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Author Topic: Kent Home Guard Battalions  (Read 16731 times)

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Re: Kent Home Guard Battalions
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2010, 20:55:03 »
Much of what i have posted on the Kent Home Guard has come from-
Kent Home Guard a history by K R Gulvin.
North Kent books/Mereborough books, 1980 isbn 09505733 3 7.
Hardback, 220mm x 150mm, 92 pages 50+ black/white photos.
As the author notes, "A brief guide to the formation, equipment, weapons and history of the Home Guard Battalions of Kent." Its a bit more than a brief guide. Unfortunately the current secondhand price is 20-30, which is rather expensive. A reprint is definitely needed.


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Re: Kent Home Guard Battalions
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2010, 19:03:14 »
I have added more info and some links to my first post in this topic.
A general site on the Home Guard.


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Kent Home Guard Battalions
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2010, 20:54:38 »
Kent Home Guard battalions, as of 1944.

Btn #                                 CO
1.   Ashford               Capt. L. E. Swann
           The men of this unit came mainly from the Southern Railway engineering works and the surrounding
           agricultural areas. The Battalion defended the Romney Marsh and Folkestone area.
           See Ashford Home Guard on this board.
2.   Charing               Lt. Col C.G. Darley, DSO
           The central point of defence for this Battalion was Charing Hill, where trenches and dugouts were
3.   Canterbury          Major A.C. Cussans, MC
           Jointly defended Canterbury along with the Royal East Kent Regiment.
4.   St. Augustine's    Major A.J. Gracie
           Rural Battalion formed from men from villages outside Canterbury, defended the North Kent coast in the
           area of Whitstable and Herne Bay.
           A photo of Blean Home Guard @
           see Whitstable Home Guard on this board.
5.   Wingham             Capt. F.D.C. Newport
           Formed mainly of miners and agricultural workers, defended the area from Sandwich to Dover.
6.   Thanet                 Major C.S.F. Witts
           Composed of 5 companies based in Birchington, Broadstairs, Margate, Minster and Ramsgate.
           See Ramsgate Home Guard on this board.
           Also 6th Thanet Home Guard on this board.
7.   Lyminge               Lt Col S. Mildred, DSO, MC
           Patrol area, the countryside North of Folkestone into Romney marsh and Lyminge forest.
8.   Cinque Ports        Lt. Col. Kennary-Crawford-Stuart, CVO,CMG,DSO
                                  Lt Col W.H. Gibbon
                                  Lt Col Brent
           Made up of companys from Deal, Dover and Folkestone. Many members were lost as a result of enemy
           action, including its first CO, Lt Col Kennedy-Crawford-Stuart.
           Deal and Walmer, D Company commanded by Major C. Barker. HQ at 87 Blenheim road Deal.
           The memoirs of a member of this Bn, Eric Hart, can be seen @
           The records of E (Deal) Company, 8th Bn, are at the East Kent archives centre. (1941-43(ek/u176)
9.   Faversham           Major H.S. Hatfield
           10 companies of around 2,000 men, along with the 10th Sittingbourne Battalion defended the London to
            Dover road.
10. Sittingbourne       Lt. Col. C.H.F. Metcalfe, DSO
11. Maidstone            Capt. W.A.N. Baker
12. Chatham              Lt. Col. H. Evans
            See Chatham Home Guard on this board.
            Also Chatham Home Guard band.
13. Rochester            Capt. H.S. Picking
            See Chatham Home Guard on this board.
            Also Home Guard hidden defence, Rochester.
            An account of a very young member of C Company,@
14. Hoo                      Lt.Col.M.D. Gill
            Along with the 15th Cobham Battalion, defended the area south and east of Gravesend, including the Isle of Grain.
15. Cobham               Lt. Col. F.C. Stigant
         There is a photo of 9 platoon, c company, 15th (cobham) Bn, with names @
16. Gravesend           H.J. Bretton,Esq
          Along with the 17th Northfleet and 18th Dartford Battalions defended the river Thames and the A2.
17. Northfleet             F. Anwell,Esq
18. Dartford               Capt. E. Harrison
          The CO awarded the MBE for his outstanding work with the Battalion.
          More info @
19. Farningham          Major D. Mosely
20. Sevenoaks           Lt.Col. Shaw, MC
21. Tonbridge            Col. H.H. Bateson,CMG
          The Tonbridge, 22th Tunbridge Wells and 24th Malling Battalions defended the Ironside line, a line of pillboxes and tank traps running across Kent and
22. Tunbridge Wells   Brig. Gen. H.O. Knox,CMG,MC,CIE,CBE
23. Goudhurst            Admiriral Sir Reginald Tyrwhitt-Drake,Bart,GCB,DSO
24. Malling                 Capt.R.H.V. Cavendish,MVO

The following 4 battalions are utility battalions raised by major industries in Kent, with men stationed in companies all around the county.
25. G.P.O.                          G. Casemore, Esq
          Originally 4 companies based in Canterbury, Maidstone,Tunbridge Wells/Hastings and Kent/West Sussex.
          Later 6 companies.
26. Kent Bus                      Lt. Col.H.O. Hollas
          Formed in June 1940 to defend bus company depots. In 1943 was formed into 3 Home Guard transport
          columns. West Kent, East Kent and North Kent.
27. Kent Electric                 H. Spofforth, Esq
          Formed by staff of the Kent Electric Power Company to defend company  premises. HQ in Rochester.
28. 1st Southern Railway   F.H.Issac, Esq
          "Formed to provide a trained body of its own men to give military protection at all points of importance on
            the railway network." 10 companys and a light A-A troop.

29. Mid-Kent                      Lt.Col.H.B. Forbes
           Patrol area Maidstone down to the Weald of Kent.
30. Sheppey                      Lt. Col. R. Hemingway
           Once almost shot the Mayors wife!
           A coastal artillery battery was formed in 1942, 334 Coast Battery RA, part of 516 Coast regiment. (Affillated to the Royal Artillery)
           A photo of D Company, 30 bn, @
 A different order of names is given in other places i have seen this photo.
           The person 3rd from left in the back row is definitely CSM Fryer. MM, my grandfather.
31. Dockyard (Chatham)    Lt.Col.H.B. Forbes
           see Chatham Home Guard on this board.
32. Edenbridge                  Lt. Col.C.E. Thompson.DSO,MC
           Formed in Nov 1942 when Edenbridge became a NODAL defence point. (military stronghold.)
33. Short Brothers             Lt. Col.J.M. Prower,DSO
           See Short Brothers Home Guard on this board.

The following 7 battalions were part of the London zone, but were also included as part of the Kent Home Guard.
51. Bromley                        Lt Col. H.W. O'brion,MC,TD
52. Farnborough                Lt. Col. H. L. Lewis
53. Orpington                     Lt. Col.A.J. Shepherd
54. Chisslehurst                 Lt. Col.C.R.D. Chiesmon
           See Chislehurst Home Guard on this board.
55. Beckenham                  Lt.Col. A.F. Hopper,OBE,TD
56. Erith                             Lt.Col. F.W. Briggs
57. Sidcup                          Lt. Col. Kirtland

#5 Home Guard AA Regt (z battery)
3 inch rockett projector batterys.
101. anti-aircraft z battery, formed Gillingham, July '42.
102.                " "                 formed Lodge Hill nr  Rochester, Jan '43.
       see #5 Home Guard AA Regt on this board.

1-10, 23,30 Bns, were affiliated to the Buffs, Royal East Kent Regiment.
11-22,24,26-29,31-33,51-57, Bns were affiliated to the Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment.


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