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Unit History: Cheshire Regiment

Cheshire Regiment
The Regiment was formed following the Glorious Revolution of 1688; when Prince William of Orange deposed King James II to become King William III.  In 1689 James II raised an army in Ireland in an attempt to re-take the English throne.  The Regiment was formed by Henry Howard, 7th Duke of Norfolk as the ‘Duke of Norfolk's Regiment of Foot’, in Cheshire which was particularly vulnerable to attack from these forces and went onto defeat James II’s forces at the Battle of Boyne and Aughrim in 1691.
 
After several years on garrison duties in Ireland the Regiment sailed to Jamaica in 1702 and remained there for 12 years, in combat against the native population and the French.  It then moved to Minorca in 1726 and remained there for 22 years.  However a detachment was present at the Battle of Dettingen (1743) during the Austrian War of Succession (1740–48), defending the King from being captured by the French, for which the Regiment was awarded the honour of wearing an oak leaf when parading for Royalty.
 
In 1751 the Regimental naming system was simplified from being named after the current colonel to ranked numbers of seniority becoming, The 22nd Regiment of Foot.  The Seven Years War (1754–1763) was the result of British North American colonies expanding into French claimed territories.  In 1758 the Regiment was deployed to North America as part of Lord Amhest’s expedition and captured the Fortress of Louisberg in French Canada and went on to take part in General Wolfe’s victory over the French at Quebec.  The Regiment was also part of the force which captured the Island of Martinique and the siege and capture of Havana, which captured one of the most important harbours in the Spanish West Indies.
 
After a period of garrison duties in England and Ireland the 22nd returned to North America during the American War of Independence (1775–1783).  A detachment fought at Philadelphia (1777) and during the Southern Campaign until it surrendered at Yorktown.  The rest of the Regiment fought at the Battle of Bunker Hill, the New York and New Jersey Campaigns, the Battle of Rhode Island and the First Battle of Springfield (1780).
 
In 1782 all British Regiments without Royal titles were assigned a county title in order to aid recruitment, therefore the Regiment became the 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment of Foot.  The Regiment returned to the West Indies in 1793 during the French Revolutionary War (1792–1802) to once again capture the Islands of Martinique, St Lucia, Guadeloupe and St Domingo from the French.  It then went on to serve in South Africa and India fighting at the assault on Bhurtpore (1805) and took part in the occupation of Mauritius, remaining garrisoned there until 1819.  The Regiment returned to India during the Second Sikh War (1848–1849) fighting at the Battles of Meeanee, Hyderabad and Scinde.
 
In 1881 The Childers Reforms restructured the British army infantry Regiments into a network of multi-battalion Regiments of two regular and two militia battalions.  The 22nd avoided amalgamation with any other Regiment but ranked numbers were dropped and the Regiment was re-titled The Cheshire Regiment.  The Regiment then went on to serve in Burma (1887-1891), during The Second Boer War (1899–1902) and two World Wars.
 
The British infantry was once again restructured in 2004 and the Cheshire Regiment was amalgamated with the Staffordshire and Worcestershire & Sherwood Regiments to form the Mercian Regiment.

Cheshire Regiment during WW1

The Regiment raised 38 Battalions and awarded 75 Battle Honours and 2 Victoria Crosses losing 8,413 men during the course of the First World War.

1st Battalion
04.08.1914 Stationed at Londonderry as part of the 15th Brigade of the 5th Division.
16.08.1914 Mobilised for war and landed at Havre and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1914
The Battle of Mons and subsequent retreat, The Battle of Le Cateau and the Affair of Crepy-en-Valois, The Battle of the Marne, The Battle of the Aisne, The Battles of La Bassee and Messines 1914, The First Battle of Ypres.
1915
The Second Battle of Ypres and the Capture of Hill 60.
1916
The Attacks on High Wood, The Battle of Guillemont, The Battle of Flers-Courcelette, The Battle of Morval, The Battle of Le Transloy.
1917
The Battle of Vimy, The Attack on La Coulotte, The Third Battle of the Scarpe, The Capture of Oppy Wood, The Battle of Polygon Wood, The Battle of Broodseinde, The Battle of Poelcapelle, The Second Battle of Passchendaele.
Dec 1917 Deployed to Italy strengthen Italian resistance after a recent disaster at the Battle of Caporetto and the Division positioned along the River Piave.
April 1918 Returned to France;
The Battle of Hazebrouck, Defence of Nieppe Forest, The Battle of Albert, The Battle of Bapaume, The Battle of Drocourt-Queant, The Battle of the Epehy, The Battle of the Canal du Nord, The pursuit to the Selle, The Battle of the Selle.
11.11.1918 Ended the war near Le Quesnoy, France.

