THE HOUSEHOLD CAVALRY JOURNAL 2011/12
The Household Cavalry Journal
Incorporating The Acorn and The Blue and Royal No. 20 2011/12 Editor: Lt Col (Retd) HSJ Scott, The Life Guards
Colonel in Chief Her Majesty The Queen
Colonel of The Life Guards and Gold Stick: General the Lord Guthrie of Craigiebank GCB, LVO, OBE, DL Colonel of The Blues and Royals and Gold Stick: HRH The Princess Royal KG, KT, GCVO, QSO Commander Household Cavalry and Silver Stick: Colonel SH Cowen, The Blues and Royals Commanding Ofﬁcer Household Cavalry Regiment: Lieutenant Colonel J P Eyre, The Blues and Royals Commanding Ofﬁcer Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment: Lieutenant Colonel D E Hughes, The Blues and Royals
The Life Guards Battle Honours Dettingen Peninsula Waterloo Tel el Kebir Egypt (1882) Relief of Kimberley Paardeberg South Africa (1899-1900) Mons Le Cateau Retreat from Mons Marne (1914) Aisne (1914)
Armentières (1914) Messines (1914) Ypres (1914) Langemarck (1914) Gheluvelt Nonne Bosschen St Julien Frezenberg Ypres (1915) Somme (1916) Albert (1916) Scarpe (1917) (1918) Broodseinde Poelcappelle
Passchendaele Bapaume (1918) Arras (1917) Ypres (1917) Arras (1918) Hindenburg Line Epehy St Quentin Canal Beaurevoir Cambrai (1918) Selle Somme (1918) France and Flanders (1914-18)
Mont Pincon Souleuvre Noireau Crossing Amiens (1944) Brussels Neerpelt Nederrijn Nijmegen Lingen Bentheim North West Europe (1944-1945) Baghdad (1941) Iraq (1941)
Palmyra Syria (1941) El Alamein North Africa (1942-1943) Arezzo Advance to Florence Gothic Line Italy (1944)
Mont Pincon Souleuvre Noireau Crossing Amiens (1944) Brussels Neerpelt Nederrijn Lingen Veghel Nijmegen Rhine Bentheim North West Europe (1944-1945) Baghdad (1941) Iraq (1941) Palmyra
Syria (1941) Msus Gazala Knightsbridge Defence of Alamein Line El Alamein El Agheila Advance on Tripoli North Africa (1941-1943) Sicily (1943) Arezzo Advance to Florence Gothic Line Italy (1943-1944) Falkland Islands (1982) Iraq (2003)
Gulf (1991) Wadi al Batin Iraq (2003)
The Blues and Royals Battle Honours Tangier (1662-1680) Dettingen Warburg Beaumont Willems Fuentes d’Onor Peninsula Waterloo Balaklava Sevastopol Tel el Kebir Egypt (1882) Relief of Kimberley Paardeberg Relief of Ladysmith South Africa (1899-1902)
Mons Le Cateau Retreat from Mons Marne (1914) Aisne (1914) Messines (1914) Armentières (1914) Ypres (1914) Langemarck (1914) Gheluvelt Nonne Bosschen St Julien Ypres (1915) Frezenberg Loos Arras (1917)
Scarpe (1917) Ypres (1917) Broodseinde Poelcappelle Passchendaele Somme (1918) St Quentin Avre Amiens Hindenburg Line Beaurevoir Cambrai (1918) Sambre Pursuit to Mons France and Flanders (1914-1918)
Crown Copyright: This publication contains ofﬁcial information. It should be treated with discretion by the recipient. The opinions expressed in the articles in this journal are those of the authors and do not necessarily reﬂect the policy and views, ofﬁcial or otherwise, of the Household Cavalry or the Ministry of Defence. No responsibility for the goods or services advertised in this journal can be accepted by the Household Cavalry, publishers or printers and advertisements are including in good faith. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the permission of the Editor and Publisher. The Journal was designed and printed by Brian Smith Associates, 145 St Pancras, Chichester, West Sussex PO19 7SH. Tel: 01243 539999 Fax: 01243 539999 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contents Preface by The Commander Household Cavalry.......................... 3
Household Cavalry Regiment Foreword by the Commanding Ofﬁcer ......................................... 4 A Squadron ........................................................................................ 5 B Squadron ......................................................................................... 7 C Squadron ......................................................................................... 9 D Squadron ...................................................................................... 12 Headquarters Squadron ................................................................. 13 Command Troop ............................................................................. 15 Training Wing .................................................................................. 16 Regimental Administration Ofﬁce ................................................ 17
Quartermaster’s Department ......................................................... 17 Quartermaster Technical Department .......................................... 18 Light Aid Detachment .................................................................... 18 Warrant Ofﬁcers’ and Non Commissioned Ofﬁcers’ Mess ........ 21 The Band of The Blues and Royals ................................................ 23 Catering Department ...................................................................... 25 HCR Features ................................................................................... 27 Images from Household Cavalry Regiment ................................ 34
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment Foreword by the Commanding Ofﬁcer ........................................ 37 Diary of Events ................................................................................ 38 The Life Guards Squadron ............................................................. 40 The Blues and Royals Mounted Squadron .................................. 42 Headquarters Squadron ................................................................. 44 Quartermaster’s Department ......................................................... 47 The Forge .......................................................................................... 48 Regimental Administration Ofﬁce ................................................ 50 The Band of The Life Guards ......................................................... 50
Pages 68 - 77
Eagles Veterans RUFC Annual Report ......................................... 73 Army Cycling Championships ...................................................... 74 Boxing ............................................................................................... 75 Cricket ............................................................................................... 75 Golf Tour Diary - Scorched in Scottsdale ..................................... 76
News from the Associations The Life Guards Association Annual Report 2011 ...................... 78 Minutes of the 77th AGM and EGM of The Life Guards Association ....................................................... 78 The Life Guards Association and Charitable Trusts .................. 80 The Life Guards Association Notices ............................................ 82 The Life Guards Association Regional Representatives ............ 82 The Blues and Royals Association Annual Report 2011 ............. 84 Minutes of the AGM of The Blues and Royals Association ........ 86 The Blues and Royals Association Regional Representatives ... 87 Household Cavalry Museum ........................................................ 88 Household Cavalry Central Charitable Fund .............................. 89
Pages 37 - 67
Household Cavalry Training Wing .............................................. 52 Coach Troop ..................................................................................... 53 Equitation ......................................................................................... 53 Regimental Support Team ............................................................. 54 The Royal Wedding – A Soldier’s Viewpoint ............................ 56 Spruce Meadows 2011 .................................................................... 58 Images of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment .............. 62 The Royal Wedding - A Photo Montage ....................................... 64
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up Household Cavalry Golf 2011 ........................................................ 68 HCR Regimental Football .............................................................. 69 HCR Regimental Rugby ................................................................. 69 Household Cavalry Cresta Run Team 2011 ................................. 70 Regimental Sailing .......................................................................... 71 Swimming ........................................................................................ 72
Pages 4 - 35
Pages 78 - 136
Obituaries The Life Guards ............................................................ 90 Obituaries The Blues and Royals ................................................... 91 Nominal Rolls ................................................................................ 101 Notices ............................................................................................ 107 Household Cavalry Charities ...................................................... 109 Household Cavalry Associations Dorset ........................................................... 111 North Staffs .................................................. 113 North East .................................................... 114 Features .......................................................................................... 116
Cover Photographs: Front: The Captain’s Escort for TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge crossing Horse Guards. Back: ‘IN THE FOOTHILLS OF THE HINDU KUSH’ a painting of the HCR on operations in Afghanistan, by the artist Stuart Brown. The painting depicts a reconnaissance patrol from HCR taking a short halt before last light, in an area typical of northern Helmand, near the key town of Musa Q’aleh. The scene shows a mixed patrol equipped with a variety of vehicles and weapon systems used by the Regiment including the SCIMITAR and SPARTAN CVR(T) and the JACKAL 1. A limited number of copies are available and can be obtained through Home HQ, from Capt Dick Hennessy-Walsh LG Assn or Maj Paul Stretton RHG/D Association.
By Colonel S H Cowen, The Blues and Royals Commander Household Cavalry
ast year I described the uncertainty that faced defence with the Strategic Defence and Security Review, whilst still delivering on operations and ceremonial. In 2012, none of the uncertainty has been removed and, as I write, we await the recommendations of Lieutenant General Carter’s Future Force 2020 Review, which will have an impact on the Household Cavalry and Royal Armoured Corps, and the implications of a second phase of redundancy. At the same time, this Journal bears testament to the successes and demands placed on our two Regiments for the Royal Wedding, recuperations from two tours of Afghanistan and preparations for the Diamond Jubilee and another HERRICK deployment. Whilst both Commanding Ofﬁcers act as jugglers to HQ Army’s “Cirque de Soleil” of commitments, the Journal also illustrates the broader pastoral activities that the wider Household Cavalry “family” has been involved in from sport to adventure training and care for serving and retired members of the Regiments. It also includes the wonderful recollections of previous generations and provides a reminder to those serving currently that the tempo and challenges they are meeting are not new, and the heritage and reputation that they have inherited has been hard earned and remains highly respected in both the Army and wider society. These recollections also illustrates that an army career and regimental life is challenging and rewarding when not recovering from, preparing for and deploying on another operational tour whilst maintaining readiness for contingent operations – as some of us will recall in BAOR. As we know that HERRICK 18 is currently the last planned operational commitment, it is something that those serving need to understand and prepare for after a period of almost 20 years of being fully committed to the Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan. It is also 20 years since the union of The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals to deliver the Household Cavalry Regiment and Mounted Regiment. The precedent was not new as we have always operated closely and provided composite regiments on operations since the 19th century. I have therefore asked the Commanding Ofﬁcers, Associations, Operational Casualty Fund and the Museum Trust to look at how we deliver pastoral support across the wider Household Cavalry family through a Household Cavalry
Foundation. This in no way undermines the individual identities or the property of the Regiments but seeks to make us consistent and efﬁcient in the way we provide care for our serving and retired soldiers, maintain the fabric and property of the Regiments, and the way we communicate both internally within the regimental family and externally to a wider public. The reasons for this evolution are twofold; ﬁrst is that modern communications and media allow us to communicate more widely and quickly and we need to harness this opportunity to do this efﬁciently, and to ensure that the support we provide is done swiftly and effectively. The second is that the appointment of Commander Household Cavalry was taken as a savings measure in 2010 and lifed for my tenure; the Army, with the current drawdown in size, has now taken this saving early and I have been directed to increase my responsibilities as Colonel Household Cavalry and Royal Armoured Corps. This appointment has been distilled from the duties of Director Royal Armoured Corps, and takes on the responsibilities of the Head of Arm, an appointment that has reduced from Major General to Colonel since the Union. The appointment of Silver Stick in Waiting is retained and we are considering how the responsibilities of Commander Household Cavalry are discharged in the future. Whilst there is a military age of austerity and many uncertainties in the current army, there is much to commend regimental life, which is eloquently described in this Journal. The Regiment at Windsor is training for HERRICK 18, whilst preparing for future contingency with the re-established Lead Airborne Task Force. The Mounted Regiment is also extremely busy and demonstrating its wide utility from State Ceremonial for the Diamond Jubilee to support for Op OLYMPICS and UK resilience in London. Our wide and very efﬁcient spectrum of capabilities has allowed the Household Cavalry to stake a strong claim for a place in the Future Army of 2020, which will be announced this summer. The planned redundancy programme will cause us pain but I believe the Foundation will improve our support to those affected. Whilst there are some difﬁcult times to navigate and ride through, there are some important events to be planned for on the horizon. First is the Standards Parade, which I had hoped to coincide with the regiment’s return from HERRICK 18 in Autumn 2013. However this is not possible so
it is now planned for May 2014. This runs into the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War and many of our Battle Honours. Also the 200th Anniversary of Waterloo is being planned and, given its importance in the history of the Household Cavalry, will be fully celebrated in 2015. Whilst we are busy delivering the present and planning to celebrate our past, I am always hugely impressed and indebted to those who have done so much to fundraise to ensure the wider support to the Household Cavalry. The Operational Casualties Fund has established resources and the network of support to meet our current and future needs. The fund has raised over £1.2 million and hopes to meet its fundraising target in 2012. At the same time the Fund has also provided signiﬁcant support to our casualties and their families. The Museums, both in London and Windsor, are vibrant, well supported and visited. Their ﬁnancial position is more assured and whilst the Olympics will cause the London Museum to close, we continue to ensure that the bank loan is drawn down as swiftly as possible. Presently it has a delightful and surprising display of those Household Cavalrymen who have competed in the Olympics. I hope this Journal therefore describes the challenges of our current times, the plans for the future and reﬂections and recognition of our past. It underpins our heritage and illustrates why the current regiments are widely recognised and respected. We owe a great debt of thanks to the Regimental Adjutant in editing it. I hope you enjoy it and look forward to seeing everyone over the coming year.
