Churchill's British Resistance - The Auxiliary Units


Teignmouth Auxiliary Unit Patrol Known as as “The Original Kernals Pals”

Thank you for selecting information on the Teignmouth Auxiliary Unit and Operational Base. The info and images below have been supplied by CART's Devon CIO Nina Hannaford.

This page was last updated at 1:15pm on 28/8/13

Research into this patrol and its training is ongoing. The information below is published from various sources and is by no means conclusive. If information is not listed below it does not necessarily mean the information is not out there but normally means CART researchers have not found it yet.

If you have any information on this patrol or can help with research in this area please do contact us.

Teignmouth is a town on the north bank of the River Teign Estuary. Originally a fishing port with docks it is also a popular tourist resort.

From the information received so far all the Patrols of Group 5 (Dawlish, Teignmouth and Starcross) seem to have worked and trained very closely together. Looking at the names and addresses on the Nominal Rolls it is almost impossible to make three distinctly separate patrols.

Each Patrol therefore, has been compiled by their group photograph where available. This may have lead to errors as to which Auxilier is recorded in which Patrol.

Please contact Nina Hannaford on if you have any information to help.

From the very first meeting in Whitehall in July 1940 the Intelligence Officer for Devon and Cornwall (named Auxiliary Units SW Area) was Captain (later Major, then Colonel) J W Stuart Edmundson, an officer in the Royal Engineers. He liaised with the regular army and received supplies and equipment and formed all the Patrols. He was assisted by Lieutenant (later Captain) John “Jack” Dingley who became IO for Cornwall in 1943 though he may have assumed the roll before that.

In November 1943 Devon and Cornwall were separated and Edmundson was succeeded in Cornwall by Captain John Dingley and in Devon by Major W W “Bill” Harston who would remain in command until near stand down. At the end of Harston's command he would cover “No 4 Region” being the whole of the South West Peninsular and Wales.

The IOs were being withdrawn from around August 1944 leaving the Area and Group Commanders.

After 1941 a “grouping” system was developed where some patrols within a demographic area would train together under more local command.

At Stand Down, Devon is registered as area 16. Teignmouth is part of Group 5 along with Starcross and Dawlish. The Group Commander is Lieutenant A W Eardley of Dawlish.

The South Devon Area Commander is Captain Cyril Wellington originally of Plympton Patrol.

Reg McClaughlin Auxiliary Resistance

Group 5 Devon 203

Back Row Left to right (Teignmouth Patrol in bold)

Bill Leyman,  Ernie Glover,  Unknown,  Ernest Mummery,  Jeff Goodridge,  Jim Burch,  Cecil Hatherley,  Tom Weeks

Middle Row

Jack Addison,  Reg McClaughlin,  Herbert Thorp,  Fred Goodridge,  Fred Mortimore,  Albert Trapnell,  Henry Blackmore,  Unknown

Front Row

Arthur Carpenter,  Reggie Penaligion,  Cecil Gilpin,  Lt. Alfred Eardley,  Theodore Manning,  Eddie Goldsworthy,  Norman Rowe

 Currently unknown.

Lieutenant Alfred W Eardley (included in this Patrol as he is pictured with this group)
Sergeant Cecil Gilpin
Corporal Arthur Carpenter
Cecil Hatherley
William “Bill” Leyman
Ernest “Ernie” Gover
Reginald “Reggie” Penaligion
Tom Weeks
Albert Trapnell. Records show he was transferred to the 12th (Corsham) Wiltshire Battalion Home Guard in November 1943.

Teignmouth Auxiliary Unit Patrol 1

Teignmouth Patrol

Back row left to right:
Ernie Glover,  Cecil Gilpin,  Lt Alfred Eardley,  Arthur Carpenter,  Albert Trapnell

Cecil Hatherley,  Bill Leyman,  Reggie Penaligion, Tom Weeks.

Locations suggested have included the ice house at Luscombe Castle or in the woods behind though this seems to be too close to sea level and the fact that a school and Bernardo's home was in the house makes this unlikely.

