The Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry (Territoria1 Army)
The following are a few notes which it is considered may be of help and interest to Officers on joining the Regiment.
(A.) ( 1.) The official title of the Regiment is:-
4th or 5th Battalion, The Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.
The only abbreviation of the above which is recognised within the Regiment is:-
4th or 5th Bn. Oxf. & Bucks. Lt. Infty or 4 or 5/Oxf. & Bucks. Lt. Infty.
In the Army List the abbreviation is "L.I."for Light Infantry, but in the Regiment, we like to feel, being the Senior Light Infantry Regiment in the British Army, that we are just different from other Light Infantry Regiments and so we always use the abbreviation "Lt. Infty."
For telegraphic purposes however OXFBUCKS - one word, may be used.
Other Regimental customs.
Never talk about “Slacks” but always "Trousers" .
Not "Mufti" but "Plain Clothes".
"Jacket" not-"Tunic" when referring to Service Dress. (A Tunic is the scarlet Tunic worn with Full Dress).
"Commanding Officer" not "C.O."
Refer to the Regular Battalions as the 43rd and 52nd. Not 1st and 2nd Battalions. If attached to either of these at any time when referring either to the 43rd or 52nd refer to "The Regiment" not "The Battalion", This dates back from the days when the 43rd and. 52nd were two separate Regiments and the custom has remained.
It is the custom of Officers only to salute the Commanding Officer or Lieut. Cols, of the Regiment the first time they meet them in the day, when off parade. If they meet them in the Mess before parade and say "good morning" this is taken to constitute a salute. They will invariably salute him, whenever met, when on parade.
Within the Regiment (1) It is not the custom to salute Field Officers, The Adjutant or Company Commanders except on parade.
(2) When Officers enter and leave Orderly Room they will salute the Commanding Officer if he is present. If the Adjutant, only, is present he will be saluted only if he is senior to the Officer concerned,
(3) The only Officers addressed as "Sir" are Officers of the rank of Lt._Col. and above. Other Officers are addressed by their rank on parade only. i.e. Capt. Smith, Mr. Robinson, otherwise they are addressed by their Surnames or Christian names according to circumstances ,
It is generally customary for subalterns to salute Officers of Field rank and above of other Regiments. This of course does not apply when meeting Officers of the 43rd, 52nd or Bucks Bn.
In Mess, when a meal is announced, Officers nearest the door should go straight in to the meal and not wait for the senior Officer to proceed, them. This does not apply however when Guests are present.
The King’s Health is never drunk in the Mess nor, when inside the Mess, do Officers stand to attention when the National Anthem Is played. This is a very old Regimental privilege and custom believed to date back to the days of George IV.?
Should an Officer arrive late into dinner he should apologise to the Officer sitting at the end of the table on the right nearest the door and not the—senior present.
Officers will not smoke at dinner until the Port has been round once.
If Officers meet or pass Officers of another Regiment in uniform (or plain clothes if they know them to be Officers) it is the custom to greet them with “good morning” or “good evening” as the case may be.
Should a visitor come to the Mess at any time it is the duty of any Officers in the Mess to make themselves pleasant to him.
(II) DRESS. Regimental Customs.
WHISTLES . A whistle, worn on a Regimental pattern whistle and watch strap, should always be worn with Service Dress except for Ceremonial parades- 'This is a tradition dating back from the days when the Regiment was first trained as Light Infantry under Sir John Moore, when manoeuvres were carried out to the Bugle, or whistle combined with signals.
REGIMENTAL BELT. (Never called a Sam Browne Belt). As far as possible Officers will be dressed in the same fashion as the men. That is to say, if the men are in clean fatigue dress (i.e. without belts) Officers will not wear belts. However when the men are in clean fatigue and carrying rifles or in drill order, officers will wear belts.
When the men are wearing full equipment Officers will wear full equipment as far as it is in their possession. (i.e. Field Glasses, Haversack, compass).
If the men are carrying greatcoats in the Pack, or a waterproof sheet, unmounted Officers will wear a waterproof strapped to the back of the belt. Mounted Officers have theirs affixed to the saddle on their charger. Officers when on parade with troops, will not put on their waterproofs or great coats until there is an order for the men to put on theirs. After the issue of the 1937 Pattern Web Equipment has been made to Officers, this will be worn for all training parades when going out of camp.
