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C542776 WD Motorcycle


I hope that some one can help me, my father served as a Despatch Rider with 25 Base Signals Section, Royal Signals during WW2. He took part in the D Day landings and landed at Gold Beach.

I have a copy of his Army Record which mentions that on October 12th 1945, he had a stoppage of of £2 towards the replacement of WD M/C C542776.

Can anyone shed some light on the history of this Motorbike please?

Many Thanks,

David Kirkwood.

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Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle

Hello David, there are few surviving vehicle records to shed any light and in the case of this serial, it seems to be missing one digit...If the last digit is missing then it was a Triumph 3HW from contract S2956 - Serials C5423418 - C5428417. There are no earlier six-digit numbers beginning 542 that apply to motorcycles...

I would have suggested looking at War Diaries, including attached REME units etc., but I see that you enquired via WW2talk forum and failed there to find out anything about 25 Base Signals Section. If I were you, I might be inclined to obtain a copy of the diary for 24 Base Sigs and at least find out where in the establishment they sat.

The answer must be out there somewhere !

Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle

Hi David

Fascinating, could you share the original document with us?


email (option): robmiller11(a)

Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle

I hope that David won't mind me posting this as it has already been shared on the internet. It's easier than posting a link to the original pdf.


Any ideas, Rob as to the function of a Base Signals Unit and why I can't find them in an establishment anywhere ?

Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle

If you zoom in and look closely at that number. It looks to me like it should have been written up with triple 7 but only written up with double 7 and the missing 7 has been added/squeezed in after the 2.???? that would make it the 4359th Triumph 3HW from the 5000 under contract S2956.


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Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle

I wondered about that, Ron but decided it looked more like the tail of the 'f' from the line above. If it's a '7' then it's a different style. It doesn't work as '1542776' as that falls outside of the rebuilds and '4542776' is not a motorcycle either so I'm sure that it was one of the 3HW contract.

Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle


Sorry for the delay in answering you, many thanks for posting, it saved me!

I appreciate the comments for you and Rob, unfortunately I still can't get any information on his unit.

Re: C542776 WD Motorcycle

Reading this made me smile. My father claimed to have lost one of his bikes, but I'm sure he would have sold it! Other riders had came to an unpleasant end. I expect his idea was that if the bike was "stolen" his punishment would be not to be given another. Sadly there is no record of him ever serving, only a small collection of "military holiday snaps" that only really make sense now I have identified a shoulder patch.

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