The Field Companies RE

Field Company RE

The Field Companies formed on mobilisation

When the British government declared war on Germany, the War Office issued orders for mobilisation of the British Expeditionary Force in accordance with the existing plan. The 13 Field Companies then at home on a peacetime establishment were reorganised to create twelve Field Companies, two for each of the six Divisions of the BEF. Men required to bring these Companies up to war establishment units came from the RE Training Depot at Aldershot (mounted men) and the RE Reserve Battalion and Depot Companies at Chatham (dismounted men):

Field Company Allocation to Divisions
5th 2nd Division
7th 4th Division Aug 14 - Apr 15 then 48th Division to Jun 15 then 50th Division
9th 4th Division
11th 2nd Division Aug 14 - Dec 15 then 33rd Division
12th 6th Division
17th 5th Division Aug 14 - Mar 15 then 28th Division from Jun 15. Short-term attachments to 27th Division (Mar 15), 48th Division (May 15)
23rd 1st Division
26th 1st Division
38th 6th Division Aug 14 - Apr 15 then 28th Division
56th 3rd Division
57th 3rd Division Aug 14 - Apr 15 then 46th Division to Jul 15 then 49th Division
59th 5th Division

The Field Companies formed for the new regular (7th and 8th) Divisions

Orders were soon given to recall regular units that were on garrison duty overseas (often once they had been replaced by an outgoing Territorial unit). As thet arrived in England, these units were formed into new regular Divisions:

Field Company Allocation to Divisions
2nd 8th Division (October 1914, from Egypt)
15th 8th Division (October 1914, from Gibraltar where it was 15th Fortress Company)
54th 7th Division (September 1914, from Chatham)
55th 7th Division (September 1914, from South Africa) then Guards Division September 1915

Field Companies per Division expanded to three

In September 1914 an urgent recommendation was received from GHQ in France that the needs of war required a third Field Company per Division. This had been recommended in 1912 but not implemented. Arrangements were made for eight Territorial Field Companies to fill these places in the first eight Divisions. The Companies were given numbers in February 1917:

Field Company Allocation to Divisions
401st 2nd (Highland) Field Company TF, joined 7th Division January 1915 and in January 1916 to 51st Division
409th 1st (Lowland) Field Company TF, joined 1st Division
419th 1st (West Lancashire) Field Company TF, joined 4th Division February 1915 and then 55th Division in February 1916. Briefly attached 48th Division in April 1915.
438th 1st (Cheshire) Field Company TF, joined 3rd Division
483rd 1st (East Anglian) Field Company TF, joined 2nd Division January 1915
490th 1/1st (Home Counties) Field Company TF, joined 8th Division
491st 1/2nd (Home Counties) Field Company TF, joined 5th Division
509th 1st (London) Field Company TF, joined 6th Division

Field Companies raised for the last regular (27th, 28th and 29th) Divisions

Orders were given by the War Office to form three more regular Divisions from the last units recalled from overseas garrisons. As the regular Field Companies had all by now been allocated, arrangements were made for nine Territorial Field Companies to fill the places in the three new Divisions. The Companies were given numbers in February 1917:

Field Company Allocation to Divisions
410th 2nd (Lowland) Field Company TF, joined 29th Division in February 1915 to February 1916 then 52nd Division
446th 1st (Northumbrian) Field Company TF, joined 28th Division in December 1914 to June 1915 then 50th Division
455th 1st (West Riding) Field Company TF, joined 29th Division in March 1915
465th 1st (North Midland) Field Company TF, joined 28th Division in December 1914 to April 1915 then 46th Division

474th 1st (South Midland) Field Company TF, joined 27th Division in December 1914 to March 1915 then 3rd Division briefly then 5th Division to April 1915 then 48th Division
500th 1st (Wessex) Field Company TF, joined 27th Division

501st 2nd (Wessex) Field Company TF, joined 27th Division
510th 2nd (London) Field Company TF, joined 29th Division in December 1914
517th 3rd (London) Field Company TF, joined 28th Division in December 1914 to April 1915 then 47th Division

Field Companies raised for the formation of Kitchener's Armies

When the expansion of the army was sanctioned in August 1914, it required four Armies each of six Divisions to have two Field Companies each; that is, 48 new Field Companies:

Field Company Allocation to Divisions
First New Army, K1
61st 14th (Light) Division
62nd 14th (Light) Division
63rd 9th (Scottish) Division
64th 9th (Scottish) Division
65th 10th (Irish) Division to July 1918, then 3rd (Lahore) Division
66th 10th (Irish) Division
67th 11th (Northern) Division
68th 11th (Northern) Division
69th 12th (Eastern) Division
70th 12th (Eastern) Division
71st 13th (Western) Division
72nd 13th (Western) Division
Second New Army, K2
73rd 15th (Scottish) Division
74th 15th (Scottish) Division
75th

16th (Irish) Division to August 1915 then Guards Division

76th 16th (Irish) Division to August 1915 then Guards Division
77th 17th (Northern) Division
78th 17th (Northern) Division
79th 18th (Eastern) Division
80th 18th (Eastern) Division
81st 19th (Western) Division
82nd 19th (Western) Division
83rd 20th (Light) Division
84th 20th (Light) Division
Third New Army, K3. In January 1915 it was decided to add a third Field Company to each New Army Division and those Companies that had been raised for K3 were reassigned to the Divisions of K1 and K2.
85th 21st Division to January 1915 then 10th (Irish) Division
86th

21st Division to February 1915 then 11th (Northern) Division

87th 22nd Division to February 1915 then 12th (Eastern) Division
88th 22nd Division to February 1915 then 13th (Western) Division
89th 23rd Division to January 1915 then 14th (Light) Division
90th

23rd Division to January 1915 then 9th (Scottish) Division

91st 24th Division to January 1915 then 15th (Scottish) Division
92nd 24th Division to January 1915 then 18th (Eastern) Division
93rd

25th Division to January 1915 then 17th (Northern) Division

94th 25th Division to January 1915 then 19th (Western) Division
95th 26th Division to January 1915 then 16th (Irish) Division then in August 1915 to 7th Division
96th 26th Division to January 1915 then 20th (Light) Division
Fourth New Army, K4. In the reassignment noted above, the Companies raised for K4 were transferred to K3 Divisions.
97th 30th Division to January 1915 then 21st Division
98th 30th Division to January 1915 then 21st Division
99th 31st Division to February 1915 then 22nd Division
100th 31st Division to February 1915 then 22nd Division
101st 32nd Division to January 1915 then 23rd Division
102nd 32nd Division to January 1915 then 23rd Division
103rd 33rd Division to February 1915 then 24th Division
104th 33rd Division to February 1915 then 24th Division
105th 34th Division to February 1915 then 25th Division
106th 34th Division to February 1915 then 25th Division
107th 35th Division to February 1915 then 26th Division
108th 35th Division to February 1915 then 26th Division
Fifth New Army, K5. As new units continued to be raised, some were allotted to become the third Company in K4 Divisions and other joined K5 Divisions.
121st 36th (Ulster) Division
122nd 36th (Ulster) Division
123rd 38th (Welsh) Division
124th 38th (Welsh) Division
126th 21st Division from March 1915
127th 22nd Division by June 1915
128th 23rd Division from April 1915
129th 24th Division from April 1915
130th 25th Division May 15 -
131st 26th Division from 25 April 1915
150th 36th (Ulster) Division from March 1915
151st 38th (Welsh) Division from April 1915
152nd 37th Division from April 1915
153rd 37th Division from April 1915
154th 37th Division from April 1915
155th 16th (Irish) Division from August 1915
156th 16th (Irish) Division from August 1915
157th 16th (Irish) Division from August 1915
200th 'County Palatine' 30th Division from January 1915
201st 'County Palatine' 30th Division from January 1915
202nd 'County Palatine' 30th Division from January 1915
203rd 'Cambridge' 35th Division from January 1915
204th 'Empire' 35th Division from January 1915
205th 'Dundee' 35th Division from January 1915
206th 'Glasgow' 32nd Division from January 1915
207th 'Norfolk' 34th Division from February 1915
208th 'Norfolk' 34th Division from February 1915
209th 'Norfolk' 34th Division from February 1915
210th 'Leeds' 31st Division from January 1915
211th 'Leeds' 31st Division from January 1915
212th 'Tottenham' 33rd Division from July 1915
218th 'Glasgow' 32nd Division from January 1915
219th 'Glasgow' 32nd Division from January 1915
222nd 'Tottenham' 33rd Division from July 1915
223rd 'Leeds' 31st Division from January 1915
224th 40th Division from November 1915. Raised in Doncaster
225th 'Stockton-on-Tees' 39th Division from November 1915. Raised in Marton Hall, Yorkshire
226th 'Tottenham'

