Overview

The Royal Regiment of Scotland was formed on 28 March 2006. However, the heritage of The Royal Regiment of Scotland reaches back to 1633 when the first of the antecedent Scottish regiments, The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment), were raised. Over the centuries the antecedent Scottish regiments have won fame around the world for their military exploits and fighting prowess. The Regiment is fiercely proud of this impressive military heritage and the 4 regular battalions, 2 reserve battalions and 1 independent rifle company retain and carry forward many of the fine traditions established by these antecedent regiments. 

Pte Kieran Flynn and LCpl David Shingleston with the new SCOTS tartan at Edinburgh Castle in 2006.

Two members of the Regiment with the new SCOTS tartan at Edinburgh Castle in 2006.

 

When the Regiment was initially formed in March 2006 it consisted of six regular battalions and 2 reserve battalions. The 1st Battalion’s formation was delayed until August as both The Royal Scots and King’s Own Scottish Borderers were deployed on operations when the Regiment formed on 28 March. The other battalions were formed from the remaining regiments of the Scottish Division. These were The Royal Highland Fusiliers, The Black Watch, The Highlanders, The Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders, The 52nd Lowland Regiment and The 51st Highland Regiment respectively.

Of all of the newly formed regiments with the British Army, The Royal Regiment of Scotland is the only one where former regimental titles have been prominently retained with the new numbered battalion designations used as abbreviations. Each soldier in the Regiment wears the same cap badge, tactical recognition flash, stable belt, tartan and glengarry headdress but distinctively coloured hackles are worn on the Tam o’ Shanter headdress to indicate the battalion they belong to. Furthermore, the Pipes & Drums of each battalion continue to wear the ceremonial dress of their antecedent regiments.

HM The Queen presenting the new Colours to the Regiment on 2 July 2011

 

On 2 July 2011 HM The Queen, who is Colonel-in-Chief of the Regiment, presented new Colours to the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th and 7th Battalions at Holyrood Park in Edinburgh.

The 4th Battalion, who were on operations in Afghanistan at the time, were presented with their new Colours by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, their Royal Colonel, on 3 December 2011 at RAF Kinloss.

HRH The Duke of Edinburgh presenting new Colours to the 4th Battalion on 3 December 2011

 

In 2012, as part of the Army 2020 reform package, it was announced that the 5th Battalion, whilst not losing its name and history as The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, would be reduced to the status of an independent rifle company, similar to the three companies in the Guards Division, and would become a permanent public duties unit based in Scotland. This conversion from a full sized battalion to Balaklava Company took place in June 2013.

On 28 March 2016 The Royal Regiment of Scotland celebrated its 10 year anniversary. Its first decade has seen a high level of operational activity for the Regiment so that in addition to the impressive heritage of its antecedent regiments, it can now look with pride to its own recent history and accomplishments.

Hackles worn by The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The current composition of The Royal Regiment of Scotland

Operations the Regiment have participated in between 2006 and 2016

 

Operation BANNER: Northern Ireland

Operation TELIC : Iraq

Operation HERRICK: Afghanistan

Operation TORAL: Afghanistan (Successor to Op HERRICK – Kabul Protection Unit)

Operation TOSCA: Cyprus (Operations in support of the United Nations peacekeeping mission)

Operation VOCATE: United Kingdom (UK based training mission for Libya)

Operation ELGIN: Bosnia (Peacekeeping deployment as part of EUFOR)

Operation GRITROCK: Sierra Leone (Force protection humanitarian mission in fight against Ebola epidemic)

Operation COMET: United Kingdom (Military support to security of the Commonwealth Games)

The Royal Scots Borderers, 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The 1st Battalion are a light role regular infantry battalion based at Palace Barracks in Belfast. The Battalion was formed by the merger of The Royal Scots and The King’s Own Scottish Borderers in August 2006. HRH Princess Anne (The Princess Royal) is the Royal Colonel. Soldiers of the Battalion wear a black hackle in their Tam O’Shanters.

1SCOTS

 

1st Battalion Operational History

Operation BANNERMarch 2006 – July 2006
Operation TELICNovember 2007 – May 2008
Operation HERRICK 10March 2010 – September 2010 (Minden Platoon attached to 3 SCOTS)
Operation HERRICK 11September 2009 – April 2010 (B Company attached to 3 RIFLES)
Operation HERRICK 12March 2010 – September 2010
Operation TOSCAOctober 2012 – April 2013 (Platoon)
Operation HERRICK 17September 2012 – March 2013
Operation ELGINJune 2014 – August 2014 ( A Coy)
Operation GRITROCKOctober 2104 – March 2015 (B Coy)
Operation TOSCASeptember 2015 - to date

The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The 2nd Battalion are a light role regular infantry battalion based at Glencorse Barracks in Edinburgh. HRH Prince Andrew (The Duke of York) is the Royal Colonel. Soldiers of the Battalion wear a white hackle in their Tam O’Shanters.

2SCOTS

 

2nd Battalion Operational History

Operation HERRICK 8April 2008 – October 2008
Operation HERRICK 13October 2010 – March 2011
Operation HERRICK 18April 2013 – October 2013
Operation TORALAugust 2015 – To date

The Black Watch, 3rd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The 3rd Battalion are a light mechanised infantry battalion based in Fort George, Inverness. HRH Prince Charles (The Duke of Rothesay & The Prince of Wales) is the Royal Colonel. Soldiers of the Battalion wear a red hackle in their Tam O’Shanters.