2nd Battalion
04.08.1914 Stationed at Jubbulpore, India.
24.12.1914 Returned to England arriving at Devonport, Plymouth joining the 84th Brigade of the 28th Division and then moved to Winchester.
17.01.1915 Mobilised for war landing at Havre and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1915
The Second Battle of Ypres, The Battle of Loos.
Oct 1915 Deployed to Egypt and then Salonika and engaged in various actions against the Bulgarian Army including;
1916
The occupation of Mazirko, The capture of Barakli Jum'a.
1917
The capture of Ferdie and Essex Trenches (near Barakli Jum'a), The capture of Barakli and Kumli.
1918
The Battle of Doiran, The pursuit to the Strumica valley.
30.09.1918 Ended the war north of Lake Doiran, Macedonia.

3rd (Reserve) Battalion
04.08.1914 Stationed at Chester and then move to Birkenhead as part of the Mersey Defences.
Dec 1917 Moved to Newcastle-on-Tyne.
May 1918 Moved to Seaton Carew, Hartlepool.
Sept 1918 Moved to west Hartlepool where it remained.

1/4th Battalion Territorial Force
04.08.1914 Stationed at Birkenhead as part of the Cheshire brigade of the Welsh Division and then moved to Shrewsbury and Church Stretton and then Northampton and then Cambridge.
May 1915 Moved to Bedford where the formation became the 159th Brigade of the 53rd Division.
July 1915 Embarked for Gallipoli from Devonport, Plymouth via Alexandria.
09.08.1915 Landed at Gallipoli and engaged in various actions against the Turkish Army.
Dec 1915 Evacuated from Gallipoli to Egypt due to severe casualties from combat, disease and harsh weather (The Division was reduced to just 15% of its full strength with 162 officers and 2428 men remaining).
31.05.1918 Left the 53rd Division and deployed to France via Alexandria & Taranto.
01.07.1918 Joined the 102nd Brigade of the 34th Division which engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
The Battle of the Soissonais and of the Ourcq, The capture of Baigneux Ridge, The Battle of Ypres, The Battle of Courtrai, The action of Ooteghem, The action of Tieghem.
11.11.1918 Ended the war west of Courtrai, Belgium.

1/5th (Earl of Chester’s) Battalion Territorial Force
04.08.1914 Stationed at Volunteer Street, Chester as part of the Cheshire Brigade of the Welsh Division.
Aug 1914 Moved to Shrewsbury and then Northampton and then Cambridge.
Feb 1915 Mobilised for war leaving the Welsh Division and landing at Havre.
19.02.1915 Joined the 14th Brigade of the 5th Division and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1914
The Battle of Mons and subsequent retreat, The Battle of Le Cateau and the Affair of Crepy-en-Valois, The Battle of the Marne, The Battle of the Aisne, The Battles of La Bassee and Messines 1914, The First Battle of Ypres.
29.11.1915 Became Pioneer Battalion of the 5th Division.
13.02.1916 Transferred to the 56th Division as a Pioneer Battalion;
1916
The diversionary attack at Gommecourt, The Battle of Ginchy, The Battle of Flers-Courcelette, The Battle of Morval, The Battle of the Transloy Ridges.
1917
The German retreat to the Hindenburg Line, The First Battle of the Scarpe, The Third Battle of the Scarpe, The Battle of Langemarck, The capture of Tadpole Copse, The capture of Bourlon Wood, The German counter attacks.
1918
The First Battle of Arras, The Battle of Albert, The Battle of the Scarpe, The Battle of the Canal du Nord, The Battle of the Cambrai, The pursuit to the Selle, The Battle of the Sambre, The passage of the Grand Honelle.
11.11.1918 Ended the war at Athis north of Bavai, Belgium.

