William Frederick McFadzean
No. 14/18278 Pte. William Frederick McFadzean, late R. Ir. Rif.
For most conspicuous bravery. While in a concentration trench and opening a box of bombs for distribution prior to an attack, the box slipped down into the trench, which was crowded with men, and two of the safety pins fell out. Private McFadzean, instantly realising the danger to his comrades, with heroic courage threw himself on the top of the Bombs. The bombs exploded blowing him to pieces, but only one other man was injured. He well knew his danger, being himself a bomber, but without a moment's hesitation he gave his life for his comrades. 14th Battalion, Battle of the Somme, 1st July 1916  LG 9/9/1916
Robert Quigg
No. 12/18645 Pte. Robert Quigg, R. Ir. Rif.
For most conspicuous bravery. He advanced to the assault with his platoon three times. Early next morning, hearing a rumour that his platoon officer was lying out wounded, he went out seven times to look for him under heavy shell and machine gun fire, each time bringing back a wounded man. The last man he dragged in on a waterproof sheet from within a few yards of the enemy's wire. He was seven hours engaged in this most gallant work, and finally was so exhausted that he had to give it up.  12th Battalion, Battle of the Somme, 1st July 1916  LG 9/9/1916
Edmund de Wind
The late 2nd Lieut. Edmund de Wind, 15th Bn., R. Ir. Rif.
For most conspicuous bravery and self-sacrifice on the 21st March, 1918, at the Race Course Redoubt, near Grougie. For seven hours he held this most important post, and though twice wounded and practically single-handed, he maintained his position until another section could be got to his help. On two occasions, with two N.C.O.s only, he got out on top under heavy machine-gun and rifle fire, and cleared the enemy out of the trench, killing many. He continued to repel attack after attack until he was mortally wounded and collapsed. His valour, self-sacrifice and example were of the highest order. LG 13/5/1919
Private James Pearson
On 3 April 1858 at Jhansi, India, Private Pearson was wounded in an attack on a number of Indian rebels; he killed one of them, and bayoneting two others. He also took another wounded private to Calpee under heavy fire, but the private died soon after of his wounds.
Private James Byrne
On 3 April 1858 at Jhansi, India, Private Byrne assisted a captain of his regiment (Henry Edward Jerome) in removing, under very heavy fire, a lieutenant who was severely wounded. They took the injured man to a place of safety, in the performance of which act the private was wounded.
Byrne's Victoria Cross was sold in London, June 1893 for 35
Captain Henry Edward Jerome

86th Royal County Down Regiment
ON April 3, 1858, at Jhansi, Captain Henry Edward Jerome, assisted by Private James Byrne (V.C.), of his regiment, brought out of action under a very heavy fire, Lieutenant Sewell who had fallen severely wounded at a very exposed part of the attack. Again on May 28, at the capture of the Fort of Chandairee at the storming of Jhansi, and in action with a powerful force, his bravery was most conspicuous. In the last action he had part of his head torn away, his recovery being considered marvellous.
Major-General Jerome afterwards served through the Hazara Campaign, retiring in 1885. He was born on February 2, 1830, and died at Bath, February 25, 1901.
Lieutenant Hugh Stewart Cochrane

86th Royal County Down Regiment
At Jhansi on April 1, 1858, a company (No. 1) of the 86th Regiment was ordered to charge and capture a gun. Being mounted, Lieutenant Cochrane dashed forward - greatly in advance of his men - exposed to the musketry fire of the rebel infantry in rear of the battery as well as that from the gun itself. Charging headlong on the gunners, who gave way almost to a man, he kept possession of the piece till support came up, afterwards charging the enemy's rear-guard, who shot three horses from under him, his attack upon them being so close and resolute.
MGS Egypt clasp, 86th Foot.
Captain George Middlemore
Private  John Burden
Corporal John Eyre
Corporal John Hopewell
Private William Jones
Private Edward Moses
Private John Scott
Private Anthony Walsh
1921: "Irish" to "Ulster"
Title changed from "Royal Irish Rifles" to "Royal Ulster Rifles" during the disbandments and reorganisations coincident with the creation of the Irish Free State.

Medals of the Regiments:
The Royal Irish Rifles


Images Copyright

Royal Irish Rifles / Ulster Rifles Cap Bage.

awaiting more insignia pics
The  badge of the regiment, white metal version, post 1913.  
Kipling and King 691 





The Royal Irish Rifles N

1793 - 1969
pre 1881 post 1881
83rd (County of Dublin) Regiment of Foot 1st Battalion, The Royal Irish Rifles
86th (Royal County Down) Regiment of Foot 1st Battalion, The Royal Irish Rifles
Earliest recognised formation: 83rd: 1793, when raised as William Fitch's Regiment of Foot
86th:  1793 when raised as Sir Cornelius Cuyler's Shropshire Volunteers. Between 1806 and 1812 the regiment was known as the 86th (The Leinster) Regiment of Foot
Motto: Quis Separabit = Who shall separate us?
Regimental Journal:  Quis Separabit
WWI: Battle Honours; 40 Victoria Crosses; 3 Died; 7010
WWII:    Battle Honours; 10 Victoria Crosses; 0 Died; ????
Amalgamated: 1968, With the Royal Irish Fusiliers and the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers to form The Royal Irish Rangers (27th (Inniskilling) 83rd and 87th)
A second battalion of the 83rd was operational 1804-17

