14th Regiment Royal Artillery
|14th Regiment, Royal Artillery|
|Active||1900 – Present|
|Part of||Royal Regiment of Artillery|
|Equipment||MLRS, AS 90, Light Gun, MAMBA, ASP, HVM Stormer|
14 Regiment Royal Artillery was formed in Woolwich in March 1900, with roots traced through the history of 28th Field Brigade, which saw action in virtually every major battle on the Western Front during the four years of World War I, and during World War II as part of the East Africa campaign. Of note, the regiment was heavily involved with 25 pounder guns in the successful Battle of Keren in Spring 1941.
Renamed '14th Field Regiment Royal Artillery' in 1947, it has also served in India, Hong Kong, Korea, Aden and later in Northern Ireland. Following disbandment in 1971, 14th Field Regiment Royal Artillery was reformed at Larkhill in December 1984 as the Training Support Regiment for the Royal School of Artillery. Initially it was composed of 1st Battery RA "The Blazers", 132 (The Bengal Rocket Troop) Battery and 176 (Abu Klea) Battery.
The batteries are as follows:
- 1st Battery RA, "The Blazers" (Training Support)
- 24 (Irish) Battery RA (Phase 2 soldiers - Trade Training)
- 34 (Seringapatam) Battery RA (Training Support - 'Strike & Integrate')
1st Battery RA "The Blazers"
The role of 1st Battery RA is to provide support training delivered mainly to The Royal Artillery in the form of equipment and manpower. The battery is the most diverse in the Gunners with different weapons systems and Surveillance & Target Acquisition (STA) equipment that the Royal Artillery has in service today. The manpower within the battery is drawn from across the Royal Artillery and soldiers serve what is normally a two-year assignment within the battery.
The battery is controlled from a battery headquarters (responsible for the administration of Weapons Troop). There are three sections within Weapons Troop: Precision Fires, Air Defence and Ground Based ISTAR (GBI).
Although the battery strength is similar to most troops, it has far more equipment than most batteries. Primary equipment strengths as of November 2015 include:
- 5 x MLRS
- 5 x HVM SP Stormer
- 6 x HVM LML
- 2 x AFV 432 Bty Comd Post
- 2 x Remover
- 2 x Revivor
- 2 x Lightweight Counter Mortar Radar
- 1 x Sound Ranging (ASP) Section
24 (Irish) Battery RA
The Phase 2 training establishment for the Royal Artillery. It is the battery's role to supply the Field Army with professionally trained individuals through its Trade Training in the following areas:
- Gunnery (Strike - Surface to Surface)
- Air Defence (Strike - Surface to Air)
- Communications/Signals (Gunner Command Systems)
- Driving (Car and Light Goods Vehicles)
The battery is currently formed with the command element made up of the Battery Commander, the Battery Captain and the Battery Sergeant Major. Under the battery HQ element there are two main areas. Firstly the 'Trade Troop', managed by a captain, troop commander, responsible for all Trade training, including driver training, for Phase 2 soldiers. Secondly there is the 'Intake Troop', also run by a captain troop commander who manages all other aspects of Phase 2 training at The Royal School of Artillery.
34 (Seringapatam) Battery RA
At present the battery operates as the lone firing battery within 14 Regiment. It has 160 members drawn from every Regiment within the Royal Regiment of Artillery. This includes Close Support, General Support, STA, Air Defence, Parachute and Commando units which gives the sub-unit a unique perspective and is the largest Battery in the Royal Artillery.
The battery has an extensive diary of varied firing commitments supporting not only the Royal Artillery, but also The Infantry Training Centre (ITC) at Warminster, the School of Army Aviation at Middle Wallop, The Royal Military Academy (RMAS) at Sandhurst, Berkshire, The Royal Military College of Science (RMCS) at Shrivenham and many others. The battery also supports RSA courses such as Young Officers (YOs), Gunnery Careers Course (GCC), Artillery Command Systems (ACS), Strike and Targeting. High-profile visits are commonplace, and the battery is unique in firing a bombard demonstration, whereby visitors are sealed in a hardened bunker and then shelled in a striking demonstration of the effects of artillery fire.