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1st King Edward's Horse Regiment


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#1 CharlesJohnston

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 08:53 PM

I am trying to identify where 1st King Edward's Horse Regiment was located at the start of the Third Battle of Ypres.

I have checked at http://www.1914-1918...kingedwards.htm, but am confused by the move to XVIII Corps in July 1917 - I cannot find the Regiment listed under the order of battle.

My great-uncle William H.D. Bell was in the 1st KEHR and was killed in action on 31 July 1917. I'd like to identify more precisely where. Somewhere around Essex Farm?

#2 Wienand Drenth

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 09:25 PM

Hello Charles,

As for 1st KEH and the confusion with XVIII Corps, I hope I can help.
The regiment was split up, as per this website, with squadron being detached to various divisions. In June 1916 the regiment concentrated and re-formed again, and became IV Corps Cavalry Regiment.
At the time every Corps had a Cavalry Regiment. Sometimes this was, as in this case, a complete regiment; other corps cavalry regiments were composed of a mixture of Yeomanry squadrons. In July 1917 the regiment became the Corps Cavalry Regiment of XVIII Corps, whence the move to XVIII Corps. I think that the title XVIII Corps Cavalry Regiment might have been used for the regiment as well. These "double" identities are quite confusing.
I hope this is some use. Sorry I cannot help with the rest of your questions.

Cheers,
Wienand

#3 Jacky Platteeuw

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 10:02 PM

Charles,

I presume we talk about the same person: Captain William Henry Dillon BELL killed 31st July 1931 and commemorated on te Menin Gate. A member of parliament of New Zealand ? If so I am particularly interested in his story. I have done some research so please confirm if indeed this is your great uncle.

Jacky

#4 Jacky Platteeuw

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Posted 10 January 2005 - 10:05 PM

Charles

As you certainly have noticed typing is not my strongest point so in my message date of death should read 31st July 1917. Sorry.

Jacky

#5 CharlesJohnston

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 09:28 AM

Wienand,

Thank you, that does help a lot. But I cannot see any reference to the XVIII Corps Cavalry Regt. in the 39th or 51st Divisions, which I understand XVIII Coprs was composed of at Passchendaele, see e.g. http://www.1914-1918.net/bat20.htm

Jacky,

Yes. This is the same person. I'll mail you directly...

Charles

#6 CharlesJohnston

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 11:37 AM

Jacky has kindly answered my query: C-squadron of 1st King Edward's Horse was with the 51st Highland Division in the region of St. Julien - Langemark.

#7 koyli

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 11:47 AM

hi Charles,

The Regiment was in the line between St Julien and Langemark. They had crossed the Steenbeek, somewhere in front of Haanixbeek farm. The commanding officer was shot by a sniper . Captain Bell was also hit by a sniper and died instantly. According to the Unit history this happened after 6 p.M at dusk.

KOYLI

#8 CharlesJohnston

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 08:41 PM

Many thanks, KOYLI. Now I begin to know what happened. Do you have any furhter details on the Regiments action that day?

Kind regards,

Charles

#9 Robert Dunlop

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 09:06 PM

From the Day-by-Day account of Third Ypres:

'The Black Watch were checked by machine-gun fire from Goumier Farm. This was cleared and they went on to the Black Line. Continuing with the attack, they encountered heavy fire from Rudolphe Farm and Cane Wood. Parties were sent out over the Steenbeek, north of the Military Road, where posts were established. This was the signal for a squadron of King Edward's Horse to advance and patrol north of the Steenbeek. However, they came under heavy machine-gun fire and dug in, covering Maison du Rasta.

Robert

#10 Robert Dunlop

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 09:22 PM

From the British Official History:

'The capture of the second objective had been the signal for a forward movement by a number of field batteries. On the XVIII Corps front, six field batteries had advanced and were in action by 9 am alongside the eleven forward "silent" batteries. In the sectors of each division, too, a squadron of cavalry was to advance, as soon as the second objective had been captured, to reconnoitre ahead of the foremost infantry and exploit any local success. Some of the units did attempt to reach the Steenbeek; but most of their horses were killed in a gallant effort to carry out their orders. The squadron, 1/King Edward's Horse, in the sector of the 51st Division advanced as far as a hundred and fifty yards short of the Steenbeek before the survivors dismounted and took up position near Ferdinand Farm, where they remained till the following morning.'

Assuming William Bell was killed in this approximate location, the attached portion of map illustrates Ferdinand Farm (not far from St Julien) and its proximity to the Steenbeek.

Robert

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#11 CharlesJohnston

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Posted 12 January 2005 - 05:18 AM

Many, many thanks, Robert and all! I think I have a good understanding now of what happened to him.

Charles

#12 Mr Wig

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Posted 13 August 2010 - 12:33 AM

hi Charles,

The Regiment was in the line between St Julien and Langemark. They had crossed the Steenbeek, somewhere in front of Haanixbeek farm. The commanding officer was shot by a sniper . Captain Bell was also hit by a sniper and died instantly. According to the Unit history this happened after 6 p.M at dusk.

KOYLI


Hi there Koyli, my great uncle Sydney George Kibble served in the 1st King Edward's Horse.
I have recently been researching his military history (he also served in the Boer War).
I was emailed an extract from the Regiment's history regarding the incident you mentioned, the sniper killing of Captain Bell.
My great uncle Syd was mentioned...he too was wounded by the sniper.
"Misfortunes followed each other rapidly, as major Swann had only been carried to the rear a short half hour when the same sniper shot Captain Bell, who had taken over the squadron and killed him instantly. He also severley wounded Sergeant-Major Kibble"