King's Own Royal Regiment Museum


Museum & Collections
Soldiers of the Regiment
Contact Us

17th Century
18th Century
19th Century
20th Century
First World War
Second World War
Actions & Movements
Battle Honours

Further Reading


Soldiers of the Regiment

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson, 5th Battalion King's Own

5th Battalion at Kirkham Camp, Lancashire, 1912.  Standing is Major Bates and seated right is Colour Sergeant Richard Watson.
Accession Number: KO0104/21
Colour Sergeant Richard Watson, of the 5th Battalion, attended over fifty camps and one report indicates he spent his 53rd camp by invitation of the officers so that his fine record might not be broken. He had 13 service stars, each denoting four years and was ‘well over seventy’.

Volunteer Long Service Medal, Regimental Medal for 21 years service, and 1911 Coronation Medal to Colour Sergeant Richard Watson
Accession Number: KO0765/09, 10 & 11.

Volunteer Regimental Medal to Colour Sergeant Richard Watson.
Accession Number: KO0765/10

Certificate of Good Service to Colour Sergeant Watson of the 1st Volunteer Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment dated 31st October 1898.  He had served from 6th April 1863 with the Lancashire Rifle Volunteers, nearly twenty years prior to the creation of the 1st Volunteer Battalion.
Accession Number: KO0489/01

From the Lancaster Guardian, 10 May 1919.
Death of an Old Volunteer
One of the best known figures in Lancaster passed away suddenly on Monday, by the death of Mr Richard Watson, brush manufacturer, 72 Dallas Road. It is interesting to note in view of recent educational developments that Mr. Watson was apprenticed to Mr Wane, brush manufacturer in King Street (the shop now occupied by Mr. Brockbank) at the age of 9. He had worked no less than 71 years, first under Mr Wane, then under Messrs. Marsden, father and son, successors in New Street, and since June 1896 he had been proprietor of the business, which, 17 years ago was transferred to Church Street, the site being required by the Co-operative Society.
Mr Watson married on 25 Dec 1862 Miss Hannah Patterson, second daughter of Mr William Patterson, cabinet maker, shed died in 1899. Mr Watson was summoned from the Isle of Man where he was in training with the Volunteers, and found his wife dead, and the same day his shop caught fire, so misfortune did not come singly.
Of their family one son and three daughters (Mrs Postlethwaite, Mrs C Riley and Mrs F Atkinson who is in America) survive.
The death of his daughter, Jessie, last July was a great blow to him as she assisted in the business.
He was working till Saturday, and called at the shop on Sunday for his letters. Heart trouble caused the end.
Mr Watson will be remembered chiefly for his remarkable career as a Volunteer. He joined the Lancaster Corps in 1863 when Mr Henry Gregson was Captain. The Drill Hall was then in Brewery Lane in premises now belonging to Messrs Yates and Jackson. His enthusiasm for Volunteering was unique, being made Sergeant four years later. He rose to the rank of Colour Sergeant and and president of the Sergeants Mess. The Lancaster Volunteers drilled subsequently in the Exchange Hall, then the Assembly room, and then the Drill Hall in Phoenix Street was built about 25 years ago (1894).
Colour Sergeant Watson was a keen marksman, and won many prizes, including the Borough Challenge Cup. He was most exemplary in his attendance at drill, and was awarded the Battalion Silver Medal for 21 years continuous service in Sep 1886, while in Mar 1895 he was decorated with the Queen’s Medal for over 30 years service as a Volunteer, along with the late Drum Major Lamb. In Jul 1919, Colour Sergeant Watson received from Dr. Lamport an oak barometer was a recognition of services rendered to the St. John Ambulance Brigade, by granting the free use of the Assembly rooms, of which he was a tenant for many years.
Mr Watson was proud of his record for attending Volunteer Camps, which was unsurpassed. In 1895 he had been to 26 camps, and had doubled this in 1914, when he went to Kirkby Lonsdale, but the outbreak of the war caused the camp to be struck the second day. He went to visit the 1/5 King’s Own Territorials before they left for France, and often expressed regret that he could not go with them.
It was only fitting that a man with such a fine service record should be interred with Military Honours. The funeral took place on Thursday at Lancaster Cemetery.

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson, circa 1910.
Accession Number: KO1330/01

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson at Kirkham Camp, 1912.
Accession Number: KO1404/01

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson.
Accession Number: KO1404/02

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson, Volunteer Battalion, circa late 1890s.
Accession Number: KO1404/03

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson, 1st Volunteer Battalion, circa late 1890s.
Accession Number: KO1404/04

Sergeants of the 1st Volunteer Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, circa 1896.  Colour Sergeant Richard Watson is seated second from the right.
Accession Number: KO1404/05

Veterans of the 1st and 2nd Volunteer Battalion, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, with 126 years of service, Brackenber 1907.
On the left is Colour Sergeant Joseph Woodcock, in the centre is Colour Sergeant Richard Watson and the soldier on the right is not known.
Photograph ‘J. Hargreaves Series’
Accession Number: KO3100/62

3rd/5th Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, August 1916. Photograph noted as being presented by Colour Sergeant Richard Watson.
Accession Number: KO0408/13

Colour Sergeant Richard Watson.
Accession Number: KO0408/13a


Only a proportion of our collections are on display at anyone time.  Certain items are on loan for display in other institutions.  An appointment is required to consult any of our collections which are held in store.

© 2012-2018 Trustees of the King's Own Royal Regiment Museum