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British Units involved in the Kenyan Emergency

This is a list of the British forces that served in the Kenyan Emergency. As usual, information is hard to come by. It is NOT our intention to ignore any unit which served.  We wish to get the facts correct and produce a accurate list of all the units who served.

Due to time pressures and a lack of staff, we can no longer update these pages. This may change in the future, please bear with us.

Royal Air Force
Army
Royal Navy
Local Forces

RAF

No.8 Squadron Vampire FB9
No.13 Squadron Meteor PR10
No.49 Squadron Lincoln B2 Eastleigh Airport; November 1953 to January 1954 & November 1954 to July 1955
No.61 Squadron Lincoln B2 Eastleigh Airport; March 1954 to June 1954
No.66 Squadron
No.100 Squadron Lincoln B2 Eastleigh Airport; january 1954 to March 1954
No.208 Squadron Venoms/Hunters, Stationed at Eastleigh 1959to1962,various detachments to Bahrein also Kuwait finished o/seas posting Aden 1962.CO Sqdn Ldr Ramiraz.
No.214 Squadron Lincoln B2 Eastleigh Airport; June 1954 to December 1954
no.507 Squadron Eastleigh Kenya 1960/61 telecommunications Royal Air force also in Arusha 20 miles from Nairobi under canvas.I used to ride shot gun protecting forces children going to school from the camp. National Service. Thanks to Arthur Croker for this entry.
1340 Flight, RAF
Originally this flight was stationed at Mweiga before moving out to Nanyuki Airstrip Equipped with Harvards modified to carry 4 x 19lb bombs and with one wing-mounted .303 machine gun. The flight had 8 - 10 of these aircraft which had been used for second-stage flying training in Rhodesia, and initially the pilots were made up from the flying instructors. The flight operated in a local variation of 'close/tactical support' carrying out recces and ground attack missions against Mau Mau gangs in the 'Prohibited areas', mainly the Aberdare and Mount Kenya forests. Such attacks were usually made on information from ground forces or the Kenya Police Air Wing, a section of which also operated out of Nanyuki. The crew lived under canvas and had a hard living allowance of one shilling and also a daily tot of rum. Commanding officer was originally Flight Lieutenant Pullman, who was killed when his Harvard crashed on Thompsons Plain, also killed was a KPR pilot flying with him. Sqn. Ldr Pullman was buried in Nyeri cemetery with full military honours, Ted Skinner was a pallbearer. Sqn Ldr CG StD Jeffries, DFC took over the squadron after this. Information supplied by Alec MacDonald Gaunt and Ted Skinner.
East African Comm. FlightE.A.Comm Flt operated with one Valettab (VX 214) two Ansons (later replaced by two Pembrokes) and two Auster aircrafe. CO was Fly Lt. Angus McVitie. One Helicopter was added to the unit for 'trials' and Army Co-op.Auster were used for Psyops (Airial Broadcasts) and leaflet drops. Thanks to J.M.(Ian) Crossan, Ex RAF for this entry.

RAF Regiment

58 Squadron I think my detachment of the Sqdn.in 1954 may have been the last one. We were at Nanyuki only a few weeks when the Harvard aircraft were disbanded but instead of returning to Aden we were attached to a Kenya Regt.unit at a small place named Kairo on the edge of the Aberdares. With Kenya Regt. Black trackers we did 2 or 3 day patrols searching for Mau Mau gangs in the Aberdares. After about six weeks we moved to Thika were we assisted KPR at a Mau Mau prison camp,searching and guarding the prisoners. About six weeks later we returned to Aden
66 Squadron Both 66 and 58 Squadrons did detachments from their home base in Aden serving at Mweiga and Nanyuki. It was whilst 66 were at Nanyuki that they along with a Scottish regiment rescued three pilots who crashed their Harvards in the Aberdares. They were also employed on farm guards when some of the farm owners were flying with the Kenya Police Reserve in their Pacers acting as spotters. This besides guarding the Harvards of 1340 Flight whilst they were on the ground. Information supplied by  Tom Renshaw ex Cpl. 66 Sqdn.
MT Section, RAF Eastleigh. Nairobi. Kenya. CO. Group Captain Ayres. Officer IC MT Section Flight LT.Furguson.
Telecommunications, RAF Eastleigh, Kenya.

