The formation of the Army Cyclist Corps was authorised by Army Order 477 of 1914, which was dated 7 November 1914. More detailed instructions were given in Army Order 478.
A number of cyclist units already existed:
The primary roles of the cyclists were reconnaissance and communications (message taking). They were armed as infantry and could provide mobile firepower if required. Those units that went overseas continued in these roles but also (one the mobile phase of war had settled down into entrenched warfare) spent much time in trench-holding duties and on manual work.
In May and June 1916 the divisional cyclist companies were withdrawn to form a cyclist battalion for each Corps Headquarters (so for example, the IX Corps Divisional Cyclist Battalion came into existence and was a unit of the Army Cyclist Corps).
War diaries exist for most of the cyclist units and are held at the National Archives. There is no published regimental history and no regimental museum.
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