Duke of Wellington's Regiment (West Riding)

The Duke of Wellington's Regiment (West Riding), also referred to as the West Riding Regiment, was a line infantry regiment of the British Army.


The regiment traced its roots back to the 1700s and was known as the 33rd Regiment of Foot until 1853, when Queen Victoria renamed it the 33rd (or The Duke of Wellington's) Regiment in honour of the first Duke of Wellington who had died the previous year.

Following the Childers Reforms[1] in the early 1880s, the 33rd was amalgamated with the 76th Regiment of Foot (Halifax) to form the 1st & 2nd Regular Battalions of the Duke of Wellington's Regiment. The reforms also redesignated the 6th West York Militia as the 3rd & 4th Militia Battalions of the regiment. At the same time, three local Rifle Volunteer Corps (RVC) battalions — based at Halifax, Huddersfield, and Skipton — became the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Volunteer Battalions of the Duke of Wellington's Regiment

The 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions served in the Boer War (1899-1902).

Under the Haldane Reforms[2] of 1908, which created the Territorial Force, the Volunteer Battalions were renumbered:

  • 1st Volunteer Battalion (Halifax) became the 4th Battalion (Halifax)
  • 2nd Volunteer Battalion (Huddersfield) was split to become the 5th Battalion (Huddersfield) and 7th Battalion (Colne Valley)
  • 3rd Volunteer Battalion (Skipton) became the 6th Battalion (Skipton)

During the First World War, the 1st Regular Battalion remained stationed as a garrison force in India whilst the 2nd Regular Battalion was deployed on the Western Front. The 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th Territorial Battalions all raised multiple lines from new recruits, and several new battalions (9th to 14th) were raised as part of Kitchener's "New Army".

During the inter-war period, the growing need for anti-aircraft defence saw the 5th Battalion become the searchlight 43rd (5th Duke of Wellington's) Anti-Aircraft Battalion, Royal Engineers in 1936. Two years later, the 4th Battalion became the 58th (Duke of Wellingtons Regiment) Anti-Tank Regiment, Royal Artillery.

Selected Personnel

Further Reading


The history of the battalions within the regiment (post 1883 Childers Reforms) is summarised below:

  • 1st Regular Battalion
    • 1st Battalion
      • stationed in India from 1905 and remained there during First World War
  • 2nd Regular Battalion
    • 2nd Battalion
      • deployed on the Western Front during First World War
  • 3rd Militia Battalion & 4th Militia Battalion
  • 1st Volunteer Battalion (1883 to 1908) — Halifax
    • 4th Battalion (1908 to 1938) — Halifax
      • 1/4th & 2/4th units were formed during the First World War
      • 58th Anti-Tank Regiment (1938 to 1947)
  • 2nd Volunteer Battalion (1883 to 1908) — Huddersfield
    • 5th Battalion (1908 to 1936) — Huddersfield
      • 1/5th, 2/5th & 3/5th units were formed during the First World War
      • 43rd Anti-Aircraft Battalion (1936 to 1940)
      • 43rd Searchlight Regiment (1940 to 1944)
    • 7th Battalion (1908 to 1957) — Milnsbridge
      • 1/7th, 2/7th & 3/7th units were formed during the First World War
  • 3rd Volunteer Battalion (1883 to 1908) — Skipton
    • 6th Battalion (1908 to 1947) — Skipton
      • 1/6th & 2/6th units were formed during the First World War
      • 322nd Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment (1947-1949)

During the First World War, several volunteer service and labour battalions were formed from new recruits as part of Kitchener's New Army:



The following map shows locations linked to individuals who served in this regiment during the First World War and who are commemorated in the Huddersfield & District Roll of Honour.

Notes and References