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 Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !

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rusteze

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PostSubject: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:47 pm

Leafing through my copies of the Graphic for the Chard picture I came across this cryptic reference to the "reported annihilation of the 2nd Battalion 24th". It is in the 6 September edition, and the report is dismissed by those officers returning. But what was this about, I  imagine it caused huge consternation, given the earlier loss of the 1st Battalion. Don't think I have heard of this before.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:53 pm

Canard "An unfounded rumour or story" ?
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Tue Jan 14, 2014 12:42 pm

(undated) letter from Curling, probably written in mid February 1879, also contains an account of the battle:

"Another thing that strikes me very much, is how little impression the sad affair seems to make on everybody.  You hear the men singing just the same as if they had not lost half their number a week ago.  The Officers too seem to be just as cheerful and take just as much trouble about their food, etc. as if nothing happened"

Perhaps they maintained this attidude throughout ?
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Tue Jan 14, 2014 5:47 pm

That would be our man Crealock, convinced the papers the Zulu Victory was a figment of the imagination.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Thu Jan 16, 2014 8:39 pm

IMHO, the entire 24th (2nd Warwickshire) Regiment was indeed annihilated on the 1st July 1881.  Sad
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Thu Jan 16, 2014 9:35 pm

Martin your at it again. I'm of the opinion you don't like the Welsh?  Rolling Eyes 
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Thu Jan 16, 2014 10:01 pm

course he does, but i bet he could'nt eat a whole one!  Very Happy 
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Thu Jan 16, 2014 11:58 pm

LOL, nice one Les, and you are correct, I cannot eat a whole one, as the taste of leeks starts getting at me after a while  Very Happy 

Funny, I can't see where the Welsh are mentioned in my post above, impi must be either seeing or imagining things.  scratch 

Actually, my moan is with the then government and their reforms, which moved the regiment from its native homeland of England (where it had lived quite happily for over 184 years), and then just a few short years later virtually ended the regiments existance with yet more reforms, bringing to an end the honour, the glory, the proud name and line number of the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment which it had held longer than any other name in its entire history.

By the way impi, if you don't understand someones posts, it may be best to keep your opinions to yourself before jumping the gun and making assumptions.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Fri Jan 17, 2014 6:45 pm

In that case Martin, perhaps you would like to clarify your remarks on the VC "what price courage" thread started by xhosa, to which I have just responded with a scratching head? Sorry btw, not the most fulsome answer I know.
You do seem to think Wales and England are separate foreign countries when in fact, men and women from both fight and die for the British army and their reigning monarch.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Fri Jan 17, 2014 9:12 pm

kopie please think pre 81.. Salute 
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 3:04 am

kopie.

The regiment was raised in Pluckley, Kent, England in 1689. It was raised for the defence of England, and was later given the English county title of the 2nd Warwickshire regiment, a title that it carried for the best part of 100 years, longer than any other title in its entire history. The reforms made by the government of the day, moved the regiment from its natural homeland of England to the borders of south Wales (a country to which it had no connection whatsoever), whilst at the same time the government moved the 43rd (Monmouthshire) regiment into Oxfordshire, England, which, in my opinion, seems a rather stupid thing to do.

Regarding the countries.

The island of Britain is indeed made up of three different nations (ie; the countries of England, Wales and Scotland), and although we are classed as being 'British', we all have our different national identities, which most of us are very proud of, and those countries all pull together as 'British' when the need arises, ie; kick one in the leg and they all limp together.

My moan is with the then government of the day, why move a regiment from its homeland of England to the borders of south Wales, and move a regiment that was already in the borders of south Wales into Oxfordshire, England? The proud name of the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment only survived another few years before the government made more reforms which virtually ended the existance of the regiment in 1881, however, the Phoenix that rose from the ashes seems more than happy to claim the battle honours, the glory and the V.C's of the pre 1881 regiment, yet hardly gives any credit to, nor makes any mention of its name or its English origins.