REGIMENTAL CANES & ASHPLANT WALKING STICKS. Regimental Canes will be carried by all Officers on drill parades in camp, except when swords are worn. Regimental Canes will not be carried out of camp on field training or route marches. Ashplant Sticks with a crook will be carried by all unmounted Officers on all manoeuvre parades out of camp. When marching to attention or saluting on the march; at the halt, when standing to attention or at ease or saluting, the stick will be carried at the trail in the left hand crook to the front.
(B) Official Correspondence
(1) All official communications from Officers to the Commanding Officer are sent through the Adjutant and are therefore addressed to the Adjutant.
(2) No letter of an official nature will be addressed to the Commanding Officer or Adjutant by name. They must be addressed to "The Officer Commanding" "The Adjutant' so that should, these Officers be away the letters will be opened, by the Officer answering for them. If it is desired that these letters should be opened, by an Officer and not the clerk, they should be marked "Personal". They should, be written as far as possible on foolscap paper or memo forms. Notepaper should NOT be used.
(3) There are 3 types of letter which might be sent to the Adjutant:-
(a) Personal. Marked Personal on the envelope. This can be written in an entirely personal way exactly as if it were a private letter.
(b) In Memo Form. This is the usual form when corresponding about subjects dealing entirely with matters on which a ruling can be given within the Regiment. It takes the following form:
To. The Adjutant
4th Bn. Oxf & Bucks Lt. Infty.
JACKET. Of Barathea with 4 medium sized Regimental Buttons down the front. Two expanding side and two breast pockets. No belt or pleat up the back, but a slit up the back as far as the waist. The sleeves will have pointed cuffs 2 ½ inches wide rising to 6 inches at the point. Plain gilt badges of rank 1 inch between opposite points will be worn on the shoulder straps. Gorget buttons and single cord will be worn on the collar. “T”s will be worn below the badges of rank.
BREECHES. Mounted Officers only. - Cavalry twill with dark buckskin strappings. The colour to be as near that of the Jacket as possible. Breeches will be laced, below the knee, on the inside of the leg.- (These are now obsolescent)*
KNICKERBOCKERS. Dismounted Officers. - Of "Plus four" pattern, of same material as Jacket, the fall over at the knee will not exceed 4 inches. A vertical crease will be maintained down the centre. -(These are now obsolete but will be worn by those in possession until Battle Dress is taken into use)*
CAP. Flexolite, with a medium sized peak. Silver horn and brass gorget buttons. Chin strap -1/2 inch in width.
BELT. Regimental Pattern
SWORD. The scabbard will be covered with brown leather, but the chape will be nickelled metal. Sword knot, black. Regimental pattern; two turns of the knot round the sword hilt.(For the present those officers not in possession of swords need not buy them. Some officers may have relations with old swords which they would, be willing to pass on)
SHIRT, COLLAR & TIE. Dark Khaki. Collar soft double, with square ends, same colour and material as shirt; provided with tabs for attachment to the stud. Tie of the same material and colour as the shirt.
BOOTS. Brown with double row of stitching on the toe caps. Mounted Officers will wear gaiters, spurs and stirrup guards. Dismounted Officers will wear Khaki Puttees, Fox’s Spiral pattern.-*
GAITERS. Mounted. Officers - Brown leather, Army pattern, laces criss-cross.*
SPURS. Plain hunting. 1 inch shank, leather straps of sufficient length to allow the spur to rest along the top of the counter of the boot.-*
GLOVES. Tan leather, fastening with one button.
GREAT COATS, Regulation double breasted.
* Breeches, Knickerbockers "plus four" pattern, Gaiters and Puttees are obsolete, but may be worn on training by those Officers in possession until Battle Dress is taken into use universally.
This will be either of barathea material or as issued to Other Ranks .
(l) Buttons fastening in a fly, except for shoulder straps, which will be fastened as
on the Service Dress Jacket. A button will be sewn at the right position outside the fly to take the Regimental pattern whistle and watch strap. Non polishable buttons will be used,
(2) Ventilation holes under arms.
(3) Light flat buckle at waist.
(1) Large pocket on left leg,
(2 ) Button fastening at ankle .
(3) Pocket for field dressing at top of right leg.
(1) Strap and buckle fastening, with metal tag to strap.
(2) Height 6ins,
(Note Puttees may be worn until these articles are available).
RANK BADGES ETC.
Badges of rank will be of worsted and worn in the manner prescribed, for Service Dress.
