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THE RIFLES

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SWIFT AND BOLD

The Rifles is a large regiment with four Regular and three Reserve Battalions; and a strong link to 4 RANGER. We offer our people the widest range of Infantry roles and locations in the British Army.

Our officers and soldiers have the greatest opportunities to be based close to their home, the widest career options and the high likelihood of deployments overseas.

Got any questions, or interested in joining The Rifles? Contact us via our enquiry form

Our Four Regular Battalions

1 RIFLES: Light Infantry

1 RIFLES is a Regular Light Infantry role battalion of around 500 Riflemen (Rfn), based in Dhekelia, Cyprus. It is currently the Regional Standby Battalion (RSB) which provides Defence with an acclimatised infantry unit able to undertake a wide range of short-notice, niche operations within the region. Our home in Alexander Barracks is situated on the beach about 20 minutes west of Ayia Napa, and has great facilities including a swimming pool and ranges. We also have our very own watersports centre, where Rfn can learn a wide-range of activities such as wake-boarding, wind-surfing and paddleboarding (as well as how to look after our own turtle colony).

Our Lead Companies are at readiness with 16 Air Assault Brigade Combat Team and train extensively alongside the Commando Force ready to extract British Nationals from conflict zones. Since 2007, 1 RIFLES has deployed on five tours to Iraq and Afghanistan, together with numerous other operations, particularly in the Middle East, North and West Africa and Eastern Europe. In the last two years alone we have had Riflemen deployed to The Gambia, Kenya, the Falkland Islands, Nigeria, Canada, the Caribbean, Estonia and the USA. The battalion was also significantly committed to the national COVID effort, helped deliver the Commonwealth Games and most recently deployed on Op TOSCA as part of the UN in Cyprus.

We have a busy training cycle ahead, with companies going to Spain, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Georgia in the next year, and numerous Training Teams deployed within the region. The Bn will remain in Cyprus until summer 2025 before returning to Chepstow and converting to the Light Mechanised Infantry role within 7 LMBCT as part of the Future Soldier Programme. Our home in Chepstow will be developed to support our new role ahead of a move just up the road to a brand-new barracks in Caerwent in 2032. The location means we have very good transport connections to the whole of the UK, and we have excellent training facilities located close by, with Brecon, Caerwent and the Salisbury Plain training areas all within a one hour’s drive.

In addition to our proud operational record, the battalion has very strong rugby and cycling teams, competing at the highest level of Army sport in these disciplines. We also have a strong heritage in Nordic skiing and operational shooting, and a growing team of watersports enthusiasts!

2 RIFLES - Light Infantry

2 RIFLES is a Light Infantry Battalion based in Northern Ireland, which prides itself on a rich and diverse record of deployments overseas on operations and training tasks. This has made it a strong and resilient family unit that is ready for anything. Following recent deployments to Kenya and Estonia in 2022, in 2023 alone we have had Riflemen deploy to Spain, Southeast Asia, East Africa, the Middle East, The Falkland Islands whilst also supporting the Army’s main effort of training Ukrainian soldiers in the UK. The future looks just as interesting and exciting. As a Light Infantry Battalion, we specialise in operating on foot in ‘complex terrain’ where vehicles cannot go, like inner cities, jungles, artic, and bushland terrains.

In addition to our military duties, 2 RIFLES is home to the Regimental Boxing Team and competes in Skiing (Nordic & Alpine), Rugby, Football, and Mountain Biking across the Army. We are always looking for new recruits to join our teams and support our ever-growing successes.

Being based in Northern Ireland, Riflemen receive extra pay (approximately £3300 a year) while in barracks, along with extra leave compared to units based on the UK mainland. We understand the importance of family, and for Riflemen who are married or in a long-term relationship, there is the opportunity to live in high-quality, heavily subsidised service families accommodation. Riflemen with homes in England are provided with 12 travel warrants annually to cover air, ferry, and rail costs.

Our location offers easy access to the city of Belfast, the stunning landscapes of 'Game of Thrones' country, outstanding beaches, and great transport links to the rest of the UK and Europe.

3 RIFLES - Mechanised Infantry

3 RIFLES is a Security Force Assistance Battalion of around 301 Riflemen, based in Dreghorn Barracks, Edinburgh, and operates within 1st (UK) Division. Since 2007, 3 RIFLES has deployed on five tours to Iraq and Afghanistan, together with numerous other operations and training missions worldwide, particularly in the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

3 RIFLES is one of four newly created Security Force Assistance Battalions within the British Army.  The Battalion is focused on training, advising, assisting, accompanying and enabling international partner forces in the Middle East and North Africa.  The exciting new role sees small teams of Riflemen deploying on training exercises and operations all over the world. 

