The ML was cleared to fire the standard 50mm High-Explosive projectile, suitable for dislodging or killing enemy troop concentrations, and illumination and smoke rounds also did their part when called upon. Each projectile generally weighed in at 2.25lbs each. The ML crew could set up smoke screens to cover the movement of allied personnel or illuminate the night sky to expose advancing enemy troops. In either case, the mortar crew was an integral part of any infantry action. Ammunition was supplied in three conjoined transport tubes each containing three 50mm projectiles. This ensured a healthy initial ammunition supply for the mortar team with resupply handled from outside sources as available. Range of the weapon was out to 500 yards.
A typical ML mortar team arrangement consisted of two specially trained personnel made up of the firer and the loader. The firer was responsible for the transportation of the mortar system while the loader saw to the care and maintenance of the ammunition supply. In combat, the loader also assisted in the spotting of falling shells to direct the firer as needed and could take over the firer's role should he become incapacitated. The mortar system's light nature made it highly portable and easy to conceal for rapid relocation and ambush. Needless to say, a well-trained and combat experienced mortar crew was a rather lethal tactical component to the actions of allied infantry personnel they supported.
Two main forms of the ML 2-inch mortar were delivered to the British Army. These were differentiated by their baseplates - small and large in general size. The smaller version was utilized by standard infantry-level mortar team personnel while the larger, heavier version was suitable for firing from vehicles (though these could be set along the ground as well). The Bren Universal Carrier tracked vehicle proved suitable as a gunnery platform for such usage.
The Ordnance ML 2-inch Mortar was utilized by the British Army as well as Commonwealth forces throughout World War 2 and beyond. Despite its 1930s origins, it can still be found in developing parts of the world even today.