7th Battalion The Rifles (7 RIFLES)
7 RIFLES is The Rifles' Reserve Infantry Battalion of London and the South East and is paired with 5 RIFLES . It is comprised of 500 part-time soldiers from a wide variety of backgrounds and has bases in London, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Wiltshire. The Battalion has three rifle companies and a headquarters company, each comprising approximately 100 soldiers, plus its accomplished, 30-strong Waterloo Band and Bugles that covers ceremonial engagements. The Battalions's principal mission is to train and prepare Reserve Riflemen for front line operations, where they alongside and integrated within Regular RIFLES units.
Reserve service in 7 RIFLES allows individuals to work outside the Army and yet commit to being a Rifleman part time. Training takes place over periodic weekends throughout the year, training nights during the week and for a consolidated 2-week period each year. Attendance at any specific training event is voluntary to take account of an individuals's civilian commitments, but Reserve Riflemen are paid for the training they undertake and can earn a financial bonus at the end of each year. The training is very varied, based upon the sort of skills all people need and includes military training, adventurous training, fitness training and sport, together with overseas travel. Reserve Riflemen wishing to commit to further training or an operational tour alongside a Regular unit have the opportunity to do so. Ex Regular Army officers and soldiers are very welcome and joining the Reserve may attract a financial bonus.
Looking to join the Reserves
The Roles available within 7 RIFLES are not restricted to Infantry, allowing a wider choice of part time jobs to be available:
The Waterloo Band and Bugles of the Rifles is part of 7 Rifles and rehearses in our own purpose-built modern band block on the same site as A Coy at Edward Brooks Barracks, Abingdon. We wear the same uniforms, play the same type of music and get paid the same as our colleagues in the Regular Army, but only part-time. We fit the band commitment of training and engagements around our full-time jobs, at evenings and weekends.
The band’s regimental traditions date back as far as the Peninsular Wars, and includes the use of the silver bugle (both played and worn) and a distinctly fast marching speed of 140 paces per minute; our regiment ‘Sounds’ Retreat, as opposed to other regiments that ‘Beat’ Retreat.
The Waterloo Band and Bugles perform locally, across the UK and internationally both for military and public events. Last year the band played at the Basel International Tattoo in Switzerland, this year we will be attending the Bermuda Tattoo. The band and bugles perform altogether in a marching band for events such as Freedom and Homecoming Parades, and marching displays for county shows, garden parties and charity events, and as a sit-down 35 piece concert band performing a wide range of music from traditional classical pieces and show tunes to modern pop arrangements. We can break down into a Mess band, brass quintet, clarinet quin `tet and saxophone quartet for smaller venues. Our bugle platoon performs both with the band and alone as a platoon or in smaller numbers playing traditional calls, for example for weddings, funerals and Remembrance ceremonies.
Both the band and bugle platoon are recruiting now. We rehearse on a Tuesday evening from 19.45 – 21.45hrs. Please phone either the Band PSI or Band Recruiter on 01235 548028 for more information.