Army

HQ, East Africa Command
   A troop from 9 Signal Squadron squadron was based in Cyprus, from Jan/Feb 1962 . Composed of both Regular and National Service. Length of tour approximately 9 months before handing over to civilians posted in from GCHQ. Based within the HQ of East Africa Command in Nairobi. Role was concerned with events taking place in the Congo.

24th Flying Brigade, Kahawa, Nairobi. 24th Flying Brigade, Kahawa Camp, Thika Road. 2nd in command was Captain Seymour. Was a compact Brigade that could move quickly by Air and did so in 1959 by flying the Brigade from Eastliegh to Aden for the Southern Arabian Campaign. Thanks to Colin E Tongs for this entry.

1st battalion Duke of Wellingtons Regiment, 24 brigade. Flown out in July 1960 at the request of Kenya president concerning trouble in congo we were the army crack trouble shooting team at the time and spent a few months at Nakuru under canvas most of us were national servicemen. Thanks to Raymond Joy for this entry.
There is a minor discrepancy in the statement above, about being requested by the ‘Kenya president’. There was no President of Kenya at the time, due to Kenya being a British colony. The first Kenyan president was Jomo Kenyatta ( 12th December 1964 -22nd August 1974). The phrase ‘army crack troubleshooting team’ was actually penned by a Yorkshire Post journalist probably as 80% of the regiment came from the West Riding of Yorkshire. Other papers called them the ‘Flying 650’ and a ’crack regiment of the Strategic Reserve’.
The British Colonial Heads of Kenya during from WW2 until Independence were:-
11 Dec 1944 - 30 Sep 1952 Sir Philip Euen Mitchell
30 Sep 1952 - 23 Oct 1959 Sir Evelyn Baring, (1st Baron Howick of Glendale)
23 Oct 1959 - 04 Jan 1962 Sir Patrick Muir Renison
04 Jan 1962 - 12 Dec 1963 Malcolm John MacDonald
Independence for Kenya started on the 12th of December 1962, with the intermediate head of state prior to elections being HM Queen Elizabeth II, represented by the ‘Governor General’ Malcolm John MacDonald, until 12th December 1964, when Jomo Kenyatta became the 1st president.
I can confirm the 1st Battalion Duke of Wellington’s Regiment (West Riding) served in Kenya, under the command of Lt-Col AD Firth MBE, MC, and returned to Meeanee Barracks in Colchester on the 24th November 1969. Although the grenadier Guards were the standby ‘Spearhead battalion’ for rapid deployment the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment (West Riding) was stood to in preference and given 48 hours to have 650 soldiers deploy. The problem was:- the battalion was on block leave!
Four hundred telegrams were sent out on the 27th of July to recall soldiers to barracks, at a cost of £19, 10s 0d. Some officers on leave had to be flown back from Gibralter and Ireland and one cycling around France located by the British Consulate in Paris. By 19:00 hrs on the 29th of July the first chalk of 650 men plus an additional 150 attachments took off from RAF Lyneham, enroute to Akrotiri in Cyprus, flying in Britannia and Comet aircraft., then onward to Aden deviating over Turkey and the Persian Gulf to keep out of Arabian airspace. Then from Aden to Nairobi and Finally to Nakuru airfield, where they were to be stationed with the 5th Battalion of the Kings African Rifles. The final chalk of men arrived at Nakuru on the 31st of July, just four days after the battalion was mobilised!
Thanks to Richard Harvey, Regimental Archivist, Duke of Wellington's Regiment Museum, for this detailed entry.