1/6th & 1/7th Battalion Territorial Force
04.08.1914 1/6th Stationed at Stockport and 1/7th stationed at Macclesfield, both as part of the Cheshire Brigade of the Welsh Division and then moved to Shrewsbury and then Northampton.
Nov 1914 Mobilised for war leaving the Welsh Division and landing in France and joined G.H.Q. Troops.
17.12.1914 Transferred to the 15th Brigade of the 5th Division.
01.03.1915 Transferred to G.H.Q. troops.
09.01.1916 Transferred to the 20th Brigade of the 7th Division.
29.02.1916 Transferred to the 118th Brigade of the 39th Division which engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1916
An attack near Richebourg l'Avoue, The fighting on the Ancre, The Battle of Thiepval Ridge, The Battle of the Ancre heights, The Battle of the Ancre.
1917
The Battle of Pilkem Ridge, The Battle of Langemarck, The Battle of the Menin Road Ridge, The Battle of Polygon Wood, The Second Battle of Passchendaele.
1918
The Battle of St Quentin, The actions at the Somme crossings, The Battle of Bapaume, The Battle of Rosieres, The fighting on Wytschaete Ridge, The First Battle of Kemmel, The Second Battle of Kemmel, The Battle of the Scherpenberg.
28.05.1918 Transferred to the 75th Brigade of the 25th Division.
17.06.1918 Absorbed 16 Officers and 492 mean for the 11th Battalion.
08.07.1918Transferred to the 21st Brigade of the 30th Division;
The Battle of Ypres, The Battle of Courtrai.
11.11.1918 Ended the war at Anseroeuil near Renaix, Belgium.

2/4th Battalion Territorial Force
09.09.1914 Formed at Birkenhead and then moved to Aberystwyth.
Mar 1915 Moved to Northampton as part of the 204th Brigade of the 68th Division and then moved to Bedford.
08.12.1915 Absorbed by the 2/7th Battalion.

2/5th (Earl of Chester’s) Battalion Territorial Force
28.11.1914 Formed at Chester.
18.02.1915 Joined the Cheshire Brigade of the Welsh Division and moved to Cambridge to replace the 1/5th Battalion.
22.04.1915 Moved to Northampton and transferred to the 204th Brigade of the 68th Division.
Aug 1915 Moved to Bedford and then Lowestoft area.
1917 Moved to Westleton near Yoxford and then Bury St. Edmunds.
21.04.1918 Disbanded.

2/6th Battalion territorial Force
07.09.1914 Formed at Stockport.
22.11.1914 Moved to Northampton joining the Cheshire Brigade of the Welsh Division to replace the 1/6th Battalion then moved to Cambridge.
22.04.1915 Transferred to 204th Brigade of the 68th Division and the moved to Bedford.
22.11.1915 Absorbed the 2/5th Battalion.
Sept 1916 Moved to Lowestoft area.
Mar 1917 Moved to Yarmouth and the Southwold.
11.09.1917 Disbanded.

2/7th Battalion territorial Force
10.10.1914 Formed at Macclesfield and then moved to Northampton as part of the 204th Battalion of the 68th Division.
Aug 1915 Moved to Bedford.
08.12.1915 Absorbed the 2/4th Battalion.
Sept 1916 Moved to Lowestoft.
May 1917 Moved to Wrentham.
31.03.1918 Disbanded at Southwold.

3/4th Battalion territorial Force
15.03.1915 Formed at Birkenhead and the moved to Oswestry.
08.04.1916 Became the 4th (Reserve) Battalion.
01.09.1916 Absorbed the 5th 6th and 7th (Reserve) Battalions in the Welsh Reserve Brigade.
April 1918 Moved to Kinmel, Rhyl.
Aug 1918 Moved to Whitstable where it remained.

