Author Topic: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service  (Read 6099 times)

Offline Stormwell

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Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« on: November 21, 2009, 07:45:08 pm »
The organization of the Royal Reconnaissance Service (RRS) remained largely unchanged from its creation in 1715 right up until the Cardwell Reforms of the 1860s. On the whole it was based upon the British Army of the time but with differences in both rank and uniforms in order to set the Service apart from the Army.

~ ~ ~

RRS Ranks & Structure 1715-1867

Scout-General:- Nominal head and commander of the RRS, reports directly to the Crown.

Scout-Colonel:- Commander of RRS assets on a Regional level, ie 'Scout-Colonel, East Anglia'. Though the 'Scout' prefix isn't always used.

Scout-Major:- Similar role to Scout-Colonel, but on a County level.

Scout-Captain:- Similar role to Scout-Major but oversees a County Hundred or District/Borough within each County.

Lieutenant:- Oversees a platoon strength force within the confines of a Civil Parish.

Swift-Sergeant:- Similar function to that of an Army Sergeant, though the 'Swift' prefix is always used. Sometimes referred to as 'Scout-Sergeant'.

Corporal:- Again, similar function to its Army counterpart.

Senior-Scout:- The RRS's version of a Acting/Lance Corporal, lowest NCO rank and often denotes a seasoned Scout who has served at least five years with the Service.

Scout-Private:- Lowest rank within the RRS, equal to a Private or Trooper in the Army. Referred to as either 'Scout' or 'Private', depends on person addressing.

Other Ranks

There are ranks that exists outside of the regular organization and chain-of-command within the RRS, theses are special cases and shouldn't be considered the norm. Where they fit into the scheme of things is open to debate.

Inspector:- The Service's Field Agents with the authority to operate outside of the local Command. They are most often considered equal to a Scout-Major as they are both answerable to a Scout-Colonel, however an Inspector may defer, if they so wished, to a local commander above the rank of an NCO.

Outrider:- On equal footing to a Scout, but allowed a greater degree of freedom. They serve as the RRS's messengers and mounted scouts, though they are answerable to the Scout-Major of the County to which they call home. An Outrider is ranked denoting their seniority in the form of the following;

Outrider- The lowest ranked member.

Senior-Outrider- Seasoned Outrider having served at least five years with the Service and equal to a Senior Scout as an NCO.

Outrider-Corporal- NCO rank equal to a Corporal.

Outrider-Sergeant- Senior NCO equal to a Sergeant.

Outrider-Lieutenant- Commissioned officer within the rank of the Outriders.

Outrider-Captain- Highest ranking Outrider officer and beholden to the Scout-Major of their home County.

1783 Saw the advanced Outrider ranks being removed from the Service with promotion for Outriders following the Service's regular ranks from Corporal onwards, the rank of Senior Outrider was retained.

Scout-Commandant- Created in 1756 to act as a Field Commander for RRS units operating outside of the British Isles.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2009, 12:43:01 pm by Stormwell »

Offline Magz

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2009, 10:11:51 pm »
Good stuff SW! We'll have to put that on the Wiki too!

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Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2009, 12:03:55 pm »
Thanks, and I've posted it to the wiki. ;)

Next bit.

~ ~ ~

RRS Ranks & Structure 1867-1886

During the Cardwell Reforms of the British Army following the Crimean War, the first major overhaul of the RRS took place in 1866 and came into effect a year later in 1867. This overhaul was mainly done to help streamline the structure and organization of the Service, thereby making more effective use of its resources and manpower.....though in practice it brought the Service more in line with what commanders on a County level were already doing.

Scout-General:- Nominal head and commander of the RRS, reports directly to the Crown.

Scout-Commandant:- Commander of RRS assets on a Country level, ie 'Scout-Commandant, Scotland'. Created to replace the rank of Scout-Colonel in 1867, but used to denote RRS officer-in-command in many of the Empire's colonial holdings such as Canada since 1764.

Scout-Major:- Similar role to Scout-Commandant, but on a Regional level. This replaces the now defunct rank of Scout-Colonel.

Scout-Captain:- Similar role to Scout-Major but oversees a County.

Lieutenant:- Oversees a platoon strength force within the confines of a County District/Borough.

Swift-Sergeant:- Similar function to that of an Army Sergeant, though the 'Swift' prefix is always used. Sometimes referred to as 'Scout-Sergeant'.

Corporal:- Again, similar function to its Army counterpart.

Senior-Scout:- The RRS's version of a Acting/Lance Corporal, lowest NCO rank and often denotes a seasoned Scout who has served at least five years with the Service.

Scout-Private:- Lowest rank within the RRS, equal to a Private or Trooper in the Army.

Other Ranks

Compared to the regular ranks of the Service, only minor changes were made to the Other Ranks.

Inspector:- The Service's Field Agents with the authority to operate outside of the local Command. They are most often considered equal to a Scout-Major as they are both answerable to a Scout-Commandant, however an Inspector may defer, if they so wished, to a local commander above the rank of an NCO.

