The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers is an infantry regiment of the British Army, part of the Queen’s Division. Currently the regiment has two battalions: the 1st battalion, part of the Regular Army, is an armoured infantry battalion based in Tidworth, Wiltshire, and the fifth battalion, part of the Army Reserve, is based across the northeast of England. There are also a number of independent Reservist Fusilier sub-units based across England. Whilst the Fusiliers traditionally recruited in specific counties, today as an English regiment the Fusiliers recruit nationally. The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers was largely unaffected by the infantry reforms that were announced in December 2004, but under the Army 2020 reduction in size of the Army its second battalion was merged into the first in 2014.
The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers was formed on 23 April 1968 as part of the reforms of the British Army that saw the creation of ‘large infantry regiments’, by the amalgamation of the four English Fusilier regiments
Royal Northumberland Fusiliers
Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers
Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment)
Second Fusiliers awaiting pickup in Helmand Province in 2006
The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers now recruits nationally but retains strong ties with its traditional counties of:
The Fusiliers march in Rochdale
The 3rd battalion of the regiment saw active service in Iraq during the Gulf War in 1991. All battalions were also deployed to Northern Ireland on Operation Banner multiple times
In 2003 the 1 Fusiliers battlegroup were at the forefront of the coalition invasion of Iraq, ultimately occupying the city of Basra. Over the next decade the regiment carried out multiple operational tours of Iraq
In 2006 elements of the second battalion were deployed to Afghanistan to support the International Security Assistance Force. Deployed to the town of Now Zad in Helmand Province, they rapidly found themselves fighting off a sustained Taliban attack that lasted for 107 days – the longest siege of British troops since World War II. Over the following years elements of the regiment deployed on several occasions to Afghanistan and saw heavy fighting. Most recently the entire first battalion deployed to Nahri Saraj District in Helmand in 2013, where they took part in mounted and dismounted infantry operations
The regiment received a reserve battalion, the 5th battalion, through the redesignation of the Tyne-Tees Regiment, on 1 April 2006
In September 2014 the second battalion was amalgamated with the first under Army 2020, forming just one regular battalion – an armoured infantry battalion under 1st Armoured Infantry Brigade
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