Rather than replicate the good work done elsewhere, this page provides a number of links to Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) related sites for your convenience.
The Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) was an infantry regiment of the British Army which began duties in 1970. Raised through public appeal, newspaper and television advertisements, with the operational role of "defence of life or property in Northern Ireland against armed attack or sabotage" but significantly not including "crowd control or riot duties in cities". The UDR, along with a new police reserve, replaced the Ulster Special Constabulary ("B-Specials"). It was the largest infantry regiment in the British Army, formed with seven battalions plus another four added within two years.
It consisted mostly of part-time volunteers until 1976 when a full-time cadre was added. Recruiting from the local community at a time of intercommunal strife, it was accused of sectarianism and collusion with loyalist paramilitary organisations. The regiment was intended to be nonpartisan, and began with Catholic recruits accounting for 18% of its soldiers; however due to various circumstances, by the end of 1972, this dropped to around 3%
It is doubtful if any other unit of the British Army has ever come under the same sustained criticism as the UDR.
Uniquely in the British Army the regiment was on continuous active service throughout its 22 years of service. It was also the first infantry regiment of the British Army to fully incorporate women into its structure.
In 1992, the UDR was amalgamated with the Royal Irish Rangers to form the Royal Irish Regiment. In 2006, the regiment was retrospectively awarded the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross.
- The Regimental Association of The Ulster Defence Regiment - http://www.udrassociation.org/
- The UDR and R IRISH (HS) Aftercare Service website - http://www.aftercareservice.org
- Unofficial (but good) UDR site - http://www.udr.talktalk.net/. Has a good guest book with frequent users.
- Heritage society - http://militaryheritageni.co.ukNo longer available!
- Ministry of Defence historical page - MOD Site
- History of E Company 5th (Co Londonderry) Battalion The Ulster Defence Regiment - http://ecohcoy.tripod.com
- Wikipedia article on UDR - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ulster_Defence_Regiment