Royal School of Artillery
|Royal School of Artillery|
Badge of the Royal Artillery
|Active||1915 – Present|
|Part of||Army Recruiting and Training Division|
The Royal School of Artillery (RSA), formerly the School of Instruction for Royal Horse and Field Artillery (Larkhill), is the principal training establishment for artillery warfare in the British Army. Established in 1915, it is located at Larkhill, Wiltshire, on the south edge of Salisbury Plain in the United Kingdom. The School is the primary training facility for Royal Artillery recruits, and is also home to the Gunnery Training Team.
The Royal School of Artillery was established in 1915 as the School of Instruction for Royal Horse and Field Artillery (Larkhill), on land previously used for tented accommodation at Larkhill. The 1,200-bed Fargo hospital, which was built to the West of the School, opened around the same time to tend for wounded soldiers returning from the First World War; it closed after the War and is now the main ammunition compound for the School.
The Regiment's first School of Artillery had been established at Shoeburyness, Essex, in 1859. (In earlier times artillery teaching and practice had taken place near the Regiment's Royal Military Academy on Woolwich Common.) After the First World War, the Field Artillery and Horse Artillery elements from Shoeburyness were transferred to Larkhill; Shoeburyness, though, retained the Coast Artillery School of the Royal Garrison Artillery until 1940 (which moved to Llandudno for the duration of the war, and then to Plymouth).
The Officers' Mess and Quarters was built in 1936-41 and is a Grade II listed building. Much of the rest of the camp was rebuilt in the 1960s; the School was redesignated the Royal School of Artillery in 1970.
The School provides Phase 2 training for recruits to the Royal Artillery: this training includes gunnery, air defence, surveillance and signals. Trained officers and gunners are then posted to units worldwide, but return to the School for frequent refresher courses. The School is also the home of the Gunnery Training Team, which provides a training consultancy service to the Royal Artillery and the wider Army.
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- James, N D G, 1983, Gunners at Larkhill – a history of the Royal School of Artillery, Griesham Books, Salisbury, ISBN 0-946095-08-6
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