formation of a rifle corps at the General Post Office in London
was sanctioned by the War Office in February 1868. Designated as
the 49th Middlesex Rifle Volunteer Corps, the 49th consisted of
seven companies and was recruited from the minor staff of the Post
Office. At this time, senior members were already serving as part
of the 21st (Civil Service) Corps.
The 49th became the 24th in 1880 and the following year joined the
Rifle Brigade as one of its volunteer battalions. In 1882 a scheme
was approved for the formation from within the 24th of an Army Postal
Service. The idea of the new unit was for it to undertake all postal
duties connected with an army on active service overseas.
The Army Post Office Corps was formed and in 1882 joined the Expeditionary
Force in Egypt. The 24th were subsequently awarded the battle honour
'Egypt 1882', making the Post Office Rifles the only territorial
battalion to be thus honoured.
Members of the battalion also served in South Africa during the
Boer War. In 1908 the 24th became the 8th (City of London) Battalion,
the London Regiment, and as such fought throughout France and Belgium
during the First World War. In 1916 the 24th became part of the
Corps of the Rifle Brigade and in 1922 was amalgamated with the
7th London Regiment.