The Royal Scots

The Royal Scots The Royal Scots Regimental Trust is a charitable body registered in Scotland, with registration number SC008001. They were to stay until 1831.

The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment), once known as the Royal Regiment of Foot, was the oldest, and therefore most senior, infantry regiment of the line in the British Army, having been raised in 1633 during the reign of Charles I of Scotland. Registered Office: The Regimental Office, The Royal Scots Club, 29-31 Abercromby Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6QE

The Royal Scots, the oldest Infantry Regiment of the Line in the British Army, was formed in 1633 when Sir John Hepburn under a Royal Warrant granted by King Charles I, raised a body of men in Scotland for service in France. By 1635 he commanded a force of over 8,000, including many who had fought as mercenaries in the "Green Brigade" for King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden. It was by virtue of the Royal Warrant that the entire Regiment was considered as British; a regular force in a standing Army which could be recalled to Britain at will. In 1661, the Regiment was, in fact summoned to Britain to bridge the gap between the disbandment of the New Model Army and the creation of a Regular Army, organised along the same lines as the British units in foreign service. The Regiment was thus the original model for all others. In 1680 the Regiment was sent to Tangier and won its first Battle Honour. On its return to England in 1684 the title "The Royal Regiment of Foot" was conferred by Charles II. During Monmouth's rebellion in 1685, five companies formed part of the force concentrated against the rebels who they met at Sedgemoor. The following year, the Regiment was divided into two battalions and was not to have less until 1949. The Royal Scots saw service under Malborough during the War of the Spanish Succession and followed this with garrison duty in Ireland where they remained until 1742. From this date the two battalions were usually to be separated and posted far apart. The 1st Battalion moved in 1743 to Germany to take part in the Austrian War of Succession, and was involved in the Battle of Fontenoy. In the following year, the 2nd Battalion became involved in the fight against the Young Pretender which culminated in the Battle of Culloden. In 1751 the army was numbered and thereafter the Regiment was officially designated the First or Royal Regiment of Foot. The War of Austrian Succession had not settled the chief issue between Britain and France - colonial supremacy. Both in India and America the fighting continued and most of the Regiment's active service in the 35 years which followed was to be in the New World. From Canada to the West Indies, during the Seven Years War, the 2nd Battalion found itself involved in many actions including the capture of Montreal in 1760 and Havana in 1762. Then, after a period of home service and in the Mediterranean, it was the turn of the 1st Battalion for service in the West Indies. Disease rather than the enemy accounted for most deaths; between 1793 and 1796 the British lost 40,000 men in the West Indies of which The Royals lost 5 officers and 400 men, well over half the battalion strength. During the Napoleonic Wars the Regiment was increased to a strength of four battalions. The 1st Battalion spent the entire period of the war in the Americas and the 2nd Battalion took part in the capture of Egypt (1801), then moved to the West Indies (1803-05), before travelling to India, the first time that any part of the Regiment had been there. In contrast the 3rd and 4th Battalions remained in Europe, with the 4th Battalion on home service until 1812 supplying drafts for the other three battalions. The 3rd Battalion first saw action at Corunna in 1808 and then took part in the Peninsular War. There followed the Battles of Quatre Bras and Waterloo which cost the battalion 363 casualties out of a strength of 624. Two years later it was disbanded; the 4th Battalion having suffered a similar fate the previous year. The next ninety years produced a considerable number of moves for both the 1st and the 2nd battalions with action in India in 1817-31 where the 2nd Battalion was stationed. The Crimean War was the next major campaign for the Regiment; the 1st Battalion arriving in time for the Battle of Alma. The Regiment's first VC was won by Private Prosser during the Siege of Sevastopol for two acts of heroism. In 1900 the 1st Battalion joined British forces in South Africa for service in the Boer War. Most of the time was spent on mobile column work, patrolling and raiding expeditions. World War I saw the number of battalions increased to 35 of which 15 served as active front line units. More than 100,000 men passed through these battalions, of whom 11,162 were killed and over 40,000 wounded. Seventy-one Battle Honours and 6 VCs were awarded to the Regiment as well as innumerable individual medals. The active service battalions were involved in all areas from the Western Front to the Dardanelles, Macedonia, Egypt and North Russia. In 1918 HRH Princess Mary became Colonel-in-Chief, a position she was to hold until her death in March 1965. Demobilisation soon reduced the Regiment's strength to peacetime numbers but in the years that followed there was little rest from active service as the two regular battalions moved between Ireland, Egypt, Burma, China and the North West Frontier with short periods in home service. At the start of World War II, the 1st Battalion embarked for France as part of the BEF. Forced into the retreat which was to end at Dunkirk, they never made the road to freedom. After a desperate defence across the Bethune-Merville road, and after suffering appalling losses, many were taken prisoner and few escaped home. The 2nd Battalion, based in Hong Kong, saw action when the Japanese attacked in December 1941. Here too, The Royal Scots fought like tigers but the result was inevitable. The 1st Battalion was reconstituted after Dunkirk and took part in the Arakan campaign in Burma in 1943 and the Battle of Kohima in 1944. A new 2nd Battalion (originally the 12th) was formed in May 1942 and served in Italy and Palestine whilst the 7th/9th and 8th fought in Europe after D-Day. During WorId War II, the posthumous award of the George Cross to Capt Douglas Ford was a unique distinction within the Regiment

