The Regimental Collection

The York and Lancaster Regimental collection consists of around 3,800 objects that originate from, or have an association with, the York and Lancaster Regiment or its forbears, the 65th and 84th Regiments of Foot. This includes material from any part of the world in which the Regiment served (principally India, New Zealand, Africa, and Europe) and cover all aspects of Regimental life during the period 1758 to 1968.

There is a good selection of material relating to the 65th Regiment of Foot (1758 to 1881), including a replica 1760s Private’s uniform and 1860s Officer’s tunic, sash and kepi. The collection also includes a number of items relating to the Regiment’s time in New Zealand including Fijian-style war clubs, Edward McKenna VC’s rank badge and watch chain and the impressive set of New Zealand Maori silver table pieces, which are ranked amongst the most important known items of New Zealand silver of the period.

The collection contains an excellent range of items relating to the 84th Regiment of Foot (1759 to 1881), including the Pipe Banner for the Royal Highland Emigrants, the Coatee and Shako worn by Captain Henry Stratham who fought during the Napoleonic Wars, and two Peninsula Gold Medals. The collection also includes a number of items relating to the Regiment’s time in India, including an 1855 Captain’s frock coat with sash, a locket commemorating the Siege of Lucknow and a piece of the masonry from the Lucknow Residency.

The collection also includes material related to the local Volunteer and Militia units, including a 3rd West Yorkshire Militia uniform from 1836 and material from the Hallamshire Rifle Volunteers.

The larger part of the collection relates to the York and Lancaster Regiment, from its inception in 1881 to disbandment in 1968. The majority of these are from the Boer War, and the First and Second World Wars. The collection also includes a First World War ration biscuit, used as a sort of post card to send home to his mother, with the line ‘Oh Mother Dear, I am so dry, I must eat this, or else I’ll die’.

The collection contains a large number of medals awarded to soldiers of the Regiment, including nine Victoria Crosses. The most significant group of medals and awards belonged to Field Marshal Plumer. The York and Lancaster Regimental collection now includes these items alongside Field Marshal Plumer’s uniforms and baton. It also has paintings of Plumer and other significant soldiers from the Regiment’s history, such as General Sir Eyre Coote and Col. Richard Lloyd, both of the 84th Foot.

There is of Regimental silver, much of which was either given to the Regiment by its officers and men, or won by them at sporting events. Another strength of the collection is items relating to the Regimental Bands, including Drum Major’s batons and a variety of drums and bugles. Some of the latest additions are the Freedom caskets and scrolls awarded to the Regiment from Rotherham, Barnsley and Pontefract.

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