Wellon Army: 2300 AD
Corps of Infantry
By D Hebditch
The Wellon Army's infantry regiments are something of a mixture, having a variety of ages and histories. Some being descended from early defence forces, some from British Army units and others having been recently created. However the 2285 Defence Review brought all of these forces into some sort of uniformity. As part of the 'New Cardwell' system most regiments were to be formed of two PF battalions, two VF battalions and a 'HS' battalion of reservists, local service PFs and high readiness VFs.
For this to happen some units had to expand and some had to contract. In many cases small regiments had to absorb militia units with which they had little in common, giving rise to some less than easy amalgamations. However the reforms meant that each regiment would generally have one PF battalion serving with III Corps or in the Reserve, and one serving locally with a Mechanised Brigade. The remaining three battalions would then form the local defence brigade, which would defend each region. However the most recent reorganisation in light of the Kafer War's operational demands has altered this balance somewhat.
Wellon Army infantry training is the template for all military training. Basic, or Phase One, training is done in one of 30 local depots and is common for all recruits into the Wellon Defence Forces. At the end of this six week shakedown the recruits are then sent out for advanced training. Phase Two training for the infantry is a six month course at a regional centre. Following this the recruit the returns to his regiment most of which give further customised training before sending the recruit to the service battalion.
The infantry were initially subdivided into regional groups following the original settlements. However after the reforms the South Albion Region was split, Regions renamed as Divisions and a new division created for more specialised units.
Although most units style their lowest grade of enlisted soldier as Privates, many regiments use a different nomenclature and the basic rank is shown in brackets.
The Governor-General's Division is one half of the old South Albion Region and generally includes units recruited from the areas of East New Albion which is dominated by the Cam Valley. The Division conducts its training at the Governor-General's Infantry Training Centre located in New Shorncliffe. It includes many of the most socially prestigious units in the Wellonese forces.
The Wellon Guards
The Wellon Guards Regiment is the senior regiment of the Wellon Army but it is also one of the youngest, being formed only in 2277 when Wellon became a Commonwealth. It is modelled on the British Foot Guards and styles itself the 6th Foot Guards with appropriate dress uniform . The Wellon Guards have one battalion of armoured infantry and one of light infantry and a ceremonial detachment (No.7 Company) which guards the Governor Generals residence, whilst whole battalions of the Guards were often seen on ceremonial occasions (although both battalions are now both off-world).
The regiment is a fully PF formation, and is excellently trained with a high level of discipline. They recruit from across Wellon. The 2nd Wellon Guards have been deployed to Beta Canum for the last six months where they have seen action in mopping up Kafer remnants. The 1st Battalion on Earth is a part of a newly reorganised Guards Light Brigade which has been trained in the light role, but has also received the honour of guarding the Royal Family on several occasions. (Guardsman)
The New Camelot Light Infantry (NCLI)
The NCLI is the oldest regiment in the Wellon Army. Formed in 2168 as a militia Territorial Defence Unit to protect the landing site at New Camelot (memories of the Alpha Centauri War still being fresh) and trained by the 4th Bn, The Light Infantry of the British Army garrison. The NCLI has become a rather grand, well connected regiment with several of its officers being Members of Parliament. Most of its traditional ceremonial duties have been taken over by the Wellon Guards to the disgust of the regiment who still regard themselves as the senior Wellon regiment. The NCLI Regimental Mess in New Camelot's Cook's Town is a major architectural feature and also houses the Regimental Museum.
The NCLI is a very strong regiment with high recruitment levels, especially from New Camelot's less wealthy suburbs. Its HS and VF battalions are always above strength, and competition for officers places is intense. (Private)
The Dales and Valley Regiment (DVR)
The DVR was formed in 2241 from a number of Territorial units in the remote southern Pendragons region around the headwaters of the Cam. The regiment's character is very much formed from the Welsh and Yorkshire descended populations of that region. However increasingly its soldiers are drawn from the urban populations of Quinnell. The DVR has a reputation as being one of the toughest regiments of the Army, formed partly because of their robust attitudes when serving in the Southern Archipelago.
Royal Doorn Regiment (RDR)
The Royal Doorn Regiment is also known as the Koninklijke Doorn Regiment, and is the only unit of the RWA to be drawn primarily from the Dutch settlers to the colony. It also is unique as its royal title was granted by the Netherlands. Created in 2241 from a number of Territorial units, the regiment is recruited from the Doorn region of the Cam Valley. The prestigious local militia unit, the 27th Jägers became a part of the regiment in 2285. The unit is officially bilingual but in reality only uses Dutch when giving drill commands on parade, some rank titles are also Dutch.
