British & Commonwealth Orders of Battle

[ Polish Army in the UK and the 1st Polish Corps ] 1st Polish Armoured Division ] Polish Parachute Bde ] Polish Carpathian Bde ] Polish Army in the East and the 2nd Polish Corps ]
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Polish Army in the UK and the 1st Polish Corps

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After the defeat of Poland in 1939, many Polish soldiers and civilians made their way to Syria and France via Romania and Hungary, flocking to join the Polish Armed Forces in the West. By May 1940 there were 84,500 men under arms in France and Syria. In April 1940 a brigade took part in the battle for Norway before returning to France.  The Independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade was formed in the French Levant (Syria) and later came under British command in the Western Desert.  Polish formations took part in the battle for France and many were captured and some were interned in Switzerland.  Others made their way to the Atlantic ports where around 24,000 were evacuated to the Britain.

The Polish Army was located in Scotland from the summer of 1940 and began immediate rebuilding.  The troops were to remain in Scotland until the end of the war. Organised into the Polish Corps (later the 1st Polish Corps following the formation of the 2nd Corps in the Middle East), Polish troops were involved in the defence of the Fife region of eastern Scotland from a potential German invasion from Norway. The Corps became the base on which the 1st Armoured Division, the 1st Independent Parachute Brigade, the 4th Infantry Division and 16th Independent Armoured Brigade were formed.

The 1st Armoured Division served in France and North West Europe after D-Day.  The 1st Polish Parachute Brigade, although trained to fight in Poland, were dropped near Arnhem in September 1944.

Orders of battle

Polish Army Corps in the UK - 22nd February 1942
Polish Parachute Brigade

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Contact Steve Rothwell with comments and additional information