1st Airlanding Brigade (United Kingdom)


1st Airlanding Brigade (United Kingdom)

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name= 1st Airlanding Brigade


caption=The divisional shoulder flash of the airborne forces
dates= 10 December 1941
country= Great Britain
allegiance=
branch= British Army
type= Airlanding
role= Glider-borne Infantry
size=Brigade
command_structure=
garrison=
current_commander=
ceremonial_chief=
colonel_of_the_regiment=
notable_commanders= Brig. Phillip Hicks
identification_symbol=
identification_symbol_2=
nickname=
patron=
motto=
colors=
march=
mascot=
battles= Sicily Landings
Operation Market Garden
anniversaries=
decorations=
battle_honours=

History

Formed as the 1st Airlanding Brigade Group on 10 Dec 1941 by redesignation of 31st Independent Infantry Brigade Group and assigned 1st Airborne Division. The brigade was, at the time, in Wales and had just completed mountain warfare training.

Redesignated 10 Mar 1943 as a brigade [although units forming the group became part of 1st Airborne Division troops during 1942] . In May 1943, prior to shipping to Tunisia, the brigade gave up two battalions to form the new 6th Airlanding Brigade.

Sicily and Italy

The brigade entered combat the night of 9/10 Jul 1943, landing in Sicily. They took over the defence of Syracuse 11 Jul 1943, and left from there 13 Jul 1943 to return to Tunisia. The brigade sailed with its division to Taranto, arriving 9 Sep 1943. It then left for the United Kingdom in Nov 1943.

6th Brigade

The 1st Airlanding brigade was then renamed as the 6th Airlanding Brigade and in 1944 was part of the Airborne assault in the invasion of Normandy on 6 June. The 1st Airborne division was then brought up to strength with the creation of a new 1st Airlanding Brigade

Operation Market Garden

The new brigade went into action 17 September 1944 when dropped into Arnhem during Operation Market Garden. The brigade was in a pocket with 1st Airborne Division until the remnants were withdrawn on the night of 24/25 Sep 1944. The remnants were returned to the UK 29-30 September 1944. The brigade was gradually reformed. On 11 May 1945 it moved to Oslo, remaining in Norway until the end of the summer when it returned to the UK.

Component units

1st Bn The Border Regiment
2nd Bn The South Staffordshire Regiment
2nd Bn Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry : to 15 May 1943
1st Bn R Ulster Rifles : to 15 May 1943
7th Bn K O Scottish Borderers : from 6 Dec 1943

Units Assigned to in 1942

1st Airlanding Light Battery RA: 10 Dec 1941 - 27 Sep 1942
1st Airlanding AT Battery RA: 10 Dec 1941 - 27 Sep 1942
9th Field Coy RE: 10 Dec 1941 - 18 Jun 1942
1st Airlanding Recce Sqn: 10 Dec 1941 - 30 Dec 1942
1st Airlanding Bde Gp Coy RASC: 10 Dec 1941 - 30 Apr 1942
181st Field Ambulance: 10 Dec 1941 - 30 Mar 1942

Commanding Officers

10 Dec 1941: Brig G.F. Hopkinson
6 Apr 1943: Brig P.H.W. Hicks
11 Dec 1944: Lt-Col R. Payton Reid (acting)
14 Dec 1944: Brig R.H. Bower

Sources

Information based on Lt. Col. H. F.Joslen, Orders of Battle, Second World War, 1939-1945 History of the Second World War, United Kingdom Military Series (London: Her Majesty's Stationary Office, 1960 in 2 vols; reprinted London: The London Stamp Exchange, 1990 in one vol) and Lt-Col T. B. H. Otway, Airborne Forces The Second World War 1939-1945, Army (London: Imperial War Museum, Department of Printed Books, 1990; originally published as Confidential volume 1951 by the War Office)


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