The 2nd Opium War is worth a special mention, as The Queen’s, The Buffs, the 31st (Huntingdonshire) and the 67th (South Hampshire) all participated in this conflict. It involved an Anglo-French Expeditionary Force, which compelled the Chinese to observe trading treaties. The most significant battle was the taking of the Taku Forts. When, in 1860, the Chinese emperor declined to reply to a note demanding an apology for firing on British ships and his government's failure to act on the provisions of the Treaty of Tientsin, a combined Anglo-French task force was sent to enforce compliance.
The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment was represented by its forebears in every theatre of the Second World War. Six battalions of The Queen’s, three of The Buffs, three of The East Surreys, , five battalions of The Royal Sussex, five battalions of The Queen’s Own Royal West Kents, three battalions of The Middlesex and the 2nd Battalion of The Hampshires to France went with the British Expeditionary Force. They were hopelessly ill-equipped to deal with the German Blitzkrieg (Lightning War) when it began on the 10th May 1940.
After twenty-one years of active service in India, the 67th (South Hampshire) was ordered back to England in 1826. In commemoration of this, King George IV authorised the figure of the Royal Bengal Tiger with the word ‘India’ superscribed to be borne on its Regimental Colour and other appointments. The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment retains this honour today, maintains the nickname of ‘The Tigers’ and wears the Indian Tiger shoulder flash.
The War of The Austrian Succession arose from a dispute between three candidates for the Austrian throne and Britain's principal enemies were again France and Spain.The Buffs, the 31st and the 37th Foot fought at Dettingen, which was a great victory and the last occasion on which an English king (George II) commanded his army in battle. George II was also quoted as saying to his wife Caroline on her death bed when she suggested that he remarry - "No I shall have mistresses".
Conflict with France was to continue for many years, despite the end of King William III’s War. It was at this time that many other forebear regiments had their beginnings. They were known by the name of their Colonels, but this Guide will refer to them by their number as a Line regiment in order to avoid confusion, even though the numbering system was not introduced until 1750. Eighteen new regiments were to be raised in the period 1701–1702, six of which were primarily for sea service.
After the end of the Second World War, there was a great deal of agitation amongst many of Britain’s colonies as local populations strove for independence, though the majority carried out the transition peacefully. It was also the period, when all of the Regiments’ ranks were filled with a high proportion of National Servicemen. All maintained the traditions and high standards of their regiments and this was to remain a key feature of life in the infantry up until 1963.