HC Deb 29 July 1881 vol 264 c121

asked the Secretary of State for War, Whether he has yet consulted the Military Authorities about the continued use of "Regimental Colours," as promised by him on the 12th August last; and, if he can give to the House his opinion on the subject?


Sir, in reply to my hon. and gallant Friend, I have to say that, in fulfilment of my promise given at the end of last Session, and renewed in February last, the Commander-in-Chief sent to all general officers and colonels commanding battalions in the United Kingdom a Circular inviting their opinion as to the expediency of retaining one or both of the regimental colours, and, should they be retained, as to the expediency of taking them with the regiment on active service. To this Circular 83 answers have been received, and after carefully weighing them the Duke of Cambridge has decided upon, and I have approved, a General Order, which will recite that in consequence of the altered formation of attack and the extended range of fire, regimental colours shall not in future be taken with the battalions on active service. When, however, a battalion goes abroad in the ordinary course of relief they will accompany the battalion, but be left with the depot which has to be formed on such occasions if the regiment goes on active service. Except in this respect no change will be made, both colours being retained as affording a record of the services of the regiment, and furnishing to the young soldier a history of its gallant deeds. At reviews and occasions of ceremony they will be usually taken with the battalion.


said, that in consequence of the answer of the right hon. Gentleman he would not proceed with the Resolution standing in his name with respect to this subject.