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The North West Frontier of India circa 1940

Wucha Jawar Camp

We recently came across some photos in an old family album which suggested an uncle did a tour of duty with the Indian Army in either the 1930s or possibly during WWII. The small photos are about the size of 127 roll film negatives and not very sharp but we thought someone might be interested to see them!

The first photo is of the camp sign, which shows the distances to Peshawar, Bombay, London and Halifax. The distance to Peshawar was only 42 miles and so we know the camp was on the North West Frontier of India (now in Pakistan) not far from the Khyber Pass and the border with Afghanistan.

Wucha Jawar Camp sign

In the photo above you can just make out a group of camels and on the right hand edge of the photo there seem to be some army lorries.

Our uncle appears in the photo below.

Jock

In the photo below he is standing by a field gun which we think might be a QF 3.7 inch Mountain Howitzer. These were designed towards the end of WWI,

It therefore seems likely that he was with a Royal Field Artillery battery, though possibly he was just visiting.

Jock and 3.7 inch mountain Howitzer

The camp appears to be on a flat plain surrounded by mountains. See photo of soldiers below.

British oldiers with pith helmets

Here is a photo of one of the Indian soldiers.

Indian soldier

In earlier days the British army was not keen for Indian troops to man the guns, but by the time of the photo below this policy had obviously changed.

More field guns

The photo below shows our uncle (wearing the helmet) with a colleague who may have been an officer as you can just make out pips on his epaulette.

Jock with a colleague

The next photo shows some 'native' troops digging in, which must have been extremely hard work in the rocky groud. You can see pick axes lying on the ground, but what we found interesting was that the soldiers are wearing pointed fur hats and we wondered to what contingent they belonged. Do you know?

Digging in

The final photo shows a large group of soldiers, possibly practicing drill against the backdrop of the mountains.

Indian army soldiers on north west frontier

If you know more about the history of the camp at Wucha Jawar and why the troops were there, or knew someone who was there, or can provide additional information for this page, we would like to here from you.

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