10 June 2014

Berkshire Yeomanry 1908-1914

This post will look at numbering in the Berkshire Yeomanry between 1908 and 1914.

The Berkshire Yeomanry did not start numbering from 1 in 1908 but rather continued with the numbering sequence which it had used when it was the Imperial Berkshire Yeomanry. Thus 1054 Albert Charles Butler who joined the Berkshire Yeomanry on 13th April 1908 had originally been issued with this number when he joined the Imperial Berkshire Yeomanry on April 9th 1906. Any other men serving in this regiment who have numbers lower than this would also have been Imperial Yeomanry volunteers and would have joined up before Albert .

By 1914 the regiment's disposition was as follows:

Headquarters: Yeomanry House, Castle Hill, Reading
A Squadron: Windsor, with drill stations at Maidenhead and Wokingham
B Squadron: Reading, with a drill station at Wallingford
C Squadron: Newbury, with drill stations at Hungerford and Lambourn
D Squadron: Wantage, with drill stations at Abingdon, Faringdon and Didcot

The regiment formed part of the 2nd South Midland Brigade.

1382 joined on 22nd January 1909
1526 joined on 24th January 1910
1570 joined on 26th January 1911
1709 joined on 3rd April 1912
1802 joined on 12th April 1913
1852 joined on 19th February 1914
1952 joined on 10th August 1914
2160 joined on 16th September 1914
2346 joined on 6th October 1914
2431 joined on 23rd November 1914
2453 joined on 7th December 1914

A 2/1st regiment was formed in September 1914 as a second-line formation to train and supply men to the 1/1st regiment and later, in 1915, a 3/1st unit was also formed. All three units shared the same number sequence.

Image courtesy of the Flags Forum.

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Andrew French said...

Hi Paul an interesting post
I too have made some analysis of Berks Yeomanry numbers

In the renumbering of 1917 the 1/1st were allocated by the numbers by the Depot 70001 (to WO1 (RSM) HH Haines) onwards while the 2/1st started with higher numbers

The 3/1st being part of the new
6th RCR and were blest with their numbering system - some five figure some six-figure, some with GS or D prefixes others with none at all. I've yet to puzzle it out.

Finally where did you get the prewar ORBAT ? I have not seen the Wallingford drill station mentioned as being under B Sqdn (which it was)

Andrew French
Asst Hon Curator
Berks Yeomanry Museum

Paul Nixon said...


Thank you for your comment (and I have amended Wallingham - silly typo - to Wallingford). That information comes from the annual army returns for the TF which Ray Westlake re-published in his very useful little book, "The Territorial Force 1914" which was published in 1988.

I've not made a study of the five digit numbers and so you information is helpful. The Berkshire Yeomanry was later affiliated to the Corps of Dragoons and so I suspect the D/ represents "Dragoons" whilst the GS/ is "General Service".


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