Commonwealth Warriors

Commonwealth Warriors
Ready for Anything

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Come brave Newfoundlanders and join the Blue Puttees

In 1914, Newfoundland, then still a colony of the British Empire raised, equipped and sent the first 500 men to England before the rest of the 1000 strong regiment arrived. Their first deployment was as part of the Gallipoli campaign in 1915. On September 20, 1915 they arrived at Gallipoli. They retired on January 9, 1916. They were given two months rest before being sent to the Western Front in March, 1916. At the Battle of the Somme on July 1, 1916, the Royal Newfoundland Regiment was sent over the top.  Beaumont-Hamel was where they were virtually destroyed. This diaster would eventually lead to Newfoundland joining Canada as the 10th province in 1949. The Newfounland Celtic band Great Big Sea wrote a song entitled The Recruiting Sargeant about this unit. Today, it is part of the Canadian Reserve Army.

Royal Newfoundland Regiment:

Merry Christmas 2013

It's nearly a century since this event happened. But it's such a peaceful event, I wanted to share it from one of my favourite sites, In actuality, the soldiers on both sides were punished. see

Christmas Truce

Christmas Truce

Christmas 1914

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Youth Cadet movements

One of the by products of the Commonwealth is the influence on the youth of each region with Cadet movements.

The United Kingdom has the Combined Cadet Force (CCF) Army Cadet Force (ACF) Royal Navy and Royal Airforce cadets. I met some of these cadets when I was in the 78th Highlanders and 3rd Bde. Royal Artillery as they visited the Halifax Citadel.

Canada has The Royal Canadian Army Cadets, The Navy Leauge of Canada cadets, Sea Cadets, Air Cadets. My father was a founding officer of the Enfield Legion cadets in Enfield, Nova Scotia. My best friend in high school joined them and eventually became the cadet commander. He also was one of 3 Canadian cadets to be sent to the British Army School of Piping in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Australia also has a Youth Cadet movement. I met some of these Cadets and their officers when I visited the Kapyong Memorial in Kapyong, Republic of Korea back in 1998.

Hong Kong also has a cadet movement, despite the colony going back to China.

More to follow

Saturday, 9 November 2013

My Canadian army at War 1939-45 in 1/72

I would add pictures of my Canadian army in minature except for one reason:
 the figures are back in Nova Scotia.
However does have shots and box art which can illustrate what I have.
 The figure sets I did use include
Airfix WW2 British Infantry X1(plasticsoldierreview)
Italeri/Esci British Infantry X3(plasticsoldierreview)
Matchbox British Infantry X1(plasticsoldierreview)
Revel British 8th Army Scottish Infantry X 2
Click for larger image(plasticsoldierreview)

Royal Canadian Artillery
Click for larger image(plasticsoldierreview)

Third Canadian Infantry Division:
Major-General R.F.L. Keller (1900-1954) Maj-Gen. R.F.L. Keller Commander, Third Canadian Infantry Division. (
Sherman V tankSherman Tank of Fort Garry Horse (
Fighting in the Netherlands, 12 April 1945 South Alberta Light Horse beating off the Germans (

Friday, 4 October 2013

British Army DPM

British DPM Disrupted Pattern Material was initialy designed for the British Army back in 1966. By 1968, it was general issue to all regiments in the British Army.
Many Commonwealth forces adopted this uniform.
The DPM I am modeling consists of a pair of Soldier 95 trousers, and a combat jacket. My helmet is a Canadian M1 issue with foilage attached. This is what a marksmen/sniper might have worn if deployed to Europe or in Canada. The rifle is my 1910 Ross Rifle which was sporterized. The scope was a Christmas present from my father when I was 16. The rifle still shoots well.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

The garrison of the Halifax Citadel, National Historic Site, Halifax, Nova Scotia

The Halifax Citadel Regimental Association is a non-profit group which provides the soldiers for the garrison of the Halifax Citadel every summer.

Myself with my children with a L/Cpl of the regiment. He was corporal of the guard that day. I'm wearing my old glengarry with the Seaforth Highlanders cap badge. My sporran also has the stags head as I was a drummer sgt n another reenactment regiment. I served as a private in the 78th Highlanders as a university student.

