Click to escape. Subject to Crown Copyright. Do not copy or use without approval.
Category: Conflicts/WW1/Lt Horse

7th Light Horse Regiment A.I.F., 1914-19

After the outbreak of World War One, 7th Light Horse Regiment was formed at Liverpool and Holsworthy, near Sydney in October and November 1915, as part of 2nd Australian Light Horse Brigade. 

The first commanding officer was Lt Col J. M. Arnott of 11th Light Horse (C.M.F.) and Major G. M. Macarthur-Onslow of 9th Light Horse (C.M.F.) was appointed 2nd-in-command.

The Regiment arrived in Egypt on 1st February, 1915 and in May, the Brigade was ordered to Gallipoli as a dismounted force, the 7th disembarking on the 19th. 

From then on it was in the fighting until the evacuation of the Peninsula in mid-December.

For a period, the squadrons were distributed to the battalions of 3rd Infantry Brigade; later the Regiment operated as a complete unit. It was at such historical places as Bolton's Ridge, Tasmania Post, Chatham's Post, Balkan Pits and Lone Pine.

During August, Lt Col Arnott was evacuated sick and was succeeded in command by Major (later Lt Col) Macarthur-Onslow. After Gallipoli, the Light Horse were re-horsed in Egypt and 2nd Light Horse Brigade was allotted to Anzac Mounted Division, with which the 7th Regiment remained until the end of hostilities. In Egypt, Sinai and Palestine, it gained battle honours and the following remarks by Lt Gen Sir Harry Chauvel, who commanded the Desert Mounted Corps, are appropriate:
"At the Battle of Romani it was largely due to its stubborn defence and spirited counter-attack, under the leadership of Lt Col G. Macarthur-Onslow that the victory was so complete.

At the first Battle of Gaza, it was this Regiment that led the Anzac Mounted Division through the night to its position in rear of the city and which captured the new Commander of the Gaza Defence, who was on his way up to take his command. During the Battle of Beersheba and the pursuit which followed, the Regiment sustained the fine traditions it had already established for dash and gallantry. In the raids across Jordan and throughout the long summer of 1918 in the Jordan Valley, it bore its share of the fighting and the hardships, from the bitter cold of Gilead in mid-winter to the scorching heat of Jericho in July.

Under Lt Col J. D. Richardson, it played a brilliant part in the final victory which destroyed three Turkish Armies and brought Germany's Allied out of the War."

Decorations and awards gained by the Regiment were as follows: CMG - 2; DSO - 5; MC - 8; Order of the Nile - 4; DCM - 8; MM - 20; Serbian Medal - 5; Mentioned in Despatches - 41; Complimentary Mention (Anzac) - 1; Mentioned in Divisional Orders (Anzac) - 1.

A full narrative has been given in book form - "The 7th Light Horse Regiment, A.I.F., 1914-1919" by Lt Col J. D. Richardson, DSO; Publishers E. N. Birks, Radcliffe Press, Sydney.

The following are the Battle Honours awarded to the Regiment, only those in block letters being borne on the Guidon which was received in 1928 : 

  • Anzac, 
  • Sulva, 
  • Gallipoli, 1915, 
  • ROMANI, 
  • EGYPT, 1915-17, 
  • El Mughar, 
  • Nebi Samwil, 
  • Nablus, 
  • PALESTINE, 1917-18.

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