The Rifle Platoon was the main fighting arm of the Rifle Company and, therefore, the backbone of the British Infantry. The Platoon consisted of around 35 men, though this varied with sickness, injury etc. The Platoon was commanded by an Officer and divided into three sections as illustrated below.
The below armament and ammunition allowance are meant for guidance only and, in reality, would differ depending on a number of factors.
1 Officer (usually 2nd Lieutenant or Lieutenant) armed with Sten Machine Carbine.
1 Sergeant armed with Sten Gun.
1 Batman/Runner armed with rifle and PIAT.
1 Signaller with WS38.
2 x 2 inch mortar team (2 man) and rifles.
Infantry Section (x3)
1 Corporal armed with Sten Machine Carbine. Section Commander.
1 Lance Corporal armed with No 4 Mk 1 Rifle. Section Second in Command, Bren team commander. Carries additional magazines for Bren.
1 Infantryman armed with Bren Light Machine Gun.
1 Infantryman Bren Number 2. Armed with No 4 Mk 1 Rifle. Also carries magazines and barrel for Bren.
6 Infantrymen armed with No 4 Mk 1 Rifle.
All rifle-armed infantry in the platoon carry 60 rounds .303 ball, 2 Mills bombs and 2 x 30 round Bren magazines. Additionally, the Bren Number 2 and Lance Corporal usually carry 4 additional Bren magazines as extra.
The 2" Mortar crew would dispense with the Bren magazines in favour of mortar bombs.