3SCOTS

 

3rd Battalion Operational History

Operation BANNERMarch 2006 – 31 July 2007
Operation TELIC 9November 2006 – April 2007 (A (Grenadier) Company)
Operation TELIC 10April 2007- November 2007 (13 Platoon attached to 2 Royal Welsh)
Operation HERRICK 10April 2009 – November 2009
Operation HERRICK 15September 2011- March 2012
Operation COMETJuly/August 2014 (50+ men)
Operation VOCATEDates & Strength TBC
Operation TOSCAMarch 2015 – Oct 2015

The Highlanders, 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The 4th Battalion are a heavy protected mobility infantry battalion and are based at Borlon Barracks, Catterick. HRH Prince Philip (The Duke of Edinburgh) is the Royal Colonel. Soldiers of the Battalion wear a blue hackle in their Tam O’Shanters.

4SCOTS

4th Battalion Operational History

Operation TELIC 7October 2005 – April 2006
Operation TELIC 12March 2008 – October 2008
Operation HERRICK 8March 2008– September 2008 (B Company attached to 5th Battalion)
Operation HERRICK 14March 2011 – October 2011
Operation HERRICK 19September 2013 – June 2014

Balaklava Company, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

Balaklava Company are an independent rifle company (converted from a full sized battalion in June 2013) and are based in Redford Barracks, Edinburgh. They retain a light infantry role as well as perform public duties and state ceremonial tasks in Scotland. HM The Queen is the Royal Colonel and soldiers of the Battalion wear a green hackle in their Tam O’Shanters.

5SCOTS

 

5th Battalion Operational History

Operation HERRICK 4July 2006 – October 2006 (B Company plus Reconnaissance Platoon)
Operation HERRICK 8April 2008 – October 2008
Operation HERRICK 13October 2010 – March 2011

52nd Lowland, 6th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The 6th Battalion are a reserve light role infantry battalion. The Battalion’s headquarters are located in Glasgow and there are detachments in Ayr, Bathgate, Dumfries, Edinburgh, Galashiels and Motherwell. HRH Princess Anne (The Princess Royal) is the Royal Colonel and soldiers of the Battalion wear a grey hackle in their Tam O’Shanters.

6 SCOTS

 

6th Battalion Operational History

Officers and soldiers of the 6th Battalion have reinforced the regular battalions on most operations since 2006.

51st Highland, 7th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The 7th Battalion are a reserve light role infantry battalion. Battalion Headquarters is located in Perth and there are detachments in Dundee, Aberdeen, Kirkcaldy, Inverness, Elgin, Stornoway, Dumbarton and Stirling. HRH Prince Charles (The Duke of Rothesay & The Prince of Wales) is the Royal Colonel and soldiers of the Battalion wear purple hackles in their Tam O’Shanters.

7SCOTS

 

7th Battalion Operational History

In addition to the Company strength deployment below, members of the Battalion have reinforced the regular battalions on most operations since 2006.

Operation TELIC 9November 2006- May 2007-Alamein Company

 Roll of Honour

Roll of Honour

 

Since 28 March 2006, 22 men of The Royal Regiment of Scotland have been killed whilst serving on operations. Each man’s name, respective battalion as well as date & place of death is listed in the table below.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

(Robert Laurence Binyon)

NameBattalionDate DiedCountry
Craig O’Donnell5th Battalion04/09/06Afghanistan
Scott Kennedy3rd Battalion28/06/07Iraq
Jamie Kerr3rd Battalion28/06/07Iraq
John McDermid2nd Battalion14/11/07Afghanistan
James Johnson5th Battalion28/06/08Afghanistan
Jonathan Matthews4th Battalion28/07/08Afghanistan
Barry Dempsey2nd Battalion18/08/08Afghanistan
Sean Binnie3rd Battalion07/05/09Afghanistan
Robert McLaren3rd Battalion11/06/09Afghanistan
Kevin Elliott3rd Battalion31/08/09Afghanistan
Stuart Millar3rd Battalion31/08/09Afghanistan
Thomas Mason3rd Battalion25/10/09Died in the UK from wounds sustained in Afghanistan
Sean McDonald1st Battalion07/02/10Afghanistan
Johnathan Moore1st Battalion07/02/10Afghanistan
Joseph Pool1st Battalion05/09/10Afghanistan
Joseva Vatubua5th Battalion01/01/11Afghanistan
Michael Pike4th Battalion03/06/11Afghanistan
Scott McLaren4th Battalion04/07/11Afghanistan
Walter Barrie1st Battalion11/11/12Afghanistan
Samuel Flint2nd Battalion30/04/13Afghanistan
Robert Hetherington7th Battalion30/04/13Afghanistan
William Savage2nd Battalion30/04/13Afghanistan


Honours & Awards

Left to right: Major Alexander Fitzpatrick MBE, Major Nicholas Calder Military Cross, Lieutenant Colonel Nicholas Borton Distiguished Service Order, Second Lieutenant Alexander Barclay MC, Corporal Shaun Whitehead MC, Major Thomas Perkins MBE and Lieutenant Colonel Charles Herbert OBE displaying their awards at Buckingham Palace on Thursday 11 June 2009.

Left to right: Major Alexander Fitzpatrick MBE, Major Nicholas Calder Military Cross, Lieutenant Colonel Nicholas Borton Distiguished Service Order, Second Lieutenant Alexander Barclay MC, Corporal Shaun Whitehead MC, Major Thomas Perkins MBE and Lieutenant Colonel Charles Herbert OBE displaying their awards at Buckingham Palace on Thursday 11 June 2009.

 

Members of the Regiment have gained numerous awards for gallantry and distinguished service over the past decade. These include 5 Distinguished Service Orders, 13 Military Crosses and 1 Queen’s Gallantry Medal.