A Battery (The Chestnut Troop) Royal Horse Artillery

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

A Battery (The Chestnut Troop) Royal Horse Artillery
Active1 February 1793 – present
Country United Kingdom
Branch British Army
Part of1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery
AnniversariesFormation Day (1793) 1st February
Battle honoursUbique
Hew Dalrymple Ross

A Battery (The Chestnut Troop) Royal Horse Artillery is the senior Battery in the British Army's Royal Artillery and is part of 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery. The Chestnut Troop is currently based in Assaye Barracks in Tidworth Camp.

Current Role[edit]

The unit is currently equipped as a Close Support Artillery Battery, with the AS-90 Self-propelled gun.



1793 - A Troop Royal Horse Artillery was raised as The Chestnut Troop at Woolwich on 1 February 1793. Equipped with Chestnut horses from the start, Lord Wellington asked of the whereabouts of “The Chestnut Troop” during the Battle of Waterloo. This unofficial title stuck until Edward VII sanctioned, in Army Order 135, that the Battery be designated A Battery (The Chestnut Troop) Royal Horse Artillery. This honour title is unique as it is not associated with one particular incident, and affords "The Chestnut Troop" the privilege to be known as such outside the Royal Regiment of Artillery. As the senior Battery within the whole of the Royal Regiment of Artillery, it takes position at the Right of the Line on the parade.

A Troop was raised as the first fully self-contained and fully mounted unit equipped with six, six-pounder guns.

19th century[edit]

  • 1798 – The Troop first saw action in the Irish Rebellion
  • 1799 – Saw action in the Netherlands
  • 1806Captain Hew Ross assumed command of the Troop, which lasted for an unrivalled period of 19 years, through campaigns in Spain, Portugal, France and at Waterloo. Captain Ross went on to be knighted and become the first ever Gunner Field Marshal.
  • 1809 onwards – The Troop fought in the Peninsula War. Following its exploits in Portugal was a protracted period of peace
  • 1855 to 1856Crimean War.

Until the turn of the 20th century the Troop served in both the UK and India, before serving in the South African War.

World War One[edit]

1914 – The outbreak of the First World War saw the Troop deployed to France. It served throughout the War, firing its last round at Orrs on 4 November 1918.


Training with a 3.7 inch Mountain Howitzer c. 1938

In 1919 the Chestnut Troop was deployed in North West Persia as part of the Norperforce.[1] They were later deployment to Basra in 1921. In 1938 the Chestnut Troop became part of 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery which involved, at the outset, the formation of a Battery as a 12 gun composite Battery.

World War Two[edit]

  • 1939 – World War Two saw the Troop deployed to France, serving until the evacuation from Dunkirk.
  • 1940 – Thereafter the Battery was sent to Egypt as part of the Desert Rats.
  • 1941 – Involved in the siege of Tobruck. The Battery was then reorganised to become The Chestnut Troop once again and served continuously in the Western Desert in
  • 1942 – El Alamein. After El Alamein elements of the troop were seconded to the newly formed "Long Range Desert Group" because of their intimate knowledge of the desert and survival skills.[2]
  • 1942 onwards – The Regiment was then re-equipped with 105mm SP guns before fighting in Italy for the rest of the war.

Cold War[edit]

After the War the Troop served in Egypt, the UK and Germany.

  • 1965 to 1967 – Aden

Recent and Current Conflicts[edit]

Northern Ireland[edit]

It completed four tours of Northern Ireland throughout the 1970s.

Persian Gulf War[edit]

  • 1990 – Members of the Chestnut Troop deployed on Operation GRANBY to Iraq as A/B/E Battery.
  • 1992 – Battery moved to Assaye Barracks in Tidworth.

Balkan Wars[edit]

  • 1996 – The Battery served in Bosnia as a part of IFOR.
  • 1998 – The Battery served again in Bosnia as a part of IFOR.
  • 2000 – The Battery served in Bosnia as a part of KFOR.

Operation TELIC in Iraq[edit]

  • 2004 – In April The Chestnut Troop deployed to Basra as part of the 1 CHESHIRE Battle Group, and was tasked with developing the Iraqi Police Service within the City. Changes after the transition of authority in late June saw the Battery consolidate in a single location as part of the 1 RHA Battle Group and tackle Provincial Police Departments.
  • 2007 – The Battery deployed to Basra on Operation Telic 10. The Battery integrated a Platoon from the 3rd Brigade 3rd Infantry Division, 1-10th Field Artillery to assist in counter-indirect fire missions where they employed both AS90 and M109A6 Paladin to provide fire. During a 'slow period' the British Artillerymen soundly defeated the American Platoon in Football (Soccer).


Operation HERRICK in Afghanistan[edit]

  • 2009 – A Battery served in Sangin as part of 3 Rifles Battlegroup

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Cecil John Edmonds (2009), East and West of Zagros, Brill Academic Publishers, OCLC 593346009
  2. ^ Major John Crowe Royal Horse Artillery (retired)


  • Clarke, W.G. (1993). Horse Gunners: The Royal Horse Artillery, 200 Years of Panache and Professionalism. Woolwich: The Royal Artillery Institution. ISBN 09520762-0-9.

External links[edit]