The 16th Close Support Medical Regiment was formed in 1999 to provide dedicated medical support to the 16th Air Assault Brigade. The unit was formed by the amalgamation of the 19th Airmobile Field Ambulance and the 23rd Parachute Field Ambulance and the unit is trained in air assault operations so can parachute with combat troops if required. Being attached to an air assault brigade, the unknit has picked up many of the traditions and insignia of airborne troops. Claret and Cambridge blue have been the regimental colours for the Parachute Regiment since the Second World War and other units with an airborne element such as the 16th Close Support Medical Regiment adopted these colours as well, as seen here is a unit sports shirt:
The shirt has a large ‘16’ on the back for the unit, suggesting that it was produced for members of the unit to buy rather than for actual use by a team on the sports field:
The front of the shirt has an embroidered badge for the unit featuring the usual medical caduceus with wings and an eagle to reflect the airborne nature of the unit:
Where a sponsor would normally be displayed on the front of the shirt are the words ‘Med Regt’:
The unit continues to serve as part of the British Army to this day and like most units has its own page on the Army’s website which explains its current role and structure:
16 Medical Regiment provides dedicated medical support to 16 Air Assault Brigade and will be called upon to support the complete spectrum of air assault operations. Most recently Unit personnel have deployed to the Falkland Islands to support the fight against Coronavirus.
Two regular Air Assault Medical Surgical Groups, each of which can provide Role 2 medical support and resuscitative surgery. In addition to the regular squadrons, an Army Reserve squadron is permanently part of the Regiment, and is based on London, Cardiff, Glasgow and Nottingham. The Army Reserve squadron is fully integrated within the Regiment and members deploy regularly on operations and exercises in support of the Brigade. The majority of the professionals and skills of the Army Medical Services can be found within the Regiment. Clinical specialists, such as surgeons and anesthetists have the opportunity to divide their work between the Regiment and the Second Care Agency.