29 Commando Regiment RA

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'29 Commando Regiment RA'

The first Army Commandos were raised by a Gunner, Lt Col John Durnford-Slater RA in June 1940, following the defeat ending with the evacuation at Dunkirk, The Commandos struck at the German forces at a time when Britain was otherwise powerless. Raids were made on the coasts of Norway, France and the Mediterranean. By the time of the Normandy landings of 6 June 1944, the Commando forces were of a considerable size and had played a vital part on operations in all theatres of war.

148 ( Meiktila ) Battery

148 (Meiktila) Commando Forward Observation Battery Royal Artillery is a Commando-trained unit of specialist Naval Gunfire Forward Observers. Although part of 29th Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, it conducts many operations separately from the rest of the regiment. Royal Artillery batteries are usually named after one of their battle honours; the Battle of Meiktila occurred in Burma in February/March 1945, with 148 Battery firing its 25-pounder guns in support of 255th Armoured Brigade. 
 

History

79 (Kirkee) Battery

The Battery converted to the Commando role on 15th May 1962. Two years later saw the Regiment based in Singapore and serving in Borneo and Malaya where it saw action in the jungle role. The early seventies saw the battery based in Malta until it returned to The Royal Citadel in 1974. The troubles in Northern Ireland saw the Battery deployed on four Operation BANNER tours. The Battery has also served as part of the UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus on two occasions, the last in 1995.

8 (Alma) Battery

Commando trained. Currently based in the Royal Citadel Plymouth the Battery is known as "Black Eight" because of their efforts at the Battle of Alma where the Battery fired more rounds than any other leaving the faces of the gunners black with powder stains. Black Eight is the second gun battery in 29 Cdo. Regiment and is also equipped with six 105mm Light Guns and three Observation Parties.

95 Commando (Light) Regt. RA

The origin of this unit was the 95th Amphibious Observation Regiment RA formed in the early 1950's, which was redesignated as 95th Commando Amphibious Observation Regiment RA in 1962. On the 18th March 1964 it was redesignated as 95 Commando Light Regiment RA. On the 1st May 1971 it was again redesignated as  95th Commando Forward Observer Unit RA and joined with 29 Commando Regiment RA.
 

BROWN, Christopher Charles

Lieutenant General
497571
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Mentioned in Despatches
Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service
Captain Christopher Brown, 29 Commando Regiment RA, was a Naval Gunfire Spotter attached to Special Forces during the Falklands War. He received a Mention in despatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service between 25 April to 15 June 1982 [1] [2].
  • 30 Sept 1987 promoted Major [3].

CARNS, Alistair Scott

Colonel
N029561Y
Royal Marines
Royal Marines
Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
Military Cross (MC)
Mentioned in Despatches
Captain Alistair Carns RM was awarded the Military Cross in recognition of gallant and distinguished services in Afghanistan 1st October 2010 to 31st March 2011 [1]

CUTTING, Robert Steven

Gnr Robert Cutting 29 Commando
Gunner
24167846
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died on active service

Gunner Robert Cutting, aged 18, from Blackley Manchester, was shot dead at 4am whilst on foot patrol at the junction of Lepper Street and Stratheden Street, in the New Lodge area of Belfast. This was a blue on blue incident.

DANE, James Thomas

Bombardier
23529779
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died on active service
Bombardier James Dane died when he fell over a cliff while on operations against dissident tribesmen in Aden. He was attached to 2nd Bn., Parachute Regiment at the time. Buried Silent Valley Cemetery later reinterred to Dundalk.
 
Sources
AFM ROH
British Casualties, Aden 1955-1967.
 

DORNAN, Mark Alexander Alford

Colonel
547899
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
December 1997 commissioned into the RA.
June 1998 posted 29 Commando Regiment RA, 8 (Alma) Battery. 
9 July 2000 promoted Captain.
31 July 2006 promoted Major
2013 Second in Command 29 Commando Regiment RA.
30 June 2016 promoted Lieutenant Colonel.

DWYER, James Edward

LBdr James Dwyer
Lance Bombardier
25173531
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Killed in action or died of wounds

Lance Bombardier James Dwyer died whilst on a patrol in Southern Helmand province when the vehicle he was driving struck an anti-tank mine. [Source: MOD]

ECCLESTON, Gary

Gunner
24444973
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Gunner Gary Eccleston, Bty. Cmdr's radio operator, received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of service during the operations in the South Atlantic on the night of 11/12 June 1982.
 
