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Slow March - Now what was that all about?

KnockKnock

Old-Salt
On National Service during ABTU we had to learn to march slowly - now what was that all about?

Then, having been posted to Malaya, there would be the rare occasion when a sergeant would turn up fresh from UK and decide we needed to be smartened up - Why?
Orders would follow, resulting in having an early morning march, and then the command might be ‘slow march’, to which in the rising temperature we would make this ‘slow saunter’. Eventually, the sergeant would give up, his neatly pressed and just back from dhobi OG jacket covered in damp patches, and never bother us again.
 
On National Service during ABTU we had to learn to march slowly - now what was that all about?

Then, having been posted to Malaya, there would be the rare occasion when a sergeant would turn up fresh from UK and decide we needed to be smartened up - Why?
Orders would follow, resulting in having an early morning march, and then the command might be ‘slow march’, to which in the rising temperature we would make this ‘slow saunter’. Eventually, the sergeant would give up, his neatly pressed and just back from dhobi OG jacket covered in damp patches, and never bother us again.
Obvious answer is that it is a ceremonial pace, used when a unit's colours are marched out in front of the troops. It's also used for funeral marches.
The more likely answer is shown above.
 
Two others come to mind. The change arms and change step.
Change arms was handy on a long march with a shouldered "that rifle" but change step? I never saw the use really.
 
Two others come to mind. The change arms and change step.
Change arms was handy on a long march with a shouldered "that rifle" but change step? I never saw the use really.
Presumably for when one body of marching troops met and joined another body of marching troops...

A little bit like ’Salute to the Front’. For an individual, certainly but it seems a pointless drill movement for a formed body?
 
Two others come to mind. The change arms and change step.
Change arms was handy on a long march with a shouldered "that rifle" but change step? I never saw the use really.

For pokey drill. It always used make me snigger watching the Provo give 3 or 4 “change step”s to the SUS, who invariably anticipated another one, and changed step when they weren’t supposed to and about fell over when the Provo gave another one one step later. Every time :)

Moral of the story - don’t get caught :)
 
wo others come to mind. The change arms and change step.
Change arms was handy on a long march with a shouldered "that rifle" but change step? I never saw the use really.

Not a drill move, but on some old suspension footbridges there can still be seen a sign 'TROOPS BREAK STEP'. This was to prevent a sympathetic wave building up, ultimately causing the bridge to collapse.

I think that the Millennium Bridge over the Thames suffered such problems without any troops being within miles of it - until some very expensive modifications were made.
 
Not a drill move, but on some old suspension footbridges there can still be seen a sign 'TROOPS BREAK STEP'. This was to prevent a a sympathetic wave building up, ultimately causing the bridge to collapse.

I think that the Millennium Bridge over the Thames suffered such problems without any troops being within miles of it - until some very expensive modifications were made.

Chelsea Bridge had such signs on it when Chelsea Barracks was still in existence.
 
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Two others come to mind. The change arms and change step.
Change arms was handy on a long march with a shouldered "that rifle" but change step? I never saw the use really.

The "change step" was a practice for the mong who kept losing step and had to get in step with the others in a "smart, soldierlike and uniform" manner.
Saluting to the front was simply a way of letting a group practice the movement without wasting time on doing one individual at a time.

Loved it when we had a group of ex-WRAC join in (they used to get in a different, all female gaggle before they joined their respective cap badge) and get the "Get on Parade" order. Lines would be all over the place with the different stride and tight skirts. Made the right dress take longer than getting on parade did.
 
Try marching in quick time to My Home or the Highland Cradle Song, it just doesn’t work out......
 
Morning @Stanchion,
Are the guys in the boat holding the bridge up, on their heads?
Gen'., question. What's the back-story? I can see 'Coldstream Guards'(not depot, peaks slashed etc), but left glasses in gaff.
It was the newly constructed footbridge over the lake in St James's Park. In addition to putting maximum weight on the bridge, I would think that the test include marching a load of times without breaking step in order to build up resonance (if that's the right word) It's likely they would have come from Wellington Barracks, just across the road from the park.
 

KnockKnock

Old-Salt
Any more National Service memories of marching?.....Like those sprogs who would practice marching with arm going forward same as the leg, in an attempt to get out early, unable to march correctly?
 
Any more National Service memories of marching?.....Like those sprogs who would practice marching with arm going forward same as the leg, in an attempt to get out early, unable to march correctly?
I was too young for NS but I do recall the squad having to march through a narrow entrance to the parade ground which necessitated the three ranks of the column closing together which meant the left file only swung the left arm, the right file only the right arm and the middle rank holding both arms at the side.
I can't recall the word of command but I've seem to recall it made reference to 'inside arms' which sounds a bit odd to me when I look back
 

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