THE ROYAL GREEN JACKETS
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE REGIMENT
The Formation and Origins of the Regiment
On 1st January 1966 The Royal Green Jackets was formed as a single Large Regiment. Its creation followed logically from the composition of The Green Jackets Brigade in 1958, which grouped together three single-battalion infantry regiments:,
|THE OXFORDSHIRE AND BUCKINGHAMSHIRE LIGHT INFANTRY (43rd & 52nd)||THE KINGS ROYAL RIFLE CORPS (60th)||THE RIFLE BRIGADE|
A FAMILY TREE OF THESE REGIMENTS AND THEIR ANTECEDENTS
It was no accident that these particular regiments, each having had such a distinguished record in the past, should have progressively, voluntarily and successfully come together, avoiding the stresses which often accompany amalgamations, because they shared a large measure of their history and their traditions. They, and The Royal Green Jackets as their heir, lay claim to being the innovators who developed much of the new thinking in the British Infantry in the fields of tactics, training, equipment and man-management from the mid-eighteenth century onwards.
The leadership of such distinguished officers as Henri Bouquet, Francis de Rottenburg, Coote Manningham and Sir John Moore generated a succession of advanced ideas later to be adopted as ideals by the rest of the Army: open-order tactics and mobility in place of rigid drills and ponderous movement, camouflage and concealment in place of serried ranks of red coats, individual marksmanship in place of massed musket fire, and intelligence and self-reliance in place of blind obedience instilled by fear of brutal punishment. These themes are recorded in the stories of four regiments whose fortunes were often closely linked to the point where they fuse together in The Royal Green Jackets today.
On 1 January 1966 the regiments of The Green Jackets Brigade took a further step forward by transforming themselves into the three battalions of a single `Large Regiment`: The Royal Green Jackets. And so the individual identities of their famous forebears were merged into a single whole, and in a few short years a whole generation has grown up owing no separate allegiances, only a single one to the new Regiment.
Since The Royal Green Jackets was formed, a new area of conflict has opened in the shape of Northern Ireland and all battalions have taken their turn as resident units or on emergency tours of duty. To the residue of overseas garrisons of the immediate post-war years, such as Hong Kong and Gibraltar, new ones have been added in Belize and the Falklands, and all of these have seen Green Jackets since the Regiment was formed, while the countries to which whole battalions or small parties have travelled on exercises range from the USA and Canada to Morocco, Jordan, Kenya and Nepal, to mention but a few. Though The Royal Green Jackets once more find themselves at a point in their history where no specialised role distinguishes them from others, they stand prepared to take the lead whenever the evolution of the military environment so demands. What is certain is that their originality of thinking and fostering of the family spirit still mark them out as exceptional.
MAIN BATTLE HONOURS WORN ON THE REGIMENTAL CAPBADGE:
Quebec 1759, Copenhagen, Corunna, Badajoz, Salamanca, Vittoria, Peninsula, Waterloo,Inkerman, Delhi 1857, Afghanistan 1878-80, Defence of Ladysmith, Ypres, Nonne Boschen, Somme, Calais 1940, Pegasus Bridge, El Alamein.
|The Rearguard by JP
Brigadier General Crauford with his rearguard on the retreat to Vigo in December 1808; 2nd Bn 95th Rifles, 43rd and 52nd Light Infantry.
Coutesy RGJ Museum
THE GREEN JACKET LEGACY
Arrangements of `Huntsman`s Chorus` & `Italian Song`
`The Road to The Isles`
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