Household Cavalry Regiment Foreword
By Lieutenant Colonel J P Eyre, The Blues and Royals Commanding Ofﬁcer, Household Cavalry Regiment
011 proved to be a most welcome year for the Regiment at Windsor; a rare year of consolidation, low level squadron and troop training and time for families and sport. With the safe return of D Sqn in April, from their third tour to Afghanistan on Op HERRICK 13, Combermere Barracks has been buzzing with all the Sabre Squadrons back in camp. For the Regiment, this unusual pause in tempo has allowed all to re-focus on core skills, career courses and some healthy fun. D Sqn’s successful winter tour with 16 Air Assault Brigade was thankfully relatively peaceful, compared to previous experiences. That is not to say it did not have its moments, which they dealt with in their customary decisive style, but their role in securing the key highway through the south was well executed and delivered with tenacity, courage and in many cases commendable restraint. The shrinking of the UK’s area of operations, and the establishment of more permanent operating bases, has inevitably reduced the freedom of manoeuvre and the hitherto enjoyed reconnaissance in depth, but the Squadron made the very best of its new task, and without stealing their thunder, the road was closed only once during their tenure and the Sqn returned intact. The few casualties suffered are making a remarkable recovery. The rest of the Regiment, having recovered from the Afghan exploits of 2010, has made the very most of their time back at Windsor. There has been a diverse and rich mixture of training throughout the year and we have been able to concentrate on essential low level skills, the building blocks for greater things. A Sqn temporarily provided the reconnaissance element of the Army’s Small Scale Contingency Force (SSCBG), with the 2nd Royal Regiment of Fusiliers Battle Group. B Sqn, as ever maintaining the kernel of the Brigade Reconnaissance Force, managed to seize training opportunities around the world, including Belize, Kenya, Brecon and Scotland. C Sqn returned with vigour to its primary role in CVR(T), conducting a variety of training from the Welsh Marches to the snowy uplands of Bavaria. After several years in Afghanistan
4 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
and Iraq with a number of temporary brigades (52 and 11), the Regiment has enjoyed its return to 1st Mechanized Brigade and its focus on the Adaptive Foundation, or in English, high intensity war ﬁghting. This return to our core role, albeit at Brigade level rather than Division, has ensured an unparalleled investment in training, all the more welcome in these stringent times. Consequently HCR looks forward to a comprehensive training year in 2012 and, in particular, a return to the prairies of Alberta (BATUS) in role as the Brigade Reconnaissance Regiment. Thereafter the bulk of the regiment will switch tack and focus for its return to Afghanistan in 2013. The Regiment, on paper, now ﬁelds two tracked sqns, a wheeled sqn (in Jackal), and the Command and Support Sqn. Of course we skin this slightly differently: as well as providing both tracked and wheeled capabilities to 1 Mechanized Brigade, we still provide D Sqn to 16 Air Assault Brigade as an essential part of the Airborne Task Force (ABTF), the national high readiness force. Additionally, B Sqn will provide the Brigade Reconnaissance Force, an essentially dismounted Sqn deployable by wheels, tracks or air. They have an onerous training bill, but the role appeals to the HCR recce soldier and they have already set about the challenge with vigour. Indeed, B Squadron claimed
one of the few and coveted Gold awards at the Cambrian Patrol this year. It would be remiss not to mention the Strategic Defence and Security Review and the impact of the cuts to the Armed Forces. There is concern, as there is across all the Public Sector, of the changes to terms and conditions of service and the future structures and role, and more tangibly we have already felt the pain and effect of redundancies in the Regiment. In March this year we should better understand the new shape of the British Army, and I am assured that we will still retain a key reconnaissance role within that Force. The detail, as ever, is less clear, but sufﬁce to say, with an extraordinary training year ahead, a ﬁnal operational tour to Afghanistan in 2013 and some imaginative and challenging adventurous training in 2014, we will have enough on our plate to keep us busy as a regiment and focussed as individuals, by which time the dust of change should have started to settle. A hugely positive aspect of this year has been the re-building of the Regiments sport teams and the return of genuine sports afternoons. Both the Rugby and the Football teams enjoyed a largely successful season, in part due to the drive and passion of key individuals particularly from the Light Aid Detachment. As ever, our teams of sporting amateurs acquit themselves
impressively against the almost professional squads of other units, and it has been good to see the teams face up to some particularly daunting opponents. Apparently the Golfers have done well too! Combermere Barracks hosted a hugely successful boxing night between HCR and HCMR, with HCR narrowly coming out the victors. All boxers acquitted themselves heroically and should be commended on their individual and collective spirit and determination in the ring. On the snow and ice Regimental teams have had varying degrees of success. The Alpine team had to battle mixed conditions resulting in a disrupted
RAC/AAC Championship. The Nordic Team produced some excellent results, ﬁnishing 2nd best of the RAC teams at the National Championships. The team also secured three individual bronze medals in the Novice category and in his ﬁrst year on the snow, Tpr Massy qualiﬁed for the GB National Development team. A team of six ofﬁcers and soldiers won the Cresta Run Inter Regimentals in St Moritz and individually the team secured 1st and 2nd place in the Army Championships and 1st and 4th places in the Inter Services. Over 50 Household Cavalrymen also took to the water with sailing expeditions in Baltic Sea, the South Coast, the Caribbean and Canary Islands. During these expeditions
25 soldiers gained their competent crew qualiﬁcation. In cricket, both the Household Division and RAC teams saw HCR representation. Sadly typical English weather cut short the annual HCR versus HCMR cricket match on the Eton 1st Eleven Ground. The Regiment also fared well in the Household Division Sports day ﬁnishing a very respectable second. In sum, the Regiment is well placed; it has embarked on a busy and diverse training year, and is looking forward again to the challenges of Afghanistan in 2013.
n the 10th of November 2010, A Sqn was ofﬁcially stood up as part of the UK Small Scale Contingency Battle Group (SSCBG). In order to achieve this, the Sqn had been through a tough and intensive training package right up to the end of the year. After 12 months in role with a major overseas deployment exercise thrown in to test its readiness, A Sqn have now handed this role to D Sqn. The Sqn has also said goodbye to SCM Newton who has moved to the Training Wing and we mark the arrival of WO2 Moses as SCM. Having reported to the 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers for the majority of this year, A Sqn has had some valuable exposure to infantry orientated training as well as being ambassadors for the Regiment’s excellent reputation in Mounted Reconnaissance. Some of the junior soldiers beneﬁted from the Engineer Assault Trooper’s course, while LCoH Cole, LCpl Crudgington, Tprs Goodacre and Pringle ﬂew to Kenya to support a strenuous Infantry training exercise. Meanwhile CoH Cawley and LCpl Groom both fought hard to rank very competitively on Senior & Junior Brecon respectively. Tpr Ridge also stepped up to the challenge of the Light Recce Commander’s Course and Tpr Hayes deployed to the Falkland Islands with the Coldstream Guards; each one demonstrating the dynamic soldering qualities of HCR Troopers within a CVR(T) squadron. In early March the Sqn was given the Order to test its deployment procedures and within 30 days A Sqn minus was crossing the Line of Departure as part of 2RRF Battle Group in a Combined Arms Live Fire exercise on Hohne Range Complex; having shipped men, weapons and 10 CVR(T) across Europe. This was Ex ACTIVE RHINO and for it we welcomed the arrival of Capt Ashby
A joint HCR/2 RRF dismounted Strike Op
and Lt Clive who took the helm of 1 and 2 (Sabre) Troops respectively as well as CoH Preston who took over as SHQ CoH. Support Tp lead by Lt H Boyt and Sgt Snell was re-rolled into 2x Light Role Infantry Sections within the Riﬂe Companies. The training brought with it a few injuries, but Support Tp stood shoulder to shoulder with their 2RRF counter-parts through demanding (8 mile) Company attack lanes. The three weeks spent in Germany also allowed time for outings to Celle, Berlin and Bremen, as well as the opportunity to reﬂect on the memorial left behind at the site of Belsen Concentration Camp. In May the Sqn deployed to Weymouth for a week of Mandatory Annual Training Tests (MATTs), where we took advantage of the good weather to implement some slightly more
challenging Orienteering and teambased command tasks as well as a bit of seaside refreshment. Two new Troop Leaders; 2Lt HJB Jordan and Ct CJB Gore Langton, had ﬂuttered in just in time to use this event as a good introduction to the Sqn. Meanwhile Maj TAH Giffard was enjoying the hospitality of a Canadian Battle Group on a NATO assignment in Arizona. However, WO2 Moses’s attention was dedicated to the planning and execution of this year’s Derby Day at Epsom Races on Saturday the 4th of June. This was a Herculean task running the Army enclosure for three days that at its height would cater for over 1400 guests. We were blessed with Caribbean sunshine and in some form or other the entire Sqn pulled together for various duties including; parking, catering, bar staff, marshals or just drinking. The weekend ended as a huge success and with a very
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 5
Ex ACTIVE RHINO in Germany
sun-burnt Squadron Corporal Major. The Regiment held an Inter Household Cavalry regimental boxing match this year and the Sqn was very proud to be supporting LCpl Clinton (REME) and Tpr Kelly who despite not clinching the win both fought tenaciously for an eventually victorious HCR team. Lt JFM Clive, LCoH Robinson, LCpl McClure and Tpr Caven all represented the Sqn in the Regimental rugby tour to Cyprus and still feature as prominent players in a squad that is starting to make a name for itself in south east England. We also had more soldiers jetting abroad prior to summer leave with Ct CJB Gore Langton and LCoH Murphy getting a sneak preview of the delights of Canada while attached to a Light Dragoons BATUS exercise. LCpl Moore with Tprs Cooke, Broxham, Hirons, Dacey, Frost and Massey all formed an Infantry section that spent a month in the jungles of Belize supporting a Sandhurst exercise. This was followed by four days of ‘playtime’ with American tourists on the paradisiacal white sandy beaches of the neighbouring Cays. Summer leave saw the transition at the helm from Maj TAH Giffard to Maj JEM Howell, who has return to RD after 2 years at Field Training Unit (UK). Straight away the Sqn embarked on a two week Regimental Gun Camp where under CoH Abbott’s guidance Tpr Marsh won best 30mm Gunner for the whole week’s ﬁring, but not until there had been a heated shoot off between himself and Tpr Wood on some very testing long range targetry. CoH Slowey was awarded a place in the RAC Gunnery School and so ﬁnally left the Squadron for Lulworth. We also said goodbye to CoH Cawley and 14 other senior Tprs and LCpls who moved across to bolster a growing B Sqn. This included Tprs Moloney, Luck and
6 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
LCpl Dominey not entirely impressed with the entertainment
Parsons who had worked extremely had to pass the rigorous Sniper Cadre down in Pirbright. SCpl Forsdick also moved on to the Training Wing after being instrumental in the Sqn’s success as it’s Quartermaster through both HERRICK 11 and the Contingency tasking. In October came Ex IRON MAIDEN on Salisbury Plain, where the new Sqn Ldr could really cut his teeth in shaping the tactical employment of A Sqn. After a week of intensive, but very constructive missions we were ably executing Sqn level Obstacle Crossings and Advance to Contact, while the CVR(T) gods blessed us with remarkably few breakdowns. So meticulous was the Rollback (and associated coveralls-drill) that on inspection by RHQ the Sqn was compared to a Germanic Panzer Division.
