1st Battalion

The Argyll and Sutherland



Short History


 1945 to 1954

 All photographs are the property of RHQ Argylls and may not be reproduced or copied without permission from RHQ Argylls.



1st Bn Italy: End of World War 2 saw the battalion serving in Italy. 27 June the battalion sailed from Naples for UK and moved into Osgodby Camp, Lincolnshire. 5th August WO1 (RSM) P McPhillips took over as RSM from WO1 (RSM) J Stewart. 18th August the Colonel of the Regiment Maj-Gen G Thorpe CB, DSO, MC returned the colours to the Battalion. 19 August Lt Col R H L Webb MC took over as CO from  Lt Col F C C Graham DSO. 30th Sept battalion joined 6th Airlanding Bde, 6th Airborne Division, replacing 2nd Gordons. 1st October Maj-Gen G.H.A. MacMillan C.B., C.B.E., D.S.O., M.C., was appointed Colonel of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. 3rd October battalion started to reorganise on an Air Landing Battalion on War Establishment. 11th Oct. advance party of 6 officers and 43 ORs. embarked on S.S Cameronian for Palestine.  27th Oct. battalion sailed from Liverpool on S.S. Ascania for Palestine. 6th Nov. bn disembarked at Haifa, strength of 56 officers and 938 O.Rs. and moved to Camp 21, six miles from Tulkarm. Battalion began Internal Security Duties, 14th November Jewish disturbances in Tel Aviv, 25th Nov. attack on coastguard stations of Givat Olga and Sidna Ali. 26th Nov. battalion with Palestine Police cordoned and checked village of Givat Hayim.

2nd BnNorth West Europe: Moved to Travemunde, Germany.


1st Bn - Camp 21, six miles from Tulkarm, Palestine : 10th Feb. battalion assisted in the cordoning and searching of Hadera. 26th Feb terrorist attack on aerodromes, imposition of a curfew. 30th March bn relieved 2 Royal Warwick’s in Jerusalem, ‘HQ’, ‘B’, ‘D’ and half of ‘S’ Company in the Hospice of Notre Dame de France, opposite the new gate to the old city, with ‘A’, ‘C’ and half  ‘S’ in the Syrian Orphanage in the west of the city.  15th April 6th Airlanding Bde renamed 31st Independent Infantry Bde. 3rd May Arab Demonstration round the Damascus Gate, battalion vehicle park stoned. 14th May terrorists attempted to capture a battalion jeep at Petah Tiqva. 22nd July Secretariat in the King David Hotel blown up, rigorous security measures imposed. 24th Oct. three road blocks manned by the battalion were blown up by terrorists 2 O.Rs. killed (Cpl. Alcorn and Pte. Buchanan) and 1 officer and 6 O.Rs. wounded. 28 Oct Lt Col R H L Webb MC handed over to Major A. D. R. G. Wilson, M.B.E as Temp CO. 30th Nov. part of Jerusalem railway station blown up by terrorists. Nov. 31st Independent Infantry Bde was disbanded; bn came under command 9th Infantry Bde. 7th Dec. battalion arrived in Egypt and moved into a tented camp at Moascar, battalion now came under command 8th Infantry Bde.

2nd Bn - Travemunde, Germany: March moved to Stade, near Hamburg, Germany. Later moved to Buxtehude Naval Barracks. June moved to Bottrop (BHQ, HQ, B and D Coys) and Dinslaken (A, C and Sp Coys). By end of year bn concentrated at Wesel. Dec moved to Buchanan Castle, Drymen, Scotland.


1st Bn – Moascar, Egypt : 12 Jan Lt Col E A F Macpherson MC took over as CO. 20th Jan. battalion returned to Palestine and moved into a tented camp at Quastina, 25 miles north of Gaza. 14th April battalion returned to Jerusalem and was accommodated at Alamein Camp. 27th Sept. bn. moved to Sarafand. 29th Sept. escort duties for Arab and Jewish convoys commenced. 8th Dec. convoys fired on near Jaffa-Tel Aviv border, 1 O.R. killed (Pte. Kane) and 1 wounded (Pte. Shaw).

2nd Bn - Buchanan Castle, Drymen, Scotland: 1st March battalion placed into suspended animation.


