The Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) was a line infantry regiment of the British Army in continuous existence for 283 years. It was known as the 7th Regiment of Foot until the Childers Reforms of 1881.
The regiment served in many wars and conflicts throughout its long existence, including the Second Boer War, the First World War and the Second World War. In 1968, the regiment was amalgamated with the other regiments of the Fusilier Brigade – the Royal Northumberland Fusiliers, the Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers and the Lancashire Fusiliers – to form a new large regiment, the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.
|7th Regiment of Foot|
Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment)
Cap badge of the Royal Fusiliers
|Country|| Kingdom of England (1685–1707)|
Kingdom of Great Britain (1707–1800)
United Kingdom (1801–1968)
|Size||1–4 Regular battalions|
|Garrison/HQ||Tower of London|
|Nickname(s)||The Elegant Extracts|
|Motto(s)||Honi soit qui mal y pense|
|March||The Seventh Royal Fusiliers|
It was formed as a fusilier regiment in 1685 by George Legge, 1st Baron Dartmouth, from two companies of the Tower of London guard, and was originally called the Ordnance Regiment. Most regiments were equipped with matchlock muskets at the time, but the Ordnance Regiment were armed with flintlock fusils. This was because their task was to be an escort for the artillery, for which matchlocks would have carried the risk of igniting the open-topped barrels of gunpowder. The regiment went to Holland in February 1689 for service in the Nine Years' War and fought at the Battle of Walcourt in August 1689 before returning home in 1690. It embarked for Flanders later that year and fought at the Battle of Steenkerque in August 1692 and the Battle of Landen in July 1693 and the Siege of Namur in summer 1695 before returning home.
The regiment took part in an expedition which captured the town of Rota in Spain in spring 1702 and then saw action at the Battle of Vigo Bay in October 1702 during the War of the Spanish Succession. The regiment became the 7th Regiment of Foot (Royal Fusiliers) in 1751, although a variety of spellings of the word "fusilier" persisted until the 1780s, when the modern spelling was formalised.
The Royal Fusiliers were sent to Canada in April 1773. The regiment was broken up into detachments that served at Montreal, Quebec, Fort Chambly and Fort St Johns (Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu). In the face of the American invasion of Canada in 1775/76, most of the regiment was forced to surrender. The 80 man garrison of Fort Chambly attempted to resist a 400-man Rebel force but ultimately had to surrender. This is where the regiment lost its first set of colours. A 70-man detachment under the command of Captain Humphrey Owens assisted with the Battle of Quebec in December 1775.
The men taken prisoner during the defence of Canada were exchanged in British held New York City in December 1776. Here, the regiment was rebuilt and garrisoned New York and New Jersey. In October 1777, the 7th participated in the successful assaults on Fort Clinton and Fort Montgomery and the destruction of enemy stores at Continental Village. In late November, 1777 the regiment reinforced the garrison of Philadelphia. During the British evacuation back to New York City, the regiment participated in the Battle of Monmouth in June 1778. The 7th participated in Tryon's raid in July 1779.
In April 1780, the Royal Fusiliers took part in the capture of Charleston. Once Charleston fell, the regiment helped garrison the city. Three companies were sent to Ninety-Six to assist with the training of Loyalist militia companies. An 80-man detachment also sent to Camden, South Carolina to help build that town's defences. The detachments were recalled to Charleston for refitting in late August 1780. They were then mounted and sent to join Charles Cornwallis's Army as it advanced towards Charlotte, North Carolina in early September 1780. The 7th, mounted on horses, along with two regiments of Loyalist militia, cleared the region north of Georgetown, South Carolina of partisans while en route. The Royal Fusiliers turned the horses over to Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton's British Legion upon uniting with Cornwallis in late September and then served as the Army's rearguard.
Between October 1780 and early January 1781, the regiment, having lost about one third of its officers and men to sickness and disease, protected the communication and supply lines between Camden and Winnsboro, South Carolina. On 7 January 7, 1781, a contingent of 171 men from the Royal Fusiliers was detached from Cornwallis's Army and fought under the command of Tarleton at the Battle of Cowpens in January 1781. The Royal Fusiliers were on the left of the line of battle: Tarleton was defeated and the regiment's colours were captured with the baggage wagons. A 19-man detachment from the regiment fought through North Carolina participating in the Battle of Guilford Court House in March 1781 and ultimately the Siege of Yorktown, where it served with the regiment's Light Infantry Company. There was another detachment, which remained in the South under the command of Lt Col. Alured Clarke: these men remained in garrison in Charleston, until they were transferred to Savannah, Georgia in December 1781. The regiment returned to England in 1783.
