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D-Day Regiments
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The Royal Army Service CorpsThe Royal Army Service Corps

Formed as the Army Service Corps in 1869 that branch of the British Army which handles transport can trace its roots to the appointment of a Waggon-Master-General way back in the Sixteenth Century. The Corps' interest in mechanical vehicles dates from 1903 when it took over responsibility for such things from the Royal Engineers. During the First World War the ASC provided the drivers for the first tanks and it was as a result of outstanding work in that conflict that it was awarded 'Royal' status in November 1918.

Tank Museum photo No. 3058/D/2
Tank Museum photo No. 3058/D/2

The RASC employed DUKWs for the first time during the Sicilian Landings in July 1943 and the amphibians later distinguished themselves running a ferry service across the Straits of Messina when the Allies crossed over to Italy.

Click to enlarge
Technical Manual (click for larger image - 30Kb)

In Britain the RASC raised 11 DUKW companies for the D-Day landings. Each company operated 75 DUKWs at any one time but actually had 100 vehicles on strength so that 25 were always under maintenance. Regular immersion in seawater demanded constant cleaning and lubrication.

Tank Museum photo No. 3058/D/5
Tank Museum photo No. 3058/D/5 (click on picture for larger image 25kb)

DUKWs continued to serve throughout the north west Europe campaign and they are seen here crossing the Rhine in March 1945. They also saw service in Italy and indeed Burma through to the end of hostilities.

The Royal Army Service Corps became the Royal Corps of Transport in 1965 and the Royal Logistic Corps in 1993. The Royal Logistic Corps Museum is at Deepcut, Camberley, Surrey.
The Museum of Army Transport at Beverley is closed at present.


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