History of British
Airborne Forces


Pegasus Magazine 


Listen to this ... the best "Para" song that I've ever heard
thanks to Geoff Butler ... here


Remember "P" Coy and "Milling"

That exercise at Northolt

Click here for a short film

Click here for a short film

Parachute Formations

For details on how to order; click the link below

It's pretty impressive ... Click here



Prime Minister Winston S Churchill ... Click here

MOD Recruiting Video ...  Click here

Anybody wishing to join the Para's should watch this video. This was taken by the MOD for training purposes and shows a real insight into what tests are involved in the final week of pre parachute training. This is not a documentary ... Click here

Served in Northern Ireland listen to "The Soldier" Click here
Thanks to John Girdler (ex 3 Queens Reg) E-Mail him !
an ex Soldier through and through ...


4 PARA, The Parachute Regiment's Reserve Battalion, is recruiting NOW and requires high calibre volunteers from the civilian sector.
Become a fully trained military parachutist and deploy on operations with our Regular Battalions throughout the world.
Click here to view an online video of members of the parachute regiment on exercise and on operations around the globe.

These are the most dramatic images of British soldiers (3 Para) on the front line ever shot by the troops themselves.
The shout of "Man down!" can be heard as an officer (Royal Irish) is badly wounded...
As he lies bleeding, medics rush towards him and he is taken away from the battlefield on a quad bike. 
The film also shows British soldiers storming a house. They burst through the doors screaming at each other to take up the correct positions. 

A grenade is thrown into a cellar and, through the dust, a Taliban fighter is shot dead. An Army source said: "The footage is unique because no TV crew would ever be permitted to accompany elite forces on such a dangerous mission. It was also the biggest operation this year, involving 200 elite British forces against a larger Taliban force. 

Afghan war: the home movie

Revealed: troops’ own footage, some taken on mobile phones, of fighting the Taliban ... 
Michael Smith Blog http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-2508268,00.html 

Want to see 3 Para in action in Afghanistan ... Still Photo's
Thanks to "The Sunday Times"
Please Click Here

Want to see 3 Para in action in Afghanistan ... Video Thanks to "The Sunday Times"
Please Click Here

It shows a series of fire-fights at the “platoon houses” in the north of the British-controlled Helmand province and RAF and US aircraft launching strikes on the insurgents. The footage and photographs graphically demonstrate the relentlessness of the fighting that General David Richards, the Nato commander in Afghanistan, has said was the fiercest for British forces since the Korean war in the 1950s.
The first six British soldiers to die in Helmand were killed in Sangin, the centre of the province’s opium processing industry.
Soldiers recorded material on mobile phone cameras for a video, circulated among paratroopers, with a gung-ho musical soundtrack. It opens with a spoof Star Wars style sequence boasting of their triumphs.
Such images, filmed in part by the soldiers because the media were being kept away, are likely to be the last of their kind because in October the Ministry of Defence banned the use of cameras on operations. This was not for security reasons, but because they “may cause significant embarrassment to the MoD”.
In addition to the footage, The Sunday Times has obtained detailed accounts by officers of the 3rd Battalion the Parachute Regiment of operations in Sangin. The accounts record the leading role played by A Company, which was based in the government district centre in Sangin, and of 1 Platoon in particular.
One of the platoon’s section leaders was Corporal Bryan Budd, the posthumous winner of the VC. It also included Private Peter McKinley who won a Military Cross. The platoon was commanded by Lieutenant Hugo Farmer who won a Distinguished Gallantry Cross, second only to the VC. British servicemen deployed in southern Afghanistan during the summer have won more than 70 awards, including Budd’s VC, a George Cross, three Distinguished Gallantry Crosses, 11 Military Crosses and four Distinguished Flying Crosses.
To read the full account ... please Click Here

To test the physical fitness, determination and mental robustness, under conditions of stress, to determine whether an individual has the self discipline and motivation required for service with Airborne Forces.


