The 67th return to England after 21 years and authorisation to carry the Royal Bengal Tiger on the Regimental Colours, 1826

After the capture of Assighur the 67th moved to Mallygaom where it remained for 18 months, part of a substantial British force tasked with keeping control of Mahratta territories annexed by the East India Company. Losses, mainly due to sickness, were heavy during this period. They included the veteran Major Benjafield – an Ensign of 1794 – who died in June 1819.

In February 1826, after spells in Sholapore and Poona, the regiment was sent to Rangoon to reinforce British troops engaged in the Burmese war. However, the war ended shortly before the regiment arrived at the end of March and it promptly returned to India, but not before the unhealthy climate had claimed the lives of three officers and 40 men.

On June 9 1826, the 67th Foot returned to England after 21 years in India. However, 230 of its 550 other ranks elected to take the handsome bounty on offer and stayed on. Of these more than 100 went to the 44th and it is possible that several went on to serve with that regiment in Afghanistan and to perish in the retreat from Kabul. Another 60 went into the service of the East India Company so that barely 250 men actually returned home. No officer who had gone out in 1805 returned with the regiment, but the ranks did contain a few real veterans who may have served through the 21 years in India.

The 67th’s services in India were commemorated by the announcement on December 26 1826 that its Colours and ‘other appointments’ were to bear the figure of the Royal Bengal Tiger with the word ‘India’. Over the ensuing 175 years, the tiger was to become synonymous with the Royal Hampshire Regiment – the ‘Hampshire Tigers’ – and later the Princess of Wales Regiment, into which the Hampshires were absorbed in 1991.