In pictures: Scottish soldiers, now and then

Soldiers from the King's Own Scottish Borderers regiment (KOSB) march along Princes Street in Edinburgh in April 1961. Picture: TSPL

Soldiers from the King's Own Scottish Borderers regiment (KOSB) march along Princes Street in Edinburgh in April 1961. Picture: TSPL

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AS THE country prepares to mark Remembrance Day on November 11, thoughts turn to the contributions and sacrifices made by the Armed Forces.

Scots have long served in armies across Europe. The Garde Écossaise was founded in 1418 to be the personal bodyguard of the French king, and finally disbanded in 1830.

Four Scots Guards in training near Frederichton, New Brunswick, Canada pose in a birchwood wigwam. Picture: Ian Porteous

Four Scots Guards in training near Frederichton, New Brunswick, Canada pose in a birchwood wigwam. Picture: Ian Porteous

During the Thirty Years War in the early 17th century, thousands of Scots travelled to fight under various commanders on the continent.

Following the Act of Union in 1707, English and Scottish regiments were brought together to form the first British Army.

Scottish regiments have played crucial roles in some of the most significant battles in modern history.

The Scots Greys are said to have shouted ‘Scotland Forever!’ while charging into battle against Napoleon’s French army at Waterloo in 1815.

A soldier from the 1st Battalion Gordon Highlanders celebrates payday at Redford Barracks in Edinburgh, April 1966. Picture: TSPL

A soldier from the 1st Battalion Gordon Highlanders celebrates payday at Redford Barracks in Edinburgh, April 1966. Picture: TSPL

The Black Watch were the first to cross the Rhine as the Allies pushed east into Nazi Germany in 1945 following the D-Day landings the previous year.

Following the Second World War, the number of Scots serving in the army remained high as National Service continued until 1960. This required healthy males 17 to 21-years-old were to serve in the armed forces for 18 months, and remain on the reserve list for four years.

The end of the Cold War saw many Western nations reducing their military expenditure.

The 2004 decision by the then Labour Government to merge Scotland’s traditional infantry regiments under one name and cap badge prompted a fierce campaign of opposition from veterans, but ultimately the new Royal Regiment of Scotland was created in 2006.

A soldier explains a MOBA anti-tank gun to a crowd of youngsters during a display at Leith Links in September 1963. Picture: TSPL

A soldier explains a MOBA anti-tank gun to a crowd of youngsters during a display at Leith Links in September 1963. Picture: TSPL

Mary, Princess Royal, inspects the 8th Battalion Royal Scots at a new TA centre in Penicuik' in 1957. Picture: TSPL

Mary, Princess Royal, inspects the 8th Battalion Royal Scots at a new TA centre in Penicuik' in 1957. Picture: TSPL

The 278 Lowland Field Regiment TA leave Waverley station for their annual camp at West Down, near Salisbury, in 1961. Picture: TSPL

The 278 Lowland Field Regiment TA leave Waverley station for their annual camp at West Down, near Salisbury, in 1961. Picture: TSPL

Major Richard Barker, officer commanding, orders 'eyes right' during the passing out parade of army reservists at Redford Barracks in July 2015. Picture: Bill Jamieson

Major Richard Barker, officer commanding, orders 'eyes right' during the passing out parade of army reservists at Redford Barracks in July 2015. Picture: Bill Jamieson

Troops from The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, leave Glencourse barracks to begin their journey to Kabul to support training of the Afghan national army in August 2015. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Troops from The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, leave Glencourse barracks to begin their journey to Kabul to support training of the Afghan national army in August 2015. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Major General Mike Riddell-Webster, a former regular Army Officer who joined the reserves after retiring from the Army at the end of 2014, is installed as Governor of Edinburgh Castle in October 2015. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Major General Mike Riddell-Webster, a former regular Army Officer who joined the reserves after retiring from the Army at the end of 2014, is installed as Governor of Edinburgh Castle in October 2015. Picture: Ian Georgeson

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