The Burma Campaign

F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force  

The raising of the mobile detachment, F.F.4 of the Burma Frontier Force was authorised in August 1941 and formation began during September.[1]

The composition of the unit was a headquarters section, one motorised infantry company (column) and three bicycle-mounted infantry columns.  A mortar platoon, with four 3-inch mortars, and a wireless section were also included.  The commanding officer was Major N.T. Loring[2] of the Reserve Battalion, Burma Frontier Force.  The Reserve Battalion also provided the first two companies to join, commanded by 2nd Lieutenant I.C.G. Scott[3] and 2nd Lieutenant I.H. Turner.[4]  Both companies had been raised and trained by Scott, beginning in September 1940.  He had at first been assisted by 2nd Lieutenant P.F. Taylor[5] who was soon transferred away, and replaced by 2nd Lieutenant Turner.  The detachment was later joined by two companies from the Bhamo Battalion, Burma Frontier Force.[6]  One of these, the Kachin company commanded by 2nd Lt. G.H.C. Peters,[7] initially formed part of F.F.1 until transfer to F.F.4.[8]

When fully formed, F.F.4 was organised as follows:

- Headquarters Section: C.O. Major N.T. Loring; Adjutant, 2nd Lt. L.G. Gaudie[9]
- No. 1 Infantry Company/Column (Motorised) : Kachins commanded by 2nd. Lt. G.H.C. Peters
- No. 2 Infantry Company/Column (Bicycle) : Punjabi Mussalmen commanded by 2nd Lt. Robert Cecil Fullarton[10]
- No. 3 Infantry Company/Column (Bicycle) : Punjabi Mussalmen commanded by 2nd Lt. I.C.G. Scott
- No. 4 Infantry Company/Column (Bicycle) : Sikhs commanded by 2nd Lt. I.H. Turner
- Mortar Platoon and the Wireless Section.[11]

In September 1941, Major Loring and 2nd Lt. Scott, together with Scott's company, established a camp at Loilem in the Shan states.  The rest of F.F.4 soon joined them there.  Having infantry companies dependent on bicycles for mobility was something of an experiment and at Loilem training was begun in how to ride them for few of the men knew how.  In October 1941, Scott was sent to reconnoitre F.F.4's planned operational area in the Mongpan-Mongton area.  He quickly discovered that the terrain in this area was not the most suitable for cyclists.  On 15th November 1941, Scott's No. 3 Column cycled to Mongpan, arriving two days later.  Most of the column went to Wantham but a section under Subedar Hussein Khan stayed at Loilem to continue building the camp.  At this time malaria was a major problem and many men went sick with it.[12]

F.F. Detachments in the Southern Shan States & Tenasserim-December 1941 (Indian Official History)

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In December 1941, the 13th Indian Infantry Brigade concentrated in the Taunggyi-Loilem areas prior to conducting training in the Southern Shan States.  F.F.4 came under the command of the brigade for training also.  This command arrangement was confirmed for operations following the declaration of war against Japan on 8th December.  The brigade ordered F.F.4 to Mongpan to garrison crossings over the Salween River and to send one column forward to the Monghta-Mong Hang-Mongton area.[13]  It was Scott's column that was selected to move forward and on 12th December 1941 the column was ordered to Mongton.  Scott set off on 15th December and en route prepared a defensive position at the crossing of the Salween River between Wan Ta Sang on the West and Wan Hsa La on the East.[14]

Towards the end of December, it was decided that Taunggyi should be evacuated by the 13th Indian Brigade.  The Brigade Commando unit was sent to Mongpan where it came under the command of F.F.4.[15]  Scott's column was attached to a Commando on 28th December.  The Commando was led by Captain Jenkins[16] and known as "Jecol Commando".  The combined force set off for Mong Hang on 1st January 1942.  Scott was forced to leave around 30 men behind due to sickness.  The force reached Mong Hang on 4th January however two days later it was ordered to form two smaller detachments.  Half of the force, under Scott, was sent to reconnoitre the area of Mong Kyawt and on to the Salween.  Jenkins' half of the force remained at Mong Hang but was soon ordered to the Toungoo front.  He and his men were replaced by No. 1 Column, F.F.4, the Kachins led by 2nd Lt. Peters.[17]

Major Loring and the advance party of No. 1 Column arrived with Scott at Mong Kyawt on 20th January.  Loring immediately ordered Scott to take a patrol into Thailand but gave orders that Scott was to seek information only and to avoid combat with the Thais.  However two days later a platoon from Scott's No. 3 Column under Havildar Talib Hussain ambushed a party of Thai police and soldiers at Namaklwe.  From then on F.F.4 mounted daily patrols to the border.  Peters' No. 1 Column arrived on 17th February and there were further clashes with Thai patrols three days later.  Elsewhere, Turner's No. 4 Company launched a minor attack in the Mongshat area.  With two platoons and a Commando section, he attacked the Thais on the border and inflicted around 30 casualties for the loss of one man wounded.[18]

By now the Chinese had begun arriving in the area, relieving the British of responsibility for the defence of the Shan States.  F.F.4 was ordered to hand over to the Chinese and move to Mongton.  The main body of F.F.4 left for Mongton on 21st February, leaving Scott to complete the hand over to the Chinese, which he did by 24th February.  From Mongton F.F.4 began to withdraw to Mongpan on 25th February, via Wan Hsa La, arriving on 1st March.  By 8th March F.F.4 was at Monghang where they boarded lorries for the journey to Pyu where the detachment came under the command of the 1st Burma Infantry Division.  Two days later they had reached Pyawbwe and arrived at Toungoo the next day.[19]

1st Burma Division at Pyuntaza (War Diary WO 172/447)

