Grenadier, 3rd Foot, 1725 (Royal East Kent – The Buffs)
The Buffs (Royal East Kent) merged into The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment in 1992
The Buffs (Royal East Kent Regiment), formerly the 3rd Regiment of Foot, was a line infantry regiment of the British Army garrisoned at Canterbury with a history dating back to 1572. The origins of the regiment were Thomas Morgan’s Company of Foot, a group of 300 volunteers from the London Trained Bands formed in 1572 for service in Holland. It was one of the oldest regiments in the British Army, ranked as the 3rd Regiment of the line. It provided distinguished service over four hundred years accumulating 116 battle honours. In 1935, it became the Buffs (Royal East Kent Regiment); in 1966 it became part of the Queen’s Regiment and in 1992 part of The Princess of Wales’ Royal Regiment (“The Tigers“). The grenadier cap displays the crest of the colonel, Sir Charles Wills, which was unusual, and was forbidden later. The coat is single-breasted, with no lapels, the large cuffs staying up by buttons through to the sleeves. Armed with a flintlock, he has the basket-hilted sword common at this time. He would have a ring-bayonet mounted in a frog over the sword. In 1742 the design for grenadier was mandated as the royal cipher under a crown, on a cap of the facing colour. An exception was made in the case of the Six Old Corps, which could retain their old badges, and among these were the 3rd who retained the dragon, ‘their ancient badge’. This dragon is not illustrated on this cap and is likely the Tudor dragon, dating back to the London Train Bands. They returned home in 1665 to be placed on the regular establishment, exchanging their buff coats for scarlet, but retaining buff as their facing colour. With connections to East Kent they were known from the beginning as The Buffs, a name which survived until amalgamation into today’s Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment.
Source: Memorial tablet to Sir Charles Wills (appointed Commander 5th Foot on 5th January 1716) in Westminster Abbey.
|Dimensions||24 × 37.5 cm|