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Small Arms School Corps

The School of Musketry with its Corps of Instructors was formally established on 1 April 1854 at Hythe, Kent, although the first instructors were working at Hythe from mid 1853.

The School was established by Lord Hardinge who, as Master General Ordnance, was determined to ensure that the best possible use was made of the greatly improved rifle musket then coming into service. From its inception a section of the School was responsible for user testing of infantry weapons and the exemplary collection of weapons in the Infantry and SASC Weapons Collection bears witness to this work.

The Corps Headquarters was then renamed the Small Arms School Corps in 1929 and a Vickers Machine Gun was incorporated into the cap badge. This reflected the change in name adapted for the School at Hythe in 1919 and for the expanding School, which now included Netheravon, that took on responsibility for the Vickers Machine Gun.

With the move of the Small Arms Wing from Hythe to Warminster in 1969 the Headquarters of the Corps was part of the School of Infantry and renamed Depot SASC. In 1996 under 'Options for Change' Headquarters SASC was formed as an integral part of the newly formed Headquarters Infantry.

Badge

The original badge of the School was crossed rifles surmounted by a crown. In 1929 the present badge was introduced, comprising of crossed rifles and a Vickers machine gun, surmounted by a crown and surrounded by a laurel wreath. The title Small Arms School Corps came into being at this time.

Corps March

On the occasion of the centenary of the Corps in 1953, March of the Bowmen from the Robin Hood Suite was adopted as the Corps March.

Recruiting

The SASC does not recruit directly from civilian life, but only accepts applications from soldiers already serving in the British Army. All its members hold a minimum rank of Sergeant. Reservists transfer to the SASC from All Arms and Services, although primarily from the Infantry.

The principal source of volunteers is successful students attending School of Infantry Phase 3 courses at Infantry Battle School at Brecon, Infantry Training Centre (ITC) Warminster, SASC Training Advisory Group (Germany) and the Armoured Fighting Vehicle (AFV) Gunnery School at Lulworth who are identified as having the potential to be future members of the SASC. In addition, any eligible soldier holding an appropriate instructor qualification, such as All Arms Skill at Arms Instructor, may apply to transfer.

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