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The 1st Burma Infantry Division gave orders for F.F.4 to act as flank guard on the Division's right flank for the attack on Pyuntaza, beginning on 11th March.  Scott's No. 3 Column was detached to move further South with orders to form a roadblock on the main road between Pyuntaza and Pegu should the main attack on Pyuntaza succeed.  The attack did not succeed and Scott and his men fell back to a rendezvous point hoping to rejoin the main body of F.F.4.  On reaching the rendezvous they found that F.F.4 had gone, as part of the planned withdrawal of the 1st Burma Division.  F.F.4 was now under the command of the 1st Burma Brigade.  As part of the general withdrawal order for the night of 13th/14th March, the detachment, less Scott, was to move from the area of Nyuaunglebin to Mogyaung.[20]

On 15th March, F.F.4, less Scott's Column, was placed under the command of the 2nd Burma Brigade.  It is possible that this was also the date that Lieutenant Turner's No. 4 Column was detached from F.F.4 to come under the direct command of the 1st Burma Infantry Division as divisional troops, acting as a guard unit for the divisional headquarters.  That day the brigade, consisting of only the 2nd Battalion, The Burma Rifles, the 2nd Mountain Battery and F.F.4, issued orders for the protection of flank of the 1st Burma Brigade.  As part of the preparatory moves, F.F.4 was ordered to the vicinity of Daingtaya.  Should the Japanese advance any counter attack was to be undertaken by the 2nd Burma Rifles whilst F.F.4 formed a "southern defensive flank".[21]

Meanwhile Scott, moving by night, continued his own withdrawal and finally joined up with F.F.4 on 17th March.  That day, Major Loring received a message from the 1st Burma Infantry Division that F.F.4 was falling behind.  Loring gave orders that if F.F.4 became separated the men were to rendezvous at a point to the West of Toungoo.  Loring attached his Headquarters to the lead column, No.2 Column under 2nd Lt. Fullarton.  Scott's No. 3 column was to provide the detachment rearguard.  F.F.4 set off at 14;00 on 17th March, in terrible heat, with most of the marching undertaken in the relative cool of the night.[22]

Operations in the Shan States (Indian Official History)

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At dawn on 19th March, F.F.4 set off once more, heading for a village on the Pyu Chaung, it being believed that the 1st Burma Infantry Division was holding the line of the chaung itself.  The detachment halted at noon hoping to make contact with the 1st Burma Infantry Division however none was made so they set off on the march once again.  By 17:00 that same day, the detachment was only a few miles from its objective.  Major Loring was at the head with Fullarton's No. 2 Column, followed by the No. 2 Column mules.  Next in line was Peters' No. 1 Column of Kachins, followed by their mules, followed in turn by the Headquarters section and their mule transport.  At the rear of the line was Scott's No. 3 Column - about one mile to the rear of Loring.  The head of the detachment's column was about level with the village of Obogon on the right, with the edge of the Pegu Yomas on the left.  Suddenly heavy firing broke out from Obogon village, firstly mortars and then machine gun and rifle fire.  The fire was mostly directed at No. 2 column at the front.  All the mules from each column stampeded in turn back through the long line of the detachment, arriving to crash through No.3 Column like a cavalry charge.  Scott sent a platoon forward to the North-east corner of a village to the right of his column.  This platoon pressed through the village to the North and on reaching the village edge brought Obogon under fire.  A runner arrived from Loring arrived with Scott, with a message for Scott to send up a 3-inch mortar.  He could not immediately comply with this for he was busy collecting the startled mules in a copse to the South-Eats on the edge of the Pegu Yomas.  Scott did manage to send a runner to Peters telling him to liaise with Fullarton while Scott finished collecting the mules.  By 18:30 most the mules had been collected so Scott went forward to meet Peters.  Peters had lost contact with Fullarton who had taken cover in the jungle to the West, having taken heavy casualties.  At this point, Scott received word that the Japanese were now advancing from behind F.F.4.  Scott ordered a rapid withdrawal for his and Peters' Columns, westwards into the Pegu Yomas via the copse where the mules were being organised.[23]

By the next morning, 20th March, Scott and Peters were in the jungle, seeking a path to the North.  However they had neither map nor compass and all usable paths seemed to run East to West.  At a halt they contacted the 1st Burma Infantry Division and although their message was acknowledged no orders were forthcoming.  That evening Peters' Column set off on its own, having gone before Scott realised.  He was now left with 60-70 men of his own Column, 40 of Fullarton's, 60 of the Headquarters Section and 40-50 Chinese mule drivers.  Finally a message arrived from the 1st Burma Division.  The division was aware of the ambush and had assumed that the attackers might have been Chinese.  Scott was now instructed to save what he could and withdraw as fast as possible to the West of Toungoo.  Assuming that to travel light would be fastest and safest, the mules were now set free and everything that could not be carried, including the mortars, was destroyed as much as possible.  A single wireless set was retained.  Scott and his men set off at 19:00 that evening.[24]

At first light the next day, after a brief rest, they set off again.  It was terribly hot and they were short of water.  Many of the men were sick.  The Pyu Chaung was reached the following day and on the next, 22nd March, the difficult crossing of the chaung was made.  Having set off once more on the 2nd March, Scott and his men encountered a friendly village where food was obtained and eaten gratefully.  That night food was again obtained from a second village that also provided a guide to see Scott on his way the next morning.  By the night of 25th/26th March Scott estimated that they were about 12-15 miles to the North of Toungoo.  The next day, after a short march, a halt was called for by now everyone was exhausted.  They moved off again later and were fed by more friendly villagers.  At around noon on 27th March they reached the main North-South road and eventually an empty Chinese truck returning from Toungoo.  All the men were loaded into the transport which took them on to Pyinmana where they arrived that night.  From here Scott and the men under his command were taken on to Meiktila.  On 29th March Scott's Column was listed as under the command of the 13th Indian Infantry Brigade at Meiktila. 

