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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

First TA Unit in action in 1914


Jerrymurland
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I always thought it was the London Scottish on 31st October 1914 at Messines - now it turns out it might have been the Northumberland hussars on 24th October at Reutel - 300 casualties and the CO killed. Any Northumberland Hussars experts about to verify this with the WD?

Jerry

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Without doing any checking I think the Northumberland Hussars were given some sort of escourt duty, whilst the London Scottish were sent into the line. No doubt others will give you more detail

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Jerry

According to SDGW the Northumberland Hussars had one KIA on the 25/10/14 and one DOW.

I have always thought that the Hussars were the first TA unit in action.

Sean

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Discussion of something similar took place a few years ago. I don't think there is any doubt that the London Scottish were not the first territorials to see action. I can't remember which unit was first involved but it only involved a very few men, a patrol seems to ring a bell. Acording to Wikipedia, the Northumberland Hussars were only second and third line units and there is no mention of any engagements. I would have thought that such an action would have got some mention. I think the London Scottish would claim to be the first battalion to see action, even then they were not all there, about half of E company being missing. The Oxfordshire hussars went into action the following day, supported by the remnants of the London Scottish that had managed to reassemble though probably more than half were still scattered.

Doug

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Some escort duty!! 300 casualties!

Jerry

300 or 2?

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But hand it to the London Jocks: we had the better publicists.

I believe forum member pmaasz (I hope I spelt that right) would claim the Oxfordshire Hussars. He pulled me up on it (correctly) a while back. Can't remember the thread, though, I'm afraid.

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Steven:

You did (spell it right) and I did ("Pick you up")! Both the Oxfordshire Hussars and the London Scottish were in action on the same day and both might reasonably claim to be the first Territorial unit to do so, I know that is always claimed within our mob. IF and I repeat IF a distinction needs to be drawn the London Scottish were the first TF infantry unit in action and the Oxfordshire Hussars were the first TF yeomanry regiment in action, but I have been unable to determine exactly the time of day of either from their unit histories. Quite apart from that, what is meant by 'in action' ? Firing on the enemy? Being exposed to enemy fire? Come on, let's open the debate again. I'm quite looking forward to the verbal blood that will fly around!

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Well, we had the more dashing uniforms. ;)

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Probably the knees that put that Prussian Guard off their stroke at Messines?

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Mr Broomfield imposes views of his knees at most inappropriate times - he is an ex London Jock.

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I resent that. My knees are almost never inappropriate.

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May be for you but not for the rest of us.......................

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If being in action includes 'being exposed to enemy fire' then surely the Northumberland Hussars were the first TA unit in action as they had a KIA on the 25th October.

Sean

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Despite the somewhat humorous exchanges this question of the Northumberland Hussars possibly being in action on 25/10/14 is important, so I intend to post a question under the NH heading in the hope that it will draw out the experts and settle the issue.

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