A collection of stories from 132 Div Loc Bty, part of 3 Div Artillery alongside 2/15 Fd Regt and 10 Mdm Regt. The DivLoc Bty was disbanded prior to the amalgamation of the regiments.
- 132 Div Loc with 3″ Mortars in 1968
I came across a letter to the then Cascabel editor, Alan Halbish, from Capt Percy Cooper with photos from 132 Div Loc Bty at Puckapunyal in 1968. The relevant sections of the letter and photos are shown below.
Dear Mr Halbish,
Hearty congratulations on the latest issue of Cascabel. It truly is a treasure chest of reading and the sight of the photos of mortar in the Chapel Street Drill Hall recalled memories of the 3 inch mortar of the 132 Div Loc Bty at Puckapunyal in 1968.
The first one shows Sergeant (later W.O.) Phil Baines standing with Bdr Bowman, behind him is Capt Graham Taylor, REgular Army Adjutant of 15 Fd Regt, and Sgt Colin Swindells kneeling at the right of the tube. Gunner kneeling at left front is not known.
Photo two shows the group checking bomb fuzes. L to R, Sgt Colin Swindells, unknown, at rear with binoculars, Capt Graham Taylor, Gnr Blandy, Sgt Phil Baines and Bdr Bowman.
Photo 3 shows Capt Percy Cooper who, in accordance with standard practice is the officer who fires the first few bombs in a long unused tube. That way, if a disaster occurs the Army have not lost something important, like a trainer mortar crew.
Photo 4 is of Sgt (later WO) Phil Baines getting a 3D view of air photos with a spectroscope outside the AIO office.
The Cascabel article referred to involves two photos in Cascabel 102 on p8 showing the newly arrived 81mm mortars for 2/10 Field Regiment as they transitioned from guns to mortars.
Those around 2/15 Fd Regt, and specifically 23 Bty, will remember Col Swindells. When 132 Div Loc Bty was wound down, Col came to Baxter as the BQMS. Anyone who met Col would remember him.