95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot

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For other units with the same regimental number, see 95th Regiment of Foot (disambiguation).
95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot
Active 1823–1881
Country United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Branch British Army
Type Line Infantry
Nickname(s) The Nails
Engagements Crimean War
Battle honours Alma
Central India

The 95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot was formed in 1823 after the 95th Rifles had been redesignated as The Rifle Brigade. In 1881, during the Childers Reforms, it was united with the 45th Nottinghamshire Regiment (Sherwood Foresters) to form the Sherwood Foresters.


The 95th Derbyshire was the sixth regiment to bear the number 95. After its formation the 95th Derbyshire saw service in Malta, the Ionian Islands, Ceylon and China.


In 1854 the regiment was sent to the Crimea where war had broken out between the French, Turkish and British forces against Russia. The regiment saw action in some of the most heavy fighting of that war. It was in the forefront of the attack across the Alma River and on to the heights beyond. Due to the heavy casualties suffered in this attack the Regimental colours, normally carried by officers, was handed to Private James Keenan, who planted it triumphantly on the earthwork of the Great Redoubt.[1] It has been said that just before the Battle of Inkerman an order was passed that colours were no longer to be carried into battle, but the 95th were in the front line positions when the Russian army attacked and were therefore the last British regiment to carry their colours in a major battle. However, this is not so. The last British regiment to carry colours into action was the 58th Foot (2nd Northamptonshire Regt.) at Langs Nek in 1881.[2]

After Inkerman the regiment was reduced to less than a hundred officers and men but continued to serve in the trenches which led to their nickname that: "there may be few of the 95th left but those are as hard as nails."

Sepoy Rebellion[edit]

Soon after the Crimean War ended the Sepoy Rebellion broke out in India in 1857. The 95th Regiment was on its way to South Africa and was diverted to India. Over the next sixteen months it marched 3,000 miles through jungle and desert and fought in fourteen actions. Private Bernard McQuirt won the Victoria Cross at Rowa. The 95th remained in India until 1870 after which they returned to England before becoming the 2nd Battalion of the newly formed Sherwood Foresters.

Battle honours[edit]

Victoria Cross[edit]

Colonels of the Regiment[edit]

Colonels of the Regiment were:[3]

The 95th Regiment of Foot[edit]

  • 1823–1829: Gen. Sir John Halkett

The 95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot - (1825)[edit]

The 95th (Derbyshire) Regiment - (1838)[edit]

References in fiction[edit]

Captain Anthony Morgan gained the rank of Captain in the service of the 95th Regiment. He lived at Bunalun, Skibbereen, County Cork, Ireland. He is the central character in the novels of Patrick Mercer entitled "To Do and Die" (set in the Crimea) and "Dust and Steel" (the Indian Mutiny). Morgan was, in fact, a real person.


  1. ^ "WFR Museum The Battle of Alma". Retrieved 9 January 2011. 
  2. ^ The First Boer War. Joseph Lehmann
  3. ^ "95th (Derbyshire) Regiment of Foot". regiments.org. Retrieved 18 July 2016. 
  4. ^ The London Gazette: no. 20844. p. 1366. 7 April 1848. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  5. ^ The London Gazette: no. 21109. p. 1812. 28 June 1850. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  6. ^ The London Gazette: no. 21507. p. 3817. 30 December 1853. Retrieved 31 October 2009.

External links[edit]