The RDR has made a point of cultivating links between itself and the Dutch Army back on Earth. Exchange postings between the two are common. Recently a similar scheme has been established at a more discrete level with the new Flemish Army. (Private)
The Loyal Regiment of Wellon (LOYAL)
The Loyal Regiment was formed in 2241 and took its name to declare its loyalty to the Crown, when at the time Riverside was a hot bed of republican activity. The Loyal Regiment still recruits from the city of Riverside. As this area is known as the 'Home of the Wellon Army' and is home to many military families the regiment is always very well recruited. However the regiment's linked with the poorer districts of Riverside (what should be a prime recruiting ground) are weak and the unit is seen in a poor light by local republicans and Tiranistas. (Private)
The Royal Wellon Regiment (RWR)
The RWR is a recently formed regiment created in 2285 with that years Defence Review decision to create Wellons first armoured brigades. It recruits mainly from the New Camelot and Riverside areas. It is characterised by its lack of VF battalions, and makes much of its professional nature in recruiting campaigns. The RWR is currently lobbying hard for new battalions to be created from its ranks should the Wellon Army again expand. (Private)
Princess Margarets Wellon Light Infantry (PMWLI)
The PMWLI are another young regiment in the formed in 2285. Renamed in 2298 after the last Governor General, now Queen, they are something of a fashionable regiment and have a high proportion of female soldiers. They have two battalions of armoured infantry, and are recruited from the Grafton-Hamilton area north of New Camelot. The VF units of the regiment have a much older pedigree however, dating from militia units formed by Canadian colonists at the turn of the century. The PMWLI combine light infantry with Canadian Highland traditions and so its band have both bugles and pipes and drums. (Private)
The North Albion Division is simply the infantry of the old North Albion Defence Force. North Albion retains a very strong regional character which is reflected in the attitudes of the units within the North Albion Division. Inter-regimental rivalry is fierce within the division, however they regard regiments from other divisions with both indifference and derision. The old pre-2241 attitude of 'you're North Albion, or you're now't' is alive and well in the division. Training is conducted in the North Albion Infantry Training Centre at Narvik.
The New Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers (NRWF)
The NRWF was formed in 2187 from various Territorial units in the New Birmingham and Warwick Peninsular area. As such the unit has inherited several organisational quirks from the amalgamation process, including the naming of recce platoons as Lancer Platoons. The NRWF retains very close links with the city from which it is drawn. It is renowned for wearing turbans as part of its dress uniform and being partially mounted whilst on parade. The 2nd Battalion has just finished training for the arctic warfare role it has recently taken on. (Fusilier)
The RVR are another old unit created in 2171 to defend the Victoria settlement, and linked to the Royal Green Jackets. They remain a regiment drawn from the more middle class areas of the city, and regard themselves as the cream of the old North Albion Defence Force. In their early years the RVR saw substantial service against bandits in the Pendragon Mountains. In 2277 they absorbed several of the local militia forces in the area. This amalgamation did not go entirely smoothly as the militia's had as long a history as the RVR and resented the process. 1 RVR is currently stationed on Beowulf in the Queen Alice's Star system as part of the WEF. (Rifleman)
The LCR is named after the Cape Lion, a striking geographical feature that dominates the city of New Capetown. Formed in 2180 as a Territorial unit, the unit still recruits from the region. It is dominated by the descendants of the Southern Africans who colonised New Capetown, and so has its own particular military culture somewhat different from the other regiments. The 2nd Battalion serving with the British Light Division has passed into military legend as the Lions of New Africa for their exploits in fighting the Kafers and has recently returned to Wellon. The regiment has experienced a huge surge in both its military and public profiles. The 1st Battalion has just been re-roled to take on the divisional close recce battalion task. (Private)
The North Albion Greenjackets (NAGJ)
The NAGJ were formed in 2245 to recruit from the rural region of the North Albion Plain north of the Pendragon's. Originally a small unit with a recce specialisation the unit has become more of a conventional infantry unit. It was enlarged in 2285 with the addition of two old militia units that became the 4th and 5th Bns, whilst the 2nd and 3rd Bns were raised from scratch. It was a move despised and much lamented by many of the rank and file who enjoyed their elite status. The NAGJ still provides the starting point for many of Wellons best officers. (Rifleman)
