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South African Armed Forces

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Brief Description

91 Ammunition Depot
91 Ammunition Depot [Afr: 91 Ammunisiedepot] was originally established as a magazine in 1896 at Pretoria, on Magazine Hill [Afr: Magasynheuwel], near the Red Magazine [Afr: Rooi Magasyn], and was also know at the time as Central Magazine [from the Dutch: Zentraalmagazyn] until, at 3am on the 1st of March, 1945, a mysterious explosion of the Grand Magazine and South African Mint Loading Field that killed 34 people left the entire site in total desolation. The madazines at Magazine Hill were not to be rebuilt and Ammuniktion Depots were to be re-established in low-populated areas. In 1960 all ammunition production and manufacturing processes ceased on Magazine Hill and the site was locked down until 1994. 91 Ammunition Depot was re-established at Roedtan, near Naboomspruit, in the Northern Transvaal (now Limpopo) and occupied an area of 3 895 ha. It was placed under the direct command of the Quartermaster General's Headquarters until the closure of the QMG in 1990, when the unit was transferred to the SA Army Logistics Command.

92 Ammunition Depot
92 Ammunition Depot [Afr: 92 Ammunisiedepot] was established as a ammunition dump in a former coal mine near Witbank, in the Eastern Transvaal (now Mpumalanga), and placed under the direct control of the Quartermaster General's Headquarters until the closure of the QMG in 1990, when it was transferred to the SA Army Logistics Command. The depot was used for ammunition storage until 1993 and was even used for former nuclear weapons storage during the SADFs former nuclear programme. After 1994 92 Ammunition Depot was amalgamaned with 91 Ammunition Depot as part of the rationalization process of the SADF before it became the South Afican National Defence Force (SANDF)

93 Ammunition Depot
93 Ammunition Depot [Afr: 93 Ammunisiedepot] was build at Jan Kempdorp during the Second World War, in 1941, basically in the centre of South Africa's geographic centre, to be out of reach of Japanese bombers coming in from the coast. and the because it of the existing railway line linking the area to Durban, Port Elizabeth and Cape Town. Jan Kempdorp was in the Northern Cape and occupied an area of some 6 500ha. The Union also build a depot in the same area, The British Royal Navy Ammo Depot, and in the later 50's the depots joined and took on the current name and was placed under the direct control of the Quartermaster General's Headquarters until the closure of the QMG in 1990, when it was transferred to the Northen Cape Command with only functional responsibility to Army Log Command. The main purpose of the base was to look after the ammunition for the Army, and to destroy old ammo.

95 Ammunition Depot
95 Ammunition Depot [Afr: 95 Ammunisiedepot] at the Lenz Military Base was placed under the direct control of the Quartermaster General's Headquarters between 1980 and 1985. It was better known as the Lenz Ammunitiun Depot (also Naschem Lenz Storage Facilities). It is uncertain whether it was transferred to the SA Army Logistics Command after the closure of the Quartermaster General in 1990.

97 Ammunition Depot
97 Ammunition Depot [Afr: 97 Ammunisiedepot] was built at De Aar in the Northern Cape Province and occupied an area of some 6 284ha. The depot consists of 186 magazines that houses different types of ammunition. It is the size of 29 rugby fields and has a 49km rail network. The depot was placed under the direct control of the Quartermaster General's Headquarters until the closure of the QMG in 1990, when it was transferred to the SA Army Logistics Command. The main purpose of the base was to look after the ammunition for the Army, and to destroy old ammo.

Lenz Military Base*
The Lenz Military Base [Afr: Lenz Militêre Basis] was a military area of some 79732 m², in Lenasia. 3 SAI's first headquarters was established at Lenz in March 1962. 21 SAI was established at Lenz in 1977. It was also the site of the Quartermaster General's 95 Ammunition Depot (also known as the Naschem Lenz Storage Facilities). The Group 42 Headquarters, which formed part of the Witwatersrand Command of the Territorial Force of the SA Army, was located here as well.

SA Army Logistics Command
Army Logistics Command was established directly under the command of the Chief of the Army, to support both the Territorial Force and the Conventional Force of the SA Army. Its primary role was the effective acquisition, receipt, storing, safekeeping, preservation, maintenance, accounting, distribution and disposal of clothing, accommodation, ammunition, vehicles, fuel and spares within the SA Army.

SAS Somerset
The South African Ship Somerset, with Pennant Z185, was built in Blyth, Northumberland, by Blyth Shipbuilding Company and commissioned as HMS Barrcross into the Royal Navy in 1941. In 1946 Barcross was purchased by the South African Government and was used for the dumping of ammunition off Cape Town and Port Elizabeth. On completion of these services, she was transferred to Salisbury Island in Durban and was subsequently laid up at Salisbury Island. In 1951 her name was changed to Somerset. In 1953 whilst still decommissioned Somerset was used in the raising of the sunken minelayer Skilpad (ex:Spindrift) at Salisbury Island. During 1955 Somerset was brought back into service. In 1988 the old boom defence vessel was donated as a museum ship, moored at the waterfront at Cape Town.

South African Ammunition Corps
The South African Ammunition Corps (SA Ammo C) [Afr: Suid-Afrikaanse Ammunisiekorps (SA Ammu K)]




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Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET
Images from 'Grensoorlog' series, produced by Linda de Jager, reproduced with kind permission from MNET

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