The 1st Burma Division, by now in the Allanmyo area, also listed F.F.4, less Scott's Column, as Divisional Troops.  Presumably this refers to Turner's Column which had been acting as headquarters defence troops from some time.[25]

At Meiktila Scott found that Peters had arrived there three days earlier, with only 40 of his men, the rest having deserted.[26]  At the time of F.F.4's troubles on the Toungoo front another detachment, F.F.1, was making its way on foot across the Pegu Yomas to the Irrawaddy front.  In his account of the operations of F.F.1, the Commanding Officer, Major W.R.V. Russell,[27] recalls that his force was joined by about 200 stragglers, mostly Kachins and Punjabi Mussalmen from F.F.4 and a few Gurkhas from a Gurkha regiment.  The stragglers were formed into a third column by F.F.1.  The men were described as being shaken and demoralised and deemed unreliable.  They also imposed a great drain on the dwindling food supplies.  It is probable that these F.F.4 "stragglers" were Peters' Column.  F.F.1 and the men from F.F.4 succeeded in crossing the Pegu Yomas and on 2nd April sent a message to the 1st Burma Infantry Division that they had done so and were now at Paukkaung.[28]

It was at Meiktila that Scott found out what had become of Major Loring and 2nd Lt. Fullarton from the company cook of No.2 Column.  After coming under fire on 19th March Loring, Fullarton and around 40-50 men of No. 2 Column withdrew into the jungle.  Here they stayed for a while before heading deeper into the jungle when they were again attacked by the Japanese.  They headed North, marching for around a few days before turning East.  Unfortunately they were all captured when they encountered a party of Japanese, the cook managing to get away.  After the war, Loring said that when first seen he had thought he had run into a party of Chinese but discovered too late that they were in fact Japanese.[29]

On 31st March, a column of F.F.4, presumably No.4 Column belonging to Turner, was at Dayindabo working with F.F.1 and was placed under the command of the 1st Burma Brigade.  This arrangement continued up until at least 3rd April.  There then followed the withdrawal of the 17th Indian Infantry Division from Prome through the area held by the 1st Burma Infantry Division around Allanmyo, Thayetmyo and Dayindabo.  It seems that Turner's Column was sent back to Meiktila around this time.[30]  Turner's No. 4 Column now joined Scott at Meiktila.  However Turner had been evacuated sick and this now left Scott as the senior officer of F.F.4 and he was made Commanding Officer and promoted to Major.  After about a week at Meiktila F.F.4 moved to Yenangyaung where the unit became part of the Burma Frontier Force depot there and ceased to exist in its original form.[31]

The higher command had decided to reorganise the F.F.s to break up the “big” F.Fs and make them into smaller mobile units of two companies each and to create a separate force of Mounted Infantry by amalgamating the surviving mounted elements.[32]  Orders to this effect had been issued on 3rd April.[33]  It was decided to carry out the reorganisation at Yenangyaung which had recently become the Advanced Headquarters of the Inspector General of the Burma Frontier Force, having been relocated there from Pyawbwe in February, the Rear Headquarters moving to Myitkyina.  At Yenangyaung the Inspector General, Brigadier Roughton,[34] combined these duties with that of the Commander, Central Area, responsible for maintaining and protecting the lines of communication.[35]  By April Yenangyaung was also home to a draft of B.F.F. reinforcements.  F.F.1., F.F.3., and F.F.4. were concentrated in the scrub along the North of Pin Chaung and reorganisation and re-equipping began around 4th or 5th April 1942.[36]

Major Russell was appointed Commander Frontier Force (C.F.F.) to the 1st Burma Division, a role similar to that which Major Mostert had been performing and would continue to do so for the 17th Indian Division.  There were insufficient personnel and the resulting newly reorganised infantry columns were somewhat below the planned establishment.  All were re-equipped except for wireless equipment by the morning of 16th April.[37]  Both the original F.F.1 and F.F.3 were made into a new F.F.1 and a new F.F.3 of two companies of Gurkhas each.[38] 

The Kachin Column from the original F.F.1 joined with its Kachin counterpart from F.F.4 to form a new F.F.4.[39]  This new F.F.4 was commanded by Captain E.G. Forbes,[40] who had been a column commander in F.F.1.[41]  Lieutenant P.L. Hope,[42] formerly the column commander of No.2 Column, F.F.3, was appointed Adjutant and Quartermaster.  It seems F.F.4 was never fully formed and in Major J.H. Turner's[43] account of the fighting that ensued shortly North of the Pin Chaung, the unit is referred to as "F.F.4. (less 1 column)".[44]  Captain Scott retained command of Turner's Sikh Column and after a certain amount of re-equipping moved to Mount Popa on or around 15th April.  There a column of Kumaonis from the original F.F.3 was added to his command which was now known as F.F.9.[45]

Meanwhile the Allanmyo-Thayetmyo area had been given up on the night of 5th/6th April and by 8th April the 1st Burma Infantry Division was holding the Western portion of the Burcorps line running from Minhla on the Irrawaddy out eastwards to Taungdwingyi.  From 11th April the Japanese attacked these positions, driving Burcorps back, and by 14th April the 1st Burma Infantry Division was holding the line of the Yin Chaung.  However this line was given up in turn when a general withdrawal to Yenangyaung began on 16th April.

