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18 (UKSF) Signal Regiment is a regiment of the Royal Corps of Signals in the British Army that provides Communications and Information Systems (CIS) support to the United Kingdom Special Forces (UKSF).[4][5] The regiment is under the operational command of the Director Special Forces and includes signal squadrons from both the Royal Corps of Signals and the Royal Navy.[6]

18 (UKSF) Signal Regiment
Insigne du 18 (UKSF) Signal Regiment.svg
Active5 April 2005 – present[1]
Country United Kingdom
Branch British Army
TypeSpecial forces
RoleSpecial operations communications support
SizeOne regiment
Part ofUnited Kingdom Special Forces
Garrison/HQStirling Lines[2]
Motto(s)Latin: Colloquendo Imperamus
(Translation: "Command through Communications")
Engagements
Insignia
Abbreviation18 (UKSF) Sig Regt

Contents

HistoryEdit

The regiment traces its lineage to 18 Signal Regiment formed in 1959 in Singapore as part of the Far East Land Forces (FARELF) which was disbanded on 1 December 1971.[7]

The 18 (UKSF) Signal Regiment was secretly established in April 2005 at the same time as the Special Reconnaissance Regiment (SRR).[1][8][9] The establishment of the SRR was announced by the Secretary of State for Defence in the House of Commons.[10]

The regiment was formed around the existing communication capabilities of the Special Air Service (SAS) and Special Boat Service (SBS), namely 264 (SAS) Signal Squadron based at Stirling Lines, Herefordshire, SBS Signal Squadron based at RM Poole, Dorset and 63 (SAS) Signal Squadron (V) of the Territorial Army (now known as Army Reserve).[1][9]

264 (SAS) Signal Squadron was formed in July 1966 to support 22 SAS and traces its lineage to a signal troop formed in 1951 for the Malayan Scouts.[11] 63 (SAS) Signal Squadron (V) was formed on 1 April 1967 to support 21 SAS and 23 SAS from elements of 41 Signal Regiment, 63 Signal Regiment, 327 Signal Squadron and 115 Field Squadron Royal Engineers.[12][13]

The regiment also incorporated 267 (SRR) Signal Squadron to support the SRR and a new squadron 268 (UKSF) Signal Squadron.[1] 267 Signal Squadron had been formed on 18 December 1987.[14] 268 (UKSF) Signal Squadron incorporated the strategic communications element from 264 (SAS) Signal Squadron which provided long range strategic communications.[9]

The regimental emblem is a Xiphos sword with the number 18 in Roman numerals and three signal flashes representing the three supported regiments: SAS, SBS and SRR.[15]

The regiment served in Afghanistan and Iraq with several operators killed on special forces operations.[3]

63 (SAS) Signal Squadron (R) was re-designated as 63 (UKSF) Signal Squadron circa 2014.[16]

RoleEdit

The regiment is tasked to deliver the "military CIS capability to enable UK Special Forces operations worldwide in support of Government, Foreign, Security and Defence Policy" with operators providing close support to the SAS, the SBS and the SRR.[4][17][3]

Selection and trainingEdit

Regular members of all three services of the Armed Forces and members from the Army Reserve are eligible to apply to join the regiment.[18]

An applicant is required to successfully pass a 5 day Briefing Course and then successfully complete a 25 week UK Special Forces Communicators Course (UKSFCC) to become a Special Forces Communicator (SFC).[18][1] Prior to attempting the UKSFCC, applicants have the option of attending a 3 week SFC Preparation Course.[18]

The Special Forces Communicators Course consists of six phases: technical trade assessment, general support communications, physical aptitude, close support communications, conduct after capture, military training and special forces parachute training.[1][17]

Applicants for reserve service in 63 (UKSF) Signal Squadron have to successfully pass an Assessment Course conducted over three weekends and then complete a two week Royal Signals Communications Training course to be eligible to be accepted as Fit for Appointment to the squadron.[16] The applicant is then posted to the squadron to carry out a probationary year completing mandatory courses and a two week training exercise to achieve Fit for Mobilisation.[16]

Component unitsEdit

The regiment comprises:

  • SBS Signal Squadron[1]
  • 264 (SAS) Signal Squadron[1]
  • 267 (SRR) Signal Squadron[1]
  • 268 (UKSF) Signal Squadron[1]
  • 63 (UKSF) Signal Squadron[1][13]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Redshaw, Bernard (August 2005). "A New Royal Signals Unit" (PDF). The wire : The Magazine of the Royal Corps of Signals. Vol. 59 no. 4. Portsmouth: Holbrook Printers Ltd. ISSN 1462-9259. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 January 2007.
  2. ^ Secretary of State for Defence (26 January 2011). "Armed Forces - 26 Jan 2011 : Column 360W". www.parliament.uk. Retrieved 11 July 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d "Royal Corps of Signals". National Army Museum,. Retrieved 11 July 2019.
  4. ^ a b "18 (UKSF) Sig Regt". British Army. Archived from the original on 4 April 2012.
  5. ^ Ministry of Defence. The Prospectus of the Royal Corps of Signals (PDF) (13 ed.). 2007-2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on 9 January 2008.
  6. ^ Norton, Col. Graham (August 2012). "Army 2020 Corps Restructuring" (PDF). The wire : The Magazine of the Royal Corps of Signals. Vol. 66 no. 4. Portsmouth: Holbrook Printers Ltd. ISSN 1462-9259. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 August 2012.
  7. ^ The Royal Corps of Signals : unit histories of the Corps (1920-2001) and its antecedents by Cliff Lord and Graham Watson 2003, p. 62, at Google Books
  8. ^ Smith, Michael (7 August 2005). "Special forces turn sights from Iraq to hunt terrorists in Britain". The Sunday Times. p. 2.
  9. ^ a b c Ebbutt, Giles (13 July 2005). "UK restructures special forces communications". Jane's Defence Weekly. United Kingdom: Jane's Information Group. 42 (28): 6. ISSN 0265-3818.
  10. ^ Geoff HoonSecretary of State for Defence (5 April 2005). "Special Reconnaissance Regiment". Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). House of Commons. col. 131WS.
  11. ^ The Royal Corps of Signals : unit histories of the Corps (1920-2001) and its antecedents by Cliff Lord and Graham Watson 2003, p. 106, at Google Books
  12. ^ "Special Forces Signals (Reserve)". British Army. Archived from the original on 12 February 2010.
  13. ^ a b "63 (UKSF) Signal Squadron". British Army. Retrieved 2 August 2019.
  14. ^ The Royal Corps of Signals : unit histories of the Corps (1920-2001) and its antecedents by Cliff Lord and Graham Watson 2003, p. 106, at Google Books
  15. ^ "The Regimental Emblem". The Whisky Vault. Retrieved 3 August 2019.
  16. ^ a b c "63 (UKSF) Signal Squadron". British Army. Archived from the original on 7 November 2014.
  17. ^ a b Fight to Win: Deadly Skills of the Elite Forces by Chris Ryan 2009, p. 315, at Google Books
  18. ^ a b c "18 (UKSF) Signal Regiment" (PDF). The wire : The Magazine of the Royal Corps of Signals. Vol. 69 no. 2. Portsmouth: Holbrook Printers Ltd. April 2015. ISSN 1462-9259. Retrieved 2 August 2019.