Jump to content
The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Lancers ? - Identify Picture Please


chris1914
 Share

Recommended Posts

Can anyone identify regiment in this photo for me please. May be WW1 or earlier? It is somehow connected to my Great Grandfather Henry Leonard Billingham (Regimental number W2020) who was in RH & R Field Artillery in WW1. He was from Gloucester born about 1877. Thanks.post-118792-0-13289100-1418761301_thumb.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Definitely Lancers; not sure which, however. Not something I know lots about: can you close-up on the collar dogs and the helmet plates?

(I bet someone else comes along and tells us which regiment they are!)

Edit: I've just checked Dress Regulations 1900 and I'm wondering 21st (Empress of India's) Lancers, but it is a long shot.

Edited by Steven Broomfield
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Chris1914

Welcome to the forum.

As Steven states it will need a close up scan of the Collar badges and Lancer Cap Plates to enable a precise identification to be made.

Saying that, the Lance Corporal, standing next to the piled Lances, appears to be wearing bi-metal Collar badges bearing Prince of Wales feathers, rather than VRI as worn by the 21st (Empress of India's) Lancers. Accordingly, I think these men are from the 12th (Prince of Wales's Royal) Lancers.

Unfortunately, I cannot gain access to any of my uniform related books because I think that the crimped Lancer Cap Plumes are also diagnostic.

Great photograph with some interesting proficiency badges being worn!

Sepoy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

21st

12th had red plumes and red facings during this period. The only contenders are 5th, 9th, 12th, 17th and 21st. The only real contenders with a white plume were the 17th or 21st Lancers. The off-white facing (read French grey) and collar badge are the obvious clinchers in my view. The facings are French Grey which is a very light coloured grey. If they were 17th Lancers (the only other contender) the facing would be white. For 1912 according to illustrations in Simkin

5th... Red facings , black plume.

9th...Red facings, black and white plumes

12th...Red facings, red plume.

16th .. Blue facing, black plume

17th... White facing white plume

21st...French Grey facing, white plume

1. Richard Simkin's "Uniforms of the British Army: The Cavalry Regiments"

2. Kipling & King.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Almost certain that these are indeed 21st Lancers as suggested by Steven.

The collars appear to have the VRI monogram in the centre, but an enlargement of one would confirm this or otherwise.

Robert

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was going on the colour of the plume and the colour of the plastron front, and 21st were the only ones which ticked the requisite boxes.

I forgot to mention - it's a smashing photo!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's a great photograph, any chance we can see the complete picture (or maybe this is all you have Chris). I see that 4 of the 7 have the crossed rifles badge. Cavalry took shooting seriously.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm assuming it dates to some point between the South African War and the Great War. Lack of medals despite a Good Conduct Badge for the Lance Corporal might suggest later rather than earlier, and the marksman badges also, possibly, given the later emphasis on the shooting.

The 21st were in India for the duration of the GW, but not sure when they went there (I can check this evening). Is there any form of photographer's identification? Was the picture taken in UK or overseas?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The 21st Lancers were at Canterbury in 1909 and I think went to India in 1910. Of course having been formed in 1897 from the 21st Hussars they took part in the Sudan campaign where they had their moment of glory at Omdurman. They took no part in the Boer War and were stationed in India on the North-West Frontier during WW1, where they again saw action at Shabkadar on 5th September,1915. For this action they were awarded the 1914/15 Star Trio. A number of 21st officers and men were attached to various units during WW1 and served mainly on the western front. I believe that one squadron was detached and served in France towards the end of the war.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A number of 21st officers and men were attached to various units during WW1 and served mainly on the western front. I believe that one squadron was detached and served in France towards the end of the war.

