Book Review: The Royal Dragoon Guards

The Royal Dragoon Guards By Peter Macfarlane

This 80-page history of the famous unit has been expertly written by a former member of its ranks and his in-depth knowledge and passion for subject shines through. The Royal Dragoon Guards was founded in 1685 and fought in all of Britain’s major wars from the late 17th century onwards. Its combat record is most impressive, charging at Blenheim with Marlborough’s cavalry, at Waterloo with the Union Brigade and at Balaklava with the Heavy Brigade. In the 19th century, it also saw service in India and Africa. The Dragoons fought in France and Flanders during World War One and one regiment fired the first British shot on the Western Front. In World War Two it played a leading role in the D-Day landings. Recent conflicts have taken the regiment to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Peter examines the regiment’s development, highlighting (to a lesser extent) key figures across its history. There’s plenty of photographs inside the book’s covers – most of which were previously unseen by the reviewer – plus a couple of dozen drawings/painting. This book hits the mark by providing sufficient detail without being overlong, and it’s far from a ‘dry’ read – not an easy task for a regimental history. (Reviewed by Nigel Price)

Publisher: Osprey:

Softback: 80 pages. ISBN: 978-1-4728-3859-9.  RRP: £13.99


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