Танковый фронт

2-я бронетанковая дивизия

2nd Armoured Division

I. Командный состав дивизии
II. Формирование и организация

Была сформирована 15 декабря 1939 г.


Дивизия была послана в Киренаику в начале 1941 г. для охраны растянутой линии коммуникаций. 1-я бронетанковая бригада дивизии, была включена в состав британских частей в Греции.

Во время весеннего наступления 1941 г. Роммеля была уничтожена и расформирована 10 мая 1941 г.

This division had a short and unlucky history; formed in December 1939, it wasn't until the following month that it received any troops to command - when the 1st Light Armoured Brigade and the 22nd Heavy Armoured Brigade were assigned.[1] Similarly, the 2nd Support Group was formed in February, but no troops were assigned until March.[4] As the 1st Armoured Division had priority for equipment, the 2nd was forced to use whatever was available. The 1st Armoured Brigade, with its 150-odd Mk VI light tanks, was the most combat-ready element of the division during most of 1940. The 22nd Armoured Brigade was forced to make do with trucks and a few light tanks.[5]

As the threat of invasion receded after the Battle of Britain, the division was reorganized and reinforced for service in the Middle East. It exchanged the 22nd Armoured Brigade for the 1st Armoured Division's veteran 3rd Armoured Brigade and then the brigades exchanged regiments to ensure that each had both cruisers and light tanks.[6]

The following table lists tank strengths before departure in October 1940:

Number Tank Type Units
169 Mk VI 52 each in KDG, 3rd Hussars, 4th Hussars, 4 with 1st RHA
6 A 9 CS 2nd Royal Tank Regiment
12 A 10 CS 6 each in 3rd and 5th RTR
74 A 10 Two squadrons in 2nd RTR, one squadron each in 3rd and 5th RTR
83 A 13 One squadron in 2nd RTR, two squadrons each in 3rd and 5th RTR
In addition, both brigade headquarters (as well as the division headquarters) had three Mk VI light tanks and seven cruiser tanks (mainly A 10s).[5] In October 1940, the division set sail for the Middle East, arriving in the new year.[7] Two months later, the 'Hussars' converted to a three-battery anti-tank regiment, with one LAA battery re-equipping with 2pdrs and the other, 'A' Battery, transferring to the 25th LAA Regiment.[8] Following the conversion, the regiment was unofficially considered to be a Royal Horse Artillery unit.[9]

In early 1941, the division was sent to the Western Desert to reinforce troops under General Archibald Wavell, who, at the time, was on the verge of defeating the Italian forces.

Unaware that Germany had sent reinforcements to support the Italians in Cyrenaica, Wavell's superiors ordered him to send half his troops to Greece, including the 1st Armoured Brigade and elements from the 2nd Support Group. In April 1941, the 102nd Anti-Tank Regt RA (Northumberland Hussars), and other elements from the 2nd Support Group, joined the 1st Armoured Brigade for Operation Lustre (the move to Greece). At this time, the regiment had a strength of 578 men, 168 vehicles and 48 x 2pdrs.[10]

After their arrival, 102 Anti-Tank Regiment was deployed to hold the Metamorphos Pass in conjunction with the Greek Horse Artillery. On 22 April, they were subjected to dive bombing and tank attacks. Together with their New Zealand allies, the 'Hussars' acted as a rearguard. After a 12-hour battle and a 160-mile march through the night, they reached Athens on 25 April. The next day, they headed off to the nearby Rafina Beach and waited to be evacuated, having by now, destroyed their guns and equipment. Most of the unit were taken aboard HMS Havoc[citation needed] on 27 April and landed at Suda on the island of Crete. However, some elements were evacuated to Alexandria.
General Erwin Rommel's offensive forced Wavell's troops to retreat. On 8 April 1941, the understrength 2nd Armoured Division was caught in a pincer movement by the Italian 10th Bersaglieri Regiment, the 5th Light Division and the 15th Panzer Division - some elements escaped capture and were evacuated from Tobruk. On 10 May 1941, the division was officially disbanded and not reformed. The 2nd Armoured Division also had an RAMC Brigade, but World War II records identifying the unit number are currently unavailable.

Дивизия входила в состав следующих объединений:

Период подчинения Объединение
15.12.1939 - 19.06.1940 Северный военный округ [HQ Northern Command]
19.06.1940 - 04.08.1940 IV Corps
04.08.1940 - 31.12.1940 War Office
01.01.1941 - 20.03.1941 Главное командование на Среднем Востоке [GHQ Middle East]
20.03.1941 - 08.04.1941 HQ Cyrenaica Command
08.04.1941 - 17.04.1941 7 Armoured Division After the surrender of much of 2 Armoured Division at Mechili, the remains of the Division came under command temporarily.
17.04.1941 - 09.05.1941 Главное командование на Среднем Востоке [GHQ Middle East]


III. Боевой и численный состав дивизии

Дивизионные части (Divisional Troops):

Даты вхождения в состав  
  Бригады [Brigades]
19.01.1940 - 13.04.1940 1-я легкая бронетанковая бригада [1st Light Armoured Brigade]
15.01.1940 - 13.04.1940 22-я тяжелая бронетанковая бригада [22nd Heavy Armoured Brigade]
14.04.1940 - 27.02.1941 1-я бронетанковая бригада [1st Armoured Brigade]
14.04.1940 - 12.10.1940 22-я бронетанковая бригада [22nd Armoured Brigade]
05.10.1940 - 31.01.1941 3-я бронетанковая бригада [3rd Armoured Brigade]
21.03.1941 - 08.04.1941 3-я бронетанковая бригада [3rd Armoured Brigade]
  Группа обеспечения [Special Group]
05.02.1940 - 08.04.1941 2-я группа обеспечения [2nd Special Group]
  Разведка [Recce]
24.02.1941 - 09.05.1941 1-й Короля драгунский гвардейский полк [King's Dragoon Guards]
  Артиллерия [Royal Artillery]
  Саперы [Royal Engineers]
10.06.1940 - 26.02.1941 3-й саперный эскадрон [3rd Royal Engineer Field Squadron]
10.06.1940 - 07.02.1941 142-й инженерно-парковый взвод [142nd Field Park Troop]
07.02.1941 - 26.02.1941 142-й инженерно-парковый эскадрон [142nd Field Park Squadron]
  Связь [Royal Corps of Signals]
04.03.1940 - 08.04.1941 [2nd Armoured Division Signals]

Типы организации дивизии:

Состав на 8 апреля 1941 г.:

  • 3-я бронетанковая бригада [3rd Armoured Brigade]
  • 3-я (инд.) моторизованная бригада [3rd Indian Motor Brigade]
    • [2nd Lancers (Gardner's Horse)]
    • [11th Prince Albert Victor's Own Cavalry (Frontier Force)]
    • [18th King Edward's Own Cavalry]
  • 2nd Support Group
    • 1st The Tower Hamlets Rifles, The Rifle Brigade
    • 104th Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery - (Until 4 April 1941 )
    • 102nd (Northumberland Hussars) Regiment , Royal Horse Artillery (1941)


IV. Боевой путь дивизии


V. Личные награды


Награда количество награжденных


Рейтинг@Mail.ru Яндекс.Метрика
Литература и источники:
George Forty. British Army Handbook 1939 - 1945. Sutton Publishing, 1998.