A service squadron was part of the XIV Corps Cavalry between June 1916 and Aug 1917 in France. However, the Great War battle honours are NW Frontier India 1915, '16. I assume this is based on the requirement for the HQ and at least 50% of a unit to be present to qualify for a battle honour. MG

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hope the OP pops back: he was last here in time to see my first post and then has not returned. he's missed a lot!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Many thanks to all answers. That answers my question. Amazing amount of knowledge out there. I will post a close-up of badges in a couple of days and will try to post the full picture which is good quality and someone may even recognise the barracks where it was taken (but I think I have to reduce resolution/quality to upload it?) . Thanks again.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd like that. If it's easier, host it on something like Photobucket or Flickr and post a link. That was you can get access to the picture in top quality.

You could try contacting the museum, who might be interested in the picture, and might also help with location. Link here: http://www.qrlnymuseum.co.uk/1721l.htm

It really is a cracking photo.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lovely.

The chap at the back is in a different form of dress: the sort worn around barracks on duty.

I'm wondering (long shot) if it's Hounslow. I've seen photos of the 10th and 11th Hussars there and it looks similar, but then again, most UK cavalry barracks were pretty similar.

As for date, not sure, I'm afraid.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Definitely 21st Lancers, it is possible to see the VRI above the stripes on the two Sgts either side of the officer. These two NCO's appear to be wearing a single medal which is a QSA, so these are not original 21st men but have come from another cavalry regiment.

I cannot identify the officer, a Lieutenant?, with any certainty but the photo must be post Boer War and pre WW1, he wears the 21st Lancers collar badges but no medal ribbons so cannot have been with the regiment in the Sudan.

The location is possibly Canterbury--but only a guess. Dated probably early 1900's possibly 1908 ish? What a superb photo of a Troop? I assume, circa 30 men including an officer and NCO's. Brilliant, thanks for sharing this Chris.

Robert

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Personally, it's jolly close to being my pick for photograph of the year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Steven, Robert and John

Thanks for your recent information. All, here is a link to same photo but detail of the Collars and Medals if any one is interested and has any further comments.

http://i1376.photobucket.com/albums/ah26/chrisphotobucket8/MedalsLancers_zps27ee951e.jpg

Many thanks Chris

The Sergeant is clearly wearing a 21st Lancers VRI arm badge above his stripes. He is also wearing a Queen's South Africa Medal with clasps, together with a King's South Africa Medal with clasps. The KSA medal looks a little odd due to it laying against a button, together with the ends of his cap lines hanging over the medal.

Sepoy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sepoy, Thanks for the information. I have sent a link of the photo to the curator of the Queens Royal Lancers Museum in case they are interested. - of course they may have many of these?

Chris

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 years later...

In relation to this old thread, does anybody recognise these barracks as Aldershot? It comes from a photo booklet of 21st lancers almost certainly dated 1906. 

Cheers 

Ben 

20171004_074943.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

John - welcome to the Forum.

 

It might be worth re-posting this in a new thread with an appropriate title as it's possible members might not look at an old thread.

 

It may well be Aldershot, but I'm sure someone can say for certain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In 1905 according to Harts Army list the 21st Lancers was based in Hounslow..Click see top let of image.

in 1906 ditto... Click 

In 1907 ditto...Click

 

If you are sure this is 1906 and sure they are Lancers and sure it is Aldershot, it would be the 5th (Royal Irish) Lancers. In 1906 the dispositions of the Lancers regiments were as follows:

 

5th Lancers - Aldershot

9th Lancers - Rawalpindi

12th Lancers  - Umballa

16th Lancers - Colchester

17th Lancers - Edinburgh

21st Lancers - Hounslow

 

Other line cavalry in Aldershot in 1906 were;

1st King's Dragoon Guards

8th (The King's Royal Irish) Hussars

 

The title of the photos suggests it is a Pom Pom gun mounted on a carriage which is a fairly unusual thing.

 

Edited by Guest
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for getting back. I'm sure it's the 21sts because the booklet comes from an ancestor who served 21 years with them. He was one of their detachment who tried to extracate General Gordon from Khartoum in the 1880's. I have no idea where this photo was taken but  all of them look to be from the same place. Ive enclosed the front of the booklet. The date comes from '21st lancers 1906'  being scrawled on some anvils on a photo of the blacksmiths.

Cheers 

20171004_074420.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...