The regiment embarked for Holland and saw action at the Battle of Copenhagen in August 1807 during the Gunboat War. It was then sent to the West Indies and took part in the capture of Martinique in 1809. It embarked for Portugal later that year for service in the Peninsula War and fought at the Battle of Talavera in July 1809, the Battle of Bussaco in September 1810. and the Battle of Albuera in May 1811.
The regiment then took part in the Siege of Ciudad Rodrigo in January 1812, the Siege of Badajoz in spring 1812 and the Battle of Salamanca in July 1812 as well as the Battle of Vitoria in June 1813. It then pursued the French Army into France and fought at the Battle of the Pyrenees in July 1813, the Battle of Orthez in February 1814 and the Battle of Toulouse in April 1814. It returned to England later that year before embarking for Canada and seeing action at the capture of Fort Bowyer in February 1815 during the War of 1812.
The regiment embarked for Scutari for service in the Crimean War in April 1854 and saw action at the Battle of Alma in September 1854, the Battle of Inkerman in November 1854 and the Siege of Sebastopol in winter 1854. The 1st battalion embarked for India in 1858 and took part in the Ambela Campaign in 1863. Meanwhile, the 2nd battalion was deployed to Upper Canada in October 1866 and helped suppress the Fenian raids and then deployed to India and saw action at the Battle of Kandahar in September 1880 during the Second Anglo-Afghan War.
The regiment was not fundamentally affected by the Cardwell Reforms of the 1870s, which gave it a depot at Hounslow Barracks from 1873, or by the Childers reforms of 1881 – as it already possessed two battalions, there was no need for it to amalgamate with another regiment. Under the reforms, the regiment became The Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) on 1 July 1881 and soon afterwards was assigned its own 1st and 2nd Volunteer Battalions (formerly 10th and 23rd Middlesex Rifle Volunteer Corps respectively).
The regiment's 2nd regular battalion took part in the Second Boer War from 1899 to 1902. The battalion served in South Africa throughout the war, which ended with the Peace of Vereeniging in June 1902. Four months later 350 officers and men of the 2nd battalion left Cape Town on the SS Salamis in late September 1902, arriving at Southampton in late October, when the battalion was posted to Aldershot.
In 1908, the Volunteers and Militia were reorganised nationally, with the former becoming the Territorial Force and the latter the Special Reserve - both the Royal Fusiliers' volunteer battalions were assigned to the new London Regiment, leaving the Fusiliers with three Reserve battalions but no Territorial battalions.
The Royal Fusiliers served with distinction in the First World War:
The 1st Battalion landed at Saint-Nazaire as part of the 17th Brigade in the 6th Division in September 1914 for service on the Western Front; major engagements involving the battalion included the Battle of the Somme in autumn 1916 and the Battle of Passchendaele in autumn 1917.
The 2nd Battalion landed at Gallipoli as part of the 86th Brigade in the 29th Division in April 1915; after being evacuated in December 1915, it moved to Egypt in March 1916 and then landed in Marseille in March 1916 for service on the Western Front; major engagements involving the battalion included the Battle of the Somme in autumn 1916 and the Battle of Arras in spring 1917.
The 3rd Battalion landed at Le Havre as part of the 85th Brigade in the 28th Division in January 1915; major engagements involving the battalion included the Second Battle of Ypres in April 1915 and the Battle of Loos in September 1915. The battalion moved to Egypt in October 1915 and then to Salonika in July 1918.
The 4th Battalion landed at Le Havre as part of the 9th Brigade in the 3rd Division in August 1914 for service on the Western Front; major engagements involving the battalion included the Battle of Mons and the Battle of Le Cateau in August 1914, the First Battle of the Marne and the First Battle of the Aisne in September 1914 and the Battle of La Bassée, the Battle of Messines and the First Battle of Ypres in October 1914. Members of the Battalion won the first two Victoria Crosses of the war near Mons in August 1914 (Lieutenant Maurice Dease and Private Sidney Godley).