Adventurous Training has featured as an important thread throughout the year with ten soldiers earning their Competent Crew Sailing qualiﬁcation on a variety of different exercises. 2Lt HJB Jordan andTpr Goodacre have left for the Alps with the Regimental Downhill Ski team and Capt Walker-Okeover (the author) took ten trained or potential snipers (including the SCM) to the Scottish Grampians for a week’s red deer stalking. We now look forward to 2012 and A Sqn’s part in the Regimental mobilisation to Canada next summer. The illustrious Capt GR Ashby has risen to take over the pivotal position of Sqn 2IC and with LCsoH Gibbs, Hill and Miah all successfully qualifying as CVR(T) Crew Commanders this year, and the ORBAT for HERRICK 18 is slowly solidifying.
LCoH Robinson and Tpr Brown getting in the mood on CT1
REME keeping the Squadron moving as always
A Sqn show off their Gunnery skills
011 has been a year of re-laying the foundations and building the Sqn in preparation for our forthcoming tour in Afghanistan in 2013. Quite where the year has gone is difﬁcult to nail down but from the oppressive and sweaty jungles of Belize to the frozen Scottish Highlands and the familiar chill of Salisbury Plain, we have been kept busy amongst some terriﬁc training opportunities. As B Sqn our mandate is to provide the wheeled reconnaissance squadron in the Regiment and provide a nascent Brigade Reconnaissance Force capability. In the absence of vehicles, wheeled or otherwise, our focus turned to dismounted training and close combat. Once more the opportunity to deploy to Belize on the appropriately named Ex Grim Warrior in support of the Infantry Battle School’s Platoon Commanders’ Division. Preparations started in Sennybridge in climatic conditions and accompanying wildlife entirely dissimilar to Belize but did include a series of ranges and basic skills exercises. The ﬁrst deployment to Belize is described elsewhere in this august Journal and so I will not dwell, however, we were fortunate enough to be invited back for PCD’s last exercise in Belize in the summer. Over the course of three separate Grim Warriors a good number of B Sqn and others from across the Regiment have had the opportunity to train in a challenging and unfamiliar environment with some high quality instructors. If the shock to the system was not traumatic enough moving from Wales to Belize the rapid transition from Belize to the Scottish Highlands provided an extreme temperature differential. With the support of a number of Tp Ldrs from A and C Sqns we had been asked to provide the Land Component for a large multinational NATO exercise Joint
St Augustin - Above the jungle canopy
Warrior. Our part of the exercise was centred upon Cape Wrath; for those who have not had the pleasure of visiting sufﬁce to say that its name is well chosen. It is situated at the very north west of the UK mainland and is used as a Naval Gunﬁre, submarine and fast jet range. We were to be working with the United States Marine Corps’ 1st ANGLICO (Air Naval Gunﬁre Liaison Company) who were in the ﬁnal preparatory stages of deployment to Helmand. The exercise was to consist of a week’s live-ﬁring with Close Air Support and Naval Gunﬁre and the second week was a tactical reconnaissance exercise on a huge stretch of private land. As with all memorable exercises it started with a long journey, in this particular case a really long (23 hour) journey interspersed with elements of unscripted drama. SCpl Parker RHG/D was admitted to Stirling Hospital with stomach/bowel complications where he remained for the next week. The coach crashed on a narrow Highland
road and by the time the Sqn Ldr arrived almost the entire Squadron was stranded on the far side of a stormy inlet where they remained for the next four days. Owing to the extreme weather conditions, 70mph winds and seemingly constant rain, helicopters could not ﬂy and the sea state was too rough for small boats. Our live-ﬁring was cancelled. The remainder of the exercise was much more successful and included a long, covert insertion on foot followed by a surveillance phase and ﬁnally a series of targeted strikes against terrorist training camps and command nodes. Much of the surveillance and subsequent strike operations were streamed via live feed to ships, aircraft and participating headquarters across Northern Europe and North America. Next stop was summer leave quickly followed by our annual pilgrimage to Castlemartin, Pembrokeshire. Once more, in the absence of vehicles our main effort lay with Dismounted Close
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 7
Cape Wrath - Compare and contrast
Combat but using our time to really hone the very basics of marksmanship and instinctive shooting. It was the ﬁrst time the Sqn had formed-up after a process of internal recruitment from across the Regiment. Of course, it was not all hard work. Our two weeks were split by a weekend of sports and skits, producing some memorable scenes: Tpr Richardson’s impression of WO2 Marsh LG was uncanny as was the re-enactment of a Sqn O-Group and particularly the reference to planning on the back of Marlboro Lights packet! Following the groundwork of the ranges at Castlemartin, B Sqn concentrated on developing and practicing our Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and preparing our teams for the Cambrian Patrol competition. The ﬁrst phase of this was at Stoneycastle training area, Pirbright, followed by the more unfamiliar and testing Garelochead. Situated to the north of the Firth of Clyde and set against the foreground of Her Majesty’s Naval Base Clyde it is another formidable training area formed of sharp terrain and even sharper winds. Despite the harsh conditions, and maybe because of them Garelochead proved the ideal testing ground for the Cambrian teams allowing them to catch some mileage under their feet and spend some proﬁtable time in, on and sometimes under the perennially wet ground. Straight off the back of Garelochead most of the Sqn deployed to Salisbury Plain for the ﬁrst mounted element to the year’s training whilst the Cambrian teams concentrated on their ﬁtness and ﬁnal preparations. We had just taken temporary ownership of a ﬂeet of eight RWMIKs; essentially opentopped armoured Land Rovers with a heavy machinegun or grenade launcher on top. As luck would have it the Land Warfare Centre’s Lightrole Reconnaissance Commanders’ Course was also on the Plain conducting mobility training and in one of those
8 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
Night Firing at Castlemartin
rarely created ‘perfect storms’ we were able to train jointly under the watchful eye of SCpl Allwood RHG/D, until recently a stalwart of B Sqn. After all of their preparations the Cambrian Patrol teams were in a good a state of preparation as possible. Each team comprised eight members including a commander and a team second-in-command. Lt AR Pickthall captained one team and CoH Allen captained the other. With warnings of dire and unspeakable consequences that would befall the teams in the event of failure they set-off for the familiar and hallowed lands of Sennybridge and the Black Mountains. Bad luck struck CoH Allen’s team and a number of injuries forced their withdrawal. However, Lt Pickthall’s team, ably supported by LCoH Loftus as second-in-command romped home with a great score and a gold medal, one of only a handful awarded this year. Both teams were a huge credit to the Regiment and could not have achieved all they did without numerous key volunteers from C Squadron. As the year draws to a close we can reﬂect upon and be proud of that which we have achieved. More importantly we must look forward to what is to come in the next twelve months as we edge towards Op HERRICK 18. Just as this year has disappeared in a ﬂash the momentum will continue to grow into next and beyond. Sadly we have had to say goodbye to those that have left the Army, been posted or moved squadron. Capt RR Smith moved from the Sqn to greener and more civilian ﬁelds and is now working for a Private Security Company in the Middle East. Capt M Gris-Burke has opted for a more glamorous career ﬁeld as a producer with a Combat Camera Team. WO2 Taylor departed as Squadron Corporal Major and headed down to Lydd to work at the Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing. His replacement is WO2 Marsh, whose arrival has been
boisterous by any imaginings and whose PT sessions threaten not only to take you back to the 1980s but at last recollection the 1780s! SCpl Quickfall has also moved on, after passing the rigorous Royal Military Academy Sandhurst Cadre he is now tormenting young Ofﬁcer Cadets. CoH Grifﬁn is off to try his hand as a helicopter pilot with the Army Air Corps after passing his ﬂying grading and interviews, one of B Sqn’s old-timers he will be sorely missed as will jokes about the colossal size of his cranium. Sgt S Miller REME has also left us and the Army to pursue an interim career as a long-haired traveller he was always so rude about in Belize; we wish him the best of luck. There has been a ﬂood of new-comers into the Sqn including Capt E Richardson as Second-in-Command, Lt HBH Boyt and CsoH Cawley, Allen, Nicol. As my time in command draws to an end I am reminded of what an extraordinary privilege it is to command a squadron and in particular B Sqn. It will be with a heavy heart but with absolute conﬁdence in the Sqn’s abilities that I will handover the reins to Maj TJ Armitage who will lead them up to and through Op HERRICK 18. Tpr Maloney on a Sniper Cadre
LCpl Carrier withdrawing on Range 10
Loftus doles out some more sage advice
Cambrian Patrol Gold Medal Team (from Right Lt AR Pickthall, Maloney, Richardson, Luck, LCpl Carrier, Evans and Mitchell, LCoH Loftus is taking the picture)
011 was an unusual year as it was a period during which ‘C’ Squadron was neither recovering from, nor preparing for an immediately-pending operational tour. This break from the ardours of Mission Speciﬁc Training and operational deployments allowed the squadron to draw-breath and undertake a greater diversity of training than has been possible in recent years. This included overseas Adventure Training and some extremely challenging Training Over Private Land. The year started with EX IRON WYVERN I & 2 in Gloucestershire, Worcestershire and Herefordshire where the crew commanders (and aspiring crew commanders) undertook a series
C Sqn in Mathon, Herefordshire at the start of EX IRON MALVERN patrols exercise
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 9
C Sqn SQMC; SCpl McWhirter shares a joke with WO2 (SCM) Ireland at Castlemartin
were the exemplary ground-briefs provided by LCoH Sabatini and the excellent standard of catering provided by Tpr Fourie and LCpl Foster; whose skill with a ‘boil Posing in the shadow of the Alpspitze; in the bag’ meal C Sqn Adventure Training in Bavaria made the otherwise c o m f o r t a b l e accommodation of Netherley of Tactical Exercises Without Troops Hall, Mathon seem just as bleak (TEWTs) during which a great deal of as a poncho on Sennybridge. imagination was used to work-out how the Brigade Reconnaissance Regiment A week on the Combined Arms of today might lead the remainder of Tactical Trainer (CATT) in Warminster the Brigade across complex terrain followed shortly after the return from and reasonably-wide water obstacles; Herefordshire. For the unaccustomed, bread and butter to the Household CATT is a computer-generated training Cavalrymen of the late twentieth environment which allows whole century, but an unimagined level of regiments to train in vehicle simulators complexity for the majority of those and undertake a series of challenging trained in the shadow of contemporary missions where the possibilities to operations. The highlights of the TEWTs
Lts Sudlow and Boyd-Thomas trial the new BATUS camouﬂage
10 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
experiment with tactics and control artillery ﬁre are endless. This ‘synthetic’ training served as good preparation for an increasingly rare opportunity to train on ‘real’ armoured vehicles, as the Squadron deployed to Salisbury Plain in order to conduct Troop-Level manoeuvres. On the conclusion of this training the Squadron said a sad farewell to WO2 (SCM) Robson who moved into the RQMC post, where he continues to provide preferable service to ‘C’ Sqn at reasonable rates. Shooting of all kinds provided an enduring theme throughout 2011. The Divisional Skill at Arms Meet team, headed-up by Lt Pickthall provided an excellent performance which complimented some extremely demanding live-ﬁre training on EX DRAGONS CLAW in Sennybridge and LFTT at Castlemartin. This progressively demanding shooting programme culminated in a ﬁercely
A ﬂawless example of sartorial elegance; C Sqn on a day-out in London
contested inter-troop marksmanship competition, the winning team of 3 Troop under Lt Boyd-Thomas and CoH Scott walked-away with an impressive collection of well-chosen prizes courtesy of the SQMC; SCpl McWhirter. June saw a return to Herefordshire where the ‘C’ Sqn (with a team from ‘A’ Sqn) undertook a demanding 70 km patrols exercise from Hereford to Malvern taking-in a number of the Sqn ofﬁcer’s homes en-route. EX IRON MALVERN was conducted in the scorching heat of summer; however, all patrols ﬁnished in good-order despite the many blisters. An excellent church service was conducted by the Padre, Maj D Davies in Mathon Church during which the deaf organist and raw enthusiasm of the choir (C Sqn (+)) provided a spectacle unlikely to be repeated in those parts for many years. After a short rehabilitation and rest period, the Squadron undertook a minibus-mounted Navigation Exercise between checkpoints around the Malvern Hills including Netherley Hall, Eastnor Castle and the Bromsberrow Estate (the latter owned by Ex-Life Guard Gilbert Greenall). The hospitality of landowners in Herefordshire ensured that the exercise was a great success which will be remembered by all those who took part for a long time to come. Immediately after return from EX IRON MALVERN the Squadron departed for Bavaria, Adventure Training in the Alps. EX COCKNEY ZUGSPITZE saw 60 Household Cavalry soldiers gain an adventure training qualiﬁcation and enjoy an excellent week (or in some cases two weeks) in the most magniﬁcent surroundings in Europe. The logistical and organisational challenge of organising such demanding (and, sadly, increasingly rare) training was enormous and Lt Boyd-Thomas and SCpl McWhirter are congratulated for continuing to push against doors that would appear to be closed and for refusing to take ‘no’ for an answer. Further Live Firing in Sennybridge followed return to the UK and this, in
