Battalions of the Border Regiment

The home of the Lonsdale Battalion and the Border Regiment in the First World War
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The Border Regiment served in many theatres of war during World War One – France and Flanders, Italy, Macedonia, Gallipoli, Egypt and the North West Frontier. By the time of the armistice and the call for peace, the war came to a close at 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. The Empire had suffered greatly in casualties and more than one million had died. Of this figure, the Border Regiment had lost over 13,000 dead and the Lonsdale Battalion alone almost 800; the regiment has been awarded with no less than 64 battle honours.

Of the officers and other ranks within the battalion, the Victoria Cross was awarded five times.

Battalion Type Formed Theatre of War Honours Disbanded
1st Regular Army 1 July 1881 France & Flanders 1916, 1917, 1918
Gallipoli 1915, 1916
Not disbanded
Served in France from March 1916 to November 1918. After the Armistice the Battalion moved to Germany on the 4 December 1918, stationed at Hilgen until 27 March 1919, where it was slowly reduced to Cadre strength. It then proceeded to Mulheim and on 30 March the Cadre left for Dunkirk. It sailed from there on 3 April in the Antrim for Dover, after which it entrained to Brookwood and by march route to Dettingen Barracks, Blackdown. The Battalion remained here until it embarked for India later in the year.
2nd Regular Army 1 July 1881 France & Flanders 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917 Not disbanded
Served in France from 6 October 1914 to November 1917. After the Armistice the Battalion was quartered at or near Lonigo until the end of February, 1919, and on the 17 March, having been reduced to Cadre strength, it entrained at Tavernelle for Havre en route to England. It arrived at Carlisle on 24 March and was accorded a civic welcome, being entertained by the Mayor and Corporation. In July, 1919, the Battalion moved to Claremorris, County Mayo, where the personnel of the 3rd Battalion, less permanent Staff, was absorbed into it.
3rd Regular Army
(Reserve)
Not deployed on operational service overseas
Remained in UK
11 November 1918
Remained in the UK as depot and training unit supplying drafts to the Regular Army Battalions overseas. At the outbreak of war in August 1914 they were based in Carlisle but moved to Shoeburyness on mobilisation and then in January 1916 to Conway, in November 1916 to Barrow and finally in March 1917 to Great Crosby for duty with the Mersey Garrison.
4th Battalion this refers to the following three battalions
1/4th Territorial Force
(Cumberland & Westmorland)
The battalion was mobilised on 4 August 1914 and shortly after that sailed for India, however, it wasn't until the raising of the Battalion's reserve unit that it became known as the 1/4th Battalion Border Regiment, after which this was the Battalion's official title. The battalion, in Carlisle at the time, moved to Barrow and then in September was moved to Sittingbourne.

On 29 September the battalion sailed from Southampton for India, its primarily role being to replace the regular 1st Battalion who were at that time stationed in Burma. When they arrived they were attached to the Burma Division and arrived at Rangoon in early December 1914. Both battalions of the Regiment met only very briefly for a duration of no more than twenty minutes as their trains stopped side by side in a remote area of India. The 1/4th Battalion spent the duration of the war stationed there. In February 1918 the Battalion transferred to the Jubbulpore Brigade in 5th (Mhow) Division.

2/4th Territorial Force
(Cumberland & Westmorland)
September 1914 North-West Frontier 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919 31 January 1920
The battalion did not see action in Europe but still played a pivotal role for the duration of the Great War in India. It remained in India until the end of 1919, having served in the Third Afghan War of that year.

The battalion sailed for India from Avonmouth on 4 March 1915. On arrival they were attached to the Poona Brigade in 6th Poona Divisional Area. By November 1915 they had been transferred to the Jubbulpore Brigade in 5th Mhow Division and again in March 1916 to the Peshawar Brigade in 1st Peshawar Division. In March 1917 they moved to the 4th Rawalpindi Brigade (2nd Rawalpindi Division) and in December 1917 were transferred to the Nowshera Brigade in 1st Peshawar Division. In October 1918 the battalion returned to 4th Rawalpindi Brigade and on 11 November they left Peshawar and embarked the H.M.T. Friedrichsruh on the 15th. The battalion finally disembarked at Plymouth on 9 December and proceeded to various dispersal stations. The Cadre was sent first to Kendal and then to Carlisle.