Source
London Gazette 49134 page 12852.
National Archives file WO373/188/308.
 

EVE, Keith Richard Hubert

Lieutenant Colonel
397236
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Lieutenant Colonel Keith Eve deployed with 29 Commando Regiment as Liaison Officer Naval Gunfire Support during the Falklands War. He received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service during the operations in the South Atlantic in 1982.
 
Sources
London Gazette 49134, page 12852.

FARRAGHER, Kieran Joseph

Known as: 
Joe
Warrant Officer Class 2
24155023
95 Cdo. Regt.RA
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
SAS
Royal Artillery
Died in service

Warrant Officer Kieran Farragher, attached to the Special Air Service, died in a climbing accident in Botswana. He had joined the SAS in 1973 having previously served in 95 Commando and 29 Commando Regt RA.

FRANCIS, John

Warrant Officer Class 2
23953947
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Warrant Officer 2 John Francis was the Battery Sergeant Major of 7 (Sphinx) Commando Battery during the Falklands War. He received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of gallant and distinguished service during the operations in the South Atlantic in 1982.
 
Sources
London Gazette 49134, page 12852.

GROVES, Richard Geoffrey

Warrant Officer Class 2
24802235
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service
Warrant Officer Richard Groves received the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in Afghanistan during the period 1st October 2006 to 31st March 2007.
 
Sources
London Gazette Supp. 58396, page 10412.
Globe and Laurel Jul/Aug. 2007 edition.
 

HOLROYD-SMITH, Michael John

Brigadier
460614
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Lieutenant Colonel Michael Holroyd-Smith, Commanding Officer 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, was appointed O.B.E. (Military Division) in recognition of service within the operations in the South Atlantic during the Falklands War [1][2].
  • 30 June 1985 promoted Colonel [3].
  • 31 December 1990 promoted Brigadier [4].

HOLT, Edward Morris

Bombardier
24167965
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Military Medal (MM)
Bombardier Edward Holt was awarded the Military Medal in recognition of gallant and distinguished service during operations in the South Atlantic.
Citation

JACKSON, John Rodney

Bombardier
24130402
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Bombardier John Jackson received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of service during the operations in the South Atlantic. He was second in command of an Artillery and Naval Gunfire Forward Observation Party grouped with a company of 3 Para during the period 5 - 14 June 1982.
 
Sources
London Gazette 49134 page 12853.

JACKSON, Warren Edward

Known as: 
Jacko
Warrant Officer Class 2
24801492
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died in service
Warrant Officer Warren Jackson, 148 (Meiktila) Battery, died in a road traffic collision on the A31 at Almer, nr Winchester.  [Sources: AFM ROH / Commando Gunner website / Bournemouth Echo.]
 

LAMBERT-GORWYN, Martin

Lieutenant Colonel
24182632 & 539393
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
Warrant Officer Class 1 Martin Lambert-Gorwyn, 29 Commando Regiment RA,  was commisioned Second Lieutenant 7 April 1992 with seniority 7 April 1988; To be Lieutenant 7 April 1992 with seniority 7 April 1990 [1].
  • 7 April 1994 promoted Captain [2].
  • 3 September 2004 (Major) promoted Lieutenant Colonel [3].

MAKEIG-JONES, Robin John

Major
498932
3 Cdo. Bde. RM
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Captain Robin Makeig-Jones, 29 Commando Regiment, attached as a pilot to 3 Commando Brigade Air Squadron, received a Mention in Despatches [1] in recognition of his courage in the air, and devotion to duty, on the night of 13/14 June 1982 during the operation to take the Wireless Ridge feature to the North West of Stanley.

McCRACKEN, William Andrew

Captain William McCracken 29 Commando
Captain
501653
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Military Cross (MC)
Citation: "Captain William McCracken, 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, was in command of an Artillery and Naval Gunfire Forward Observation Party grouped with B Company 3rd Battalion Parachute Regiment during the period 13th-14th June 1982.

