|The Queen's Royal Hussars|
Cap Badge of The Queen's Royal Hussars
|Active||2 September 1993-|
|Part of||Royal Armoured Corps|
RHQ - London|
Regiment - Sennelager, Germany
|Nickname(s)||None currently used|
|Motto(s)||Mente et Manu, translated as "With Mind and Hand"|
Quick - Regimental Quick March of The Queen's Royal Hussars|
Slow - 3rd Hussars Slow March/ Litany of Loretto/The Garb of Old Gaul/March of the Scottish Archers
|Mascot(s)||Drum Horse (Alamein)|
|Colonel-in-Chief||HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, KG, KT, GBE|
|Brigadier Andrew Bellamy|
|Tactical Recognition Flash|
Maid of Warsaw|
from 7th Hussars
|Tartan||Saffron (Pipers kilts and capes)|
The Queen's Royal Hussars (The Queen's Own and Royal Irish) (QRH) is the senior United Kingdom light cavalry regiment. It was formed on 1 September 1993 from the amalgamation of The Queen's Own Hussars and The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars. The regiment traces its roots back to 1685 and during the past 320 years has been awarded 172 Battle Honours and 8 Victoria Crosses.
History[edit | edit source]
The Queen's Own Hussars, normally referred to by the abbreviation QOH, was a cavalry regiment of the British Army, formed from the amalgamation of 3rd The King's Own Hussars and the 7th Queen's Own Hussars at Candahar Barracks, Tidworth in 1958.
The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars, abbreviated as QRIH, was a cavalry regiment of the British Army formed from the amalgamation of the 4th Queen's Own Hussars and the 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars in Hohne, West Germany in 1958. After moving to Catterick in June 1995, the regiment, in January 1996, became the first to be deployed in Challenger 1 tanks to Bosnia with NATO's British-led Implementation Force IFOR. It spent its time as part of 2nd Canadian Multi National Brigade, and was awarded The Canadian Forces Unit Commendation - the first time that this had been awarded to a foreign unit, and the first overseas commendation received by a British unit since the Korean War. The following year, 1997, the regiment was deployed in the dismounted role to Northern Ireland. The regiment subsequently converted to Challenger 2 tanks, in which an independent tank squadron deployed to Kosovo in 2001, with the entire regiment deploying later that year in the dismounted role.
The regiment is currently based in Sennelager, Germany, where it is the armoured regiment for 20th Armoured Brigade, part of British Forces Germany. The regiment returned at the end of November 2006 from a successful deployment in Iraq on Operation Telic 8. In 2008 the Regiment deployed again to Iraq on OP TELIC XIII where is was engaged in various mentoring tasks with Iraqi forces in Basra City, Umm Qasr and Az Zubayr. As the final OP TELIC the QRH were intimately involved in the drawdown from the main British base and spent many hours escorting convoys to and from Kuwait. Whilst the majority of the Regiment were on OP TELIC a large Troop was deployed on OP HERRICK 9 where they worked with the Royal Marines as part of the Armoured Support Group in Viking armoured personnel carriers.
C Squadron recently trained with 5 RIFLES on Exercise BAVARIAN CHARGER, mounted on Challenger 2 tanks. The QRH Battlegroup, comprising sub-units from 5 RIFLES and 1 PWRR deployed on Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER 2 between July and August 2013.
The regiment will move to Tidworth, forming one of the Type 56 Tank regiments of the Reactive Force.
Victoria Cross[edit | edit source]
- James Champion
- Samuel Parkes
- Clement Walker Heneage
- George Hollis
- John Pearson
- Joseph Ward
- Cornet William Bankes 7th Queen's Own Hussars
- Major Charles Fraser 7th Queen's Own Hussars
Organization[edit | edit source]
The regiment is a Type 58 Challenger 2 tank regiment (i.e.: it is equipped with 58 Challenger 2 tanks), which are organised into four Sabre Squadrons.
In addition the regiment also fields a close reconnaissance troop mounted in eight FV107 Scimitars, and a large Headquarters Squadron, which supplies ammunition, fuel, and rations and includes specialist technicians, mechanics and artisans, as well as clerical and medical staff.
Recruiting Areas[edit | edit source]
- Northern Ireland
- West Midlands
Museums[edit | edit source]
The regiment has two museums in England:
- The Queen's Own Hussars Museum is located at Lord Leycester Hospital in Warwick.
- The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars Museum is located at The Redoubt Fortress in Eastbourne.
- The Blackshaw Museum is located in the Regimental Guard room of Athlone Barracks in Sennelager, Germany.
The Regimental Crest & Cap Badge[edit | edit source]
- The Regimental Crest is made up from the Angel Harp of the 8th Hussars and the Queen's Royal Irish Hussars, which is placed above the White Horse of Hanover of the 3rd Hussars and the Queen's Own Hussars. These are encircled by the Garter Belt, above which is placed the Queen's Crown.
