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London District (British Army)

Coordinates: 51°30′17″N 0°07′38″W / 51.5046°N 0.1272°W / 51.5046; -0.1272
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

London District
Insignia of the London District
CountryUnited Kingdom
BranchBritish Army
TypeRegular / Army Reserve
Part ofHome Command
Garrison/HQHorse Guards
General Officer Commanding, London DistrictMajor General James Bowder
Deputy Commander, London DistrictBrigadier Jeremy Lamb
Chief of Staff, London DistrictColonel Guy Stone LVO
Civil Secretary, London DistrictSteven Rocknean
Deputy Chief of Staff, London DistrictLieutenant Colonel Matthew Forde
Brigade Major, London DistrictLieutenant Colonel James Shaw
Garrison Sergeant MajorWarrant Officer Class 1, Andrew "Vern" Stokes

London District (LONDIST) is the name given by the British Army to the area of operations encompassing the Greater London area. It was established in 1870 as Home District.[1]


In January 1876 a ‘Mobilization Scheme for the forces in Great Britain and Ireland’ was published, with the ‘Active Army’ divided into eight army corps based on the District Commands. 3rd Corps was to be formed within London District, based in Croydon. This scheme disappeared in 1881, when the districts were retitled ‘District Commands.[2] It was re-formed in 1905 as London District to be an independent district within the larger command structure of the army, and has remained so ever since. In 1906, when the Chief of the General Staff moved to the Old War Office Building,[3] HQ London District moved to Horse Guards.[4] In September 1939, the district included the 1st and 2nd London Divisions, the 22nd Armoured Brigade, the Life Guards and Royal Horse Guards and five Guards infantry battalions.[5]

During the Second World War the operational headquarters of London District was temporarily based at Leconfield House in Curzon Street.[6] After the war Headquarters London District returned to Horse Guards, where it remains under the command of the General Officer Commanding (GOC). The incumbent is concurrently the Major-General commanding the Household Division. The Garrison Sergeant Major is currently Warrant Officer Class 1 (WO1) Andrew 'Vern' Stokes COLDM GDS.[7]

London District included the 56th (London) Brigade from January 1987 to 1993.[8]

By 2007 the units in the district included the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment; the 1st Battalions of the Welsh Guards and Coldstream Guards; 2nd Battalion, Mercian Regiment; Nijmegen Company, Grenadier Guards, No. 7 Company, Coldstream Guards, and F Company, Scots Guards, the three Guards incremental companies; The King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery; 20 Transport Squadron, Royal Logistic Corps;[9] headquarters and much of the Army Reserve's Royal Yeomanry; the London Regiment; 106 (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery; 135 Independent Geography Squadron, Royal Engineers; 151 (London) Transport Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps; Central Volunteer Headquarters RA; and the University of London Officers' Training Corps.[10]


London District supervises several operational infantry battalions that are not attached to a deployable brigade, but instead are available for independent deployment as needed; as well as carrying out ceremonial and vital asset/facilities protection, including of the Royal Family. The district is also regionally aligned with the Caribbean region as part of defence engagement (the use of people and assets to prevent conflict, build stability and gain influence).[11][12]

HQ London District is responsible for the administration of all Army units within Greater London and Windsor that are not part of another formation:


  1. ^ From Restoration to the 21st Century Archived 7 January 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Army List 1876–1881.
  3. ^ The Old War Office Building
  4. ^ Tabor, p. 19
  5. ^ Niehorster, London District
  6. ^ "The Secret Architecture of London". Geocities. Retrieved 18 February 2017.
  7. ^ "WO1 (GSM) Andrew 'Vern' Stokes, Coldstream Guards". Trooping the Colour. Retrieved 18 February 2017.
  8. ^ 56 (London) Brigade at regiments.org Archived 18 July 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "Units". 12 February 2008. Archived from the original on 12 February 2008. Retrieved 24 September 2018.
  10. ^ "London UOTC". Ministry of Defence. Retrieved 13 May 2017.
  11. ^ "UK's International Defence Engagement Strategy" (PDF). Ministry of Defence. Retrieved 27 March 2023.
  12. ^ "Information regarding British Army brigades being regionally aligned" (PDF). assets.publishing.service.gov.uk. Ministry of Defence UK. 2 August 2019. Retrieved 9 April 2020. Responsible Organisation HQ London District Region Caribbean
  13. ^ "London District" (PDF). whatdotheyknow.com. Whatdotheyknow. 15 October 2020. Retrieved 19 October 2020. The 1st Battalions of the Grenadier, Coldstream, Irish, and Welsh Guards rotate in pairs between public duties/ceremonial and field army roles on a two-yearly cycle...London Regiment
  14. ^ "1st Battalion". Coldstream Guards. Retrieved 16 September 2022.
  15. ^ "Irish Guards form two new Companies with historic links for future role". British Army. Retrieved 16 September 2022.
  16. ^ Tanner, Jim (February 2023). "Infantry Reductions and Reorganisation 2022" (PDF). Bulletin of the Military Historical Society. 73 (291): 153–155. Retrieved 6 June 2023.


External links[edit]

51°30′17″N 0°07′38″W / 51.5046°N 0.1272°W / 51.5046; -0.1272