turn was followed by some well-earned summer leave. Upon return from leave, the Squadron focused its sight on AFV ranges at Castlemartin. During this period the Squadron welcomed the return of a new Sqn 2IC; Capt B Woolf. His efforts along with CoH Nicol ensured that an extremely efﬁcient and successful ‘Gun Camp’ ensued; the pleasing result of which was a ﬁrst-time pass for all crews on their Annual Crew Test and a ‘Regimental Best Crew’ award going to CoH Jaworski and his charges. Further Troop-level training on CVR(T) followed on Salisbury Plain where the Squadron Leader, Maj D C Sqn learns that Maj D S Brooks will not be Squadron S Brooks had a welcome leading on HERRICK 18 opportunity to put the Sqn through its paces (within The usual churn of manpower means the constraints of Drivers’ Hours). that too many people have arrived in or left the ranks of ‘C’ Sqn during 2011 The highlights of the Sqn social to mention them all here by name. calendar were, ﬁrstly, a night at the Needless to say, the character of the Sqn races where we wished farewell to SCpl remains constant and undiminished. Ireland, Sgt Hunt and CoH Bonham. We look forward to seeing old friends This was an evening where fortunes and colleagues in the future and wish were made and lost… but mostly lost. all those who have set a course for new Secondly, a Sqn day-out in London to horizons the very best for the future. conduct Lt Wilmot’s EX MONOPOLY CHALLENGE which created a great deal of fun and resulted C Sqn about to embark on EX MONOPOLY CHALLENGE in surprisingly few arrests. With just enough time left to win the Commanding Ofﬁcer’s interS q u a d r o n R e g i m e n t a l Cross-Country competition, the Sqn welcomed Christmas leave and looked forward to 2012 and BATUS. C Sqn in Hyde Park for Cavalry Sunday
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 11
he ﬂat open deserts and the fertile green zone of central Helmand seem a distant memory now. This time last year, the Squadron was coming to the end of its ﬁrst month in Afghanistan on HERRICK 13 with 16 Air Assault Brigade. After successfully completing a six month tour, the Squadron returned in May to face a new challenge: that of providing the armoured reconnaissance capability to 3 Para Battle Group as it takes up the mantle of forming the Airborne Task Force (ABTF). HERRICK 13 was D Squadron’s third tour of Afghanistan, its ﬁrst being in 2006. Much has changed in that time and many who served with the Squadron on HERRICK 4, or any of the subsequent tours, can not deny that the Helmand they experienced before was very different to the one they faced on HERRICK 13, as was the role the Squadron was tasked with. Gone were the days when the Squadron found itself operating over vast distances, for different battle groups throughout Helmand - from Gamsir to Musa Qulah. The Squadron was given its own area for which it was responsible. We were effectively ‘ground holding’ in an Area of Ops (AO) over 250sq kms. Our mission was to ensure freedom of movement and security along Highway 1, reporting on a daily basis to the Danish Battle Group who were responsible for the Nar-e-Saraj North (NES(N)) AO. The highway is the main arterial route that runs around the whole of Afghanistan. It is an important strategic route on which vast swathes of the population rely. Convoys, often ﬁfty or more vehicles long, were commonplace, transporting goods that service LCoH Graham-Green with his opposite number ‘WAHAB’ in the 2KDK HQ.
12 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
the main cities and towns around the country. It is the lifeline of Afghanistan and is important not only to the local population, the military and other government departments, but also the Taliban. Disruption, in whatever manner, be it by IEDs or ambushes, was a sign of insecurity; a sign that neither the Afghan Security Forces nor ISAF could provide the security it promised. In carrying out this mission we were also tasked with partnering the 2 Kandak, Afghan National Army (ANA), ably supported by a team of Kandak Advisors from No 1 Coy 1st Bn Irish Guards. The 2 Kandak AO matched our own and their lay-down saw four Tolays (the Afghan equivalent of a British Infantry Company) occupy 18 static checkpoints along the length of the highway. The quality of soldiers within each checkpoint varied dramatically depending on the calibre of the Tolay Commander or Checkpoint commander.
Our role was simple: through effective partnering we would develop the Kandak’s capability, thereby improving their ability to provide security and freedom of movement along the Highway. In practice this was no mean feat. The Afghan way of providing security was very static. They were reluctant to patrol in depth off the Highway and happy to remain in their checkpoints with little interaction with the local population. To us it was clear that the best approach was entirely the opposite. Thus our daily battle with the Kandak Commander and his subordinates was to encourage them to get off the road to patrol in depth and to engage with the local population. Over time and with much hard work from all in the Squadron this pattern of patrolling became the norm, although we were never complacent and realised that without constant pressure they would simply revert to their old ways. Over the course of the tour we conducted
Another day draws to a close in Afghanistan.
SCpl Woollaston on patrol
deliberate and framework operations, both mounted and dismounted, with varying degrees of success. The terrain in which we operated varied dramatically between sparsely populated desert areas to more densely populated green zone. Owing to the size of our AO and the distances we covered, our vehicles, a mixture of CVR(T) and Jackal, were crucial in getting us out to the various villages we needed to patrol. However, once there it was dismounted patrolling that enabled us and the ANA to really get amongst the people. We worked hard throughout the tour to build up as detailed an understanding of the local environment as possible. Through this sustained endeavour the Squadron were able to build a deeper understanding of the area astride the Highway than anyone before. Every member of the Squadron should be proud of the way in which they performed, as all worked extremely hard in a highly professional manner throughout. In an article like this it is normal to mention a number of individuals who have stood out as having been key members of the Squadron but for a Squadron to be successful everyone must play his part, and that they did. There are two individuals, however, deserving of special mention who received honours for their bravery
over the course of the tour; CoH (now SCpl) Woollaston and LCoH Minter. Cpl Maj Woollaston was commended for distinguished service and LCoH Minter was mentioned in Dispatches. Both fully deserved this recognition and are a credit to the Squadron.
just over the horizon, the new growth business is Contingency. 16 AA Bde and the ABTF are in the van, and as a Squadron we are proud to be part of the Brigade and ABTF and we look forward to the new challenges as well as the opportunities that this role will bring.
Since the Squadron’s return from Finally, we must say goodbye to those Helmand in May our focus has been on who have left the Squadron since preparing for Contingency Operations returning from Afghanistan. Some have in our new role with the Airborne Task been promoted out of the Squadron, Force (ABTF). We have been through others posted. They are too many to a full collective training period with mention, but all have been integral to a ﬁring camp at Castlemartin, Ex Joint the Squadron’s spirit and cohesion, Warrior up in the Galloway Forest, and we wish them well for the future. Scotland and a TALO exercise on Keevil Airﬁeld. This new role requires a complete change in mind set and a return to the uncertainties of 3 Para and D Sqn on a very wet Exercise Joint Warrior being at reduced notice to move, ready to deploy anywhere in the world. Whether there is both the political will, or the ﬁnancial resources to deploy the ABTF in the near future is a topic of debate. However, we live in uncertain times - one just has to look at recent events across North Africa and the Middle East - and the need for us to be prepared and ready to deploy at a moment’s notice is as relevant today as it ever has been. With the drawdown in Afghanistan
by Major JP Core LG
efore beginning to write this article, I looked back through the diary to familiarise myself with what the Sqn had been involved in prior to my arrival. Although this was to have been a steady period, I had to smile because for a steady period the Sqn seemed to have completed an awful lot. The year started with Ex IRON HEEL, a dismounted training exercise on Bramley Training Area. The Sqn was split into platoons to complete a 36 hour exercise to test them
on section battle drills while operating from a Forward Operating Base (FOB). They had to complete a round robin of stands which tested them on navigation, ﬁrst aid and CBRN. The ﬁnal part of the exercise saw the platoons carrying out a search and rescue operation on a downed Sea King Helicopter. March saw the squadron deployed to Salisbury Plain Training Area and, due to turnover of personnel throughout last
year, we decided to go back to basics. The training started with lectures and brieﬁngs on occupation of hides, convoy drills, breakdown recovery, obstacle crossings, replens, ambush and anti ambush drills. On completion of the briefings, a selection of different scenarios were carried out in order to fully test on what had been taught. Throughout this training period though, we still had to continue with our main task of supporting the sabre sqns, which allowed them
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 13
the Major General then said “and they cook as well” so we now have our own Casey Rybacks. (Ed. Note: Reference to a Steven Seagal character from the ‘Under Siege’ moving picture).
LSgt Gurung and LCpl Lamatari waiting to receive their Long Service and Good Conduct Medals
to complete CT1 also. The Sqn went to Castlemartin to enable it to catch up with the compulsory MATT brieﬁngs, ACMT and IBSR. The range safety staff on the IBSR complimented LSgt Gurung and LCpl Lamatari, 2 of the RLC chefs, on how they had completed the ISBR in an aggressive, robust and professional manner. On receipt of their Long Service and Good Conduct Medal from the Major General it came to light that both individuals had enlisted into the Royal Gurkha Riﬂes in January 1995. The citations that were read out covered their operational tours, several overseas exercises in Hong Kong, Brunei, Falkland Islands Kosovo, Kenya and Afghanistan and a plethora of infantry instructor courses. In 2008/09 they were given the opportunity to transfer within the Army and both selected to re-trade as RLC chefs and are now excelling in their new trade. After the reading of the citations,
Throughout the year the Sqn tried to ensure that all individuals caught up on required trade and career courses, and the majority have now completed the BCiP 5.4 uplift course, (for those still unaware, it’s something to do with radios). We were also able to get LCoH Nardini and LCpl Catton on the Ground Sign Awareness and Military Tracking Instructors Course in Brunei. The course which is a month long, taught them how to identify the natural environment and the changes that are inﬂicted on it by the passage of man or animal. The course culminated in a three day exercise where they carried out a helicopter insertion into the jungle and had to ﬁnd, track and report on the enemy troop’s strengths and equipment in the area. This year’s commitments at Castlemartin Ranges meant we had to cancel the planned adventure training at Capel Curig, as it was too difﬁcult to get away. However, we were able to get WO2 (RSWO) Santi, LCpl Archer, Tprs Sinclair, Silk, Williams and Pritchard on a one week sailing trip on the Household Division yacht Gladeye. The trip started off with a drive to Gosport where Gladeye is moored and where they met CoH ‘Jase’ Hadley who is the yacht’s skipper. The time was spent sailing in the Solent, visiting Lymington and the Isle of Wight and by the end of the week everyone had learned a lot, had fun and gained a start yachting qualiﬁcation certiﬁcate. The Remembrance Day Parade this year was blessed with stunning sunshine and for the ﬁrst time in many years, all ﬁve
WO2 (RSWO) Santi, CoH Hadley, Tpr’s Pritchard, Silk and Williams sailing on the Solent
14 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
sqns were on parade. We had the usual losing the step in camp, but once we were on the main road the sight of all the Regiment marching to church was impressive to say the least. Padre Dai Davies gave an excellent sermon and it was very poignant when the RCM read out the names of our comrades who have made the ultimate sacriﬁce, losing their lives since 2003. The past 12 months have seen the squadron say goodbye to a number of people and welcome many others. They are too many to mention all by name, however, it would be remiss of us as a Sqn not to say goodbye to Maj R J Carney MBE RHG/D. Maj Carney handed over in June to take up his post as the Chief Instructor at the Army School of Recruiting at Bovington. He left the Sqn in excellent shape and we all wish him well in the future. We must also say farewell to WO2 Bert Jukes, SCpls Gunner Mardon and Grandad Walker who have all completed 22 years’ service. On behalf of the squadron, I would like to thank them for all their hard work and loyal service and wish them good luck with their future careers.
