- King Edward's Horse during the Great War -
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King Edward's Horse
King Edward's Horse (Oversea Dominions Regiment) was an Imperial Service unit of the Territorial Force until 1912 when it became part of the Special Reserve. It was based at the Duke of York's Headquarters, Kings Road, Chelsea and was made up of Colonial Subjects living in London, organised into four Squadrons; A (British Asian) Squadron, B (Canadian) Squadron, C (Australiasian) Squadron and D (South African) Squadron.
A train carrying some/all of the 1st Battalian from Italy to the western front was rammed in the rear by another train at the Frejus tunnel. A French Railway signalman's error. My Gt Uncle was killed as he was travelling in the rear carriage, I have eye-witness accounts which were sent to my Gt Grandmother via the red cross. He was buried nearby but later re-interred near Lyon as the cemetery began to subside.
25th Nov 1914 Funeral
8th May 1915 Battle of Aubers Ridge Operation Orders for Battle of Aubers Ridge 9th May 1915
Secret London Div Artillery Operation Orders No 2 8th May 1915
Reference Maps 1/40000, 1/10000.
(a)1st Army will advance tomorrow with the objective of breaking through the enemy's line and gaining La Bassee-Lille Road between La Bassee and Fournes. It's further advance will be directed on the line Bauvin-Don
(b) 1st Corps is to attack from Rue Du Bois and advance on Rue Du Marais -Illies, maintaining its right flank at Givenchy & Cuinchy.
(c) The 1st Div, is to attack from it's breastworks in front of Rue Du Bois. It's first objectives are Hostile trenches P.8-P.10, the road junction P.15 and the road thence to La Tourelle. It's subsequent advance is to be directed on Rue Du Marais - Lorgies, a defensive flank being organised from the Orchard (P.4) by La Quinque Rue to Rue Du Marais. The artillery supporting the attack of the 1st Div. is to complete such registration as may be necessary by 0500 at which hour the preliminary bombardment is to commence and continue up to the time of the Infantry assault in accordance with the following time table. 0500 to 0510 wire cutting and bombardment of hostile strong points. 0510 to 0540 wire cutting and bombardment of the first objective. 0540 infantry assault. Artillery to increase their range.
(d) The 2nd Div. (less 4th (Guards Bde) with motor machine battery attached is to be in Corps reserve in the area Loisne-Le Touret-Le Hamel in readiness to continue the advance.
Intentions: The GOC. intends to hold the present defensive line Cuinchy-Chololai, Menier Corner (S.15) opening a vigorous fire attack along the entire front, until called upon to relieve the infantry of the 1st Div. at the Orchard (F.4.), La Quinque Rue and Rue Du Marais when these points have been secured and further to take advantage of any weakening of the enemy about the Rue D’Oovert to occupy that locality.
(a) All troops are to be warned that the 1st Div. attack will come across their front lines left to right and that the right of their attack, as also any captured points, will be marked by a red flare with white vertical bar in centre. Troops in the 2nd Div. will carry a yellow flag. Troops of London Division will be marked by a round disc with a black cross (disc 2ft in diameter). Should our Infantry come under fire of our own artillery, they will make their identity known by raising their cups on the points of their bayonets.
(b) Infantry. The 4th (Guards), 4th Lon Infantry (less 8th Battalion. Lon Regt), 6th Lon Infantry (less 23rd Battalion Lon Regt) Brigades will maintain their positions. The 6th Lon Infantry Brigade however, will be prepared on the receipt of orders to relieve the troops of the 1st Div. at the points mentioned in para 2 after these points have been occupied and made good by those troops.
All assault troops will be in position by 0400. (c) At 0540 a vigorous fire attack with burst of rifle and machine gun fire, will be opened along the whole front, the object being to prevent the enemy being withdrawn from our front to operate against the 1st Div. and to inflict loses on reinforcements they may bring up to oppose the right of that Division. The heaviest possible fire will be brought to bear on any favourable target which may be offered.
(d) Artillery fire will be directed as per time table already issued. NB. artillery in London Divisional area opens fire at 0445.
(e) Engineers. The 1st East Anglian Field Coy. RE. is attached to the 4th (Guards) Brigade: 1 section 3rd London Field. Coy. RE. to the 4th London Infantry Brigade; 2 section of the 4th London Field Coy. RE. to the 8th London Infantry Brigade. Remains of the Royal Engineers are placed at the CREs disposal to carry out tasks already allotted. The 4th and 6th Inf Brigade will each be prepared to detail a company as working party when called for by the CRE.
Wagon Lines and Ammunition Columns: Horses of the Wagon Lines and Amm Cols. not in reserve are to be harnessed and saddled from 0500 9th May but not hooked in.
Reserve The Divional Reserve constituted as follows, will be in position by 0445 9th May.
(a) Divisional Mounted troops (Squadron King Edwards Horse less two troops and London Cyclists less two platoons) under Major Herron will be under cover at Beuvry.
(b) 8th Battalion London Reg at Annewuin under cover. Headquarters at Cross Roads (F.29.b) In case of sudden emergency this Battalion may be employed by GOC. 4th (Guards) Brigade to support the defense of the right flank.
(c) 23rd Battalion the London Regiment under cover at Le Preop. Headquarters at Canal Bridge (F.10.c) Medical. Divisional Collecting Station will be at Beuvry (F.14.a.5.b). The existing dressing station will be maintained
Supply. Every man to carry the currents day’s ration and iron ration. (d) Supply Sections of Train to rendezvous at Refilling Point by 0600 9th May
Communication: From 0300 9th May all wires are reserved for operations purposes. All administrative messages will be sent by despatch rider, as opportunity offers. Reports to Div Hq Marche Au Paulets, Bethune
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2nd Lt. Norman Lindley Watt (d.27th July 1917)Norman Lindley Watt was a Rhodes Scholar at Pembroke College, Oxford, as was his younger brother Bill. He was born in the Orange Free State at the town of Lindley. Their father, an Irish doctor, had been a Boer Medical Officer in the Boer War, including the siege of Ladysmith. Medical officers were non-combatant but he had been captured by the British. Norman Watt, like many Southern Hemisphere soldiers, joined King Edward's Horse, and then later transferred to the Royal Flying Corps, as did his brother. Norman was killed in July 1917; he is remembered by inscriptions in Rhodes Hall and in St. Columba's church in Oxford. Bill survived the War although he was badly wounded. Many mementoes of Norman Watt have been kept by his sister, Fay and her family.Euan Nisbet
Tpr. Stanley Brookes Hunt King Edward's HorseMy grandfather was Stanley Brookes Hunt 1898-1955, my Dad has a spoon engraved with Trooper S B Hunt 2KEH think it had marksman on. Grandad died just after I was born in 1955, he never spoke much about his WW1 service. We believed he was injured and also went to Ireland where he was the only soldier to come out of a hospital ward alive. We haven't found his medal card or any records so far. Dad doesn't have any medals.Alison Smith
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