Army Council Instruction (ACI) 2268 of 6th December 1916 authorised the formation, in London, of No.309 (Honourable Artillery Company) Siege Battery, R.G.A. from personnel of the H.A.C. with effect from 27th November 1916. It was to be equipped with four 6-inch B.L. Howitzers. After five months training in various camps in the UK the Battery landed at Le Havre on 27th April 1917 with a full complement of 137 officers and men, and a week later it went up to the line in Ypres as one of the five batteries comprised in the 88th Heavy Artillery Group. Later, in February 1918 the number of howitzers was increased to six bringing the personnel strength up to 180 all ranks.Throughout the war the total number posted to the battery was 401 of whom 5 officers and 34 other ranks were killed and six officers and 64 other ranks wounded. Thirty-one left the battery to take up commissions in other batteries. The nominal roll is provided in an appendix showing the dates of joining the battery; the names of those who died are boxed.
This book provides not only an accurate history of the battery but also a representative account of life in a howitzer battery on active service. In his War Books Cyril Falls refers to it as one of the very best of unit narratives which is high praise indeed. It certainly does bring out another side of the war, that of action and existence well behind the front line trenches, on the receiving end of enemy counter-battery fire and counter bombardments; this war was essentially a war of the guns.
LONDON GUNNERS. THE STORY OF THE H.A.C. SIEGE BATTERY IN ACTION
The record of 309 (H.A.C.) Siege Battery on the Western Front from May 1917, when it arrived in France, to the armistice. A representative account of life in a six-inch howitzer battery in and out of action.In his War Books Cyril Falls refers to it as one of the very best of unit narratives which is high praise indeed.