The Royal New South Wales Lancers

The Regiment

125th Anniversary Parade Video (Low Resolution 250 kb/s streaming .wmv file)

 The Royal New South Wales Lancers  

The Regiment dates from the inauguration of the Sydney Light Horse and other cavalry troops in New South Wales in 1885. In those pre federation days, the raising of such units sprang from a public-spirited wish to give voluntary service, and was not sponsored or directed by the government of the day.

In 1899, a squadron of the Regiment, which had been training in England, became the first colonial troops to arrive in South Africa for active service against the Boers in the South African War. This squadron was reinforced by further drafts from New South Wales, it formed part of General French’s Cavalry Division.

In the 1914-1918 war, the Regiment being militia, did not serve abroad, however, most of its pre-war members joined the AIF. Subsequently the Lancers were designated as successors to the 1st Light Horse Regiment of the AIF. It had fought at Gallipoli and later in Siani and Palestine as part of the Desert Mounted Corps. In 1956, the number “15th” was linked with the “1st” making the Regiment also the successor to the 15th Light Horse Regiment, AIF which had been formed in Palestine in 1918 from personnel of the Camel Corps.

The Regiment was granted the title “Royal” in 1935. It was horsed until 1936, when it was motorised as a mechanised machine gun regiment. In 1942, it was incorporated into the AIF as an armoured regiment. Equipped with Matilda Infantry Support Tanks, it pioneered the use of tanks in the New Guinea jungle. Later in the seaborne assault by the 7th Division on Balikpapan in Borneo, the Regiment made the heaviest Australian tank attack of the war. It was the only armoured regiment of militia origin to go overseas, and the only Australian Armoured Regiment to be sent overseas twice.

After the war, the regiment was equipped first with Matilda then Centurion tanks until 1971, when it was converted to a Reconnaissance Regiment, and equipped with the M113 family of tracked light armoured fighting vehicles. The Regiment with 21 battle honours, is the most highly decorated unit in the Australian Army. It celebrated its centenary in 1985, and looks forward to serving the nation in the 21st Century.

The 120th anniversary parade in 2005 was fully mounted and somewhat magnificent to view; Click Here to view a slide show of the parade, Click Here to download video of the Advance in Review Order (573 kb wmv file).

In 2010, the Regiment sent a detachment to serve as peacekeepers in the Solomon Islands.  This was the first operational deployment since World Watr II.  Click Here to view a low resolution version of the flawless welcome home and 125th anniversary parade. Then once your appetite has been whetted Click Here to go to the Museum Shop and purchase a full definition DVD of the event (only $10 in Australia - $(AU)15 overseas).

© New South Wales Lancers Memorial Museum Incorporated ABN 94 630 140 881; Linden House, Lancer Barracks, 2 Smith Street, PARRAMATTA, AUSTRALIA
Postal Address: PO Box 7287, PENRITH SOUTH NSW 2750, AUSTRALIA; Telephone: +61 (0)405 482 814 Email:
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