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PhilB

WW1 Pioneer Bns

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This extract suggests that the British WW1 Pioneer Bns were merged with RE Field Coys post war. Is that wholly or only partially true? Would the merged unit just become a larger Field Coy RE?

http://www.reubique.com/indpion.htm

"There have been Pioneers in the Indian Army from the middle of the eighteenth century almost to the present day (1933), first as Engineer troops who were mostly converted into Sappers and Miners, and then as infantry with some engineering training. In the British Army they appeared before the reign of Henry VIII and in the early part of the sixteenth century were a properly organized Corps; but they were absorbed by the Engineers in later times and did not reappear as units of that army until a Pioneer battalion was raised during the Great War of 1914-18 for every British division of infantry. After the war it was decided that these British battalions should be amalgamated with the R.E. field companies."

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Er mmm. Me thinks someone hasn't done their research here and as far as I'm aware all Service battalions which were converted to Pioneer Battalions were disbanded 1919/1920. In nearly all cases the disbanding units received a "Kings Colour" and the troops either dispersed among surviving battalions(if they wished to continue serving) or sent to dispersal camps. Certainly no Northumberland Fusilier Pioneer battalions were merged with RE units and the 1/7th Bn(a late conversion), reverted to an infantry role on the resurrection of the TA.

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The 1/8th Royal Scots who were one of the earliest Pioneer Battalions, becoming one in May 1915, were reduced to cadre strength after the war, they were then designated as an artillery formation much to the fury of the men.

A post war boxing match almost descended into a riot when a staff officer and a local politician took to the dias to sell the idea, they were heckled and the old soldiers made their feelings well known .

The 8th were reformed as an infantry unit for WW2 and served right across Northern Europe as such, they were never at any time part of the RE.

John

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I agree with John.

My Father's Brothers were members of a Pioneer Battalion,in WW1,John will correct me,regarding the Battalion constitution,in WW1.

My Father,was mortified about his Brothers Battalion's demeanour, in WW2 but he was proud of his Regiment,the Royal Scots.

George

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Er mmm. Me thinks someone hasn't done their research here and as far as I'm aware all Service battalions which were converted to Pioneer Battalions were disbanded 1919/1920. In nearly all cases the disbanding units received a "Kings Colour" and the troops either dispersed among surviving battalions(if they wished to continue serving) or sent to dispersal camps. Certainly no Northumberland Fusilier Pioneer battalions were merged with RE units and the 1/7th Bn(a late conversion), reverted to an infantry role on the resurrection of the TA.

Both the KRRC pioneer battalions (20th (BEL Pioneers) and 25th) were Service battalions raised for the duration of the conflict only and were disbanded in 1919/1920.

Cheers,

Mark

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