The Kings Own Royal Wellon Regiment (KORWR)
The KORWR were formed in 2278 to cover the coastal areas between New Capetown and Victoria where many new communities had grown up. The regiment's PF soldiers are often farmer's sons and daughters from the New Anglia region. As such the KORWR often bears the burden of unkind jokes within the army for the alleged stupidity of its soldiers. The strength of the unit is dependent on the state of the agricultural economy in the region. (Private)
The Royal Western Regiment of Wellon (RWestR)
The RWestR is another unit created in 2285 and is the largest regiment in the Army. It currently has four PF battalions and recruits from Victoria, New Birmingham, New Capetown, Mont Royal and the smaller communities of the New Albion Plain. Originally training cadres were provided by other regiments from the region, and the unit is only just beginning to gain its own distinctive culture. Consequently the regiment is quite poorly recruited. (Private)
The Mont Royal Chasseurs (MRC)
The MRC were formed in 2285 to fill a gap in the orbat of the Wellon Army. The city of Mont Royal had previously been covered by the RVR and RNWF and its own Territorial units. But the citys French majority had lacked representation in the PF Wellon Army. The MRC finally put this right, with the proud militia units becoming the new regiments VF bns. The MRC are unique in the Wellon Army in wearing their berets to the left in the French style. (Chasseur)
The New Scotland Division is based around the infantry compliment of the old New Scotland Defence Force with the addition of a regiment raised in the Wellon Arctic Territories. The New Scotland Infantry Training Centre is located close to Dartmoor.
The Royal New Scots (RNS)
The RNS are another of the old regiments in the Army, being formed as one of the early Territorial Defence Units formed in 2170, and linked to the Royal Scots. The RNS are the senior New Scottish regiment and are the most socially prestigious infantry unit in that part of the country. The RNS was re-organised in 2286 in line with the 'New Cardwell' reforms. As soldiers the RNS pride themselves on their aggression and professional skills. However they are still smarting from a recent scandal from when the 2nd Battalion was stationed in Point Sterling. Several soldiers worked as bouncers in clubs in the harbour district, becoming members of the local Triad society. A murder committed by one of the soldiers resulted in the links with organised crime being discovered and investigated by the Wellon Defence Police's SIB.
The regiment recruits from both New Glasgow and the Dartmoor region. A company of the 1st Battalion has been included in the 7th Battle Group which is soon to deploy to Crater with the WEF. The company has been hand picked with the best soldiers and officers from throughout the regiment. (Private)
The Royal Highland Regiment of Wellon (Wellon Black Watch)(RHW)
The RHW dates from the first settlements of the island in 2205 when the unit was formed for Territorial defence as the New Highland Regiment and was renamed in 2141. The unit recruits from that islands Gealic speaking Scots and its Scandinavians. However it also has many recruits from the city of Dartmoor from New Highlanders working in the city. The RHW has a reputation for toughness and insularity and is often used as an enemy force during large scale exercises, the locally based battalions are excellently trained for arctic warfare.
The regiment's 1st Battalion is currently serving on Alicia as a light battalion attached to the Theatre Commander's Reserve. As such it would be one of the first units committed should Kafers again attack the Eta Bootis finger. (Private)
The New Scottish Rifles (NSR)
The NSR are the second oldest of the New Scottish regiments. Formed in 2205 from middle-class VFs and students in New Glasgow, over the years the NSR has also become the traditional regiment of New Scotlands Scandinavian population. The battalions are mostly recruited mostly from New Glasgow, but the 4th Battalion is recruited from the prosperous city of Cameron. The 5th Battalion is a Scandinavian, predominantly Danish, ethnic militia unit brought into the regiment in 2285. (Rifleman)
The Royal New Glasgow Highlanders (RNGH)
The RNGH were formed in 2241 when it became obvious that New Glasgow's burgeoning population could support another regiment . The regiment recruits heavily from the industrial working class areas of New Glasgow. The RNGH absorbed the genteel Argyllshire Fencibles in 2285 which came as something of a culture shock to both units. The regiment is usually well recruited, often absorbing the excess work force from the ship yards in times of recession. The unit is known in the Wellon Army as the 'Red Highlanders' because of its reputation for militancy, one officer famously complained of one of his NCO's that 'he's not my platoon sergeant, he's a shop steward'. In spite, or perhaps because, of this reputation the regiment is well regarded for its efficiency in the field. (Private)