Logr Race


Regular Parachute Regiment Recruits and All-Arms officers/soldiers undertake the same basic tests. Parachute Regiment recruits attempt Test Week at week 20 of their CIC Course. All-Arms candidates attempt Test Week after a two and a half week 'build up' phase. Out of necessity (TA Soldiers do not have the same opportunities to prepare that the regulars have), the TA Test Week is slightly different. During Test Week, candidates will be expected to run, march and carry dead weights over 1-20 miles on undulating terrain. Test Week comprises of 8 separate events over a four and a half day period. 7 events are scored, one (The Tranasium) is a straight pass/fail. Each event is designed to assess a candidates physical fitness, mental robustness and determination. A candidate who fails to display the appropriate level of self discipline and motivation throughout Test week will fail the course.

P Coy is both physically and mentally demanding. Candidates can expect to be pushed to their limits and beyond. The prize, for those who are successful, is the award of the coveted 'maroon beret' and the opportunity to go on to conduct the Basic Parachute Course.

Read about the Regiment

But, we all know of someone who would like to be part of the best Regiment in the British Army  

Sadly ... we know of a man who believes that he served with the "Parachute Regiment" 

This man is *NOT* a Para ... and never will be

Over the last few years the guy on the left has been claiming to be a Colour Sergeant in 2 Para. He has also been wearing the General Service Medal for Northern Ireland. The Long Service and Good Conduct Medal a UN medal and one other GSM. Recent checks have been made on him by Police through the Army Records Office. I have been informed by Police he is not allowed to wear these medals. Police state if he is seen wearing Para Regiment uniform again they are to be informed...

Read the full story here

He lives in: Gypsy Way High Halstow Rochester Kent

A Brief History of British Airborne Forces:

In 1940, Britain's darkest hour, when Britain faced invasion, the Prime Minister, Mr Winston Churchill, sought the means to strike back at the enemy. One example was his memo of 22 June, instructing the War Office ' - we ought to have a corps of at least 5,000 parachute troops.' and it is from this date that British airborne forces start their history. Despite a lack of experience and equipment, a small band of resourceful men began at once to create this new force. Events moved fast; the Central Landing School was set up at Ringway, Manchester, by Army and RAF staff: men of No. 2 Commando were selected for training, and the first jumps carried out on 13 July. In September the first Hotspur gliders were ordered.

By the end of 1940, 2 Commando, now 500 strong with a parachute and a glider wing, was renamed 11th Special Air Service Battalion. In February 1941, only nine months after formation, the first airborne operation took place, when 38 men parachuted into Southern Italy to destroy the Tragino Aqueduct.

After these tentative trials, 1941 was a year of development and expansion. The 1st Parachute Brigade was formed in September, and shortly afterwards, and infantry brigade became the 1st Airlanding Brigade, with four airlanding battalions and supporting arms and services, to start training with the gliders now coming off the production line. In India the 50th Indian Parachute Brigade was formed. Major General F A M Browning was appointed Commander Paratroops and Airborne Troops. From his small HQ, the 1st Airborne Division was formed in November. In December, the Glider Pilot Regiment was established, as part of the Army Air Corps, to fly the gliders: initially Hotspurs and Wacos, then Horsas and Hamilcars. The officer and sergeant pilots, all trained soldiers, fought many gallant actions along side the airborne troops they had landed. Later in August 1942, all parachute battalions became battalions of The Parachute Regiment in this new corps.

In February 1942, C Company 2nd Parachute Battalion, under Major John Frost, carried out the highly successful parachute raid to capture a vital part of a German radar installation at Bruneval in northern France. During the year, the 1st Airborne Division was built up, based on the two brigades, with the newly formed 2nd Parachute Brigade, together with a full compliment of supporting arms and services, trained to land by parachute or glider. 38 Group RAF was created to work closely with the division.
In November, 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions carried out three separate battalion operations in North Africa, to support the First Army's advance towards Tunis. During the winter of 1942, the 1st Parachute Brigade fought hard battles in the Tunisian hills, earning a reputation within the Army as high-class infantry: and, from their German opponents, the name 'Red Devils'.