Egypt Campaign 1801 (86th) and the Peninsula War 1808 - 1814  (83rd)

Military General Service Medal 1793 - 1814

  86th Regiment


number 8 N
  83rd Regiment (two battalions)



Fuentes d' Onor


Ciudad Rodrigo



number: 11772 791 8999 81







total medals/max clasps
number: 11060 6218 9498 /

Battle Honours: Talavera, Busaco, Fuentes d'Onor, Ciudad Rodrigo, Badajos, Salamanca, Vittoria,  Nivelle, Orthes, Toulouse, Peninsula;  and a Sphinx superscribed Egypt was permitted to be borne on the colours


The Indian Mutiny 1857   Both regiments present

India Mutiny Medal. 1857 -59

clasp: ....none...
Central India
number: 83rd Regiment
101 925
86th Regiment
23 879

VCs 4;   Cochrane JeromeByrnePearson.  (all 86th)


Battle Honours: Central India

The 83rd served in the First Anglo-Boer War 1880-1881, no campaign medals issued.
1881: 83rd and 86th Regiments of Foot now becomes the 1st and 2nd Battalions, The Royal Irish Rifles

Egypt & Sudan 1888-89: Action against Osman Digna, and Wad en Nejumi's invasion force.  2nd Battalion and a detachment of the 1st Battalion served.

Egypt and Sudan Medal 1882-89


Gemaizah 1888

Toski 1889

number: 33 29


Recipients also entitled to a Khedive's Star  undated.



South African War 1899 - 1902 or "Boer War"   2nd Battalion (November 1899-end of the war) with companies deployed as Mounted Infantry.

Queen's South Africa Medal 1899-1902, with or without the King's South Africa Medal 1901 - 1902

Common clasps: Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, South Africa 1901, South Africa 1902.


The Battalion of foot infantry had large numbers of men captured at Stormberg and Reddersburg, and was generally deployed on garrison duty after these defeats, hence few other clasps.*



Officers NCOs and Men
KIA & DOW/ DOD Wounded Missing / POW KIA & DOW Death from disease Wounded Missing / POW
 2nd Battalion (November 1899-end of the war)
3/- 11 12 - - 106 673*

Battle Honour: South Africa 1900-1902


The Great War 1914 - 1918  ( 21 battalions; 14 served overseas:- )

Generally awarded the British War Medal & Victory Medal, men overseas prior to 1/1/1916 also a 1914 or 1914-15 Star.

Battalion → 1*  2 6 7 8
East Belfast
West Belfast
South Belfast
South Antrim
1st Co. Down
Central Antrim
Young Citizens
North Belfast
2nd Co. Down
  8/9**    11/13***
date of first overseas service.
 (first theatre red x )
France & Flanders x x   x x x x x x x x x x  
Gallipoli     x                      
Egypt & Palestine     x                      
Macedonia     x                      
India                           x
possible ?
1914 or 1914-15 x x                        
or 1914-15 only     x x x x x x x x x x x  
VCs at a glance:                      
Extracted from : "Soldiers / Officers Died in the Great War" (consider approximate - in addition the regiment as a whole lost an additional  166 officers who are recorded with 'battalion not shown'  or with battalions not shown here, or who we have  not yet allocated a battalion.)
1202 1401 194 341 312 262 344 299 459 679 419 488 166 28
44 63

* The 1st Battalion was in Aden at the start, returned first to the UK.

** 8th and 9th Battalions amalgamated 29/8/1917 to form the 8th/9th Battalion.

*** 11th and 13th Battalions amalgamated  13/11/1917 to form the 11th/13th Battalion.

Regular Territorial Force New Armies Garrison.

Territorial Force War Medal 1914-19
2 officers and 7 men of the Royal Irish Rifles also qualified for this medal.


VCs 3;  McFadzean Quigg De Wind  


Battle Honours: Mons; Marne 1914; Ypres 1914, 1915, 1917, 1918; Neuve Chapelle; Somme 1916, 1918; Albert 1916; Courtrai; Struma; Suvla; Jerusalem.  Le Cateau; Retreat from Mons; Aisne 1914; La Bass& 1914; Messines 1914, 1917, 1918; Armentieres 1914; Nonne Bosschen; Frezenberg; Aubers; Bazentin; Pozieres; Guillemont; Ginchy; Ancre Heights; Pilckem; Langemarck 1917; Cambrai 1917; St Quentin; Rosieres; Lys; Bailleul; Kernmel; France and Flanders 1914-18; Kosturino; Macedonia 1915-17; Sari Bair; Gallipoli 1915; Gaza; Tell'Asur; Palestine 1917-18.


Mesopotamia & Persia 1919 - 20 2nd Battalion

General Service Medal 1918 -62



numbers: ?
1st January, 1921: The Royal Irish Rifles are re-titled "The Royal Ulster Rifles".