The RAR are an unusual formation, based in the Wellon Arctic Territory and the city of Knightsbridge, and provide for the defence of that area, formerly a Marine task. Formed in 2278 the unit includes many of Canadian and Greenland Inuit origin. The RAR is renowned for its abilities in reconnaissance and raiding in its environment, and should any conflict occur in this area they will be of undoubted value. The 2nd Battalion is mainly recruited from Knightsbridge but also has a number of independent companies across the islands of the WAT. This regiment is something of the 'odd man out' within the division. They are unual also as their royal status comes form the Norwegian rather than British royal family. (Rifleman)
The Wellon Highland Regiment (WHR)
The WHR is the junior New Scottish regiment. Formed in 2285 it recruits from across New Scotlands rural areas. It is looked down upon by most of the older New Scottish regiments whose nickname for the WHR is the 'Bairns' (kids). As such the WHR tries desperately hard to distinguish itself against the other New Scots units. In recent years imaginative and unconventional officers and NCO's stymied in the other regiments have transferred across to the WHR and have given it something of a unique forward looking culture. (Private)
The Viscount Khan Division is the other half of the old South Albion Region and is responsible for the administration of the infantry regiments of South New Albion. The Viscount Khan Infantry Training Centre is located at the neck of the Sterling Peninsular although the training regime involves many jungle warfare drills. Viscount Khan was the first commander of the South Albion Defence Force and was heavily involved in the early campaigns in the Southern Archipelago.
The Wellon Rangers (WR)
The WR trace their roots back to 2171 as the Livingstone Rangers when they were formed to protect the scientific and fishing community in the Livingstone Peninsular. Rangers also saw frequent tours in the southern archipelago. The unit has been expanded through the years and renamed in 2277. It still recruits in the Livingstone Peninsular and nearby islands. Consequently its recruiting profile matches that of the local communities and contains a substantial number of soldiers of West African and Indian descent. (Ranger)
The Chindits (CHINDIT)
The Chindits have their roots in the New Cleckheaton Chindits who were formed in 2195 to protect that jungle settlement. The NCC gained a degree of international and interstellar fame in the early years of the 23rd Century participating the Royal Geographical Societys exploration of the New Albion Rain Forest. As more and more settlements grew up in the to study or exploit the area the Chindits spread with them.
The Chindits have also seen much service in the southern archipelago in 'Piracy suppression' missions. Mainly recruited from towns in the Rain Forest the Chindits have gained a reputation for the excellence of their jungle warfare skills. The British Army has recently up a school in the region to exploit this expertise. In addition the regiment has raised a special unit providing trackers for Commonwealth forces operating in New Africa's jungles. (Private)
The Point Sterling Grenadiers (PSG)
The PSG was formed from a number of Territorial units in 2241, to protect the major port city of Point Sterling. It recruits exclusively from Point Sterling, and consequently has a largely Cantonese contingent. The name is an irreverent reminder of Point Sterling's origins and the riotous tendencies of its initial inhabitants and their liking of bombarding the police with petrol bombs. The PSG saw much action in the last major piracy suppression campaign in the 2260's earning itself a reputation for tough action that made it much hated by locals in the Southern Archipelago. The PSG uses a form of gutter Cantonese in its everyday work. (Private)
The Royal Southern Regiment of Wellon (RSouthR)
The RSouthR is another of the Wellon Army's newer regiments created in 2285. The regiment recruits from across the south. Its original cadre of officers and NCO's were provided by the PSG, WR and CHINDITS, and has only just begun to provide the bulk of its own officers. 1 RSouthR is currently serving in the WEF where it has carved out a fine reputation. Some officers however are worrying about the spread of 'Gun Boy' culture through its ranks and the use of ritual scarring as an initiation. (Private)
The Coast and Islands Regiment (CIR)
The CIR was formed in 2285 to cover a gap in the Wellon Army's coverage in the southern region. The once 'illegal' settlements had grown up into thriving communities whose populations had no desire to join units like the Point Sterling Grenadiers or Wellon Rangers that had often operated against these settlements. Some piracy and lawlessness was still going on in the region, so on the principle of 'set a thief to catch a thief' (as the Chief of the Defence Staff rather tactlessly put it) another unit was created in those areas.
