London Scottish (regiment)

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The London Scottish
Active 1859-
Country United Kingdom
Branch Army
Type Infantry
Role Light infantry
Size RHQ and One company
Part of London Regiment
Garrison/HQ London
Nickname Cockney Jocks (Piccadilly Allsorts)
Motto Strike Sure
March Highland Laddie
Anniversaries 31st October 1914. 1st TA unit into action in WW1, Messines ridge, 1st battle of Ypres
Commanders
Current
commander
Major Nicholas Storey
Honorary Colonel Baron Robertson of Port Ellen KT, GCMG, FRSA, PC
Colonel of
the Regiment
Colonel David Rankin-Hunt LVO MBE TD
Notable
commanders
Lord Elcho, Lt Col GA Malcolm, Lt Col RTS MacPherson, Lt Col MAJ Overton, Maj MWH Ludlow.
Insignia
Tartan Hodden Grey

The London Scottish is a unit of the British Army. Formerly a regiment, the unit is now a company of The London Regiment.

Founding of the regiment[edit]

The regiment was Founded in 1859, part of the widespread volunteer movement which developed in the face of potential French invasion after Felice Orsini's attack on Napoleon III was linked to Britain.

Originally as part of the Volunteer Force sponsored by The Highland Society of London and The Caledonian Society of London, a group of individual Scots raised The London Scottish Rifle Volunteers under the command of Lt Col Lord Elcho, later The Earl of Wemyss and March. Over many years the London Scottish have changed titles and lineage, today they are A (London Scottish) Company of The London Regiment.

The regimental tartan is Elcho tartan of Hodden Grey in colour. Lt Col Lord Elcho clothed the regiment in Hodden Grey, the homespun cloth known throughout Scotland. This avoided all interclan feeling on the subject of tartan and, as Lord Elcho said "A soldier is a man hunter. As a deer stalker chooses the least visible of colours, so ought a soldier to be clad." Along with Elcho Tartan there is also Elcho Blue that was formerly worn on some offices uniforms.

The Regimental Head Dresses of the London scottish and Toronto Scottish are as follows. Glengarry, Tam O'Shanter and officers Balmoral. All kilted dress is worn with glengarry Officers, NCO's, pipe band and other ranks of the London Scottish wear a plain dark navy blue Glengarry with ribbons, rosette behind cap badge, Royal blue toorie and Cock feather in ceremonial dress.

Officers, NCO's other ranks of Toronto scottish wear a Glengarry of Dark navy blue with a diced band of Tan, white, Elcho blue accompanied Elcho Blue Toorie, Rosette and ribbons. Band members of the Toronto scottish do not wear the diced glengarry but either wear a plain dark navy with Ribbon and rosette accompanied by Elch blue toorie or feather bonnet.

Pipers of the serving company and cadet corps have the honour to wear Glengarry without cock feather while in Battle dress if they choose to do so.

Battle dress

Officers The London Scottish and Toronto Scottish wear an officers Fawn Balmoral with Silver officers Cap Badge Backed with square 4' Hodden grey patch. There is one notable difference in that the Toronto scottish have a Lovat green Toorie formally blue.

Warrant officers London Scottish Khaki Green Tam O'Shanter with Silver Warrant officers Cap Badge Backed with square 4' Hodden grey patch and Khaki Green toorie formally blue.

Other Ranks London Scottish Khaki Green Tam O'Shanter with White metal or Anodised Aluminium Regimental Cap Badge Backed with square 4' Hodden grey patch and Khaki Green toorie formally blue. Toronto Scottish Lovat Green Tam O'Shanter with White metal or Anodised Aluminium Regimental Cap Badge Backed with square 4' Black Ribbon and blue toorie.

Serving pipers and cadet band members are entitled to wear the Glengarry in battledress.