Sarafand, Palestine: 3rd Feb Bn moved to Lydda Domestic Camp and took over from 1 KOSB, came under command of 3rd Infantry Bde. 5th Feb. ‘B’ and ‘D’ companies moved into Manshiya on Jaffa-Tel Aviv border. 19 Feb. ‘B’ and ‘D’ companies relieved by 2 Royal Lincolns, battalion now responsible for patrolling Ramle-Jaffa Road. 1 March 4/7 Dragoon Guards take over patrolling Ramle-Jaffa Road, battalion take over static guard duties. 10th March Lt-Col G L Neilson DSO assumed command from Lt-Col E.A.F. MacPherson M.C. 16th March ‘A’ and ‘C’ moved to Manshiya. 28th April ‘B’ company moved into Jaffa in support of two companies of R.I.F. 29 April battalion less ‘A’ and ‘C’ companies occupied Jaffa, Jews occupied buildings close to ‘B’ Company’s position and opened fire on them. 1st May Jews asked for and obtained a cease fire. 13th May orders issued for the evacuation of Palestine. 14th May bn. evacuated Jaffa. 15th May 6.30 a.m. bn. left Lydda, 7.30. p.m. bn. crossed frontier into Egypt. 16th May bn. at Rafah. 17th May bn. crossed the Sinai Desert and reached the Suez Canal at 7 p.m. 18th May moved into camp at El Tahag, west of the Suez Canal, Egypt. 19th July bn. moved from El Tahag via Quassassin Railway Station to 156 Transit Camp (Port Said). 25 July bn. boarded HMT “Samaria”. 7th Aug landed at Liverpool and went straight on leave. 2nd Sept WO1 (RSM) SJ Morrison MBE, MM took over as RSM from WO1 (RSM) P McPhillips. 3 Sept Lt-Col E.A.F. MacPherson took over as CO from Lt Col G L Neilson DSO. 6th Sept all ranks returned from leave to Sobraon Bks, Colchester.  30th Oct 1st and 2nd A and SH amalgamation parade held at Colchester. 16th Dec bn. dispersed on leave till 15th Jan. 1949.


Sobraon Bks, Colchester. 20 Jan Field Marshal Slim inspected the Bn. 21 Jan Field Marshal Wavell inspected the Bn. 2-3rd March Bn repaired sea wall on coast near Maldon, Essex (Op Flood). 1 to 27 April Bn training at Stanford Training area. 3rd June Princess Elizabeth visited the battalion in Colchester. 4 June Lt-Col G L Neilson DSO assumed command from Lt-Col E.A.F. MacPherson M.C. 12th June Bn sailed from Southampton on the HMT “Empire Trooper” via Port Said, Aden, Colombo and Singapore for Hong Kong (were meant to have sailed on the 9th but were delayed). 18th July battalion arrived in Hong Kong and moved into Stanley Fort, took over barracks from 1 Buffs. Sept moved to Tam Mi Camp, New Territories. 7 Sept Typhoon struck Tam Mi camp. Sept Sp Coy 1 A and SH at Lo Wu camp. 25 Oct Balaklava Day, Bn parade followed by a programme of sports. 6 Nov Remembrance service. Dec part 27th Infantry Bde – Hong Kong.  


