67th (2nd Home Counties) Division

The history of 67th (2nd Home Counties) Division

On 31 August 1914 the War Office issued instructions for all units of the Territorial Force to form a reserve unit. The men who had agreed to serve overseas were separated from the rest. Those left as ‘home service only’ were formed into ‘second line’ units, which would be this reserve. They were joined by many new recruits from September 1914 onward.

The ‘first line’ 44th (Home Counties) Division went to India in October 1914 and the formation of the ‘second line’, the 2nd Home Counties Division, was accelerated. It remained at home throughout the war. Along with other ‘second line’ Divisions suffered it greatly from lack of equipment of all sorts, and training was inevitably affected. The infantry received Japanese rifles, quite different to the Lee-Enfields that equipped the British armies in the fields, and only got modern rifles and ammunition in late November 1915; the artillery were initially given some French guns and some 15-pounders for which there was no ammunition, and the gunners were not fully equipped until well into 1916.

Initial orders were to form the Division in the area around Windsor, and the three infantry brigades were duly located at Staines, Ascot and Sunninghill. By November 1915 the Division came under orders of Second Army, Central Force and had moved to Sevenoaks (HQ and 201 Brigade), Reigate and Redhill (200 Brigade), Tonbridge (202 Brigade and two RE Field Companies), Brighton (cyclists), Southborough (one RE Field Company). The artillery was scattered at Westerham, Brasted, Riverhead, Seal and Ightham. Further moves were made in 1916, with HQ going to Canterbury, but the Division remained in Kent.

Between September and the end of 1917 the infantry was completely reorganised, and at this time the Division lost its Territorial distinction, being renamed as just the 67th Division. During the winter it moved to Essex and Suffolk: Colchester (HQ, two brigades and some artillery and engineers), Ipswich (the other brigade and some artillery), Great Bentley (cyclists and heavy artillery), Driffield (some engineers).

The Division ceased to exist on 17 March 1919.

