The Regimental Association of the Devonshire and Dorset Regiment

Welcome to our website

Welcome to Our Regimental Association

Message from the Association Chairman.

I know you will all be as shocked and upset as I was to read Jason Shopland’s Face Book posts about the bullying he suffered. As our President has already said, bullying in any form is completely unacceptable, is contrary to our values and is to be condemned.

Whilst peer support is invaluable, victims may wish to seek professional advice.  SSAFA Forcesline may be able to assist.  They can be contacted on 0800 7314880 or send them a message using their Forcesline contact form (details at:  All cases are dealt with confidentially by specialist staff.  Do not be shy in contacting them, even if it just to tell someone about it.  They are there to help.

Our annual Reunion is an opportunity for us to come together as comrades and to support each other as friends.  It is important that these genuine bonds of mutual support are maintained.  I very much hope to see you in Exeter on Saturday 16th May 2020.

Bill Sharpe

Welcome to our website.  Our Association exists to preserve the memory of The Devonshire and Dorset Regiment and its forebears, The Devonshire Regiment and The Dorset Regiment, and to maintain the close comradeship that our members found during their service in these renowned British Army infantry regiments.  We also give our staunchest support to the new Regiment into which our Regiment was merged in 2007 - The Rifles, in which the Infantrymen of Devon and Dorset now serve.

Please browse our site to learn more about our history, objectives, organisation and activities. Our About Us and Events pages will tell you who we are, how we are organised and alert you to our future gatherings and events.

Association Membership and the Members Area

Membership of our Association is open to anyone who has served with The Devonshire and Dorset Regiment, its antecedent Regiments and members of our successor Regiment - The Rifles.  See our Association Rules for the full details. If you fall into any of the categorie listed there you can be an Association member.  You should supply us with your details so we can add you to our Registered Members List.  Visit our Members Area page to find out how.  It only takes a minute to register and you only have to apply once.

Once you have registered, we will supply you with a password so you can log into the Members Area pages on this website.  There you will get additional Association information that is only for our members, such as detailed news, more information about our activities, contact details for our Branches and Focal Points and the e-version of The Janner, our monthly newsletter. 

Association Programme - Suspended due to Covid-19


Check our Calendar page for the details and our Local Organisation page for contact information. Why don't you join our members at our local gatherings? They would be delighted to see you.

Battle of Bois des Buttes 27 May 1918 Centenary Commenerations

In early May 1918, the depleted British 8th Division, including 2nd Devons, moved to a previously tranquil area of the Western Front north west of Reims to rebuild. On 26 May, their peace was shattered by a major German assault in the Aisne area - ‘Operation Blucher’.

The 2nd Devons gallant stand against this German advance at Bois de Buttes is legendary. After the battle, the French awarded the whole battalion with the Croix de Guerre. The ribbon, shown above, was worn thereafter on the uniforms of Devons, Devon and Dorsets, and now our successors in The Rifles. 

The Devonshire and Dorset Regimental association organised a centenary commeration that took place at the memorial for the battle of Bois Des Buttes in La Ville-aux-Bois-Les-Pontavert in France. Click on the Croix de Guerre ribbon for more.


On 17 September 2017, we unveiled our wonderful National Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum in a Dedication Ceremony attended by members of our Regimental Association and their guests. 

This happy conclusion was made possible by the artistic excellence of our sculptor, Vivien Mallock, and by the hard work of a large team of Association members who planned and managed the project. It is the outcome of the overwhelmingly generous support to our Memorial Appeal by a host of individuals and organisations across Devon, Dorset and beyond.

Read all about the Dedication Ceremony here.

Visit our National Memorial Page to read all about it.

Visit our Memorial Story page to read the story of our Memorial from inception to Dedication

Photograph by Simon Young.

New Information

16 May 2020: Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association annual reunion.

16 May 2020: Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association annual reunion after party venue tbc.

27 June 2020: National Armed Forces Day. Events are happening up and down the country to find what's happening in your area take a look at the Armed Forces Day website. With so many events taking place there is sure to be something close by.

The Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association facebook page.  We now have a facebook page click here to view.

