Military Subjects: Organization, Strategy & Tactics

British Regiments and the Men Who Led Them 1793-1815: 25th Regiment of Foot

By Steve Brown

Secondary Titles:

Sussex (to 1805): thereafter King’s Own Borderers

Regimental History

1689:

18 March – raised by Earl of Leven as the Edinburgh Regiment

1795:

5 April – 2nd and 3rd Battalions formed

1796:

2nd and 3rd Battalions disbanded

1804:

1 August - 2nd Battalion reformed at Penrith with men from Cumberland and Westmoreland

1816:

24 February – 2nd Battalion disbanded at Cork.

Colonels

1762:

29 December

Lord George Henry Lennox

1805:

25 March

Hon. Charles Fitzroy

Stations and Combats – 1st Battalion

1793:

Plymouth; served with fleet in West Indies; siege of Toulon; Hyeres Bay; Mont Faron; Aresnes; Corsica – Martella Tower; St Fiorenzi; Calvi; Bastia

1794:

Genoa - Cape Novi (as marines); detachment with fleet on Glorious First of June; December – 2 companies to Barbados , then Grenada

1795:

England ; remainder of battalion to West Indies – Barbados ; Grenada

1796:

Grenada – Pilot Hill; July – to England (having lost 21 men in action and 547 to disease); Plymouth; absorbed 2nd and 3rd Battalion men

1797:

Detachment with fleet in Mediterranean; stopped naval mutiny; Plymouth

1798:

Plymouth; Jersey

1799:

Jersey; June – Isle of Wight; Shirley Common; Barham Downs; August – to Holland; Zuyper-Sluis; Bergen; EGMONT-OP-ZEE; Castricum; Alkmaar; October – England; Yarmouth; Ipswich

1800:

Ipswich; Riding Street; Colchester; June – Windsor; October – Lewes

1801:

Lewes; May – Portsmouth; July – Malta; September – Egypt; siege of Alexandria; November – Malta; December – Gibraltar

1802:

Gibraltar; involved in mutiny

1803:

Gibraltar; June – to England ; Portsmouth; to Ireland – Clonmel

1804:

Ireland – Cork; June – Limerick; September – Fermoy

1805:

Ireland – Charleville; Doneraile; became King’s Own Borderers

1806:

Ireland – Charleville; Doneraile

1807:

Ireland ; June – Kinsale; December – Madeira; to West Indies

1808:

February – Barbados ; St Kitts; flank companies to Martinique

1809:

4 companies in MARTINIQUE; battalion re-united in Barbados

1810:

January – Guadeloupe; St Martin; St Eustacius; St Kitts

1811:

Leeward Islands

1812:

Leeward Islands

1813:

Leeward Islands; March – Guadeloupe

1814:

Guadeloupe; December – 2 companies to Antigua, rest to Barbados

1815:

Barbados ; May – re-capture of Martinique; August – re-capture of Guadeloupe

1816:

Barbados ; St Vincent; home in June 1817 after 16 years away.

Stations and Combats – 2nd Battalion

1795:

Formed; to Grenada .

1796:

Disbanded; fit men into 1st Battalion

1804:

Re-formed at Penrith

1805:

Berwick-Upon-Tweed; became King’s Own Borderers

1806:

Berwick-Upon-Tweed

1807:

Berwick-Upon-Tweed

1808:

Berwick-Upon-Tweed

1809:

Berwick-Upon-Tweed

1810:

Berwick-Upon-Tweed

1811:

Scotland

1812:

Scotland

1813:

Scotland ; to continent – Stralsund; Rostock; Netherlands

1814:

Belgium

1815:

Belgium ; Antwerp Garrison

1816:

To Ireland ; disbanded at Cork.

Stations and Combats – 3rd Battalion

1795:

Formed; to Grenada .

1796:

Disbanded; fit men into 1st Battalion.

Careers of Senior Officers (shown as highest rank attained in regiment in the period)

Lt. Col. Alexander Rigby

Major in 25th Foot 1 April 1771; Lieutenant-Colonel 7 July 1774; brevet Colonel 25 November 1780; died April 1793.

Major John Sayer

Major in 89th Foot 26 April 1783; Major in 25th Foot 18 December 1792 (from half-pay of 89th Foot); exchanged to 2nd Foot 26 April 1793.

Lt. Col. Hon. John Hope

Born West Lothian, Scotland 1765; Major in 2nd Foot 25 April 1792; Lieutenant-Colonel in 25th Foot 26 April 1793 (on exchange from 2nd Foot); Adjutant-General in Leeward Islands 1794; brevet Colonel 3 May 1796; Brigadier-General in West Indies 1796; served at Helder 1799; Brigadier-General in Mediterranean 1800; Colonel of 2/60th Foot 3 October 1805; subsequently Major-General 1802; Lieutenant-General 25 April 1808; General 12 August 1819; died 1823.

Lt. Col. William St. Clair

Major in 25th Foot 26 April 1793; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 9 September 1794; Lieutenant-Colonel 10 March 1795; commanded 2/25th Foot 1795 to 1796; nothing further known, presumably retired on reduction of 2nd Battalion.

Major Charles McMurdo

Major in 25th Foot 10 March 1795 (on transfer from 3rd Foot); Deputy Quartermaster-General in Cape of Good Hope 1795; resigned June 1798 (?).

