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22 Regiment Royal Artillery Badge.jpg
Badge of the Regiment
Active 1947—2004
Country Flag of the United Kingdom.svg United Kingdom
Branch

Flag of the British Army.svg British Army

Role Anti-Aircraft Artillery
Size Regiment
Nickname(s) "The Welsh Gunners"
Engagements Malayan Emergency
Operation Banner
Operation Tosca
Sierra Leone Civil War
The 22nd Regiment Royal Artillery known operationally as (22 Regiment RA) was a former anti-aircraft regiment of the Royal Artillery, itself within the British Army. The regiment was finally disbanded following the Delivering Security in a Changing World reforms in 2003.

HistoryEdit

The 22nd Regiment was formed in 1947 following the reorganisation of the Royal Artillery. Upon formation the regiment had the following structure:

  • Regimental Headquarters - From RHQ 153rd Light AA Regiment
  • 47 Anti-Aircraft Battery - From 24 Coast Battery and 129 Light AA Battery
  • 53 Anti-Aircraft Battery - From 17 Coast Battery and 130 Light AA Battery)
  • 58 Anti-Aircraft Battery - From 18 Coast Battery and 131 Light AA Battery)

Upon formation the regiment was based in Husum-Holstein and was equipped with the 40mm Bofors. In 1948, the regiment moved to Oxford Barracks and reroled to infantry for Military Police duties. In 1949 the regiment moved to Northumberland Barracks and the next year 58 Battery left and 48 Battery joined. In 1957 the regiment moved to Llanion Barracks and 47 and 48 batteries were disbanded. Following this, 42 and 44 Batteries joined. In 1960 the regiment lost 44 battery.

In 1961 the regiment moved three times for barracks: Moore Barracks, Sundern Camp, then Mansergh Barracks. In 1964 the regiment moved to Llanelli Barracks. At the same time, the regiment was retitled as 22nd Light Air Defence Regiment and moved to RAF Seleter on an emergency tour of duty during the Malaysian Emergency. Following their tour of duty, the regiment moved back to the UK at Tonfauau Camp. In 1969 the regiment moved to Napier Barracks at the same time, 11 Battery joined the regiment. In 1971 the regiment moved to Moore Barracks and saw three deployments on Operation Banner: Nov 71 - Mar 72 (Drumahoe), Mar - Jul 73 (Londonderry), and then Nov 74 - Mar 75 (Londonderry). In 1975 the regiment moved to Napier Barracks where they were equipped with the brand new Tower Rapier Anti-Aircraft Missile System. The regiment then saw two deployments on Operation Banner: Sep 76 (42 Battery), and Nov 78 - Mar 79 (HMP Maze). In August 1983 following the end of the Falklands War 53 Battery deployed as the roulement AA battery. Then in October 42 battery joined and was based in San Carlos Harbour.

In 1984, following the 1981 Defence White Paper 11 battery and later 53 batteries were equipped with the new Tracked Rapier, with 35 and 42 batteries still keeping the Towed Rapier. The regiment then saw two small deployments: Jun - Dec 87 (Operation Banner) and Jun - Dec 90 (Operation Tosca, Cyprus). In 1992 following the Options for Change, the regiment moved to Rapier Barracks with 11 Battery remaining in Germany, and 20 battery being requipped with the Javelin. In 1993, the regiment was retitled as 22nd Regiment and saw a deployment to Northern Ireland (-20 Battery). In 1994, the regiment was reorganised into the following:

  • Regimental Headquarters at Rapier Barracks
  • 15 Headquarters Battery
  • 20 Light Anti-Aircraft Battery (Javelin)
  • 35 Anti-Aircraft Battery (Rapier)
  • 42 Anti-Aircraft Battery (Rapier)
  • 53 Anti-Aircraft Battery (Rapier)

In 1998, temporally following the Strategic Defence Review, the regiment was based at Napier Lines and saw three more deployments: Sierra Leone (20 Battery in 2000), Jun - Dec 03 (Operation Tosca), finally (20 Battery in Northern Ireland 2003). Finally in 2004, following the Delivering Security in a Changing World, the regiment was put into suspended animation.

During their time of existance, the regiment took the name of "The Welsh Gunners"due to their tradition of recruiting from Wales.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. "22nd Regt Royal Artillery (the Welsh Gunners)." Imperial War Museums, www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/59742.

SourcesEdit

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