Q (Sanna's Post) Battery Royal Artillery

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Q (Sanna's Post) Battery Royal Horse Artillery
Q (Sanna's Post) Battery Royal Artillery
Active1 March 1824 – present
Country United Kingdom
AllegianceFlag of the British East India Company (1801).svg Hon East India Coy (till 1858)
 United Kingdom (post 1858)
Branch British Army
Part of5th Regiment Royal Artillery
LocationCatterick Garrison
Nickname(s)The Hedgehogs
AnniversariesSanna's Post Day – 31 March
DecorationsSanna's Post
Battle honoursUbique
Edmund Phipps-Hornby VC

Q (Sanna's Post) Battery is the Headquarters Battery of 5th Regiment Royal Artillery in the Royal Artillery. It currently serves as the Headquarters Battery for the British Army's Surveillance and Target Acquisition regiment.

The name Sanna's Post was taken following the actions of the Battery during an engagement at Sanna's Post during the Second Boer War.

Battery history[edit]

Q Battery, Royal Horse Artillery was originally raised in Poona, India on 1 March 1824 as 3rd Troop, Bombay Horse Artillery, part of the Bombay Presidency Army of the Honourable East India Company.[1] Between 1838 and 1857 the Troop saw action in the first Anglo-Afghan War, the First Anglo-Sikh War, the Second Anglo-Sikh War, and the Anglo-Persian War. In 1858 the Battery saw service during the Indian mutiny.

As a result of the Indian Rebellion of 1857, the British Crown took direct control of India from the East India Company on 1 November 1858 under the provisions of the Government of India Act 1858.[2] The Presidency armies transferred to the direct authority of the British Crown and its European units were transferred to the British Army. Henceforth artillery, the mutineers most effective arm, was to be the sole preserve of the British Army (with the exception of certain Mountain Artillery batteries). On 19 February 1862, the Bombay Horse Artillery transferred to the Royal Artillery as its 4th Horse Brigade[a] and 3rd Troop became C Battery, 4th Horse Brigade, RA.[1]

A reorganization of the Horse Artillery on 13 April 1864 saw 1st Brigade split as A and B Brigades, 2nd Brigade become C Brigade, 3rd become D, 4th become E, and 5th become F Horse Brigade, Royal Artillery.[4] As the battery's designation was tied to the brigade it was assigned to, it was redesignated on the same date as C Battery, E Horse Brigade, RA.[1] From 1866, the term "Royal Horse Artillery" appeared in Army List[5] hence the battery was designated C Battery, E Brigade, RHA from about this time.

Between 1864 and 1889 the Battery's title changed a further 5 times. In 1889 the Battery assumed the title of Q Battery Royal Artillery.

The Battery next saw service in the Boer war between 1899 and 1901. On 31 March 1900 the Battery had its finest hour when it saved its guns and the majority of General Broadwater's force from a vicious Boer ambush at Koorn Spruit, near Sanna's Post. As the Battery galloped away to the rear in line, the Boers, seeing that part of their prey was escaping, opened fire with rifles from the edge of the Spruit. Q Battery's guns were served for four hours in that exposed position, subjected all the time to continuous rifle fire at 1,000 yards range – it must be remembered that at the time the guns had no shields![citation needed] The Battery fought with such collective gallantry and skill that Field Marshal Lord Roberts VC, directed that 4 Victoria Crosses should be awarded to the Battery,one to an officer, one to an NCO, one to a Gunner & one to a Driver. It is the most highly decorated action in the history of the Royal Regiment of Artillery. In addition 3 Distinguished Conduct Medals were also awarded. In 1926 the Battery was granted the honour title "Sanna's Post".

During the First World War the Battery saw continuous action on the western front. At the end of the Great War the Battery's name changed again twice before being renamed Q Battery Royal Field Artillery in 1924.

Recent operations[edit]

Members attached to 32Hy Regt Ra for 1st Gulf War

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The original Horse Brigade Royal Artillery formed 1st Horse Brigade RA, the 1st Brigade Bengal Horse Artillery became 2nd Horse Brigade RA, the Madras Horse Artillery became 3rd Horse Brigade RA, the Bombay Horse Artillery became 4th Horse Brigade RA and the 2nd Brigade Bengal Horse Artillery became 5th Horse Brigade RA. The 3rd Brigade Bengal Horse Artillery was split between 2nd and 5th Horse Brigades RA. These brigades performed an administrative, rather than tactical, role.[3]


  1. ^ a b c Clarke 1993, p. 108
  2. ^ "Official, India". World Digital Library. 1890–1923. Retrieved 2013-05-30.
  3. ^ Frederick 1984, pp. 428–429
  4. ^ Clarke 1993, p. 53
  5. ^ Frederick 1984, p. 431


  • Becke, Major A.F. (1935). Order of Battle of Divisions Part 1. The Regular British Divisions. London: His Majesty's Stationery Office. ISBN 1-871167-09-4.
  • 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.
  • Frederick, J.B.M. (1984). Lineage Book of British Land Forces 1660–1978. Wakefield, Yorkshire: Microform Academic Publishers. ISBN 1-85117-009-X.
  • Order of Battle of the British Armies in France, November 11th, 1918. France: General Staff, GHQ. 1918.

External links[edit]