In May 1943, this brigade was joined by the rest of 1st Airborne Division in North Africa, and by the 4th Parachute Brigade from the Middle East. Preparations started for further airborne operations into Southern Europe. In the UK, 6th Airborne Division was created, based on the 3rd Parachute Brigade, and two of the original air-landing battalions. Other elements were converted to form 5th Parachute Brigade and the divisional units. The 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion joined the 6th Airborne Division at this time. On 10 July 1943, British and American airborne troops spearheaded the Allied invasion of Sicily. 1st Air Landing Brigade in their gliders landed first, followed three days later by 1st Parachute Brigade. Landings were scattered and casualties were heavy, especially among the glider-borne troops but the objective was taken. In September the division operated briefly in Southern Italy, before returning to England, less 22nd Parachute Brigade Group, to prepare for the invasion of Europe.

On 6 June 1944, D-Day, 6th Airborne Division carried out an airborne assault into Normandy to seize important bridges, to destroy the battery at Merville, and to hold the high ground overlooking the left flank of the Allied bridgehead. Using aggressive tactics against strong enemy attacks, the division, after fighting for nearly six months, took part in the Allied invasion of the North of France on 5 August. Two weeks later, the brigade was withdrawn to prepare for the liberation of Greece. Landing near Athens, they helped the Allied Forces bring peace to the country amidst a bitter civil war.

In September, as the Allies approached Germany, 1st Airborne Division, with 82nd and 101st US Airborne Divisions, mounted Operation Market Garden, an attempt to secure the bridges needed for an advance into Germany. 1st Airborne Division's objective, the bridge at Arnhem, was held for four days, and remnants of the division fought on for another five days until ordered to withdraw.

Just before Christmas 1944, 6th Airborne Division was hurriedly dispatched to the Ardennes to help stem the German counter-offensive, which threatened to split the Allied armies. After fighting in the snow-covered forests for two months, the division was withdrawn to prepare for the final airborne operation of the war in Europe. In one huge air armada, 6th British and 17th US Airborne Divisions were landed on the east bank of the River Rhine near Wesel. After a pause, the division fought on across Germany to reach the Baltic first, and to meet the advancing Russian Army.

As the war in Europe ended, the re-formed 1st Airborne Division, after a short spell in Norway, was disbanded, and many of its units amalgamated into three 6th Airborne Division, which was ordered to the Far East for further operations. 5th Parachute Brigade, already there at the time of the Japanese surrender, landed by sea in Malaya and was then sent on to Java to help restore order. In September 1945, 6th Airborne Division was sent to Palestine to be part of the Middle East strategic reserve, but instead became embroiled in the long and thankless task of maintaining peace in that troubled land. With the final withdrawal in 1948 from Palestine the division was disbanded.

British Airborne Forces which in 1944 numbered some 35,000, were now reduced to one brigade, the 2nd Parachute Brigade Group in Germany and this became the nucleus of the post-war Regular Airborne Forces. It was re-designated 16th Parachute Brigade Group, and its battalions merged with those returned from Palestine, to be the present 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions of The Parachute Regiment, together with supporting Arms and Services. In 1947, a Territorial Airborne Division was formed, also numbered 16 to maintain the numbers of the original divisions. This formation was recruited through the length and breadth of the UK. In 1956, it was reduced to one brigade group, the 44th.

The immediate post-war internal security operations in Java and Palestine were a distinct change from the more dramatic airborne warfare of the past, but they were, in differing forms, to be the continuing pattern for the next 40 years.

In 1951, 16th Parachute Brigade, starting to regain its airborne capability, was sent to Cyprus at the time of the Anglo-Iranian oil crisis, but soon became involved in maintaining the security of the Suez Canal Zone. This corner of the world became familiar to the brigade, for in 1956 it returned to Cyprus on stand-by to intervene in the Suez Canal situation, but instead it was drawn into the anti-EOKA operations in the mountains of Cyprus, breaking off briefly to carry out the unique parachute assault to capture the airfield at Port Said by the 3rd Battalion, which was followed by the rest of the brigade landing by sea. In 1958, the brigade was again in Cyprus, when there was trouble in Lebanon, but at short notice it was flown into Jordan to protect the sovereignty of that country.

