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14th Brigade (Australia)
Active 1916–1943
Country Australia Australia
Branch Australian Army
Type Infantry
Size ~3,500 men
Engagements World War I

World War II

The 14th Brigade was an infantry brigade of the Australian Army. Formed in 1916 as part of the expansion of the 1st AIF it served on the Western Front in France and Flanders during World War I. Between 1916–1918 it consisted of the 53rd, 54th, 55tth and 56th Battalions and was assigned to the 5th Division.[1]

Later the 14th Brigade became part of the Militia and upon the outbreak of World War II the brigade consisted of the 3rd, 34th and 55th/53rd Battalions and was assigned to the 2nd Division.[2] Only one of the brigade's subordinate units saw active service while under its command. This was the 55th Battalion,[3] which was briefly delinked from the 53rd in October 1941 (with the 53rd being assigned to the 30th Brigade) and subsequently served in New Guinea from May to October 1942, undertaking garrison duties around Port Moresby and Milne Bay before carrying out patrols along the Goldie River Valley throughout September. In October 1942 they were amalgamated once again with the 53rd and together they were assigned to first the 30th Brigade for the remainder of their early service in New Guinea. In early 1943 this battalion was returned to Australia and from January to April 1943 they were reassigned to the 14th Brigade, however, in April 1943 they were assigned to the 11th Brigade[2] with whom they remained for the rest of the war.[3][4]

Other units that were assigned to the brigade around this time were the 36th Battalion (8 April 1941 – 14 December 1942 and then again 3 January 1943 – 24 April 1943), which replaced the 34th; the 49th Battalion (11–21 August 1942), the 39th Battalion (18–27 September 1942).[2] Its divisional assignments were changed a number of times after the outbreak of the war as it was moved from the 2nd Division to New Guinea Force in May 1942, the 7th Division in September 1942, the 11th Division in February 1943 and then finally to the 4th Division in March 1943.[2]

The 14th Brigade was eventually disbanded on 24 April 1943, as manpower shortages required the Australian Army to merge or disband a number of Militia formations to reallocate resources elsewhere. Upon disbandment, the brigade consisted of two battalions, the 55th/53rd and the 36th.[2]

Notes

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