Hi Rich,RichTO90 wrote: Yeah, my fault and I apologize. ISTR that Gooner published the actual orders as given at the time, but I can't find them. But it remains moot...at 6,000 yards the 6-inch guns are practically at point blank range. And, again relating to the Army "problem" using them...the 6-inch BL Mk VII and VIII, the most common one used for coast artillery, was also used as heavy artillery by the Army in World War I and was the standard CA piece used bythe few Army batteries interwar...so they weren't completely unfamiliar with it...and the Naval gun was exactly the same piece. The actual "difference" from the weapons they already were used to simply wasn't that great.
I only found this in the war diary of 26th Armoured Brigade AKA 1st MMG Brigade AKA Brocforce and dated 3rd October 1940
3. The role of the 6" Naval guns has been laid down by the Eastern Command as:-
(a) To engage hostile vessels approaching within 3 sea miles of the coast.
(b) To prevent transports from approaching beaches suitable for landing troops and A.F.Vs and to engage them when beached so as to destroy their contents.
(c) To engage troops in boats or landing craft and A.F.Vs attempting to gain a footing on beaches.
(d) In the last event to engage targets on the beaches but the 6" guns would only be justified in engaging this type of target if there was not a single transport or landing craft afloat with enemy troops in it.
4. The role of the 4" and 3" Naval Guns will be similar to that of the 6" Naval Guns.
Usually the 6" Guns will open fire first at the largest enemy vessels. The 4" and 3" will commence firing when enemy vessels approach within about 5000 to 4000 yards, and take as their targets the largest vessels which are not already being engaged by the 6" guns.
5. The role of the Medium Howitzer and field guns is to engage vessels within their effective range.
Owing to the shortage of ammunition and to the necessity of engaging troops and A.F.Vs landing on the beaches, Medium Hows. and field guns will not normally open fire at vessels until they approach within about 2,500 yards of the beach and in any case they will fire at the smaller vessels and not at the larger ones which are already being engaged by thr 6", 4" and 3" Naval guns.
6. The role of the 12 Pdr., 6 Pdr and 3 Pdr guns which are sited primarily to bring enfilade fire along the beaches and of the 6" Mortars is to engage enemy troops, especially A.F.Vs in the process of landing, and who are trying to surmount beach obstacles.
It is important that these guns and Mortars should not open fire too soon owing to shortage of ammunition and in order not to interfere with the observation of the Med. and Fd. Artillery Fire.
7. In order to assist observation seawards, arrangements are being made to have Dan Buoys moored at intervals along the front at known ranges from the beach.
8. The ranges at which the different types of guns and hows should open fire are defined above. It is not possible to define exactly lateral zones for each Battery. As far as possible each Battery and O.P. should engage targets straight of its front seawards, and it must be remembered that if two Batteries start to range on the same target simultaneously confusion and waste of ammunition is certain to occur.
9. Location statements of all artillery in Brocforce are being issued to all units, and Unit Commanders will ensure that all Officers know the location and role of all Artillery Weapons in their Area.
Bit worrying that the 6" Mortars were actually to engage targets on the beach - especially as the beaches are mainly shingle along that stretch of coast IIRC.