30th (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Brigade
|30th (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Brigade|
|Active||1 November 1936–1 March 1954|
|Part of||2nd AA Division
7th AA Division
- 62nd (North and East Riding) Anti-Aircraft Brigade, Royal Artillery (RA) – Heavy Anti-Aircraft (HAA) unit formed in 1936 by conversion of 73rd (Northumbrian) Field Brigade, RA
- HQ at Kingston upon Hull
- 172nd (1st East Riding) AA Battery
- 173rd (2nd East Riding) AA Battery
- 174th (1st North Riding) AA Battery
- 175th (2nd North Riding) AA Battery
- 63rd (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Brigade RA – HAA unit formed in 1936 by conversion of 55th (Northumbrian) Medium Brigade, RA
- HQ at Sunderland
- 176th (Durham) AA Battery
- 177th (Durham) AA Battery
- 178th (Durham) AA Battery
- 64th (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Brigade RA – HAA unit formed in 1936 by conversion of batteries from Tynemouth Heavy Brigade RA
- HQ at North Shields
- 179th (Tynemouth) AA Battery converted from 150 Heavy Battery
- 180th (Tynemouth) AA Battery converted from 152 Heavy Battery
- 268th (Durham) AA Battery raised 1939
- 37th (Tyne) Anti-Aircraft Battalion (Tyne Electrical Engineers), Royal Engineers (RE) – Searchlight unit formed in 1936 by expansion of 307 (Tyne) AA S/L Coy RE (Tyne Electrical Engineers)
- HQ at Tynemouth
- 307th AA Company
- 308th AA Company
- 348th AA Company
- 349th AA Company
- 47th (The Durham Light Infantry) Anti-Aircraft Battalion, RE – Searchlight unit formed in 1936 by conversion of 7th Battalion Durham Light Infantry
- HQ at Sunderland
- 386th AA Company
- 387th AA Company
- 388th AA Company
- 389th AA Company
In 1938 the RA replaced its traditional unit designation 'Brigade' by the modern 'Regiment', which allowed the 'AA Groups' to take the more usual formation title of 'Brigades'. Anti-Aircraft Command was formed in April 1939 to control all the TA's AA units and formations. 30th AA Brigade transferred to the new 7th AA Division when that was formed in Newcastle in June 1939. As AA Command continued to expand, 62nd AA Brigade and 47th Searchlight Battalion moved to other brigades in 7 AA Division and were replaced by newly formed units.
World War II
On the outbreak of war 30th AA Brigade was mobilised to defend its home area of Tyneside and Sunderland, with the following order of battle:
- 63rd (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery – as above
- 64th (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery – as above
- 87th Anti-Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery – HAA unit formed at Hebburn May 1939
- 37th (Tyne Electrical Engineers) AA Battalion RE – as above
- 5th Battalion, Royal Northumberland Fusiliers (53rd Searchlight Regiment) – searchlight unit formed at Walker-on-Tyne in 1939 by conversion of infantry battalion
In 1940, RA regiments equipped with 3-inch or 3.7-inch AA guns were designated Heavy Anti-Aircraft (HAA) to distinguish them from the new Light Anti-Aircraft (LAA) regiments, and RE AA battalions were transferred to the RA and designated Searchlight regiments.
- 63 (Northumbrian) HAA Regt – as above
- 64 (Northumbrian) HAA Regt – as above
- 37 (Tyne Electrical Engineers) LAA Regt – duplicate of 37 AA Battalion RE (above), organised on 28 August 1939 as an LAA Regiment RA
- 38 LAA Regt (part) – new unit raised on 28 August 1939 in North Yorkshire
As the war progressed, many experienced prewar AA units were deployed overseas and replaced in Home Forces by newer units, often 'mixed' units including personnel from the Auxiliary Territorial Service or members of the Home Guard. 37 LAA Regt went first to Palestine in April 1942 and then moved on to North Africa; 63 HAA Regt went to Ceylon in May 1942; 38 LAA Regt went to North Africa in August 1942  and 64 HAA Regt went to Tunisia in May 1943.
On 30 September 1942 the AA Divisions and Corps were dissolved and a new 7th AA Group assumed responsibility for North-East England, including 30th Anti-Aircraft Brigade.
When the TA was reformed in 1947, 30th Anti-Aircraft Brigade was renumbered as 56th (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Brigade, with its HQ at Washington, Co Durham, and the following order of battle:
- 325 (Sunderland) LAA Regt at Sunderland – formerly 125 (Northumbrian) Anti-Tank Regt
- 463 (Durham) HAA Regt at Sunderland – formerly 63 (Northumbrian) HAA Regt (above)'
- 485 (Tees) HAA Regt at Middlesbrough – formerly 85 (Tees) HAA Regt
- 589 Searchlight Regt (Durham Light Infantry) at Stockton-on-Tees – formerly 54 S/L Regt (The Durham Light Infantry)
- 590 LAA/SL Regt at Stockton – formerly 113th (Durham Light Infantry) LAA Regt
- 654 LAA Regt at Bishop Auckland – newly raised
654 LAA Regt was placed in suspended animation in May 1949, and 325 LAA Regt merged into another unit in January 1954. Then on 1 March 1954, 56th (Northumbrian) Anti-Aircraft Brigade HQ was disbanded at Seaburne, Sunderland. The following year AA Command was disbanded and the air defence of the UK was reorganised. A new 30th Anti-Aircraft Brigade was formed as a TA HQ from the Regular Army's 1st Anti-Aircraft Brigade, based at Edenbridge, Kent. It had no connection with Northumbria and was disbanded in 1961.
- 2nd AA Division at British Military History
- Litchfield pp 54–7.
- 7 AA Division 1940 at British Military History
- AA Command 3 September 1939 at Patriot Files
- Monthly Army List May 1939
- 7 AA Div at RA 39–45
- 10 AA Division 1940 at British Military History
- 37 LAA at RA 39–45
- Joslen, pp. 484–7.
- 63 HAA Regt at RA 39–45
- Joslen, p. 520.
- 38 LAA at RA 39–45
- Joslen, p. 484–5.
- 64 HAA Rgt at RA 39–45
- Joslen, p. 465.
- AA Bdes 67–106 at British Army units 1945 on.
- Territorial Army 1947 at Orbat.com
- 444–473 Regts at British Army units 1945 on.
- 474–519 Regts at British Army units 1945 on.
- 564–591 Regts at British Army units 1945 on.
- Lt-Col H.F. Joslen, Orders of Battle, United Kingdom and Colonial Formations and Units in the Second World War, 1939–1945, London: HM Stationery Office, 1960/Uckfield: Naval & Military Press, 2003, ISBN 1843424746.
- Norman E.H. Litchfield, The Territorial Artillery 1908–1988 (Their Lineage, Uniforms and Badges), Nottingham: Sherwood Press, 1992, ISBN 0-9508205-2-0.