Troop Inspection No.2 Commando at Wellington Square, Ayr 1941/2
Captain Harry Blissett is the officer between 2nd and 3rd ranks behind the only Commando standing at ease.
Photo from the collection of L/Cpl. John 'Ken' Emmerson SS Bde HQ (formerly No.2 and 12 Cdo. Provided courtesy of his son John. Posted by Pete R
Updated 6/2/12 Eric Buckmaster adds the following about this photo:
"Each Troop met constantly in their own Troop Location. The 5 Troop location was alway's " Sandgate ". I cannot recall which Troop met in Wellington Square regularly, no doubt one of them did.
If the whole Commando was parading for some reason, special event or occasion, our troop might have been there. The 3 Lorries behind, suggests that the troop that is shown was about to be transported somewhere for some reason. Because they are wearing Battledress it ought to be a smart occasion. For Training exercises we would normally have worn "Fatique Overalls".
Of all the details that you have sent to me this time, the only one I would put money on is " Harry Blissett ". The set of his eyes the roundness of his face would make that him. When we went to Gibraltar he was a Major and he was the Adjutant. ( I'm not sure when he was promoted ).
Each troop had 1 Captain, 2 Lieutenants, 4 Sgts., 4 Cpls, and 4 L/Cpls. Then the men. For parade purposes each day you ususually had an Orderly Officer, and an Orderly Sgt. each day, they took it in turns. It was usual to inspect the men when they paraded, dependant upon what the occasion was. Part of the regular discipline. Daily inspection was normally carried out by the Orderly Officer and the orderly Sgt. or even the TSM in place of the Orderly Officer.
Considerate Officers & NCO's would have the Troop standing at ease, they would then call the Front Rank up to Attention and check them Front & Back. Then call the second rank to attention and stand the front rank at ease, then move on to the 3rd Rank. The fact that 2 Officers were inspecting suggests that perhaps they were in a hurry. Wanted to get on the Transport and away...???.
The whole Troop appears to be standing to Attention whereas the man 2nd from the right of the middle Row is standing at " Ease ". ??? That is unusual. He seems to be the one that Blissett is Inspecting. May have been told to stand at ease. His feet are apart and his Rifle is pushed forward ...!!! Perhaps they were putting him through his paces. Maybe he hadn't moved smart enough so they were having a go at him. ”