Origin and History
In January 1690, two Marine regiments were added to the Navy Establishment for service on board the fleet. In July 1698, a new establishment of the marine forces was ordered. There were four regiments in this new establishment: one was formed from the original two regiments raised in 1690, and three regiments were formed by the reassignment of three regiments of foot. In May 1699, these four regiments were all disbanded.
On February 12, 1702, during the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-13), the British Parliament enabled Queen Anne to increase the efficiency of her navy, by forming a Corps of Marines, which could act at sea as well as on land. On 1 June, six regiments, including the present regiment, were accordingly added to the regular Army as a Marine Corps. Each of these regiments comprised twelve companies of 59 men each. Colonel William Seymour was nominated to superintend the Marine forces and promoted to brigadier-general. Large part of the regiment was raised in Lincolnshire, and two companies were raised in Hull. The regiment was ranked as "1st Marines," under the command of Thomas Saunderson. In 1703, one company of the regiment was lost in the "Great Storm". On 25 December 1703, each company of marines was increased to 100 men. In July and August 1704, a detachment of the regiment formed part of the Marine Corps of 2,200 men which took part in the capture and defence of Gibraltar. In September 1705, the regiment was involved in the capture of Barcelona and in the defence of Gerona. In 1707, it took part in the unsuccessful defence of Lérida. In 1709, it reembarked on board the fleet. In 1710, a detachment of the regiment formed part of the Marine Battalion of 400 men, which took part in the capture of Port Royal in Acadia. In 1711, a detachment of the regiment formed part of the Marine Battalion of 600 men, which took part in the unsuccessful expedition against Québec.
The regiment was reduced in December 1713 and January 1714. On March 25, 1715, it was re-established on the Irish Establishment as the "Sir Charles Will’s Regiment of Foot" without loss of precedence.
From its creation to 1751, the regiment was also known by the name of its successive colonels.
On July 1 1751, when a Royal warrant reorganised the British infantry, the regiment was designated as the "30th Regiment of Foot".
During the Seven Years' War, the regiment was commanded by:
- from ??? to ??? (at least in the summer of 1758) John Campbell, earl of Loudon
Service during the War
In September 1757, the regiment was stationed on the Isle of Wight and embarked aboard the fleet and took part in the unsuccessful and wasteful raid on Rochefort.
In May 1758, the regiment was at the Isle of Wight in preparation for a raid on the French Coasts. It then embarked on the fleet and took part in the first expedition from June 1 to July 1. It also took part in a second expedition on the French Coasts from August to September of the same year. Its grenadiers suffered heavy losses during the re-embarkment at Saint-Cast.
As of May 30 1759, the regiment was stationed in England and counted 1 battalion for a total of 900 men.
In 1761, the regiment took part in the expedition against Belle-Isle. This French island was besieged and captured.
|Coat||brick red lined pale yellow and laced white (unknown pattern) with 3 buttonholes under the lapels (same lace as above)
|Waistcoat||brick red laced white (same lace as above)|
|Gaiters||white with black buttons|
brown, grey or black during campaigns (black after 1759)
Troopers were armed with with a "Brown Bess" muskets, a bayonet and a sword. They also carried a dark brown haversack with a metal canteen on the left hip.
Officers of the regiment wore the same uniforms as the private soldiers but with the following differences
- silver gorget around the neck
- an aiguilette on the right shoulder
- silver lace instead of normal lace
- a crimson sash
Officers wore the same headgear as the private soldiers under their command; however, officers of the grenadier company wore a more decorated mitre cap.
Officers generally carried a spontoon, however, in battle some carried muskets instead.
According to the Royal Clothing Warrant of 1751:
- The drummers of the regiment were clothed in pale yellow, lined, faced, and lapelled on the breast with red, and laced in such manner as the colonel shall think fit for distinction sake, the lace, however, was of the colours of that on the soldiers' coats.
- The front or forepart of the drums were painted pale yellow, with the king's cypher and crown, and the number “XXX” under it. The rims were red.
King's Colour: Union with its centre decorated with a rose and thistle wreath surrounding the rank of the regiment "XXX" in gold Roman numerals.
Regimental Colour: pale yellow field with its centre decorated with a rose and thistle on the same stalk surrounding the rank of the regiment "XXX" in gold Roman numerals. The Union in the upper left corner.
Fortescue, J. W., A History of the British Army Vol. II, MacMillan, London, 1899
Funcken, Liliane and Fred, Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle
George II, The Royal Clothing Warrant, 1751
Lawson, Cecil C. P., A History of the Uniforms of the British Army - from the Beginnings to 1760, vol. II, p. 90-103
Mills, T. F., Land Forces of Britain the Empire and Commonwealth through the Way Back Machine
Morier, David, Paintings of the British Grenadiers in 1751
Wikipedia - 30th Foot
N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.
Wienand Drenth for additional information on the lineage and history of the regiment