Military Forces

The Blues and Royals Regiment

The Blues and Royals regiment is made up of the Royal Horse Guards (RHG) and the 1st Dragoons. They are a cavalry regiment in the British Army and, along with The Life Guards, make up the Household Cavalry Regiment. The British Household Cavalry is classed as a corps in its own right. Together the two regiments which make up the Household Cavalry, act as the Queen’s personal bodyguard. In 1969 the merger of the Royal Horse Guards, which were then known as “The Blues”, and The Royal Dragoons, which was known as “The Royals”, formed The Blues and Royals. The regiment is the only regiment in the British Army to be known by their nickname. Their Colonel-in-Chief is Queen Elizabeth II and is the second most senior regiment in the British Army. Both Prince William and Prince Harry joined the regiment as cornets in 2006. Due to their role as the monarch’s official bodyguard, this historically meant that the soldiers and officers of [...]

75th Anniversary of VE Day

This year marks the 75th Anniversary of VE, or Victory in Europe Day. On 8th May 1945, Winston Churchill made an announcement on the radio at 3pm after enemy forces had surrendered the previous day. He said, “My dear friends, this is your house.” This year on the 8th May 2020 it will be 75 years since the guns fell silent and marked the end of World War II. To commemorate the event, this year’s May Day Bank Holiday has been moved. Usually the May Day Bank Holiday is the first Monday of May, however this year the date has been moved to Friday 8th May to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day. Events will take place around the country over weekend from the 8th May to the 10th May 2020 to mark the enormous sacrifice, courage and determination shown by those who served and the millions who lost their loved ones in the conflict.  If you wish to find out more [...]

Mess Dress Uniform

Mess dress uniform is not to be confused with full dress uniform. Mess dress is the semi-formal uniform worn by the military, police and other public uniformed services. The uniform is worn for certain ceremonies and celebrations on private occasions.  Design may vary but they mainly consist of a mess jacket, trousers, white dress shirt and are worn with medals or other insignia. Mess dress is seen as an alternative to black tie for evening wear and is sometimes known as half dress. Mess dress is worn predominantly by commissioned officers and non-commissioned officers. It can however be worn by some senior enlisted personnel.  The Royal Navy has two forms of evening dress. Mess dress (No. 2A) consists of a mess jacket, plain navy blue mess trousers, white waistcoat and black bow tie. The mess undress (No. 2B) consists of a mess jacket, plain navy blue mess trousers, blue waistcoat or black cummerbund and a black bow tie.  Officers in the Royal Navy [...]

The Life Guards Regiment

The Life Guards (LG), along with The Blues & Royals, are the most senior regiments in the British Army. Together they form the Household Cavalry Regiment (HCav).  The regiment was formed in  1660 by King Charles II. It consisted of 80 Royalists  who accompanied the King and formed themselves into a military bodyguard to protect The Sovereign. The regiment has always remained the senior regiment of the British Army.  The regiment was nicknamed the ‘Cheesemongers’ in the 1780’s. After originally, only recruiting gentlemen-troops, the regiment allowed members of the common merchant class to join. ‘Cheesemongers’ was a pejorative term for the people who worked in a trade.  In 1815 the regiment were a part of the Household Brigade at the Battle of Waterloo. Under Major- General Lord Edward Somerset the regiment charged at the French heavy cavalry equivalents, along with the then, Royal Horse Guards. In 1922 the regiment became known as The Life Guards. In 1992 the Life Guards and The [...]

Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday 2019

Remembrance Sunday, will be held on Sunday 10th November. The National Service of remembrance will be  held at the Cenotaph at Whitehall in London at 11am. The service honours the service and sacrifices of the Armed Forces who fought in the two World Wars and any other conflicts. This yearly remembrance ensures no one is forgotten and honours those who sacrificed themselves to protect our freedom.  Every year up to 10,000 veterans, current serving Armed Forces personnel and bereaved spouses and first generation descendants take part in the March Past. From 9am on the 10th November the Royal British Legion detachments  form up on Horse Guards Parade. At 10am the March Past begins then at 11am there is a two minute silence in which the whole country falls silent to remember those who gave their lives. The beginning and the end of the silence is marked at 11.00 and 11.02 by the firing of  guns by the Kings Troop at [...]