The Keep Military Museum: The Keep Military museum has had it's website refreshed and it is now looking better than ever. It has a number of new features including a redesigned online shop. Take a look now by using this link The Keep Military Museum.

Members' Notice Board

You'll find a great deal of useful information on the Notice Board page in our Members Area, including:

Defence Privilage Card. A discount card for members of the Armed Forces, families and veterans, has been introduced. Members who have served can join. 

Employment.  When we are informed of employment possibilities, we place them here.

Supporting our Association.  Our Association is a charity and needs your suppport.  See how you can contribute.

Preparing for the Death of a Loved One.  Nobody likes to think of their eventual passing, but preparations made whilst you are fit and healthy can make managing afterwards much easier for your loved ones. 

Regimental Battle Honours​​​

Orthes, France, Penninsula War 
27 February 1814

Near the end of the Peninsula war, the French Marshall Soult was trying to confine the British and Portugese invaders in the extreme southwest corner of France. Having failed to hold Bayonne, he withdrew to Orthes. Wellington attacked the French here and, being outmanoeuvred, Soult withdrew further east, losing some 2,600 casualties.

The 1/39th of Foot (Dorsets) was involved in this battle as part of the 2nd Division. The battalion crossed the River Gave de Pau above Orthes in the early hours of 27 February, to turn the French left and help force the French retreat.

The 1/11th of Foot (Devons) was also there as part of the 6th Division. It also crossed the river but spent the battle in reserve, chasing the retreating French from position to position on empty stomachs, but suffering no casualties.

Relief of Ladysmith, 2nd Boer War 
27 February 1900

In October 1899, a Boer force invaded British-held Natal Province in South Africa and succeeded in surrounding a number of towns, including Ladysmith. 1st Devons was part of the besieged force. Britain transported thousands of troops to South Africa from the United Kingdom and the Empire and set about mounting a relief. 

Mobilised from England, 2nd Devons, within the 1st Division, and 2nd Dorsets, in the 5th Division, were amongst this relieving force, which advanced from Durban northwards into Natal and confronted the Boers in a number of difficult, rocky strongholds. After a number of setbacks, the British succeeded in reaching the ground overlooking Ladysmith, from whence the Boers withdrew on 28 February. The two Devon battalions met up on 01 March.

Egypt, Napoleonic Wars 
08 March 1800​

On this day both the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 54th of Foot (Dorsets) were part of a British expeditionary force that landed at Aboukir Bay, close to Alexandria, in Egypt. The British then conducted a five-month campaign against Napoleon’s Armée de l’Orient. This was a tough operation. In addition to battle casualties, the battalions suffered badly from a variety of diseases. Nevertheless, the British prevailed.

Regimental Association Newsletter

Online Newsletter 2017

Online Newsletter 2016

Regimental Memorial Dedication

Key Links

Donate By Text

You can now text donations to The Devon and Dorset Regimental Association Charity

Text DDRA11 £? to 70070
Where ? can be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 10

For more information on how to donate to the Association charity click here

They couldn’t have done better by Christopher Jary

The Story of the Dorset Regiment in War and Peace 1939-67 - compiled by Christopher Jary.

Click the picture to read more detail and order the book.

For a review of this book by John Gaye click here

The Royal British Legion ... and one small branch in Devon

Stories of service by Devon legionnaires - compiled by Paddy King-Fretts. Profits go to the RBL.

Click the picture to read more detail and order the book.

For a review of this book by Colin Pape click here

A Royal Christmas by Jeremy Archer

Profits go to ABF - The Soldiers Charity.

Click the picture for a link to the ABF shop page where you can order a copy.

A celebration of the Royal Family at Christmas

The Ulster Tales by General Sir John Wilsey

Profits go to The Rifles Care For Casualties (C4C) appeal.

Click the picture for details.

For a review of this book by John Gaye click here

The Old West Country Regiments by Jeremy Archer

Profits go to The Keep Museum.

Click the picture for details.

Get In Touch

The Regimental Association of The Devonshire and Dorset Regiment
The Rifle's Exeter Office,
Block 11,
Wyvern Barracks,

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