THE HISTORY OF THE LIGHT INFANTRY

THE ORIGINS OF THE LIGHT INFANTRY

FORMATION OF THE NEW REGIMENT

THE EARLY YEARS

THE YEARS OF CONSOLIDATION 1979-1989

OPTIONS FOR CHANGE AND AFTER

LIGHT INFANTRY DRESS REGULATIONS

THE REGIMENTS

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LI1

FORMATION OF THE NEW REGIMENT

The silver bugle cap badge, drill from the 'at ease' position, rapid marching pace and green beret bear testimony to the ancestry of The Light Infantry. Distinctions of dress serve as an ever-present reminder of the former great regiments; red backing to the cap badge from the DCLI sashes tied on the right from the SOM LI, the Inkerman chain from the DLI and the wearing of white roses on Minden Day from the KOYLI. The Regiment has the distinction of not being required to drink the Loyal Toast; a privilege, which had been conferred upon both the KSLI and the DLI.

On 22nd July each year the Regiment celebrates it’s Regimental Day, the anniversary of the Battle of Salamanca (I 812), a battle in which all the former regiments fought. The Light Infantry was intensely proud to have as its first Colonel-in-Chief Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, an association which began in 1927 when, as Duchess of York, Her Majesty became Colonel-in-Chief of the KOYLI. It was also the Regiment's very good fortune to have as Deputy Colonel in Chief, Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra, who had been Colonel-in Chief of the DLI. The Royal patrons have a prodigious knowledge of, and interest in, all branches of the Light Infantry family, and their concern for the Regiment is an inspiration and encouragement to Light Infantrymen everywhere.

Since 1968, when the Light Infantry was firmly established as a thoroughly professional regiment, rooted in the counties from which its predecessors sprang and from which, to this day, it still draws its fighting men. Emphasising this point, the volunteer Battalions now incorporate the County names, cementing the links with the past and identifying the Regiment to the area from which it recruits. As the 8th Battalion The Yorkshire Light Infantry changed its role to become a Reconnaissance Regiment under the operational control of the Director Royal Armoured Corps, the cap badge, the silver bugle, the green beret and the swift marching pace all serve to show the Regiments antecedents, and its ability to adhere in modern times to the concepts of forward thinking and adaptability espoused by General Sir John Moore in 1802.

THE LIGHT INFANTRY

Formed 10 July 1968 by conversion of the regiments of the Light Infantry Brigade into a Large Regiment.

REGULAR BATTALIONS

1st Battalion
Formed 10 July 1968 by redesignation of 1st Battalion The Somerset and Cornwall Light Infantry. 25 February 1993 disbanded.

2nd Battalion
Formed 10 July 1968 by redesignation of 1st Battalion The King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry. 25 February 1993 renumbered 1st Battalion.

3rd Battalion
Formed 10 July 1968 by redesignation of 1st Battalion The King's Shropshire Light Infantry. 25 February 1993 renumbered 2nd Battalion.

4th Battalion
Formed 10 July 1968 by redesignation of 1st Battalion The Durham Light Infantry. Disbanded 31 March 1969.

THE LIGHT INFANTRY VOLUNTEERS

Formed 1 April 1967 as Light Infantry Volunteers with Headquarters at Shrewsbury as TAVR II unit as the successor to 4th Battalion The King's Shropshire Light Infantry (TA), The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (TA), 4th Battalion The King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (TA), 1st Battalion The Herefordshire Light Infantry (TA) and 8th Battalion The Durham Light Infantry (TA).

HQ Company (Shropshire) at Shrewsbury from 4th Battalion The King's Shropshire Light Infantry (TA).
A Company (Cornwall) at Truro with Pltn at Bodmin from The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (TA).
B Company (Yorkshire) at Wakefield from 4th Battalion The King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (TA).
C Company (Herefordshire) at Hereford from 1st Battalion The Herefordshire Light Infantry (TA).
D Company (Durham) at Durham from 8th Battalion The Durham Light Infantry (TA). Later detachment formed at Chester-le-Street.

15 December 1969 E Company (Durham) formed at Spennymoor with det at Bishop Auckland from cadre 6th/8th (T) Battalion The Durham Light Infantry.

5th Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 1 August 1972. Headquarters at Shrewsbury.

HQ Company (Shropshire) at Shrewsbury with detachment at Whitchurch.
A Company (Cornwall) at Truro with Pltn at Bodmin.
B Company (Yorkshire) at Wakefield.
C Company (Herefordshire) at Hereford.
D Company (Durham) at Durham with detachment at Chester-le-Street.
E Company (Durham) at Spennymoor with det at Bishop Auckland.

