The Queen's Royal Hussars (QRH) were formed in 1993 from two armoured regiments created in 1958 - the Queen's Own Hussars (QOH) and the Queen's Royal Irish Hussars (QRIH) - amalgamations of four hussar regiments which had evolved from dragoons raised in the turbulent days of the seventeenth century: the 3rd (King's Own), 4th (Queen's Own), 7th (Queen's Own) and the 8th (King's Royal Irish). The Queen's title was first conferred on the 7th Dragoons in 1727 with the accession of George II. The Royal title came from the 8th Light Dragoons in 1777. Regimental headquarters are at the Regent's Park Barracks in London.
The scarlet peaked cap, a light cavalry custom, was common to both the QOH and the QRIH. The cap badge is made up of the 7th Hussars' Queen's cypher with the royal crest and Irish harp of the 8th superimposed, and a title scroll beneath.
8th Hussars at Bognor, 5 June 1944, prior to leaving for their D-Day dispersal area; some of the officers are wearing the green and gold 'tent hat'. (Bill Bellamy)
The galloping horse collar badge was inherited from the 3rd Hussars by way of the QOH, both of which used it as their cap badge. This Horse of Hanover was authorised to the 3rd Dragoons with their King's title in 1714, when George I of Hanover came to the throne.
The scarlet and silver sleeve badge also came from the QOH. This, the Maid of Warsaw, was awarded to the 7th Hussars by the commander of the 2nd Polish Corps in the Second World War to commemorate the bravery of the regiment when supporting the Poles in the Italian campaign of 1944-5.
Items of QRIH dress perpetuated in the QRH are the green 'tent' hat adopted by the 8th Hussars officers in 1909, green berets and pullovers, and the double chevron worn by lance corporals (8th Hussars).
No. 1 dress 'blues' are light cavalry pattern, regimentally distinguished by the scarlet collar allowed for the 3rd Hussars' uniform in 1861. The Victorian hussar uniform did not have coloured facings, but the 3rd and 13th were permitted to wear collars of their respective facing colours.
Full dress is basic hussar pattern with the distinctions of the senior 3rd Regiment: a Garter blue busby bag and scarlet collar. The busby plume, however, is white and scarlet as worn in the 7th and 8th Hussars.
Irish pipers introduced into the QRIH in 1987 wore a curious green hussar-corded 'doublet' with the traditional Irish saffron kilt and cloak. A plain green doublet replaced the corded type soon after, and pipers and drummers were to be seen in a green caubeen adorned with the regimental white/scarlet hackle.
The regimental quick march combines Von Suppe's Light Cavalry of the QOH with St Patrick 5 Day of the QRIH.
The slow marches of the antecedent regiments together form the regimental slow march: The 3rd Hussars Slow March, which includes General Bland's Inspection March composed in 1745 (probably by his daughter) in honour of the regiment's conduct at Dettingen; Litany of Loretto, based on thirteenth-century Italian plainsong and adopted by the 4th Hussars in 1890; Garb of Old Gaul, marking the Scottish origins of the 7th Hussars; and March of the Scottish Archers from the 8th Hussars.
The regimental trot Encore and the canter gallop Bonnie Dundee are inherited from the QOH.
The regimental motto, Mente et manu (With mind and hand), which comes from QRIH, has graced the badge of the 4th Hussars since 1906. The regimental journal The Crossbelts is named after the journal of the QRIH, inspired by an old nickname of the 8th. At the Battle of Almenara in 1710, Pepper's Dragoons (later the 8th) overthrew a body of Spanish horse and marked the victor)' by wearing the Spaniards' sword belts across their own pouch belts in the manner prescribed only for regiments of horse. The custom was maintained for half a century, so the 8th Dragoons achieved some notoriety in the army as 'The Crossbelt Dragoons'. Battle honour days celebrated in the QRH are Dettingen (27 June), Balaklava (25 October) and Alamein (2 November). Balaklava Day commemorates the 4th and 8th in the Charge of the Light Brigade, and Alamein Day when the 3rd, 4th and 8th Hussars fought in tanks on the Western Desert in 1942. The 3rd Hussars kept 23 October as Alamein Day in memory of their near annihilation when fighting alongside the 2nd New Zealand Division. The fern leaf emblem of the NZ Division was permitted to be carried by the 3rd on their tanks, as the QRH do today.
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