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 Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport

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Steve.L
Sgt
Sgt


Number of posts: 21
Age: 69
Localisation: France
Cap Badge: R. Signals
Places Served: Birgelin, Langeleben, Singapore, Borneo,Brunei
Registration date: 2011-06-10

PostSubject: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   11/6/2011, 07:24

R.E. operated a number of Inland Water Transport Units during WW2 using many requisitioned and some purpose built small tugs. I know they were used in the Middle East Theatre, especially in the Gulf and operating out of Iraq. They were also used in N. W. Europe from D Day onwards. I have found brief references to these units, particularly 940 and 941 (IWT) Companies.

I have been researching the particular actions/operations of these units but found very little information and only one survivor to date.

If anyone has any information on these units or can point me at any documentation I would be very grateful. As a unit that, apparently, operated in small detachments and employed many Thames Lightermen for War Service only there does not appear to have been any attempt to produce a unit history.
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JPW
Maj Gen
Maj Gen


Number of posts: 797
Age: 73
Localisation: Berkshire
Cap Badge: REME
Places Served: Rotenburg Ploen Lippstadt Hamm Wetter Minden Munster Bielefeldt Dusseldorf
Registration date: 2008-11-09

PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   11/6/2011, 09:21

Steve L

A very interesting query

Another Steve and I are researching the early days of BAOR. Judging by what you say there could well hav been a presence in the captured German ports such as Hamburg, Kiel and Wilhelmshaven in Summer 45

Will keep an eye out for mention of Sapper Inland Water Transport units in any ORBAT we come across
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Steve.L
Sgt
Sgt


Number of posts: 21
Age: 69
Localisation: France
Cap Badge: R. Signals
Places Served: Birgelin, Langeleben, Singapore, Borneo,Brunei
Registration date: 2011-06-10

PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   11/6/2011, 10:19

Hi, JPW,

I believe they were used in towing some of the Mulberry and PLUTO components and then used in River Clearance in France. There was a presence in Antwerp helping with the clearance and getting the port open for Allied use and also on the Rhine. They were definitely at Duisburg too after the end of hostilities but then they just seem to have disappeared although I did find one tentative reference to clearing the Mitteland Canal in late 1945.

A colleague of mine lost his father in September 1945 with 941 (IWT) Coy. He is buried in the Reichwald C.W.G.C. cemetery, hence the research. He knows most of the details of his father's death but very little about the unit and its operations in Europe. Earlier service in M.East is better documented.

Thank you very much for your assistance and good luck with your research.
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PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   11/6/2011, 10:55

I googled it Steve,and found a few references.Probably the same as you have?
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steve
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Number of posts: 646
Age: 65
Localisation: near Cuxhaven
Cap Badge: Royal Signals + Royal Engineers
Places Served: Verden-Aller + Willich + Iserlohn + Hameln
Registration date: 2010-02-14

PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   11/6/2011, 13:07

Steve L
This should help if not already found
http://www.instre.org/pages/information/publications/current-publications/corps-history-cd-rom.php
Regards
Steve
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Teabag
Maj Gen
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Number of posts: 960
Age: 64
Localisation: Merseyside
Cap Badge: Royal Signals
Places Served: Wildenrath Detmold
Registration date: 2008-10-30

PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   11/6/2011, 16:39

Steve.L wrote:
Hi, JPW,

I believe they were used in towing some of the Mulberry and PLUTO components and then used in River Clearance in France. There was a presence in Antwerp helping with the clearance and getting the port open for Allied use and also on the Rhine. They were definitely at Duisburg too after the end of hostilities but then they just seem to have disappeared although I did find one tentative reference to clearing the Mitteland Canal in late 1945.

A colleague of mine lost his father in September 1945 with 941 (IWT) Coy. He is buried in the Reichwald C.W.G.C. cemetery, hence the research. He knows most of the details of his father's death but very little about the unit and its operations in Europe. Earlier service in M.East is better documented.

Thank you very much for your assistance and good luck with your research.

After the war, so was it an accident? You were a Spec Op I presume?
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Steve.L
Sgt
Sgt


Number of posts: 21
Age: 69
Localisation: France
Cap Badge: R. Signals
Places Served: Birgelin, Langeleben, Singapore, Borneo,Brunei
Registration date: 2011-06-10

PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   12/6/2011, 07:03

Gordon, Steve,

Many thanks. I will follow up you suggestions.

Teabag,

Yes the 'accident' was post war at Duisburg. The circumstances were a total mystery but recently the Army Personnel Centre, Glasgow came up with some documentation which clarified the matter somewhat.

I was a Spec Op/ OP(E.W.) 1962-77 mainly in B.A.O.R.
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Teabag
Maj Gen
Maj Gen


Number of posts: 960
Age: 64
Localisation: Merseyside
Cap Badge: Royal Signals
Places Served: Wildenrath Detmold
Registration date: 2008-10-30

PostSubject: Re: Royal Engineers: Inland Water Transport   12/6/2011, 07:42

Steve.L wrote:
Gordon, Steve,

Many thanks. I will follow up you suggestions.

Teabag,

Yes the 'accident' was post war at Duisburg. The circumstances were a total mystery but recently the Army Personnel Centre, Glasgow came up with some documentation which clarified the matter somewhat.

I was a Spec Op/ OP(E.W.) 1962-77 mainly in B.A.O.R.

Probably know my brother then. He did thirty plus years as a Spec Op. 13, 9 and a stint at 14.

My grandfathers brother also died after the first war. He drowned in a canal in France in 1919. I have copies of the court of enquiry papers but it is still a mystery how it happened.
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