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|Royal Regiment of Artillery
TThe Company’s longest standing and closest military relationship is with the Royal Regiment of Artillery. A number of Liverymen are either past or serving members of the Regiment. We are proud that several former Master Gunners of St. James’s Park have become Honorary Liverymen, including Field Marshall The Lord Vincent, GBE, KCB, DSO;General Sir Alexander Harley, KBE, CB;General Sir Timothy Granville-Chapmanand the present Master GunnerLt Gen Sir Andrew Gregory KBE, CB.
This important association can be traced back to the 1670 Bylaws of the Company in which, inter alia, it is decreed:-
It is also worth recording that the Royal Artillery is the only regiment in the British Army to have the traditional wooden wheel incorporated within their cap badge.
The English first used guns in battle alongside longbows at Crécy in 1346. Since then it has used them in almost every war and campaign it has fought throughout the world, but it was almost four hundred years before a permanent force of artillery was formed. In peacetime, guns were kept in castles and were looked after by Master Gunners, skilled in their manufacture and knowledgeable in their use. In wartime, men were recruited and trained into a "Trayne of Artillery" until on the 26th May 1716 the first two Companies of Artillery were formed by Royal Warrant at Woolwich.
The guns of the Royal Artillery are the Regiment's Colours, in the same way that the flags and guidons of infantry regiments are theirs, leading them into battle. The Colours represent pride in the Regiment, so the guns are protected and retained at all costs. If the situation demands that they are left behind they must be disabled or destroyed. The gun depicted on the cap badge is a 9pdr Rifled Muzzle Loader of about 1871, and the rammer used to ram the charge into the muzzle is also seen, to the left of the carriage wheel. Ubique, surmounting the gun, means "Everywhere", and the motto below Quo Fas et Gloria Ducunt, "Where right and glory lead us".
In recognition of the close links between the Livery Company and the Royal Artillery, the Company makes an annual award in the form of 'The Openshaw Cup' to the best Warrant Officer on the Gunnery Career Course. Awards are also made to the best RA badged student at their passing-out parade at Harrogate.
1st Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery
The Regiment itself is, by British Army standards, quite young, dating to 1938. However, it was created out of pre-existing batteries, all of which have served continuously since 1855 and two of the Regiment's batteries have served continuously since the 1790s.
There is a developing relationship between the Company and the 1 RHA. In recent years the Master has attended selected Regimental events including, in 2017, the Passing Out parade for the retiring Colonel, Lt General Sir Andrew Gregory. This was prior to Sir Andrew being appointed Master Gunner of St James’s Park (see above).
The Company makes two awards each year to the winners of the Bombardier and Lance Bombardier courses and the Master presents these at the final Passing Out ceremony in Tidworth Barracks.
King’s Troop, Royal Horse Artillery
The King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery is largely a ceremonial mounted unit and all of its soldiers are trained to care for and drive teams of six horses drawing First World War-era 13-pounder state saluting guns. Its duties include the firing of royal salutes on royal anniversaries and State occasions. The King’s Troop is most often seen when providing gun salutes on state occasions in Hyde Park and Green Park. The Regiment’s gunners have an alternative operational role in the defence of the United Kingdom and members of the troop have been deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq. The Troop is based currently at its purpose built barracks in Woolwich.
7 Parachute Regiment (RHA)
7 Parachute Regiment (RHA) is based at Melville Barracks, Colchester and is an integral part of 16 Air Assault Brigade. The Regiment was formed on 27 June 1961 with the re-designation of 33rd Parachute Light Regiment Royal Artillery as 7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery. The regiment first saw action in the middle-east in Kuwait in 1961 and then in Aden in 1963–65 where it was involved in fierce fighting in the Radfan mountains.
Since the formation of 16 Air Assault Brigade in 1999, 7 Para RHA has been involved in numerous overseas operations. The Sierra Leone campaign in summer 2000 was followed by Op Essential Harvest in Macedonia a year later and then two batteries were deployed to the Kabul area of Afghanistan in early 2002.
On the afternoon of 19th March 2003 7 Para RHA fired the first shots of the Iraq war by any coalition ground forces. The next day they crossed the border in support of the US I Marine Expeditionary Force. The regiment was instrumental in securing the strategic Rumalya oilfields and supporting the MEF in their move north to Nasiriyah.
106 Regiment (Yeomanry) RA
106 is the only yeomanry regiment left in the Royal Artillery and is unique in that it is also the only reserve close air defence regiment. It is based in London, Portsmouth and Southampton. Equipped with the Lightweight Multiple Launcher (LML) system, the battery supports 12 (Minden) Air Assault Battery, part of 16 Air Assault Brigade. The battery found itself heavily involved in Op Olympics in 2012 providing security and manning Air Defence sites throughout London.
The Regiment is composed of three batteries namely 265 based in Grove Park, London; 457 based at Southampton and 295 based in Portsmouth.
Each year the Company award the best NCO with the Davidson Cup and an engraved tankard.
South East London Army Cadet Force (SELACF) Detachments 96, 97 and 109
The Company have a long tradition of supporting the activities of the SELACF particularly those companies attached to the Royal Artillery namely 96, 97 and 109 Detachments.
In 2016 these detachments were paraded at the home of the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, Napier Lines in Woolwich, and were issued their new Royal Horse Artillery cap badges.
Each year the Company awards the best RA badged cadet NCO with a purse of £200, a framed citation and a model of the Nery Gun. To be selected for this award is highly prestigious and competitive. The award is made annually at the Installation Court and is attended by the winner, the Detachment Commander and the Regimental Commandant.
From time to time the Company provides financial support to the cadets to enable as many as possible to take part in visits to places of historic military interest. Examples would be 2017’s trip to the Somme battlefields and the 2018 visit to the Ypres Salient.
The Master, Clerk and Military Liaison Officer (MLO) review the RA badged cadets over an evening visit on one of their usual troop nights.
The cadets also provide a carpet guard at Mansion House and other events. To be part of this group is regarded as very special and there is a waiting list of cadets who wish to be involved.
No 12 (Bomber) Squadron (NOW DISBANDED)
Royal Air Force
This affiliation is awaiting news of the future deployment/renaming of this Squadron.