After 1945 the Regiment continued to serve in many parts of the world, including Germany, Korea, Cyprus, Suez, Aden and Northern Ireland. In 1949 the two regular battalions amalgamated, the first time since 1686 that the Regiment had been without a Second battalion, In 1983 the Regiment celebrated its 350th Anniversary and Her Majesty announced the appointment of her daughter, HRH The Princess Royal, to be Colonel-in-Chief. In December 1990 the 1st battalion deployed to Saudi Arabia as an Armoured Infantry battalion to take part in the Gulf War. Since which time it also served operationally in Bosnia and Iraq. In 2006, we merged with other Scottish Infantry Regiments to form The Royal Regiment of Scotland. The direct link is to The Royal Scots Borderers or 1 SCOTS. Today, The Royal Scots Trust, Regimental Association, Benevolence Society and Museum represent and continue its proud heritage - promoting comradeship across The Royal Scots Regimental family, supporting individuals in times of greatest need and upholding the traditions and achievements of times past, in honour of those who have given their service and their lives. We are very proud to have as our Patron our former Colonel-in-Chief, HRH The Princes Royal, Princess Anne, who is also the Royal Colonel of 1 SCOTS.

Operating as usual

From the Regimental Office, David Jack It is with deepest sorrow that The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment) marks the dea...

From the Regimental Office, David Jack

It is with deepest sorrow that The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment) marks the death of our Sovereign, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. The Regiment is proud to have served her and it is an enduring honour and privilege to have done so. She was, and will continue to be, held in the highest esteem in the Regiment. Her unwavering commitment is the finest example for us all to follow. Our thoughts and prayers are with The Princess Royal, Royal Patron of the Regimental Association, and all members of The Royal Family and we share their grief as they mourn.

OBITUARYMAJOR CHARLES JOHN RICHARD ERRINGTON12 August 1918 – 29 August 2022 A Pre-War Regular Officer who evaded a Germa...



12 August 1918 – 29 August 2022

A Pre-War Regular Officer who evaded a German massacre in 1940, survived five years as a Prisoner Of War (POW) and narrowly avoided the bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem in 1946.

Major Charles John Richard Errington, always known as John, who has died aged 104. was the oldest surviving veteran of The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment). Along with that achievement he was the last surviving officer commissioned into the Regiment (and possibly the British Army) before the Second World War. He was the last survivor of the epic stand by the Regiment's 1st Battalion (1RS), along with 2nd Battalion, The Royal Norfolk Regiment at Le Paradis holding part of the outer perimeter of the Dunkirk bridgehead. Their action, delaying the main German thrust over the three critical days of 27-30 May 1940, and fighting until the last round, assisted the bulk of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) to slip behind them to escape from the harbour and beaches back to England, over 100 of those who survived the Battle, including many wounded, were subsequently massacred by troops of the German SS Division Totenkopf – a fact which only emerged towards the end of the War and has never been fully investigated.

