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Ivor Ramsden

What is FAMTO?

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I'm going through the Manx Regiment's War Diaries. In 1945 they exchanged their few remaining towed Bofors guns for Morris SP Bofors guns, making them an all-SP unit. The War Diaries refer to " FAMTO kit " for the Chev LAA tractors that they were handing over and to receiving " FAMTO kits " for the Morrises. I've never come across FAMTO and a search on here doesn't bring it up. What does it mean?

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First Aid Mechanical Transport Outfit - vehicle repair kit

 

Or is it FIRST AID MOTOR TRANSPORT OUTFIT ?

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FATSO......That would not be allowed today. Not very P C.

 

Better than being called an ASO :D

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Better than being called an ASO :D

 

In Dutch ASO is more or less short for anti social. :coffee:

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I remember in my early RCT days when you 'first paraded' any vehicle you were going to use, if, for example, a bulb had gone, or you needed wiper blades, rubies, reflectors, et.c et.c, then you went to the FAMTO store to get these odds n sods. We used to have a small store in the unit, but not the G10, where these items, (for the use of....!) were available. You would have a record of all the stuff and say you had 10 stop & tail bulbs on the shelf, you took one and amended the card accordingly, down to 9, and so on. When the store was running low, you would put an indent in to put your stocks back up. The card would again be amended so you always had a 'ready reckoner' of what was on the shelf. So basically, it was like a 'first aid' for your vehicles. :yawn:

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Or is it FIRST AID MOTOR TRANSPORT OUTFIT ?

 

The abbreviation MT is is a military given. Nobody care or needs to know what it stands for. MT is MT. In fourteen years' service I never knew or cared.

 

It was only when I read Warriors Paraded (iirc), an omnibus of the between-wars years works of Anthony Armstrong (one book of which I had read long before joining up) that I found a reference to Mechanical Transport (as opposed to horse-drawn). I sit in the Mechanical Transport camp.

 

Another abbreviation which we used but didn't care about was FHQ. When a cavalry squadron was in camp, its administration was carried out by Squadron Headquarters, but as soon as it went into the field, it became FHQ. Again, nobody knew or cared, but FHQ it was. I always assumed Field or Forward HQ.

 

Coincidentally, Home Headquarters, The Light Dragoons recently digitised all their literature (see http://www.lightdragoons.org.uk/downloads.html ) and I am currently working through The History of 15/19 The King's Royal Hussars 1939 - 1945. It records its orbat in December 1939 as:

 

At this time the holders of the chief appointments in the Regiment were :

Commanding Officer . . Lieutenant Colonel D. S. Frazer.

Second in Command . . Major T. J. Arnott.

OC A Squadron . . Major C. Cokayne-Frith.

OC B Squadron . . Major W. R. N. Hinde.

OC C Squadron . . Captain Sir H. R. K. Floyd, Bt.

OC HQ Squadron . . Major J. G. Leaf.

Adjutant . . . . Captain N. A. Courage.

Quartermaster. . Captain G. R. G. Hart MM.

RSM . . . . RSM Geary.

RQMS . . . . RQMS Mayo.

SSM A Squadron . . SSM CoUey.

SSM B Squadron . . SSM Hingle.

SSM C Squadron . . SSM Lyons.

SSM HQ Squadron . . SSM Craven.

 

Our War Establishment as a Divisional Cavalry Regiment gave us a strength of twenty-one officers and four hundred and thirty-four other ranks, including attached troops. The three Sabre Squadrons each had a Fighting Headquarters and six Troops-FHQ of two tanks and one carrier, two tank Troops of three tanks each, and four carrier Troops of three carriers each-total eight tanks and thirteen carriers, each with a crew of three or four men.

 

My bold. Every day is a training day.

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Alien, A FHQ, so called as it has fighting vehs, as part of it's orbat. Normally used in Tank regts rather than others. Such as the Squadron leaders and 2i/c's tanks.

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Another abbreviation which we used but didn't care about was FHQ. When a cavalry squadron was in camp, its administration was carried out by Squadron Headquarters, but as soon as it went into the field, it became FHQ. Again, nobody knew or cared, but FHQ it was. I always assumed Field or Forward HQ.

 

To me that seems perfectly reasonable & I always took it to mean something like that. But it is one of those abbreviations that seems to lack an official definition & seems to mean different things in different circumstances. I have looked for a meaning in the following official publications:

 

MOD Acronyms & Abbreviations

Joint Services Glossary

Field Service Regulations

Field Service Pocket Books

Staff Duties in the Field

Staff Officers Handbook

Administration within the Corps

Administration within the Division

Administration in the Field

Administration in War

Training for War

Airborne Directives

Armour - RAC Compendium

Land Operations

Manual of Joint Warfare

Military Organization & Administration

RCT Officers Pocket Book

Notes on the British Army

Although there is no definition of the abbreviation there are references in:

 

Administration in the Field refers to Forward HQ

Notes on the British Army refers to Force HQ

 

The post before me refers to Fighting HQ so it clearly lacks official definition & means different things to different units in varying circumstances!

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