R. A. C.

DeLaMancha

Senior Member
Français de France
Hello everybody !
Will you kindly explain what do R.A.C mean during WW2 ?
My context is :
"My husband liked the army. He's the one on the right there. He had a good time in France till suddenly it all happened."
Curly crossed to the mantelpiece and looked at the smiling R..A.C. sergeant in this back beret.

Thanks
 
  • innosand

    Member
    French
    If the sergeant is French, which is probably the case (always this cliché about the beret !), it probably means Régiment d'Artillerie de Campagne.
     

    DeLaMancha

    Senior Member
    Français de France
    Thanks, Grop and Innosand.
    I think Grop is right as my Sergent is in the Welsh Army. Sorry I didn't mentioned it !
    Grop : this link is very interesting, thank you very much
     

    gasman

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    Actually R.A.C. does not apply to the Royal Armoured Corps; It is written as RAC, just the Highland Light Infantry appears as HLI. Also the Welsh don't, and didn't, have an army of their own; there might still be Welsh, or Welch, units, but that I don't know.
     

    gasman

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    I am equally sure that they didn't. Certainly not on the badges, as you may find if you Google them, but not in their title either, to the best of my recollection-neither the RAC nor the AA.
     

    katie_here

    Senior Member
    England/English
    I am equally sure that they didn't. Certainly not on the badges, as you may find if you Google them, but not in their title either, to the best of my recollection-neither the RAC nor the AA.
    The RAC and the AA are breakdown recovery services for cars. The Royal Automobile Club and the Automobile Association.

    Are you sure it's not the Royal Artillery Corps?
     

    liliput

    Senior Member
    U.K. English
    I think the most likely explanation is that it refers to the Royal Armoured Corps. They're the ones with the tanks. They were certainly in France during WWII. The fact that the author may have chosen to write it with or without full stops seems to me a trifling distinction. The author may have simply made a mistake.

    The reference to a beret is not national stereotyping (as evinced by the fact that the soldier is Welsh not French), it's standard military uniform. As Gasman says, a Welsh soldier would fight in the British Army.
     

    gasman

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    Are you sure it's not the Royal Artillery Corps?

    Absolutely.

    I quote:-

    On 1 July 1899, the Royal Artillery was divided into three groups: the Royal Horse Artillery and Royal Field Artillery comprised one group, while the coastal defence, mountain, siege and heavy batteries were split off into another group named the Royal Garrison Artillery. The third group continued to be titled simply Royal Artillery, and was responsible for ammunition storage and supply. Which section a gunner belonged to was indicated by collar badges (RA., RA., RHA., or RGA.). The RFA and RHA also dressed as mounted men, whereas the RGA dressed like foot soldiers.
    << Excess quoted text deleted by moderator. >>
    Source
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    liliput

    Senior Member
    U.K. English
    The RAC and the AA are breakdown recovery services for cars. The Royal Automobile Club and the Automobile Association.

    Are you sure it's not the Royal Artillery Corps?
    As far as I'm aware, there is no Royal Artillery Corps. There is a Royal Regiment of Artillery and the Royal Horse Artillery. The Royal Armoured Corps is the only British Army unit I can find with the initials RAC.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Just a post-script: the author probably didn't make a mistake writing "RAC" with full stops - that was certainly possible in the 1940s, as this book title shows.
     

    gasman

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    Loob, I think that must have been a printers error, as at the end of the paragraph you quoted I found this " 52nd (Lowland) Reconnaissance Regiment, RAC." In fact I don't remember any British Army unit having its initials separated by full stops. RASC, HLI, RAMC, RAVC, etc..
     

    katie_here

    Senior Member
    England/English
    Does anyone think it might be prudent to actually ask the RAC if they have or have ever had full stops inbetween their initials, instead of second guessing each other? :)
     

    liliput

    Senior Member
    U.K. English
    There are many examples of them being referred to as the RAC. Personally, I consider the fact that someone chose to include full-stops to be of little importance.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Does anyone think it might be prudent to actually ask the RAC if they have or have ever had full stops inbetween their initials, instead of second guessing each other? :)
    I don't think we need to do that, katie: I'm sure DeLaMancha has the right answer:)
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Sorry, I really don't want to prolong the discussion. But just let me make clear that in my "postcript" I wasn't arguing with gasman over whether the RAC itself had ever used full-stops - I was simply saying that in the 1940s, it was possible for people writing about the RAC to do so.

    As liliput says, the full stop issue is not an important one!
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top