Service in Scotland

Service in Scotland

By February 1691 Cunningham’s Dragoons were an established unit of King William’s Army in Scotland. The 7th could always boast of being one of the only two surviving regiments of cavalry raised in Scotland.

The first years of Cunningham’s Dragoon’s service north of the border were without noteworthy events, all the troops being dispersed among the Highlands.

In March 1692 the regiment was brought to Edinburgh to assist in law and order duties but it was not until 1694 that it was sent to Flanders to join The King’s Army marching and counter-marching for the next three years and subjected to the odd review.

Cunningham’s Dragoons

Cunningham’s Dragoons

They were present at the capture of Namur in 1695 and fought alongside The 3rd and The 4th periodically. Two years later the regiment came home to Scotland for a dozen peaceful years policing the Lowlands during which in 1709 The Hon William Ker took over the Colonelcy and led the regiment onto the continent for the final year before the Treaty of Utrecht in which there were only minor skirmishes, from where they were ordered to Ireland.

In August 1713 Parliament shortsightedly reduced the Army, The King’s Jacobite-minded political adviser Bolingbroke weeding out the Protestant Regiments.

In the spring of 1714 came disbandment. Ker’s Dragoons, despite their seniority, were one of the first to go, alongside Pepper’s Dragoons, later the 8th Hussars. Some men, however, are absorbed by the Royal Dragoons and the Scots Greys.

Within 18 months George I, the new King, had re-raised the regiment to help him deal with The Old Pretender and the Jacobite Army, adding, a few months later the first title of the regiment, which was the excessively cumbersome “Our Dear Daughter Her Royal Highness the Princess of Wales’s Own Royal Regiment of Dragoons.

In November 1715 they fought the rebels in November at Sheriffmuir. The battle was indecisive and apart from Ker himself having two horses shot under him, the regiment did nothing exemplary. The “fifteen” died out and for 27 years Ker’s Dragoons did no fighting.

Thereafter the various troops of the regiment were scattered about in quarters in Scotland. Here they remained until 1716 when they marched to stations in England.

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