My children and I with a Sargeant of the 3rd Brigade, Royal Artillery, the other regiment I served with as a student.
This is an excellent program which represents two proud regiments, but also gives great work experience to the men and women who are high school, college or university students.
who knows? My son and daughter might follow me into the regiment! The private is wearing the undress, or drill uniform. This is what we wore when going about our duties inside the fort, usually when doing drill. We'd save our redcoats for sentry duty, and for formal drill displays. There are alot of brass buttons to shine on them!
The weather was too wet that day for them to wear their feather bonnets. The feathers will drip dye out onto our uniforms which stain them.


Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Canadian army has been restored!

The government of Canada has finally rewarded the Canadian Army with their historic names, rank insignia, rank names.
Rather than the civilian sounding, or shall I say American sounding wordings, our army is once again known by the names it fought under prior to 1968.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013


Rhodesia, now known as Zimbabwe, was an interesting part of the Commonwealth, they unilaterally declared independence from the UK in 1964, though this was never recognised by any country. From that time until 1979, they fought a guerrilla war with black nationalists who wanted their own share of democracy.

Southern Africa at that time was a place of whites first, Africans at the last. But surprisingly, the majority of the members of the Rhodesian military were blacks!

The Royal Rhodesian Regiment
Rhodesian Army 1970's
The Selous Scouts
Rhodesian Selous Scouts

The Rhodesian Light InfantryRhodesian Light Infantry
The Rhodesian Special Air Service.
Rhodesian Irregulars 1970's

Unfortunately for the European population, the anger and humiliation suffered by blacks resulted in Rhodesia being changed to Zimbabwe, and Europeans living in terror. Even now, the government is still led by one of the African leaders Mugabe, who had fought in the guerrilla war.
Rhodesian UR-416 Pig

Not only were members Rhodesian born, but also volunteers from the US, the UK, Canada, West Germany, and anyone who could speak English. Many of the Americans were Vietnam war veterans.

Friday, 24 May 2013

The Commonwealth garrison of Singapore 1942

Commonwealth Warriors: The Battle of Singapore 1942


Singapore was the major British base in South East Asia. The garrison was made up of British, British Indian Army, Australian and colonial troops.

After the Japanese cut off the water supply, the garrison was forced to surrender. It was the worst defeat the British ever suffered.

 Click for larger image(plasticsoldierreview)

British Army:

18th Division

118th Field Regt. RA

135th (Hertfordshire Yeomanry) Field Regt. RA

148th (Bedfordshire Yeomanry) Field Regt. RA

125th Anti-Tank RA

18th Battn, The Recce Regt. 5th Battn, The Loyal Regiment (North Lancashire)

9th Battn, The Royal Northumberland Fusiliers (MG)

53rd Inf Bde.

2nd Battn The Cambridgeshire Regt.

5th Battn, The Royal Norfolk Regt.

6th Battn, The Royal Norfolk Regt.

54th Inf Bde.

4th Battn, The Royal Norfolk Regt.

4th Battn, The Suffolk Regt.

5th Battn, The Suffolk Regt.

55th Inf Bde.

1st Battn, The Cambridgeshire Regt.

5th Battn, The Befordshire and Hertfordshire Regt.

1st/5th Battn, The Sherwood Foresters

Fortress Singapore

1st Malaya Bde.

2nd Battn, Loyal Regiment (North Lancashire)

1st Battn Malay Regt.

2nd Battn, Malay Regt.


2nd Malaya Bde.


1st Battn Manchester Regt.

2nd Battn, Gordon Highlanders

2nd Battn, 17th Dogra Regt.

In reserve 2nd Battn Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (


Australian Army (

8th Division

22nd Bde, New South Wales

2/18th Battn

2/19th Battn

2/20th Battn

23rd Bde,

2/21st Battn, Victoria

2/22nd Battn, Victoria

2/40th Battn Tasmania

27th Bde.

2/26th Battn Queensland

2/29th Battn Victoria

2/30th Battn, New South Wales

2/10th Field Regt. RAA

2/14th Field Regt. RAA

2/15th Field Regt. RAA

2/3rd Anti-Tank Regt. RAA

2/4th Anti-Tank Regt. RAA

2/4th Machine-Gun Regt, Western Australia

2/3rd Pioneer Battn


British Indian Army

III Corps (

9th Indian Infantry Division

3/17th Dogra Regt

2/10th Baluch Regt

2/12th Frontier Force Regt (Sikhs)

1st Mysore Infantry

1st Hyderabad

22nd Indian Inf Bde.

