Customs of the Army (1956)

Contents - Sections - I - II - III - IV - V - VI - VII - VIII - IX



1.     On Parade

The practice of saluting must be carried out most punctiliously, whether on or off parade. On parade a Senior Officer, or even one who is of equal rank but higher in the seniority roll, must be addressed as "Sir" and saluted. This is the custom of the Army and an officer must be meticulous in complying with it.

2.     Off Parade

In many regiments and corps, when in uniform, Captains and Subalterns always salute Field Officers (i.e., Majors and above) and address them as, Sir." The Adjutant should be saluted on first meeting him in the morning. An officer should find out the regimental or unit customs on this matter.

When an officer in plain clothes meets a Field Officer, whom he recognizes, he will take off his hat to him.

3.     Returning Salutes

It is an official's duty to return a salute smartly, with the correct hand and without a cigarette or pipe in the mouth.

When returning a salute, an officer should look towards the person whose salute he is returning. An officer must remember to “return” a salute and not merely acknowledge it.

4.     Dismissing Troops

An officer must always return punctiliously salutes paid to him by bodies of troops when dismissing. He should stand siill, facing the dismissing body of troops, and should salute when they do so. If a Senior Officer is watching a parade, the officer, warrant or non- commissioned officer in charge of the squad should ask permission from the officer concerned before dismissing the parade.

5.     Offices

When entering and leaving military offices an officer should always salute any officer in there at the time, whether senior or junior.

When an officer, senior to the one occupying an office, enters that office the junior officer should stand up.

6.     General

It is the duty of every officer to ensure that all orders regarding saluting are enforced at all times, both in and out of barracks.

An officer must not be self-conscious about checking other ranks.

In all units saluting should be a source of natural pride shared by all ranks.

7.     Other Services

Junior officers must salute Senior Officers of the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force of the rank of Lieutenant-Commander in the Royal Navy, and Squadron-Leader in the Royal Air Force and above.

When visiting any of Her Majesty's ships or Royal.

Naval Establishments the Quarterdeck must be saluted both on arrival and departure.

An officer must always salute on boarding or leaving any of Her Majesty's ships, or foreign men-of-war.

8.     Other Compliments

(a)     When in uniform an officer will always salute uncased Colours, funerals, and when passing the Cenotaph. When in plain clothes he should raise his hat.

(b)     When the National Anthem is played, an officer in uniform should stand to attention and salute; if in plain clothes he should remove his hat. When indoors an officer should only stand to attention. If attending an outdoor Church Parade at which head-dress is worn an officer will not, however, salute when the National Anthem is played.

(c)     When the Guard turns out to a General Officer or the Commanding Officer, all personnel near by should stand to attention, but not salute.

(d)     It is a custom in most regiments and corps for all ranks in the vicinity of the square to stand to attention while “Retreat" is being sounded on the bugle. They do not salute.

Customs of the Army (1956) - Section III

Contents - Sections - I - II - III - IV - V - VI - VII - VIII - IX