SADFO 181/61 - Inception and Allocation of units of the Permanent Force, was issued by Commandant-General P.H. Grobbelaar on 28 November 1961, leading to the inception of 3 SA Infantry Battalion on 01 January 1962. On 17 January 1962 the newly appointed Officer Commanding, commandant J.J. Wahl, and personnel gathered at Auckland Park where the purpose, training and other commitments of the unit were explained. The housing arrangements and facilities at Lenz were also discussed. After thorough deliberation it was decided that the new base would have its headquarters at Lenz.
The unit was to train National Servicemen as infantry soldiers. The first intake of 200 members arrived at Lenz on 29 March 1962 with quarterly intakes thereafter.
3 SA Infantry Battalion moved to Potchefstroom on 05 December 1968 with Commandant B.A. Ferreira as the new Commanding Officer.
During 1970, 3 SA Infantry Battalion was transformed into a force-in-being when the unit was given operational status - an additional responsibility. Two infantry Battalions were organized under the command of one Commanding Officer. National service intakes now took place biannually, in January and July. This resulted in very large intakes. From January 1969 to January 1971 over 3 000 national servicemen passed through the unit. Training was mainly focused on urban counter-insurgency operations.
3 SA Infantry Battalion received its colours from Commandant-General R.C. Hiemstra on 17 April 1971.
The name of the unit was changed from 3 South AFrican Infantry Battalion to 3 South African Infantry Training Unit in 1984. Colonel J. Coetzer was the Commanding Officer and Warrant Officer Class 1 I.D.J. Oosthuizen the RSM. The name changed back to Infantry Battalion in 1989.
In March 1987 the Chief of the Army instructed that companies of the State President's unit complete the last six months of their training at 3 SA Infantry Training Unit, to be deployed in operations. The role of the unit changed temporarily from the training of National Servicemen to training Citizen Force members in 1987.
The unit received the Freedom of the City of Potchefstroom on 27 May 1988. A parade was formed at the city hall where the scroll was received. A march-past follows through the streets of the town after which guests of honor and senior officers attended a luncheon at the city hall.