The honour and glory of the AZW campaign, including the battles of iSandlwana and Rorke's Drift belong to the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) Regiment and no other, however, many people believe that it was an all Welsh affair, and that the regiment was a Welsh regiment called the swb that fought at RD, and that the V.C's went mostly to Welsh men. But if they read their history they would learn that the regiment was called the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment, and the vast majority of the men were English, and that the V.C's mostly went to Englishmen. This Welsh myth was created by the almost fictional 1964 film 'Zulu'. Baker had an anti English chip on his shoulder and decided to make it an all Welsh affair, thus creating the myth. If the government of the day had not meddled and moved the regiment from its homeland of England, this myth could never have happened, and St Mary's church in Warwick might still have the regiments old Chillianwallah colours on display, as they never would have been taken away in the first place, and the regimental museum might well have been in Warwickshire, England, but through government meddling, a fine regiment lost its identity shortly after it was moved from its homeland, and for that, I blame the then government of the day.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 12:11 pm

I wonder if the Government's decision had anything to do with the fact that when the old 6th Regiment became the 1st Warwickshire in 1832 it was made a Royal Regiment. Its Regimental Depot was established at Warwick in 1873 and in the reforms of 1880/81 it became the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. So it had precedence over a non Royal Regiment and this probably meant the old 24th had to go elsewhere - why Brecon is another question, but there could have been good recruiting reasons. I don't think it was just to annoy the English!

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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 1:08 pm

Steve, I can see your point, but if the government had wanted to save money by amalgamating regiments, it could have amalgamated the 1st and 2nd Warwickshire regiments together as the Royal Warwickshire regiment. The recruiting thing you mention doesn't make sense, the 43rd Monmouthshire were already there in south Wales so why move them to Oxfordshire when they could have simply moved the 2nd Warwickshire regiment to Oxfordshire and leave the 43rd Monmouthshire regiment in south Wales for recruiting purposes. The old 6th (although a Royal regiment), were forced against their will to become a fusilier regiment and also lost their identity, meaning that the historic county of Warwickshire lost both its regiments due to government meddling.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 1:28 pm

Could it be because the 43rd had been a Light Infantry Regiment since 1803 and therefore became Ist Oxfordshire Light Infantry while the 24th were a standard line regiment and would not have fitted the Oxfordshire requirement ?

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 2:08 pm

I can see you point Martin, but
1. That is what the government of 1881 did and you nor I can change that.
2. I really do not think the heroes of RD would care a jot, wehther the descendant regiment museum was located in Brecon, Warwick, or anywhere else. Not one of the 11 RD VC winners were from either Brecon or Warwick(shire).
They would however, I am guessing, be delighted that their VCs were on display in THEIR regimental museum.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 2:14 pm

You could be right Steve, but if they can force a Royal regiment to become a fusilier regiment, then I am sure that they could have reversed the light infantry roll of the 43rd. The Oxfordshire regiment was originally a Line regiment originally numbered the 54th, later renumbered 52nd, it didn't become a Light infantry regiment until 1803, so this could have been easily reversed back to a line regiment. This would have meant that the 43rd could have stayed in south Wales for any recruiting purposes that were required in south Wales, thus giving the option for the government to either amalgamate the 24th with the 6th or the 52nd, there would then have been no reason to move the 24th from its homeland only for it to lose its identity just a few short years later. Government meddling did for the old 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment, they should never have moved it from its homeland.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 2:15 pm

Oh, and in the film Zulu a great British classic, can you point to a character for me (one wil do) who was portrayed as Welsh, when he was in fact an Englishman?
The narration by Richard Burton does indeed incorrectly (2 years prematurely)  say that the 24th were called the SWB, but have you any evidence that his was anything more than a small historical mistake?
Crikey, most war films on any saturday afternoons portray Britain as having WW1 and WW2 single handed and the Americans as having cracked the Enigma code!
You are always going to get minor and major historical inaccuracies by film producers.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 2:23 pm

But a Light Infantry regiment has a different set of skills to a line regiment - you cant just swap them over. No standing in lines and firing volleys like the 24th - think of Sharpe and all that.