LCpl Catton on course in Brunei
HQ Squadron Remembrance Day Parade Rehearsal
Step up moving into position in Salisbury Plain
ommand Troop had a busy year Supporting Regimental and Bde commitments culminating in the completion of the BCIP 5.4 Uplift training. We said farewell to WO2 P Stainsby who has moved on to become RQ Tech. Our initial shake out on Salisbury Plain with HQ and C Sqn for CT training in March proved useful for bringing together a new troop under Capt S P Deverell (RSO) and WO2 M A Santi (RSWO). The biggest challenge was setting up with only four Vehicles and preventing LCoH Wilkinson from using Captain Jack Sparrow’s compass. Six members of the troop took part in an introduction to Sailing from Gosport aboard the Household Division Yacht Gladeye. We sailed around the south coast and even stopped off in the Isle of Wight. Tpr Sinclair received more attention than he felt comfortable with after Tpr Williams identiﬁed he had plugged the electric kettle in whilst at sea, this was made worse by the fact that he reached over the gas kettle to plug it in! We all enjoyed the experience and it was good to catch up with LCoH J Hadley the current Bosun on Gladeye.
having caught the sailing bug, took part in the Household Division regatta in May. The team had a swift orientation from the 2IC, Maj Bedford, before he made a swift exit leaving the three man team to achieve fourth place. Capt Deverell moved on to HCMR in July making way for Capt S Taylor to assume command as RSO. After a good spell of leave the troop returned to Castlemartin ranges in support of the Regimental ﬁring camp where our hospitality skills were put to the test in all weathers. From West Wales back to Salisbury for some more training and
LCpl Archer proving communications at sea
although we had said farewell to LCoH Wilkinson it appears he had left Jack Sparrow’s compass with LCoH Doyle for a bit of sight seeing in west Wiltshire. LCoH J Hawley was posted back from HCMR so if anyone sees him can they let the RSWO know ASP. We said farewell to CoH Goodwin to C Sqn RY in Croydon and welcomed SCpl P Carrington who very swiftly got to grips with the BSM’s role and his successful communications plan ensured a smooth uplift for the Regiment.
Tpr Sinclair not watching the kettle or it will never boil!
C Sqn conducted Ex Iron Malvern which included a long range insertion. Command troop provided long range HF communications to support the ﬁrst phase talking up to 72 km at one point. We took the opportunity to practice our JNCOs in VHF rebroadcast for phase two. LCoH Minto, LCoH Knight and LCpl Archer successfully provided the squadron with a VHF footprint of over 30km; this increased the communications range of each patrol from an expected range of 5km. WO2 Santi, LCpl Archer and Tpr Silk,
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 15
Training Wing by Captain AJ Galvin LG
ime ﬂies … My last remark in the previous Journal was that it would be a hectic year and I was not wrong. Not only has all the Training Wing staff turned over less myself and SSgt Gibson, the APTCI, but the commitments and collective training needed for the Regiment grew to an unrecognisable size as the year progressed. 2011 began at an agreeable pace with low level, internal individual courses. The Gunnery Wing was quietly ticking over with the usual basic ‘B3’ 30mm courses being ran, but also training JNCOs’ and Tprs on JAVELIN as our own anti-tank capability. Along with the new liaison vehicle, PANTHER, comes the requirement for the commanders to use a remote weapon station (RWS) know as ENFORCER. So February saw a large group of instructors and students travel down to that holy place, the school of excellence that is the Gunnery School at Lulworth to conduct their live ﬁring and qualify as gunners and operators. These days, just holding a car licence does not entitle you to drive a Land Rover. So the small burden of converting the young Troopers to be able drive safely on the larger vehicle and to be able to negotiate cross-country terrain lies with the instructors within the regiment. The running of these conversion courses has been a constant presence throughout the year. At the same time, SCpl Hoggarth ran two potential NCO (PNCO) courses. Unfortunately, these PNCO courses are not as long as the old and bold remember, but they are full on, intense and well prepared and they serve the Sqns well in identifying any up and coming ﬂyers. March saw the ﬁrst of our collective B Sqn - .50 cal by night
16 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
training exercises on Salisbury Plain with HQ Sqn, C Sqn and RHQ deploying for two weeks. The weather was kind and with the theme to the Sqns of ‘back to basics’, all the good low level skills were covered as a building block for things to come. The weeks leading up to the summer break were spent preparing for Annual ﬁring, which was our main focus for September. The build up to the ﬁring package was exceptionally busy, encompassing almost every regimental instructor available as, unlike last year, we were ﬁring our heavy weapons in the dismounted role as well as the usual CVR(T) and dismounted small arms packages. It was at this time that SCpl Woollaston arrived straight from HERRICK 13 with D Sqn to take over from SCpl Hoggarth who was preparing to resettle and leave the regiment after 22 years service. We also had a change in the clerical department which saw LCpl Kwakye join the team from B Sqn. After a well deserved summer break, we deployed to Castlemartin Ranges in South Wales for the Regimental Gun Camp. It was a real ‘old school’ affair with all Sqns taking part for the three week intense ﬁring package. As well as the Scimitar and variant ﬁring, B Sqn rolled out the Heavy Machine Guns (.50 cal HMG) and the Grenade Machine Guns (40mm GMG). This coupled with dismounted ﬁeld ﬁring on the small arms ranges, led to a hugely successful and rewarding Annual Firing which will be remember for its many visits from some high proﬁle Staff Ofﬁcers. Sadly, after gun camp, we had to say goodbye to CoH Phelan, who has been medically discharged due to injuries sustained on HERRICK 11. We wish him well on his road to recovery. The second of our exercises on Salisbury Plain came
in October. This time it was a larger deployment, with elements of B Sqn on the wheeled platform RWMIK and the other Sabre Sqns on CVR(T). This was SCpl Woollastons’ ﬁrst exposure to life on exercise with the Training Wing and I think, besides having to make me a brew every two minutes, he found the tempo quite agreeable. The whole of November saw the Regiment get an ‘uplift’ in the BOWMAN system. This meant that all the facilities in the Training Wing were in use by a bunch of external signals geeks training different levels and capabilities to most of the Regiment which, as an ex Gunnery School Instructor, nearly made my eyes bleed. However, it was for the greater good, so we all had to grin and bare it. This month also saw WO2 Newton, the Training Wing Warrant Ofﬁcer leave us on promotion to become the Garrison Corporal Major of Catterick. This move was obviously well deserved and paved the way for SCpl Forsdick to move from A Sqn on promotion to take his place. I cannot ﬁnish this article without mentioning our very own LCoH Fletcher. He has been busy working behind the scenes ensuring that the Regiment has all the correct driving qualiﬁcations and licences to be able to function in all its many roles. From Cat C to Quad bike, he is responsible for qualifying the correct people in many different guises and for this, he deserves credit. For a relatively small department such as this, this year has been extremely busy. From basic gunnery and JAVELIN to HMG and SA80, all have been taught, ﬁred and competently used this year, all controlled and co-ordinated by the Training Wing. It has quite literally ﬂown by this year, and long may it continue.
RCM, Range staff, Commanding Ofﬁcer (eyes narrowed) and Training Ofﬁcer in the tower Range 4, Castlemartin
Regimental Administration Ofﬁce viable instructional asset to the Det and the Regiment. LSgt Pike returned with D Sqn after a successful tour of Op HERRICK with 16 AA Bde.
Pte Lajuwomi, LSgt Ashton, Pte Sookaul and Sgt LaTouche at the HCR Equality and Diversity Curry Lunch
he HCR Staff and Personnel Support Detachment has had a busy and interesting year. There has been a signiﬁcant change in top level management personalities; the Regimental Administration Ofﬁcer (RAO), Detachment Commander and RAOWO all being replaced within four months of each other. HCR was in no way prepared for the explosion of pink that was the arrival of WO2 (SQMS) Johnson or the ex-Riﬂes WO2 who arrived as the Det Comd having taught most of the Regiment on OPTAG over previous years. We began the year fully manned and then ended the year in a woeful state of gapping, having lost Sgt Lloyd to maternity leave (congratulations on the birth of
Eli), LSgt LaTouche on promotion, LSgt Ashton on assignment and LSgt Clerice on an operational trawl to Kabul. As a result of these successes, Pte Lajuwomi is currently running B Sqn solo (no mean feat for a Pte Soldier). We’ve also had two promotions this year; congratulations to LCpls Afoh and Kwakye. Congratulations also to Pte Sookaul on her recent marriage to Vicky in August of this year. Whilst the Det as a whole have battled to get away, individuals have certainly managed to ﬁll their year with various activities; Sgt Cornforth spent the ﬁrst half of the year in preparation for and on the RMA Sandhurst Cadre, gaining qualiﬁcations which make her both a
We have had various sporting achievements and representation at Regimental, Corps and Army level including: Capt Johnston (Polo), Sgt Cornforth (Rugby and Football), LSgt Regis (Cricket and Football), Pte Sookaul (Badminton), Pte Mumuni (Cross-country). SSgt Brittain and LSgt Ashton went with C Sqn on Ex Cockney Zugspitze, an adventurous walking exercise in Bavaria. Capt Brooks, WO2 Johnson, Pte Collins and Pte Sookaul have all supported the Diversity Action Recruitment Team (DART) on several occasions including the national Navratri Hindu festival which was the largest event of its kind in Europe. WO2 Johnson and Sgt Speirs volunteered for the onerous task of conducting a reconnaissance visit to the brewery for a new beer for the WO’s and NCO’s Mess. When Capt Brooks was heard to question the adage ‘Time spent on reconnaissance is seldom wasted ’ he was told: “Don’t worry, Sir, this new beer we’ve got in the Mess – it’s like a truth serum!” – make of that what you will! In an already well qualiﬁed Detachment the drive for personal development has continued, with LSgt Nkhata enrolling on a CIMA course through MAS(A) and LCpl Kwakye enrolling in a Masters Degree in Business (MABS) through Southampton Solent University, taking full advantage of the SPS whole life development plan. In summary, a busy, demanding year for a Detachment with many stars on the rise.
by Capt Jonny Pass
his year the most signiﬁcant changes within the Quartermaster’s Department have been the turnover of personnel, starting in December 2010 with the change over of the regimental tailor with a move for CoH “Doc” Holliday back to HCMR in exchange of LCpl “Skip” Scheepers on promotion. Early January brought about the departure of Capt Carter with a swift handover to Capt Pass. “Happy February” saw a rapid departure for LCpl Clarke who was replaced as Ammo Storeman by LCpl Rose, this was then quickly followed by the move of the WO2 (RQMC) “Wally the Bear”
Brown, who moved to HCMR to assume the post of Regimental Corporal Major and WO2 Robson picked up the mantle of RQMC. March brought about the move of SCpl Swinburne who took over as Ofﬁcers Mess Manager and SCpl Goater took the reins as the Regiments Health and Safety Advisor. The ﬁnal move of the year saw LCoH Haith who after completing over three years within the Quartermaster’s Department sadly left for civilian life. The department and regiment are grateful for all the work he has done and wish him and his family all the best for their transition to civilian life. The remainder of the troop have
QM’s Dept staff day out at Thorpe Park
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 17
kept continuity within the department. Estate developments have been slow due to the economic conditions. However accommodation blocks 1 & 2 have now been demolished, although we have to wait for further funding to get rid of the rubble before we get our new parade square! New equipment continues to be rolled out and as I write
this we are now issuing the new General Service Respirator (GSR) to replace the old S10. Deliveries of the new combats Personnel Combat System, Combat Uniform (PCSCU) have started and hopefully in the New Year the regiment can convert.
and PRiDE), external contractors, DIO staff and both Brigades G4 staff for all their help and assistance over the year, thus ensuring Combermere is safe, smart and continues to be ﬁt for purpose as the home of the Household Cavalry Regiment.