Tam-mi Camp, New Territories, Hong Kong - 27th Infantry Bde. Jan moved from Tam-mi Camp (handed over to 1 KOSB) to Norwegian Farm Camp (shared camp with 1 Leicesters). Mid Feb Ex ‘Alabaster’ - Bn was enemy for Marine Commando Brigade. 14 March WO1 S J Morrison MBE, MM handed over as RSM. 17 March Bn took part as the Div marched passed the Governor “Sir Alexander Grantham” in the largest ceremonial parade in the history of Hong Kong. Friday 31 Mar Bn Highland Games. 2 June WO1 (RSM) 'Paddy' Boyde MBE, DCM took over as RSM. June because on the departure of the Commando and Gurkha Brigades, 1 A and SH moved from Norwegian Farm Camp to Fanling, the rifle coys were at Dodswell Ridge and Bn HQ at Ho Tung House with Support Coy at Dills Corner. Saturday 19 Aug bn warned for move to Korea. 25 Aug Bn left Hong Kong (Holt’s wharf) on HMS Ceylon for Korea. 28 Aug 1 A and SH (from HMS Ceylon) and 1 Middlesex (from HMS Unicorn) land at Pusan, Korea. 5 Sept 27 Inf Brig took over a portion of line along the River Naktong south-west of Taegu. 5 Sept Bn went into first action in Korea. 6 Sept Capt. Buchanan led a patrol of Argylls to Pt 228, he was wounded and ordered his men to leave him behind, his body was found a few months later. 21/22 Sept 27 Bde crossed the Naktong river. 22/23 Bn occupy hill 282. 23 Sept Bn bombed by US planes on Hill 282, Major Kenneth Muir won VC. 27 Sept 27 Bde moved to the outskirts of Songju. 6 Oct 27 Bde flew from Taegu airfield to Kimpo, near Seoul, vehicles followed by road. By 11 Oct 27 Bde had advanced to Kaesong, where it came under command 1 US Cav Div. 15 Oct 27 Bde received instructions to advance up the Sariwon-Pyongyang road to Sariwon. 17 Oct Argylls entered Sariwon. 17/18 Oct 27 Bde spent night in Sariwon before moving on. 20 Oct South Korean troops enter Pyongyang, a little later 27 Bde enter the town. 21 Oct 27 Bde crossed the River Taedong at Pyongyang. 23 Oct 27 Bde were at Pakchon. 30 Oct Argylls  entered Chongju. 30 Oct 27 Bde went into reserve. I Nov Bn withdrew to Pakchon , then moved to Taechon. 3 Nov 27 Bde withdrew from Taechon to a position north of the Chongchon River covering Sinanju. 5-27 Nov 27 Bde was at Pakchon. 27 Nov 27 Bde was withdrawn south of the Chongchon and moved to Kunu-Ri where it came under the command of IX US Corps. 28 Nov 27 Bde set out for Suchon. 2-3 Dec 27 Bde was moving from Chasan to Pyongyang covering the withdrawal of American troops. 4 Dec 27 and 29 Brigades were at Pyongyang. 4 Dec 27 Bde withdrew 120 miles south to Uijonbu, 15 miles south of Seoul. 31 Dec Bn was encamped at Uijongbu about 12 miles north of Seoul, Bn celebrated new year there.  


Uijongbu about 12 miles north of Seoul, Korea - 27th Infantry Bde. 1 Jan 0630hrs 1 A and SH was warned to standby to move in 1 hour, 27 Brigade took up positions 6 miles north of Uijongbu by 1300hrs and then act as rearguard for the 6th ROK Div. 3-4 Jan 27 Brig occupied a defensive position round Seoul to cover the retirement of the 1st US Cav Div and 24th US Div. C Coy protected the Al Jolsen bridge and after midnight 3-4 Jan the coy withdrew and the bridge was blown. 4 Jan Seoul was evacuated, D Coy A and SH covered the bridge across the Han until the rest of the brigade had crossed, then that bridge was blown at 1000hrs. 6 Jan 27th Infantry Brigade arrived at Changhowon-Ni. 6 Jan Second retreat south ended, UN forces took up defensive positions, 29th Infantry Brigade was on the extreme left of the 8th Army’s line and 27th Infantry Brigade at Changhowon-Ni. 27 Jan 27th Infantry Brigade concentrated at Changhowon-Ni. 4 Feb Bn were moved forward to Yoju. 14 Feb 27th Infantry Brigade came under command of 2nd US Div and received orders to cross the Han river at Yoju at once and advance north to relieve the 23rd US RCT and the French Bn who had cut off in the Chipyong-Ni area, some 10 miles north of Yoju. 17 Feb – 13 Mar 27th Infantry Brigade were advancing north. 13 Mar 27th Infantry Brigade was relieved by the 5th US Cav Regt and concentrated in a river bed near Nolbunyo-Ni, about 15 miles north of Yoja. 27 Brig remained at Nolbunyo-Ni resting and refitting under IX Corps until 24 Mar. 25 Mar 27 Brig moved 50 miles by vehicle to Hyon-Ri, where it came under command of 24 US Div. Late Mar 27 Brig took over from 19th US RCT in the front line just north of Hyon-Ri and began advancing up the Kapyong road till the 16th April. 19 April 27 Brig was relieved by 19th Regiment of 6 ROK Div and returned to the Kapyong area in IX Corps Reserve. Sun 22 April 27 Commonwealth Brigade Church parade. 27 Brig was under IX US Corps in support of the 6 ROK Div in the area of Chonghon-Ni. 23 April 1 KOSB arrived in Korea, received some equipment from 1 A and SH, 1 KOSB replaced Bn in 27 Brigade. 24 April Bn sailed from Inchon on the USS Montrose and arrived on Sunday 28 Apr in Hong Kong and moved back to the same barracks at Fanling Camp with HQ Coy at Dodeswell Ridge, D Coy at Ho Tung House and Ass Pnr at Fan Gardens. 28 July Lt Col Neilson DSO hands over as CO 1 A and SH, Maj Snowball took over as temporary CO. 11 Oct Lt Col J C Church took over as CO 1 A and SH. 18 Oct 1 A and SH McEwan Cup, B Coy winners. 25 Oct Bn moved into Queens Hill Camp, opposite the Middlesex camp, took over from 1st Bn South Staffordshire Regt who returned to UK.


