The only experience i have of the rifles was DS'ing 4 Rifles on exercise Desert Dragon. I can honestly say i and many of the DS (various capbadges) were of the opinion that they were rubbish. I was astonished at the level of incompetence shown by some JNCO's considering this was their confirmatory exercise prior to deployment.
I am not having a dig at the rifles because i am a Para either as no doubt some of you will think. I hold quite a few other infantry regiments other then my own in high esteem.
Nice to see the level of debate, the intellectual cut and thrust of wit and repartee is still alive and well!
The Rifles. Well, a Large regiment, formed from the finest soldiers ever to swear loyalty to the throne, sadly diluted by accepting (or rather being forced to accept) outsiders into the sacred fold, thus diluting the purity of the caste, but needs must if they are to survive and continue to show those poncy pink hatted pooftahs how a real regiment fights. I have to reluctantly admit that turnout may appear scruffy, to the untutored and ignorant eye, as does their drills, but just remember that the parent regiment from which the Rifles was formed holds 58 VCs. So, they are probably doing something right.
Not that I am biased in any way. And it was just the Rifle Brigade in my day!
Errr - I think you mean that one of the two parent regiments holds 58 (but I think it's 59, actually), while the other principal Regiment holds 43, including the first of WW2.
Let's just say that the Light tradition earned over 100 of the 1354 that have been awarded to date. So roughly one in 13 have been won by the core of the Rifles. Add in the other regiments we are delighted to welcome, and it's undoubtedly one in ten or more.
And, of course, the pink hatted mob's favourite - if not seminal - battle honour was won for them by an Ox & Bucks Light Infantry bunch who agreed to sit in gliders for the duration because they had a tradition of innovation and boldness: Pegasus Bridge was a shining example of the Rifles' very best traditions.