Major M. Scott

Major in 19th Foot 9 September 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 25th Foot 7 November 1795; exchanged to 28th Foot 11 November 1795.

Lt. Col. William Dyott

Born Staffordshire 1761; Major in 4th Foot 19 May 1794; Lieutenant-Colonel in 4th Foot 18 September 1794; Brigade Major-General in Britain June 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 103rd Foot 18 August 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 28th Foot 5 September 1795; Lieutenant-Colonel in 25th Foot 11 November 1795 (exchanged from 28th Foot); served in West Indies 1796; brevet Colonel 1 January 1800; served in Egypt 1801; ADC to King 1802; subsequently Major-General 25 April 1808; Lieutenant-General 4 June 1813; General 1830; died 1847.

Lt. Col. Henry Addison Wright

Major in 25th Foot 19 December 1794; Lieutenant-Colonel 23 August 1799; retired July 1800.

Lt. Col. Tomlinson Busby

Deputy Adjutant-General in Leeward Islands July 1796; Major in 25th Foot 10 August 1796; Lieutenant-Colonel 3 July 1800; retired July 1803.

Lt. Col. John Stewart

Major in 25th Foot 23 August 1799; Lieutenant-Colonel 23 July 1803; died February 1811.

Lt. Col. Francis Princep Scott

Major in 25th Foot 3 July 1800; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 7 May 1808; Lieutenant-Colonel 21 February 1811; commanded 1/25th Foot 1811; commanded 2/25th Foot 1812 and 1813; died June 1813.

Lt. Col. Arthur Aylmer

Born Ireland 1772; Major in 108th Foot 21 June 1794; Major in Manx Fencibles 1 July 1798; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 1 January 1800 (68th Foot); on half-pay 1802; Major in 48th Foot 11 July 1803; Lieutenant-Colonel in 25th Foot 16 August 1804 (on transfer from 48th Foot); on half-pay 68th Foot by May 1807; subsequently Major-General 4 June 1813; Lieutenant-General 27 May 1825; died 1831.

Lt. Col. John Alexander Farquharson

Major in 25th Foot 23 July 1803; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 25 July 1810; Lieutenant-Colonel 4 June 1813; commanded 1/25th Foot 1815; Governor of St. Martin and Guadeloupe 1815; brevet Colonel 12 August 1819.

Lt. Col. Alexander Whalley Light

Major in 25th Foot 1 August 1804; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 4 June 1811; commanded 2/25th Foot 1811;  Lieutenant-Colonel 1 July 1813; on half-pay 1820; brevet Colonel 27 May 1825; retired to Canada in 1840s.

Major John Taylor

Major in 25th Foot 2 August 1804; Lieutenant-Colonel in Lord Taylor’s Regiment February 1805.

Major Vincent Willem van Hompesch

Major in 25th Foot 28 February 1805 (on transfer from 85th Foot); brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 1 January 1812; on half-pay unattached 1815; brevet Colonel 1847.

Lt. Col. George-Robert Ainslie

Born Edinburgh 1776; served in Flanders 1793 to 1794; Major in 85th Foot 27 July 1799; served in Helder 1799; Lieutenant-Colonel Birmingham Fencibles 1 January 1800; Inspector of Volunteers in Lincolnshire 1800 to 1806; Lieutenant-Colonel in 5th Garrison Battalion 5 March 1802; Lieutenant-Colonel in 25th Foot 21 May 1807; brevet Colonel 25 July 1810; commanded 1/25th Foot 1807 to 1813; Governor of Eustacius and Dominica 1812 to 1814; subsequently Major-General 4 June 1813; Lieutenant-General 27 May 1825; died Edinburgh 1839.

Major Alexander Wolfe McDonald

Served in Helder 1799; served in Egypt 1801; served on Martinique 1809; Major in 25th Foot 7 March 1811; commanded 2/25th Foot in Holland 1813; brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 12 August 1819.

Major James Peat

Major in 25th Foot 4 June 1813; on half-pay 1820.

Major Abraham Alexander Freer

Major in 25th Foot 1 July 1813.

Sources:

War Office. Army Lists 1796 to 1815. London: various years.

The United Service Journal and Naval and Military Magazine. London: Henry Colburn & Richard Bentley, 1832.

Chichester, Henry Manners, and Burges-Short, Henry. The Records and Badges of Every Regiment and Corps in the British Army. London: William Clowes & Sons, 1895.

McKenna, Michael G. The British Army – And Its Regiments and Battalions. West Chester, Ohio: The Nafziger Collection. 2004.

Park, S.J. and Nafziger, G.F. The British Miltary – Its System and Organization 1803-1815. Cambridge, Ontario: Rafm Co. Inc. 1983.

Philippart, John. The Royal Military Calendar, or Army Service and Commission Book. London: A.J. Valpy, 1820.

Reid, Stuart. Wellington’s Officers, Volume 1. Leigh-On-Sea: Partizan Press, 2008.

Westlake, Ray. English & Welsh Infantry Regiments - An Illustrated Record of Service 1662-1994. Staplehurst: Spellmount, 2002.

London Gazette Website. September 2009.

 

Placed on the Napoleon Series: September 2009

 

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