Cpl Barker, RB, in a Ferret scout car

This archive photograph is of Corporal Baker of 1st Battalion, The Rifle Brigade, in a Ferret scout car in Malaya in 1957.

Corporal Baker in command of a Ferret scout car

Corporal Baker, 1 RB, in command of a Ferret scout car at Wardieburn Camp.


The 1st Battalion, with A, B, C, I and S Companies were engaged in a counter-insurgency campaign against communist terrorists in the Johore-Malacca region of Malaya under the overall title of Operation COBBLE.

During their tour of duty the Battalion accounted for over twenty communist terrorists killed in action on operations.

After the tour was over, it was written by a senior member of the British administration:

Of all the Security Forces who, at different times, have operated in the area [and here he lists nine units) – The Rifle Brigade was far and away the best. Their operations were more carefully planned; they were the better led; they shot straight; they patrolled more quietly and they hung on more tenaciously than anyone else.’

This is high praise indeed, and a standard The Rifles are intent on emulating in today’s, somewhat more complicated, 21st century operational environment across the world.