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Formation patch 2nd Canadian Corps 1st and 2nd AGRA

wool red on blue


2nd Canadian Corps (also seen rendered as 2nd Canadian Corps) was a corps sized formation created in 1943 in England.

The headquarters of 2nd Canadian Corps (Serial 1701) was authorized to mobilize under General Order 281/1943, effective 14 Jan 1943.

Corps Headquarters moved to Normandy on 1 Jul 1944, with the 2nd Canadian Division coming under command upon their arrival at the end of the first week of July in the Carpiquet area, with 3rd Canadian Division also coming under command after the crossing of the Orne River. 2nd Canadian Corps in turn came under command of the 2nd British Army.


Royal Canadian Artillery Headquarters


The artillery headquarters (Headquarters RCA 2nd Canadian Corps) stood up near Cobham, Surrey the same month. In Feb 1943, with 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division under command the HQ began training schemes. Exercise SPARTAN saw the RCA headquarters exercising in Mar 1943 with 2nd Counter Battery Officers Staff, 6th Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment (RCA), 6th Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment (British), 99th Anti-Tank Regiment (British) and 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division under command. In Mar and Apr other schemes followed with units of the 4th and 5th divisional artilleries under command at Alfriston, Westdown and Sennybridge. Another exercise in April in the northern UK involved 2nd Canadian Army Group, Royal Artillery (AGRA), 2nd Counter Battery Officers, 6th Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment and 1st Canadian Survey Regiment.


In Jun 1943, the 4th and 5th Canadian (Armoured) Divisions carried out firing practice at Alfriston and anti-tank firing at the Lydd ranges. The 6th LAA visited St. Agnes, Cornwall practice camp.


In Jul 1943, 11th Field Regiment fired at the Larkhill ranges while 6th LAA Regiment attended the battle school at Penny Bont, Wales. Two self-propelled regiments (the 19th and 23rd Field) arrived from Canada and also came under command of 2nd Canadian Corps.


Oct 1943 saw the artillery headquarters move to the Three Bridges area; 6th Anti-Tank Regiment came under command on the 1st after arrival from Canada. On 14 Oct 1943, 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division passed to the control of 1st Canadian Corps in preparation for the move to the Mediterranean. They were replaced in the corps artillery by the artillery of 2nd Canadian Infantry Division. The 19th Field went under command of the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division. The 5th and 4th divisional artilleries exercised under command of 2nd Canadian Corps artillery headquarters, along with 5th Medium Regiment, RCA and 11th Army Field Regiment, RCA.


In Nov 1943, sub-units of 6th LAA Regiment assumed duty on Air Defence of Great Britain (ADGB) sites. 660 Air Observation Post Squadron of the RAF came under command, 19th Army Field Regiment returned under command temporarily, and 23rd Field Regiment (Self Propelled) came under command of 4th Canadian (Armoured) Division. The 2nd and 4th divisional artilleries continued to train with corps artillery units and in December, 2nd Canadian Survey Regiment came under command of the corps artillery.


In Apr 1944, headquarters moved to Eastling Wood, Kent, north of Dover, to wait during May and Jun for the chance to move to Normandy. The 3rd Canadian Infantry Division and 2nd Canadian Armoured Brigade were temporarily assigned to I British Corps for the assault and lodgement phase of Operation OVERLORD. On 29 Jun, headquarters was moved from Dover to a marshalling area in northeast London, and on 30 Jun the first personnel boarded Liberty ships. On 1 Jul a convoy carrying personnel of II Canadian Corps artillery headquarters sailed for France, deploying to the village of Camilly on arrival. Corps troops and the 2nd Canadian AGRA were located nearby.


The headquarters moved near Lasson with 2nd Canadian AGRA deployed in support of the 2nd and 3rd Canadian Divisions, and flights of 660 AOP Sqn RAF began to arrive. A towed battery of 6th Anti-Tank Regiment was placed under each division and 2nd Canadian Survey Regiment also deployed under the control of the Corps Commander, Royal Artillery of 2nd Canadian Corps.

2nd Canadian Corps 1st and 2nd AGRA formation flash

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  • 2nd Canadian Corps 1st and 2nd AGRA formation flash
  • 2nd Canadian Corps 1st and 2nd AGRA formation flash