Death or Glory: The 17th/21st Lancers 1922-1993

Author(s): Kevin Shannon 

ISBN: 9781781558201
£28.00 £40.00
For the first time in print, the complete history of the elite British cavalry regiment: the 17th/21st Lancers.
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  • Beautifully illustrated with many rare and unpublished photographs

  • Compiled mainly from unpublished sources, including regimental archives 

  • Every action during the Second World War covered in detail, including the names of all casualties, wounded and killed 

  • The personal stories of those who served during the Second World War, Greece, Palestine, BAOR, Northern Ireland and the Gulf War 

  • Foreword by Brigadier Andrew Hughes CBE, former Colonel of the Royal Lancers (Queen Elizabeths’ Own)

During its seventy-one years of existence, the 17th/21st Lancers became one of the best-known British cavalry regiments of all time. Beloved by the press as the ‘Death or Glory Boys’, their renowned skull and crossbones ‘motto’ was one of the most recognised cap badges of the British Army.

Death or Glory: The 17th/21st Lancers 1922-1933, written by a former member of the Regiment, tells their complete story for the first time, much of which is in the words of those who served.

The Regiment’s role during the Second World War at home as well as North Africa, Italy, Austria, Greece and Palestine in the aftermath of the war, including four years of service in Northern Ireland at the height of the ‘Troubles’ and the Gulf War – where one of its crews achieved the longest ever direct-fire tank kill – are covered in exhaustive detail.

Personal accounts add colour to descriptions of routine life for a cavalry regiment in Egypt and India as well as an armoured regiment during the Cold War serving in Germany, Hong Kong, Libya, Yemen and Belize.

Appendices include a definitive Roll of Honour with all Commanding Officers, Colonels of the Regiment and RSMs.

BOOK ISBN 9781781558201
FORMAT 248 x 172 mm
BINDING Hardback
PAGES 416 pages
PUBLICATION DATE 21 January 2021
ILLUSTRATIONS 96 black-and-white and 32 colour photographs



Kevin Shannon’s father, Bill, took part in Operation Tonga. Shannon spent ten years in the British Army, serving in a number of regiments. After many years of teaching history in a secondary school, he now works with young people with behavioural problems.