33rd Division from July 1915 then in December 1915 to 2nd Division

227th 'Stockton-on-Tees' 39th Division from November 1915. Raised in Marton Hall, Yorkshire
228th 'Barnsley' 41st Division from September 1915
229th 40th Division from November 1915. Raised in Doncaster
231st 40th Division from November 1915. Raised in Doncaster
233rd 'Ripon' 41st Division from September 1915
234th 'Stockton-on-Tees' 39th Division from November 1915. Raised in Marton Hall, Yorkshire
237th 'Reading' 41st Division from September 1915

Field Companies of the Territorial Force

Some of the pre-war TF Field Companies were allotted early in the war to serve with the regular Divisions, as shown above. The following tables lists the allocation to Divisions of the remaining First-Line TF Companies and the Second- and sometimes Third-line units that were created from them. The Companies were numbered in 1917.

Field Company Allocation to Divisions Remarks
400th 51st (Highland) Division. 1st (Highland)
402nd 64th (2nd Highland) Division 1/3rd (Highland)
403rd 64th (2nd Highland) Division 2/1st (Highland)
404th 51st (Highland) Division. 2/2nd (Highland)
405th 64th (2nd Highland) Division 3/2nd (Highland)
406th 4th Division from May 1916. 1st (Renfrew)
411th 65th (2nd Lowland) Division 1/3rd (Lowland)
412th 52nd (Lowland) Division from March 1915. 2/1st (Lowland)
413rd 52nd (Lowland) Division from March 1915. 2/2nd (Lowland)
414th 65th (2nd Lowland) Division 3/1st (Lowland)
415th 65th (2nd Lowland) Division 3/2nd (Lowland)
416th Moved in December 1915 to Egypt, and there attached as Army Troops. Moved to France and joined 56th (London) Division in May 16. 1st (Edinburgh). Originally a Fortress Company.
419th 55th (West Lancashire) Division but sent independently to France 3 January 1915 and placed under 4th Division. Had a short period 18-28 April 1915 under 48th (South Midland) Division before returning to 55th Division when it was reformed on 28 February 1916. 1st (West Lancashire)
420th 55th (West Lancashire) Division to June 1915. Moved to Gallipoli then 42nd (East Lancashire) Division from August 1915. In May 1916 joined a Composite Brigade at Mudros. Moved to Salonika June 1917, being attached as Army Troops. 2nd (West Lancashire)
421st 57th (2nd West Lancashire) Division. 1/3rd (West Lancs)
422nd

57th (2nd West Lancashire) Division then January 1916 to 55th (West Lancashire) Division.

2/1st (West Lancs)
423rd 57th (2nd West Lancashire) Division then January 1916 to 55th (West Lancashire) Division.  
427th 42nd (East Lancashire) Division. 1st (East Lancs)
428th 42nd (East Lancashire) Division. 2nd (East Lancs)
429th 42nd (East Lancashire) Division from July 1916. 3rd (East Lancs)
430th

66th (2nd East Lancashire) Division.

2/1st East Lancs
431st 66th (2nd East Lancashire) Division.
2/2nd East Lancs
432nd 66th (2nd East Lancashire) Division. 2/3rd East Lancs
436th 53rd Division Aug 14 - 1st (Welsh)
437th

Left UK Oct 15, to Gallipoli. Attached as IX Corps Troops Oct 15 - Dec 15 then 53rd Division

