At the outbreak of war in August 1914 the Grenadier Guards consisted of just three battalions, and the regiment moved quickly in forming a 4th battalion. The 4th battalion became known as the service battalion, and a 5th ‘reserve’ Battalion was then formed and primarily used for ceremonial duties in London and Windsor.
The 2nd Battalion arrived in France early in August 1914, with the 1st Battalion arriving in Belgium in October 1914. They were involved in the early stages of the fighting during the period known as the ‘Race to the Sea’ and were significantly involved during the 1st Battle of Ypres, during October and November 1914.
During February 1915 the Grenadier Guards regiment transferred 5 officers and 634 other ranks, to the newly formed unit of Welsh Guards. This was in recognition to the significant contribution Welshmen had made to The Grenadier Guards, and who, on occasions were referred to as the ‘Foreign Legion’ by my father’s generation of Grenadiers. With the formation of the Welsh Guards, Lord Kitchener’s vision of a ‘Guards Division’ became a reality consisting of three brigades each with four battalions. The Grenadier Guards were involved in many significant battles including: Arras, Cambrai, Hindenburg Line, and the Somme.
- The following pages list Cemeteries and Memorials of the fallen, by country:-
- The following pages list Medal awards, by Rank:-
- Regimental Sergeant Major: ‘M.C’ and ‘D.C.M’.
- Company Sergeant Major: ‘D.C.M’ and ‘M.M’.
- Company Quartermaster Sergeant: ‘D.C.M’ and ‘M.M’.
- Colour Sergeant: ‘M.M’.
- Sergeant: ‘V.C’, ‘D.C.M’ and ‘M.M’.
- Lance Sergeant: ‘M.M’.
- Corporal: ‘D.C.M’.
- Lance Corporal: ‘D.C.M’ and ‘M.M’.
- Private: ‘R.V.M’, ‘V.C’, ‘D.C.M’ and ‘M.M’.