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Short History of the London Rifle Brigade

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PART I. Formation.

The London Rifle Brigade, formerly the 1st London Volunteer Rifle Corps (City of London Rifle Volunteer Brigade), and now, officially, the 5th (City of London) Battalion, The London Regiment, London Rifle Brigade, familiarly known to its members and the public generally by the sub-title or the abbreviation "L.R.B.," was founded July 23rd, 1859, at a meeting convened by the Lord Mayor. It has always been intimately associated with the City of London, its companies being under the patronage of the various Wards.

Within a week of its formation the muster of the Regiment exceeded 1,800; two battalions were formed and headquarters were taken at No. 8, Great Winchester Street, where they remained for 34 years, and subsequently in Finsbury Pavement.

In 1893 the Regiment entered its present headquarters in Bunhill Row. These were designed by the late Lieut.-Colonel Boyes, erected entirely from regimental funds, supplemented by contributions from members of the Brigade, from various City Companies and other friends of the Regiment, and constitute the finest building of its kind in London.

Since the formation of the Territorial Force these headquarters have been shared with the Post Office Rifles.

Honorary Colonel.

Mr. Alderman Carter was at first appointed Honorary Colonel, but in 1860 it was suggested that a military Honorary Colonel would be more appropriate than a civilian one, and Mr. Carter (then Lord Mayor) approached H.R.H. the Duke of Cambridge, who, in response to the unanimous wish of the Regiment, accepted the appointment, which he held until his death in 1904. During this period he rarely missed attending the annual inspection.

Commanding Officers.

In 1862 a resolution was passed at a meeting "that Regimental Commanding Officers should now and always be Officers of professional experience and ability." This tradition has been departed from on only two occasions prior to the war, as shown in the list given on the following page.

Name. From. To. G. M. Hicks (late 41st Regiment) 30/12/59 January, 1862. G. Warde (late 51st Regiment) February, 1862 Early, 1876. Sir A. D. Hayter, Bt. (late Grenadier Guards) Early, 1876 1881. W. H. Haywood (Ex London Rifle Brigade) 1881 1882. Lord Edward Pelham-Clinton (late Rifle Brigade)      June, 1882 1890. H. C. Cholmondeley (late Rifle Brigade) 1890 February, 1901. Edward Matthey (Ex London Rifle Brigade) February, 1901 4/6/01. Lord Bingham (late Rifle Brigade) June, 1901 1913. Earl Cairns (late Rifle Brigade) 1913 1915. Norman C. King (Ex London Rifle Brigade) 1915 1st Battalion. Earl Cairns 4/8/14 16/3/15. A. S. Bates (Ex London Rifle Brigade) 16/3/15 15/8/16. R. H. Husey (Ex London Rifle Brigade) 15/8/16 2nd Battalion. G. R. Tod (late Seaforth Highlanders) September, 1914 3rd Battalion. H. C. Cholmondeley 30/11/14 1915. Norman C. King 4/6/15

The Convent.8th to 16th November, 1914. South African War.

Colonel Cholmondeley was appointed to command the Mounted Infantry Section of the C.I.V., to which regiment the London Rifle Brigade contributed 2 officers (Captain C....