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20th Armoured Brigade

The British Army's 20th Armoured Brigade (The Iron Fist) is based in Paderborn, northern Germany, as part of the 1st (United Kingdom) Division. Soldiers serving with the Brigade wear the insignia of a white mailed fist with a blue background - a symbol of the hard punch that this armoured formation gives the enemy.


20th Armoured Brigade was the last brigade to serve on operations in Iraq and its soldiers are currently serving in Afghanistan on Operation Herrick 20. Although it is not deployed as a formed Headquarters it is responsible for ensuring that all regiments and battalions serving in Afghanistan under the recently closed Task Force Helmand (TFH) Headquarters are trained to the highest standards for the final mission.

Previously, the brigade deployed in Afghanistan on HERRICK 15, 2011-2012 and was the lead formation of British troops in Helmand.



20th Armoured Brigade is founded on fine and historic regiments. The composition of the Brigade, currently, is based on one Heavy and one Light Armoured Regiments, supported by three Light Role and one Armoured Infantry Battalions.


Armoured regiments

1st The Queen's Dragoon Guards (QDG) operates in a reconnaissance role and operates ahead of the main armoured and infantry formations. It is the Cavalry Regiment of Wales and the Border Counties (Shropshire, Herefordshire and Cheshire) and the senior Regiment of the Line in the British Army and has 328 years of distinguished history.

The Queen's Royal Hussars (The Queen's Own and Royal Irish) provides the heavy armour capability to the Brigade as a Type 56 Armoured Regiment. It is the senior Light Cavalry Regiment of the British Army with a long history and tradition of excellence. Equipped with the Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank and the Combat Vehicle Reconnaissance (CVR) (Tracked).

Infantry regiments

The 1st and 2nd Battalion The Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment (1PWRR/2PWRR) and the 2nd Battalion The Rifles (2 RIFLES) provide the Brigade with their Light Role Infantry Battalion capabilities.

These Regiments are currently located in Paderborn (1 PWRR), London (2 PWRR) and Northern Ireland (2 RIFLES). 2 PWRR, will be re-subordinated when in moves to Cyprus in the Summer of 2014 and replaced by 4 SCOTS, a Heavy Protected Mobility Infantry Battalion, based in Fallingbostel.

The 5th Battalion The Rifles (5 RIFLES) acts as the Brigades Armoured Infantry regiment, and is equipped with the most potent weapon in the Infantry's armoury; the Warrior Armoured Fighting Vehicle.


Brigade Headquarters

Headquarters 20th Armoured Brigade is currently located in Sennelager, on the outskirts of the city of Paderborn, north Germany. 20th Armoured Brigade is commanded by Brigadier James Swift OBE.

In the future, the headquarters will move back to the UK to the Bulford area and will be renamed as 20th Armoured Infantry Brigade and be a pivotal Brigade in the UKs Reactionary Force – as part of the Army 2020 restructuring.

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