MCINTOSH, Graeme

Captain
24652124 & 564992
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Queen's Gallantry Medal (QGM)
Warrant Officer Class 1 Graeme McIntosh RA was commissioned Captain on the 2nd April 2006 with seniority from 2nd April 2004 [1].
  • Captain Graeme McIntosh was awarded the Queen's Gallantry Medal in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in Afghanistan during the period 1st October 2006 to 31st March 2007 [2]

MCLAUGHLIN, Liam

Known as: 
Paddy
LBdr Liam McLaughlan
LBdr Ross Clark (left) and LBdr Liam 'Paddy' McLaughlin
Lance Bombardier
25155657
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Killed in action or died of wounds
Lance Bombardier Liam McLaughlin, and his friend and colleague, LBdr. Ross Clark,  both died during an enemy rocket attack whilst deployed in the Sangin area of Helmand province. [Source: MOD]
 

MCMANNERS, Joseph Hugh

Captain Joseph McManners 29 Commando
Major
495368
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Captain Joseph McManners received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of service during the operations in the South Atlantic between 21st May and 15th June 1982 [1].
He was commanding a Naval Gunfire Forward Observation Party of 148 (Meiktila) Commando Battery RA for the duration of Operation Sutton .

O'FLAHERTY, Denis William Venables Patrick

Denis William Venables Patrick O'Flaherty
Brigadier O'Flaherty
Lieutenant (later Brigadier)
106695
No 3 Commando
Royal Artillery
Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Distinguished Service Order (DSO)
Mentioned in Despatches
Bronze Star Medal (USA)
Lieutenant Denis O'Flaherty, No. 3 Commando 6 troop, was awarded the Distinguished Service Order, and additionally Mentioned in Despatches, in recognition of gallant and distinguished service in successful combined operations against the enemy at Vaagso and Maaloy on December 27th 1941 [1][1a][2].

ODAMS, Richard

Known as: 
George
Lance Bombardier
24201356
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died in service

Lance Bombardier Richard Odams,  born in West Hartlepool Durham, died in a boating accident whilst serving with 8 Bty. 

Sources
AFM ROH
Commando Gunner website
CVA Forum message in his name
 

PAGE, Jack

Staff Sergeant (Battery Quartermaster Sergeant)
22529220
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
British Empire Medal (BEM)
Staff Sergeant  Jack Page, BQMS to 8 Alama Bty., was awarded the B.E.M. (Military Division) on the 1st January 1973 [1].
 

POWELL, Adrian Mark

Known as: 
Ade
Trooper
24876485
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
SAS
Royal Artillery
Died in service

Trooper Adrian Powell died in a road traffic collision whilst serving with the SAS. He had previously served with  7 and 148 Btys. of 29 Commando Regt. RA, and 7 RHA.  He died when the vehicle in which he was travelling overturned while on way to training exercises near Nairobi in Kenya.

Also killed in this collision was 24648153 SSgt. Martin Halls, SAS, formerly Royal Engineers.

RICHARDS, Malcolm Douglas

Warrant Officer Class 2
23942520
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Warrant Officer 2 Malcolm Richards received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of his service during operations in the South Atlantic between 25 April - 15 June 1982. He had been appointed a Naval Gunfire Liaison Officer during this period, serving on HMS Plymouth, HMS Alacrity, HMS Avenger, HMS Yarmouth, and HMS Active.
 
Sources

ROFFEY, Charles David

Lieutenant
470141
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died in service

Lieutenant Charles Roffey died in road accident in Johore Bahru Malaysia.

Sources
AFM ROH.
Report in the Birmingham Daily Post 27 December 1963.
Commando Gunner website/3845 Gnr Wilson I.F.

ROMBERG, Christopher Roy

Captain
505905
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Captain Christopher Romberg received a Mention in Despatches [1] in recognition of his service on the night of 9 June 1982 whilst accompnaying a fighting patrol from 42 Commando RM. He was the Forward Observation Officer of 79 (Kirkee) Commando Battery RA during Operation Sutton [2].

SAWYER, Thomas Herbert John

Captain Tom Sawyer
Captain
556455
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Killed in action or died of wounds
Captain Thomas Sawyer died in an explosion while taking part in a joint operation with a Danish Battle Group and the Afghan National Army north east of Gereshk in central Helmand. He was in a fire support team that was engaged in an operation to clear compounds in a known Taliban stronghold. Also killed was Corporal Danny Winter 45 Commando RM.