Edinburgh is an extremely popular and lively tourist destination with very good transport connections to the whole of the UK. In particular, Riflemen from Scotland, North-East England and Yorkshire find it easy to get home most weekends.

4 RANGER - Land Special Operations Unit

The Ranger Regiment was established as part of Future Soldier on 1 December 2021 and forms part of the Army Special Operations Brigade, an important contribution of the Army’s new global posture.

The Ranger Regiment consists of four Special Operations Capable battalions. These battalions are drawn from volunteers from across the Army, who are selected and trained to develop individual and collective robustness, maturity, emotional intelligence. Volunteers must pass the two-week ‘Ranger Assessment Cadre’ followed by a ten-week ‘All Arms Ranger Course’ before being considered for service in one of the Ranger Regiments.

Individuals are expected to operate in small teams and often at reach globally. Teams must be trusted to get the correct balance when working to their commander and the requirements of their partners.

4 RIFLES transitioned to 4 RANGER on 1 December 2021 and remain based in Aldershot, Hampshire.

5 RIFLES - Armoured Infantry

5 RIFLES is based in Bulford, Wiltshire as an Armoured Infantry battalion, equipped with the Warrior Armoured Fighting Vehicle. As one of the most potent war-fighting infantry battalions, it is a part of the 20th Armoured Brigade Combat Team within 3rd (UK) Division. The Future Soldier Programme sees 5 RIFLES convert to a Heavy Mechanised Infantry battalion equipped with the new BOXER vehicle and remain in Bulford as one of just four newly equipped battalions. 

Having been the last unit in Afghanistan in 2014, it was the first to be deployed in NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence in Estonia (Operation CABRIT). The Battalion has previously served in Iraq, and has a reputation for being the first in and last out on operations.

As the largest of The Rifles Regular Battalions, 5 RIFLES has recently conducted overseas training exercises in the USA, Germany, Canada, Finland, France, Kenya and Belize.

5 RIFLES is the Regiment’s lead unit for Nordic skiing and operational shooting. It competes in a host of sports including rugby, boxing, cricket, road cycling, power lifting and football. Adventurous Training is also popular, and during the first deployment in Estonia, the Battalion sailed a yacht out to the Baltic from the UK, before returning at the end of Operation Cabrit 1.

Our Locations

  • 1 RIFLES

    Alexander Barracks, Dhekelia Station, BFPO 58

  • 2 RIFLES

    Thiepval Barracks, LISBURN, Northern Ireland, BFPO 801

  • 3 RIFLES

    Dreghorn Barracks, EDINBURGH, Midlothian, EH13 9QW

  • 5 RIFLES

    Ward Barracks,SALISBURY, Wiltshire, SP4 9NA

  • 4 RANGER

    New Normandy Barracks, Aldershot, Hampshire, GU11 2LZ

Our Equipment

WARRIOR

Used in the reconnaissance role to find and mark targets to destroy. Equipped with their own anti-armour weapons, they can also pack a punch.

Combat vehicles

Foxhound

112 kph Foxhound has a top speed of 112 kph but can still protect against improvised explosive devices thanks to its v-shaped hull.

Protected patrol vehicles

Husky

Support Husky is a protected support vehicle, providing a highly mobile and flexible load carrying vehicle.

Protected patrol vehicles

Mastiff

90 kph Mastiff is a heavily armoured, 6 x six-wheel-drive patrol vehicle with a top speed of 90 kph.

Protected patrol vehicles

RWMIK Land Rover

800km The RWMIK has the capacity to support itself and its crew over 800km.

Protected patrol vehicles

SA80 Individual Weapon

Tests On its introduction, it proved so accurate that the Army marksmanship tests had to be redesigned.

Small arms and support weapons

L115A3 Long Range 'Sniper' Rifle

600 metres They are designed to achieve a first-round hit at 600 metres and harassing fire out to 1,100 metres.

Small arms and support weapons

L129A1 Sharpshooter Rifle

7.62mm The rifle fires a 7.62mm round and has enhanced accuracy of engagement during longer-range firefights.

Small arms and support weapons

81mm Mortar

5650 metres High explosive, smoke and illuminating rounds to a maximum range of 5650m.

