Unofficial history of the Australian & New Zealand Armed Services 

 Search  &  Help Recruits Military History Hall of Heroes Indigenous Slouch hat + ARMY Today Uniforms Badges

 Colours & Flags Weapons Food Equipment Assorted Medals Armour Navy Air Power 

Nurses - Medical Tributes Poetry - Music Posters & Signs Leaders The Enemy Humour Links Killing Anzac

Click to escape. Subject to Crown Copyright.
Category: Lt Horse Regiments

Click to go up one level

4th Light Horse Regiment (Victoria) 

[4th Light Horse Brigade]

Served in Egypt, Gallipoli, Sinai, Palestine, Western Front

The main body of the regiment was attached to 1st Light Horse Brigade March 1916. 

It was redesignated 3rd Camel Regiment September 1916 but a shortage of camels prevented its transformation into a camel regiment. Resumed its old designation and brought up to strength again in February 1917 and assigned to the reformed 4th Light Horse Brigade. 

Badge displayed either unofficial or CMF.

  • Formed Victoria August 1914 for 1st Division. 
    • Departed Melbourne on Wiltshire 18 October 1914. 
    • B squadron sent to the Western Front in March 1916 
      • and formed part of I Anzac Corps Mounted Regiment and later 
    • II Anzac Corps Mounted Regiment from 2 July 1916. 
    • D Squadron formed at Tel El Kebir, Egypt 11 March 1916 for service in France where it formed part of II Anzac Corps Mounted Regiment from 2 July 1916. 
    • B and D Squadrons, assigned to II Anzac Corps Mounted Regiment, wore its patch  
  • 1st Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Barunga 22 December 1914, 
  • 2nd Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Katuna 3 February 1915, 
  • 3rd Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Katuna 3 February 1915, 
  • 4th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Wiltshire 13 April 1915, 
  • 5th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Palermo 7 May 1915, 
  • 6th Reinforcements departed Sydney on Ceramic 25 June 1915, 
  • 7th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Persia 10 August 1915, 
  • 8th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Kyarra 20 August 1915, 
  • 9th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Hororata 27 September 1915, 
  • 10th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Ballarat 9 September 1915, 
  • 11th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Palermo 29 October 1915, 
  • 12th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Ceramic 23 November 1915, 
  • 13th Reinforcements departed Sydney on Runic 20 January 1916, 
  • 14th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Themistocles 28 January 1916, 
  • 15th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Katuna 9 March 1916 
  • 16th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Itria 18 April 1916, 
  • 17th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Clan MacCorquodale 6 May 1916, 
  • 18th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Runic 20 June 1916, 
  • 19th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Mongolia 11 Ju1y 1916 
  • 20th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Malwa 25 July 1916 
  • 21st Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Nestor 29 September 1916, 
  • 22nd Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Clan MacCorquodale 19 September 1916, 
  • 23rd Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Persic 22 December 1916, 
  • 24th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Orsova 16 December 1916, 
  • 25th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Omrah 17 January 1917, 
  • 26th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Ascanius 11 May 1917, 
  • 27th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Boorara 10 May 1917 and Suevic 21 June 1917, 
  • 28th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Port Lincoln 22 June 1917, 
  • 29th Reinforcements departed Sydney on Anchisses 8 August 1917 
  • and Melbourne on Kyarra 7 September 1917, 
  • 30th Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Commonwealth 2 November 1917 
    • and Nestor 21 November 1917, 
  • 31st Reinforcements departed Melbourne on Ulysses 22 December 1917 
  • 32nd Reinforcements departed Sydney on Wiltshire 2 February 1918, 
  • 33rd Reinforcements departed Sydney on Canberra 16 November 1917, 
  • 34th Reinforcements departed Sydney on Ulysses 19 December 1917.

Unidentified Lighthorseman from 4ALH Regt

968 Sergeant Herbert Charles Robertson MM, 4th Australian Light Horse Regiment. He also served in 4 (Qld Imperial Bushmen Contingent) in the Boer War. Australian Commonwealth Horse, who all enlisted in South Australia. He is wearing the Queens's South African campaign medal. A small badge in the form of the letter "A" on unit colour patche denotes that the wearer had taken part in the 1915 Gallipoli campaign.

