5th Cavalry Division (India)

The 2nd Mounted Division was a cavalry division that served as part of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force in Palestine in World War I. It was formed in April 1918 when three brigades already in Palestine were merged with elements of the 2nd Indian Cavalry Division withdrawn from the Western Front. In July 1918, the division was renamed as the 5th Cavalry Division. It remained in Palestine after the end of the war on occupation duties until finally broken up in 1920.

2nd Mounted Division
5th Cavalry Division
ActiveApril 1918 – April 1920
BranchBritish Indian Army
EngagementsWorld War I
Maj.-Gen. H.J.M. Macandrew


2nd Mounted Division

In March 1918, the 2nd Indian Cavalry Division was broken up in France. The Canadian (Canadian Cavalry Brigade) and British units (notably 7th Dragoon Guards, 8th Hussars and N and X Batteries RHA) remained in France and the Indian elements were sent to Egypt.[1]

By an Egyptian Expeditionary Force GHQ Order of 12 April 1918, the mounted troops of the EEF were reorganised when the Indian Army units arrived in theatre. On 24 April 1918, the 2nd Mounted Division was formed[2] on the Indian Establishment.[a] This new formation should not be confused with the original 2nd Mounted Division that saw action in the Gallipoli Campaign, though the 5th and 7th Mounted Brigades served in both.[3]

5th Cavalry Division

On 22 July 1918, the 2nd Mounted Division was renumbered as the 5th Cavalry Division and the brigades as the 13th, 14th and 15th (Imperial Service) Cavalry Brigades. The sub units (Signal Troops, Combined Cavalry Field Ambulances and Mobile Veterinary Sections) were renumbered on the same date.[9]

Order of Battle, September 1918[9]
13th Cavalry Brigade

1/1st Royal Gloucestershire Hussars
9th Hodson's Horse
18th King George's Own Lancers
19th Machine Gun Squadron
13th Cavalry Brigade Signal Troop
13th Combined Cavalry Field Ambulance, RAMC
13th Mobile Veterinary Section

14th Cavalry Brigade

1/1st Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry
20th Deccan Horse
34th Prince Albert Victor's Own Poona Horse
20th Machine Gun Squadron
14th Cavalry Brigade Signal Troop
14th Combined Cavalry Field Ambulance, RAMC
14th Mobile Veterinary Section

15th (Imperial Service) Cavalry Brigade

Mysore Lancers
1st Hyderabad Lancers
1st Jodhpur Lancers
15th I.S. Machine Gun Squadron
15th Kathiawar Signal Troop
15th I.S. Cavalry Field Ambulance
15th I.S. Mobile Veterinary Section


Essex Battery, RHA
Nottinghamshire Battery, RHA[b]
Ammunition Column

Divisional Troops

5th Field Squadron, RE[c]
5th Cavalry Division Signal Squadron

5th Cavalry Division Train

1044th Company ASC
1103rd Company ASC
1104th Company ASC
1105th Company ASC


IWM Q12386Damascus.jpeg
Gloucester Yeomanry march through Damascus on 2 October 1918

The 2nd Mounted / 5th Cavalry Division served with the Desert Mounted Corps for the rest of the war, taking part in the Second Transjordan Raid (30 April to 4 May 1918, 15th I.S. Brigade only), Affair of Abu Tellul (14 July), and the Final Offensive including the Battle of Megiddo (19 – 25 September), Capture of Haifa (23 September, 15th I.S. Brigade only) and Damascus (1 October), Affair of Haritan (26 October, 15th I.S. Brigade only) and Occupation of Aleppo (26 October).[2]

The division remained in Palestine on occupation duties after the end of the war. However, demobilization began immediately and most of the British war time units had left by the middle of 1919. 14th Cavalry Brigade was broken up in September 1919, and the 15th (I.S.) Cavalry Brigade in January 1920. The division (and 13th Cavalry Brigade) was finally broken up in April 1920.[2]

See also


  1. ^ British Indian Army standard whereby brigades only retained one British regiment or battalion and most support units were Indian (artillery excepted).
  2. ^ Nottinghamshire, RHA was attached from Australian Mounted Division from September to October 1918.[10]
  3. ^ 7th Field Squadron, RE was renumbered as 5th Field Squadron, RE.[9]


  1. ^ Perry 1993, p. 20
  2. ^ a b c Perry 1993, p. 28
  3. ^ Perry 1993, p. 27
  4. ^ James 1978, p. 29
  5. ^ James 1978, p. 26
  6. ^ James 1978, p. 31
  7. ^ Becke 1936, p. 32
  8. ^ Becke 1936, p. 33
  9. ^ a b c d Perry 1993, p. 26
  10. ^ Perry 1992, p. 51


  • Becke, Major A.F. (1936). Order of Battle of Divisions Part 2A. The Territorial Force Mounted Divisions and the 1st-Line Territorial Force Divisions (42–56). London: His Majesty's Stationery Office. ISBN 1-871167-12-4.
  • James, Brigadier E.A. (1978). British Regiments 1914–18. London: Samson Books. ISBN 0-906304-03-2.
  • Perry, F.W. (1992). Order of Battle of Divisions Part 5A. The Divisions of Australia, Canada and New Zealand and those in East Africa. Newport: Ray Westlake Military Books. ISBN 1-871167-25-6.
  • Perry, F.W. (1993). Order of Battle of Divisions Part 5B. Indian Army Divisions. Newport: Ray Westlake Military Books. ISBN 1-871167-23-X.
List of military divisions by number

This is a list of military divisions of all nationalities organised by number. Divisions may be infantry, airborne, cavalry, mechanized, armoured or aviation.

See also: List of military divisions by name

Indian Army Divisions in World War I
Indian Expeditionary Forces 1914–1918
Force A Western Front
Force B East Africa Campaign
Force C East Africa Campaign
Force D Mesopotamia Campaign
Force E Sinai and Palestine Campaign
Force F Suez Canal
Force G Gallipoli Campaign

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