The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers
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The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers was formed on April 23rd 1968, as part of the reforms of the army that saw the creation of the first 'large infantry regiment', With the amalgamation of the four English fusilier regiments these were,
- The Royal Northumberland Fusiliers
- The Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers
- The Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment)
- The Lancashire Fusiliers
Each former regiment has an exceptional place in military history, from the Northumberland Fusiliers winning of the Hackle at the battle of St Lucia, to the Lancashire Fusiliers winning 6 Victoria Crosses at Gallipoli. The Royal Warwickshires led the way on D-Day while the Royal Fusiliers counter attack at Albuhera in 1813 undoubtedly saved Wellingtons campaign in Spain against Napoleon.
The Fusiliers take their title from the time of King James II in 1685 when he ordered Lord Dartmouth to form an Ordnance Regiment to guard the artillery. He called them my Royal Regiment of Fuzileers and had them armed with the Fusil, the most up to date weapon of the day. The Regiment became the 7th of Foot, the Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) and other infantry regiments subsequently became Fusiliers, the most famous of which, the royal Northumberland (5th of Foot), Lancashire (XX of Foot) and in the 1960s the Royal Warwickshire (6th of Foot) together with the Royal Fusiliers formed the Royal Regiment of Fusilier in 1968 (Englands Finest)
As a fusilier regiment, the RRF wears a hackle, which in this case is the hackle of the Royal Northumberland Fusiliers, red over white. This distinction was originally a white plume which His Majesty's Fifth Regiment of Foot had taken from the head dress of fallen French troops at St. Lucia in December 1778. The Fifth Regiment of Foot became His Majesty's Fifth (Northumberland) Regiment of Foot with the county affiliations of 1782. In 1829 King George IV ordered the white plume to be worn by all infantry regiments, and in order not to take away from the Fifth (Northumberland) Regiment of Foot's battle honour, their plume was distinguished by being made red over white. This came from the legend that the men of the Fifth (Northumberland) Regiment of Foot having dipped the white plumes in the blood of the French at St. Lucia. The Fifth (Northumberland) Regiment of Foot did not become the Fifth Regiment of Foot (Northumberland Fusiliers) until 1836, later in 1881 they became The (Fifth) Northumberland Fusiliers and finally in 1935 The (Fifth) Royal Northumberland Fusiliers.