39 Brigade (two or three battalions of British troops)
   39 Brigade HQ Signals Attachment at Thika/Nanyuki. I was on tour from Aug. 1954 until Nov 1955 attached to 39 Brigade HQ Thika/Nanyuki Royal Signals, personnel remembered Sergeant Bruce Howie and Captain Woodbridge August 1954 to November 1955. My immediate comrades were Des Hanley, Jim Mortimer and John Doe. Thanks to Alan J. Cooper for this entry.
   1st Battalion The XXth The Lancashire Fusiliers, The 1st Bn The XXth The Lancashire Fusiliers were the first Infantry Bn to go to Kenya to deal with the Mau Mau uprising. For the first 6 months of their tour,they were the only British Infantry Bn in the country. 20th October 1952 to 21st August 1953.
This is a link to the British Pathe News film coverage of the arrival of the LFs into Kenya:- www.lancs-fusiliers.co.uk/music/films/42_12.wmv
This is a link to the Kenya page of the LFs web site which I run:- http://www.lancs-fusiliers.co.uk/gallerynew/kenya52-54!!!/1LFkenya.htm
   1st Battalion The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) replaced Lancashire Fusiliers 8/1953. Replaced 1955. I served in 8 Platoon C company for five months. Most of my time in Kenya was searching for mau mau gangs in the Aberdare forest.
   1st Battalion, Royal Irish Fusiliers - Nairobi in 1953-54. Replaced Black Watch. Returned in 1956 and left in 1957.
    C Company, Royal Irish Fusiliers. 1935-1955.
   The Buffs (Royal East Kent Regiment) (4/1953-12/54) 290 Mau Mau killed and 194 captured for one man lost.
   The Queen's Own Buffs (Royal East Kent Regiment) stationed at Gil Gil, May 1961 to Jan 1962.
   1st King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (12/54-8/1955)
   The Devons (The Devonshire Regiment) (4/1953-12/54) ? Mau Mau, for 11 killed. 1 x DSO, 1 x MC, 1 x MBE, 2 x BEM, 3 x MID, 3 x QCBC awarded.
   The Rifle Brigade, November 1954 -May 1956
We landed at Mombasa off the Georgic then by train to Thika then to Naro Moru then to Barkers Farm Nanyuki spent in the Aberdares then to Naivasha then Nakuru.Built a road up Mount Kenya though the bamboo where landrovers expired and had to use pack ponies,this was to get over Mount Kenya to Meru, where saw the Chuka dancers.
NOTE the rifle brigade were told they were replacing the Buffs when they moved to Kenya.
   1st Battalion The Rifle BrigadeC Company, Stationed at Thika and Nanyuk. Left Liverpool to Mombassa on MV Georgic.

49 Brigade
   HQ 49 Independent Infantry Brigade Signal Troop, Located at Nanyuki then moved on to Kabete, 17 miles from Nairobi. Commanding Officer Brigadier George Taylor. From October 1953 to October 1956.
   1st Battalion, The Royal Northumberland Fusiliers, arrived September 1953 and withdrawn April 1956.
   1st Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (September 1953 - July 1955), Stationed at various times usually by companies in Nairobi (Polo ground then race course) Meru, Fort Hall, Nanyuki, Naivasha, Isiolo and Marianges. Awarded Freedom of Nairobi. Second tour of Kenya & Kuwait 1960 - 63.
Arrived in Nairobi,and were camped at the racecourse carried out patrols etc in and around the city,my company support company moved to meru where we patroled the Abadare forrests at the foot mount kilomanjiro,I was seconded to the Kenya police to train asian combat units that were part of the asian community effort in the fight against Mau Mau.
I was a national serviceman posted to GilGil Kenya, from Wuppertal W.Germany, January 1960 to April 1961. The battalion was part of the 24th Infantry Brigade, The CO was Lt.Col.Slane. Most of our exercises were to the border area of Somalia and Ethiopia. A & B Company were based in Bahrein. I have to say I was not very proud of the British historical role in Kenya. Although we were not allowed to fraternise with the native community I was able to compile a diary of many discussions with local native nationalists.
   1st King's Shropshire Light Infantry (6/1955-11/1956)
   1st Gloucestershire Regiment (April 1955 to April 1956 at Gil-Gil)