The 8th and 9th (Service) Battalions landed in France; they both saw action on the Western Front as part of the 36th Brigade of the 12th (Eastern) Division. The 10th (Service) Battalion, better known as the Stock Exchange Battalion, was formed in August 1914 when 1,600 members of the London Stock Exchange and others from the area joined up: 742 were killed or missing in action on the Western Front. The battalion was originally part of the 54th Brigade of the 18th (Eastern) Division, transferring to the 111th Brigade, 37th Division. The 11th, 12th, 13th and 17th (Service) Battalions landed in France; all four battalions saw action on the Western Front: the 11th Battalion being part of the 54th Brigade, 18th (Eastern) Division, the 12th with the 73rd Brigade, later the 17th Brigade, 24th Division, the 13th with the 111th Brigade, 37th Division and the 17th with the 99th Brigade, 33rd Division, later transferring to the 5th and 6th Brigades of the 2nd Division. The 18th through 21st (Service) Battalions of the regiment were recruited from public schools; all four battalions saw action on the Western Front, all originally serving with the 98th Brigade in the 33rd Division, the 18th and 20th Battalions transferring to the 19th Brigade in the same division. The 22nd (Service) Battalion, which was recruited from the citizens of Kensington, also landed in France and saw action on the Western Front. The 23rd and 24th (Service) Battalion, better known as the Sportsmen's Battalions, also landed in France and saw action on the Western Front: they were among the Pals battalions and were both part of the 99th Brigade of the 33rd Division, later transferring to command of the 2nd Division, with the 24th Battalion joining the 5th Brigade in the same division. The 25th (Frontiersmen) Battalion, Royal Fusiliers, formed in February 1915, served in East Africa. The 26th (Service) Battalion was recruited from the banking community; it saw action on the Western Front as part of the 124th Brigade of the 41st Division. The 32nd (Service) Battalion, which was recruited from the citizens of East Ham, also landed in France and saw action on the Western Front as part of the 124th Brigade of the 41st Division. The 38th through 42nd Battalions of the regiment served as the Jewish Legion in Palestine; many of its members went on to be part of the founding of the State of Israel in 1948.
The Royal Fusiliers War Memorial, stands on High Holborn, near Chancery Lane Underground station, surmounted by the lifesize statue of a First World War soldier, and its regimental chapel is at St Sepulchre-without-Newgate.
The 45th and 46th Battalions of the Royal Fusiliers were part of the North Russia Relief Force, which landed in early 1919 to support the withdrawal of international forces assisting "White" (anti-Bolshevik) Russian forces during the Russian Civil War. The understrength 45th Battalion was composed mainly of former members of the Australian Imperial Force – many of them veterans of the Western Front – who had volunteered for service in Russia.
The 2nd Battalion was attached to the 12th Infantry Brigade, 4th Infantry Division and was sent to France in 1939 after the outbreak of war to join the British Expeditionary Force (BEF). In May 1940, it fought in the Battle of France and was forced to retreat to Dunkirk, where it was then evacuated from France. With the brigade and division, the battalion spent the next two years in the United Kingdom, before being sent overseas to fight in the Tunisia Campaign, part of the final stages of the North African Campaign. Alongside the 1st, 8th and 9th battalions, the 2nd Battalion also saw active service in the Italian Campaign from March 1944, in particular during the Battle of Monte Cassino, fighting later on the Gothic Line before being airlifted to fight in the Greek Civil War.
The 8th and 9th Battalions, the two Territorial Army (TA) units, were part of the 1st London Infantry Brigade, attached to 1st London Infantry Division. These later became the 167th (London) Infantry Brigade and 56th (London) Infantry Division. Both battalions saw service in the final stages of the Tunisia Campaign, where each suffered over 100 casualties in their first battle. In September 1943, both battalions were heavily involved in the landings at Salerno, as part of the Allied invasion of Italy, later crossing the Volturno Line, before, in December, being held up at the Winter Line. Both battalions then fought in the Battle of Monte Cassino and were sent to the Anzio beachhead in February 1944.
Two other TA battalions, the 11th and 12th, were both raised in 1939 when the Territorial Army was ordered to be doubled in size. Both were assigned to 4th London Infantry Brigade, part of 2nd London Infantry Division, later 140th (London) Infantry Brigade and 47th (London) Infantry Division respectively. Both battalions remained in the United Kingdom on home defence duties. In 1943, the 12th Battalion was transferred to the 80th Infantry (Reserve) Division and later to the 47th Infantry (Reserve) Division.
