"At a mile distant their thousand hooves were stuttering thunder, coming at a rate that frightened a man - they were an awe inspiring sight, galloping through the red haze - knee to knee and horse to horse - the dying sun glinting on bayonet points..." Trooper Ion Idriess
The Australian Light Horse Studies Centre aims to present an accurate history as chroniclers of early Australian military developments from 1899 to 1920.
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AIF, MEF, EEF & DMC, The Indian Subcontinent, Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps, Outline Topic: AIF - DMC - Indian
AIF, MEF, EEF & DMC
The Indian Subcontinent
Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps, Outline
Hat Badge of the Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps
Unitas Salus Nostra - Unity, Our Salvation
South Africa, 1902
Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps
In 1900 the Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps was established with headquarters in Kandy; the officers and other ranks were made up of Europeans, who were tea and rubber planters in the central highlands of Ceylon. It’s first Commanding Officer was Colonel R.N. Farquharson, a retired Naval Captain. The regiment was a volunteer regiment mobilized under internal emergencies or for deployments overseas.
The regiment's first deployment was in 1902 when a detachment was sent to South Africa arriving just before hostilities ended, not having experienced combat in the Second Boer War. The overall conduct of Ceylon troops received accolades from General Kitchener, Chief of Staff to Lord Roberts in South Africa, who affirmed, “The Ceylon Contingent did very good work in South Africa I only wish we had more of them.”
In the First World War the regiment sent a force of 8 officers and 229 other ranks commanded by Major J. Hall Brown. The unit sailed for Egypt on October 1914, and was deployed in defence of the Suez Canal. After which the unit was transferred to the Australia New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) and was in 1915 dispatched to Anzac Cove (‘Z’ Beach) on the Gallipoli Peninsula. The CPRC also performed operational duties as guards to ANZAC headquarter staff, including the General Officer Commanding ANZAC, Lieutenant General William Birdwood, who remarked, “I have an excellent guard of Ceylon Planters who are such a nice lot of fellows.” According to its onetime Commanding Officer (CO), Colonel T.Y. Wright (1904-1912), the CPRC had sustained overall losses of 80 killed and 99 wounded in the First World War.
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