Operations on the North West Frontier 1936-39 1st Battalion

India General Service Medal 1936-39


North West Frontier 1937-39

number: ?

Jewish / Arab unrest, Palestine 1936 - 39 2nd Battalion

General Service Medal 1918 -62



numbers: ?

WW2 1939 - 1945  

Battalion → 1st 2nd
campaign ↓    
France and  Belgium 1940.
(Dunkirk )
North Africa & Middle East    
Sicily / Italy    
N.W. Europe x x


  In India at the start, sent to the UK.
1st Air Landing Brigade 10/12/41 - 15/5/43 (UK).
1 RUR then  transferred to 6th Air Landing Brigade (Glider borne D-Day Landers). Withdrawn to England 24/2/45 for another planned assault, but rushed back to NW Europe a few weeks later for service in the Ardennes.
9th Infantry Brigade
D-Day Landers

WW2 Stars common to the Battalion. (excluding 39-45 star )
 Key: A = Africa, P = Pacific, B =  Burma, I = Italy,  F&G = France and Germany

  F&G F&G

Most also entitled to the 1939-45 War Medal and many the Defence Medal


Battle Honours:  Dyle; Dunkirk 1940; Normandy Landing; Caen; Rhine; Bremen. Cambes; Troarn; Venlo Pocket; North-West Europe 1940, 1944-5.


Jewish / Arab Unrest,  Palestine 1945 - 48 1st  Battalion (1945)

General Service Medal 1918 -62

Palestine 1945-48
1948: Regulars reduced to a single battalion  (the 1st)

Korean War 1950 - 1953   1st Battalion (Nov 1950 - Oct 1951)

Queen's Korea Medal

number: ?*

* 38 officers and 945 ORs; with reinforcements of 9 officers and 176 ORs are strengths quoted in the official history for 8/8/1950.



Casualties: KIA or DOW Wounded POW  
103 ? 207
Honours and Awards: DSO MC bar to MC DCM MM BEM OBE MBE USA
Bronze Star Silver Star
2 4 1 1 4 1 1 2 1 1

Battle Honours:  Imjin; Korea 1950-51; Seoul.


The Cyprus Emergency 1955 - 1960  1st Battalion (May 1957 - Nov 1959)

General Service Medal 1918-62




CO; Lt. Col.  T.N.S. Wheeler


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Selected Links

The Regimental Museum. (Located in )


Selected Bibliography;

Author Title Publisher
Edited by Brevet-Major E. W. Bray. Memoirs and Services of the Eighty-Third Regiment (County of Dublin), from 1795 to 1863; including the Campaigns of the Regiment in the West Indies, Africa, the Peninsula, Ceylon, Canada, and India.. 71pp London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1863
Cannon's Historical Records Series Historical Record of the Eighty-Sixth, or The Royal County Down Regiment of Foot; containing an Account of the Formation of the Regiment in 1793, and of its subsequent Services to 1842. 72 pp. London: John W. Parker, 1842
Lt.-Col. H. A. Eagar, Commanding. Royal Irish Rifles, 2nd Battalion, being The Record of the Service of the Battalion; together with a Series of Reproductions of Photographs taken by F. B. Stewart at Poona, India, February, 1897.  "Made by The Historical Publishing Co., Philadelphia, U.S.A.", published by C. B. Burrows, care Wm. Watson & Co., Bombay and London. 1897
Lieut.-Col. George Brenton Laurie. History of the Royal Irish Rifles.  540 pp. London: Gale & Pollen Ltd., 1914
 Cyril Falls, formerly Captain. ---- Vol. 2. The History of the First Seven Battalions The Royal Irish Rifles (now The Royal Ulster Rifles) in the Great War.   189 pp. Aldershot: printed for the Regimental Committeee by Gale & Polden Ltd. 1925.
 Charles Graves. ----Vol. 3. The Royal Ulster Rifles. Covering the period 1919-1948 and including a short account of the Battalions which served with the 36th Ulster Division 1914-1918. . 345 pp. Published by the Royal Ulster Rifles Regimental Committee. [Mexborough: printed by The Times Printing Co. Ltd., 1950]
 John Body The Story of the Eighty-Third and Eighty-Sixth Regiments of Foot, The Royal Ulster Rifles. 41 pp.  Belfast: British Broadcasting Corporation, Northern Ireland, 1953
  The Royal Ulster Rifles in Korea. 104 pp.
Belfast: Wm. Mullan & Son (Publishers) Ltd., 1953
"including Photographs and Maps by A.P.I. Samuels and D.G.S. " With the Ulster Division in France. A Story of the 11th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (South Antrim Volunteers), from Bordon to Thiepval.   97 pp. Belfast: Wm. Mullan & Son [1918]


Additional Bibliography for this Page.

Author/Compiler Title Publisher
Officers of the Regiment. Unpublished rolls in the care of the National Archives; WO 100/ etc. -
Stiles, Richard G.M.L. Mayhem in the Med: A Chronicle of the Cyprus Emergency Savannah 2005 ( London)
  Additional bibliography same as Northumberland Fusiliers page  



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