Royal Army Service Corps

Royal Army Service Corps

Royal Army Service Corps

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Description:
The Royal Army Service Corps (RASC) was a corps of the British Army. It was responsible for land, coastal and lake transport; air despatch; supply of food, water, fuel, and general domestic stores such as clothing, furniture and stationery (but not ammunition and military and technical equipment, which were the responsibility of the Royal Army Ordnance Corps); administration of barracks; the Army Fire Service; and provision of staff clerks to headquarters units.

History

For centuries army transport was operated by contracted civilians. The first uniformed transport corps in the British Army was the Royal Waggoners, formed in 1794. It was not a success and was disbanded the following year. In 1799, the Royal Waggon Corps was formed; by August 1802, it had been renamed the Royal Waggon Train. This was reduced to only two troops in 1818 and finally disbanded in 1833.

A transport corps was not formed again until the Crimean War. In 1855, the Land Transport Corps was formed. This was renamed the Military Train the following year.

In 1869 there was a major reorganisation of army supply and transport capabilities. Before 1869, supply duties had been the responsibility of the Commissariat, a uniformed civilian body. In 1869 the commissaries of the Commissariat and the officers of the Military Train amalgamated into the Control Department. The following year the other ranks of the Military Train were redesignated the Army Service Corps (ASC), officered by the Control Department. In...
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