Infantry Battalion Commanding Officers of the British Armies in the First World War

The site can be searched in two different ways. Each British regiment has its own page, reached via the index, with commanding officers listed by battalion. Dominion formations may be accessed through the links at the bottom of the index page.

If a name is underlined as a hyperlink, this will take the searcher to further information about that individual – sometimes on an external site. Alternatively, an individual’s surname can be searched for using the search box below.

Copyright Peter Hodgkinson 2018

Lt-Col William Henry Carter, MC and bar DSO, CO 13th Essex and 7th South Staffordshire.

Signalling Sergeant 2nd South Staffordshire, August 1914.

This site is devoted to the infantry battalion Commanding Officers of the British Armies of the First World War.

It is not definitive – it is a work-in-progress, and there will be errors. The hope is that all who use this site will be generous with their knowledge and contact the webmaster to provide corrections, new information and biographies.

So far over 5000 officers of British infantry regiments have been identified who commanded infantry units with the acting, temporary or substantive rank of Lieutenant-Colonel. Over 4000 saw active service.

In some cases officers below the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel who acted-up are listed, in other places not - such individuals are welcome inclusions.


Lt-Col William Robert Aufrere Dawson, DSO and 3 bars, CO 6th Royal West Kent.

2nd Lieutenant 1st Royal West Kent, August 1914.

Lt-Col John Ryrie Webster, DSO and bar, CO 16th Sherwood Foresters.

Timber merchant, India, August 1914.

For further reading on British Infantry COs see ‘British Battalion Commanders in the First World War’, by Peter E Hodgkinson, Ashgate, 2015.

Listing of infantry battalion commanders in the order of battle on 1 July 1916 on the Somme and their fates.