- The Regimental Cap Badge is made up from the Angel Harp of the 8th Hussars and the Queen's Royal Irish Hussars, superimposed on the Regimental cypher of the Queen's Own Hussars, originally bestowed on the 7th Hussars in 1727; the whole is surmounted by the Queen's crown and a lion, with a scroll underneath giving the Regiment's title in blue and gold.
Privileges & traditions[edit | edit source]
In over 300 years of distinguished service the regiment has gained a number of unique privileges and traditions.
- Regimental song
I'm a soldier in the Queen's Army.
I'm a galloping Queen's Hussar.
I've sailed the ocean wide and blue.
I'm a chap who knows a thing or two.
Been in many a tight corner.
Shown the enemy who we are.
I can ride a horse.
Go on a spree, or sing a comic song.
And that denotes a Queen's Hussar.
- Regimental Colours
- Garter Blue: The primary colour of the regiment is garter blue. This dates from 1685 when The Queen Consort's Regiment of Dragoons, later the 3rd Hussars, wore the Queen's livery with Garter Blue feathered hats. It has been in continuous use ever since.
- Green: The use of green dates from 1748 when it was the facing colour of Princess Anne of Denmark's Regiment of Dragoons, later the 4th Hussars. It has an association with Ireland, which remains a recruiting area for the regiment. Officers and Senior Ranks wear green jumpers and all ranks wear berets. Officers can be distinguished by their distinctive tent hats (the only item of army headress worn without a cap badge other than with combat uniforms).
- Yellow: The traditional Light Cavalry colour is yellow, which has been used by all of the regiment's predecessors.
- Badges and Symbols
The White Horse of Hanover: Ranking second, after the Crown, among the regiment's military badges, it was bestowed by the first three King Georges to certain regiments for the their part in suppressing the Jacobites. It was first granted, as a special head-dress badge, by King George I to the 3rd King's Own Regiment of Dragoons in 1715 for their part in defeating James Francis Edward Stuart (The Old Pretender).
Crossbelts: At the Battle of Almenar in 1710 the 8th Dragoons pursued the Spanish Cavalry Corps and, equipping themselves with the crossbelts of the enemy, cut down the Spaniards with their own swords. The crossbelts were worn with distinction for many years, and the nickname 'St Georges Crossbelts' was given to the regiment. Although the crossbelt worn today is based on the original 4th Hussar pattern, the continuing tradition of titling the Regimental Journal 'The Crossbelts' is in recognition of this famous action, as is its use as the nickname for the regimental polo team.
The Maid of Warsaw: Every member of the regiment wears the Maid of Warsaw, the crest of the City of Warsaw, on the left sleeve of his No. 2 (Service) Dress. This honour was awarded to the 7th Hussars by the Commander of the Second Polish Corps in recognition of their valour in support of the Polish Forces during the Italian Campaign in World War II. Traditionally the original crest presented to the regiment is placed in front of the Commanding Officer on Dinner Nights.
The Fern Leaf: All vehicles in the regiment display the emblem of New Zealand, the Fern Leaf, to commemorate the association of the 3rd Hussars with the 2nd New Zealand Division at the Battle of El Alamein. This honour was granted by General Lord Freyberg VC.
Kettle Drums: By command of King George II the silver kettle drums captured by The King's Own Regiment of Dragoons, later the 3rd Hussars, at Dettingen are borne by a drum horse ridden by a Sergeant Kettledrummer - both being additional to the regimental establishment. The drums are always carried at the head of the regiment on ceremonial parades and are, uniquely amongst cavalry regiments, never covered by drum banners, the battle honours being engraved directly onto the sides of the drums. In 1772 when Lord Southampton commanded the regiment, his wife gave a silver collar to be worn by the Kettledrummer, which is still worn today when parading in full dress with the drums. The present drum horse is named Alamein and its nickname is Dudley.
- Other traditions
The Loyal Toast: After the Jacobite rebellion in 1745, all officers of the army were required to drink the health of the Sovereign in their mess after dinner as a token of loyalty to the King. The King, however, absolved the regiment from this duty, saying that their loyalty had always been beyond question, and gave the officers the privilege of never drinking the Loyal Toast in the Officers' Mess and of ignoring the National Anthem when it is played by the band after dinner. This privilege was reaffirmed by the Sovereign prior to the formation of the regiment in 1993.
Winston Churchill: Winston Churchill, who has been described as 'the greatest Hussar of them all', was commissioned into the 4th Hussars in 1895, and later became the Colonel-in-Chief of the regiment from 1941, until the 4th Queen's Own Hussars was amalgamated with the 8th Hussars in 1958, after which he became Colonel-in-Chief of the new regiment, Queen's Own Royal Irish Hussars remaining so until his death in 1965. In recognition of this, The Churchill Cup is awarded to the top-scoring troop in the regiment's annual gunnery competition. The Commanding Officer's tank is also named 'Churchill'.