The order of battle of the 67th (2nd Home Counties) Division

200th (2/1st Surrey) Brigade Brigade was demobilised once 214th Brigade had joined the Division in February 1918
3/4th Bn, the Queen’s left to go to France, landing 1 June 1917
2/5th Bn, the Queen’s
2/5th Bn, the East Surrey Regiment
2/6th Bn, the East Surrey Regiment
4th (Extra Reserve) Bn, the North Staffordshire Regiment joined June 1917, left to go to France, landing 7 Oct 1917
200th Trench Mortar Battery joined June 1917, appears to have left by September 1917
276th Graduated Battalion joined 24 September 1917 (formerly 3rd Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn Northumberland Fusiliers on 27 October 1917
277th Graduated Battalion joined 24 September 1917 (formerly 9th Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn West Yorkshire Regiment on 27 October 1917
278th Graduated Battalion joined 24 September 1917 (formerly 9th Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn Sherwood Foresters on 27 October 1917
2/1st Bn, the Cambridgeshire Regiment joined 8 October 1917
201st (2/1st Middlesex) Brigade
2/7th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment left for Gibraltar February 1915
2/8th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment left for Gibraltar February 1915
2/9th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment disbanded November 1917
2/10th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment left April 1915
3/7th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment replaced 2/7th Bn, renamed 2/7th Bn on 10 June 1917
3/8th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment replaced 2/8th Bn, renamed 2/8th Bn on 15 June 1917
3/10th Bn, the Middlesex Regiment joined May 1915; left to go to France, landing 1 June 1917
4th (Extra Reserve) Bn, the South Staffordshire Regiment joined June 1917; left to go to France, landing 10 Oct 1917
201st Trench Mortar Battery joined June 1917, appears to have left by September 1917
280th Graduated Battalion joined 24 September 1917 (formerly 33rd Training Reserve Bn); renamed 51st (Graduated) Bn Hampshire Regiment on 27 October 1917
281st Graduated Battalion joined 24 September 1917 (formerly 93rd Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn Hampshire Regiment on 27 October 1917
282nd Graduated Battalion joined 24 September 1917 (formerly 57th Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn South Wales Borderers on 27 October 1917
2/7th Bn, the Essex Regiment joined 10 October 1917
52nd* (Graduated) Bn, the Rifle Brigade joined February 1918 *sources differ, some saying 51st
202nd (2/1st Kent) Brigade
2/4th Bn, the Buffs
2/5th Bn, the Buffs
3/4th Bn, the Royal West Kent Regiment left and landed in France 1 June 1917
2/5th Bn, the Royal West Kent Regiment disbanded November 1917
1st Bn, the Royal Guernsey Light Infantry joined May 1917, and landed in France 27 September 1917
284th Graduated Battalion joined 17 September 1917 (formerly 17th Training Reserve Bn); renamed 51st (Graduated) Bn King’s Royal Rifle Corps on 27 October 1917
286th Graduated Battalion joined 17 September 1917 (formerly 40th Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn Gordon Highlanders on 27 October 1917
2/5th Bn, the Suffolk Regiment joined 28 September 1917; disbanded April 1918
285th Graduated Battalion joined by 1 October 1917 (formerly 22nd Training Reserve Bn); renamed 52nd (Graduated) Bn King’s Royal Rifle Corps on 27 October 1917
52nd (Graduated) Bn, the Rifle Brigade joined 22 February 1918
214th Brigade joined from 71st Division 12 February 1918
2/7th Bn, the Durham Light Infantry left by 23 September 1918 and moved to North Russia
2/1st Warwickshire Yeomanry TF left by 2 September 1918
2/1st Hertfordshire Yeomanry TF left by 2 September 1918
16th Bn, the Queen’s left by 28 October 1918
4th Reserve Bn, the Buffs joined by 28 October 1918
4th Reserve Bn, the Royal Welsh Fusiliers joined by 28 October 1918
51st (Graduated) Bn, the Cheshire Regiment joined by 2 December 1918
52nd (Graduated) Bn, the Cheshire Regiment joined by 2 December 1918
Divisional Artillery
CCCXXXV (2/I Home Counties) Brigade, RFA broken up during 1917
CCCXXXVI (2/II Home Counties) Brigade, RFA
CCCXXXVII (2/III Home Counties) Brigade, RFA
CCCXXXVIII (2/IV Home Counties) (Howitzer) Brigade, RFA broken up during 1916
67th (2 Home Counties) Divisional Ammunition Column
1/1 Home Counties (Kent) Heavy Battery, RGA joined 30 October 1914, left 17 November 1915
2/1 Home Counties (Kent) Heavy Battery, RGA established 26 December 1914, left 7 February 1916
130th Heavy Battery, RGA attached 19 November 1915 – 7 February 1916, then Egypt
2/2 Lancashire Heavy Battery, RGA attached September 1916 – August 1917
2/1 Warwickshire Heavy Battery, RGA attached September 1916 – August 1917
XLIX Brigade, RFA joined with 214th Infantry Brigade, disbanded by 25 March 1918
2/1 London Heavy Battery, RGA joined 12 February 1918
2/2 London Heavy Battery, RGA joined 12 February 1918
Royal Engineers
II/I Home Counties Field Company
II/II Home Counties Field Company
I/III Home Counties Field Company joined 6 November 1915
67th (2nd Home Counties) Divisional Signals Company
Royal Army Medical Corps
2/1st Home Counties Field Ambulance left for 58th Division on 22 February 1916
2/2nd Home Counties Field Ambulance left for 58th Division on 22 February 1916
2/3rd Home Counties Field Ambulance left for 58th Division on 22 February 1916
67th Sanitary Section joined 5 June 1918
3/1st Home Counties Field Ambulance formed to replace 2/1st
3/2nd Home Counties Field Ambulance formed to replace 2/2nd
3/3rd Home Counties Field Ambulance formed to replace 2/3rd
Other Divisional Troops
2/1st Kent Cyclist Bn joined May 1917, left August 1917
67th Mobile Veterinary Section AVC
2nd Home Counties Divisional Train ASC By 10 November 1915 the units making up the Train had been numbered as 545, 546, 547 and 548 Companies ASC
67th Motor Ambulance Workshop absorbed into Divisional Train during 1916

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