Military Wiki
The Royal New South Wales Regiment
File:Rnswr badge.gif
Cap badge of the Royal New South Wales Regiment
Active 1 July 1960–Present
Country Australia
Branch Army
Type Line Infantry
Role Light Role
Size Four battalions
Part of Royal Australian Infantry Corps
Garrison/HQ 1st/19th Battalion – Orange
2nd/17th Battalion – Pymble
4th/3rd Battalion – Cardiff
41st Battalion – East Lismore
Motto(s) Primus in Terra Australi (First in Australia)
Colonel in Chief HM The Queen
(Royal Australian Infantry Corps)
Colonel of
the Regiment
HE Professor Marie Bashir
(Governor of New South Wales)
Unit Colour Patch 1-19 RNSWR UCP.svg Unit Colour Patch of 2nd - 17th Battalion, Royal New South Wales Regiment.png
Tartan Government
Abbreviation RNSWR

The Royal New South Wales Regiment (RNSWR) is a reserve infantry regiment of the Australian Army based in the state of New South Wales.


The regiment currently consists of four battalions:

Along with these battalions, the regiment's history includes a number of other units that have been removed from the Australian Army's order of battle. These include: the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 13th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 20th, 30th, 33rd, 34th, 35th, 36th, 45th, 53rd, 54th, 55th and 56th Battalions and their associated Second Australian Imperial Force battalions. In addition, through the process of re-roling, the several light horse, armoured or cavalry units have also contributed to the regiment's history such as the 6th New South Wales Mounted Rifles, the 6th Light Horse and the 6th Armoured Regiment.[1]


The regiment was formed in 1960 as a result the amalgamation of all the Citizen's Military Force infantry battalions in New South Wales.[2] This came about through an Army-wide reorganisation of regionally-based infantry battalions and the formation of multi-battalion state-based regiments.[3] The New South Wales Regiment was formed from ten individual regiments:[4]

At the same time that state-based regiments were introduced, the Army also adopted the Pentropic establishment.This required larger battalions, formed with five companies,[5] and as a result the reorganisation saw the previously existing battalions become company-sized elements of the new Pentropically organised battalions. This resulted in a large reduction in the number of New South Wales battalions, falling from 13 to just three.[3] The 1st Battalion (Commando) was formed from the 1st Infantry Battalion (City of Sydney's Own Regiment), which was the only unit transferred intact to a new state regiment.[4] The 2nd and 3rd Battalions were formed through the amalgamation of the remaining battalions, which were reduced to company-size.[4] When the Army moved away from the Pentropic organisation in 1965 and the national service scheme began,[6] there was an expansion of the reserve force and this saw a further three battalions being raised (the 4th, 17th, 41st), with the 19th Battalion formed in 1966 as a remote area battalion. A year after that, the 1st Battalion was reduced to a company, which was amalgamated with the 19th Battalion in 1971.[4] Further amalgamations in 1987 led to the formation of the regiment as it is today. Today, the regiment provides two battalions each to 5th Brigade and 8th Brigade in 2nd Division.[7]


The regiment maintains the following alliances:[8]

Battle honours

The regiment has been awarded a total of 117 battle honours. These come through the regiment's historical predecessors that served in the Mahdist War, the Boer War, the First World War and the Second World War. The first battle honour received was "Suakin 1885", which was awarded to regiment due to the commitment of a 767-strong New South Wales force consisting of four infantry companies, artillery, and a field ambulance.[9] The next battle honour, "South Africa 1899–1902" was awarded to several units based on the participation of their members in various New South Wales contingents.[10] During the First World War, a total of 47 battle honours were awarded.[11] The 1st and 2nd Battalions received a unique battle honour, "Herbertshohe", as they were formed from personnel who had previously served in the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force that fought in German New Guinea.[12] The remaining 68 battle honours were awarded for the Second World War.[13]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Maitland 2001, p. xx.
  2. Maitland 2001, p. xiv.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Grey 2008, p. 228.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Festberg 1972, p. 27.
  5. Grey 2008, pp. 227–228.
  6. Grey 2008, pp. 238–240.
  7. Off Orbat Units of the Royal New South Wales Regiment.
  8. Festberg 1972, p. 28.
  9. Maitland 2001, p. 3.
  10. Maitland 2001, p. xv.
  11. Maitland 2001, pp. 291–292.
  12. Maitland 2001, p. 291.
  13. Maitland 2002, pp. 397–399.
  • Festberg, Alfred (1972). The Lineage of the Australian Army. Melbourne, Victoria: Allara Publishing. ISBN 978-0-85887-024-6. 
  • Grey, Jeffrey (2008). A Military History of Australia (Third ed.). Port Melbourne: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0521697910. 
  • Harris, Ted. "Off Orbat Units of the Royal New South Wales Regiment". Digger History. Archived from the original on 16 April 2009. Retrieved 13 April 2009. 
  • Maitland, Gordon (2001). The Battle History of the Royal New South Wales Regiment. I: 1885–1918. East Roseville, New South Wales: Kangaroo Press. ISBN 07318-1047-3. 
  • Maitland, Gordon (2002). The Battle History of the Royal New South Wales Regiment. II:1939–1945. East Roseville, New South Wales: Kangaroo Press. ISBN 0-7318-1160-7. 

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