Lineage of British Army Regiments, 1967 - 2000

Aim and scope of this page

This site is dedicated to the lineages of British Regiments since the reorganisations of the reserve forces in 1967. As such, this site will mostly contain information of the Territorial Army. For completeness the regulars are dealt with briefly.
The information presented here originates from a great many sources, and in fact only the putting together of all information is my contribution. The reference section lists the most important publications used for compilation. Furthermore, information supplied by several regiments I wrote for some details proved also most useful, as well as the contributions from visitors of this site. Last but not least I am much indepted to Graham Watson for his kind supply of notes and knowledge on the support and service corps, of which the results are found here.

This site aims at anyone with an interest in the history of the Territorial Army in particular, and the British Army in general. That brings us to one of the aims, which is to provide a chronology of the Territorial Army, and this may be welcome given the various changes of the last decade. However, it is made without the intention to proclaim that all changes were unnecessary and without holding to fast on the past. Though its memories are certainly worth being kept alive.
 

Acknowledgements

The information given on these pages could not have been written without the help and contribution of numerous people. Sometimes their help was more informative and sometimes more constructive. In any case I would like to express my gratitude to them all. The following people I want to mention in particular:
Todd Mills, known for his great work at Regiments.org;
Graham Watson, mentioned above.
 

Note on presentation

The Regiments and Corps are listed below in order of precedence. Each seperate chapter contains, or will contain, an introduction specific to that particular Corps.

Contact details

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Short overview

Here the titles of the pre-1967, 1967 and current units are listed for quick reference.
 

Table of contents:

General preliminary information

Overview of changes 1967  - 2000
Command Structure of the Territorial Army 1967 - 2000

Regular units

Cavalry Regiments 
Foot Guards
Infantry of the Line

Territorial units

Yeomanry
Royal Regiment of Artillery Volunteer Regiments
Corps of Royal Engineers Volunteer Regiments
Royal Corps of Signals Volunteer Regiments
The Infantry
Royal Logistic Corps Volunteer Regiments
Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers
Royal Army Ordnance Corps (1967 - 1993)


Overview of changes 1967 - 2000

Creation of the T.A.V.R.
In the 1960s it became clear that the Territorial Army needed a review, since it was seriously under-manned and ill-equipped. This led to the creation of the Territorial and Army Volunteer Reserve on 1 April 1967. This Reserve body was divided into four categories. First there was the TAVR I consisting of units ready for any kind of emergency. Next came the TAVR II which consisted of those units assigned to a NATO role. These units were styled Volunteers, first use of this title since 1908.
Subsequently, the TAVR III were intended for a Home Defence role. The TAVR III also perpetuated titles of T.A. units which were lost otherwise in this process. There existed only Yeomanry, Artillery and Infantry units within the TAVR III, though other arms of service assisted in formation, often to preserve some identity. These TAVR III units were formed on a local basis, and there were quite a lot of them compared to the TAVR II. The TAVR III units were called Territorials.
Finally there was the TAVR IV which consisted of bands and University OTC.

Another reorganisation occurred when the TAVR III was disbanded in January 1969. All units reduced to an eight men cadre by March 31 of the same year. These cadres were to maintain the titles and traditions of the units lost in this proces. Each cadre was located with a TAVR II unit.
It's worth noting that quite a few new sub-units were formed within TAVR II units from disbanded TAVR III elements.
However, these reductions proved to drastic, and in 1971 many of the cadres were used as nucleus for new-formed units.

Again the Territorial Army, and the 1980's
According to the Shapland Report of 1978, the title Territorial Army and Volunteer Reserve was replaced by the title Territorial Army on 7 August 1979. This title was more familiar to the public, and thus was also intended as aid to recruiting.
Two Defence White Papers were published beginning of the 1980's - 1982 and 1984. The main points can be summed up as follows:

The net result by 1990 was an increase of the infantry strength by six battalions, and formation of a new Air Defence Regiment within the Royal Artillery. Home Service Force elements were added to units in every Corps. First at platoon strength, but later they grew to company-size.

The 1990s, 'Options for Change' and after
However, the Cold War came to an end in the early 1990s, implying the role of the TA as reinforcement to BAOR disappeared. It meant a serious reduction in numbers (to 59.000) and units. More seriously affected however were the regulars. All large regiments lost their third battalions in due course, six regiments amalgamated and the three senior Guards regiments lost their second battalion.  The Cavalry reduced from 14 to seven regiments and the Royal Artillery (not listed here....) lost 5 regiments.

In the summer of 1998 a new review of the Territorial Army was announced, called the Strategic Defence Review. It was intended to make the reserve forces more suited for tasks to be encountered in the 21st century, and in that sense what Options for Change did to the regulars, was what the Strategic Defence Review did to the Territorials. Since there is no immediate threat to Britian itself, the role of the TA needed to be redefined. So, the emphasis was shifted from combat to combat support role and the TA was to assist the regular forces in greater extant. For the infantry for example, this meant that the 33 battalions reduced to 15 battalion sizes units, retaining regimental traditions, affiliations and capbadges at company level. In fact, all new units would be organised similarly as The London Regiment was since 1993. The result was another decrease in manpower by 19.000 to 40.000. 


References

M.A. Bellis, British Regiments 1945 -- 1995, Malcolm A. Bellis, 1997.
J.B.M. Frederick, Lineage Book of British Land Forces 1660 -- 1978, 2 Vols, Microform Academic Press, Wakefield, 1984.
M.A. Heyman, The Territoiral Army 1999, Vol. 1, R&F Publication, 1999.
N.E.H.Litchfield, The Territorial Artillery 1908 - 1988, The Sherwood Press (Nottingham) Ltd, 1992.
B. Peedle, Encyclopaedia of the Moders Territorial Army, Patrick Stephens Ltd, Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, 1990.
B.Peedle (editor), Year of the Yeomanry, Army Museums Ogilby Trust, 1994.
Colonel W.J. Tovey and Major A.J. Podmore, Once a Howard, Twice a Citizen, H.& F. Stokeld, Middlesbrough, 1995.
A.J. Podmore, The Light Infantry Volunteers 1794 -- 1994, Publication The Light Infantry, 1994.
A.J. Podmore, Volunteer Artillery and Volunteer Infantry in the County of York, Endcliffe Hall, Sheffield, 1993.
G.E.Watson, Terriers and Sappers, Lineages of the Reserve Regiment and Squadrons of The Corps of Royal Engineers 1908 - 1999, The Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia), 1999.



 
 
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