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 3:19 pm

kopie, yes. 'Tommy' played by Neil McCarthy (the soldier looking after the calf), he was not Welsh, he was actually from my neck of the woods, Lancashire. And his mate 'Owen' played by Ivor Emmanuel, there was no 'Owen' at RD, nor a Hughes, they were included just to add more false 'Welshness' to the film, just like the bit were 'Owen' starts to sing MoH, which also never took place, and there was no Welsh choir, that also was added to give the film more false 'Welshness'. Although the film is (like you say) a classic, it is almost all fiction. The bit where it is said "this is a Welsh regiment with a few foreigners from England" should never have been allowed to be screened, it is totally false, there was no such thing as a 'Welsh' regiment, just a look at a list of 'British' infantry regiments that took part in the AZW, will confirm that there was not one regiment with a Welsh name.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 3:25 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 3:31 pm

Steve.

Considering that the 52nd regiment was originally a line regiment, and had only been a light regiment since 1803, I don't think it would have taken all that long for them to get used to being a line regiment again. Did not many regiments at one time have 'light companies' and 'Grenadier companies' amongst them, the amalgamation could have taken place and kept a 'light company' from the junior 52nd regiment, who could have been formed into the skirmishers like in Sharpe.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 5:14 pm

Not sure you can say "only since 1803" as if that was a short time. That's nigh on 80 years, encompassing experience in the Peninsular, Waterloo, Crimea, Indian Mutiny and Afghanistan to name just the major campaigns. Fact is the change in approach went the other way, with all regiments becoming much more like the Rifles in the late Victorian period.

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 6:28 pm

Mr M. Cooper wrote:
kopie, yes. 'Tommy' played by Neil McCarthy (the soldier looking after the calf), he was not Welsh, he was actually from my neck of the woods, Lancashire. And his mate 'Owen' played by Ivor Emmanuel, there was no 'Owen' at RD, nor a Hughes, they were included just to add more false 'Welshness' to the film, just like the bit were 'Owen' starts to sing MoH, which also never took place, and there was no Welsh choir, that also was added to give the film more false 'Welshness'. Although the film is (like you say) a classic, it is almost all fiction. The bit where it is said "this is a Welsh regiment with a few foreigners from England" should never have been allowed to be screened, it is totally false, there was no such thing as a 'Welsh' regiment, just a look at a list of 'British' infantry regiments that took part in the AZW, will confirm that there was not one regiment with a Welsh name.

OK Martin, fair points made.
So we are talking "artistic license".
What is your view on "Enigma."?
An American conspiracy? Or artistic license for target audience? And how does this differ if at all, from Zulu?
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 7:10 pm

Hi kopie.

"Artistic licence", I think I would call a lot of it blatant falseness, just look at the way Hook was portrayed in the film, his family walked out in disgust.

Hollywood is full of this sort of 'history altering', and it's all done to get 'bums on seats', entertain the gullible and make lots of money. I have very little time for 'Hollywood' type films, as a lot of what they portray is believed to be fact by those who are gullible enough to swollow it all, and Bakers film is along those same tracks. He made it that way to give the totally false impression that the regiment which bravely defended RD was an all Welsh affair, and thus created the myth that many people believe to be fact. That is the reason why I for one will always try to defend the honour and the spirit of the old 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment, for it was they that fought and died at both iSandlwana and Rorke's Drift, not some mythical Welsh regiment that did not come into existance until two years after the AZW, and if the then government had not moved the regiment from its homeland in the first place, then this myth could never have been created.

Sorry kopie, I have never watched 'Enigma' so cannot comment on it.
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 7:32 pm

Mr M. Cooper wrote:
Sorry kopie, I have never watched 'Enigma' so cannot comment on it.

Good! And a word of advice.

Don't!
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PostSubject: Re: Reported annihilation of 2nd Battalion 24th !   Sat Jan 18, 2014 7:39 pm

Ha ha ha, that bad eh?
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