Sometime on or just before 16th April, the newly formed mobile detachments, F.F.1, F.F.3 and F.F.4, moved back to the North of the Pin Chaung where they were camped prior to being sent out as an information screen.  By now the 1st Burma Infantry Division had withdrawn from the Magwe area to Yenangyaung, South of the Pin Chaung.[46]  It was then that a new threat to the 1st Burma Infantry Division emerged.  What follows is described by Lt. Colonel G.G. Pryce (Commander Corps, Burma Frontier Force, attached to Headquarters, 1st Burma Corps):[47]

F.F. Detachments at the Pin Chaung 16/17th April 1942

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In the evening of 16th April when at _________ (I forget the name of the place but the road goes right to Kyaukpadaung and a left branch goes to Chauk [the village is Gwegyo]), I was ordered to detail two F.Fs. to proceed to the two tracks between the two routes MAGWE – YENANGYAUNG, TAUNGDWINGYI – NATMAUK along which 1 Burdiv and 17 Div respectively were withdrawing.  I proceeded there and gave orders to the Os.C. [Officers Commanding] F.F.1 & F.F.3 (Majors D.R. Turner[48] and J.H. Turner).  I was about to return to Corps H.Qrs about 2030 hours but stopped to speak to Capt. Forbes. A station wagon passed me proceeding in the direction of the village where the Kyaukpadaung and Chauk roads fork. When it reached a point about 500 yards ahead, just before the rise in the ground, a sudden burst of L.A. [light automatic] fire was heard and the station wagon burst into flames.  F.F. Commanders were called and ordered to arrange local protection while proceeding with their preparations to move as ordered.  Shortly afterwards the driver of the station wagon came in and reported that the fire had come from the East of the road.  Several vehicles from the North then came through unmolested.   About this time 2 Bn. R. Tanks Corps [2nd Royal Tank Regiment] arrived.  The officer commanding was given all information and stated that he proposed to push on, so I ordered F.Fs. 1 & 3 to be prepared to follow the Tanks.  The first tank went up the road and when opposite the burning station wagon, one of its tracks was blown off by a grenade or mine and the road was blocked.  O.C. 2nd Bn. R.T.C. [2nd Royal Tank Regiment] then decided to remain for the night or until the road was clear, sent a tank up near the disabled tank, ordered the crew of the latter to evacuate their tank as soon as covering fire was opened by the 2nd tank.  This was done successfully and the crew were evacuated safely. Shortly afterwards the tank was set alight by the enemy.

I then ordered F.F.4. to sweep the area E of the road and they moved off about 2330 hours. Throughout the night there were a number of bursts of L.A. fire and the noise of crackers etc., but it was obvious that no contact was made.  I therefore decided to put a sweep through on both sides of the road, starting just before dawn. F.F.1. was detailed.  At first no opposition was encountered.  At about dawn heavy fire was heard and F.F.4 was later seen withdrawing on the EAST of the road and suffered considerable casualties.  F.F.1 was then held up on the East of the road but advanced on WEST of the road for a time, when this flank was also held up by fire further to the West.  One Pl. F.F.3 was then despatched to deal with this enemy post and receiving valuable aid from a section of tanks, were able to overcome the opposition and the advance continued.  The right flank was still held up and the tanks were unable to help.  I went to this flank and was able to get a small party of about 1 section forward to within 50 yards of the high ground occupied by the enemy.  About ½ of the section became casualties and further progress was impossible owing to the enfilade fire of a L.A. further to the East.  By this time those on the West of the road had advanced and were about level with the party on the East of the road.  I proceeded over to them, decided to put in an attack on the high ground on the EAST of the road from the West, and went back to arrange for co-operation with the Tanks.  The O.C. Tank Bn., put one tp. at my disposal to support the attack.  One A.A. [anti-aircraft] gun also came into action and engaged the enemy position.  The attack went in and the enemy evacuated the position and withdrew to the East. Having proceeded about 300 yards to the EAST of the road a position was occupied under heavy S.A.A. and Mortar fire.  The Tanks and a good deal of the transport which had been piling up all night went through.  The enemy then infiltrated round our flanks and got back to the road preventing any further movement along the road and also taking us in the rear.  “A” Company of the KOYLI [King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry] who were on the far side of the road block had occupied the highest ground astride the road further to the North and we withdrew on them.  On our departure a flight of about 12 Japanese bombers bombed what transport remained in PINCHAUNG [sic]."[49]

The 1st Burma Infantry Division eventually escaped across the Pin Chaung on the afternoon of 19th April, having had to abandon most of its motor transport.

F.F.4 was almost destroyed at the Pin Chaung and set off North for Myitkyina but never reached there.  On the way the men were paid off at the railway junction town of Naba on the Western side of the Irrawaddy near Katha, the Kachins being allowed to return to their homes.[50]

22 November 2017



[1] IOR/M/3/1064, Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM)

[2] Nigel Trench Loring, born at Quetta, India (Pakistan), 12th July 1906.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt. to the Unattached List, 4th February 1926.  Appointed to the Indian Army as 2nd Lt. (IA 15), Skinner's Horse, 9th April 1927.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 4th May 1928.  Promoted to Captain, 25th March 1935.  Seconded to the Burma Defence Force, 27th August 1938.  Assistant Commandant, Reserve Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, Pywabwe, 1939-41.  Assistant Commandant, "On Duty in Tenasserim Division", the Bhamo Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, 1941-42.  Raised and became Commanding Officer of F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, 1st September 1941 to 25th March 1942.  Officer Commanding F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force at Loilem, November 1941.  As Commander, F.F.4, wounded and captured by the Japanese on the retreat to Toungoo, 25th March 1942.  Promoted to Major, 4th February 1943.  Whilst in captivity, tortured by the Japanese in an attempt to make him broadcast propaganda on Radio Rangoon, 1944?.  Mentioned in Despatches for gallant and distinguished services while Prisoner of War, gazetted, 18th April 1946.  Retired, 14th October 1947.  Died, 24th December 1947 ("The Jungle in Arms", Oatts B., William Kimber (1962); “Short History of F.F.3” by Major J.H. Turner, WO 203/5702 (Short History of F.F.3, WO 203/5702); British Army List; British Library; Burma Frontier Force; Short History of F.F.3 by Major J.H. Turner, WO 203/5702; WO 392/25 (Forces War Records); CWGC; Indian Army List April 1939; Indian Army List Jan 1939; London Gazette; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM)).

