- Sep 7, 2006
I always thought they were part of the Parachute Regiment. Didn't realise they were 16 Abn Brg.
The Brigade had a pathfinder platoon until 77, then the onus was put onto the Battalions to have their own path finder platoons. The Brigade decided to re raise another pathfinder platoon (although it's probably closer to company size) in 85. The original one after WW2 was the precursor for G Squadron 22 SAS.
Post war the Regular Army's parachute force was reduced to the 16 Parachute Brigade. To provide this formation with a pathfinder capacity the Guards Independent Parachute Company was formed in 1948 on the disbandment of Composite Guards Parachute Battalion. The Company deployed on a wide variety of operations between 1948 and 1977. It was deployed to Borneo during the Borneo Confrontation where it was used provide reinforcement to the SAS and its professional performance resulted in the formation of G Sqn of that regiment in 1966.
- ^ Peter Dickens. Secret War In South East Asia. Greenhill Books. p. 211. "In September, however, the Guards Independent Parachute Company under Major L.G.S. Head were allowed across the Sabah border to act offensively... ...This professional performance and others were to result in the formation of 'G' Squadron in 1966"
- ^ Tony Geraghty (1980). Who Dares Wins. Arms and Armour Press. p. 52. "-while the Parachute Brigade's Guards Independent (Pathfinder) Company was sent to Borneo to learn something like an SAS role on the job (as was the 2nd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment). Later the Guards Company would provide the nucleus of the new G Squadron."