Queens Hill Camp, New Territories, Hong Kong. 3rd Feb Bn church parade in Queens Hill camp to commemorate the raising of the regiment. Fri 15th Feb Bn took part in a Brigade Memorial Service to his Majesty King George VI. 27 April Bn provided Guard of Honour to represent the army at the Inter Services Anzac Day parade. 5 June 1 A and SH fired the Feu de Joie at the Queens Birthday Parade. 25 July 1 A and SH advance party left Hong Kong on HMT Devonshire for UK.  13 Aug 1 A and SH moved out of Queens Hill camp and moved into Chatham Road Transit Camp in Kowloon, 1 Middlesex lined the road to the camp. Sun 17th Aug Bn left Hong Kong on HMT Empire Halladale, 1 Middlesex band played on the dock. The boat stopped at Singapore, Colombo, Aden, Port Said and Gibraltar. 17 Sept Empire Halladale stops at Gibraltar. 23 Sept 1 A and SH sailed up Firth of Clyde and docked at King George V dock. Bn on leave for six weeks. Early Nov Bn moved into Redford Bks, Edinburgh. 16 Nov Bn paraded for an Armistice Day Service at Colinton Parish Church.  19th Nov Bn marched through Stirling.




Redford Bks, Edinburgh. 4th Jan Bn back from leave after its first Xmas at home since 1949. 3rd Feb McEwan Cup. 10th Feb the Bn held a parade to mark the 159th anniversary of the raising of the Regt. March 1 A and SH provided extras for the making of the film Rob Roy. 8 April 1 A and SH received the freedom of Dunoon. 6 June Bn Highland Games. Fri 26 June Queen presented new colours to the 1 A and SH at Holyroodhouse. 28 July Guard of Honour was provided by HQ Coy 1 A and SH for the visit of Rear Admiral Green of the US Navy to Scottish Command. July B Coy provided a Guard of Honour for Queen Victoria at the White City Searchlight Tattoo (guard - Capt Imlah, Sgts Young and Adam, Cpl Gillies and 21 Ors). Autumn 1st Bn A and SH provided Ballater Guard. 9th Oct Bn left Edinburgh from Gorgie Station and moved to Devonport, Plymouth. 10th Oct 1st Bn A and SH sailed from Plymouth on the aircraft carrier HMS Implacable to British Guiana to take over from 1st Bn Royal Welsh Fusiliers. 17 Oct The Implacable anchored off Port of Said, Trinidad. 1st Bn A and SH then transhipped to the Canadian freighter “Sunjarv”. 18th Oct A and B Coys 1 A and SH went aboard the frigate Bigbury Bay and sailed to British Guiana. The rest of the 1 A and SH sailed on the Sunjarv. 21 Oct HMS Bigbury Bay docked in Georgetown and A Coy moved immediately to New Amsterdam. The rest of the 1 A and SH steamed up the Demerara river on the Sunjarv and docked at Atkinson Field where it remained. C Coy stayed at Georgetown and stayed at two hotels. 15 Dec Lt Col J C Church handed over as CO. 



British Guiana. 19 Jan 1 A and SH reorganised in British Guiana, D Coy moved to New Amsterdam to relieve A Coy who went to the new barracks in Georgetown, C Coy moved to Atkinson Field. 8 Feb 25 wives and 36 children (1st Party) arrived in Georgetown by air. 24 Feb 27 wives and 30 children arrived by air. 12 Mar Lt Col B A Pearson DSO took over command of 1 A and SH. 21 August WO1 (RSM) T J Collett MM took over as RSM from WO1 (RSM) 'Paddy' Boyde MBE, DCM. 28 Sept battalion advance party arrived at Stirling Castle from British Guiana. October battalion left British Guiana for UK. 2nd Nov arrived at Southampton, moved overnight by 2 trains to Scotland, stopped for 20 minutes at Edinburgh. 3rd Nov the Bn moved into Pinefield Camp, Elgin and went on two months leave.


1955 to 1964


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Updated: 16 March 2015