This takes its name from the STEN – a submachine gun – once produced nearby at the former Royal Small Arms Factory where it was created and manufactured from 1941 and continued to be produced until the early 1950s – though it was used around the world for many years afterwards. Despite its flaws, its simple design and low cost made the STEN gun easy to make en masse, essential to replace the huge number of weapons lost during the evacuation of Dunkirk. STEN is an acronym of the names of its chief designers, Major Reginald V Shepherd and Harold Turpin, and EN for Enfield. The gun was used throughout the Second World War, with thousands being dropped to resistance fighters in France. It was replaced by the Sterling submachine gun from 1953 and was gradually withdrawn from British service in the 1960s.
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