1 April 1975: 'E' Company at Spennymoor transferred to 7th Battalion as 'D' Company. New 'E' Company formed at Wellington with det at Whitchurch by redesignation of 'C' Company The Light Infantry and Mercian Volunteers.

1 February 1981: 'A' Company at Truro and Bodmin transferred to 6th Battalion as 'D' Company; 'D' Company at Durham and Chester-le-Street transferred to 7th Battalion as 'C' Company

31 March 1981: New 'A' Company formed at Pontefract by redesignation of 'C' Company 7th Battalion; new 'D' Company formed at Ross-on-Wye with detachment at Ledbury by redesignation of 'D' Company 6th Battalion.

1 January 1987: 'A' Company at Pontefract transferred to 8th Battalion as 'B' Company; 'B' Company at Wakefield transferred to 8th Battalion at 'A' Company. New 'X' Company formed at Shrewsbury, designated 'A' Company by 1988; 'B' Company formed at Wellington by redesignation of 'E' Company.

5th (Shropshire and Herefordshire) Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesigned 9 November 1988. Headquarters at Shrewsbury.

HQ Company at Shrewsbury;
A Company at Shrewsbury;
B Company at Wellington;
C Company at Hereford;
D Company at Ross-on-Wye.

1992: reduced to three rifle companies. 'A' Company at Shrewbury disbanded; new 'A' Company formed 9 November 1992 at Kidderminster by redesignation of 'B' Company 4th Bn The Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment retaining its former identity;
1 April 1993 'D' Company at Ross-on-Wye disbanded.

5th Battalion The (Shropshire and Herefordshire) Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 26 February 1993. Headquarters at Shrewsbury.

HQ Company at Shrewsbury;
A (The Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment) Company at Kidderminster;
B Company at Wellington;
C Company at Hereford.

1 July 1999: Battalion disbanded as result of the Strategic Defence Review.
'B' Company disbanded, 'HQ' and 'C' Company amalgamated to form 'E' Company The West Midlands Regiment and 'A' Company redesignated as 'B' Company The West Midlands Regiment

6th Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Formed 1 April 1971 with Headquarters at Bath from cadres of The Somerset Yeomanry and Light Infantry (Territorials) and The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (Territorials).

HQ Company at Bath.
A (Somerset Yeomanry Light Infantry) Company at Bath with det at Midsomer Norton from cadre The Somerset Yeomanry and Light Infantry.
B (Somerset Yeomanry Light Infantry) Company at Yeovil with det at Taunton from cadre The Somerset Yeomanry and Light Infantry.
C (Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry) Company at Cambourne with det at Falmouth from cadre The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry.
D (Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry) Company at Penzance from cadre The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry.

1 April 1975: 'C' Company absorbed 'D' Company; new 'D' (Hereford) Company formed at Ross-on-Wye by redesignation of 'D' Company The Light Infantry and Mercian Volunteers.

1 February 1981: New 'D' Company formed at Truro and Bodmin by redesignation of 'A' Company 5th Battalion.
31 March 1981: existing 'D' Company at Ross-on-Wye transferred to 5th Battalion as 'D' Company.

1984: 'E' (HSF) Company formed at Bath, 'F' (HSF) Company formed at Truro.

6th (Somerset and Cornwall) Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 9 November 1988. Headquarters at Bath.

HQ Company at Bath.
A Company at Bath with detachment at Midsomer Norton.
B Company at Yeovil with detachment at Taunton.
C Company at Cambourne with detachment at Falmouth.
D Company at Truro with detachment at Bodmin.
E (HSF) Company at Bath.
F (HSF) Company at Truro.

1993: Battalion reduced to three rifle company establishment.
'A' Company at Bath and Midsomer Norton disbanded. 'E' and 'F' Company disbanded.
'B' Company moved to Taunton, with Pltn at Yeovil; 'C' Company moved to Falmouth retaining a Pltn at Camborne.

6th Battalion The (Somerset and Cornwall) Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 26 February 1993. Headquarters at Bath.

HQ Company at Bath.
B Company at Taunton with Pltn at Yeovil.
C Company at Falmouth with Pltn at Camborne.
D Company at Truro with Pltn at Bodmin.

1996: Battalion Headquarters moved to Bishop's Hull, Taunton. GPMG Pltn established at Camborne, Recce Pltn at Bath.

1 July 1999: Battalion disbanded as result of the Stategic Defence Review.
'HQ' and 'A' Company amalgamated, and 'C' and 'D' Company amalgamated to form 'B' Company and 'D' Company The Rifle Volunteers respectively.

7th Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Formed 1 April 1975 with Headquarters at Bishop Auckland with companies from the Northumbrian Volunteers, 5th Bn Volunteers and 2nd Bn Yorkshire Volunteers .

