Yorkshire Brochure Final(5) - Flipbook - Page 6
YORKSHIRE'S PART IN
Most infantry regiments carry
their battle honours on Colours
(ceremonial flags). RIFLES Battalions
do not have Colours, but all Riflemen
carry 34 representative battle
honours (of 913 awarded) on their
belt badge. Some honours were for
great battles of national significance,
like Waterloo, the Somme, El
Alamein and Normandy. Others
are unique to The Rifles, such as
Marabout and Pegasus Bridge. One
scroll on the belt badge is left blank
for a battle honour yet to be won.
Minden (1759) - The 51st Foot was one of six British regiments which advanced
on a numerically vastly superior French force at the Battle of Minden. Despite
repeated cavalry charges, intense artillery fire and counterattack by infantry,
they succeeded in breaking through – resulting in the total collapse of the
French. Since then the 1st August has been celebrated as ‘Minden Day’.
Vittorio Veneto (1918) - The 8th Battalion KOYLI took part in the Battle of
Vittoria Veneto in 1918. XIV Corps, which included 8 KOYLI, fought their way
across the Piave river and were the only attacking formation to achieve all
their objectives on the first day of the battle.
South Africa (1899-1902) - The 2nd Battalion KOYLI fought
throughout the Second Boer War. They took part in the Battle of
Modder River, for which they were granted a battle honour. During
the War Private C. Ward earned the Regiment its first Victoria Cross.
A mounted infantry company from the 1st Battalion KOYLI also saw
considerable action in South Africa.
Peninsula War (1808-1814) - The 51st arrived in Spain late in 1808, just
in time to take part in the Battle of Corunna. In 1809 the Regiment was
converted into Light Infantry. It would go on to see action throughout
the campaign, earning battle honours for Fuentes d'Onor, Salamanca,
Vittoria, the Pyrenees, Nivelle and Orthes.
Waterloo (1815) - The 51st fought on the extreme right of the
Allied Army at Waterloo. They were tasked with guarding the
flank and skirmishing with the French. They fought an action
against French heavy cavalry, who were retreating from
Ney’s failed attack on the Allied centre.
Ypres (1914, ’15, ’17 & ’18) - The KOYLI saw extensive action
during both the First Battle of the Somme in 1916 and the
Second Battle of the Somme in 1918.
Somme (1916, 1918) - Multiple battalions of the KOYLI would
see heavy fighting in the First, Second, Third, Fourth and Fifth
Battles of Ypres, throughout the First World War.
Afghanistan (1878-1880) - During the 1878 invasion of
Afghanistan the 51st successfully outflanked the Afghan fort
of Ali Masjid, which was granted to the Regiment as a battle
honour. They would later take part in the second punitive
invasion in 1879, which saw them operating against the
Normandy (1944) - The 1/4th Battalion KOYLI landed in
Normandy on the 9th June 1944. They fought at the Battle of
Caen and Fontenay le Pesnel. Later they would take part in the
drive east from Normandy and up the Channel coast.
Anzio (1944) - The 1st Battalion KOYLI fought at the Battle of Anzio
in 1944. Not part of the initial landing, 1 KOYLI arrived later to
reinforce the bridgehead. The Battalion was primarily tasked with
holding a key strongpoint in the Allied line – dubbed ‘The Fortress’.
Iraq (2003) - The most recent of The Rifles battle honours was won by
The Light Infantry during the invasion of Iraq in 2003. 1LI advanced on
and captured Basra.
Abridged timeline of historical names and amalgamations of Yorkshire regiments from 1757 to the formation in 2007
51st (2nd Yorkshire, West
Riding) Regiment of Foot
51st (2nd Yorkshire, West Riding, The
King's Own Light Infantry) Regiment (51st)
The King's Own Yorkshire
Light Infantry (KOYLI)
The Light Infatnry (LI)
The Rifles (RIFLES)