[3] Ian Campbell Graham Scott, born, 1st October 1915.  General Staff, Steel Brothers, 1939 to 1st January 1941.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt., ABRO (ABRO 82), 10th November 1939.  Served with the Reserve Battalion, Burma Frontier Force at Pywabwe, in charge of infantry training, September 1940 to August 1941.  Column Commander, No. 3 Infantry column, F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, September 1941 to end March 1942.  Served with F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, training at Loilem, September 1941 to November 1941.  Served with F.F.4 at Mongpan, November 1941 to February 1942.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 6th December 1941.  Transferred with F.F.4 to the Toungoo front and took part in operations with the 1st Burma Division, February 1942 to March 1942.  Temporary Captain from 14th March 1942.  On disbandment of F.F.4, formed and commanded F.F.9, Burma Frontier Force, April 1942 to May 1942.  War substantive Captain and temporary Major from 19th June 1942.  Served with the 4th Battalion, The Burma Regiment as company commander, training at Hoshiarpur, 1st October 1942 to October 1943.  In action in the Kachin Hills against Japanese lines of communications and in the advance on Myitkyina, October 1943 to April 1944.  As temporary Major, wounded, 8th April 1944.  Commanded SCOCOL in the crossing of the Nsop Hka and the capture of Myitkyina, June 1944 to July 1944.  As (temporary?) Lt. Colonel, Commanding Officer of the 4th Battalion, The Burma Regiment in anti-dacoit operations in the Arakan, July 1944 to September 1945.  As temporary Major, Mentioned in Despatches, gazetted, 19th September 1946.  Rejoined the 4th Battalion, The Burma Regiment as Second-in-command after returning from leave in the United Kingdom, 2nd May 1945.  Appointed Battalion Commander, the 4th Battalion, The Burma Regiment and acting Lt. Colonel, 22nd January 1946.  As acting Lt. Colonel, relinquished command of the 4th Battalion, The Burma Regiment and left by air for Calcutta en route for UK release, 19th September 1946.  Worked for Steel Brothers in Pakistan and Burma, post-war (Burma Army List; Burma Army List 1943; FindMyPast; http://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/1030006969; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM); London Gazette; Thacker's Directory; War Diary of the 4th Battalion Burma Regiment 1943, WO 172/2656; War Diary of the 4th Battalion Burma Regiment 1944, WO 172/5037 and 10321).

[4] Ian Henry Turner, born, 22nd May 1909.  Emergency Commission to the General List as 2nd Lt. (189635), 28th April 1941.  Served with the Reserve Battalion, Burma Frontier Force; assisted Lt. I.C.G. Scott with infantry training, May? 1941 to August 1941.  Column Commander, No. 4 Column, F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, September 1941 to March 1942.  Temporary Captain (war substantive Lieutenant), 14th March 1942.  Evacuated sick, end March/early April 1942.  Temporary Captain from 28th August 1943.  As war substantive Major, relinquished commission and granted the honorary rank of Lt. Colonel, 11th October 1946 (British Army List October 1945; Burma Defence Services List July 1941; Burma Army List 1943; London Gazette; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM)).

[5] Peter Frank Taylor, born, Quetta, India, 18th January 1916.  Served with the Burma Frontier Force, 1940 to 1941.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt., ABRO (ABRO 95), 7th March 1940.  Served with the Reserve Battalion, Burma Frontier Force at Pyawbwe, before being transferred(?) sometime after, September 1940.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 21st December 1941.  As Lieutenant, served with F.F.5, Burma Frontier Force, 11th April 1942 to 13th April 1942.  Captured by the Japanese along with his commanding officer, Major Edgley, and the Commanding Officer, the 1st Battalion, Burma Rifles, at Migyaungye.  When the 1st Battalion, Burma Rifles launched a counter-attack, his captors murdered Edgley and attempted to murder Taylor.  However Taylor was wounded and feigned death and eventually escaped, 13th April 1942.  Temporary Captain from 10th July 1942.  As Major, served as "B" Company Commander, the 1st Battalion, The Burma Regiment, from 26th March 1944.  Died, Cornwall, 1979 (“Burma Frontier Force by Lt. Col G.G. Pryce”, WO 203/5697; Burma Army List; Burma Defence Services List 1941; Burma Army List 1943; FindMyPast; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM); War Diary of the 1st Battalion, The Burma Regiment, WO 172/5036).

[6] Scott

[7] Gerald Henry Croft Peters, born, 23rd September 1917.  Appointed Burma Civil Service, Class 1, 26th August 1940, gazetted, 24th September 1940.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt., ABRO (ABRO 234), 26th October 1941.  Served as Column Commander, No. 1 Infantry Column (Motorised), F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, late 1941 to April 1942.  Served with F.F.8, Burma Frontier Force, April 1942?.  Temporary Captain from 19th June 1942.  Served as Special Officer under the Burma Defence Department, 1st September 1942.  Released from active service with effect from 1st September 1942 ("Burma Frontier Force" by Lt. Colonel G.G. Pryce, WO 203/5697 (Burma Frontier Force, WO 230/5697; Burma Army List 1943; Burma Civil List 1942; London Gazette; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM)).

