31st Indian Armoured Division
|31st Indian Armoured Division|
|Active||1940 - 1945, postwar|
|Branch||British Indian Army
M4 Sherman tank
|Engagements||Second World War|
|Major General Thomas Corbett
Major General Robert Wordsworth
The 31st Indian Armoured Division was an armoured formation of the Indian Army during World War II, formed in 1940, as 1st Indian Armoured Division; it consisted of units of the British Army and the British Indian Army. When it was raised it consisted of two Armoured Brigades (1st and 2nd Indian Armoured Brigades) and one Motor Brigade (3rd Indian Motor Brigade).
At the end of 1941, by which time 1st Indian Support Group had joined the division, it was renamed 31st Indian Armoured Division and its brigades redesignated as the 251st and 252nd Indian Armoured Brigades and 31st Indian Support Group (the Motor Brigade's name remained unchanged).
In mid-1942, by which time the support group had been disbanded, the 251st brigade was detached and the rest of the division was shipped to join the British Tenth Army and served in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. The division never saw combat although the 3rd Indian Motor Brigade was detached to Egypt and saw heavy action in the Western Desert Campaign during 1941 & 1942 and again in 1944 and 1945 when, reformed as the 43rd Indian Infantry Brigade (Lorried) it was sent to the Italian Campaign as an independent brigade. The closest the rest of the division came to combat was in April 1944 when it was rushed to Egypt to crush a mutiny among the Greek 1st Infantry Brigade.
Commander: Major General Robert Wordsworth
Commander Royal Artillery: Brigadier C.P.B. Wilson
- Brigade Commander G.Carr-White
- Brigade Commander A.A.E. Filose
- 13th Duke of Connaught's Own Lancers
- 15th Field Artillery, Royal Artillery
- 144th Field Artillery, R.A.
- 79th Antitank Regiment, R.A.
- 32nd Field Squadron, QVO Madras Sappers & Miners, Indian Engineers
- 39th Field Park Squadron, QVO Madras Sappers & Miners, I.E.
- 31st Indian Armoured Divisional Signals