After surviving the war as a POW, Errington re-joined the Regiment before being posted to the Middle East Centre for Arab Studies (MECAS) in Jerusalem to improve the Arabic he had learnt in the POW camp from a Palestinian civilian member of the Pioneer Corps. On 22 July 1946 their Arabic tutor kept them later than usual into their lunch hour. They would normally have lunched in the King David Hotel. At 12.26 that day the Hotel was virtually destroyed by a bomb planted by the Zionist insurgent group, the Irgun, killing 91 in and around the Hotel and wounding many more. John Errington always believed that their tutor knew what was about to happen and deliberately held them back that day.

John Errington was born on 12 August (The Glorious Twelfth!) 1918 at the family home, Beeslack, which was, quite literally, over the wall from the Regiment's Depot at Glencorse Barracks, just east of Penicuik. He was the second of two sons and two daughters. His father and maternal grandfather had both been Royals. He was educated at Wellington College. Keen to fly, he first joined the RAF and went to Cranwell. When his elder brother, Lancelot (Lance} elected to join the Civil Service, John, having qualified as a pilot, transferred to Sandhurst from where he was commissioned, in July of 1938, being the third direct generation of the family to join the Regiment. An earlier maternal forbear had fought with the Regiment at Waterloo.
(Lance went to Trinity College, Cambridge, achieving a double first, served in the RN during the War, and retired in 1976 having been Permanent secretary at the Department of Health and Social Security. On retirement he was knighted for his services. He died in 2001.)

Errington deployed to France with 1RS as part of the BEF in 1939 in the appointment of Regimental Signals Officer. As such, he was issued with a motorcycle which delighted him. On 10 May 1940 the Germans launched their attack on Belgium and the Battalion moved forward to positions on the River Wavre. The German blitzkrieg forced them back into France and to a defensive position in the area around Le Paradis where he worked with Battalion Headquarters in a farmhouse. When it was set on fire they moved to a building across the road from where they successfully beat off German attacks. Errington positioned himself at the upstairs windows from where, and much to his delight, he knocked out some enemy light armoured vehicles with a Boyes anti-tank rifle. Under cover of darkness on the night of 27 May, and led by Major Bruce the Adjutant, and, by now the acting Commanding Officer, the survivors took shelter hiding in a barn a little distance away. Two mornings later (a local knocked on the door and asked for a cigarette) -they had been surrounded by German troops and were captured. During that final battle he had sent two of his signallers off on his motorcycle to try and locate Brigade Headquarters. They never returned. He always feared that they had been killed or massacred as had many of the wounded soldiers left behind. It was seventy years later before he learnt the good news that they had been captured and survived.

After a very long march across Northern France and into Germany he spent five years as a POW. He remembered that he was never bored. He kept himself busy learning Arabic, as mentioned above, reading books sent from home. He had learnt to sail as a young boy and now studied sailing manuals to further his knowledge This prepared him for a lifetime of sailing post War. His sister who lived on Mull arranged for food parcels to be sent to him from Edinburgh's best shops. These included ci**rs which he used as currency. He was respected by his German guards as he was able to tum his hand to many practical repairs in the Camp. At one point he was in Oflag V11-C with officers of the 51st Highland Division and remembers practising the newly invented Reel of the 51st Highland Division.

Post War, and after attending MECAS, he was posted to the Combined Intelligence Centre at RAF Habbaniya in the then lraq. Whist there he met Brenda Reeves who worked at the British Embassy in Baghdad. Apart from meeting his future wife, who he married at Habbaniya in June 1948, he enjoyed visiting the Embassy as he could get good whisky there at a reasonable price!