3/4th Territorial Force
(Cumberland & Westmorland)
March 1915 Not deployed on operational service overseas
Remained in UK
1 September 1916
(absorbed)
Formed as a third line or depot/training battalion and supplied drafts to 1/4th and 2/4th Battalions. In December 1915 the battalion moved to Ramsey on the Isle of Man and in April 1916 became a reserve battalion. The 3/5th Battalion was absorbed into the 3/4th Battalion on the 1 September 1916. It moved to Ripon in January 1917 and then to Scarborough in May and Filey in November of the same year.
5th Battalion this refers to the following three battalions
1/5th Territorial Force
(Cumberland)
France & Flanders 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917
The battalion served in France from 26 October 1914 to 11 November 1918. In August 1914 it was based in Carlisle, attached to the East Lancashire Division and moved to Barrow. On 26 October 1914 it landed at Le Havre and over the next four years was attached and transferred to several brigades, these being: 5 May 1915 - attached to 149th Brigade in 50th (Northumbrian) Division; 20 December 1915 - transferred to 151st Brigade in same Division; 12 February 1918 - transferred to the 66th (2nd East Lancashire) Division as a Pioneer Battalion; 7 May 1918 - transferred to 97th Brigade in 32nd Division and absorbed the cadre of the Regiment's 11th Battalion (Lonsdale).

The Battalion remained in Flanders until 31 January 1919, when it marched into Germany and quartered at Cologne until the end of March before moving to Bonn. On 6 November the battalion left Bonn and entrained for Calais. By 10 December the battalion sailed for Dover and on 14 December, arrived in Workington.

2/5th Territorial Force
(Cumberland)
October 1914 January 1916
(absorbed)
The battalion was formed in Kendal as a second line or home service battalion. Like the 2/4th Battalion, it moved to Blackpool where they billeted for a few months. Then, in November 1915, it moved Falkirk where it was merged with the 2/4th and 2/5th Royal Scots Fusiliers to form the 13th Battalion. In January 1916 it was finally absorbed into the 2/4th Royal Scots Fusiliers.
3/5th Territorial Force
(Cumberland Reserve)
March 1915 Not deployed on operational service overseas
Remained in UK
1 September 1916
(absorbed)
The battalion was formed in Kendal third line or depot/training battalion. It was absorbed into the 3/4th Battalion on 1 September 1916, moved to Ripon in January 1917, Scarborough in May and then Filey in November of the same year.
6th Service August 1914 France & Flanders 1916, 1917, 1918
Gallipoli 1915
9 February 1917
Formed in Carlisle the battalion was attached to the 33rd Brigade of the 11th (Northern) Division and served in France from 6 July 1916 to the 9 February 1917. It moved from Cumbria to Belton Park (Grantham) and then to Frensham in April 1915 for training. It sailed with other 11th Division units from Liverpool on 1 July 1915 for Gallipoli, landing at Helles 20 July and was complete at Suvla Bay by August 1915. Operational at Suvla Bay from August 1915 until December 1915, it moved from Gallipoli and spent Christmas at Mudros on the Isle of Lemnos. The battalion was then withdrawn to Egypt January 1916 for Suez Canal protection duties, remaining for 6 months before embarking at Alexandria and sailing to Marseille in July 1916.

The battalion did not play a significant part in the Battle of the Somme until the beginning of September. The battalion was near the Peckham House, Spanbroekmolen and Kruisstraat mines during the 1917 Battle of Messines. Disbanded at Malingarbe on the 9th February 1917, the officers and men of the battalion were then absorbed into the 1st, 7th, 8th and 11th Battalions of the Regiment.