[8] “F.F.1’s Part in the Burma Campaign by Lt. Col. W.R.V. Russell M.C.”, WO 203/5699

[9] Lawrence Glen Gaudie, born, Eton, Buckinghamshire, 1914.  Worked for Steel Brothers, 1939.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt., ABRO (ABRO 45), 10th November 1939.  Promoted to Lieutenant (listed as "L.G. Gandie"), 20th September 1940.  Assistant Commandant, Northern Shan States Battalion, Burma Frontier Force and Officer Commanding the Kutkai outpost detachment, 1941.  (An "L.G. Gandie" wrote a "note" on F.F.4 - see WO/172/980.  This note has not yet been found in the archives), late 1941.  Served with F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force as Adjutant, 1st January 1942 to April 1942.  Married Valerie Catherine Davies Borrington, Madras, 1942.  Temporary Captain, 14th March 1942.  Appointed Commanding Officer of the "newly reorganised" F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force but went sick and was replaced by Captain D.R. Turner, April 1942.  Served with the Chin Hills Battalion, The Burma Regiment, 1944? to 1945.  Died, Buckinghamshire, 1971 ("Burma Frontier Force" by Lt. Colonel G.G. Pryce, WO 203/5697 (Burma Frontier Force, WO 230/5697); "Distinctly I Remember", H. Braund, Wren (1972); “F.F.1’s Part in the Burma Campaign by Lt. Col. W.R.V. Russell M.C.”, WO 203/5699; Ancestry.co.uk; Anglo-Burmese Library; Burma Army List 1943; FindMyPast; London Gazette; War Diary of the 8th Burma Rifles, WO 172/980; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM)).

[10] Robert Cecil Fullarton, born, 25th May 1925.  (Sometimes listed as "Fullerton")  Emergency Commission to the General List from O.C.T.U. Cadet as 2nd Lt. (217682), 26th October 1941.  Served with the Bhamo Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, prior to joining F.F.4, November 1941 to late 1941/early 1942?.  Served as Column Commander, No. 2 (Punjabi Mussalmen) Column with F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, late 1941/early 1942? to 25th March 1942.  Captured along with his Commanding Officer, Major N.T. Loring, 25th March 1942.  Prisoner of war in Rangoon Jail, 1942 to 1945.  Relinquished commission and granted the honorary rank of Lieutenant, 20th July 1946 (WW2 Talk Forum - Liberation of Rangoon Jail; London Gazette; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM)).

[11] Scott

[12] Scott

[13] War Diary of the 13th Indian Brigade, WO 172/563

[14] Scott

[15] WO 172/563

[16] A Commando Platoon under a British Officer was formed by making up a section from each battalion's reinforcements and attaching the platoon to the Brigade Headquarters.  A similar platoon was formed in each battalion of the brigade.  For special missions the platoons from the battalions were attached to the platoon in the Brigade H.Q. and a Commando Company was thus formed.

Charles George Jenkins, born in London, 25th October 1912.  S.S.I., Emergency Commission, King’s Own Regiment, 12th August 1940.  Emergency Commission as 2nd Lt. (war substantive Lieutenant) (EC 537) to the Indian Army, 12th August 1940.  Served with the 5th Battalion, 1st Punjab Regiment, 1941 to 18th April 1942.  Commanded "JECOL COMMANDO" of the 13th Indian Infantry Brigade, Southern Shan States, December 1941 to January 1942.  As commander of the 13th Indian Brigade Commando Company, was killed near point 501, Yenangyuang, 18th April 1942 ("The First Punjabis, History Of The First Punjab Regiment 1759-1956", MI Qureshi, Gale & Polden (1958); ancestry.co.uk; British Army List; Commonwealth War Graves Commission; London Gazette; Private Papers of Lt. Col. I.C.G. Scott (IWM); War Diary of the 13th Indian Brigade, WO 172/563).

[17] Scott

[18] Scott

[19] Scott

[20] Scott; War Diary of the 1st Burma Division, WO 172/447

[21] WO 172/447; War Diary of the 2nd Burma Brigade, WO 172/548

[22] Scott

[23] Scott

[24] Scott; WO 172/447

[25] Scott; WO 172/447

[26] Scott

[27] William Rodney Villiers Russell born, 15th March 1914.  Usually went by his middle name, Rodney and called "Roddie" by some.  Educated at Wellington College, 1926ish.  Commissioned into The Rifle Brigade as 2nd Lt. (62669), 1st February 1934.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 1st February 1937.  Seconded to the Burma Defence Force, Assistant Commandant, Myitkyina Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, 10th September 1938 to late 1939.  Special Employed, 11th September 1938.  War Substantive Major, 10th January 1940.  Assistant Commandant, Northern Shan States Battalion, Burma Frontier Force and Officer Commanding the Kutkai outpost detachment, late 1941.  As Assistant Commandant, Burma Frontier Force, on Special Duty in the Northern Shan States, 1941 to June 1942.  Served as Commanding Officer, F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force (incorrectly recorded in recommendation for M.C. as "W.B.R. Russell"), 1941 to May 1942.  Promoted to Captain, 1st February 1942.  Temporary Major, 14th March 1942.  As Captain (temporary Major), attached to the Burma Frontier Force, while in command of F.F.1, awarded the Military Cross, gazetted, 28th October 1942, for which the citation reads:

Division: 1st Burma Division, Burma Corps
Unit:  F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force

Date of Recommendation:           4th June 1942

Action for which recommended :-           During the operations South of TOUNGOO subsequent to 11 March 1942 Maj RUSSELL was in command of F.F.1 a column which through no fault of his had lost touch by wireless with the remainder of the force and had of necessity to be left behind during the withdrawal.  In spite of many vicissitudes and brushes with the Japanese cavalry (the column was for some time behind the Japanese lines) Maj RUSSELL managed to bring out his column complete, men and animals, across the PEGU YOMAS, living on the country wherever food could be found for two weeks and marching 25 to 30 miles daily.  Rations were approximately a handful of rice per man per day.  The morale of the small force under Maj RUSSEL’s [sic] leadership never waned and on all rejoining the division although tattered, thin and exhausted, their spirit was magnificent.  This I am convinced was due to the personality and character of their leader.           