2/18th Royal Garhwal Rifles

5/11th Sikh Regt.

1/13th Frontier Force Rifles

5th Field Regt. RA 4.5inch Howitzers (model with WWI guns)

88th Field Regt. RA 25pdrs

80th Anti-Tank Regt. RA 2pdr/47mm guns

21st Mountain Battery Indian Artillery 3.7 inch Mountain Howitzers


11th Indian Infantry Division

6th Indian Inf Bde

1/8th Punjab Regt.

2nd East Surrey Regt.

2/16th Punjab Reft.

15th Indian Inf Bde.

1st Leicestershire Regt.

1/14th Punjab Regt.

2/9th Jat Regt.

28th Indian Inf Bde.

2/1st Gurkha Rifles

2/2nd Gurkha Rifles. (

2/9th Gurkha Rifles


3rd Cavalry

1st Bn Bahawalpur Infantry

137th Field Regt. RA 25pdrs

155th Field Regt. RA 4.5inch howitzers

22nd Mountain Regt. IA 3.7inch howitzers

80th Anti-tank Regt. RA 2pdr/47mm

100th Light Tank Sqd



Malayian units

1st Battn, Federated Malay States Volunteer Forces

2nd Battn Federated Malay States Volunteer Forces

3rd Battn Federated Malay States Volunteer Forces

4th Battn Federated Malay States Volunteer Forces

1st Light Field Regt, Federated Malay States Volunteer Forces

Armoured Car Squadron Federated Malay States Volunteer Forces

Sarawak Rangers

11th Coastal Regt. Hong Kong and Singapore RA

3rd Battn, Straits Settlements Volunteer Force

When I returned to Canada, my father had acquired an Imperial Japanese Army helmet. Someone thought it had been a Soviet Union helmet and had painted a peace symbol on it.
When I looked at it, all I could think of is some poor, scared, angry young boy who was told to die for his emperor fighting against the largest allied force ever assembled. And the face I saw was the face of my two older Japanese sons.

The Canadian Army: Cavalry Regiments 1939-89

After the First World War, the Regiments of Horse which the Canadian army possesed, slowly changed to regiments of truck, tank and armoured car.
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The Royal Canadian Armoured Corps

A game of cards, France, summer 1944
Troopers of the 29th Armoured Reconnaissance Regiment (The South Alberta Regiment) enjoying a game of cards in front of their camouflaged Sherman tank, France, summer 1944. (DND) Trooper, 29th Armoured Reconnaissance Regiment (The South Alberta Regiment), 1944-45

Trooper, 29th Armoured Reconnaissance Regiment (The South Alberta Regiment), 1944-45
This tank crewman is a identifiable by the cap badge he wears on the black beret of the Canadian Armoured Corps. The 29th Armoured Reconnaissance Regiment (The South Alberta Regiment) was the divisional armoured reconnaissance regiment of 4th Canadian Armoured Division. This man wears the British 'Oversuit, Tank Crews' introduced in late 1944. It was nicknamed the 'Pixie Suit' by the troops. Reconstruction by Ron Volstad. (Canadian Department of National Defence)


The Royal Canadian Dragoons  These Regiments are equipped with the

Lord Strathcona’s Horse Canadian M4A3E8 Sherman tanks, Korea, 1951
Canadian M4A3E8 Sherman tanks, Korea, 1951
Sherman tanks of 'C' Squadron, Lord Strathcona's Horse (Royal Canadians) (2nd Armoured Regiment) in Korea, 1951. (DND)  

  Leopard 2 Tank and the Coyote Recce ViechleLeopard C1 main battle tank, Canadian Forces, 1981
Leopard C1 main battle tank, Canadian Forces, 1981
The German Leopard C1 battle tank replaced the British Centurion in the Canadian Forces in 1978. (DND)

12e Regiment Blinde


Governor General’s Horse Guards

The Halifax Rifles(

8th Canadian Hussars

The Ontario Regiment

Queen’s York Rangers (1st American Regiment)

Sherbrooke Hussars

1st Hussars

Prince Edward Island Regiment

Royal Canadian Hussars

The British Columbia Regiment

South Alberta Light Horse

Sasketchewan Dragoons

King’s Own Calgary Regiment

The British Columbia Dragoons

The Fort Garry Horse

Regiment du Hull

The Windsor Regiment.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Hong Kong garrison, 1941

Britain's garrison of their colony of Hong Kong consisted of.