Outrider:- On equal footing to a Scout, but allowed a greater degree of freedom. They serve as the RRS's messengers and mounted scouts, though they are answerable to the Scout-Major of the County to which they call home. An Outrider ranked as Senior-Outrider is on equal footing to a Senior-Scout this denoting an NCO and an Outrider with five years service.

Field Commander:- Created in 1868, but used as a suffix to denote an officer with field command outside of the British Isles. For example; Scout-Captain James Miller, FC.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2009, 12:43:20 pm by Stormwell »

Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2009, 10:50:32 am »
RRS Ranks & Structure 1886-1923

Following the formation of Torchwood and the siphoning of manpower and resources, the RRS saw another major overhaul in 1886. This further streamlined the Service granting it more independance from the Crown and a shift of focus with regards to its operations, the result was a complete and utter overhaul of the ranks.

Director-General:- Nominal head and commander of the RRS, reports directly to the Crown. Formerly known as 'Scout-General', changed as a result of a shift of directive for the Service.

Director:- Commander of RRS assets on a Country level, but with usually with an added suffix 'Of Operations' when full title is used; ie 'Director Of Operations, Scotland'. This replaces the former rank of Scout-Commandant.

Inspector-General:- Similar role to Director, but on a Regional level. This replaces the now defunct rank of Scout-Major.

County-Inspector:- Similar role to Inspector-General but oversees a County. Replaces the former rank of Scout-Captain.

District-Inspector:- Oversees operations within the confines of a County District/Borough, replaces the rank of Lieutenant.

Field-Inspector:- New rank that replaces the old 'Inspector' rank for the Service's Field Agents. They still retain the authority to operate outside of the local Command. They are answerable to an Inspector-General though a Field Inspector may defer, if they so wished, to a local commander above the rank of an NCO.

Swift-Sergeant:- Similar function to that of an Army Sergeant, though the 'Swift' prefix isn't always used and so may be known simply as 'Sergeant'.

Senior Scout-Constable:- The RRS's version of a Corporal, the lowest NCO rank and often denotes a seasoned Scout who has served at least five years with the Service.

Scout-Constable:- Lowest rank within the RRS, equal to a Private or Trooper in the Army.

Other Ranks

Around this time, major changes were made to the Other Ranks of the Service.

Outrider:- With the raise of the telegraph and faster communications, the rank of Outrider was phrased out by 1890 as its role was considered to be largely defunct. Though couriers mounted on horseback, and later motorcycles, were retained by the Service and used the regular ranks up to and including Sergeant. These couriers were denoted by the suffix of 'Outrider', though on paper this was shortened to 'OR'.

Inspector-Commandant:- Coming into effect from 1887, this rank replaced that of Field Commander and denoted commissioned RRS officers operating outside of the British Isles. This rank was considered to be on equal footing to a Director, heading up RRS operations in places such as India, Canada, New Zealand and Australia.

Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2009, 11:17:35 am »
RRS Ranks & Structure 1923-1940

After the Great War, the Service saw a reduction in both manpower and resources as well as a run-down of operations. The early 1920s saw the final overhaul of the RRS as it entered its last two decades of existence before it was finally merged with Torchwood in 1940 and its remaining staff transferred over.

Director:- Overall Commander of the RRS, though by 1937 the only remaining recognized rank.

Head Inspector:- Oversees operations on a Country-wide basis, second-in-command to the Director. Replaces the former ranks above that of Field Inspector.

Inspector:- Formerly the rank of Field-Inspector with the same role, oversees investigations and operations on a Regional level. Answerable to the Head Inspector and is in effect a local Commander.

Deputy-Inspector:- Assistant to the Inspector, in charge of a 'patch' that either consists of either an entire County or just a District depending on local needs and requirements.

Swift-Sergeant:- Longest retained rank within the Service, but more commonly referred to simply as 'Sergeant'.

Scout-Constable:- The RRS's version of a Corporal, the lowest NCO rank and often denotes a seasoned Scout who has served at least five years with the Service.

Scout:- Shortened to Scout and lowest rank within the RRS, equal to a Private or Trooper in the Army.

Other Ranks

Some minor changes were made to the Other Ranks of the Service, but they were fairly minor.

Outrider:- Retained to denote motorcycle couriers, but was made defunct sometime around the early 1930s. It is suggested that the Great Depression forced the Service make some cuts and so the RRS opted to share the Army's couriers to help reduce costs. The RRS were given the option of reassignment, transfer to the military or dismissal.

Inspector-Commandant:- Retained to head up RRS operations overseas, though very little is mentioned of Inspector-Commandants post-1929.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2009, 12:43:51 pm by Stormwell »

Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2010, 12:05:59 pm »
Looks like I'll be redoing all this, found a useful link;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Commands_of_the_British_Army

Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2011, 04:59:05 pm »
Good idea of uniform.


Offline Magz

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2011, 05:23:02 pm »
Looks good. Jemima will look great in that :D

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Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2011, 01:02:02 pm »
And the RRS Dress Uniform.


Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2011, 05:58:00 pm »
More uniform pics.




Offline Stormwell

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2011, 07:46:11 pm »
Found a couple of really good ones for possibly First World War era.




Offline Magz

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Re: Structure of the Royal Reconnaissance Service
« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2011, 09:12:07 am »
Looks good :)

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