37th Brigade (United Kingdom)
37th Infantry Brigade
37th Independent Infantry Brigade
Formation sign of the 12th Division, World War I.
|Engagements||World War I
World War II
First World War
The 37th Brigade was one of the New Army or Kitchener's Army brigades, and was assigned to the 12th (Eastern) Division and served on the Western Front during the First World War. The brigade was raised in August 1914 from the thousands of men volunteering for Kitchener's New Armies.
Order of battle
The 37th Brigade was constituted as follows during the war:
- 6th (Service) Battalion, Queen's (Royal West Surrey Regiment)
- 6th (Service) Battalion, Buffs (East Kent Regiment)
- 7th (Service) Battalion, East Surrey Regiment (disbanded February 1918)
- 6th (Service) Battalion, Queen's Own (Royal West Kent Regiment)
- 37th Machine Gun Company, Machine Gun Corps (formed 4 February 1916, moved to 12th Battalion, Machine Gun Corps on 1 March 1918)
- 37th Trench Mortar Battery (formed 15 June 1916)
Second World War
The 37th Infantry Brigade was reformed on 7 October 1939 as a 2nd Line Territorial Army infantry brigade as a duplicate of 133rd Infantry Brigade. The 37th Infantry Brigade was with the 12th (Eastern) Infantry Division when they were sent in 1940 to France to join the British Expeditionary Force. The division suffered very heavy casualties during the Battle of France and was disbanded in July 1940 after having been evacuated to England from Dunkirk. In November 1941 the brigade joined the 3rd Infantry Division and was redesignated the 7th Infantry Brigade.
Order of battle
37th Brigade was constituted as follows during the war:
- 5th Battalion, Buffs (Royal East Kent Regiment) (to 26 October 1939)
- 6th Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment
- 7th (Cinque Ports) Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment
- 2/6th Battalion, East Surrey Regiment (from 26 October 1939)
- 37th Independent Infantry Brigade Anti-Tank Company (formed 12 September 1940, disbanded 7 July 1941)
- 2nd Battalion, South Wales Borderers (from 8 December 1941)
The following officers commanded 37th Brigade during the war:
- Brigadier R.J.P. Wyatt (until 20 May 1940)
- Lieutenant Colonel E.K.B. Warnop (Acting, from 27 May until 11 June 1940)
- Brigadier R.J.P. Wyatt (from 11 June 1940 until 14 February 1942)
- Brigadier W.H. Oxley (from 14 February until 1 June 1942)
- Brigadier B.B. Rackham (from 1 June until 10 August 1944)
- Colonel D.M.W. Beak (Acting, from 10 August until 10 September 1944)
- Brigadier D.H. Haugh (from 10 September 1944)
Recipients of the Victoria Cross
- Sergeant Harry Cator, 7th (Service) Battalion, East Surrey Regiment, Great War
- Lance Corporal William Richard Cotter, 6th (Service) Battalion, Buffs (East Kent Regiment), Great War
- Sergeant Thomas James Harris, 6th (Service) Battalion, (Queen's Own) Royal West Kent Regiment, Great War
- Baker, Chris. "The 12th (Eastern) Division in 1914-1918". The Long, Long Trail. Retrieved 31 August 2014.
- Chappell, PB. "12th (Eastern) Division". The Regimental Warpath 1914 - 1918. Retrieved 31 August 2014.
- Joslen, Lt-Col H.F. (1990) [1st. Pub. HMSO:1960]. Orders of Battle, Second World War, 1939–1945. London: London Stamp Exchange. ISBN 0-948130-03-2.
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