Hugh, affectionately known as “Hughie” died on the 31st of January 2015 aged 87.

Maj H Burroughs, MBE
Maj H Burroughs, MBE

On leaving school at 14 he became a Telegraph boy with the aim of a career in the Post Office but then on his 18th birthday in September 1945 he joined the army cadets. This determined his career to join the Regular Army which he did while carrying out his early training at Bovington.

On completion in 1946, he was posted to the 2nd Royal Tank Regiment in Trieste and then on to his first introduction to Luneburg Germany, which he was to know even better during the many years when the 8th Hussars were stationed there.

In 1948 he was promoted to Sergeant and whilst on a Gunnery Instructors Course at Lulworth Camp he met and married Chris, his wife of nearly 67 years.

Shortly afterwards he was posted and sailed for Japan to join ‘K’ Squadron the special unit responsible for training the Reservists on the new Centurion tank and support for the 8th Hussars in Korea. It was then that he made the decision, which he never regretted, to change his cap badge and join the 8th Hussars and as a result, the Regiment gained an outstanding character in every respect.

On moving from Japan Hughie first served in ‘C’ Squadron under the command of Major Henry Huth, and when the Regiment returned from the campaign to Germany to be stationed in Luneburg he remained with the Squadron and was given accelerated promotion to Squadron Sergeant Major where he proved to be a great success.

Further promotion came when in 1959 he was promoted to WO1 and served as RSM to the North Irish Horse and then rejoined the Regiment in Tidworth as RSM prior to the Regiment’s overseas tour to Aden and the Far East.

Sufficient to say that his tour as RSM was both a very happy and successful period, where his combined enthusiasm and drive ensured a very efficient Sergeants Mess in both the social and military spheres of its activities.

He was a soldier who set the highest standards and his example was reflected throughout the Regiment. He was justly rewarded when he was granted a commission, the first Warrant Officer to be commissioned into the Regiment under a new War Office scheme, and took up the appointment of MTO and Administrative Officer.

For all those fortunate enough to have served with him during this period there will be very many personal recollections and tales to be told not only on the technical aspects of his professionalism but also on the human side.

Hugh’s next step in his career was his appointment as Technical Quartermaster and it was here that his qualities were soon to be appreciated as the Regiment always remained mobile despite the difficulties at the time of spare parts and resupply.

After a very successful period, he then moved up to become the Regimental Quartermaster and it was here that his obvious all-round capabilities were tested to the full, especially during the Regiment’s unaccompanied tour in Cyprus. It was a just reward for all his devoted service and loyalty when he was awarded the MBE in 1977.

After completing his appointment as QM in 1981 he retired from the Regiment after 35 years of distinguished service.

On returning to his home in Wool he became an RO (retired officer) as the Range Officer at the Lulworth Gunnery School.

This was a job he did with his usual enthusiasm and in particular, was greatly involved in the restoration of Tyneham village which had been sadly neglected since being commandeered for military training at the beginning of the war.

As his final act, with his Regiment always in mind, Hughie decided to establish a new branch of the Regimental Association — Wool Troop. This was ‘kicked off’ with a dinner attended by the then Deputy Colonel, Brigadier John Paley and over forty founder members, on Paddy’s day on the 17th Match 1977.

As Chairman he continued to organise many events and lead this most popular forum with an unflagging enthusiasm for 16 years until handing over to Albert Hogg in 1993 on the amalgamation of the Queen’s Own Hussars and Queen’s Royal Irish Hussar’s Associations.

He left behind a now equally strong and happy Wool Troop incorporating the two Regiments – The Queen’s Royal Hussars.

Hugh Burroughs was indeed a very special person and will be remembered by all those who knew him for a long time to come.

Our thoughts are very much with Chris, his great support for so many years, and his devoted family.

Related topics

  1. A short history of The 8th Hussars
  2. A short history of The Queen’s Royal Irish Hussars
  3. Korea 1950-51
  4. Aden and The Persian Gulf 1961
  5. Malaya and Borneo 1962-64