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Waterloo > Alllied Army > Cavalry Corps

Light Cavalry Division

The 3rd British Cavalry Brigade
Maj-Gen. Sir William Dornberg (w)

A predominantly German speaking brigade ,with the two KGL regiments almost at full strength.
The CO of 23rd Light Dragoons, Lord Portalington, missed the start of the battle, as he was late back from Brussels, where he had gone AWOL. Maj. Cutcliffe commanded at Waterloo and Portalington never recovered from the disgrace, eventually dying in penury.
They were initially deployed behind the Allied right centre with Colin Halkett's infantry in front. They were involved in counterattacking the French cavalry that penetrated between the Allies' squares. They joined in the general Allied advance that pushed the French back after the repulse of the Imperial Guard.

Casualties 310 (2%) which were the lowest for any British cavalry brigade.


23rd Light Dragoons (3 sqns)
Maj. J.M. Cutcliffe (w)
341 men


1st Light Dragoons (KGL) (4 sqns)
Lt-Col. J. B
ϋlow (w)
540 men


2nd Light Dragoons (KGL) (4 sqns)
Lt-Col. C. de Jonquieres
520 men


The 4th British Cavalry Brigade
Maj-Gen. Sir John Vandeleur

A typical British light cavalry brigade of average strength with three squadrons per regiment.
It was used to cover the withdrawal of the remnants of the Union Brigade. During this action it charged Pégot's brigade of Durutte's division.
As the next senior cavalry general Vandeleur took over command of the whole of the Allied cavalry when Uxbridge was wounded in the evening. Lt-Col Sleigh assumed command of the brigade.

Losses of 319 (23%) occurred mostly during the brigade's advance against French rear guards after the Imperial Guard's repulse.


11th Light Dragoons (3 sqns)
Lt-Col. J.W. Sleigh
442 men


12th Light Dragoons (3 sqns)
Lt-Col. Hon. F.C. Ponsonby (w)
433 men


16th Light Dragoons (3 sqns)
Lt-Col. J. Hay (w)
440 men


5th British Cavalry Brigade
Maj-Gen. Sir Colquhoun Grant (w)

A light cavalry brigade with one regiment (
2nd Hussars KGL) still away on the frontier around Courtrai, that was replaced for the battle by the 13th LD.
Grant was wounded and had five horses shot under him.

Deployed from the start behind the 1st (Guards) Division on the Allied right, this brigade was heavily engaged.
It took part in numerous cavalry charges throughout the afternoon against French cavalry attacking Allied squares.

Losses 392 (31%) - many during encounters with French cavalry.


7th Hussars (3 sqns)
Lt-Col. Sir Edward Kerrison
362 men


15th Hussars (3 sqns)
Lt-Col. L.C. Dalrymple (w)
450 men


13th Light Dragoons (3 sqns)
Maj. S. Boyse (w)
455 men


The 6th British Cavalry Brigade
Maj-Gen. Sir Hussey Vivian

The light cavalry brigade holding the extreme left (east) of the Allied line. It was the only British cavalry brigade to retain its RHA troop under command for the battle.
It saw little action until evening when it was moved (with 4th Cavalry Brigade) behind the centre.
The brigade was involved in several actions against the retiring French cavalry at the end of the battle.

Casualties amounted to 208 (13%). The 1st Hussars (KGL) only suffered one man killed out of ten casualties.
At 1.6% this was the least of any Allied unit in the battle.


10th Hussars (3 sqns)
Lt-Col G. Quentin (w)
452 men


18th Hussars (3 sqns)
Lt-Col Hon. H. Murray
447 men


1st Hussars KGL (3 sqns)
Lt-Col A. Wissell
605 men


'E' Troop RHA
Capt. Sir Robert Gardiner
5 x 6-pdrs, 1 x 5.5-in. howitzer, 180 men.


The 7th British Cavalry Brigade
Col. Sir Frederick Arenschildt

This brigade fought as a single (strong) regiment under the supervision of Arenschildt who personally led it forward against French cuirassiers.
(The 13th Light Dragoons were attached to the 5th British cavalry brigade.)
Deployed initia lly behind right centre.

Losses 136 (19%).


3rd Hussars KGL (4 sqns)
Lt-Col. F.L. Meyer (k)
712 men


The Hanoverian Cavalry Brigade
Col. Baron Estorff (not present at Waterloo)

Prince Regent's Hussars and Bremen & Verden Hussars were posted near Hal under Col Estorff and saw no action.
The Cumberland Hussars consisted of young wealthy Hanoverian gentlemen who provided their own horses and equipment.
During the French cavalry attacks the Cumberland Hussars came under fire, refused to advance and broke ranks to flee back to Brussels. Col Hake spurned all pleas to rally his regiment and was later court-martialled.

Losses 61 (12%).


Duke of Cumberland's Hussars (4 sqns)
Lt-Col. Hake
516 men

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