Recommended by:  Maj-General J.B. Scott, M.C, Comd 1 Burma Division
Signed By:  H.R. Alexander (General)

Appointed Commander Frontier Force (C.F.F.) to the 1st Burma Infantry Division, 14th April 1942.  As Lt. Colonel, Commanding Officer, The Chin Hills Battalion, The Burma Regiment, 1st September 1942 to 4th November 1944.  Temporary Lt. Colonel, 4th November 1943.  Relinquished command of the Chin Hills Battalion, The Burma Regiment and left for repatriation to the U.K., 4th November 1944.  As War Substantive Major, promoted to Major, 1st February 1947.  Died, 7th December 1994 ("Distinctly I Remember", H. Braund, Wren (1972); British Army List; Indian Army List April 1940 - January 1941; Indian Army List January 1941 - July 1942; "Kelly's Burma Campaign", Kelly D., Tiddim Press (2003); London Gazette; WO 373/30/171; WO 373/35/131; WO 203/974; War Diary of the Chin Hills Battalion, WO 172/5040; www.thepeerage.com/p8058.htm).

[28] WO 203/5699

[29] Scott

[30] WO 172/447; “Indian Armed Forces in World War II, The Retreat from Burma 1941-42”, Prasad, B, Orient Longmans (1954).

[31] Scott

[32] WO 230/5699

[33] War Diary of the 1st Burma Corps, WO 172/403

[34] Francis Arthur Guy Roughton, born, 6th July 1884.  As Cadet, Royal Military Academy, commissioned as 2nd Lt. (3886), Royal Garrison Artillery, 15th July 1903.  Promoted to Lieutenant, Army, 15th October 1905.  Promoted to Lieutenant, Royal Garrison Artillery, 15th July 1906.  Appointed Lieutenant, Indian Army, the 113th Infantry, from the Royal Garrison Artillery, 3rd March 1908, with seniority from 15th  October 1905.  Promoted to Captain, 15th July 1912.  Served as Staff Captain, Mesopotamia Expeditionary Force, 9th September 1917 to 25th April 1918.  As Captain, appointed D.A.Q.M.G., Mesopotamia Expeditionary Force, with the rank of temporary Major whilst so employed, 26th April 1918 to 5th January 1919.  Promoted to Major, 15th July 1918.  Mentioned in Despatches for distinguished and gallant services in Mesopotamia (Iraq), gazetted, 27th August 1918.  Mentioned in Despatches for distinguished and gallant services in Mesopotamia (Iraq) whilst serving with the 113th Infantry, gazetted, 21st February 1919.  Served as D.A.A. & Q.M.G., India, 13th May 1919 to 15th September 1919.  Served as D.A.Q.M.G., Northern Command, India, 1st November 1920 to 31st May 1923.

Served as G.S.O. 2, India, 1st June 1923 to 31st October 1924.  Promoted to Lt. Colonel, 6th February 1929.  Promoted to Colonel, 6th February 1932.  Transferred to the Unemployed List, 6th February 1933 to 13th October 1933.  Served as A.A. & Q.M.G., India, 14th June 1934 to 24th June 1935.  Promoted to Colonel, 14th June 1934, with seniority from 6th February 1933.  Employed as Inspector-General, Burma Frontier Force, granted the temporary rank of Brigadier whilst, 1st April 1937.  Retired, 25th June 1940.  Awarded C.B.E., 12th June 1941.  After the fall of Rangoon in early March 1942, moved to Yenangyaung with the Advanced Headquarters, Burma Frontier Force where he also became Commander, Central Area (a line of communication headquarters), March 1942.  Exhausted, he was evacuated across the Pin Chaung with the C.O. of the 1st Burma Division, Major Bruce Scott, by carrier, 19th April 1942.  Was evacuated to Mandalay and from there by hospital launch where shortly after he died, 21st April 1942.  Mentioned in Despatches, gazetted, 28th October 1942 (British Army List; CWGC; Indian Army List 1921; London Gazette; WO 203/5698; WO 203/5698; CWGC).

[35] “Notes on the Burma Frontier Force” by Captain Hales, WO 203/5698

[36] “Burma Frontier Force by Lt. Col G.G. Pryce”, WO 203/5697

[37] WO 203/5699

[38] WO 203/5699; “Short History of F.F.3” by Major J.H. Turner, WO 203/5702

[39] WO 203/5702

[40] Edward Gordon Forbes, born, Bengal, India, 16th November 1905.  Occupation given as "Planter" when sailing from London to Singapore aboard the "Atsuta Maru", 11th February 1927.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt. to the ABRO (ABRO 69), 10th November 1939.  Served with the Burma Frontier Force, 1940.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 10th May 1941.  Served with F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force, 1st January 1942.  Was temporary Commander of H.Q. F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force at the fighting at Pyuntaza, on or around, 10th March 1942.  Temporary Captain, 14th March 1942.  Commanding Officer of the "newly reorganised" F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, April-May 1942?.  Occupation given as "Accountant" when travelling from London to Auckland, New Zealand aboard RMS "Rangitata", 18th December 1958 ("Burma Frontier Force" by Lt. Colonel G.G. Pryce, WO 203/5697 (Burma Frontier Force, WO 230/5697); “F.F.1’s Part in the Burma Campaign by Lt. Col. W.R.V. Russell M.C.”, WO 203/5699; Burma Army List; Burma Army List October 1940; Burma Army List 1943; FindMyPast).