2/1st (Welsh)
439th 53rd Division Sep14 - Apr 18 then 74th Division 2/1st (Cheshire)
447th 50th Division Aug 14 - 2nd (Northumbrian)
448th 63rd Division Jan 15 - Sep 15 then 15th (Indian) Division 1/3rd (Northumbrian)
449th 28th Division July 15 - 2/1st (Northumbrian)
450th 63rd Division Jan 15 - Sep 15 then 15th (Indian) Division 2/2nd (Northumbrian)
451st 63rd Division Jan 15 - Sep 15 then 15th (Indian) Division 3/1st (Northumbrian)
456th 49th Division Aug 14 - 2nd (West Riding). Formed Sheffield.
457th 62nd Division Jun 15- 1/3rd (West Riding)
458th Formed in Sep 14, then attached to 62nd Division until June 15 when moved to 49th Division, where it stayed to 2/1st (West Riding)
459th Formed in Sep 14, then attached to 62nd Division until Oct 15 when moved to 6th Division, where it stayed to 2/2nd (West Riding)
460th 62nd Division Jun 15- 2/3rd (West Riding)
461st 62nd Division Mar 15- 3/1st (West Riding)
466th 46th Division Aug 14- 2nd (North Midland). Formed in Cannock.
467th 59th Division Early 1916 - 1/3rd (North Midland)
468th 46th Division Aug 14-. Attached GHQ Mar to Jul 1915. 2/1st (North Midland)
469th 59th Division Feb 15 - 2/2nd (North Midland)
470th 59th Division Feb 15 - 3/1st (North Midland)
475th 48th Division Aug 14 - 2nd (South Midland) Formed Bristol.
476th 61st Division Nov 15 - 1/3rd (South Midland)
477th 48th Division Jun 15 - 2/1st (South Midland) Formed Sep 1914.
478th 61st Division Jan 15 - 2/2nd (South Midland).
479th 61st Division Jan 15 - 3/1st (South Midland).
484th 54th Division Aug 14 - 2nd (East Anglian)
486th 54th Division Sep 14 - 2/1st (East Anglian)
492nd 67th Division to Oct 17 then 71st Division to Feb 18, then to North Russia  
495th

Left UK for Gallipoli. Attached 2nd Mounted Division Oct 15 - July 16 then 54th Division. Moved to 75th Division Apr 17, rejoining 54th Division May 18.

1st (East Kent)
496th 74th Division Apr 17 - May 17 then 75th Division 2nd (Kent)
497th 52nd Division - Feb 16 then 29th Division 3rd (Kent)
502nd 57th Division Dec 15 - 1/3rd (Wessex).
503rd 58th Division Feb 16- 2/1st (Wessex)
504th 58th Division Feb 16- 2/2nd (Wessex)
505th 57th Division Feb 16 - 2/3rd (Wessex)
506th 28th Division Oct 15 - 1/7th (Hampshire)
511th 58th Division Nov 15 - 1/5th (London)
512th 58th Division Aug 14 - Feb 16 then 56th Division 2/1st (London)
513th 58th Division Aug 14 - Feb 16 then 56th Division 2/2nd (London)
518th 47th Division Aug 14 - 4th (London) Formed Chelsea.
519th 60th Division Apr 15 - 3/3rd (London)
520th

60th Division Oct 14 - Mar 15 then 47th Division Jun 15 -

2/3rd (London) Formed Oct 1914.

521st 60th Division Oct 14 - 2/4th (London) Formed Sep/Oct 1914.
522nd 60th Division Apr 15 - Jul 18 then to 7th (Indian) Division 1/6th (London).
526th 4th Division Sep 15 - 1st (Durham)
527th 5th Division Sep 15 - 2nd (Durham)
528th 51st Division Sep 14 - Jan 16 then 7th Division 3rd (Durham)
529th 3rd Division Sep 15- 1st (East Riding)
546th 73rd Division Nov 16- Mar 18 then to France, with Third Army from 7 July; Fourth Army 11 Nov; disbanded 4 June 1919 1/6th Kent Fortress Coy.
547th 73rd Division Nov 16- Mar 18 then to France, with Third Army from 7 July; disbanded 4 June 1919 1/7th Kent Fortress Coy.
548th

71st Division Nov 16- Mar 18 then to North Russia

2/1st Dundee Fortress Coy.

549th 71st Division Nov 16- Mar 18 then to Western Front 2/3rd Lancs Fortress Coy.
645th 71st Division Nov 16- Oct 17 then 67th Division 6th Provisional Field Coy
648th 73rd Division Nov 16- Mar 18 then to France, with Fourth Army from 7 July; disbanded 1 May 1919 9th Provisional Field Coy.

Field Companies raised for the Royal Naval Division

Field Company Allocation to Divisions
247th 63rd (Royal Naval) Division from March 1915. Originally No 1 Company, RND
248th 63rd (Royal Naval) Division from March 1915. Originally No 2 Company, RND
249th 63rd (Royal Naval) Division from March 1915. Originally No 3 Company, RND