3/5th 3/6th 7 3/7th Battalion Territorial Force
Mar 1915 Formed at Chester, Stockport and Macclesfield and then moved to Oswestry, Shropshire.
08.04.1916 Became Reserve Battalion.
01.09.1916 Absorbed by the 4th (Reserve) Battalion.

8th (service) Battalion
12.08.1914 Formed at Chester as part of the First New Army (K1) and then moved to Tidworth in the 40th Brigade of the 13th Division and then moved to Chisledon.
Feb 1915 Moved to Pirbright, Aldershot.
June 1915 Deployed to Egypt.
July 1915 Deployed to Gallipoli and engaged in various actions against the Turkish Army including;
The Battle of Sari Bair, The Battle of Russell's Top, The Battle of Hill 60.
Jan 1916 Evacuated from Gallipoli to Egypt due to severe casualties from combat, disease and harsh weather and moved to defend the Suez Canal.
Feb 1916 Deployed to Mesopotamia and engaged the Turkish Army in various actions;
1917
The Battle of Kut al Amara, The capture of the Hai Salient, The capture of Dahra Bend, The passage of the Diyala, The pursuit of the enemy towards Baghdad, Capture of Baghdad, the Battles of Delli 'Abbas, Duqma, Nahr Kalis, crossed the 'Adhaim and at Shatt al 'Adhaim, The Second and Third Actions of Jabal Hamrin and at Tuz Khurmatli.
31.10.1918 Ended the War north of Baghdad, Mesopotamia.

9th (Service) Battalion
13.09.1914 Formed Chester as part of the Second New Army (K2) and then moved to Salisbury Plain in the 56th Brigade of the 19th Division and then moved to Basingstoke.
Mar 1915 Moved to Salisbury Plain.
19.07.1915 Mobilised for war and landed Boulogne and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1915
The Action of Pietre; diversionary action during the Battle of Loos.
1916
The Battle of Albert, The attacks on High Wood, The Battle of Pozieres Ridge, The Battle of the Ancre Heights, The Battle of the Ancre.
1917
The Battle of Messines, The Battle of the Menin Road Ridge, The Battle of Polygon Wood, The Battle of Broodseinde, The Battle of Poelcapelle, First Battle of Passchendaele, The Second Battle of Passchendaele.
1918
The Battle of St Quentin, The Battle of Bapaume, The Battle of Messines, The Battle of Bailleul, The First Battle of Kemmel Ridge, The Battle of the Aisne, The Battle of the Selle, The Battle of the Sambre and the passage of the Grand Honelle.
11.11.1918 Ended the war west of Bavai, France.

10th (Service) Battalion
10.09.1914 Formed at Chester as part of the Third New Army (K3) and then moved to Codford St. May in the 75th Brigade of the 25th Division and then moved to Bournemouth.
May 1915 Moved to Aldershot.
26.09.1915 Mobilised for war and landed in France.
26.10.1915 Transferred to the 7th Brigade of the 25th Division which engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1916
German attack on Vimy Ridge, The Battle of Albert, The Battle of Bazentin, The Battle of Pozieres, The Battle of the Ancre Heights,
1917
The Battle of Messines, The Battle of Pilkem.
1918
The Battle of St Quentin, The First Battle of Bapaume.
21.06.1918 Reduced to cadre and remaining personnel transferred to the 9th Battalion.
June 1918 Returned to England and stationed at Aldershot as part of the 25th Division.
July 1918 Moved to Walsham and absorbed by the South Wales Borderers.

11th (Service) Battalion
17.09.1914 Formed at Chester as part of the Third New Army (K3) And then moved to Codford St. Mary in the 75th Brigade of the 25th Division and then moved to Bournemouth.
May 1915 Moved to Aldershot.
26.09.1915 Mobilised for war and landed in France and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1916
German attack on Vimy Ridge, The Battle of Albert, The Battle of Bazentin, The Battle of Pozieres, The Battle of the Ancre Heights.
1917
The Battle of Messines, The Battle of Pilkem.
1918
The Battle of St Quentin, The First Battle of Bapaume.
17.06.1918 Reduced to cadre remaining personnel transferred to the 1/6th Battalion.
23.06.1918 Cadre transferred to the 39th Division.
03.08.1918 Disbanded in France.

