Our Hero Horse number 14 is nominated by historian Richard Houghton who is one of our Ambassador Volunteers and a great friend to War Horse Memorial and our appeal. Richard, who lives near Ormskirk, in Lancashire, tells us that Quicksilver, a large grey charger, deserves his place in our hall of fame because of his unswerving loyalty to his friend and rider Sir Percy Laurie during the First World War and afterwards.
Quicksilver was wounded by Shrapnel at the Battle of the Somme and returned to London in 1919 after spending some time with the army of the Rhine, whereupon he joined the Police with his Master, During his time with the Police, Quicksilver raised £275 on behalf of the Royal Veterinary College donated into his Nosebag!
After the War, Quicksilver was often seen in important London cavalcades, including the funeral processions of distinguished generals, having followed his master, who became Chief of the Mounted Branch at Scotland Yard. On these occasions, Quicksilver always wore his ‘decorations’ – the Order of the Blue Cross and the 1916-18 Victory and General Service Medals on his headstall. He was gifted to Sir Percy in 1936 on the occasion of his retirement from the mounted police and the two continued to ride to hounds for many years. He was over 28 when he died.
About Brigadier Sir Percy Robert Laurie KCVO CBE DSO… he was a British Army and police officer. Laurie was born in Sevenoaks, Kent, and educated at Harrow School. He was commissioned Second Lieutenant in the 3rd London Volunteer Rifle Corps in August 1901 and transferred to the Regular Army in the Royal Scots Greys in March 1902. He was stationed with his regiment in South Africa for the aftermath of the Second Boer War, and promoted Lieutenant in October 1903. In October 1909 he was appointed regimental adjutant. In August 1911 he became ADC to General Sir Charles Douglas, General Officer Commanding Southern Command, and was promoted Captain in October 1911, in March 1912 he accompanied Douglas as ADC when he became Inspector-General of the Home Forces, and in 1914 he accompanied him again as personal assistant to the Chief of the Imperial General Staff.