He attended The Staff College in 1950 before being promoted to Major and posted to Military Intelligence in the War Office in 1952 and, subsequently, Malaya during the Emergency from 1953-1956 for which he was Mentioned in Despatches 'for distinguished service'. After returning to the Regimental Depot at Glencorse, his final posting was to Libya in May 1958 again in Intelligence. At the end of this posting, he bought a car and, with a Sergeant, drove home to the UK, passing through France and visiting Le Paradis en route. This was the last time he visited the town. He took redundancy on March 1959.

In retirement, after attending Agricultural College in Aberdeen, he farmed the family farm in Kincardineshire. A noted sportsman in many fields he became a very enthusiastic dinghy and offshore sailor, sailing his cruising yacht, Prince Vreckan, well into his 90s and having taught all his family to sail. A grandson has become a Master Mariner. He enjoyed swimming and, aged over 100, still swam in the public baths in Kirkcudbright.

His wife, Brenda died in 2018, and one daughter, Jane, pre-deceased him in 2020. He is survived by his other two daughters, Leila and Anne, 6 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.

The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment)
Thursday, 1st September 2022


From David Jack

It is with great sadness that I pass on the news that Major John Errington died peacefully at home in Shrewsbury yesterday evening, Mon 29 Aug 2022. Our thoughts are with his family and friends. He had recently enjoyed his 104th birthday on 12 Aug 2022. He was a remarkable man and a loyal member of the Regiment. Details of the funeral will be promulgated when known.


We had a serious problem with the website today however it is now operational again but some items from the guestbook will have been lost unfortunatly we could not save them.

Latest: Forecast of Events - 2022 / 23The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment), formed in 1633, was the oldest and senior infantry regiment in the British Army until its amalgamation in 2006, with the other Scottish Infantry Regiments to form The Royal Regiment of Scotland. The direct link was to their....

Photos from The Royal Scots Club's post

Photos from The Royal Scots Club's post

Free Tours in Scotland | August 2022
Free Tours in Scotland | August 2022

Free Tours in Scotland | August 2022

There is a wealth of world war history across all four corners of the United Kingdom. From large CWGC war cemeteries and memorials to single headstones in remote churchyards, you're never too far away from a one of our sites.

Maj John Errington | The Royal Scots
Maj John Errington | The Royal Scots

Maj John Errington | The Royal Scots

Maj John Errington In News by Jim Anderson12/08/2022Leave a Comment Loading… Taking too long? Reload document | Open in new tab Download [627.59 KB]

The Thistle Vol 40 Winter 2021/22 is now available to read or download.
Regimental Journal | The Royal Scots

The Thistle Vol 40 Winter 2021/22 is now available to read or download.

All regimental journals are in PDF format. Just click on the year below to read and print, The latest copy can be viewed online if you wish Summer 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 Winter 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021

And they did not need a passport or ID

And they did not need a passport or ID
Jimmy Morton Medal: 16th Royal Scots (McCrae`s Battalion) | Dunfermline Athletic Football Club

Jimmy Morton Medal: 16th Royal Scots (McCrae`s Battalion) Thursday, 21st Jul 2022The Heritage Trust bring important medal to East End Park Dunfermline Athletic are pleased to note that the Dunfermline Athletic Heritage Trust have acquired the War Medal belonging to James (Jimmy) Morton of Dunfermlin...