This Dress will be in conformity with scaled patterns on view at the Pattern Room, the War Office.
Officers obtaining this dress from other sources than through Ordnance will ensure that their tailors have seen these patterns.
SHIRTS. As for service dress.
HEADDRESS. Drab Field Service. (For camp 1939 Officers will wear the Green Field Service Cap-as used with Blue Serge patrol).
OVERALLS. Will be of the same pattern as worn by other ranks and will be obtained upon payment from the R.A.O.C.
WATERPROOFS. Military pattern with Belt.
PATROL JACKET. Blue Serge with stand up collar, shoulder straps of same material, slits at the bottom of each side seam, 5 medium sized Regimental Buttons down the front.
Two breast patch pockets 6 3/4 inches wide, 8 inches deep, three pointed flap, Gorget button and hole: two similar outside patch pockets below with three pointed flap without buttons. Sleeves with pointed cuffs 2 ½ inches wide, rising to 6 inches at the- point.
A white linen collar will be worn, being fastened to the coat collar with five buttons or studs.
The collar will be cut so as to show 1/8 of an inch above the collar of the Jacket, and with an interval of 1 ½ inches between the, points.
Gorget buttons with blue single' cord will be worn on the collar.
Plain Gilt badges of rank, 1 inch between opposite points will be worn on the shoulder straps.
TROUSERS. Of thin blue barathea - The red stripe will be 1/8 inch wide and will not be sewn down.
FIELD SERVICE CAP. Colour – Rifle Green – old army pattern.
Two Gorget Buttons in front.
Rosette on top in front, and a small silver horn on the left side.
GREEN FORAGE CAP.This is a voluntary article of Kit and should be made in accordance with Army Dress Regulations.
Silver horn and brass Gorget Buttons.
Black patent chin strap ½ inch wide.
Note. The “T”’s will be worn on the shoulder straps of all jackets below the badges of rank – NOT on the collar.
SHIRTS. Showing either stiff or soft white cuff.
SOCKS. Plain black evening or plain navy blue.
BOOTS & SHOES.
(a) For social functions. As for Mess dress.
(b) For Indoor Parades. As for Mess dress or plain black calf with double row of stitching to toe cap.
(c) For Outdoor Parades. Plain black Calf shoes as above or Black boots of same design as for Service Dress.
The following details are published for the guidance of those Officers who may wish to purchase Mess Dress.
It is to be clearly understood that the purchase of Mess Dress is purely voluntary, and that there is no order that Officers are to wear Mess Dress.
JACKET. In accordance with Army Dress Regulations; shoulder straps, of the same colour as the Jacket, will be sewn down, but the stitches will not show, Gold and Silver embroidered badges of rank, 3/8 inch measured between opposite points.
(Note the points of the cuffs will NOT be sewn down).
TROUSERS. As for Undress Order (i.e. Blue Serge Patrol).
WAISTCOAT. Single breasted, with roll collar and two pockets, made of white washing "Marcella", fastened in front with 3 or 4 white enamel buttons of the same pattern as the waistcoat.
SHOES. Patent leather Oxford shoes, without toecaps.
SOCKS. Plain Black evening.
COLLARS. As worn in ordinary Evening Dress.
SHIRTS. Shirts will be made to show two studs.
STUDS & CUFF LINKS. Plain Gold,
TIES. White evening ties.
MEDALS. Miniature Medals will be worn on the left lapel of the Jacket, the top of the ribbons being 1 inch below the level of the tie.
NOTE:- A small “T” will be worn on the shoulder strap, below the badges of rank.
(G) Officers Kit, Active Service.
On embodiment Officers, if passed medically fit, will required to make up their uniform and equipment to the fo1lowing scale.
1 Service Dress Cap,
1 Service' Dress Jacket.
1 pair S.D. Trousers,
1 Suit Battle Dress,
3 Drab Shirts.
4 Drab collars.
1 Drab tie.
1 Regimental Belt,
1 Set Complete Officers Webb equipment 1937.
2 Pairs ankle Boots.
1 whistle & Watch strap.
(A second suit of Battle Dress will no doubt be issued or bought before going overseas).
CAMP KIT .
1 Portable Camp Bedstead.
1 Bag for the above.
1 Waterproof sheet 7' x 4’6”.
1 Collapsible wash-stand with canvas bath, basin and bag.
1 Folding chair.
1 Woolsey valise or kit bag to hold the above with owners name painted on it.