The Hampstead Heavies
138th Heavy Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery
Foundation and Training
The Heavies, equipped with 60-pounder field guns, served in France and Belgium during the First World War, being on active service from April 1916 until November 1918. During 1916 the Battery was based mainly in the vicinity of Bully les Mines, south of Bèthune, and the following year was engaged in heavy fighting around Ypres and, later, on the Belgian coast near Nieuport Bains. In the last year of the war the Battery faced the final German offensive, from March 1918 onwards, and was then involved in the Allied offensive which lasted from 8 August until the Armistice on 11 November 1918.
The Battery on completion of training in 1916
During the conflict and its aftermath the Battery suffered a total of 38 fatalities and a number of other losses through medical discharges and transfers to other units.
My father, Gunner Sydney W.H. Ridler, Driver C Sub-Section, Regimental Number 293142, was fortunate to return to Hampstead after the war and a personal view of his service and the development of the Hampstead Heavies website is given HERE