Northern Ireland - British Army Equipment...?

#1
(Posting this here, after I asked in the Military History forum about it...)

I've been doing some research on the Troubles, mainly round the 80-85 period of it, mainly as it interests me quite a lot.

However, I'm stuck in regards to ground vehicles that were used - there's bugger all info on what was used, or if there is, it's incredibly sketchy, or there's very little photographic pictures of them existing - online, at any rate.

Aerial vehicles, such as the Gazelle, and the Lynx, I've got quite a bit of information on, so it's not such an issue.

Anybody able to help me here, please?
:D
 
#3
what do you want to know?

Depending on your location the vehicles would be different. A lot of white vehicle were used as APCs particularly in the country side. Green vehicles only in town or relatively safe area.
 
#5
A13x said:
I'm not sure if SAXON were being used in NI during the period he is interested in. I don't remember SAXON being deployed until the early/mid 90s when they binned the Pigs.

The most common green vehicles of that period were landrovers with Macrolon armour used in both rural and urban areas. Pigs were used in urban areas and APVs may have been in service in urban areas during that time, I am not sure when they were first deployed.

Edited to add: Does anyone know when the Shorland went out of service? I think it may still have been used at the beginning of the time frame you mentioned.
 
#6
The Shorland would still have been in and the ever trusty Humber Pig. There may also have been quite a few Saracens floating around. The Saxon didn't come in until the early 90's and later the Saxon Patrol.

Pig.



Saracen.

 
#9
We were still running Ferrets (beach buggies and turreted) in the '70s, I ve no reason to believe that they didn't survive into the '90s. Cavalry units still had the Saladin.
 
#11
In XMG in the early eighties we had had two Saracens that trundled round the town but didn't go any further...One had a red cross painted on it and was used for casevac, the other had a Browning in the wee turret. Other than that, "Eagle" was your friend and hard luck if it was foggy.
 
#12
strima said:
A13x said:
Please expand a little as my crystal ball is still in workshops!!!
The big f-off copyright theft symbol pops up, for the image ye took from planefacts mate. :roll:

Cheers for the responses so far guys.
 
#13
mnairb said:
We were still running Ferrets (beach buggies and turreted) in the '70s, I ve no reason to believe that they didn't survive into the '90s. Cavalry units still had the Saladin.
Can’t think where, Tyrone was mostly hele or white fleet unless in built up areas. UDR had some LR movement but mostly at night. No armoured vehicles at Omagh except for the Valentine at the gate. Fermanagh similar to Tyrone but more so. Local QRF would be LR any other routine patrols were hele. ATO vehicles were different but unless it was in a built up area then the RAF did the driving (when they turned up).
 
#15
Lt Col Dewar (I think) wrote the British Army in Ulster which I think had a good section on kit. Also there was a series of books by David Barzilay which, if you can get them, were fairly thorough. I seem to recall an Osprey book on kit etc which might help.

I reserve the right to be completely and comprehensively wrong as it is from memory and I am a distance from my bookshelves...
 
#16
Omagh 1982/83 the UDR used a Shorland to cover the changeover at the sangar which covered the security checkpoint into the town centre.Most other vehicles were white fleet including the little Toyota van the COP team used going in and out of Carrickmore.
 
#17
Saxon didn't come into service until late in '92. I know because I was 'responsible' for introducing it in its 'Patrol' version. You know, the one without working brakes and back doors that opened on their own (I know a few birds like that).

Weirdly, some years before ('84 I think), I also repatriated the last Saracen back to the mainland. It was a 'Special Water Dispenser' (SWD) variant held at Girdwood Park for EOD rather than crowd control duties. I operated the venerable Humber 1 Ton from '84 to '92 - the fleet was pretty big (around a couple of hundred I think) with around 90 odd being held in Moscow Camp as a reserve, mainly for when the reserve battalion fron Hollywood needed to deploy anywhere. In the mid '80s certainly (I was in Lisburn from '84-'86, then Fort Whiterock '86-'87 followed by Moscow '87-'88) there were differing amounts of Pigs and Land Rover APVs in almost every SF base, dependant on role/tasks. Even XMG had an EOD Pig! FWR in '86 (and most other West Belfast bases) had a complement of 'Kremlin' Pigs, with what we would these days call bar armour and top cover hatches. There were a limited amount of these vehicles and the main fleet were just ordinary Pigs. Other types included 'Flying' Pigs with 'wings' for riot control and 'half-Kremlin' Pigs with only part bar armour.

Outside of Belfast, Londonderry etc, there were a lot of Macralon Landrovers or 'Piglets' about in either 1/2 or 3/4 ton Series 3 (I think) variants. Not much use against IEDs............

Other green vehicles included Macralon Bedford 4 tonners (Wendy Houses)! Other (supposedly covert) vehicles were Luton vans and Pantechnicons - I often wondered why bricks were bouncing off the sides as we drove along!

In the fabled 'slipper city' of Lisburn however, I had the pleasure to command a troop of very interesting cars in the early '80s - armoured Ford Granada saloons with many a bell and whistle, Volvos, Rovers, Sierras etc etc, plus a load of unarmoured (and bog-standard) Cavaliers! We were the only people still operating Cavaliers in NI then that weren't painted in metallic colours :oops:

Interesting times - I've got some phots somewhere.........................
 
#18
RUCFOREVER said:
Omagh 1982/83 the UDR used a Shorland to cover the changeover at the sangar which covered the security checkpoint into the town centre.Most other vehicles were white fleet including the little Toyota van the COP team used going in and out of Carrickmore.
Are your date correct as I was in Omagh from Dec 82 to Jan 85 and can't remember a UDR check point in town.
 
#19
Maybe my memory is going, but I'm pretty sure that I saw a Saxon in Londonderry in either late 88/ early 89, and that it was in the middle of 2 APV's, driving round the Bogside. ISTR in perhaps mid 87 getting some sort of questionnaire regarding a replacement vehicle for the Pig, something with more troop carrying ability than the APV. I also remember escorting a macralon armoured wrecker/recovery truck from Londonderry to Belfast one night, so that's 2 x Land Rovers and a big green truck, the "Geezer" on the gate asked if we had "any Farkin ID"
 
#20
sawdogxix said:
Maybe my memory is going, but I'm pretty sure that I saw a Saxon in Londonderry in either late 88/ early 89, and that it was in the middle of 2 APV's, driving round the Bogside. ISTR in perhaps mid 87 getting some sort of questionnaire regarding a replacement vehicle for the Pig, something with more troop carrying ability than the APV. I also remember escorting a macralon armoured wrecker/recovery truck from Londonderry to Belfast one night, so that's 2 x Land Rovers and a big green truck, the "Geezer" on the gate asked if we had "any Farkin ID"
Not a 'Saxon' - probably a AT105(ish) - same as a Saxon really. You're quite right - I'm sure there was lot's of previous in terms of trials etc.

ID? You should have just driven through his gate....................
 

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