Another suggestion is at Ashcombe Tower Plantation, near Castle Dyke. On higher ground this appears more likely and having an Iron Age fort in the area proves it has been a good defensive site for centuries.
The group photographs COULD have been taken on or around Little Haldon.

Please contact us if you can help.

Dawlish Auxiliary Unit Patrol 2

Copyright Dawlish Gazette Oct 1977 detailing Dawlish OB (Haldon, near racecourse) and Teignmouth OB is recorded as at Ashcombe Tower.

The railway line running through the town would have been a  suspected target. Running right along side the sea shore it often causes rail disruption to the rest of the SW in bad weather even today.
Trade at Teignmouth Docks was quite poor and was mostly used as a storage area. Even so, to put it out of action would have been an advantage.

Teignmouth Patrol's OB COULD have been near to RNAS Haldon Aerodrome ( HMS Heron II) making this Patrol the best to target the planes and/or runway.

Teignmouth Auxiliary Unit Patrol 2

Site of RNAS Haldon

Another possible target close by but maybe more suitable to the other Patrols, was the main road from Plymouth to Exeter.

Suspected training areas for all the Patrols of group 5 are the many forests and plantations on and around Great Haldon Ridge and around Little Haldon.

 Unknown, but it is assumed that they had the standard weapons and explosives issued to all patrols.

Eardley, Gilpin, Carpenter, Penaligion and Leyman were all awarded the defence medal after stand down. Cecil Hatherley was awarded it posthumously in 2000. His service record shows his Civil Defence Service from May 1940 transferring his service to “203 Auxiliary Bn 30th Oct 1942” though this is known to be a time when Auxiliers were taken off Home Guard registers.

A surprisingly large number of Group 5 were awarded the Defence Medal after stand down and it is rumoured that this was due to lobbying by Major Arnold Riley.

Lieutenant Eardley was a shopkeeper of a high class grocers and saw service in WW1.

Sergeant Gilpin served in WW1 in the Royal Army Service Copse. He ran Central Garage in Northumberland Street in Teignmouth. He was one of many that took his “little boat” to Dunkirk.
Cecil Hatherley was supposed to have not passed his medical for the Army due to one leg being shorter than the other leaving him with a slight limp. It was known that he went to Coleshill to train. He was a plumber and electrician.
Albert Trapnell worked at Willy's Foundry in Exeter in the gas department.
Bill Leyman served in France in WW2
Ernie Gover was a baker
Arthur Carpenter worked as a gardener in the nearby Langdon Hospital
Reg Penaligion ran a cycle shop and carried out repairs.

An (unrecorded) early member of the Auxiliary Units in the area was Major Arnold Riley (MM) later to be in command of “B” Company (Dawlish) 9th (Newton Abbot) Battalion Home Guard. He had a commissioned rank in the Warwickshire Regiment in WW1 and was a lecturer at Exeter University College. He is remembered as an officer, a true gentleman and a excellent communicator. He appears to have remained in contact with and supportive of the Patrols as he was a guest at their first reunion dinner at The Anchor Hotel Kennford in 1946.

A later reunion in December 1950 has Riley and Devon IO Edmundson as guests of honour. Footballer, Bert Hoyle, ex Exeter City and present Bristol Rovers was made an honorary Auxilier.

Dawlish Auxiliary Unit Patrol 4

Article from The Western Times 15th Dec 1950
At present it is unknown who Messrs. Base, Hopkins or Moore were or how Bert Hoyle was connected to the Patrols.

A surprisingly large number of Group 5 were awarded the Defence Medal after stand down and it is rumoured that this was due to lobbying by Major Arnold Riley.

TNA ref WO/199/3390
The Hancock data held at B.R.A.
Dawlish at War by Tricia Whiteway and Sheila Wain,  On Guard by AR Thompson both published by Dawlish Local History Group.
Tim Mole, Robin Thorp, Tricia Whiteway, Tim Whiteway,  Dawlish Gazette, The Western Times

If you can help with any info please contact Nina by emailing