106 Regt RA wheel out the big guns for 800th Lord Mayor’s Show
Saturday 14 November 2015 marked the 800th London Lord Mayors Show and to mark this 106 (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery in conjunction with The Great Dorset Steam Fair and Sussex Steam Restorations presented a poignant reminder of the size and mechanisation of British Artillery by 1915/16.
Following last year’s theme which marked the start of the First World War, any thoughts that the war would be over by Christmas were dashed by 1915 as the War descended into Trench Warfare. The regiment presented a superbly restored McLaren Steam Traction Engine owned and restored by Neil Gough of West Sussex; built in 1912 to War Department specifications, the engine was pulling a replica BL 8 inch Howitzer Mk I. Developed throughout 1915 this type of ‘new’ heavy artillery or “Siege Artillery” was operated by the Royal Garrison Artillery and was to see action at The Battle of the Somme in July 1916. There are no remaining original examples of this type of Gun in the UK to remind us of the size and industrialisation of warfare by 1915, so this replica was created by The Great Dorset Steam Fair for their WW1 commemorations last year and was kindly on loan to the regiment for the Show and accompanied by supporters in period costume. The Steam Fair are holding WW1 Commemorative Events throughout the centenary period, including the creation of a Trench Network for visitors to experience; the dates for next year’s Steam Fair are 31 Aug – 04 Sept 2016 at Tarrent Hinton, Dorset.
Bringing the history of the Royal Artillery “bang up-to-date” the maroon bereted Reserve Soldiers from 265 (Home Counties) Air Assault Battery based at Grove Park marched alongside, including a number of ex-Ghurkha soldiers who have recently transferred to 265 Bty carrying the HVM weapon system.
A great show of the diversity of the Royal Regiment of Artillery. UBIQUE!