British Army: 2nd Battalion, Royal Scots
                       2nd Battalion, Middlesex Regiment (Machine-Gun)

Canadian Army: Royal Rifles of Canada
                           Royal Winnipeg Grenadiers (Machine-gun)Canadian infantryman, Hong Kong, December 1941(

Hong Kong Chinese Regiment
Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Force
1st Hong Kong Regiment Royal Artillery,
7th Rajput Regiment
14th Punjab Regiment
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Scottish troops of the Commonwealth

One of the by products of emigration from Scotland to the colonies, eventually led to the formation of Scottish Regiments to emulate the home country.
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The original units of the Scottish Division in the British Army consisted of

The Royal Scots
The Royal Highland Fusiliers
The King's Own Scottish Borderers
The Black Watch, the Royal Highland Regiment
The Queen's Own Highlanders (Seaforth and Cameron's)
The Gordon Highlanders
The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders
The Cameronions
The 51st Highland Volunteers
The 52nd Lowland Regiment
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The Canadian Army:
1st Battalion, Nova Scotia Highlanders
The Cape Breton Highlanders
The Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa
The Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada
The Seaforth Highlanders of Canada
The Highland Light Infantry of Canada
The 48th Highlanders of Canada
The Lorne Scots
The Lake Superior Scottish Regiment
The Toronto Scottish Regiment
The Black Watch, Royal Highland Regiment of Canada
Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders
1st Air Defence Regiment Lanark and Renfrew Scottish
The Royal Highland Fusiliers of Canada
The Essex and Kent Scottish
The Calgary Highlanders
The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada
Otherwise not a part of the Canadian Army but still perpetuates their heritage
78th Rosshire Buffs, garrison of Halifax Citadel 1869-71
2nd Battn, 84th Regiment, Royal Highland Emigrants, garrison of Atlantic Canada during the American Revolution 1775-84

The Australian Army:
The Royal Victoria Regiment, Victorian Scottish Regiment
The Royal South Australian Regiment, The South Australian Scottish
The Royal Western Australia Regiment, The Cameron Highlanders of Western Australia
The Royal New South Wales Regiment, The Byron Scottish Regiment

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The New Zealand Army:
1st Royal New Zealand Armoured Regiment of the New Zealand Scottish.

The South African Army
The First City Regiment, Tartan: Gramham of Montrose
The Pretoria Highlanders
The Transvaal Scottish
The Cape Town Highlanders
The Witwatersrand Rifles, Tartan: Douglas

Saturday, 18 May 2013

The Canadian Army 1939-89: Artillery Regiments

Specifically, in the Canadian army, there are two artillery regiments, The Royal Canadian Horse Trumpeter, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, 1933Artillery
Trumpeter, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, 1933. The RCHA’s uniform was similar to Britain’s Royal Horse Artillery. Watercolour by R.J. Marrion. (Canadian War Museum)  (  and The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery, otherwise known as the Royal Canadian Artillery.
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After the first world war, the RCA,
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The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery, otherwise known as the Royal Canadian Artillery (RCA), consists of 2 regiments of Royal Canadian Horse Artillery (the regular army gunners) 155mm Guns M777 Howitzer

 with 4 Air Defence Regiment using the ADATS and the 5e Regt d’artillerie legere du Canada, the regular French speaking artillery regiment.

The Reserve/Militia consists of 16 Field Regiments with 3 Independent Field Batteries. 105mm guns

1st Field (Halifax-Dartmouth) Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery

2nd Field Regt, RCA Montreal

3rd Field Regt, RCA Saint John

5th Field Regt, RCA Victoria

6th Field Regt, RCA Levis

7th Toronto Regiment RCA

10th Field Regt, RCA Regina

11th Field Regt, RCA Guelph

15th Field Regt, RCA Vancouver

20th Field Regt, RCA Edmonton

26th Field Regt, RCA Manitoba

30th Field Regt, RCA Ottawa

42nd Field Regt, (Lanark and Renfrew Scottish) RCA

49th Field Regt, RCA Sault St. Marie

56th Field Regt, RCA Brantford

62nd Field Regt, RCA Shawinigan

Independent Field Batteries

20th Independent Field, Leithbridge

84th Independent Field, Yarmouth

116th Independent Field, Kenora