drivers, clerks, mechanics etc. All that comes up on the internet is E-Bay shite like capbadges, long-service medals and stuff like that. Whatever happened to these people? Are they still there? And if not, where did they go? Were they officially disbanded? When?
Anybody know?

MsG
 
#2
I seem to recall two groups, one of which was stationed at Tilshead in a few huts behind (EOD?)Westdown camp; who from memory were dressed by the Senior Service! Yep they all looked like submariners in there white jumpers and beige duffle coats, nice old guys who would always wave fron the back of their three tonner. This was up until 1971.
The other group where in Hohne and drove tank transporters and where still there when I left in 74, the vast majority of them must be dead by now.
 
#3
The last guys I saw were guarding the magazine in the woods at Hohneberg. That was in 1983.
Just across from Roberts Barracks Osnabruck.
 
#4
Actually, the ones I remember (late 60s, early 70s) used to wear the old BDs with a gigantic, round capbadge easily two inches across.

MsG
 
#5
Try ringing 16 Tank Transporter Sqn in Fally. They have an ex-mojo working for them in their Tpt Office. They also have a Sqn Museum with loads of memorabilia in it.

PM me for me for more info.

Hope this helps.
 
#7
There was also the MSO Guard Service (Who wore Navy Blue BD's) as well as the Labour Service (Pioneer Corps) and RCT MSO Transport Squadrons driving 10 and 4 Tonners, Coach's as well as Tank Transporters. The Tank Transporter Mojo's were all Polish and had retired by the late 1980's. The MSO Guard and Labour Services continued into the 90's using guest labour from Turkey, Pakistan and other Non-EU Countries.

There were also UK based Displaced Persons Camps at Bicester, Chilwell & Donnington who worked in the Ordnance Depots, and local Polish and Ukraine communities still exsist in those areas. I am sure there were more locations than those listed.

MSO stands for Mixed Service Organisation by the way.
 
#8
I seem to remember an article in Sodier about the disbandment of the tank transport mojos at Hohne. Would have been late 80's. Whatever happed to them I don't know -perhaps those still alive returned to their native countries after the fall of the Warsaw Pact.
 
#9
Would the so called Germany Guard Service at JHQ Rheindahlen count as MSO? I seem to remember them from being there as a spacey, seemed like an armed MoD guard service but with more frightening facial hair.
 
#10
BlackHand said:
I seem to remember an article in Sodier about the disbandment of the tank transport mojos at Hohne. Would have been late 80's. Whatever happed to them I don't know -perhaps those still alive returned to their native countries after the fall of the Warsaw Pact.
Some of these chaps were veyr old and told some interesting stories-claiming to be the remants of the Polish Armoured Division.

The other interesting bunch were the MCTG. I think the differenc between the MSO and the MCTG is that the MSOs were formed from Displaced Persons - poles and other eastern Europeans, while the MCTG were formed from ex German PW to supply the PW camps..

Bother were organised as "Native Troops" with a British OC and key SNCOs over a "Native" officer and NCO structure.

The OC of 632 MCTG once showed me the Stammline of his unit could be traced directly to a Luftwaffe Parachute Corps Transport Column. Appranrty they had reunions with alt kameraden. Are these the last surviving elements of the Wehrmacht?
 
#11
Pteranadon said:
The other interesting bunch were the MCTG. I think the differenc between the MSO and the MCTG is that the MSOs were formed from Displaced Persons - poles and other eastern Europeans, while the MCTG were formed from ex German PW to supply the PW camps..
Yes I remember the Mobile Civilian Work Groups (aka MCTG) at Warendorf Packed POL Depot. As you say they were ex German POW's and they wore Green Jackets and a Wehrmacht looking peaked cap. Also had them at 3BAD at Bracht as well as a MSO Group! I also remember we had German civi Feuerwerker (fireworkers) in charge of Junior Ammunition Technicians and Process Buildings.
 
#12
Mike_2817 said:
Pteranadon said:
The other interesting bunch were the MCTG. I think the differenc between the MSO and the MCTG is that the MSOs were formed from Displaced Persons - poles and other eastern Europeans, while the MCTG were formed from ex German PW to supply the PW camps..
Yes I remember the Mobile Civilian Work Groups (aka MCTG) at Warendorf Packed POL Depot. As you say they were ex German POW's and they wore Green Jackets and a Wehrmacht looking peaked cap. Also had them at 3BAD at Bracht as well as a MSO Group! I also remember we had German civi Feuerwerker (fireworkers) in charge of Junior Ammunition Technicians and Process Buildings.
About when was that, Mike?

MsG
 
#13
Wasn't the origin of this the moment we realised it wasn't good form to hand over loads of Poles, Ukrainians and others to Stalin so we might as well give them jobs? There were some weird-arsed paramilitary outfits made up of those characters in the 50s, intended to be sent into the eastern bloc to start trouble "when it all kicked off", some of which were under cover as these sort of labour and guard jobs.
 

cpunk

LE
Moderator
#15
whiffler said:
I'm just spending a few moments to ponder the likely success rate of them going in under-cover as Tank transport drivers.
But bear in mind their previous occupations as, for example, Waffen-SS soldiers and you might see some utility...
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#16
I remember one of the dog handlers in Hameln was the son of a Pole in one of those orgs. He was mad as a bag of squirrels. The ones I remember were cleaning victorian ordnance from shoeburyness mud flats etc! Nice blokes even if their English was worse than my Polish. I cant even swear in Polish, I know shocking isnt it!
 
#17
I thought MSO stood for Misplaced Services Organisation - but I could be wrong - certainly we had them at HQ 1 Div upuntil I left in '76 and probably long after that. The head Mojo was a fasinating guy to talk too - hed been in the resitance during the war and loved regaling tales about blowing up boxheads etc.
We used to take them on exercise as well - they had very odd sleeping bags which appeared to have arms and legs - bizarre
 

Mr Happy

LE
Moderator
#18
ugly said:
I remember one of the dog handlers in Hameln was the son of a Pole in one of those orgs. He was mad as a bag of squirrels. The ones I remember were cleaning victorian ordnance from shoeburyness mud flats etc! Nice blokes even if their English was worse than my Polish. I cant even swear in Polish, I know shocking isnt it!
Son, have a quiet word with yourself....
 

Mr Happy

LE
Moderator
#19
OSACIN said:
We used to take them on exercise as well - they had very odd sleeping bags which appeared to have arms and legs - bizarre
Deutsche sleeping backs had arms and a hood, not so sure about legs but a joy to do guard duty in, sitting there in the dark, rifle across your lap, Plt Sgt rolls past, you move arms a bit and he assumes your arc is open and your weapon at the ready...
 
#20
This is an old thread, I wonder if anyone is still following it. I was employed in MCTG and MSO units in Celle, Nienburg, Liebenau and Hohne from 1974 to 1979.

One difference was that the MSO was more military than the MCTG that wore civvies and employed mainly Germans. The MSO was open to anyone to join except Germans, and those that had not served in an armed force were required to do basic training at MSO HQ in Hamm.
 

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