Royal Artillery NCOs in India in the 1920s Postcard

For the fourth Sunday in a row we are back to India for tonight’s postcard, this time however it is a nice group shot of the sergeants and NCOs of a Royal Artillery unit:SKM_C284e18100911340Judging by the style of the uniforms I would date this postcard to the early 1920s. The khaki drill service dress they are wearing has a standing mandarin style collar, with the brass collar dogs of the Royal Artillery:SKM_C284e18100911340 - CopyThese are paired with a white lanyard, one of the distinguishing features of an artilleryman:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (2)Each man is also wearing a brown leather Sam Browne belt:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (3)Interestingly the man on the extreme right has very well cut trousers which look like riding breaches:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (4)Most of the men have chests full of medals, indicating service in the Great War:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (5)Many of the soldiers depicted here are sergeants, with their rank prominently displayed on their sleeves with removable insignia:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (6)The two men in the centre are different however. This gentlemen appears to be a warrant officer as you can make out the faint sign of a crown on his lower sleeve:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (7)Whilst this man is clearly the officer as he has an open collar and shirt and tie on:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (8)In front of the group are a wide selection of small trophies, presumably won by the regiment in various competitions with other local battalions and units:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (9)Behind can be seen a typical Indian barrack block, with a broad veranda to try and keep the building cool in the heat of the midday sun:SKM_C284e18100911340 - Copy (10)The Royal Artillery was spread across the whole of the Indian Sub-Continent with batteries and detachments located in many of the different army bases of India. This list dates from before the Great War, at the census of 1911, but gives some idea of the spread of RA units and is probably indicative of the situation in the 1920s as well:

  • India, Ambala, N Battery Royal Horse Artillery.
  • India, Lucknow, U Battery Royal Horse Artillery.
  • India, Lucknow, C Ammunition Column Royal Horse Artillery.
  • Punjab, India, Jullundur, 16th Brigade RFA Staff.
  • India Hyderabad 18th Field Artillery Brigade Staff.
  • India, Hyderabad, No 4 Ammunition Column Royal Field Artillery.
  • Unknown, Unknown, 12th Battery, Royal Field Artillery. This entry appeared with others relating to India.
  • India, Cawnpore, 19th Battery Royal Field Artillery.
  • India, Lucknow, 20th Battery Royal Field Artillery.
  • India, Hyderabad, 59th Battery RFA
  • India, Belgaum, 84th Battery Royal Field Artillery.
  • Punjab, India, Jullundur, 89th Battery Royal Field Artillery.
  • Punjab, India, Multan, 90th Battery RFA.
  • Baluchistan, India, Quetta, Royal Garrison Artillery Staff.
  • India, Jutogh, No 5 Mountain Battery RGA.
  • Baluchistan, India, Quetta, No 7 Mountain Battery RGA.
  • India, Quetta, No 8 Mountain Battery, RGA.
  • India, Quetta, 51 Company RGA.
  • Punjab, India, Multan, 90th Heavy Battery Royal Garrison Artillery.
  • Baluchistan, India, Quetta, No 101 Company RGA.

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