Frequently Asked Questions

What is light infantry?

How much does reenacting cost?

How much are the membership fees?

Can other members of my family get involved?

Is military experience necessary to join?

Where do you get your uniforms?

Can I join if I’m not from Southwestern Ontario?

Why do the men smell so bad?

What is Light Infantry?

Every battalion of 10 companies would have one company designated as a light company. Tactics in the early nineteenth century dictated that armies fought in lines firing mass vollies, but light infantry would form extended chains in front of the main line. These men would work in pairs to counter the enemy skirmishers, attempt to shoot officers or drummers (the communication network), and generally disrupt the enemy army. They also acted as scouts and screened the army when retreating. The light infantry were often the youngest and fastest members of the battalion, but they fought in the line too. As such, they were taught the standard infantry drill first and did not learn light infantry drill until it was perfected.

How much does reenacting cost?

Reenacting can be a very expensive hobby to join. For example, a Brown Bess musket (the most expensive part of your kit) could cost over $1000. That being said, once you have your kit, the costs are generally restricted to membership fees and costs of travelling to and from events.

How much are the membership fees?

In the UTMRS, membership fees are $35 a year for individuals taking the field, and $20 a year for those portraying civilians. Membership is due January 31st each year. There is a $5 per person late fee for dues paid after that date. Membership fees include insurance to cover members at reenactments.

Can other members of my family get involved?

Absolutely! Many members in the hobby reenact as a family with the men on the line with their wives portraying soldier’s wives or, occasionally, serving on the line as well. Children can be inexpensively outfitted as children of the period.

Is military experience necessary to join?

Military experience is not in any way necessary. The drill of the period is very different from that of today, so you’ll have to start again anyway. Some knowledge of safe handling of firearms is an assest, but that too can be taught by our NCO’s.

Where do you get your uniforms?

Generally members purchase most of their uniforms from the period sutlers that attend events. Many of them can be found on our Related Links page. Check with the unit before you buy anything, however. As we strive to accurately portray a unit in the British Army, uniformity is key. We would hate for you to buy something that you couldn’t wear as a member of our group. Uniforms can also be made if you or someone you know is adept at sewing. Many of the raw materials can be bought from the unit stores, so, again, check with unit before you buy.

Can I join if I’m not from Southwestern Ontario?

Although it would be difficult for you to join us at drills and meetings, you are welcome to simply join us at events. We already have members from across Ontario. If you contact us, however, we may be able to put you in touch with a group closer to you.

Why do the men smell so bad?

Sorry about that. The uniforms are very hot in the summer and the men sweat a lot. As well, when black powder burns, the residue it leaves is sulphur, hence the rotten-egg smell. When reenacting, members live in their tents for days. We’ll try to stand upwind, though.