There is evidence from the diaries of King Edward’s Horse members that at least some of the Regiment continued to wear their old King’s Colonials Squadron headdress and collar badges through into the Great War. Lieutenant Allan Wettenhall Lade writes in a letter
to his mother on the 13th December 1914, ‘I have just bought one of my own a very smart affair riding breeches and now have collar badges of Australian birth…the Kangaroo. Every man in our troop has the distinctive badge of his Colony – India an Elephant, Africa an Ostrich, Canada a beaver and so on.’ Corporal Brian (Frederick) Wade, King Edward’s Horse writes: ‘For some time I have been trying to obtain a cap-badge to complete the set, and tonight I am posting to you a set of three; cap, collar and shoulder badges (Brian Wade. Peace, War & Afterwards (1914-1919).
Halifax: Sentinel Projects, 1996). The largest is worn on the front of the cap, the smallest on the collar-lapel, and the numerals on the shoulder- badge mean “King Edward’s Horse = “Kings Overseas Dominions Regiment”. The collar badges are, I think, the most interesting, the ostrich with a background of ‘koppies’ and mountains backed by the sun which is so typically South Africa.’
The photograph in Figure 340 of Trooper Godfrey John Buckland, King Edward’s Horse shows the ‘C’ Squadron (Australian) kangaroo collar badges being worn with a King Edward’s Horse headdress badge. The ‘C’ Squadron (Australian) collar badges are also shown on the King Edward’s Horse tunic in Figure 143. The original King’s Colonials Squadron collar badges were still favoured by some members of King Edward’s Horse up until at least 1915.Figure 340: Photograph of Private Godfrey John Buckland (Regimental number 583) of King Edward’s Horse in Service Dress uniform circa 1914 with 1903-pattern, Mounted Infantry leather 50 round .303 bandolier and King Edward’s Horse Regimental headdress badge and ‘C’ Squadron (Australian) collar badges (Peter Nemaric collection).
Officer's wore the third pattern circlet headdress badge with either the circlet pattern collar badges or with earlier first or second pattern collar badges as in the photograph of Lieutenant Colonel James shown in Figure 341.Figure 341: Lieutenant Colonel Lionel James DSO wearing a King Edward’s Horse (KK 1509) Officer's circlet headdress badge with first or second pattern collar badges (Lieutenant Colonel Lionel James The History of King Edward's Horse (The King's Overseas Dominions Regiment). London: Sifton, Praed & Co, 1921).
Collar badges were generally not worn by Other Ranks of the King Edward’s Horse from 1915 onwards (Figure 342).Figure 342: Sergeant G. H. Tiplady (seated centre of the second row) and his Troop of ‘A’ Squadron of King Edward’s Horse at Canterbury in August 1914 without collar badges (The King Edward’s Horse Senior and Junior Comrades Association Annual Bulletin. Number 20: 13, 1953).