Napoleon Series Archive 2003

Re: British Battalion Strength
In Response To: Re: British Battalion Strength ()

Ron,

I suppose the point I am making about the Irish establishment is that in the 18th century the British military hierachy used this to keep more regiments in existance than would have been possible had they all been on a common establishment (as would have happened in most other European nations).

There was, and still is, a wish within the British army to keep regiments alive regardless of tactical logic. With a background of 30 years service in the British army I can both understand this and, within reason, support it.

This same situation is about to happen again shortly. The government has decided that we have too many armoured regiments. In many armies the surplus ones would just be disbanded. Because most of our Royal Armoured Corps comprises former cavalry regiments with hundreds of years of history, which have already been heavily amalgamated, I understand that much of the new reduction will be achieved by reducing regiments from four squadrons to three. This decision is really being made much more on grounds of tradition than tactical requirements, although undoubtedly someone will justify it on military grounds.

The military hierachy of the 18th century faced exactly the same financial imperatives from the government of the day and solved it in a similar pragmatic British way, ignoring the untidy pattern of varied establishments which thus resulted.

Rod

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