SCOULLAR, Mark James

Major
24826443
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
29 April 2010 Warrant Officer 1 commissioned Captain.
31 July 2016 promoted Major.
July 2021 Second in Command 29 Commando Regiment RA.
 
Sources
London Gazette 59408, page 7962.
London Gazette 61662, page 16590.
 

SEATH, David Bernard

Captain
30039690
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died in service

Captain David Seath died of a cardiac arrest whilst taking part in the 2016 London Marathon. He was a fire support team commander for 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery, based in Plymouth.

SHAMS, Dean

Lance Corporal
24645336
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers
Died in service

Lance Corporal Dean Shams, REME, died whilst serving with 29 Commando, 79 Kirkee Cdo Bty. Fitter section in Belize. He slipped and fell into one of the chutes at the falls near Baldy Beacon.  No one had seen him fall. He was missing for 8 days before the water level dropped and his body found trapped amongst rocks.

SIMCOX, Howard Robert

Known as: 
Twink
Howard Simcox 29 Commando
Bombardier
24082571
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
British Empire Medal (BEM)
Bombardier Howard Simcox was awarded the British Empire Medal on 31 December 1987.
 
Sources
[1] London Gazette 51171, page 19.
[Image] James Walton, 8 Alma Commando Battery.
 

SMITH, Kevin John

Known as: 
Smudger
Gunner
24148518
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died in service

Gunner Kevin Smith, 79 Bty.,  died in a fall from the wall of Mosta magazine in Malta.

"Whilst the rest of the detachment waited for transport up to the main magazine Smudger decided to climb up, he nearly made it when he unfortunately slipped and fell about 100 feet." *

SMITH, Michael

Known as: 
Mick
Warrant Officer Class 2
24714498
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Killed in action or died of wounds
Warrant Officer Michael Smith died from injuries sustained when a grenade was fired at the UK base in Sangin, Helmand Province. He had served in the military for almost 22 years and during that service had deployed on operations to Northern Ireland, Iraq, Kuwait and Afghanistan, some of them on more than one occasion, as well as on exercises to Brunei, Canada, Kenya, France and Norway.

THOMAS, John David

Gunner
23880980
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct
Gunner John Thomas, 145 (Maiwand) Commando Battery, RA, received the Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct for his gallantry and determination in Brunei on the 28th December, 1962, in plunging into a flooded river and rescuing a comrade from drowning.
 
Sources
London Gazette Supp. 43007, page 4683.
 

TINNION, Bradley

Known as: 
Brad
Bombardier
24852343
SAS
Special Air Service
Mentioned in Despatches
Killed in action or died of wounds
Bombardier Bradley Tinnion, 22 Special Air Service Regiment, died of wounds when hit by machine gun fire during an operation to rescue and evacuate six Army hostages out of the jungle in Sierra Leone (Operation Barras).
Mentioned in Despatches (posthumous) in recognition of gallant and distinguished service. Former service included 29 Commando RA until 1998. 

WARING, Mark Evan

Lieutenant
501715
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Lieutenant Mark Waring received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of his service during operations in the South Atlantic between 21 May - 15 June 1982. He was the Gun Position Officer of 8 (Alma) Commando Battery RA throughout Operation Sutton - the landings on the shores of San Carlos Water, at Ajax Bay and Port San Carlos on East Falkland.
 

WILLIAMS, Mark Graham

Lieutenant
501719
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Mentioned in Despatches
Lieutenant Mark Williams received a Mention in Despatches in recognition of his service during operations in the South Atlantic between 21 May - 15 June 1982. He was the Gun Position Officer of 7 (Sphinx) Commando Battery RA throughout Operation Sutton - the landings on the shores of San Carlos Water, at Ajax Bay and Port San Carlos on East Falkland.
 

WILSON, Neil

Lieutenant Colonel
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery

Commanding Officer 29 Commando Regiment RA during operations in Afghanistan.

Sources
Globe and Laurel Jul/Aug.2007.
Numerous media reports.

 

WRIGHT, Barry Robert

Known as: 
Baz
Bombardier
24705801
29 Cdo. Regt.RA
Royal Artillery
Died in service
Bombardier Barry Wright died as a result of a road traffic collision. He served with 7 Bty and 49 Fld Regt. 
 
Sources
AFM ROH
Obituaries in RMRO 111 dated 20th Nov. 1989
Commando Gunner website
 

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