Finally, I would like to thank all the civilian staff, our site contractors (Sodexo
Quartermaster Technical Department by Capt QM(T) P J McKechnie RHG/D
his year has been more of a challenge than expected! Considering 2011 was planned to be the quiet time before preparation for OP HERRICK 18 the ﬂow of work in and out of the department set a different scene. March saw the Regt deployed on SPTA and this gave us the chance to deploy into the ﬁeld in support of training. As part of CT1 training the emphasis was placed upon basic skills such as map reading. This was an initial concern to me when I arrived on the area to ﬁnd out from the Sqn Ldr that LCoH Wharton had found parts of the area that did not exist although he assured me it was not his map reading. I was again concerned when I met up with the department at Victor crossing and after the route brieﬁng was led in the wrong direction by CoH Ramsden although
he assured me he was “picking his ground”. The two weeks passed well and the standard of map reading and personal skills developed signiﬁcantly. After summer leave we deployed to Castlemartin ranges in support of Regtl Firing. Although not a new task we did have close liaison with 1 Mech Bde and were supported by a Logistic Support Detachment from 3 LSR a couple of suppliers. This allowed us to test resupply which will be crucial as HCR approach Pre Deployment Trg. In October we supported another visit to SPTA to support individual Sqn training. The year was ﬁlled with an Equipment Table rewrite controlled initially by SCpl Walker and inherited by LCoH Evans and the subsequent task of reducing or
increasing stock to reﬂect our new scales. Under whole ﬂeet management we have been challenged continuously! We have received an array of vehicles including quad bikes with trailers, RWMIK, BGTi Scimitar and MAN SV trucks as well as ﬂuctuating veh holdings for exercise from CT1 Fleet at DSG in Bovington. At the end of 2010 the department said goodbye to WO2 RQMC(T) Allon Anderton on posting as RQMC(T) BATUS, in February 2011 Maj Tadge Tait LG moved to become HQ Sqn Ldr at HCMR and in August SCpl Nige (Grandad) Walker completed 22 years service. The department welcomed WO2 Paul Stainsby from RSWO as RQMC(T), Captain Paul McKechnie RHG/D as QM(T) from SO3 BOWTAG(S) and SCpl Neil Hall from AFCO Norwich.
Light Aid Detachment
CR LAD has undergone signiﬁcant change over this past year and is continuing to evolve as we look forward to the BATUS Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER season in 2012 and beyond. Aside from the many new faces including a change of OC in June, the LAD has succumbed to Project KITCHENER which has seen an entire ﬁtter section removed from many LADs, including this one. The result is a new concept of a shared ﬁtter section between A and C Sabre Sqns and is known as Sabre Sqn Fitter Section; dividing their manpower for one ﬁtter section to fulﬁll the role of two. This enables continued integration and inclusion with the Sabre Sqns; an essential quality of a Light Aid Detachment providing concurrent training and cohesion. In March 2011 A Sqn deployed to Germany for a ﬁring camp and C Sqn deployed on CT1 on Salisbury Plain Training Area (SPTA). The ﬁtter sections divided up to support both these exercises. Once these exercises were complete A Sqn ﬁtter section and C Sqn ﬁtter section amalgamated to
18 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
form a Sabre Sqn Fitter Section. This happened to ensure maximum resources to support both Sqns and it soon became apparent that this had been the right decision. Both Sqns had low level exercises between April and September, which the section was able to support fully, rotating manpower and crews.
LCpl Baleiwai during Ex GRIM WARRIOR
During October, A Sqn deployed on SPTA for a week-long CT1 exercise. Elements of HQ Sqn Fitter Section deployed to Westdown camp with the remainder of the section. Their role was to undertake any repairs that would take the Fitter Section longer than four hours to complete on the ground. This enabled the section to fulﬁll training objectives
along with the Sqn and complete any low level work on the ground. At the end of the week we waved goodbye to A Sqn, with a tear in our eye and said hello to C Sqn. They took over all the vehicles and we went out the gate again and completed another week of CT1. Once again, a busy year for A Sqn and C Sqn with the Fitter Section ﬁghting ﬁt
D Sqn Fitter Section at Kandak
and in full support. A baptism of ﬁre for some of the ﬁtters, but the experience gained has been very valuable. Since returning from Op HERRICK 11, the B Sqn Fitter Section have integrated fully into the Sqn and being dismounted we thought we would be in for an easy ride with no vehicles to maintain; how wrong we were! The Fitter Section deployed to Belize and took part in Ex GRIM WARRIOR. This was an arduous jungle Exercise lasting for four weeks where the Sqn deployed three recce sections; Sgt Miller was 1 Section Commander and LCpl Baleiwai was integrated into 1 Section as a trooper. Owing to the REME soldiers’ integration with the Sqn, no capability was lost having a REME tradesman as a section commander. On completion of the exercise, the Sqn indulged in some much deserved R & R in San Pedro and St Georges Caye. Sgt Miller tried his hand at SCUBA diving and ﬁshing and LCpl Baleiwai went kayaking, wind surﬁng and sailing with both individuals thoroughly enjoying themselves. On return from summer leave, the Sqn received their uplift of Quad Bikes and the pace of the Sqn training picked up. There was a deployment on the Regimental Firing Camp in Castlemartin, sharpening their basic infantry skills and an exercise in Garelochead where the Squadron carried out Ex CAMBRIAN PATROL training with Cfn Nation deployed to assist. Upon return from bonnie Scotland, the Sqn received eight RWMIKs and inherited more B vehicles
from HQ Sqn (just in time for the CT1 deployment to SPTA). Finally the Fitter Section could indulge in some good quality “spannering” time before a much deserved Christmas Leave. D Sqn deployed in Oct 10 on Op HERRICK 13 with 16 Air Assault Bde, assuming the task of providing freedom of movement and security of Highway 1 from E coy, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance USMC. The ﬁtter section provided Equipment Support (ES) for the Sqn’s myriad of vehicles which included CVR(T), JACKAL, RIDGEBACK, MAN SV’s and HUSKY. ES assets were split between the comfort of MOB PRICE and the basic facilities of 6th Kandak in Gereshk as well as working out on the ground to maintain the combat effectiveness of the Sqn. After some well earned POTL the ﬁtter section was straight back into a busy training period with D Sqn to become part of the Airborne Task Force (ABTF). After taking over a ﬂeet of 13 CVR(T) the ﬁtter section was able to assist and take part in the squadron’s two week range package at Castlemartin which involved mounted and dismounted live ﬁring. We also
supplied ES assets to the Sqn during Ex JOINT WARRIOR, 2 TALO exercises and provided personnel for Ex FIRST FLIGHT. This all had to be achieved under the clouds of Project KITCHENER and a constantly dwindling manpower with many of the original section that deployed on Op HERRICK 13 having been posted. To keep up with everchanging requirements of the ABTF, members of ﬁtter section have also qualiﬁed as Rigger Marshallers, Landing Point Commanders, RWMIK plus drivers and commanders. A frenzied but potentially exciting period for D Sqn Fitter section awaits us in 2012. The past year has seen a complete shake around with new faces arriving into the Fitter Section; the head of the ﬁtters SSgt Horne having been posted to the Unit in April. With HCR having a gap year
LCpl St Hilaire and Cfn Hulme discussing another mechanical puzzle on Op HERRICK 13
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 19
LSgts Spufford and Lyall, LCpl Doyle, Capt Anthistle, Sgt Moseley, Cfn Greenwood, LSgts Betts and Beetson proving the Adventurous Training isn’t just a myth
from ops it has been the ideal time for section members to carry out a variety of courses both trade and career, ranging from SV and PANTHER equipment courses to PNCO and CLM courses. The ﬁtter section has been deployed on a number of short exercises always working incredibly hard to maintain equipment availability in a key enabling sub unit. From Castlemartin ranges for gun camp through to Westdown Camp for CT1 training working along side the Sabre Sqn. The ethos of ‘Work Hard, Play Hard’ has been in full operation with various trips and events. The section has had opportunities to travel to Austria for Ex SUPREME GLACIER (a skiing expedition), visits to Windsor Castle, Royal Hospital Chelsea and HCMR Barracks and museum.
Warrant Ofﬁcers’ and Non Commissioned Ofﬁcers’ Mess
or the ﬁnal part of the 2010 Mess calendar the Warrant Ofﬁcers’ and Non-Commissioned Ofﬁcers’ Mess had the pleasure of dining out Lt Col H R D Fullerton OBE. The function consisted of a formal regimental lunch which provided Lt Col Fullerton the opportunity to thank the mess for their support and to congratulate them on all that had been achieved during his tenure. This occasion was rounded off by the arrival of a Ferret Scout Car that took the Commanding Ofﬁcer home. This allowed Lt Col Fullerton to reminisce his Troop Leader days in Cyprus as part of the UN Ferret Scout Car Squadron. The 2010 Brickhanging was, as always, a memorable and successful event. For the ﬁrst time since the integration of the Life Guards and the Blues and Royals all serving Household Cavalry Mess members took part in the Brickhanging ceremony. The aim of this was not to dilute or force tradition upon any of the Mess members but, to provide an opportunity for both Regiments to stand shoulder to shoulder as we do on operations. Brickhanging is arguably the most enjoyed and greatly attended Mess function of each year from serving and ex serving afﬁliates.
been a formal Regimental dinner night and this year was no exception. The evening provided the platform for the new Commanding Ofﬁcer to deliver his key message for the forthcoming year and further enabled him to catch up with familiar faces, both new and not so.
