The change from Volunteer Battalions to Territorial Army in 1908

The Volunteer Forces had been largely supported by their own funds and were self governed which resulted in variance up and down the country.

Lord Haldane, who was Minister for War, changed this situation by the creation of a Territorial Army.

Military Law was introduced and men received pay and allowance in similar fashion to regulars. Attendance at camp of at least 8 days a year was made compulsory.

New County Territorial Associations were formed who were responsible for clothing, equipment and building although the regular army was responsible for training.

The new Essex County Territorial Force Association was formed in 1908 to take up the responsibilities. The Earl of Warwick was the first President with Brigadier General R B Colvin CH as Chairman and Major General F F Johnson as Secretary.

In practice the new association built on the old VB with its bases and strength of 2241men. The men were given 6 months to decide if they wished to transfer to the Territorials or retire.

The new Headquarters was established at Epping Place which was the home of Brigade Major H W W Wood.

The 1st VB became the 4th Essex commanded by Lieut-Colonel J E Windus

The 2nd VB became the 5th Essex commanded by Colonel Percy Adams

The 3rd VB became the 6th Essex commanded by Colonel J B Ward

The 4th VB became the 7th Essex commanded by Colonel G T B Cobbett

Essex 6th remained at their old base at Cedars, West Ham.

The 4th Essex moved to Gordon Grounds, Ilford

The  5th Essex moved to a new building at Chelmsford

The 7th Essex moved to Walthamstow

By 1911 the new force had grown to 218 Officers and 8183 other ranks which was just 10% below the establishment.