70 Brigade (five or six battalions of King's African Rifles)

2nd Coldstream Guards, based at Gil Gil. March 1959 to February 1962. A Half battalion detachment was maintained in Bahrain as part of 24 Bde's commitment to reinforce Kuwait in the face of Iraqi aggression. The detachment deployed to Kuwait to counter the expected invasion by Iraq. No.1 Company, 1st Coldstream Guards were deployed to Kenya to reinforced 2 Coldstream Guards. The Bahrain detachment was sent to Zanzibar to restore order in September 1961. All Coldstream Guards returned home in February 1962, after being replacd by the 2nd Battalion Scots Guards.
2nd Battalion Scots Guards, replaced 2nd Coldstream Guards in 1961.
3 Company Irish Guards, 3 coy irish guards attached to scots guards 1962- independence took part in independent handover.
1st Battalion The Cameronians (Scottish Rifles), Muthaiga tented camp on the outskirts of Nairobi. HQ and Support Companies Camp began setting up in May 1957. At the time of the 1st Bn's move to Kenya (from Bahrein) the Commanding Officer was Lt. Col. A.C.A. Mackinnon, M.B.E. He was succeeded in December 1959 by Lt.Col. CGI Harper, MC who was succeeded in December 1961 by Lt.Col.AR Kettles, OBE., MC. Lt Col DB Riddell-Webster succeded him in June 1964. In November 1966 Lt.Col. LPG Dow became Commanding Officer of the 1st Bn. and served up to its disbandment in May 1968. Thanks to J.J. Evans for the amendment..
3rd The King's Own Hussars
1st Battalion, The King's Own Border Regiment
1st Btn. Royal Fusiliers left uk 1958 troop ship dunera dropped off half the batt in bahrein and then carried on to kenya other half batt changed round after 6 months i was an assault pioneer and finished up with the sas on the assault on jebel akhdar in the oman.
8th Kings Royal Irish Hussars, 1953 - 1956
1st Battalion, Rifle Brigade
C Company 8th Battalion Durham Light Infantry
1st Battalion, The Rifle Brigade (11/54-5/1956)
East African Independent Armored Car Squadron
Gordon Highlanders - based at Gil Gil near Nakuru.
Kings Regiment, Manchester and Liverpool This regiment was in Kenya from 1959 to 1962. 1st battalion was based in Gil Gil in 1959 the battalion had two rifle companies, a/tk,mortors and m/c gun plt in Bahrain, they rejoined the battalion in 1960-61 in Muthaiga camp outside Nairobi. The battalion was sent to Kuwait in 1961. The battalion left Kenya Jan/Feb 1962 for the UK. Many Thanks to Manny Mercer for this entry.
1st battalion Kings Regiment, Manchester and Liverpool we were stationed at muthaiga just outside nairobi. we were commanded by colonel holt the 2ic being major clutterbuck. while we were there we went to kuwait when iraq first threatened them and the iraquis decided not to come. we also did escort duties bringing out refugees from the congo.
I was in kenya most of 1960-1961.
1st Battalion The Staffordshire Regiment, I served with the battalion in Kenya at KLahawa barracks from 1962-1964 and and was present during the East African mutiny in Uganda in 1964, one of our companies was relieved from securing the Entebbe airport by 2nd btn Scots Guards during this period. Thanks to Bill Snee for this entry.
The Kenya Regiment.
The Kenya Regiment was formed pre WW2  (1936) and served until 1945 in Madagascar and Burma  when it was disbanded. The recall of volunteers started again in about 1950 with european settlers making up the main force. At the end of 1950, a call up eighteen year olds was introduced as the rumblings from the Mau Mau was making its presence felt. The first recruits were sent to Salisbury in (then) Southern Rhodesia for basic military training and then on to operational units. The Kenya Regiment then operated as a part of combined operations, which included British Regiments, Kings African Rifles, Kenya Police, Royal Air Force and units of Kenya Police Reserve. Apart from the Kenya Regiment operating in its own right, they were also instrumental in seconding Officers to the Kings African Rifles. ( Information supplied by Mr. Neil McDonald)
The Regiment was formed on 1 June 1937. Recruiting after WWII started in March 1950. The decision to suspend the Kenya Regiment was taken on 25 March 1963 and its final parade was held in Nairobi in May 1963. The Regiment had over 7000 members and was latterly multi-racial.
l5th East African Division, Kings African Rifles.

I Force Based on Squairs farm, Aberdare Ranges. Commanding Officer was Major Neville Cooper, December 1952 to March 1953. I Force was a special Force comprising seconded members from the Kenya Regiment,KAR & KPR.

Royal Artillery


3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery - 3 RHA was stationed in GIL GIL with a standby commitment to fly to the aid of OMAN if so required. The regiment arrived at the end of the emergency in Kenya and had a Battery detached to Aden. Duties in KENYA were primarily showing the flag sweeps and officiating at the KENYA and UGANDA UHURU ceremonies. Many Thanks to RAY (Wings) Wakeman 22209938 for the detailed information.
A battery of East African Artillery, King's Shropshire Light Infantry
156 Battery East African Artillery, based at Airfield Camp Nanuki 1953 to 1955.
1952 to 1955 camp Nanuki in the first 3 years we fired 1,280 roundes we also losted 3 men

