Malcolm Atkin Military Research
A place to correct any errors in the publication Fighting Nazi Occupation - with all apologies!
pp.98 and 124 Arthur Douglas Ingrams not David Ingrams
p.181 age of Claude Dansey at joining Lancashire Fusiliers 22 not 20.
Please contact the author if you notice any other fasctual errors. They can then be corrected in any future edition.
Arthur Douglas Ingrams (1903 - 1988)
Arthur Douglas Ingrams was a civilian OUT Station wireless operator in Devon, who was appointed in late 1943 to become SDB Intelligence Officer for Devon and the south-west. He had originally been commissioned into the Territorial Army Royal Garrison Artillery in 1923 but appears in the Army Lists as being commissioned into the Royal Artillery in April 1925. He then become a local farmer, albeit remaining on the List of Territorial Reserve officers as a Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery. It has been suggested (May 2014, p.21) that he may have served with SIS in the earlier part of the war but no clear evidence of this has yet been discovered.
His promotion from the ranks of the SDB was part of a wider pattern in the Auxiliary Units to remedy the progressive withdrawl of army Intelligence Officers from late 1943-4 (seen also in the employment of men commissioned from the Home Guard as Operational Branch IOs). ATS commander Beatrice Temple met the 40 year-old Ingrams in late January 1944 and was not impressed, describing him as ‘very ineffectual’. Her opinion as a senior officer in the Auxiliary Units cannot be ignored but nonetheless, Ingrams moved as IO to Norfolk in spring 1944 - but still on the formal Army List as a mere Lieutenant. This was unusual for Auxiliary Unit Intelligence Officers whose promotions were usually quickly posted as Acting or Temporary Captains. His Military Identity Card from February 1944 (May 2014, p.23), however, suggests that he was operating with a local rank of Acting Captain, wearing an Intelligence Corps cap badge.
Promotion did not come easily. It was only from December 1944, after the disbandment of the SDB, that he was formally promoted to the rank of Temporary Captain (1945 Army List). He remained at this rank throughout 1945 but a posting to General Dempsey’s reformed Middle East Land Forces Command offered an opportunity for temporary promotion and he was serving there in July 1946 as a Major in the Royal Artillery, attached to Military Intelligence. During this time he assisted with the organisation of the Cairo Peace Conference (British Museum Accession Record). The posting may have been as a result of influence from his elder brother Harold, who had been a prominent Middle East diplomat but was now working for the Control Commission in Germany. By the end of the year he may have reverted to his still-substantive rank of Lieutenant, but was granted the rank of Honorary Captain upon demobilisation (1946 Army List).
Ingrams is an interesting case study in the changing character of the Auxiliary Units and any further information on his curious military career would be gratefully received.
May, H. Chirnside 1, Axminster 2014.