[41] WO 203/5699

[42] Philip Lynton Hope, born, 31st July 1917.  Employed as a mercantile assistant, General Staff, Steel Brothers.  Travelled to Rangoon from Liverpool, 1938.  Emergency Commission from Cadet at O.C.T.U. to the General List, as 2nd Lt. (189602), 28th April 1941.  Served as Column Commander, F.F.3, Burma Frontier Force, May 1941 to April 1942.  As Lieutenant, appointed Adjutant and Quarter-Master, F.F.4, Burma Frontier Force, April 1942.  Promoted to war substantive Lieutenant, 10th July 1942.  Served with the Northern Kachin Levies, December 1943 to 1944.  Served as Adjutant, the Northern Kachin Levies, 1944.  As temporary Captain, General List, Mentioned in Despatches, gazetted, 5th April 1945.  As war substantive Captain, relinquished commission and granted the honorary rank of Major, 6th August 1946.  Employed as a mercantile assistant, Steel Brothers, 1946-47? ("Amiable Assassins, The Story of the Kachin Guerillas of North Burma", Fellowes-Gordon I., Robert Hale (1957); “Short History of F.F.3” by Major J.H. Turner, WO 203/5702

(Short History of F.F.3, WO 203/5702); Ancestry.co.uk; British Army List; Burma Army List 1943; FindMyPast; Thacker's Directory 1941; London Gazette; War Diary of the Kachin Levies, WO 172/2656).

[43] John Hector Turner, born, 6th August 1903.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt. to the Unattached List, 31st January 1924.  Appointed to the Indian Army as 2nd Lt.(IA 525), 15th March 1925.  Served with Hodson’s Horse from 18th March 1925.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 30th April 1926.  Served with the Hazara Pioneers from 1st May 1927.  Served with the 7th Gurkha Rifles from 1933?.  Promoted to Captain, 31st January 1933.  Appointed Assistant Commandant, Southern Shan States Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, Taunggyi, 8th March 1938.  Commander, F.F.3, Burma Frontier Force from formation until disbandment, 1st October 1940 to 20th May 1942.  Promoted to Major, 31st January 1941.  As Major, author of “Burma Frontier Force: short history”, WO 203/5702 - a history of F.F.3, Burma Frontier Force, 31st May 1943.  Commanding Officer, the 4th Battalion, 7th Gurkha Rifles, 16th March 1944 to 4th December 1944.  Promoted to temporary Lt. Colonel, 16th June 1944.  As Lt.-Colonel, C.O. of the 4th Battalion, 5th Gurkha Rifles, during the Battle of Pakokku, wounded, 10th February 1945.  Died, 11th February 1945 ("History of 7th Duke of Edinburgh's Own Gurkha Rifles", J.N. Mackay, Blackwood (1962); “Short History of F.F.3” by Major J.H. Turner, WO 203/5702 (Short History of F.F.3, WO 203/5702); “War Services of British and Indian Officers of the Indian Army 1941”, Savannah (2004); British Army List; Commonwealth War Graves Commission; Indian Army List; London Gazette).

[44] WO 203/5702

[45] Scott

[46] WO 203/5699; Official History

[47] Gordon George Pryce, born, 21st May 1901.  Commissioned as 2nd Lt. to the Unattached List, 28th December 1921.  Appointed to the Indian Army as 2nd Lt., 17th April 1923.  Attached to the 5th Battalion, 8th Punjab Regiment, 17th April 1923.  Served Waziristan, 1923-24.  Promoted to Lieutenant, 23rd March 1924.  Promoted to Captain, 23rd December 1930.  Seconded and served as Assistant Commandant with the 2nd Rangoon Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, 1st April 1937.  Served as Assistant Commandant, Northern Shan States Battalion, Burma Frontier Force, 1938 to 13th July 1940.  Promoted to Major, 23rd December 1938.  Formed F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force at Kutkai and became first Commanding Officer, 14th July 1940 to 1st October 1941.  Appointed as Commander Corps, Burma Frontier Force, attached to Headquarters, 1st Burma Corps, 29th March 1942.  Mentioned in Despatches for service in Burma, attached to the Burma Frontier Force, gazetted, 28th October 1942.  Served with the 8th Punjab Regiment, 13th April 1943.  Died (buried at Delhi War Cemetery), 8th December 1943 ("War Services of British and Indian Officers of the Indian Army 1941", Savannah (2004); “Burma Frontier Force by Lt. Col G.G. Pryce”, WO 203/5697; “F.F.1’s Part in the Burma Campaign by Lt. Col. W.R.V. Russell M.C.”; British Army List; Commonwealth War Graves Commission; Indian Army List; Burma Army List; London Gazette).

[48] David Rae Turner. Emergency Commission as 2nd Lt. to the General List (217666), 26th October 1941.  As Captain, Column Commander of a Gurkha Column, F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force at Pyuntaza, February 1942.  Became Commanding Officer of F.F.1, Burma Frontier Force when the appointed C.O., Captain Gaudie, went sick, mid-April 1942.  Continued as Commanding Officer of F.F.1 following the amalgamation with F.F.7, May 1942.  War substantive Lieutenant, 1st October 1942 (“Burma Frontier Force by Lt. Col G.G. Pryce”, WO 203/5697; “F.F.1’s Part in the Burma Campaign by Lt. Col. W.R.V. Russell M.C.”, WO 203/5699; British Army List; London Gazette).

[49] WO 203/5697

[50] Scott