Royal Army Service Corps

Headquarters, RASC, Mackinnon Road I was Adjutant, CRASC, Mackinnon Road, from 27 May 1947 to 1 August 1949. CRASC was Lt Col Houchin. Major Adams was OC 37 Supply Depot, Kahawa, when I was there from 14 October 1951 to 5 July 1952. Thanks to F R (Dick) Corner for this entry.
My father Capt R (Dick) Veale was adjutant CRASC under Lt Col Houchin from 1949 to 1952 (probably took over from Dick Corner).
Royal Army Service Corps (R.A.S.C.) personnel seconded to KAR Field Record Office, Nairobi. Field Record Office. Clerks Training Wing. 1961-1964.
19 Tank Transporter Company. R.A.S.C
37 Supply Depot R.A.S.C
60th Company. R.A.S.C, stationed in Gil Gil with a few M.P's and R.E.M.E. Down the road was a R.E.M.E. Co. and the Coldstream Guards. They moved to Nairobi and were replaced by the Inniskillings Our C.O. was a Maj. Corey. "B" squad was sent to Uganda when Idi Amin acted up.
77coy rasc -107/111 composite platoon Based NYERI, KENYA 53-55. Capt Blackburn/Major Reece. Supply Point with 12-20men. Detachment from 77 coy KAHAWA, Nairobi. Camp also contained EARASC unit. Thanks to John Menary for this entry.
77 Transport Company, R.A.S.C. REME LAD CO Captain Leonard, stationed at Camp Kahawa with a ROAC depot during 1953-1956. A prison camp.
242 Company. R.A.S.C, on the Mackinnon Rd, Kenya.
Animal Transport Company, Stationed at Nanyuki during the Emergency.

Royal Engineers

34 Independent Field Squadron, Royal Engineers. 1959, stationed at Gilgil, Kenya. CO was major (chalky) White. 2ic was capt Warwick.Troop officer capt Pulverman took 4 troop to the top of Kilimanjaro as a PR exercise for the Sapper and Soldier magazine. I was stationed there from june 1959 to july 1960, as interpreter (I spoke swahili), brought up in Nakuru, not far from Gilgil. Returned to the UK to do my National Service. Thanks to 23564904 L/Cpl Summerfield for this entry.
CO Major Eddy Fursdon RE, succeeded by Major Bull RE in 1963. The Squadron was located at Gil Gil during 1960-1963 as sapper support for 24th Infantry Brigade. Other officers including trp officers. Capt Macbeth, Capt Burnett, Capt."Birdman"Eagles, Lt "Noddy" Lloyd 2/lt Jock Barr. and 2/lt Byrne. SSM was WO2 Derek Quick, OMSI WO2 Tyler. Workshop Troop officer WO2 Dennis Bonney.
During 1963-64 The Squadron was constructing the Dadaab-Wajir road in the NorthEastern district so that security forces couldaccess remote areasduring the Somali-Shifta insurrection. L/cpl Benn Gunn was commemorated by the Gunn causeway through the Lorian swamp.
This Sqn was attached to 24 Brigade and saw service in Kuwait July/Aug 61. In Feb 1964 while the Sqn was in the north of Kenya we lost one of our men a L/cpl Gunn to friendly fire. Thanks to Derrick "Taff" Hann & Ron Knight for this entry.
36 corps engineer reg RHQ roberts barracks Osnabruik 1955 Suez 56 then back to Osnabruik
39 Corps Engineer Regiment Comprised of the three squadrons listed below. The regiment constructed 300 miles of roads in Aberdare Forest region & 400 miles of road in Mt Kenya region. In 1955 - constructed camps for British troops. Regt disbanded in the UK in 1955.
   72 Field Park Squadron, 39 Corps Engineer Regiment. formed up at Crickhowell South Wales. Arrived in Kenya October 1953, the OC 72 fld sqn was a Major Beddall RE. Troop officers Capt Julius, Lt John Peel 2/lt Roberts.
   73 Field Park Squadron, 39 Corps Engineer Regiment. 73 Fd Sqn remained when the regiment was disbanded and was re-named 73 Indp Sqn, RE.
   74 Field Park Squadron, 39 Corps Engineer Regiment. The Royal Engineers went to Kenya Oct/Nov 1953, and were stationed at Ellis Camp, Nyeri. They built and maintained roads in the Aberdare forest and on Mount Kenya. From what I can remember the CO of plant troop was Captain W Donaldson, I served there until March 1955. The OC of 74 Field Park was a Major Haynes. Information supplied by George N Henderson ex sapper Royal Engineers, amendments by Brian Turner (ex.L.cpl).
89 Field Survey Squadron, was formed specially to update inadequate maps. Disbanded 1959. Based in Nairobi, but working as field troop in the NFD from 1957 -1959.

Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers

47 COMD Workshop REME, In situ in Kenya prior to 1952.
7 Infantry Brigade Workshop REME, Sent to Kenya as reinforcements.
20 Infantry Brigade Workshop REME, Sent to Kenya as reinforcements.
20 Infantry Workshops REME, part 24th ind inf brigade, Based at Kawaha 1958 to1959 we used to go on exercises to Gil Gil Rift valley etc We had a CSM join us in late 58 called Peter Miguel alias 'The Mig'.
Station Workshops REME, Located at Nanyuki, Nyen & Nairobi.
Rifle Range Camp, Nairobi
Command Workshops, Kahawa Co was Major Wyrral Major Doddington 1950-1954
REME LAD first stationed at rifle range camp Nairobi. Then attached to HQ49th IND Infantry Brigade at Kabete 17miles north of Nairobi. OIC Captain Callander, WO1 Prideaux 1954 to 1956. Thansk to L/Cpl Peter Marriott Electrician Vehicle / Plant for this entry.

Royal Signals

Army Wireless Chain Signal Squadron, A.W.C.S.S. C.O. Major Tom Mullis, Stationed at RAF Eastleigh.
Royal Signals, Units of the Royal Signals served with the King's African Rifles based at at Buller camp in Niarobi.
COMCAN Signals Squadron, Royal Signals, Eastleigh Airport between 1954 and 1956. The C.O. was Major Holland. The unit was responsible for all military communications between GCHQ, U.K. Singapore and Australia. Thanks to Brian Hennessey for the entry.
East Africa Command Signal Squadron, Stationed at Buller Camp, Nairobi. 1955-57 we used to operate out of HQ Nairobi.
20 Signal Regiment, Camp Kahawa b.f.p.o.10. Kenya.
70 (EA) Infantry Brigade Signal Troop, A troop of Royal Signals personnel plus locally recruited Africans. Based at Nyeri at Brigade Headquarters, the troop was responsible for all Signals traffic to the KAR battalions and to GHQ Nairobi during the Mau Mau emergency 1953 onwards. Commanding Officer in 1953/55 was Captain Saul.
CO 1955-57 Major RTM Sharp, Moved from Nyeri to Airfield Camp, Nanyuki 1956. Thanks to Nic Allen.
209 Signal Squadron, 209 Signals detachment with 1 Duke of Wellingtons Regiment July 1960, squadron at Kahawa camp relieved 210 sigs sqn who went to Kuwait in 1961. Thanks to Rob Norcross for this entry.
210 Signal Squadron, based at kahawa from 1961-1964.
602 Signal Troop, Special Communications based at RNAS langata .O C Capt A V Swindale nov 1960 --1963.

Royal Army Medical Corps

British Military Hospital Nairobi (Army Health Unit)AHU based at Bmh Nairobi with a detachment at Nakuru area covered by AHU included all KAR regts in Uganda up to the Somali border. Commanding Officer Capt Ted Roberts RAMC Tour 1956 to Late 57.
National Service July 60 - April 62: based at BMH Nairobi (part 24th Ambulance Brigade?) and had contact with 1Bn Royal Inniskillen Fusiliers; 1st Kings: 1st Gordons: 1st Staffs; 1st Coldstream Guards. I knew Lt Chivers - and Rowlands...before his promotion!
No.1 Company, Royal Army Medical Corps Nairobi.
No.12 Company, Royal Army Medical Corps Nairobi. Lt.Col.Gleave RAMC January 1954 to July 1954.
24 Field Ambulance, Royal Army Medical Corps 24 Field Ambulance was part of 24 Brigade and was stationed at Kahawa. It comprised Headquarters Section and 3 medical sections which were usually attached to infantry regiments on exercise. In 1961, a bone of contention at 24 Fld Amb. was that all 24 Brigade personnel had to be in camp by 01.00 but those stationed at the B.M.H. were required to be in camp in time for their next duty. Down at the hospital the C.O. was Major Moore and, in January 61 we 'welcomed' 2 newly commissioned officers: Lt Chivers who became Admin Officer and Lt D.S. Rowlands as Q.M. but every medic of that time remembered Lt Rowlands as the Dept R.S.M..
Station Hospital Nanyuki, Located in Nanyuki.
Comd Medical Equipment Depot, Located in Nairobi.
Army Hospital Unit E Africa Location not known.
Medical reception Station, Nakuru. OC Capt Ilis.R.A.M.C. 2nd I/c Lt Roberts R.A.M.C.
The Medical Reception Station was in the Depot and Training Estlblishment of the Kings African Rifles, Nakuru.
I was stationed there for 12 months, and was then posted to 73 Ind Field Sqd, Royal Engineers, Nyeri, This was when 72 & 74 sqn's disbanded, leaving 73 ind field sqn R.E. At Nyeri.
Thanks to George E A Nicholls for this entry.

