badge, headdress, British, The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry Regiment, other ranks
A stringed bugle with a bow at the top of the strings and two tassels, surmounted by a ducal coronet. All in brass. Trio of lugs to reverse.
Worn app. 1898 - 1901.
The predecessor Regiment was formed in 1702 as Colonel Edward Fox's (3rd) Marines but in 1714 was converted to a regiment of foot. In 1747 it was ranked 32nd of Foot and in 1751 officially designated as such. In 1782 the Regiment was re-designated as 32nd (Cornwall) Regiment of Foot, becoming Light Infantry in 1782 as the 32nd Foot (Cornwall) Light Infantry, adopting the strung bugle symbol common to all Light Infantry.
In the Cardwell reforms of 1881 the Regiment merged with the 46th Foot (South Devonshire) to form the Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry. The change of headdress in 1898 brought forward a new badge design, being a strung bugle with a Royal Ducal coronet above, the bugle denoting the light infantry status of the Regiment and the coronet in acknowledgement that the Prince of Wales was the hereditary Duke of Cornwall. Following the death of Queen Victoria, the badge was changed by the addition of a scroll bearing CORNWALL placed between the coronet and bugle.
The badge had a red backing, commemorating the action of the 32nd's Light Company at the Battle of Brandywine in the American War of Independence. During World War Two, an additional backing was worn, of a two-inch square of Light Infantry Green.
In 1958 the Regiment merged with the Somerset Light Infantry to form the Somerset and Cornwall Light Infantry. They became part of the Light Infantry Brigade and regular battalions were expected to wear the Brigade badge.
In 1968 the Brigade became The Light Infantry, the constituent Regiments becoming its battalions. The Somerset and Cornwall became 1st Battalion, but were disbanded in 1993.