Phantom

In 1940 the GHQ Reconnaissance Unit Phantom operated as part of Home Forces. Its role was to obtain information for GHQ and RAF Bomber Command – principally to keep track of the position of Home Forces as well as the enemy and ensure that any bombing by the RAF hit the enemy. It was commanded by Lt. Col C.F Hopkinson, MC., North Staffs Regt. Its strength was 29 officers and 250 men and was based at Lechlade, Gloucestershire. It was equipped with armoured scout cars, armed motor-cycle combinations, motor cycles, wireless trucks and cars.

The unit was to obtain information for GHQ Home Forces and the RAF by liaison or reconnaissance. Information was to be transmitted by direct wireless link to GHQ and appropriate RAF Head Quarters. It could operate either as a unit or detachments.

The code name of this unit was ‘Phantom’. Personnel wore a white letter ‘P’ on a dark background on the right shoulder. Vehicles had a ‘P’ painted on them and when on a mission they would have flown a small black flag with the letter ‘P’ in the center.

Eastern Command instructed all Home Forces in its area to give this unit the upmost assistance should it be required to operate in this Command’s area. Hence had invasion occured in 1940, this unit could have been of great value to any Battalion / Divison engaged with the enemy.

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