Nagpore Dinner 24th September 2022All members of the RS Regimental Family accompanied by wives, partners, relatives and ...
Nagpore Dinner 24th September 2022 | The Royal Scots

Nagpore Dinner 24th September 2022
All members of the RS Regimental Family accompanied by wives, partners, relatives and guests, Any Old Royals who happen not be Association members are encouraged to join and should contact Mr T Douglas / Mr T Logan

Nagpore Dinner 24th September 2022 In News by Jim Anderson11/07/2022Leave a Comment Loading… Taking too long? Reload document | Open in new tab Download [115.68 KB]

Photos from The Chelsea Pensioners's post

Photos from The Chelsea Pensioners's post


From David Jack


The Southern Branch of the Association is kindly organising the Royal Scots participation in Remembrance events in London in Nov 2022. These will include:
12 Nov at 1800 – A Regimental cross planting service a the Field of Remembrance
13 Nov Royal Scots contingent participation in the parade at the Cenotaph
13 Nov after the parade – Lunch
Anyone wishing to attend any of these events should notify the Chairman of the Southern Branch, Christopher Delacombe or the Regt Sec at [email protected] no later that 16 Aug 2022. There may be some flexibility for late additions to the cross planting service or lunch, but this is a hard deadline for participation in the parade.

From Christopher Delacombe

Dear Association Officers and Branch Chairmen
I am now in the process of planning the regimental Remembrance Weekend activities in London. These include the very special Cenotaph Parade preceded the evening before by a regimental cross planting service in the Westminster Abbey Field of Remembrance and with the parade on the Sunday traditionally followed by a lunch in the East India Club in St James’s Square.
Please see the email below which I circulated yesterday and bring it to your branch members’ attention. We would hope to see as many marchers from North of the border as possible.
I need to know the names of any prospective marchers by no later than 17 August along with their personal details for security reasons as follows:
First name
Date of birth
Place of birth
Country of birth
Home address – including post code
Service number
Dates of service
Let us make it a really good regimental turn out
Best wishes to all


From 02/06/2022 Jim Blythe


“The further back you look, the better you see the future” Winston Churchill.

Old Royals may be interested to learn that I was asked to join Lt Col Gordon Vevers (RHQ SCOTS Heritage) and Mr Tom Gordon (RS Museum) in conducting a check of RS Silver, Pictures and Property in the 1 RANGER Officers, Sergeants and Corporals Messes last week.

We were very well received by 1 RANGER. In particular the CO, an Old Royal himself, is particularly keen to demonstrate 1 RANGER heritage via 1 SCOTS and going back to both antecedents, in order to demonstrate to visitors that the new 1 RANGER unit stands on the shoulders of giants, including readers of this who served in RS.

You will probably know that a quantity of silver has already been backloaded to the RS Museum and there is an intention to display some of this 1 RS silver in the RS Club, alongside the silver already on display there, mainly having come from our Territorial and Volunteer battalions. The reason for the silver being backloaded is that messes are now contractualised right across the Army and unit establishments no longer provide for regimental mess staff, so only a limited amount can be managed realistically.

Pictures are a different story. Provided that frames are in good repair, pictures can be hung on the walls to look after themselves as long as light levels are not so high as to risk fading. RS pictures are generally in good order and certainly much better than on my last visit pre-Covid. Both the Officers and the Sergeants Messes are well appointed with pictures charting RS history from 1633 to 2006. I have suggested that some should be hung more prominently but that some scenes with no regimental connections might be considered for backloading.

So, the picture situation is stable, at least for the present and the foreseeable future. There had been the possibility of a move to another station where wall space for hanging pictures would have been much reduced. This would have introduced the question of what to do with them, the answer to which is that many would join those already hanging in the RS Club, where there is already a wealth of RS heritage, as those who use the Club will be familiar.

We also checked property that spans a multitude of regimental items: furniture, crockery, pipe banners, drums and all else that doesn’t fall neatly under either silver or pictures. The final item to be checked was the Alva bell, cast in 1633 and presented in 1983 during the RS 350 year that used to be on the guardroom veranda. The original frame on which it had hung suffered weather damage over the years and the bell had dropped resulting in a crack. This has been repaired and a stout new frame constructed. The bell is now in the dining hall where it is not only sheltered from the elements but where it can be seen by those going in and out daily.

All in all, that part of our heritage that is in the stewardship of 1 RANGER is being respected, celebrated, maintained and displayed to good effect, with the RS Museum paying close attention to its present and future.