The regiment raised many other battalions during the war, although none of them saw active service overseas in their original roles, instead some were converted to other roles. The 21st Battalion, for example, formed soon after the Dunkirk evacuation, was sent to India in the summer of 1942 and later became part of the 52nd Infantry Brigade, acting in a training capacity in order to train British troops in jungle warfare for service in the Burma Campaign. The 23rd Battalion, also created in June/July 1940, was later converted into 46th Battalion, Reconnaissance Corps, assigned to the 46th Infantry Division, serving with it for the rest of the war.
In August 1952, the regiment, now reduced to a single Regular battalion, entered the Korean War. On 23 April 1968, the regiment was amalgamated with the Royal Northumberland Fusiliers (5th Foot), the Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers (6th Foot) and the Lancashire Fusiliers (20th Foot) to form the 3rd Battalion, Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.
The regiment's battle honours included:
Colonels-in-Chief have included:
The colonels of the regiment included:
Victoria Crosses awarded to members of the regiment were:
The Royal Fusiliers were mentioned in Pink Floyd's film The Wall. It was the regiment that the character Pink's father died in, as well as the writer and producer Roger Waters' father, Eric Fletcher Waters, to whom the Pink Floyd album The Final Cut was dedicated.
The Royal Fusiliers is also mentioned in Jeffrey Archer's bestseller novel, As the Crow Flies. The protagonist of the book, Charlie Trumper, is part of the regiment which fights in the First World War.
Orders are given for a camp to be formed on Ashford-Common, near Winsor, for the 7th regiment of foot, who are to be employed in making new roads, and repairing others; the private men are to have 1s. per day extra for their labour.
Lord Wellington has also sent two divisions of his army, the 3d and 7th, that way... Intelligence is just received that the battle is fought, and we are again victorious. The affair took place at Albuhera, on the 16th: Soult attacked, and was defeated with immense loss on both sides.
The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, a new regiment, with national rather than regional loyalties, is to be formed on St. George's Day, April 23, the Ministry of Defence announced yesterday.
1st (City of London) Battalion, London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers) was an infantry battalion in the British Army.25th (Frontiersmen) Battalion, Royal Fusiliers
The 25th (Frontiersmen) Service Battalion, Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) was a British Army unit that served during World War I. It was raised by the Legion of Frontiersmen.
The battalion served in the African Theatre of the war from 1915–1918, centered mostly in the area around Lake Tanganyika, British East African and German East African territory. The battalion was largely composed of older men who hailed from diverse backgrounds and varied occupations, some of whom were Boer War veterans. Amongst these occupations were English big-game hunters, a British millionaire, several American cowboys, a Scottish light-house keeper, a naturalist, a circus clown, an Arctic explorer, an opera singer, a famous photographer, and a lion tamer. There were also French Foreign Legionaries and Russians (reportedly prison escapees from Siberia).
The unit was formed on 12 February 1915 by Lieutenant-Colonel Daniel Patrick Driscoll, who was, at that time, fifty-five years of age, well above that of an average soldier. Another noted serving officer (and eventually the Second in Command of the battalion) was Frederick Courteney Selous, a veteran of various small African wars and skirmishes, a famous big-game hunter and friend of Theodore Roosevelt. Selous had previously hunted with Roosevelt during his famed 1909 African safari. Selous is also known for having served as the inspiration for Sir H. Rider Haggard to create his fictional Allan Quatermain character, a 19th-century African explorer and hunter of big-game beasts. Captain Selous was later killed in action with the unit, shot through the mouth by a German sniper in January 1917. The unit gained the nickname "Old and the Bold", due to its members' ages, their veteran status, and reputation for endurance and daring against the enemy, even though the majority of volunteers were young men. The battalion was disbanded on 19 June 1918.The exploits of "The Old and the Bold" were later the loose basis of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles episode "The Phantom Train of Doom" (German East Africa, November 1916). Veteran Raiders of the Lost Ark actor Paul Freeman portrayed Selous as an adventurous, cunning, yet decisive commander.2nd (City of London) Battalion, London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers)
2nd (City of London) Battalion, London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers) was an infantry battalion of the British Army.3rd (City of London) Battalion, London Regiment
The 3rd (City of London) Battalion, London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers) was a volunteer unit of the British Army under various titles from 1860 to 1961. Originally raised from railwaymen, the battalion sent a detachment to the Second Boer War and several battalions fought in World War I. Shortly before World War II, it became a searchlight unit and defended the UK during the Blitz, remaining in the air defence role in the postwar Territorial Army.Belgrave Edward Sutton Ninnis
Belgrave Edward Sutton Ninnis (22 June 1887 – 14 December 1912) was a British Lieutenant in the Royal Fusiliers and an Antarctic explorer who was a member of Sir Douglas Mawson's 1911 Australasian Antarctic Expedition.Charles Graham Robertson
Charles Graham Robertson VC MM (4 July 1879 – 10 May 1954) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
Robertson first served with the Imperial Yeomanry during the Second Boer War. Robertson was 38 years old, and a lance-corporal in the 10th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers, British Army during the First World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.