The regiment has five battalions widely dispersed through the southern archipelago, uniquely both its PF battalions operate in this area. It is become common for the CIR's PF battalions to wear a 'Skull and Crossbones' shoulder patch, as a tongue in cheek reminder of their origins. This uniform quirk initial caused great consternation amongst merchant shipping being inspected by this unit as part of their duties. (Private)
The Lord Heller's Division was created as a part of the New Cardwell Reforms to control the basic training of a number of specialist units. Previously these units had conducted their own training and it was felt that their was room for a consolidation of high end training. Consequently the Lord Heller Infantry Training Centre is based in the foothills of the Pendragons and specialises in fearsome basic infantry training. However all of the units conduct extensive Phase Three training for all of their recruits including Para Battle Cadres and Commando Courses to name but a few. The Wellon SAS is attached to the division for administrative purposes only, a hold-over from the days of the 1st Commando Battalion.
The Heller family, which came to military prominence in WW3, has had a major influence on the development of the Wellonese military with many of its scions reaching high command positions. Field Marshall Lord Heller was the first commander of the unified Wellon Defence Force.
The Royal Wellon Marines (RWM)
The Corps of Royal Wellon Marines is directly descended from its British counterpart. It has its roots in locally recruited units formed for duty on the RN's warships. These eventually expanded into a brigade sized formation, which remained an integral part of the RM until 2277 when the Corps of Royal Wellon Marines was formed. The RWM continues to provide the combat units for 7 Cdo Bde, a formation which is supported in time of war by elements of the RWM Reserve, detachments of which can be found in coastal cities around Wellon. (Marine)
The Royal Wellon Airmobile Regiment (RWAR)
The RWAR is the Wellonese child of the Parachute Regiment. Its roots lie in the three parachute battalions raised in each of the original settlement areas as rapid response forces. Training for these units was provided by the 6th Airborne Brigade then based on Tirane. When the Dominion of Wellon was formed these three bns were absorbed into the Parachute Regiment proper with their current numbers and became an integral part of the British Army.
With the granting of Commonwealth status, HMWG wanted the service of these units. Many soldiers chose to transfer to the British Army proper and those remaining with their units returned home. A new regiment was formed including all three of the bns which continue to have close links with the British Paras. The units are commonly referred to as 101 Para etc, with only Defence Ministry publications doing otherwise. The 104th Bn is stationed and recruited from the Masira area and is the direct descendent of an old Omani Army unit and has slightly different traditions from the rest of the RWAR. (Private)
The MR is recruited from the Pendragon Mountains of New Albion, and is a crack mountain infantry unit whose 2nd Battalion also fulfils mountain rescue duties in this developing region. The MR also runs the renowned Mountain Warfare School in the Pendragon's, which runs several fearsome and exceptionally taxing courses. A high proportion of the recruits come from those Nepalese and Gurkha families that have settled in that area. The MR was formed in 2225. They have adopted the Gurkha bush-hat as their non-operational head wear, and the Kukhri is always worn. (Private)
Created in 2285 and recruited from communities in and around the Blight. The DRF is unique in being mostly raised from the Islamic community, although there are many 'Anglos' from the north of the Blight. The DRF's A Squadron is the direct descendent of the Oman Army's Sultan's Own Special Force, and wears that units insignia (cap badge having the SAS winged dagger with 'who dares wins' in Arabic etc.). A detachment from that squadron acts unofficially as the Sultan of Masira's bodyguard. The other three squadrons of the DRF wear a Scorpion cap badge based on that worn by the British Long Range Desert Group of WW2. Needless to say the DRF are an exceptional desert warfare force.
1st Regiment - PF - recce - Strategic Reserve
25 (Wellon) Special Air Service Regiment
Special forces in the Wellon Army have had a relatively long gestation period. Although the Army has many specialist forces it lacked a dedicated strategic special operations unit. However for some time during the Commonwealth period two units were vying to become the basis for a special forces unit. These were the North Albion Green Jackets and the 1st Commando battalion, who specialised in strategic recce and raids and had a great deal of overlap. The NAGJ was seen to have the advantage over the Commandos as they were a permanent regiment whereas the Commandos were all seconded personnel.
With the Defence Review of 2285 the Defence Staff took a step that pleased no-one. The NAGJ became a PF infantry formation and the Commando battalion was disbanded. Instead a new SAS regiment was formed as part of the Wellon Army. It took some 10 years before the unit reached full strength, but frequent cross posting have meant 25 SAS already has an impressive bank of skills and experience. 25 SAS co-operates widely with other special forces on Wellon and PFly exchanges individuals with 22 and 24 SAS.
Wellon Defence Forces 2300 AD