Royal Artillery gun detachment preparing to fire a 3.7 in howitzer during the Battle of the Ngakyedauk Pass, Arakan, February 1944
Photograph, World War Two, Far East, 1944.
The Quick Firing 3.7 inch Mountain Howitzer was ideal for deployment in the jungles and hills of Burma. Originally introduced in 1915 as a replacement for the 10 Pounder jointed gun, it was designed to be broken down into several loads for transport by mule. Given an open gun position, a practiced crew could have the gun unloaded from the mules, reassembled and deployed ready for action in two minutes.
Although officially designated as the Mountain Howitzer it was always known as the Pack Howitzer. It was the first British gun to have a split trail carriage that allowed firing at high angles, an ideal feature in mountainous areas. It fired a shrapnel shell to a maximum range of 5,900 yards or a high explosive shell to 4,500 yards.
From a collection of official photographs collected by Major General (later Lieutenant General) Sir Frank Walter Messervy.
NAM Accession Number
National Army Museum, Out of Copyright
National Army Museum, Study collection