Vehicles used in N Ireland by the Paras

#1
I was wondering what vehicles did the Para's use when on patrol during the Seventies and early eighties in urban situation ? Was it predominatly the pig and open topped landrover or did they use Saracen and feret as well?
 
#4
Paras in Belfast 79 used opened top lannys like us, only sarries i saw then were around turf lodge or andy town, besides convoy through twinny
 
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#5
gauis said:
What did the guys prefer to use was it the Saracen cause of the 30 cal browning or the landrovers for mobility?
DMS Boots were the most common 'vehicles' around that time, just before the advent of the NI High leg patrol boot.

I don't ever recall seeing a .30 mounted in an urban area and I was in Belfast in 1980. Couldn't see that you'd be able to use one in an urban unless you absolutely, positively just had to kill everyone the whole street.

Saracens (if my memory serves me well) around that time were used in urban areas only by the ATO and as Ambulances.

As for 'preference'......you never had any. You drove what you there was. Humbers & Lannies (open topped or Macrallon coated)
 
#6
I was going to say that about the 30 cal. as in pictures from late seventies in Belfast none of the Saracen had them. Mind you loads of pictures of Saracens up to 75/76 do.
 
#7
Didnt the peelers kill Paddy Rooney (aged 9) with a Shorland mounted MG in Divis?
IIRC their use was frowned on after that 'cept in the Light Role out of town.
 
#8
Yes also killed a squaddie home on leave
 
#9
scarletto said:
Paras in Belfast 79 used opened top lannys like us, only sarries i saw then were around turf lodge or andy town, besides convoy through twinny
70-72, 2 PARA used landrover with windscreen folded and doors and canopy off. They worked on the basis that a stripped vehicle was easier to deploy from than an enclosed model. 1 PARA made much use of pigs (vehicles not the animal) - mostly embellished with label 'This little piggy goes to Hollywood'
 
#10
scarletto said:
Yes also killed a squaddie home on leave
Yep, we had that discussion a couple of weeks ago. It was after that they brought the Yellow Card in.
 
#11
OldRedCap said:
scarletto said:
Paras in Belfast 79 used opened top lannys like us, only sarries i saw then were around turf lodge or andy town, besides convoy through twinny
70-72, 2 PARA used landrover with windscreen folded and doors and canopy off. They worked on the basis that a stripped vehicle was easier to deploy from than an enclosed model.
They also learned very quickly to fit wire cutters to the front bumpers. Give old PIRA their due, they were quick to try out new ideas and cheesewire was a popular one for a while.
 
#12
Remember reading in British army in Ulster vol 1 about the 14/20 Royal Hussars using there 30 cals on there ferets on Broadway after operation Motorman. Also in whiterock in may 1972
 
#13
My Bn came back from a short holiday in 74 and were commenting that MGs were now not to be used in town.

As for the veh you got what the unit before handed over to you, you did not bring your own. Although spearhead may be the exception in the early days. We also had 4 toners.
 
#15
We had a lad in XMG in 1979 who had an ND with the .30 cal, no injuries but he took the guttering and half the roof off a house.
 
#16
No 30cal on Saracens in Belfast throughout the 70s - early to mid 80s, can recall the PRB from Ballykinler bringing their Ferrets complete with 30cal to the Falls one summer in the very early 1970s. Did, once or twice, take GPMGs on foot patrols in certain areas of West Belfast.
Don't forget those bloody awful 'Macrolon' LRs. But mostly the mode of transport was Boots DMS and later boots urban patrol NI!
 
#17
I did all but one of my tours in Andytown from '73 onwards.

Sarrycan's unless 'bloodwagons' had .30 Cal in the turrets but not often loaded.

GPMG's were fairly routine in that area up to about 74/75 but tracer was removed and a blank substituted so that max burst was four rounds.

Quite a few houses in Lenadoon, Glassmullen and Ladybrook had pock-marked walls from the months after Motorman.

I can't remember which Tour this was taken on but it was somewhere near the quarry on Black Mountain above Andytown.

 
#18
CC. Granted during 'Motorman' Saracens made a brief appearance with 30cal in Atown, not afterwards I commanded a platoon working in that area circa '73 and would have appreciated the fire power on occasion!
 
#19
There were still Saracens in XMG with .30 mounted in 1984, although they never left the base for obvious reasons!
 
#20
There were still Saracens in XMG with .30 mounted in 1984, although they never left the base for obvious reasons!
 

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