On 8/9 March 1918 west of Polderhoek Chateau, Belgium, Lance-Corporal Robertson having repelled a strong attack by the enemy, realised that he was being cut off and sent for reinforcements, while remaining at his post with only one man, firing his Lewis gun and killing large numbers of the enemy. No reinforcements arrived, so he withdrew, and then was forced to withdraw again to a defended post where he got on top of the parapet with a comrade, mounted his gun and continued firing. His comrade was almost immediately killed and he was severely wounded, but managed to crawl back with his gun, having exhausted his ammunition.He served in World War II in the Home Guard.Frederick William Palmer
Frederick William Palmer (11 November 1891 – 10 September 1955) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.George Jarratt
George Jarratt VC (20 July 1891 – 3 May 1917) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.James de Rothschild (politician)
James Armand Edmond de Rothschild DCM DL (1 December 1878 – 7 May 1957), sometimes known as Jimmy de Rothschild, was a French-born British Liberal politician and philanthropist, from the wealthy Rothschild international banking dynasty.
De Rothschild was the son of Edmond James de Rothschild of the French branch of family. He was educated at Lycée Louis-le-Grand in Paris and at Trinity College, Cambridge. He served in the First World War, at the outset as an enlisted man in the French Army then as an officer in The Royal Canadian Dragoons, and ended the war as an officer in the British Army, serving in Palestine as a major in the 39th Battalion, The Royal Fusiliers (part of the "Jewish Legion"). He was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal.
He was a keen follower of the turf and a racehorse owner. His 33-1 runner "Bomba" won the Ascot Gold Cup in 1909.
He married Dorothy Mathilde Pinto in 1913. She was 17 years old; he was 35.
He became a naturalised Briton in 1920, and in 1922 he inherited from Alice de Rothschild the Waddesdon Manor estate of his great-uncle Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild, the Liberal Member of Parliament (MP) for Aylesbury from 1885 to 1898.Jewish Legion
The Jewish Legion (1917–1921) is an unofficial name used to refer to five battalions of Jewish volunteers, the 38th to 42nd (Service) Battalions of the Royal Fusiliers, raised in the British Army to fight against the Ottoman Empire during the First World War.John Molyneux (VC)
John Molyneux VC (22 November 1890 – 25 March 1972) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal
Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal is a Primary Reserve infantry regiment of the Canadian Army.London Regiment (1908–1938)
"London Regiment" and "The London Regiment" redirect here. For the later regiment, see London Regiment (1993).The London Regiment was an infantry regiment in the British Army, part of the Territorial Force (later renamed the Territorial Army). The regiment saw distinguished service in World War I and was disbanded in 1938, shortly before World War II, when most of its battalions were converted to other roles or transferred elsewhere. The lineage of some (but not all) of its former battalions is continued by the current regiment of the same name.Mathew Hughes
Matthew Hughes VC (1822 – 9 January 1882) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
Hughes was approximately 33 years old and a private in 7th Regiment of Foot (now The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers), British Army when, during the Crimean War, he performed the acts that saw him recommended for the VC. The full citation was in the first set of awards of the VC published in the London Gazette on 24 February 1857, and read:
War Office, 24th February, 1857.
