The regiment sailed in February 1900, and arrived in South Africa in the beginning of March. Along with the 7th Dragoon Guards and the 14th Hussars they formed the 4th Cavalry Brigade under Brigadier General Dickson. The work of the brigade has been sketched under the 7th Dragoon Guards.
On 1st May 1900 the Boers made a stand in a strong position at Houtnek, where Ian Hamilton's force had stiff work in turning them out. In his telegram of 2nd May Lord Roberts said, "Hamilton speaks in high terms of the services of the 8th Hussars under Colonel Clowes and a made-up regiment of Lancers, which came into Broadwood's brigade and assisted in making the Boers evacuate their position".
In the march from Machadodorp to Heidelberg the 8th and 14th Hussars and M Battery were under Colonel Mahon, who started on the 12th October. On the 13th Mahon "became heavily engaged near Geluk with a body of 1100 men with four guns. Although hardly pressed Mahon succeeded in holding his own until French came to his assistance, when the Boers were driven back in a south-easterly direction, having sustained some loss". The enemy were on this occasion very daring, and crept up through broken ground to within 100 yards. The 8th Hussars were for a time very hard pressed, but held on well. They lost 2 officers, Lieutenants P A T Jones and F H Wylam, and 7 men killed, and 2 officers and 8 men wounded.
Eight officers and 8 non-commissioned officers were mentioned in Lord Roberts' final despatches of 2nd April and 4th September 1901.
In the first quarter of 1901 the regiment was in the column of Colonel E C Knox, one of those which, starting near Springs, swept to the Swazi border.
During the later phases of the war the Eastern Transvaal to the borders of Zululand were the principal scenes of the regiment's operations, but a portion was for a time employed in the Orange River Colony.
One officer and 1 non-commissioned officer were mentioned by Lord Kitchener during the war, and in the final despatch the names of 4 officers, 2 non-commissioned officers, and 1 private were added.
Colonel Le Gallais of the 8th Hussars had done splendid service as a leader of Mounted Infantry, and he fell when he had just inflicted a most severe defeat on De Wet at Bothaville on 6th November 1900 (see 1st Oxfordshire Light Infantry). Colonel Mahon, also an old 8th Hussar, earned his country's gratitude by his conduct of the Mafeking Relief column.
See the forum posts on the 8th Hussars.
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