Armed Forces Strength, Britain

 

Armed Forces
'000 Royal Navy Army Royal Air Force Total
1939        
September 180 897 193 1,270
December 214 1,128 215 1,557
         
1940        
March 241 1,361 240 1,842
June 271 1,650 291 2,212
September 307 1,888 420 2,615
December 333 2,075 491 2,899
         
1941        
March 365 2,166 559 3,090
June 395 2,221 662 3,278
September 424 2,292 767 3,483
December 449 2,340 813 3,602
         
1942        
March 477 2,397 816 3,690
June 496 2,453 835 3,784
September 529 2,494 895 3,918
December 566 2,566 936 4,068
         
1943        
March 610 2,628 948 4,186
June 660 2,673 967 4,300
September 710 2,679 982 4,371
December 756 2,680 999 4,435
         
1944        
March 768 2,680 1,000 4,448
June 778 2,720 1,002 4,500
September 776 2,741 992 4,509
December 780 2,760 985 4,525
         
1945        
March 781 2,802 970 4,553
June 783 2,920 950 4,653

 

Women's Auxiliary Services
'000 Women's Royal Naval Service Auxiliary Territorial Service Women's Auxiliary Air Force Nursing Services Total
1939          
September 1.6 n/a n/a 2.4 n/a
December 3.4 23.9 8.8 7.0 43.1
           
1940          
March 4.4 n/a 8.9 8.2 n/a
June 5.6 36.1 11.9 7.6 56.6
September 7.9 36.4 17.4 7.9 69.3
December 10.0 37.5 20.5 8.2 75.1
           
1941          
March 12.3 37.5 27.0 9.0 85.8
June 15.1 42.8 37.4 10.0 105.3
September 18.0 65.0 64.1 10.4 157.5
December 21.6 85.1 98.4 10.9 216.0
           
1942          
March 24.8 111.1 110.8 11.9 258.6
June 28.6 140.2 125.7 13.0 307.5
September 33.5 162.2 141.5 13.9 351.1
December 39.3 180.7 166.0 14.6 400.6
           
1943          
March 45.0 195.3 180.1 15.5 435.9
June 53.3 210.3 181.6 16.4 461.6
September 60.4 212.5 180.3 17.5 470.7
December 64.8 207.5 176.8 18.4 467.5
           
1944          
March 68.6 206.2 175.7 18.3 468.8
June 73.5 199.0 174.4 19.5 466.4
September 74.0 198.2 171.2 20.3 463.7
December 73.4 196.4 166.2 21.1 457.1
           
1945          
March 73.2 195.3 159.7 21.5 449.7
June 72.0 190.8 153.0 21.4 437.2

 

Home Guard
'000 Men Women Total
1940      
June 1,456 - 1,456
       
1941      
June 1,603 - 1,603
December 1,530 - 1,530
       
1942      
June 1,565 - 1,565
December 1,741 - 1,741
       
1943      
March 1,793 - 1,793
June 1,784 4 1,788
September 1,769 16 1,785
December 1,754 22 1,776
       
1944      
March 1,739 28 1,767
June 1,727 31 1,758
September 1,698 32 1,730
December 1,685 - 1,685

 

Royal Observer Corps
'000 Full-Time Men Full-Time Women Full-Time Men Full-Time Women Total
1940          
June 2.3 - 25.6 - 27.9
           
1941          
June 4.0 - 29.3 - 33.2
December 4.4 - 30.0 0.4 34.8
           
1942          
June 5.1 0.2 28.0 0.8 34.0
December 5.5 0.4 25.6 0.9 32.4
           
1943          
March 5.7 0.7 25.2 1.1 32.8
June 5.9 1.0 24.8 1.2 32.9
September 6.2 1.4 24.1 1.3 32.9
December 6.4 2.1 23.2 1.3 33.0
           
1944          
March 6.5 2.5 22.4 1.4 32.8
June 6.4 2.6 22.1 1.5 32.7
September 6.4 2.8 21.9 1.5 32.5
December 6.5 2.9 21.4 1.4 32.2
           
1945          
March 6.5 3.0 21.2 1.4 32.1
June 5.7 2.1 0.9 - 8.7

 

Notes:

(1) All figures at end of month.

(2) Armed Forces excludes men locally enlisted abroad.

(3) Women's Auxiliary Services inclues women locally enlisted abroad.

(4) Royal Navy includes men serving with the Royal Navy on T.124 agreements, Royal Marine Police and, up to June 1941, prisoners-of-war and missing.

(5) Army includes men serving with the India Unattached List, but excluding the British Indian Service. Men locally enlisted abroad are included up to September 1941.

(6) Auxiliary Territorial Service excludes thos locally enlisted abroad on modified forms of Auxiliary Territorial Service engagements whose documents were maintained outside the United Kingdom. From June 1944 all women locall enlisted abroad whose documents were maintained outside the United Kingdom are excluded.

(7) Nursing Services includes Queen's Army Schoolmistresses.

(8) Royal Observer Corps figures before 1942 are estimated.

Source: Statistical Digest of the War: History of the Second World War.