HQ Company at Durham with dets at Bishop Auckland. Mortar Pltn at Chester le Street and ATk Pltn at Spennymoor. After 1995 Assault Pioneer Pltn at Durham, Recce Pltn at Chester le Street.
A Company at Horden with det at Hartlepool by redesignation of 'A' Battery The Northumbian Volunteers.
B Company at Hebburn and Consett by redesignation of 'E' Company The Northumbrian Volunteers. 4.4.1992 amalgamated with D Coy.
C Company at Wakefield by redesignation of 'E' Company 2nd Battalion Yorkshire Volunteers.
D Company at Spennymoor and Bishop Auckland by redesignation of 'E' Company 5th Battalion.

1 April 1978: 'D' Company formed at Bishop Auckland.

1 February 1981: New 'C' Company formed at Durham with platoon at Chester-le-Street by transfer 'D' Company 5th Battalion.
31 March 1981: Existing 'C' Company at Wakefield transferred as 'A' Company 5th Battalion.

1984: E (HSF) Company formed at Bishop Auckland, Horden and Washington.
1988: New 'C' Company formed at Washington;
Headquarters and 'HQ' Company moved to Durham taking elements 'C' Company at Durham. Chester-le-Street platoon 'C' Company became Mortar Pltn; Anti-Tank Pltn formed at Spennymoor.

7th (Durham) Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 9 November 1988. Headquarters at Durham.

B Company at Bishop Auckland with Pltn at Consett. Formed 4.4.1992 by amamlgamation of 'B' Coy and 'D' Coy.
C Company at Durham with det at Chester le Street. Formed 1.2.1981 by transfer and redesignation of 'D' Coy 5th Battalion. <1992> Durham detachment merged into 'HQ' Coy.
C Company at Washinton with Pltns at Chester le Street and Sunderland. Formed 4.4.1992 from nucleus of 'C' Coy.

1992: Battalion reduced to three rifle company establishment.
'D' Company disbanded, 'B' Company moved to Bishop Auckland with platoon at Consett.
'E' (HSF) Company disbanded.

7th Battalion The (Durham) Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 26 February 1993. Headquarters at Gilesgate Armoury, Durham.

HQ Company at Gilesgate Armoury, Durham, Mortar Pltn at Chester le Street.
A Company at Horden with Pltn at Hartlepool.
B Company at Bishop Auckland with Pltn at Consett.
C Company at Washington with Pltns at Chester le Street and Sunderland.

1 April 1995: Mortar Pltn withdrawn. 'HQ' Company at Durham, with detachments at Bishop Auckland. Recce Pltn at Chester-le-Street; Assault Pioneer Pltn at Durham.

1 July 1999: Battalion disbanded as result of the Stategic Defence Review.
'B' Company and 'C' Company reorganised as 'C' Company The Tyne Tees Regiment.

8th (Yorkshire) Battalion The Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Formed 1 January 1987 with Headquarters at Wakefield. Companies from 5th Bn Volunteers and 2nd Bn Yorkshire Volunteers

HQ Company at Wakefield with AT Pltn at Wakefield and Mortar Pltn at Pontefract. Formed from elements 5th Battalion.
A Company at Wakefield by redesignation of 'A' Company 5th Battalion.
B Company at Pontefract by redesignation of 'B' Company 5th Battalion.
C Company at Batley. Formed 15.1.1986 from Batley platoon 'C' Company 2nd Battalion Yorkshire Volunteers.
D Company at Barnsley. New formed.

1992: reduced to three rifle company establisment.
4 April 1992: 'D' Company at Barnsley disbanded;
'A' Company at Wakefield amalgamated with 'HQ' Company; 'C' Company at Batley retitled as 'A' Company, new 'C' Company at Doncaster formed by redesignation of 'C' Company 4th Battalion Yorkshire Volunteers.

8th Battalion The (Yorkshire) Light Infantry (Volunteers)

Redesignated 26 February 1993. Headquarters at Wakefield.

HQ Company at Wakefield with AT Pltn at Wakefield and Mortar Pltn at Pontefract.
A Company at Batley with detachment at Dewsbury.
B Company at Pontefract.
C Company at Doncaster.

By 1995 Atk and Mortar platoons withdrawn from battalion and consolidated in Fire Support Battalions.

3 August 1996: As result of Option for Change, the battalion reroled as a National Defence Reconnaissance Regiment commencing in 1995. The new Regiment was titled The Kings Own Yorkshire Yeomanry (Light Infantry)
Companies retitled as 'HQ', 'C', 'B' and 'A' Squadron respectively.

THE REGIMENTS

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