8 Battery: An Enduring Force

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Media: BOOK - 276 pages
Author: Major R Cutten RFD
Year: 2023
ISBN: 9780859059909
Other: well illustrated
Publisher: Hesperian Press

The first artillery unit in Western Australia was formed in 1872 with the formation of the WA Troop of Horse Artillery (formerly the Union Troop of Mounted Volunteers). This was followed by frequent name and equipment changes, even after Federation in 1901. At the outbreak of war in 1914, Western Australia was allocated a field artillery battery. From August 1914, the existing 37 Battery militia became 8 Battery AIF.
This book tells the story of 8 Battery, a unit that made its name in World War 1 but whose influence was felt long after the cessation of this conflict.

8 Battery served from Gallipoli on through to the Western Front. While the official unit war diaries and other sources give detailed descriptions of action on the war front it is thanks to the letters and diaries left behind by two remarkable soldiers, namely Hector Roy McLarty and William (Bill) Lyall that the author has been able to capture personal stories of victories and losses, of tragedies and heroic acts, and of comradeship and service to country.

8 Battery’s influence did not end at the finish of the Great War. After World War 1 it was the basis of the continuing service of artillery in Western Australia, Members of 8 Battery also served in World War 2 units, in particular 6 Battery of 2/3 Australian Field Artillery (Greece) and in the 14thBattery of 2/7th Australian Field Regiment (Middle East). Soldiers who had been leaders in World War 1 continued their leadership in the Second World War.

The 8th Battery Association continued the strong bonds formed on the battlefield and was active right up until the 1950s.

8 Battery’s example of continuing service is reflected in today’s former and currently serving gunners. 8 Battery’s story is one that deserves to be told.

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8 Battery: An Enduring Force

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