7th Service 7 September 1914 France & Flanders 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918 22 September 1917
(absorbed)
Formed in Carlisle, the battalion was attached to the 51st Brigade of the 17th Division and served in France from 15 July 1915 to 11 November 1918. It moved to Andover, then to Bovington in January 1915 and finally to Winchester in June 1915. A month later it landed at Boulogne 15 July. The battalion absorbed the dismounted Westmoreland and Cumberland Yeomanry on the 22 September 1917 to form the 7th (Westmorland & Cumberland Yeomanry) Battalion.

After the Armistice the Battalion remained at Troisvilles for a few days. It then moved to Liercourt in the Amiens area on the 14 December where the Battalion was slowly reduced to Cadre strength. The Cadre left Liercourt on the 16 April 1919 where it entrained for Havre and arrived the following day. The Cadre docked at Southampton early on the 20th, then left again late the same night for Catterick, where it was eventually disbanded.

8th Service September 1914 France & Flanders 1916, 1917, 1918 July 1918
Formed in Carlisle, the battalion was attached to the 75th Brigade of the 25th Division and served in France from 27 September 1915 to 7 July 1918. It moved to Codford, into billets at Boscombe in November 1914, then to Romsey in May 1915, eventually moving on to Aldershot following month before landed at Boulogne 27 September 1915. On 22 June 1918 the battalion was transferred to Composite Brigade in 50th (Northumbrian) Division. A month later it was disbanded at Embry in July 1918 on account of the 25th Division being broken up and sent home.
9th Service
(Pioneers)
September 1914 Macedonia 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918
Formed in Carlisle, the battalion was attached to the 66th Brigade of the 22nd Division and served in France from the 4 September 1915 to 29 October 1915. It moved to East Sussex, first to Lewes, then Seaford and finally to Eastbourne in November 1914. In February 1915 it became the Divisional Pioneers in same Division and moved back to Seaford in March and on to Aldershot May.

The battalion landed at Le Havre 4 September 1915. Two months later it found itself at Salonika, arriving 7 November 1915. Here they remained until 20 October 1918, then moved to Stavros on the 28th to Dedeagatch and back again to Stavros on the 13 November. On the 16 January 1919, the Battalion proceeded to Kukus and on the 7 March to Janes. On the 16 March, and greatly reduced in strength, it embarked in H.M.T. Katonia for Constantinople, where it remained until the 10 November, when all remaining officers and other ranks were posted as a draft to the 9th Battalion The King's Own Regiment.

10th Service
(Reserve)
October 1914 Not deployed on operational service overseas
Remained in UK
1 September 1916
Formed in Southend as a Service Battalion of K4. It became a reserve battalion on 10 April 1915 supplying draft to service battalions overseas and moved to Billericay. It was absorbed on 1 September 1916 at Seaford into a Training Reserve Battalions of 4th Reserve Brigade.
11th Service
(Lonsdale)
17 September 1914 France & Flanders 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918 31 July 1918
Formed at Penrith (HQ), Carlisle, Kendal and Workington by the Earl of Lonsdale and an Executive Committee. In May 1915 the battalion moved to Prees Heath Camp and was attached to the 97th Brigade in the 32nd Division. In June it moved to Wensleydale and later to Fovant in August, being taken over by the War Office on the 27 August 1915.

The battalion landed at Boulogne on 23 November 1915 and spent the next two years and eight months in France and Flanders. On 10 May 1918 the battalion was reduced to cadre strength, with surplus personnel transferred to 1/5th Battalion of the Regiment. Three days later it was transferred to the 66th (2nd East Lancashire) Division and on 31 July 1918 the battalion was eventually disbanded.

12th Service
(Reserve)
May/June 1915 Not deployed on operational service overseas
Remained in UK
1 September 1916
(absorbed)
Formed from the Depot Coys of the 11th Battalion at Prees Heath Camp and remained in the UK supplying drafts to the Lonsdales. On 1 September 1916 the battalion was absorbed into the 75th Training Reserve Battalion of 17th Reserve Brigade.
13th Service 1 June 1918 18 June 1918
Formed at Lowestoft. The battalion was absorbed less than three weeks after it was formed into the 11th Battalion Hampshire Regiment.