Queen's Royal Irish Hussars
|The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars|
|Type||Royal Armoured Corps|
|Role||Main Battle Tank|
|Motto||Mente et Manu (By Hand and Mind)|
|March||The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars|
|Anniversaries||St Patrick's Day, Balaklava Day|
Sir Winston Churchill
The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars, abbreviated as QRIH, was a cavalry regiment of the British Army formed from the amalgamation of the 4th Queen's Own Hussars and the 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars in Hohne, West Germany in 1958.
The Regimental Journal and the Polo Team were nicknamed 'The Crossbelts', which was taken from a nickname earned by the 8th Hussars at the Battle of Alemenaro in 1710. Many customs and practices of the two predecessor regiments were retained by the QRIH, such as the green and gold tent hat worn without a badge which was used by officers.
The regiment was amalgamated with The Queen's Own Hussars on 1 September 1993, to form The Queen's Royal Hussars (The Queen's Own and Royal Irish).
The regiment moved to Aden in 1961, reroling as an armoured reconnaissance regiment and after serving there against insurgents for almost a year, sailed on the SS Oxfordshire to the newly-independent nation of Malaysia. It was based in Ipoh, Malaysia from October 1962, and saw limited action against Indonesian insurgents, seeing service in Brunei and Sarawak on jungle operations during the Indonesian confrontation, and in Singapore as part of the Internal Security Forces. Returning to West Germany in 1964 the regiment was based in Wolfenbüttel, near the East German border as part of NATO forward defences. Further deployments were:
- 1968-1970: United Kingdom, Recce Role at Perham Down until 1969, then RAC Centre regiment, Bovington.
- 1974-1977: Cyprus, whilst based in Paderborn, as part of the UN peacekeeping force following the invasion of the northern part of the island by Turkey.
- 1979-1982: United Kingdom, including short tours to Rhodesia and Cyprus. Main body of the regiment was based at Bhurtpore Barracks in Tidworth as the UKLF (reserve) tank regiment, with C Squadron detached to the School of Infantry at Warminster where it was used in the role of RAC Demonstration Squadron.
- 1982-1988: Münster, York Barracks, as part of the 4th Armoured Brigade, 3rd Armoured Division, British Army of the Rhine. During this posting the regiment celebrated its Tercentenary and was presented with a new Guidon by HRH Prince Phillip.
- United Kingdom 1988-1990 - Half the regiment to Cambrai Barracks, Catterick, RAC Training Regiment. The other half as RAC Centre Regiment, Bovington.
- Iraq (1991), Gulf War (whilst based at Fallingbostel)and under the command of Lt Col Arthur Denaro following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, spearheading the 7th Armoured Brigade 100 hour advance, reprising the role of Desert Rats as performed by both predecessor regiments in World War 2 in the North African Campaign.
Victoria Crosses include:
- James Champion - Full list of medals 
- Joseph Ward
- John Pearson
- Samuel Parkes
- Clement Walker Heneage
- George Hollis
There is a combined total of 538 years service from the formation of the parent regiments until the amalgamation which was to create the QRIH. During this time 102 battle honours were awarded to the regiments. 40 of these appeared on the QRIH Guidon.
Although having re-equipped on several occasions to deal with emergency postings such as Malaya, Aden, Cyprus and Northern Ireland, the regiment's main role was almost always as a Main Battle Tank regiment of the Royal Armoured Corps.
Post amalgamation, the two types used by the regiment were primarily Centurion and Chieftain. As with all MBT regiments however the QRIH did have other armoured vehicles in service in parallel with their main role. These included:
During the first Gulf War when the regiment deployed it did so with, what was then, the latest British main battle tank, Challenger or as it is now referred to since the introduction of the second of the Challenger series Challenger 1.