Battle Honours:  

  • Anzac, 
  • Defence of Anzac, 
  • Suvla, 
  • Sari Bair, 
  • Gallipoli 1915, 
  • Egypt 1915-17, 
  • Gaza-Beersheba, 
  • El Mughar, 
  • Nebi Samwil, 
  • Jerusalem, 
  • Jordan (Es Salt), 
  • Megiddo, 


  • Nablus, 
  • Sharon, 
  • Damascus, 
  • Palestine 1917-18, 
  • Messines 1917, 
  • Ypres 1917, 
  • Broodeseinde, 
  • Passchendale, 
  • Lys, 
  • Kemmel, 
  • Marne 1918, 
  • Tardenois, 
  • France and Flanders 1916-18

many details on this page from Ross Mallett's site

4th Light Horse Regiment

The 4th Light Horse Regiment was formed as the divisional cavalry regiment for the 1st Australian Division on 11 August 1914. Belying traditional stereotypes, over 20 per cent of the original regiment were city dwellers from Melbourne. The regiment sailed from Melbourne on 19 October 1914 and disembarked in Egypt on 10 December.

The light horse were considered unsuitable for the initial operations at Gallipoli, but were subsequently deployed without their horses to reinforce the infantry. The 4th Light Horse Regiment landed on 22 and 24 May and its squadrons were initially scattered to reinforce the infantry battalions already ashore. The regiment was not reunited until 11 June. Much of the regiment’s time at Gallipoli was spent defending the precarious ANZAC position, most frequently around Ryrie’s Post, but its squadrons were involved in several minor attacks. It left the peninsula on 11 December 1915.

Returning to Egypt, a fourth squadron – “D Squadron” – was formed for the regiment and it was promptly detailed, along with B Squadron, for duty as divisional cavalry for the 1st and 3rd Australian Divisions on the Western Front. These two squadrons arrived in France in March and June 1916 and would eventually become part of the II ANZAC Mounted Regiment.

A new B Squadron was formed for the 4th Light Horse in Egypt, and the regiment spent the remainder of 1916 engaged on rear area security tasks in the Suez Canal Zone. In April 1917 it moved up into the Sinai desert in the wake of the main British and dominion advance, but continued to undertake security duties.

The regiment’s first major battle would also become that which made it legendary. On 31 October 1917 an attack was launched to outflank the Turkish bastion of Gaza, against which two previous attacks had failed, by capturing another heavily defended town to the east – Beersheba. A deteriorating tactical situation late on the first day of the operation caused the 4th and its sister regiment, the 12th, to be unleashed on Beersheba at the gallop – an action which has gone down in history as the charge of Beersheba.

After Gaza fell on 7 November 1917, Turkish resistance in southern Palestine collapsed. The 4th Light Horse participated in the pursuit that followed, and then spent the first months of 1918 resting and training. It moved into the Jordan Valley in time to participate in the Es Salt raid between 29 April and 4 May.

In August, the regiment was issued with swords and trained in traditional cavalry tactics in preparation for the next offensive against the Turks. This was launched along the Palestine coast on 19 September 1918 – its objective, Damascus. The mounted forces penetrated deep into the Turkish rear areas severing roads, railways and communications links. On 1 October 1918, a patrol of the 4th Light Horse, commanded by Sergeant Frank Organ, were the first allied troops to enter Damascus. 

The regiment was soon involved in the next stage of the advance and was on its way to Home when the Turks surrendered on 30 October. Some long-serving troopers began to embark for home soon after and while the rest awaited their turn, the 4th Light Horse were called back to operational duty to quell the Egyptian revolt that erupted in March 1919; order was restored in little over a month. The regiment sailed for home on 15 June 1919. text from AWM

  •  105 killed, 332 wounded (Gallipoli, Egypt, Sinai and Palestine only.)
  • Decorations

    • 4 DSO, 1 bar
    • 1 OBE
    • 6 MC, 1 bar
    • 14 DCM
    • 43 MM, 1 bar
    • 1 MSM
    • 31 MID
    • 4 foreign awards

Statistics : Over 35 million page visitors since  11 Nov 2002  



 Search   Help     Guestbook   Get Updates   Last Post    The Ode      FAQ     Digger Forum

Click for news

Digger History:  an unofficial history of the Australian & New Zealand Armed Forces