The start of 2011 was celebrated in the guise of a curry fuelled ﬁrework fest New Years Eve party. All attendees performed their most elaborate dance moves into the early hours. In retrospect the Mess could have ﬁelded a few contenders for “Got to Dance”. Lt Col J P Eyre, assumed command of the Regiment in January of 2011 and the Mess wasted no time in inviting the new Commanding Ofﬁcer to address the Mess with the State of the Nation speech. This function has traditionally
Within the ﬁrst half of 2011 the WOs’ and NCOs’ Mess has been used to great effect for a variety of different activities. The ﬁrst of which was a joint luncheon between the Warrant Ofﬁcers from HCR and those serving at HCMR. This occasion provided the opportunity for the senior elements of both Messes to get together and talk through the different challenges that both Regiments face. In addition, it was a chance to strengthen the bond between the two messes and was such a success it will now become
The Mess at dinner for the Summer Ball
an annual event. Due to operational commitments, the Household Cavalry has not held a Regimental boxing event since 2005. With D Sqns return from OP HERRICK 13 and all the Regiment in barracks, this provided the ideal opportunity for the greatest participation and the occasion was set. Both the operational and the mounted regiment trained hard and submitted a team of ten boxers each. The HCR team was ably coached by WO2 (MTWO) Adams RHG/D and Sgt Moseley REME. The evening was a fantastic success and the operational Regiment won the event by a very close margin. All were invited across to the Mess to celebrate the winning team’s victory. That same week saw D Sqn presented their Op HERRICK 13 medals
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 21
by the Princess Royal. This was a great honour for all the serving soldiers and their families. It has always been very worthwhile to hold some charity functions in the Mess and during April this year an opportunity was seized. Mrs Rachel Newton (the wife of WO1 (GCM) Newton LG) organised a charity dinner night in aid of the Butterﬂy Thyroid Cancer Trust. Over £7500 pounds was raised on the night through donations and an auction, made possible by many generous items being donated from local businesses. The evening was planned and executed with military precision. In fact, Mrs Newton would make a very worthy PMC and should be congratulated for her efforts. As we came to the end of May the bittersweet task of dining out more of our senior members running out after 22 year dining-outs was upon us, and the Mess marked the distinguished service of: WO2 Stuart Matthews LG WO2 John Irwin LG WO2 Geoff Tennant LG SCpl Ian Fearnley LG Some of the above had ﬁnished their service at ERE and had not been into the Mess for some time. Old stories were told and friendships rekindled, regrettably the night was over too quickly even though the disco stretched into the early hours. As we encroached into Summer a prominent date in the Mess diary was one that is always eagerly anticipated by many members of the Household Division notably; “Derby Day”. The Household Division enclosure was again ﬁlled to capacity with some 1500 guests. Glorious sunshine engulfed Epsom Downs
and luck was in the air. The food was outstanding and much Champagne and Pimms were consumed. All in all, the day was enjoyed by all participants and next year’s Derby is already in the forecast of events. The Mess members enjoyed an exMess members at Savill Park Gardens for the Summer Ball cellent Mess Summer Ball in July, was recognised for commendable and involving the heady combination of a gallant service on OP HERRICK 13. live band, well stocked bar, burlesque He received a very well deserved Joint dancers, polished off with a champagne Commander’s Commendation. breakfast made for an extremely memorable night. We will end 2011 with a busy Christmas period in the Mess, with the Another major function in the social diRegimental Carol Concert, the Wives ary was a Life Guards Past and Present and Girlfriends Christmas party, and Warrant Ofﬁcers’ Dinner Night, on of course the centrepiece of the festive 22nd Oct, headed up by Maj John Lodge season, Brickhanging with all ﬁve LG which saw a total of 50 serving Squadrons attending. To have the and retired LG Warrant Ofﬁcers swapwhole Regiment home from operations ping tales and having a good old chin is indeed a rare occurrence and we will wag – a resounding success! The Mess be sure to maximise the celebrations. also presented an excellent turnout to The Life Guards Association dinner The senior Mess Members are: which was a fantastic occasion. It is a valuable opportunity for the youngest WO1 (RCM) DJ Hitchings troopers in the Regiment to meet exWO1 (ASM) GWB Leader regimental personnel who may have WO2 (RQMC) D Robson served in the Second World War; a very WO2 (RQMC(T)) P Stainsby good education for them. The busy visit WO2 (AQMS) M Carrahar programme has also seen the Mess welWO2 (RAWO) L Johnson come guests in ﬁne style, and when the WO2 (SCM) J Moses Major General arrived he presented a WO2 (TWWO) J Forsdick number of awards, including the Long WO2 (SCM) I Marsh Service and Good Conduct Medal to WO2 (SCM) P Ireland SCpl (SQMC) Parker RHG/D and LSgt WO2 (SCM) M Flynn CGC MC Gurung and LCpl Lamtari, both RLC. WO2 (SCM) C Hockings The most prestigious award presented WO2 (RSWO) M Santi by the Major General during this visit WO2 (MTWO) P Adams was to SCpl Woollaston RHG/D, who
General Norton presents SCpl Woollaston with his commendation
22 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
The RCM addresses the Mess at Brickhanging
The Band of The Blues and Royals
t has been a varied and diverse year for the Band, with the winds of change bearing upon its shores once again. It has proven to be challenging in certain respects but also extremely rewarding to witness the resilience, professional approach and adaptability of the individuals within one of the founder members of Army music. The winter months brought with them a previously unheard of intensity with the Band being called upon to work throughout the Christmas period providing support to London District duties, though the light at the end of the tunnel was a brief leave period followed by a week’s adventure training at Capel Curig in North Wales. For this the Band undertook a course in hill walking which culminated in an ascent to the summit of Snowdon in extremely challenging conditions. In addition to the practical aspect we were also schooled in the art of basic navigation and developing a meteorological understanding. Three of the more adventurous members of the Band had the chance to undertake a wintertime kayaking course which proved slightly foolhardy as the water was bitterly cold. This aside they achieved their aim of kayaking down some challenging rapids with LCpl Crofts achieving the accolade of paddling down a waterfall backwards without capsizing. As ever the adventure training program provided a fantastic teambuilding period which helped galvanize the “esprit de corps” that is so unique to The Band of The Blues and Royals. February marked the end of an era with Director of Music Maj Tim Cooper moving on to pastures new. He is a man who really left his mark on the Band and will be cherished as a great person and inspirational leader of men. He embraced the Household Cavalry ethos and helped forge a very strong understanding and relationship between the Regiment and the Band. The Band were honoured to give him a truly ﬁtting dine out in the ﬁne surroundings of the Indian Army Memorial Room at The Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst (RMAS); it proved to be an evocative evening culminating in an homage to Maj Cooper given by WO II (BCM) Marsh through the medium of song (and a ukulele). Stepping into the breech as our new Director of Music is Captain Jason Grifﬁths, a former Bandmaster of the Band with a true understanding of the task ahead. Captain Grifﬁths’ ﬁrst duty with the Band was a challenging
SCpl (Now BCM) Marsh enjoying a rare Mounted Band on his feet
roulement tour at the RMAS at which, as expected, the band performed to an impeccably high standard. Bands are actively encouraged to stamp their own mark during their brief visit and rest assured that’s exactly what we did. The Band provided diverse ensembles during the deployment which really instilled the Ofﬁcer Cadets with a true grounding and understanding of military music. Our tour of duty at the RMAS culminated in the Sovereign’s Parade, which was ofﬁciated by the Sultan of Brunei, whose son was also commissioning that term. With the emergence of spring, preparations began in earnest for the summer season, with Captain Grifﬁths reacquainting himself with his riding skills since his time as Bandmaster. Captain Grifﬁths has always prided himself on the fact that he was never unseated during his riding course many years ago; he did, however manage to rectify this during his refresher training in ménage at Windsor. This year’s Queen’s Birthday Parade was
signiﬁcant for the Band for a number of reasons; ﬁrstly it heralded the return of Staff Corporal Gwyn Thomas from his operational tour in Afghanistan with D Squadron where he has been serving as their 2nd SQMC with great distinction. Having been more familiar with riding shotgun on a Mastiff, he had little time to get reacquainted with playing his tenor horn on horseback. Indeed he delayed his post deployment leave in order to participate in the ceremonial season. It was also the debut summer season for ‘Celt’ (now Mercury) the drum horse, who as a young six-yearold gave a very mature and rounded performance, ably ridden by CoH Paul Kent. During the Band’s performances at Royal Ascot the following week, a number of members of the Band even managed to make it onto the front pages of the National Newspapers with CoH Forsyth being captured helping break up a mass brawl that had broken out in the area surrounding the bandstand (living up to his nickname of “Rambo!”). Shortly after the summer season, the Band bid farewell to their long-suffering
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 23
Musn Gray Happy in his work
Bandmaster; WO I Richard Cregan, who really embraced the cavalry ethos and who had bravely ridden some of the less docile horses in order to prove his worth. He received a memorable sending off at the Band Annual Lunch at the Warrant Ofﬁcers’ and Non Commissioned Ofﬁcers’ Mess HCR. We now welcome our new Bandmaster WO I Ian Collin, who returns to the Band of the Blues and Royals, having left us as a LCoH and principal clarinetist in 2002 to undergo the Corps of Army Music Bandmaster’s Course, and subsequently serving in the Band of the Royal Irish Regiment from 2005 until their disbandment in 2007 and the Light Cavalry Band at Bovington from 2007 until 2011. With the onset of Autumn came the Band’s annual mini-concert series which spanned venues as far aﬁeld as Lincoln and East Grinstead, the latter The Trumpet Major
24 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
Musn Miller tending to the needs of Mounted Band veteran LCpl Witter
providing a sellout Christmas concert that raised a large sum of money for the Army Benevolent Fund and witnessed LCoH Pritchard and LCpl May perform excellent solo renditions of ‘Frosty the Snowman’ and ‘Oh Holy Night’, respectively, to rapturous applause. The concert series climaxed with an atmospheric joint concert with The Band of The Lifeguards at the Guards Chapel in London, which raised a creditable sum for the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund. Throughout this period we missed one of the real characters of the band; Musn Bramley who had been covering trumpet duties for the Queens Lifeguard and received a ‘baptism of ﬁre’ riding the grey Knightsbridge, who even after assurances with regards to the horses reliability found himself ‘hanging on for dear life’ with the horse attempting to rear up whenever he played a note.
The Band performed creditably during this year’s promotions board with both Staff Corporals being promoted to the rank of WO2, however this has sadly led to the Band losing two of its veteran campaigners; WO II Robert Gough having been posted to Headquarters Land in Andover on a staff assignment, and Staff Corporal Gwyn Thomas who will shortly be taking over as the Band Sergeant Major of the Irish Guards Band. WO II Gough leaves after serving more than 22 years with the Band, and having risen through the ranks to both ‘principal cornet’ and ‘Trumpet Major’ before being appointed as Band Corporal Major (and serving in this role over six years). WOII Gough has handed the reins (sic) over to WOII (BCM) Stuart Marsh, the third consecutive generation of the Marsh family to have served in The Blues and Royals.