Lt Col W J Blythe

A few photographs from our recent visit to the 1st Battalion Ranger Regiment.

A few photographs from our recent visit to the 1st Battalion Ranger Regiment.



HMS Albion will be in Leith as part of the Queens Platinum Jubilee celebrations. On Saturday 04 June the Captain has agreed to open the ship for visitors, this is a seldom available opportunity to see onboard one of the Royal Navy’s largest ships.

Tickets are available at the link below from 1000 25 May 22.Visit HMS Albion in Edinburgh Tickets, Sat, Jun 4, 2022 at 10:00
There is no available onsite parking, the nearest available is Ocean Terminal shopping complex a 5 minute walk from the ship.

Please note: This a Royal Navy working ship, whilst onboard the guests are recommended to wear sensible/ flat footwear as passage throughout the ship requires ascending fixed ladders/steps, also, ladies should wear trousers.


The Regimental Office, The Royal Scots Club

General information

This is the Official page of The Royal Scots (The Royal Regiment)

Opening Hours

Monday 9am - 5pm
Tuesday 9am - 5pm
Wednesday 9am - 5pm
Thursday 9am - 5pm
Friday 9am - 5pm






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Winter hours are here!

From today (Saturday 1st October), The Museum of The Royal Scots and The Royal Regiment of Scotland will be operating on our reduced winter opening times. We are now open:

Saturday - Sunday from 9.30am - 4.30pm
Monday - Friday from 9.30am - 3.45pm

Last entry is 15 minutes before closing time.

Edinburgh Castle remains open until 5pm each day.
We encourage serving members and veterans of the Regiment to get in touch with the Museum in advance of planning your visit to guarantee entry.
Due to the current high winds at Edinburgh Castle, the Museum will be closed today (Friday 30th September).

The Royal Scots
Hello Everybody
It's hard work when your a veteran with cancer, it's a good thing you know other veterans are in the same boat, talk to them, they might just help you get trough it
On this day in 1983, a 10 man team from the 1st Bn The Royal Scots, The Royal Regiment, as part of the 350th Anniversary of the raising of the regiment summited Mount Athabasca 11,500 ft. It was a tremendous achievement for the team. The photo shows part of the team on the summit including Rab Johnstone, Bob Blair, Hamish McPherson and Billy Scott. Little did we know that a few months later in 1984, Billy would lose his life on Cairngorm while being assessed for his MLC winter certificate.

Dave Dickson Steven Brown Mark Mcleod Andrew Barr-Sim
Ineligible platoon free fall course with golden lions circa 1980
Hi guys, need a wee favour if anyone can help. Does anybody have a copy of the C Coy company photo from the NTH tour in 1994/5. Many Thanks
Some pictures from the 200th Anniversary of the Battle of Lundy’s Lane, the war of 1812. I attend on behalf of the Association in 2014.
8 years ago I laid a wreath for the Royal Scots Association on the 200th Anniversary for the Battle of Lundy’s Lane in Canada.
Please help a Veteran survive cancer, if you have had cancer, ex-military, and are able to share your story, then please join us. Veterans Cancer Support, or join our Facebook group for a chat.
I cannot believe that in a few days time, it will be 50 years, that the 1st Battalion The Royal Scots took a very significant part in Operation Motorman. John Anderson ex 10 Plt. C Coy 1RS wifes facebook
Many years ago 16th Battalion Royal Scots.
Today was Founders Day at the Royal Hospital Chelsea and we had a visit from Lt Col Jim Blythe MBE. Colonel Jim (aka Jungle Jim :) ) was able to meet In-Pensioners Danny Dempsey and Andy Kay. Great to see him down here, such a long way from our heartland.

Is this Royal Scots from WW1.
My Grandfather Hugh Macpherson
1st Battalion Royal Scots
The Royal Scot.
I am trying to find out what uniform this was, I've been doing research and struggling to find anything. I know the medal was from the India war but not sure if this was the royal Scots uniform? Can anyone help? Thanks

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