The Regimental Association of the Devonshire and Dorset Regiment

Welcome to our website

Welcome to Our Regimental Association

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 categories 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. 

A NATIONAL MEMORIAL TO THE COUNTY REGIMENTS OF DEVON AND DORSET 

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.

Association Programme - 01 November to 30 November 2017​​

11 - Armistice Day

12 - Remembrance Day – Exeter Catherdral

12 - Exeter Branch Remembrance Day Parade

12 - Gillingham Branch Remembrance Day Service, Muster RBL, Gillingham 10:15hrs

15 - Exmouth F/P meeting, RAFA (Wings Club) Imperial Rd, Exmouth from, 1 pm.

15 - Bridport Branch meeting, at The Haddon House Hotel, West Bay, Bridport at 11:30am

16 - Southampton & District Branch meeting, Locksheath Working Men’s Club, Duncan Road, Park Gate at 12.00 pm.

17 - Books of Remembrance Page Turning Service, Sherborne Abbey, at 11am. Refreshments afterwards. All welcome.

22 - Gillingham Branch meeting, RBL Club, Gillingham, at 7:30pm.

25 - Salisbury F/P meeting and annual Quiz night, RBL Andover at 7:30pm

27 - Honiton F/P Christmas Lunch

29 - Purbeck Branch Meeting, Clay Pipe Inn, Orangeford Rd, Holton Heath, Nr Poole at 8pm

Association Programme - 01 December to 31 December 2017​​​ 

01 Plymouth (Late Devons) Branch meeting, Crownhill Families Club, Fort Road, Crownhill at 1030- 12 noon.

01 Plymouth D and D Branch meeting, RBL Crownhill, Tailyour Road, Crownhill at 7.30pm

01 Plymouth Focal Point meeting – Rowing Club, North Rd, Plymouth 8pm.

01 Exeter Branch meeting and Christmas Draw, Whipton Institute Club at 7.30pm

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.

New Information

17 September 2017: Memorial dedication service at the National Memorial Aboretum 

22 - 23 September 2017: Annual JBO, Exeter for more information click here.

13 October 2017: Members of the Kenya Vets / 4th Devons / 1st RV / D and D’s combined lunch, Wyvern Bks. More information here.

19 May 2018: Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association annual reunion.

19 May 2018: Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association annual reunion after party at the Exeter White Ensign Club

30 June 2018: 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​​​

Ancre, France WW1
13 November 1916

This battle marked the final phase of the 1916 Somme offensive. Its objective was the elimination of a German salient between the Albert-Bapaume road and Serre, with Beaumont-Hamel at its head. Two British corps took part.

The assault was launched , amidst a tremendous artillery bombardment, in darkness and thick fog at 5.45am on 13 November. The attackers had to contend with deep mud, heavy enemy fire and poor visibility. Beaumont-Hamel was secured, but an attempt to capture Serre failed. The 32nd Division, containing 1st Dorsets, was brought into the offensive on 18 November. They endured a pounding in support as other battalions attempted to take features known as Frank Fort Trench and Ten Tree Alley. The attacks failed, and amongst the casualties, 3 companies of the Manchesters disappeared entirely. The Dorsets were sent up to reinforce the assault, but it was in vain and by midday, the survivors were back at the start line.


El Mughar, Palestine WW1
13 November 1917

This battle took place on during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of WW1. Fighting between the advancing British Empire Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) and the retreating Ottoman Turkish Army occurred over an extensive area north of the Gaza to Beersheba line, and west of the road from Beersheba to Jerusalem via Hebron.

On 8 November, the British succeeded in capturing Sheria, and Ottoman units along the whole line were in retreat. The EEF attacked again on an extended front from the Judean foothills across the Mediterranean coastal plain from 10 to 14 November.

2/4th Dorsets in the 75th Division were operating near Gaza. On 13 November the division attacked the Turks on the right of the British force. They came under fire at a village called El Mesmiyeh, but captured it, enduring excessive heat and a ration of only half a gallon of water per man per day. They advanced again by night and thereafter took possession of Junction Station.


Nebi Samwil, Palestine WW1
17 November 1917

This battle was fought during the World War 1 Sinai and Palestine Campaign, in which the British Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) advanced against the Turkish Ottoman defenders.

Following on from its victory at the Battle of Mughar Ridge, the battle of Nebi Samwil was the first attempt by the EEF to capture Jerusalem. The village, also known as the Tomb of Samuel, was part of the Ottoman defences in front of Jerusalem and its capture was considered vital to the eventual capture of the city. The British attacking force consisted of three divisions, two infantry and one mounted.

One of the assaulting divisons was the 75th, which contained 1st/5th Devons and 2nd/4th Dorsets. The Dorsets were involved in clearing and picketing the high ground during the advance to the village. The Devons operated to the west at Station Junction. The weather had turned from overbearing heat to driving rain during this operation, which greatly hampered rapid movement.

The village was captured on 21 November 1917, however the EEF still had to defend it against Ottoman counter-attacks. In addition, unsupported by artillery, the British infantry could not break through the main Ottoman defensive line and this attack failed to reach its objective of Jerusalem.


Geilenkirchen, Germany, WW2
18 November 1944

Geilenkirchen is situated on the Wurm river, north of Aachen. Operation Clipper was a British XXX Corps offensive against the Geilenkirchen salient, a German position on the Siegfried Line and a formidable objective of minefields and concrete bunkers. It was the first time that British troops had fought on German soil since Minden in 1759. 

In the four phase assault, the U.S. 84th Division passed through the frontline to take the high ground east of the town. Then the 43rd (Wessex) Division, containing 5th Dorsets, advanced to capture the high ground to the north and west. The Dorset’s particular objective was the hamlet of Bauchem, which was subdued by a ferocious artillery bombardment and occupied with no effective resistance. The US division then occupied the town.

An attempt by the Allies to consolidate further Northeast failed, due to muddy ground and a strong German defence, but the aim of creating room for manoeuvre for the U.S. XIII Corps had been achieved.


Regimental Memorial Dedication

Regimental Association Newsletter

Online Newsletter

Online Newsletter

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,
Exeter,
Devon,
EX2 6AR

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