Titles and lineage[edit]

  • The London Scottish Rifle Volunteer Corps - raised in 1859
  • 15th Middlesex (London Scottish) Rifle Volunteer Corps - official designation under county titles later in 1859
  • 7th Middlesex (London Scottish) Rifle Volunteers - renamed in 1880
  • 7th Middlesex (London Scottish) Volunteer Rifle Corps - renamed in 1891
  • 14th (County of London) Battalion, The London Regiment (London Scottish) - renamed 1908 with the creation of the Territorial Force
  • 14th London Regiment (London Scottish) - renamed 1922
  • The London Scottish, The Gordon Highlanders - 1937
  • in 1967 the regiment was reconstituted as two companies: G Company (London Scottish), 51st Highland Volunteers (AVR2); and C Company (London Scottish), The London Yeomanry and Territorials (AVR3)
  • AVR 3 disbanded (?date)
  • G Company, 1st Battalion (51st Highland Volunteers)(1/51 HLD)- 1971 (the Argyll & Sutherland Highlander companies of 51st Highland formed 3rd Battalion, whilst the Gordons and Queen's Own Highlanders companies formed 2nd Battalion. 1/51 was essentially Black Watch, with London Scottish and Liverpool Scottish add-ons.
  • A (London Scottish) Company, The London Regiment - 1993
  • A (London Scottish) Company, The London Regiment (Guards Division) - 2006 (Each company links to a Foot Guards Regiment for operational support and from which permanent staff instructors are drawn. The London Scottish is paired with the Scots Guards.)

The London Scottish in WW2[edit]

The London Scottish raised three Battalions during World War 2, only two of which served overseas. Both of the overseas battalions served with the Middle Eastern Forces in Sicily and Italy. The Battalions were:

  • 1st Battalion - The regular peacetime battalion of the regiment, served as infantry within the 56th (London) Division.
  • 2nd Battalion - Raised as a 'duplicate' of the 1st battalion, with a core of officers and senior NCOs from that battalion. The 2nd battalion remained in the UK as an infantry battalion committed to home defence.
  • 3rd Battalion - Raised as a Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment. The title was "97th Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment, R.A, T.A. (The London Scottish)".

London Scottish Cadet Corps[edit]

A detailed history of the London Scottish Cadets can be found in the Regimental Gazette, written month to month over the years, but there follows some useful facts about all three Army Cadet Units that are badged London Scottish.

The earliest record of The London Scottish Cadet Corps ("LSCC") was in 1902. It existed alongside their sponsors The London Scottish Regiment now A (London Scottish) Coy The London Regiment. The London Scottish Cadets originally formed as a battalion with three companies and a pipe band. It was one of a very few cadet battalions to be presented its own Colours.

The LSCC is now 235 London Scottish Detachment, a member of 23 Group Middlesex and NW London ACF. Formally based at the RHQ, 95 Horseferry Road until 2005 and now at the former RMP barracks on Rochester Row. 235 lives on to share its traditions with two other cadet detachments now in the Greater London & South East Sector ACF.

95(London Scottish)Cadet Coy - Eltham was formed in the 1940s with a nucleus of boys from Eltham College. It is based on the site of a former Royal Artillery TA Centre in Footscray Road SE9. Ocs included Major (later Lt Col) Stewart Allward, Capt "Bunny" Bancroft, Capt Eric Botell and Capt Nigel Betts.

The third London Scottish Cadet unit is 102 (Bromley) Pltn, 10 (Kent) Cadet Regiment, formed in 1913 as part of the 1st Cadet Btn Royal North West Kent Regt, over the years the unit was re-badged a number of times, firstly as a Royal Artillery unit and in the 1970s as a Royal Signals unit. In 1989, the unit was located at Hill House TA Centre in Bromley, formerly the home of Sir Harold Macmillan, Lord Stockton, which they shared with the Recce Platoon and 6 Platoon of G (The London Scottish) Coy 1/51 Highland Vols. The relationship between the London Scottish and cadets was so good that the then unit commander Major John Smith MBE requested that the cadets be re-badged to London Scottish, the unit they proudly represent today.

Regimental band[edit]

Victoria Crosses[edit]

Victoria Crosses were awarded to the following members of the London Scottish: Robert Edward Cruickshank, Charles William Train, and George Allan Mitchell.

Alliances[edit]

External links[edit]