The Regimental Pipes and Drums[edit | edit source]
The Pipes and Drums were inherited from the Queen's Royal Irish Hussars. First formed in Paderborn on the 17th March 1973 for St. Patrick's Day as a joint brain child of the then Commanding Officer Lt Col BR O'Rorke and Lord St Oswald, himself an Ex 8th Hussar and the RSM, WO1 William James (Jim) McLucas MBE who obtained as much as he could from the Royal Irish Rangers as well as organising fund raising activities and raffles to fund purchases of equipment as the regiment wasn't on army establishment for free supply. RSM McLucas managed to produce six pipers who performed for the first time on St Patrick's Day of that year. A subsequent posting to Cyprus for part of the emergent band prevented future development. This and a general disapproval of the concept by some senior officers meant that the band declined. An attempt by SNCOs to rejuvenate the band in 1982 failed. The regiment moved to Muenster and had access to instruction from the locally based Irish Guards pipes and drums but lack of support at senior level meant the attempt foundered leaving only two pipers properly clothed and able to parade. It wasn't until Lt Col Sir Charles Lowther Bt, took command in 1987 that a further effort was made. RSM McLucas (by now a major and quartermaster) had expressed the wish that the Pipes and drums could be reformed and Col Lowther agree and organised a plan. It is as a result of his efforts that a corps exists today and is on the establishment.
The pipe band originally consisted of just two pipers but no drums, the uniform was a saffron kilt with a green piper's jacket,and a Saffron Cloak, after two years the band grew by adding four drummers and was now in a position to carry out more challenging engagements.
By the end of the 1970s and the start of the 1980s the pipe band received its first Pipe Major, Pipe Major Jimmy Walker, which in turn helped to improve the musical talents within the pipe band. To perform at the Royal Tournament in London was one of the main driving focus's at the time. Sadly this was not achieved until 1996 Under Pipe Major Walker's Successor, Pipe Major David Johnson who joined the regiment and the Pipe Band from the Irish Guards in Munster in 1988.
Once the Pipe Band achieved its goal of playing at London the Military School of Piping in Scotland then started to use the Pipes and Drums more frequently thus helping the Pipe Band immensely because a young Trooper from the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards joined the Regiment and the Pipe Band in 1991 to help and encourage the younger members of the band. He Became the Pipe Major before being replaced in 2008 by the first true Queen's Royal Hussar Pipe Major, Nicolas Colwell.
Under Pipe Major Massie in 1999 the Pipe Band was requested to appear at the Royal Tournament and the Edinburgh Tattoo. Some changes were made to the dress and the Band then wore a Saffron Kilt with a green but gold braided Pipers jacket and a garter blue and green shawl with the White Horse of Hannover as a brooch, the drummers wearing traditional Hussars ceremonial dress.
Recent engagements have included the south of France and South Africa supporting the Army Sales team, Pipers are also being sent to Brazil and Korea.
All the soldiers currently serving in the Pipe Band are not just Pipers and Drummers but are also full crewmen of the regimental workhorse "the Challenger 2 Main Battle Tank".
There has been no formal adoption of pipe music by the regiment, but the pipe tunes have become very much a part of Regimental Parades, the following tunes have become part of the Regiment's Music.
- Killaloe Composed by Robert Martin in 1887 as part of the show "Miss Esmeralda".
- The Minstrel Boy The original words were composed by Thomas Moore, set to an old traditional Irish air originally named "The Moreen".
- Highland Cathedral A modern slow melody composed by M Korb for bagpipes, it is a haunting tune used as a slow march.
- St Patrick's Day Played by the Irish Pipes at the battle of Fontenoy in 1745, though it has long been a popular patriotic Irish song.
REGIMENTAL DAYS: The following are celebrated as battle honour days:
St Patrick's Day is also celebrated.
Alliances[edit | edit source]
- Canada - The Sherbrooke Hussars
- Canada - Royal Canadian Hussars
- Canada - 8th Canadian Hussars (Princess Louise's)
- Australia - 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment (Queensland Mounted Infantry)
- Australia - 3rd/9th Light Horse (South Australian Mounted Rifles)
- Australia - 4th/19th Prince of Wales Light Horse Regiment
- Australia - 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment
- New Zealand - Queen Alexandra's Mounted Rifles
- South Africa - Natal Mounted Rifles
- South Africa - Umvoti Mounted Rifles
- South Africa - The Light Horse Regiment
- Belgium - 2/4 Regiment Lansiers
- France - 7eme Regiment de Chasseurs
Affiliated Yeomanry[edit | edit source]
Order of precedence[edit | edit source]
The Royal Dragoon Guards
|Cavalry Order of Precedence||Succeeded by|
9th/12th Royal Lancers
(Prince of Wales's)
References[edit | edit source]
[edit | edit source]
- The Queen's Royal Hussars - British Army Website
- The Queen's Royal Hussars Regimental Association Website
- Eastbourne Redoubt Fortress Military Museum
- Information from Culture24
- 4th(Queen's Own )Hussars, 8th(King's Royal Irish) Hussars Victoria Crosses
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