Royal Army Ordnance Corps

Location: Camp Kawaha nr. Nairobi
Commanding Officers: Col. Harley Davis
Duration: 2-year tour
1956 to 1958 We were maintaining and guarding a large weapons depot / stores, and shipped weapons back to Aden in case there was a problem of deliveries to the Middle East.
Due to the transfer of the Central High Command from Kenya to Aden we were then fall under the East African High Command.
Serving Comrades were: Corp. Jimmy MacCulloch (Huyton Liverpool), Sgt. T. Savory from Ackoks Green Birmingham), This info is provided by L-Cpl Robert Harries, aka Taffy.
Rifle Range Camp, Nairobi We were based at Rifle Range Camp Nairobi,while working at Command Ordnance Depot Kahawa. I was a national service man 1953 to 1955.Due to the Mau Mau uprising we often had to take on the duties of infantry, going on searches, ambushes,etc. We were known as the Ordnance Infanteers.
No 32 Infantry Independent Brigade Ordnance Field Park, based at Nyeri from March 1954 to February 1955. There were two COs at that time Captain George Pope (RAOC) and Captain Harry Phillips OBE (RAOC)
24th Independent Infantry Brigade Ordnance Field Park, I was attached to the OFP at Kahawa Camp, Nairobi during 1959/60. OC's during that period were Maj. GM Auld and Maj. W Spencer. I think Maj Spencer was followed by Maj R. Lumley. The OFP was a Brigade HQ unit and moved about the Middle East as required by the brigade's movements. Strength was c.65-70 men. Unit was a mobile technical supply facility handling weapons, MT spares, etc. Thanks to J.J. Evans for this entry.

Royal Army Pay Corps

Royal Army Pay Corps, RNAS camp, Nairobi west.
No.1 and No.2 Coy A.T.S, The ATS served in Nairobi from 1940. They supplied the clerical support for all Headquarters units.

Royal Army Vetinary Corps

Royal Military Police

618 SMPS at Nairobi West, also attached to HQ 39 Independant Infantry Brigade. CO Captain J. O'Connor.

Women's Royal Army Corps

Can't supply much information at present. However, this now disbanded regiment was present and some personnel were awarded the Africa General Service medal with the clasp Kenya. One such award was to W/385896 Private B.E.A.Talbot (W.R.A.C.)

Navy

H.M.S. Kenya, arrived in Mombasa about August 1952 from Cyelon after a period in dry dock. Upon Arrival HMS Kenya carried out a show of force with a march through the city with Royal Marine band and bayonets fixe, then providing aid to the civil power until the army arrived. HMS Kenya achored offshore as a safety precaution shortly after arriving. During this time Petty Officer Plew was stabbed in the back whilst ashore but not fatally.

Local forces

Kenya Police, Towards the end of 1951 the Legislative Council i.e. the local Kenya Government, took powers of conscription and many locally employed British civilians were called up, mainly to the Kings African Rifles but some to the Kenya Police. Not only did the latter engage Mau Mau with Police askaris in the forests and villages - often in isolated 'fortified' bomas (encampments)- but they also worked in the dangerous 'Locations' i.e. native townships surrounding Nairobi. Hence many a young British man coming to Kenya for a short tour of a few years in commerce, shipping, coffee growing, dam building and the like, found himself opposing the murderous Mau Mau.
Kenya Police Reserve which was several thousand strong and recruited mainly from the European population. It served largely as a part-time unit (having some full-time officers) alongside the Kenya Police.

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