The museum shows how the musket has evolved into the present day SA80, carried by the Poor Bloody Infantry (PBI) in every campaign the Regiment has served. From accuracy of just a few yards to rifles capable of hitting targets up to 1000 yards away soldiers learned to aim, fire and strike the enemy.
The bayonet was used extensively during the First and Second World Wars when hand-to-hand fighting was much more common than it is today. However, in 2012, in Afghanistan, Sean Jones a 25-year old PWRR corporal, finding his section under intensive fire form enemy positions just 80 yards away, ordered his men to fix bayonets “I shouted ‘follow me’ and we went for it”. The speed, aggression and audacity of his response caused the enemy to fall back in disarray. For his leadership and action, Cpl Jones was awarded the Military Cross.
As well as rifles on display, you can see Mortars and British and German Machine Guns and Pistols. Pride of place is a pair of Maxim Medium Machine Guns of the 1st Hampshire hidden in 1914 by a brave French farmer to prevent their capture; these guns were returned to the Regiment in 1919 and have been on display in the Museum ever since.
These weapons are the tools of the trade of ‘Infantrymen’.