"To seek out and close with the enemy, to kill or capture him, to
seize or hold ground, to repel attack by day or night, regardless of
season, weather or terrain."
The British Infantry is based on the well tried and tested
Regimental System, which has repeatedly proved to be successful on
operations over the years. It is based on Regiments, most of which
have one or more regular Battalion and all have associated TA
Battalions. The esprit de corps of the Regimental system is
maintained in the names and titles of British Infantry Regiments
handed down through history, with a tradition of courage in battle.
The repeated changing size of the British Army, dictated by history
and politics, is reflected in the fact that many of the most
illustrious Regiments still have a number of Regular and Territorial
Reserve Battalions. For manning purposes, in a number of cases
Infantry Regiments are grouped within administrative ‘Divisions'.
These ’Divisions’ are no longer field formations but represent
original historical groupings based on recruiting geography.
The 'Division' of Infantry is an organisation that is responsible
for all aspects of military administration, from recruiting, manning
and promotions for individuals in the Regiments under its wing, to
the longer term planning required to ensure continuity and cohesion.
Divisions of Infantry have no operational command over their
regiments, and should not be confused with the remaining operational
divisions, such as 1st (United Kingdom) Division and 3 (United Kingdom) Division.
There are currently 31 Regular Infantry Battalions and the majority
of these battalions are now situated in permanent locations. This
figure excludes 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, a
public duties company sized unit, and 1st Battalion The Parachute
Regiment a major unit forming the core of the Special Forces Support
During early 2016 we believe that the infantry are located as
||26 battalions (2 Resident in Northern Ireland)
||2 battalions (in the
process of returning to the UK)
||1 company group on detachment
||1 battalion (Gurkha)
In 2016 the Administrative 'Divisions of Infantry' are structured
In total the British
Army has 31 regular battalions available for service and this total
combined with the 14 Reserve battalions (excluding The Royal Gibraltar
Regiment) could give a mobilisation strength of 45 infantry battalions.
Outside the above listed
regiments are three companies of guardsmen each of 90 men, who
provide a supplement the Household Division Regiments while on public
duties in London. This allows Regiments of the Foot Guards to continue to carry out normal training
on roulement from guard duties.
The 5th Battalion The
Royal Regiment of Scotland (a company sized unit with about 110
personnel) carries out public duties in Edinburgh.
Gibraltar also has its own
single battalion of The Royal Gibraltar Regiment comprising one regular and
two volunteer companies.