In addition, for command, control and administration, some "soft skinned" vehicles were also in use:
Some vehicles were modified for specific use with an armoured regiment. Some 4 ton trucks for example had a modular set of fuel tanks with dispensing nozzles to increase the speed at which tanks could be refueled during combat (much faster and cleaner than emptying Jerrycans of fuel into the 220 gallon fuel tanks). Others even more notably such as the Armoured Recovery Vehicle (ARV) used by the mechanics and fitters from the REME who were responsible for the recovery and repair of broken down or damaged vehicles.
As with all armoured regiments the structure was based around the Squadron concept. The number of troops in a squadron changed and so did the number of squadrons but the basic premise remained and still remains the same.
Headquarter Squadron (HQ Sqn) - command, control and administration. Recce and Guided Weapons troops were also a component part of HQ Sqn.
A Squadron (D of E Sqn) - Sabre*
B Squadron (B Sqn) - Sabre
C Squadron (C Sqn) - Sabre
D Squadron (D Sqn) - Sabre
* The designation "Sabre" indicates a fighting squadron, a throwback to the days of horses.
The Regimental Quick March was "The Queen's Royal Irish Hussars" (an arrangement of St Patrick's Day, Berkley's Dragoons and The Galloping Queen's Hussar, preceded by the regimental trumpet call).
The regimental slow march was "Litany of Lorretto".
The regimental Hymn was Abide With Me
The regimental song was "The Galloping Queen's Hussar" (A version of the "Galloping 8th Hussar" from the 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars):
- The Regimental Song
I'm a soldier in the Queen's Army
I'm galloping Queen's Hussar
I've sailed the ocean wide and blue,
I'm a chap who knows a thing or two,
Been in many a tight corner,
Shown the enemy who we are,
I can ride a horse,
Go on a spree, or sing a comic song,
And that denotes a Queen's Hussar!
The regiment celebrated two special days in each year. St Patrick's Day and Balaklava Day (celebrating the Charge of the Light Brigade). On most occasions these were holidays for all soldiers with sporting activities during the day and celebrations in the evening. These holidays began with the quaint tradition of senior nco's serving Gunfire  (a mixture of tea and rum) to junior soldiers as a morning wake-up drink. During active operations the festivities were suspended but the occasion always marked in some way. On St Patrick's Day each soldier would wear a sprig of shamrock, normally presented by the honorary colonel, Prince Phillip who had assumed the role upon the death of Sir Winston Churchill.
The regimental motto was the Latin Mente et Manu of the 4th Hussars, meaning With Mind and Hand which was inscribed on the cap badge and regimental crest. The motto of the 8th Hussars was also retained Pristinae Virtutis Memores (Mindful of former valour).
Colonels in Chief
The first Colonel in Chief was Sir Winston Churchill who was known as the "Greatest Hussar of all time". After his death in 1965 Cornets from the Regiment stood vigil over his catafaulque in Westminster and carried his coffin to the funeral train and to the graveside. The Colonelcy then passed to Prince Phillip who retained the position until amalgamation.
The last Colonel of the Regiment was Major General John Strawson, the eminent military author and historian. Former commanding officer of the 4th Hussars and the Queen's Royal Irish Hussars who saw service in various theatres during World War Two.
- The Queen's Royal Hussars - Regimental Association
- Inventory Search Results | Books & Publications | Research | National Army Museum, London
- [ARCHIVED CONTENT] Object moved
- The Queens Royal Irish Hussars | British Hussar Regiments
- Queen's Royal Irish Hussars | Famous Units | Research | National Army Museum, London
- The Queen's Royal Hussars - Regimental Association
- BBC ON THIS DAY | 24 | 1965: Memories of Churchill's funeral
- Inside The Age
- John Strawson - David Higham Associates[dead link]
- The Queen's Royal Hussars
- Eastbourne Redoubt (Eastbourne Redoubt Fortress Military Museum, Home of the Regimental Museum)
- 24 National Virtual Museum Website[dead link]
- 4th(Queen's Own)Hussars, 8th(King's Royal Irish) Hussars Victoria Crosses