12th (Service) Battalion
Sept 1914 Formed at Chester as part of the Third New Army attached to the 22nd Division and moved to Seaford and then Eastbourne.
Feb 1915 Transferred to the 66th Brigade of the 22nd Division and then moved to Aldershot.
06.09.1915 Mobilised for war and landed at Boulogne.
Nov 1915 Deployed to Salonika and engaged in various actions against the Bulgarian Army including;
1916
The Battle of Horseshoe Hill, The Battle of Machukovo.
1917
The Battles of Doiran.
1918
The Battle of Doiran.
30.09.1918 Ended the war near Lake Doiran, Macedonia.

13th (Service) Battalion
01.09.1914 formed by Greshom Stewart MP at Port Sunlight and then moved to Chester.
Oct 1914 Moved to Salisbury Plain to join the 74th Brigade of the 25th Division and then moved to Bournemouth.
May 1915 Moved to Aldershot.
25.09.1915 Mobilised for war and landed in France and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1916
German attack on Vimy Ridge, The Battle of Albert, The Battle of Bazentin, The Battle of Pozieres, The Battle of the Ancre Heights.
1917
The Battle of Messines, The Battle of Pilkem.
1918
The Battle of St Quentin, The First Battle of Bapaume.
16.02.1918 Disbanded in France.

14th (Reserve) Battalion
Oct 1914 Formed at Birkenhead as a service battalion of the Fourth New Army (K4) as part of the 105th Brigade of the 35th Division.
10.04.1915 Became a 2nd Reserve Battalion.
July 1915 Moved to Kinmel and then Prees Heath as part of the 11th Reserve Brigade.
01.09.1916 Became the 59th Training Reserve Battalion.

15th (Service) Battalion (1st Birkenhead) & 16th (Service) Battalion (2nd Birkenhead)
18.11.1914 The 15th formed and the 16th formed on 03.12.1914 both by Alfred Bigland MP at Birkenhead as a Bantam Battalion and then moved to Holylake.
June 1915 Moved to Masham, Yorkshire as part of the 105th Brigade of the 35th Division and then moved to Salisbury Plain and taken over by the War Office.
Jan 1916 Mobilised for war and landed in Havre and engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
1916
The Battle of Bazentin Ridge, The fighting for Arrow Head Copse and Maltz Horn Farm, The fighting for Falfemont Farm.
1917
The pursuit of the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line, The fighting in Houthulst Forest, The Second Battle of Passchendaele.
1918
The First Battle of Bapaume, The Battle of Ypres, The Battle of Courtrai, The action of Tieghem.
11.11.1918 Ended the war at Audenhove N.E. of Renaix, Belgium.

17th (Reserve) Battalion
10.08.1915 Formed from the depot companies of the 15th and 16th Battalions at Bebington as a local reserve battalion and then moved to Prees Heath as part of the 17th Reserve Brigade.
01.09.1916 Became the 74th Training Reserve Battalion.

18th & 19th (Labour) Battalions
Mar & April 1916 Formed at Oldham.
April & May 1916 Deployed to France.
April 1917 Transferred to Labour Corps as the 56th 57th 58th and 59th Labour Companies.

20th & 21st (Labour) Battalion
June 1916 The 20th formed at Chester.
Aug 1916 The 21st formed at Chester.
July 1916 The 20th deployed to France.
Oct 1916 The 20th deployed to France.
April 1917 The 20th transferred to Labour Corps as the 60th and 61st Labour Companies.
April 1917 The 21st transferred to Labour Corps as the 62nd and 63rd Labour Companies.

22nd (Labour) Battalion
Dec 1916 Formed at Chester.
Dec 1916Deployed to France.
April 1917 Transferred to Labour Corps as the 64th and 65th Labour Companies.

