Northumberland Scout Section

Supporting regiment
The Somerset Light Infantry
About

It appears that the South & West Somerset Scout Section moved wholesale from Somerset to Northumberland in June 1941. It isn’t clear why this happened and it doesn’t appear to have occurred elsewhere in the country. So far as is known there was no other Northumberland Scout Section.

Both Lieutenants Gough and Thouron were remembered by Doxford Patrol member Hedley Dixon. The latter was considered an expert with firearms.

Pictures
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OB site main chamber (from Simon) 2020
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General view to escape tunnel end (from Simon) 2020
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Escape tunnel end (from Simon) 2020
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Escape tunnel end (from Simon) 2020
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Entrance end (from Simon) 2020
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Entrance end (from Simon) 2020
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Entrance wall collapse (from Simon) 2020
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Entrance end wall detail (from Simon) 2020
Operational Base

The Operational Base for the Scout Section is said to have been behind the Blue Bell Hotel. They may also have used one in woods near Shillbottle.

The attached are photos from a contact who found this OB close to the Kyloe OB in Northumberland. It is known Kyloe Patrol used the one cut into the crag face. The Scout Section under Intelligence Officer Quayle were based nearby and we think this must have been their OB. The escape tunnel end is quite good, the entrance end is collapsed. There is no sign of any corrugated tin so that must have been recycled by local gamekeepers or farmers or it was never completed. The site is higher in the woods away from the Patrol OB within Kyloe Woods. The ground has been dug out to form a small valley to drop the elephant shelter into and then recovered to form the hilly ground. The escape tunnel route is out from the wall and veers off to the right into the trees.

Scout section personnel
Name Occupation Posted from Until
Lieutenant Victor Albert Gough

Mechanical Engineer for Imperial Tobacco

01 Jun 1941 09 Sep 1942
Lieutenant John Rupert Hunt Thouron 07 Sep 1943 08 Nov 1943
Corporal Robert Stephens 1941 1943
Private Louis Henry Baker

Painter & decorator (1939)

01 Jun 1941 1943
Other personnel

The complete Scout Section would consist of a Lieutenant and his driver-batman and twelve other men including a Sergeant, Corporal, driver for the Section truck and a cook.

Transport

The precise transport for the section is not known. Most Scout Sections had a 15 cwt truck and an Austin 2-seater car for the officer. They were normally issued with bicycles as well. 

References

Tim Wray correspondence

Stephen Lewins and Simon from Thompson's garage

The old coleshill-house-forum

Newcastle Evening Chronicle April 1968

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