Regiments
Of the Malta Garrison
Royal Irish Rifles
(83rd/86th)

The Royal Irish Rifles (83rd/86th)

Royal Ulster
A Harp surmounted by a Crown, with a scroll below the harp inscribed Quis Separabit, (Who shall separate us). The Harp and Crown are from the Order of St Patrick, and the motto is that of the Order which was instituted by King George III in 1783.

The Royal Irish Rifles was formed on 1 July 1881, through the amalgamation of The 83rd (County of Dublin) Regiment of Foot, with The 86th (Royal County Down) Regiment of Foot.

Both regiments were raised in 1793. The 83rd became The First Battalion of The Royal Irish Rifles. The 86th became The Second Battalion The Royal Irish Rifles, although neither regiments had been rifle units.

In 1920 the regimental name changed to The Royal Ulster Rifles.

On 1 July 1968, The Royal Ulster Rifles merged with The Royal Irish Fusiliers (Princess Victoria's), and The Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers to form The Royal Irish Rangers.

The 2nd/The Royal Irish Rifles

1891 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles

27 Mar 1891 The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles embarked in Egypt on 22 March. It arrived in Malta on 27 March 1891.

It had an average strength of 611 men, with 468 admissions (766/1000 mean strength) into hospital and 1 death (1.63/1000 mean strength). 5 invalids returned to England.

Its average constantly sick was 22.54 (30.89/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 13.46 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 17.58 days.

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles moved into Pembroke Camp, Fort Chambray Gozo and Isola Barracks.

Baptisms in 1891:

Burials in Rinella Military Cemetery in 1891:

1892 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles had an average strength of 1050 men.

It had 777 admissions (740/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 9 deaths (8.57/1000 mean strength). 30 invalids returned to England.

Its average constantly sick was 63.72 (60.68/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 22.21 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 30.02 days.

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles was at Pembroke Camp with detachments at Fort St Angelo for 3 months. It was in Isola District for 6 months and at Fort Manoel and Hutments for 3 months with a detachment at Marsamxetto Barracks.

Baptisms in 1892:

Burials at Rinella Military Cemetery in 1892:

1893 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles

Sgt G Simonds
Sgt G. Simmonds 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles died on 6 June 1893 aged 24 yrs. (Pieta Military Cemetery)

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles had an average strength of 952 men.

It had 560 admissions (588.2/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 13 deaths (13.65/1000 mean strength). 19 invalids returned to England.

Its average constantly sick was 37.58 (39.47/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 14.41 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 24.49 days.

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles was at Fort Manoel and Hutments for 12 months.

Baptisms in 1893:

Burials in Pietà Military Cemetery in 1893:

1894 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles had an average strength of 847 men. It had 409 admissions (482.9/1000 mean strength) into hospital with 3 deaths (3.54/1000 mean strength). 4 invalids returned to England.

Its average constantly sick was 37.88 (32.91/1000 mean strength). The average sick time to each soldier was 12.01 days. The average duration of cases of sickness was 24.88 days.

23 May Bugler Ramsay 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles was granted a compassionate sum of £25 for having his leg amputated when a wall collapsed on him at the Lazaretto.

The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles Regiment was at Fort Manoel and Hutments.

18 Nov 1894 The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles embarked for Bombay on the transport Victoria where it arrived on 2 December 1894. It was relieved in Malta by the 2nd/Leinster Regiment which arrived from England. The 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles served in India until 25 January 1899, when it embarked for Belfast.

Baptisms in 1894:

Burials in Pietà Military Cemetery in 1894:

Burials in in Rinella Military Cemetery in 1894:

1895 2nd/Royal Irish Rifles

A detachment of 174 men was left in Malta when the regiment embarked for India.

Baptisms in 1895:

The 6th/The Royal Irish Rifles

The 6th/The Royal Irish Rifles landed at Suvla Bay, Gallipoli in August 1915, as part of the 29th Bde 10th (Irish) Division.

1915 – 6th/Royal Irish Rifles

Burials at Pietà Military Cemetery in 1915:

Bibliography