61st Infantry Division (United Kingdom)

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For the equivalent formation in the First World War, see 61st (2nd South Midland) Division.
61st Infantry Division[1]
61 inf div -vector.svg
Formation badge for the 61st Infantry Division
Active 1939-1945
Country  United Kingdom
Branch  British Army
Type Infantry division
Officer Commanding Major-General C. B. Wainwright

The 61st Infantry Division[1][2] was an infantry division of the British Army raised shortly before the Second World War and was part of the Territorial Army. The division was formed in 1939 as a 2nd Line duplicate of the 48th (South Midland) Division and recruited mainly from the South Midlands area of England. The division remained mainly in the United Kingdom for the war.


The 61st Infantry Division[1] was in the Territorial Army and was formed as a 2nd Line duplicate formation of the 1st Line 48th (South Midland) Division and, like its parent 48th Division, recruited from areas of the South Midlands of England. The division was formed in 1939 when the Territorial Army was ordered to be doubled in size as war with Nazi Germany was becoming increasingly likely. War was declared on 3 September 1939 and the division was mobilised. On 15 April 1940 part of the division (the 146th Infantry Brigade and 61st Division HQ) was converted into Maurice Force, a formation created for operations in the Norwegian Campaign. After the British Expeditionary Force was evacuated from France, the 61st Division was sent to Northern Ireland with the 53rd (Welsh) Division to guard against a German invasion there. The division moved there on 20 June 1940 and returned to the mainland on 2 February 1943. The division did not see active service outside the United Kingdom but, after the war in Europe ended, the division was reorganised as a light division and was to be sent to the South-East Asian theatre to fight in the final stages of the Burma Campaign against the Imperial Japanese Army. However, the Japanese surrendered on 15 August 1945 and there was no need for the division to be sent to the Far East. The division was disbanded in September 1945 and was not reformed in the Territorial Army in 1947.


Component Units[edit]

182nd Infantry Brigade

183rd Infantry Brigade

184th Infantry Brigade

Divisional Troops

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Joslen, p. 95
  2. ^ Chappell, p. 37


  • Chappell, Mike (1987). British battle insignia (2): 1939-1940. Men-At-Arms. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 0-85045-739-4. 
  • Joslen, Lieutenant-Colonel H.F (1960) [1960]. Orders Of Battle Second World War 1939-1945. Naval & Military Press Ltd. ISBN 978-1-84342-474-1. 

External links[edit]