23rd Battalion Territorial Force
01.01.1917 Formed at Happisburgh, Norfolk from the 46th Provisional Battalion as part of the 224th Brigade and then moved to Bacton, Norfolk.
April 1918 Moved back to Happisburgh and became a Garrison Guard.
21.05.1918 Mobilised for war and landed at Calais and join the 178th Brigade of the 59th Division.
19.06.1918 Transferred to the 121st Brigade of the 49th Division and the title of ‘Garrison’ was dropped and the Division engaged in various actions on the Western Front including;
The Battle of Messines, The Battle of Bailleul, The First Battle of Kemmel Ridge, The Second Battle of Kemmel Ridge, The Battle of the Scherpenberg, The pursuit to the Selle, The Battle of the Selle, The Battle of Valenciennes.
11.11.1918 Ended the war near Roubaix, France.

24th (Home Service) Battalion
27.04.1918 Formed at Mundesley to replace the 23rd Battalion in the 224th Brigade and remained there.

1st Garrison Battalion
01.08.1915 Formed at Chester.
Sept 1915 Deployed to Gibraltar.

2nd Garrison Battalion
Oct 1915 Formed at Bebington, Merseyside.
Mar 1916 Deployed to Egypt and on the Lines of Communications in Palestine by the end of the war.

3rd (Home Service) Garrison Battalion
Nov 1915 Formed at Ramsay, Isle of Man.
July 1916 Moved to Gretna and then Liverpool.
Aug 1917 Became the 11th Battalion of the Royal Defence Corps.

51st (Graduated) Battalion
27.10.1917 Formed at Curragh from the 213th Graduated Battalion (previously the 59th Training Reserve Battalion) as part of the 194th Brigade of the 65th Division.
Mar 1918 The Division was broken up and the Battalion remained in Curragh.

52nd (Graduated) Battalion
27.10.1917 Formed at Curragh from the 221st Graduated Battalion (previously the 61st Training Reserve Battalion) as part of the 196th Brigade of the 65th Division.
Mar 1918 The Division was broken up and the Battalion remained in Curragh.

53rd (Young Soldier) Battalion
27.10.1917 Formed at Kinmel, Rhyl from the 62nd Training Reserve Battalion (formerly the 12th Royal Welsh Fusiliers) as part of the 14th Reserve Brigade.

Memories of Cheshire Regiment

(Memories written by members of Forces Reunited)

Cheshire Regiment, selarang singapore in 1969

Written by brian burton

living in serangoon.with wife mary .many happy times with fred rathmill ,geof small ,don reay .also gabby hayes .loadsa booze .

cheshire regiment in 1946

Written by henry wall

was statioed a few miles outside the port of haifa a fewmiles awayin a camp located along side a public road. an Arab legion unit was sited some 200 yards away opposite.I would very much like to hear from any member who was there at the time. I was in C.Company.

Cheshire Regiment, BERLIN STADIUM PARADE in 1955

Written by KENNETH GUNTRIP.

I WAS A LCPL DRUMMER CORPS DRUMS AND WAS ON THE QUEENS BIRTHDAY PARADE IN 1955. IT WAS A MOMENTOUS AND BIG PARADE.ARGYLE AND SUTHERLAND HIGHLANDERS TROOPED THEIR COLOURS ON THIS OCCASION. I HAVE FOND MEMORIES OF THE MASS BANDS AND DRUMS AND WONDERED IF ANY FILMS OR PHOTOS ARE AROUND TO SEE.PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
IN 1957 THE MASSED BANDS AND DRUMS OF THE 1ST,4TH AND 7TH BNS WERE AT THE ROODEE CHESTER FOR THE HISTORIC PRESENTAION OF THE COLOURS TO THE THREE BATTALIONS AND THIS WAS THE FIRST TIME THAT MORE THAN ONE SET WAS PRESENTED TO A REGIMENT BY ROYALTY.WOULD LOVE TO SEE ANY PHOTS OR FILM OF THE OCCASION. PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
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