THE Queen has been graciously pleased to signify Her intention to confer the Decoration of the Victoria Cross on the undermentioned Officers and Men of Her Majesty's Navy and Marines, and Officers, Non-commissioned Officers, and Men of Her Majesty's Army, who have been recommended to Her Majesty for that Decoration, in accordance with the rules laid down in Her Majesty's Warrant of the 29th of January, 1856 on account of acts of bravery performed by them before the Enemy during the late War, as recorded against their several names, viz. :—
7th Regiment No. 1879 Private Mathew Hughes
Private Mathew Hughes, 7th Royal Fusiliers, was noticed by Colonel Campbell, 90th Light Infantry, on the 7th June, 1855, at the storming of the Quarries, for twice going for ammunition, under a heavy fire, across the open ground; he also went to the front, and brought in Private John Hampton, who was lying severely wounded; and on the 18th June, 1855, he volunteered to bring in Lieutenant Hobson, 7th Royal Fusiliers, who was lying severely wounded, and, in the act of doing so, was severely wounded himself.Hughes achieved the rank of sergeant that same year, but was later demoted.Maurice Dease
Maurice James Dease VC (28 September 1889 – 23 August 1914) was a British Army officer during the First World War. He was one of the first British officer battle casualties of the war and the first posthumous recipient of the Victoria Cross in the war.Robert Gee
Captain Robert Gee (7 May 1876 – 2 August 1960) was an English-Jewish recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.Royal Fusiliers War Memorial
The Royal Fusiliers War Memorial is a memorial in London that was erected in 1922 and is dedicated to the almost 22,000 soldiers of the Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment) who died during the First World War, including the units that served with the North Russia Relief Force until 1919. Further inscriptions added later commemorate the Royal Fusiliers who died during the Second World War and in subsequent campaigns.
The monument stands at Holborn Bar, one of the ancient entry points to the City of London, on a traffic island in the middle of High Holborn, on the City's boundary with the London Borough of Camden, denoted by a dragon boundary mark on either side of the street. The site is near High Holborn's junction with Gray's Inn Road, and is close to the historic Staple Inn.
The 8.5 feet (2.6 m) high bronze statue was designed by Albert Toft and cast by A.B. Burton at the Thames Ditton Foundry, with Cheadle and Harding as architects. It is said to be modelled on a Sergeant Cox, who served throughout the First World War. It depicts a private soldier in service dress, carrying a rifle with fixed bayonet in his right hand, facing along the road to the west to guard the entrance to the City of London. The statue stands on a 16.5 feet (5.0 m) pedestal made of Portland stone. A plaque on the east side of the pedestal records each of the Regular, Service and Territorial battalions of the regiment that served in the First World War.
An original intention to erect a memorial to the Royal London Fusiliers in a Royal Park shifted to Hounslow Barracks and then Holborn. A subscription list opened in 1919 and raised £3,000 by August 1920. The monument was unveiled by the Lord Mayor of London on 4 November 1922. The church of St Sepulchre-without-Newgate, about 450 yards (410 m) east of the memorial, was selected as the regimental chapel in 1946. The memorial became a Grade II listed structure in 1972, upgraded to Grade II* in July 2017.
An identical statue is one of five bronze figures by Toft forming a sculpture group for Oldham War Memorial, unveiled in 1923. The same single bronze figure was unveiled in 1932 as the memorial to the 41st Division at Flers, near the site of the Battle of Flers-Courcelette, where tanks were used in battle for the first time on 15 September 1916.Thomas Ashford
Thomas Elsdon Ashford (1859 – 21 February 1913) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.William Norman
William Norman VC (1832 – 13 March 1896) was an English recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
He was born in Warrington, Lancashire and enlisted as a private in the 7th Regiment of Foot (later the Royal Fusiliers) of the British Army on 15 May 1854. During the Crimean War the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC. On 19 December 1854 at Sebastopol, in the Crimea, Private Norman was placed on single sentry duty some distance in front of the advanced sentries of an outlying picquet in the White Horse Ravine, a post of much danger and requiring great vigilance. The Russian picquet was posted about 300 yards in front of him, and three Russians came reconnoitring under cover of the brushwood. Private Norman single-handedly took two of them prisoner without alarming the Russian picquet. He was decorated by Queen Victoria in Hyde Park on 26 June 1857.
He later served in the Umbeyla Campaign on the North-West Frontier in 1863 and achieved the rank of corporal. He left the Army in 1865.
He died on 13th March 1896 in Salford, Lancashire and is buried in a common grave at Weaste Cemetery, Salford. He was married with three children. His Victoria Cross and other medals are displayed at the Royal Fusiliers Museum in the Tower of London, England.
Regiments of Foot 1740–1881
Regimental titles in italics indicate they were disbanded or renumbered before 1881.
British infantry regiments World War I
|Territorial Battalions |
|Channel Islands Militia|