Small arms and support weapons

Combat Shotgun

12 gauge The Combat Shotgun is a semi-automatic, tubular magazine-fed weapon chambered for the 12 gauge cartridge.

Small arms and support weapons

General Purpose Machine Gun

GPMG The general purpose machine gun (GPMG) can be used as a light weapon and in a sustained fire role.

Small arms and support weapons

Grenade Machine Gun

Mounted The GMG is usually mounted on WMIK Land Rovers but can also be used from ground-based tripods.

Small arms and support weapons

Quad Bike

Speed The ATV's alone can reach speeds of up to 75kph

Logistic vehicles

Heavy Machine Gun

12.7mm The powerful L1A1 12.7mm (.50) Heavy Machine Gun (HMG) is an updated version of the Browning M2 Fifty-cal.

Small arms and support weapons

Light Machine Gun

300 metres It provides the section commander with the capability to impose sustained suppressive fire on to an objective out to 300m.

Small arms and support weapons

SA80 Individual Weapon

Our Benefits

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Pay

The pay you'll receive each month is just one element of the package.

Earn £18,687 during training. When you have completed 26 week’s service or finished basic trade training – whichever comes first, your pay will rise to £23,496.

You will also receive access to a free gym and a non-contributory pension. We offer unique early promotion opportunities that allow you to move up the pay scale swiftly after completing training. This means you can promote to the rank of Lance Corporal earlier than in any other infantry regiment. 

The professional courses we offer allow you to develop your skills and increase your potential. Completing these courses means you can take on more responsibility and potentially earn more money.   

#WeReleasePotential

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Qualifications and Training

As a Rifleman you will work alongside some of the finest infantry soldiers in the world; our battle worthiness, marksmanship and field craft are second to none. We also want you to be skilled in other areas, which is why we encourage our soldiers to continue their education through vocational and practical courses:

  • All driving licences
  • ILM Team Leading Award
  • Public Services Apprenticeships in Security,
  • Communications, Engineering, Carry and Deliver Goods, and Storage and Warehousing
  • BTEC Level 2 Certificate in Relief Operations Skills
  • NVQ Level 2 Public Service

#WeAreSkilled

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HEALTHCARE

During service you'll receive free dental care and free prescriptions as well as support from the British Army's physiotherapy and rehabilitation teams if required.

ACCOMMODATION

The Army will provide you with housing if required. The Future Accommodation Model is currently reviewing the service housing offering, making sure that it's fit for 21st century families.

Joining as a Regular

Find out more about the Soldier Recruitment Process

Interested in becoming a RIFLES Officer? Find out more about the Officer Recruitment Steps

Looking to join The Rifles? For more information, fill out an Enquiry Form

  1. Submit online application

    Once you've registered your interest to join, you will be asked for details including your nationality and age. This will tell you what type of role you can apply for (or if you can't join). You'll then need to apply online, which will get you started on your Army journey.

  2. Career Centre Visit

    Now that you've applied, you'll be given a local Recruiter and a Candidate Support Manager (CSM), who may ask you extra questions. You can also follow your progress online. Normally, you'll be invited to your local career centre, where you'll be given a personal development plan to follow to help you get ready for the Assessment Centre. You'll also learn more about the Army - and have the chance to ask questions. 

  3. Assessment Centre

    Your assessment will last for 2 days and will take place in one of our Assessment Centres in the UK. We will pay for your travel to get there and back.

    This is your chance to see whether the Army is right for you, and for us to see whether you're suitable to join.

  4. After Assessment Centre

    Once you’re through assessment there’s just some final paperwork to do before you’re ready to begin your Initial training (Phase 1)

  5. Attend Basic and Infantry Training

    You start with a Combat Infantry Course (28 weeks) at The Infantry Training Centre Catterick (ITC(C)). Here, you do your basic training and your Infantry training. 

    If you’re aged under 17 years and 5 months, you’ll do your basic training at the Army Foundation College Harrogate for 49 weeks. You’ll then go to ITC(C) to complete your Infantry training over 10 weeks.

    During your Infantry Training you will go through the regimental allocation process where you will be assigned to your future regiment. 

Infantry Training Centre Catterick

Band and Bugles Inspection

THE BRITISH ARMY'S LARGEST INFANTRY REGIMENT

Follow us to find out more and stay up to date on RIFLES activity.

The Rifles is recruiting quality people just like you right now as part of the Infantry. For more information on joining the Infantry and The Rifles submit an expression of interest through our Enquiry Form.

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