Operation Market Garden

This year, the 17th of September, marked the 75th anniversary of Operation Market Garden. This World War II mission was fought in the Netherlands from 17th – 25th September 1944. Market Garden consisted of two sub operations. Market was an airborne assault to seize key bridges and Garden which was a ground  attack moving over the already seized bridges creating the salient, or inroad into enemy held territory Up until that point, this attack was the largest airborne operation, in World War II. The operation was the idea of General Bernard Montgomery. It began with heavy air raids, with para troopers landing around 13:00 hours. The initial phase of the operation was a success as the Germans were taken completely by surprise. Even though the resistance by the Germans was heavier than expected, most of the bridges were captured. The most important bridge, Arnhem, was the most strategically placed and in order for this mission to be successful the ground [...]

The Royal Logistic Corps

The Royal Logistic Corps (RLC) is not only the largest Corps in the British Army, it is also an incredibly diverse organisation. Its soldiers work on both peacekeeping and on operations. The RLC’s main function is to provide constant support to help the Army maintain its optimum operational capability. The RLC was formed in 1993 by a union of five units; the Royal Corps of Transport, Royal Army Ordnance Corps, Royal Pioneer Corps, Army Catering Corps and the Postal and Courier Service which were previously part of the Royal Engineers. Currently the RLC are deployed in Cyprus, Kenya, Canada and the Caribbean. Their current deployment to Cyprus is a 6 month peacekeeping mission as part of the UN peacekeeping agreement. Previously they have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. Soldiers in the Royal Logistic Corps are infantry trained. They are also professionally trained in one of 12 trades. 40% of the RLC is detached and serves with other units. The RLC flag is [...]

Military Regiments

Six Military Units you never knew existed.

Classic military units differ in their specialization and size from country to country. Here are some Military Units you probably didn’t know existed. Lovat scouts (United Kingdom) Frederick Burnham, was the Commander of the Scottish Highland Regiment. He formed the Lovat Scouts in 1900 to fight in the Second Boer War. They became known as one of the first heavily camouflaged units during the First World War. Their suit, know are a Ghillie suit, was designed to resemble the background environment, such as sand or snow.  Most of the regiment’s soldiers were gamekeepers from big Scottish estates and were known for their shooting skills so not surprisingly, in 1916 the military unit became the British Army’s first sniper unit.  61st Cavalry Regiment (India) Formed in 1953, the 61st Cavalry Regiment is the largest cavalry regiment in the World that isn’t ceremonial and is fully operational. The Regiment is made up of 270 men and is the only regiment that reserves a third of its [...]

Combined Arms Manouvre Demonstration 2016

The Kings Royal Hussars

The King’s Royal Hussars are a regiment with cavalry traditions and an interesting history. The King’s Royal Hussars were established in 1992, however the four original cavalry regiments which make up the modern King’s Royal Hussars have a long history of service with their own customs and traditions.  The origins of the regiment stretch right back to 1715 when the 10th, 11th and 14th Hussars were raised to serve in the two Jacobite Rebellions. In 1854 the 11th Hussars took part in the infamous Charge of the Light Brigade during the Crimea campaign. The various regimens went through numerous changes over the years culminating in 1992 with the merging of the Royal Hussars and the 14th/20th Hussars into the Kings Royal Hussars we see today. The regiment is located at Aliwal Barracks in Tidworth, they are experts in operating a range of armored vehicles including the Challenger 2 battle tank which is used to support troops on close combat operations and the Scimitar [...]

Grenadier Guards

Military Sword Belt Ensembles

Sword belts in the military are worn around the waist, their purpose being to hold a ceremonial sword. There are various styles of belts available, some which ore worn over the tunic, such as the Sam Browne, the RAF Officers and the Naval Officers.  Sword belts can have several components; as well as the waist belt, there are also sword slings, or a sword frog for retaining the scabbard. Often there is a shoulder belt worn with the ensemble to prevent the weight of the sword pulling down the belt. This can also, be achieved by the belts being held in place by hooks on the tunic. Swords can be worn in two positions, raised or hooked up, where the scabbard or frog is attached to a hook to raise the sword to stop it trailing. Alternatively, they can be worn down hanging from the slings or the frog. Sword belt ensembles can be made from a number of materials, but are primarily made from leather, webbing, PVC, or a combination.  Sword belt styles [...]