In 1961, the 2nd Battalion, based in Cyprus, flew into Kuwait to deter a threatened Iraqi invasion, and for the next six years a parachute battalion group was stationed in the Arabian Gulf. The 3rd Battalion in 1964 fought an old-fashioned mountain war against dissidents in the Radfan, north of Aden. In 1965, the 2nd Battalion, with D (Patrol) Company 3rd Battalion, were in the jungles of Borneo, defending the borders against Indonesian infiltration. A Parachute Squadron had gained previous experience of jungle warfare in the mid-50s serving with the Special Air Service Regiment in Malaya. Back in Aden again in 1967, the 1st Battalion had to deal with urban terrorists in the last months of that colony.

The Parachute Regiment, in 1969, started the first of its many tours in Northern Ireland, which have continued throughout the past 30 plus years... The MOD does not want to have a page for those who served in Northern Ireland, if you can find one, please let me know.

In 1977, as a defence economy measure, a sad decision was taken by the Ministry of Defence to disband the Army's most flexible formation, the 16th Parachute Brigade Group, and to disperse its units under other HQs; a year later, its counterpart in the Territorial Army, the highly effective 44th Parachute Brigade Group, met the same fate.

Nevertheless, in 1982, when the Argentineans invaded the Falkland Islands, and swift, decisive action was demanded, the Parachute Forces, with the Royal Marine Commandos, were to the fore, all operating under command of HQ 3rd Commando Brigade. The actions of the 2nd Battalion at Goose Green and on Wireless Ridge; of the 3rd Battalion in their march across the island to Teal Inlet, and on Mount Longdon, with their affiliated Parachute and Commando Artillery, Engineers, Signals and Medical units, showed that they still maintained the same skill and the same spirit of their forebears, some 40 years before, who fought in the hills of Tunisia, the woods of Normandy and the houses of Arnhem..

Today the same traditions are retained within the new 5th Airborne Brigade, and by the three separate battalions of the Territorial Army.

In 1999 the 1st Battalion spearheaded the NATO intervention in, The Balkans and 5th Airborne Brigade was disbanded. It was replaced by 16th Air Assault Brigade consisting of infantry troops mounted in Apache helicopters. At present battalions of The Parachute Regiment are not a part of this brigade except for providing it's Pathfinder Platoon.

Sadly, defence cuts are still taking their toll. Major cuts have hit the three Territorial battalions. In 1993, the 15th (Scottish Volunteer) Battalion was reduced to one company, and re-titled 15 Company, 4th (V) Battalion. The 10th (Volunteer) Battalion was dismembered in 1999 and its remnants also attached to the 4th (Volunteer) Battalion.

Operation Telic

4 PARA soldiers served with 1 and 3 PARA during the invasion of Iraq. More recently they have been in Iraq as part of the defence force around the UK logistics base.


The Pegasus Journal is the magazine of The Parachute Regiment and airborne forces and is published three times a year. Produced in full colour the Journal keeps serving and retired soldiers informed of news and events. Every addition carries pages dedicated to the Parachute Regiment Association and a Yearbook dedicated to the PRA. The subscription costs £13 per year and can be obtained by sending a cheque to Pegasus Journal, RHQ, The Parachute Regiment, Flagstaff House, Napier Road, Colchester, Essex. C02 7SW


To Mark the 60th anniversary of the Pegasus Journal the first edition has been re-printed. This A5 publication will make a great Christmas present and can be obtained from DRA Books at 8 Creykes Court, The Millfields, Plymouth PL1 3JB. Please send cheque for £8.99 payable to DRA books.

Info from Wikipedia about The Parachute Regiment click here or read about 16th Air Assault Brigade here