Glossary & Abbreviations

The Glossary & Abbreviations definitions that are given here, apply to the contents of this site only. They may have different meanings outside of this scope or in a different time frame.

2 i/cSecond in Command
A/As in A/Sgt – Acting rank. Can be paid but holder can be returned to previous rank by CO
ACCArmy Catering Corps
AdjAdjutant – Administrative officer at Regimental Headquarters
ACPOAssistant Command Post Officer – See CPO
AGPOAssistant Gun Position Officer – See GPO
BCBattery Commander – Major in charge of the battery
BdrBombardier – RA equivalant of a corporal
BKBattery Captain – Battery second in command
BLBreech loading – gun that uses bagged charges
BSMBattery Sergeant Major – Warrant Officer Class 2
BTEBritish Troops Egypt
BQMSBattery Quartermaster Sergeant – Staff Sgt, responsible for battery
stores & equipment
BtyBattery – the standard unit of the RA. A Major’s command
CMFCentral Mediterranean Forces
COCommanding Officer – Lieutenant Colonel in charge of a regiment
CODCoast Observer Detachment
CPOCommand Post Officer – Selected gun positions for each Troop & had overall control
Dvr/OpDriver/wireless operator
EAAEast African Artillery
FFWFitted for wireless – Indicates that the vehicle has the equipment to
mount a wireless set
FOOForward Observation Officer – Captain or Major controlling the fire of the guns, Usually mobile with the supported infantry or tanks
GnrGunner – RA equivalent of a private
GORGun Operations Room (AA)
GPOGun Position Officer – Controlled the Troop position
GSGeneral Service
HAAHeavy Anti-Aircraft
HKSRAHong Kong & Singapore RA – recruited in India, mostly Punjabis
HKVDCHong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps – Locally recruited Europeans and Chinese
HowHowitzer- fires in the upper register i.e. above 45 degrees elevation
HQHead Quarters
LAALight Anti-Aircraft
LAA/ATkLight Anti-Aircraft/Anti-Tank – A unit with two batteries of each type
L/BdrLance Bombardier – RA equivalent of a lance corporal
LMGLight Machine Gun (Bren)
(M)“Mixed” in a Heavy Anti-Aircraft unit. Unit has ATS women fully integrated.
OPObservation Post – static position from which to observe & control the fire of the guns
OPAObservation Post Assistant
OPOObservation Post Officer – FOO in static position
PIATProjector, Infantry, Anti-Tank (Spring loaded anti-tank projectile launcher)
QFQuick Firing – gun using a metal cartridge case for the charge
QMQuartermaster – responsible for regimental stores & equipment
RARoyal Artillery
REMERoyal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers
RFARoyal Field Artillery
RGARoyal Garrison Artillery
RHARoyal Horse Artillery
RMARoyal Malta Artillery
RMARoyal Marine Artillery
RQMSRegimental Quartermaster Sergeant – assists QM, WO2
R SigsRoyal Corps of Signals
RSMRegimental Sergeant Major – WO1
(SR)Supplementary Reserve – N Ireland’s Territorial Army
TATerritorial Army
TCTroop Commander – Usually a Captain employed as an FOO
TFTerritorial Force – predecessor of the Territorial Army
Truck 5 cwt 4×4Jeep
TSMTroop Sergeant Major also known as a Troop BSM
U/As in U/Sgt – Unpaid rank usually for a probationary period.
Veh MechVehicle Mechanic
Warrant OfficerRanks above Staff Sergeant and below commissioned officer. Known as
Sergeant Majors they hold their rank by Royal Warrant
WAAWest African Artillery
WOPWireless Operator
WO1Warrant Officer Class 1 – RSM and equivalent. See Insignia section
WO2Warrant Officer Class 2 – BSM and equivalent. See Insignia section
WO3Warrant Officer Class 3 – TSM. See Insignia section
W/As in W/Sgt – War rank, holder can be asked to revert to pre-war rank at the end of hostilities.
The Royal Artillery 1939-45