KOSB veterans to mark Battle of Minden

VETERANS of the King's Own Scottish Borderers Association are once again preparing to celebrate the Anniversary of the Battle of Minden.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 14th July 2010, 11:14 am
Updated Wednesday, 14th July 2010, 11:14 am

A parade will be held at Berwick Barracks on Saturday, July 31. The Reviewing Officer will be Brigadier AC Jackson, President of the KOSB Association.

"Minden" was the second Battle Honour awarded to the 25th (Edinburgh) Regiment, as the King's Own Scottish Borderers were then called, and the battle is celebrated on August 1 every year.

During the Seven Years War against the French, a force of six British Battalions, seven German Battalions and Allied Cavalry, was operating in the valley of the River Weser near the town of Minden.

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The British Battalions were ordered to take a minor objective, but owing to a misunderstanding, advanced on the main body of the French Army.

Seeing the advance of a small force the French sent their cavalry 10,000 strong to the charge. The six British Battalions halted and at close range and with well aimed, disciplined volleys, broke up the attack.

The enemy cavalry reformed on six separate occasions and returned to the charge. Only on one occasion did a squadron succeed in penetrating the front rank and they were almost annihilated by the second rank. Finally all 75 squadrons were sent flying in disorder.

The British Infantry continued their advance and coming under the crossfire of 60 guns and musketry fire from the enemy infantry, suffered heavily.

The enemy lost 7,000 men compared to the British and German losses of 2,800, of which over 1,500 were lost by the six British Battalions.

Visiting the scene of the Battle afterwards Prince Ferdinand remarked "It was here that the British Infantry won Immortal Glory".

In memory of ancestors who earned this great Battle Honour and who plucked roses from the gardens of Minden as they went forward to the battle, members of the Minden Regiments wear roses in their head dress on this proud day.

The parade will also mark the service of the KOSB in Northern Ireland, where the Battalion completed a total of 12 tours from 1970 through to 2006.

Throughout these tours the Battalion, in the face of opposition from both Republican and Loyalist terrorists, exercised restraint and even-handedness, helping to smooth the progress towards the current Peace Process. The Battalion lost a total of seven men and had many injured.

Lieutenant Colonel George Wood, the KOSB Regimental Secretary, said that he expects a great turnout of veterans and their families on the day. They also hope that their 'In Pensioners' from the Royal Hospital Chelsea will be able to join them, wearing their distinctive red tunics.

The day will commence with a display of bands and dancers on the Barracks square from 10.30am.

Taking part will be the Central Band of the Royal British Legion Scotland, the Inter Scaldis Pipe Band from Holland, the Berwick RBLS Pipe Band the Eyemouth RBL Pipe Band. Also, a local group of children, "Nancy's" Dancers will entertain.

The entertainment will be followed by the presentation of roses, a marchpast through the town, refreshments and lunch. The parade will depart the Barracks at 12.30pm, passing the Guildhall at approximately 12.40pm.