WOII (BCM) Gough and Major Tim Cooper discussing new horizons
Catering Department by SSgt P Raisborough RLC
ver the last 12 months there have been numerous new faces within the Catering Department and old ones about to leave. WO2 Timney leaving on promotion replaced by SSgt Raisborough, Sgt Wallace replaced by Sgt Passmore and LSgt Bethune replaced by LSgt Watkinson to name a few. Cpl Skelton and Pte Bagudu returned, in April from Op HERRICK 13 with D Sqn, undertaking a gruelling 6 month tour; which saw Pte Bagudu receive promotion and posting to 2 Bn The Parachute Regiment in December 2011. The year started busily, ﬁrst with the State of the Nation in the WOs and NCOs’ Mess, closely followed by HQ Squadron deploying out to Salisbury Plain conducting low level training which involved HCR Chefs conducting some much needed familiarisation training on the ﬁeld kitchen equipment. From the comments that were fed back it was understood that all enjoyed the Chef Support. April saw the return of D Squadron followed by the Medals parade attended by The Princess Royal, an outstanding event. For the marriage of Prince William to Miss Catherine Middleton the Household Cavalry Regiment Catering Department cooks assisted in feeding 4000+ soldiers who were providing security and escorts for the Royal Family. In early May LSgt Gurung volunteered to assist the Coldstream Guards as a member of the Support Staff during a live ﬁring exercise in the Falkland Islands, which added to his already
Sgt Wallace and HCR Chefs putting the ﬁnal touches to the food display at Epsom
packed Military CV; he is an asset not only to this Department but also to the Regiment. The busy summer season was upon us and before we knew it we were preparing for Derby Day at Epsom, the largest private Household Division event of the year. It was a memorable week, preparing for corporate Ladies Day on the Friday followed by the Household Calvary Derby Day on Saturday feeding over 2300+ in total. The chefs worked extremely hard in maintaining a full display so that all could appreciate the cuisine no matter what time the came in for lunch. All the Chefs, Mess staff, the guard and drivers made this weekend a complete success. LSgt Watkinson was identiﬁed as the candidate required by London District
Sweet display for Ladies Day (Derby Day)
to support the Queens Birthday Parade week of 6-10 June 2011 at Horse Guards. He and the team served a VIP Guests and high ranking ofﬁcers from all three services at a cocktail party, receiving high praise. On 14 July almost all the seniors and LSgts, old and new, attend an unforgettable annual London District Dinner Night, which was held in the very prestigious Woolwich Station Ofﬁcers Mess with special guest star Jamie Oliver. This gave Army Chefs the opportunity to work alongside his Chefs from “Restaurant 15” and served as a useful tool for their development. Many functions followed this including VIP picnics for Ascot Races, and the Ofﬁcers Mess Summer Ball with a vast and expansive display of high end food; before breaking up for a well deserved summer leave in mid July. The pace of life started to pick up immediately after summer leave with the Regiment deployed down to Castlemartin range package. The Chefs, once again, impressed all with their musketry and small arms prowess, with our two Gurkha soldiers getting a special mention, and also with the way they had conducted themselves on the Range and their tactics whilst carrying out the live shoot. Pte Bagudu also displayed a phenomenal time in the OFT 1 coming in at 9:15 min, the fastest in the Regiment to date. The Regiment and Catering Department are now preparing for next year with training in Germany, Canada, and all around the UK, coinciding with all the day to day business of Regimental life.
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 25
HCR Features A Subaltern’s Impressions of Serving with Another Regiment: Ex Prairie Thunder III with the Light Dragoons by Ct MDdeB Wilmot RHG/D
n Monday 13 June 2011 Ct CJB Gore Langton RHG/D and I waved goodbye to Windsor as we set off for Robertson Barracks, Swanton Morley, Norfolk; the home of The Light Dragoons (LD). We would be spending until the end of July serving with C Squadron LD, part of the Kings Royal Hussars’ Battle Group (KRH BG), on Exercise Prairie Thunder III in Canada. Our introduction to Swanton Morley conveniently coincided with a Potential Ofﬁcers’ visit to the Mess, which included Ofﬁcer Cadets from Sandhurst, alongside university students and the newly unemployed. The Regiment lived up to their reputation of having a lively mess life and we ﬁnished the evening determined to bring the sport of ‘ﬁre-ball hockey’ back with us to Combermere, Ct Gore Langton proudly wearing the scars of the inaugural match. Our short time up in Norfolk will be remembered for the fantastic reception we received from all with whom we came into contact. We were exceptionally well hosted in the Ofﬁcers’ Mess by those B Sqn ofﬁcers not yet in Canada and felt very welcome indeed. No sooner had we arrived in Norfolk were we leaving for RAF Brize Norton, the ﬁrst stop on our journey to BATUS. The British Army Training Unit Sufﬁeld (BATUS) has been used for exercising troops since 1969, when Colonel Gaddaﬁ orchestrated a coup in Libya, and proceeded to close down British military installations located at El Adem and Tobruk. There was, therefore, a sense of irony and indeed relevance as we deployed to BATUS during a time of such unease in Libya.
deployment to the prairie was focused on making sure vehicles were ready for exercise and on getting to know our troops. I was to take the vacant post of 1st Troop Leader and would be assisted by Sgt Rix. LD primarily recruit in the North of England and the Geordie sense of humour was immediately evident on my ﬁrst day on the tank park. The contagious wittiness of all the soldiers proved to be resilient throughout the 25 days we would later spend on exercise and was a key contributor in the maintenance of morale. The Prairie Thunder exercise can essentially be seen in two phases; ﬁrst, a progressive live ﬁring package developing from single car ranges to battle group operations; and secondly, a tactical effects simulation (TES) exercise focussed around an emergent scenario with a live enemy, played for us by A Sqn LD. Throughout the 25 days of exercise our every move would be watched, and at various junctions reviewed, by Observer Mentors (OMs). C Sqns OMs were ably led by Capt M J I Dalzel-Job, Scots Guards, assisted by Lts Mawson and Hills from the Household Cavalry Regiment. The live ﬁring package, whilst being relatively prescriptive for safety reasons, ran incredibly smoothly and was a great success for C Sqn. The progressive nature of the package makes for a steady introduction to life
on the prairie and can set the conditions for a successful exercise. Indeed, our strong performance as a squadron supporting a combat logistics patrol in the live ﬁring phase saw us later in the TES phase speciﬁcally chosen for a similar tasking. After ten days of live ﬁring we began a two day transition both from live rounds to TES and also from the KRH BG to the Intelligence, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition Reconnaissance Group (ISTAR Recce Gp), led by Lt Col A G C Fair DSO, the LD Commanding Ofﬁcer. This phase of the exercise would see C Sqn distancing itself from medium armour taskings, such as supporting bridge crossings and Combat Logistic Patrols, and focussing on ﬁnding the enemy, the primary and indeed elementary task of a brigade reconnaissance squadron. Our initial deployment on this phase of the exercise would involve inﬁltrating an enemy recce screen at night and scouting an international boundary before the KRH BG followed with force. The culmination of this phase was a BG assault on an enemy stronghold, all the time with information on the enemy being fed to the KRH BG from the ISTAR Recce Gp in a timely and accurate manner. Exercise Prairie Thunder III was a great success for both C squadron and for the ISTAR Recce Group. There were various exercise-isms that could have
The author (far right), with his crew, after an altercation on the Prairie
On arrival at Sufﬁeld camp we were immediately introduced to the key players that became a focal point of all small talk, orders groups and after action reviews for the coming exercise; namely the dust and the mosquitoes. BATUS is like Salisbury Plain on steroids, with dust in double dosage inﬁltrating every inch of space it can inhabit. This tyrant is matched only by the mighty mosquitoes, whose breeding rate is menacing and whose determination is commendable – I once counted ﬁfteen bites on my right hand alone! The week in camp prior to our
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 27
been improved, for example, with essentially two battle groups exercising on the prairie at one time, the number of enemy forces was limited and thus as the recce group we often found ourselves in Observation Posts (OPs) with nothing to report. However, from a personal perspective three learning points in particular stand out: Flexibility, Leadership and Tactics. Before D-day we learned the necessity of remaining ﬂexible in all circumstances as our deployment time and date was constantly moving. No plan survives contact and it became necessary as the exercise progressed to be prepared to receive a change of tasking on the line of departure or cross deck as yet another vehicle broke down. After crashing my own vehicle into a concealed rock and losing my driver and operator to the medics, my crew saw no less than four new faces rotating through turrets before our wounded returned to the troop. Battle is a business of confusion and dealing with such trivial anomalies as crew changes or unreliable vehicles requires one to remain ﬂexible at all times. As a junior troop leader, fresh from the factory of RMA Sandhurst and the Troop Leaders course, Ex Prairie Thunder was my chance to put into practice the leadership learned at RMAS and the tactics learned at Warminster. From a leadership perspective I was in a fortunate position having my ﬁrst command with another regiment, where minor hiccoughs can be corrected and one’s style of leadership can be ﬁne tuned before returning to one’s own regiment. I was also fortunate to have superb crew commanders, making the
Ct Gore-Langton, second from right, with members of his LD troop
tactical management of the troop a more straightforward task. My steepest learning curve was undoubtedly in troop and squadron level tactics of a brigade reconnaissance regiment; working both as an organic BG asset and as a brigade asset, as C Sqn were for the latter half of the exercise. I beneﬁtted hugely from the tutorship of Major James Chandler, C Sqn leader, who demonstrated the vitality of having well rehearsed squadron Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). This, combined with the necessity to remain ﬂexible, meant that when assigned to a task at the last minute we were able to deliver with minimal fuss or confusion at a very high standard. Rehearsing SOPs through discussion on sand models was undoubtedly the most effective way to ensure the operational plan was
understood by all. This would not have been possible without the foundation of SOPs rehearsed on exercises at home. My experiences on Ex Prairie Thunder can only have contributed to making me a stronger troop leader. Being able to practice one’s core business for such a stretch of time is a rare opportunity and I have no doubt that I return to the Household Cavalry Regiment with an invigorated energy and enthusiasm for the job in hand. It was a great privilege to serve with The Light Dragoons, whose reputation as a strong and professional regiment was more than met. I thoroughly enjoyed my time both in camp at Swanton Morley and in Canada and am grateful to all those who contributed to the experience as a whole.
Into the Heart of Darkness – B Squadron in Belize
by Major P J Williams MC RHG/D
Every time I think I’m gonna wake up back in the jungle... When I was here, I wanted to be there; when I was there, all I could think of was getting back into the jungle.” So says Captain Benjamin L Willard in Francis Ford Coppola’s epic Apocalypse Now. B Sqn’s deployment to Belize mercifully came about as an offer of assistance to the Infantry Battle School (IBS) rather than the targeted elimination of Marlon Brando gone native. Ex GRIM WARRIOR is the ﬁnal exercise of the tactical element of Platoon Commanders’ Division (PCD) and is based in Belize. Ex GRIM WARRIOR encompasses all that a Platoon Commander should have learned
28 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
LCpls Jackson and Wayper in dawn’s early light
some introductory briefs and obligatory snake fondling we headed out to the Pine Ridge Training Area aboard a ﬂeet of incongruous yellow American style school buses LCpl Kershaw puts his charming skills to the test whose drivers seemed exclusively and generously throughout his time in Brecon. Our fuelled by bottles of early morning role was to provide each platoon with Corona cerveza. a Reconnaissance Section, a fourth manoeuvre section to give the young The exercise was split into three phases: Infantry ofﬁcers the chance to interact Reception; Staging and Onward with soldiers from another teeth arm. Integration (RSOI); the conﬁrmatory exercise and live ﬁring. RSOI was The initial move from Brize Norton to conducted over a ﬁve-day period and Belize City did not disappoint for those included all the elements that would used to travel courtesy of the Royal be later brought to bear in the exercise. Air Force. As the wall of close Central For most, it was really an introduction American heat hit us at the top of the to living in the jungle with all the trials, aircraft steps the realization dawned tribulations, bugs and Howler monkeys that we somewhere tropical, somewhere that one comes to expect beneath the very foreign. Sweating and swatting at Belizean canopy. mosquitoes we awaited the arrival of our baggage, allocation of rooms and to With Phases 1 and 2 complete, the ﬁnd out what lay ahead. students entered into the conﬁrmatory exercise starting with a company attack Having deployed to Belize for on a jungle camp. Whilst PCD prepared successive exercises PCD is a very well for their upcoming task the Sqn oiled machine and took us under their enhanced their jungle survival skills at wing without breaking stride. After the hands of local guides and trackers.
Who needs Tesco in the Jungle?
Fuelled by a tasty roasted pig and our thirst quenched from water vines we prepared our overnight shelters. Some were more successful than others. The Sqn’s Fijian complement built what appeared to be a small town hall on a perfectly level plot of land on the side of a hill. Whereas the author of this article constructed a medieval instrument of torture upon which it was impossible to sleep or remain horizontal or snakefree for long. Wiser in the ways of the jungle, elements of the Sqn led PCD into their Forming Up Position (FUP) and Fire Support positions whilst the remainder conducted reconnaissance and surveillance on subsequent objectives in and around the settlement of St Augustin. There then followed a series of rotations ranging from the occupation and defence of a Patrol Base, Framework Patrols in a local village and gruelling Camp Attack on an objective aptly named The Temple of Doom. For the majority, our time in the Jungle was coming to an end and a few Chosen Men volunteered to remain behind for another eight days to assist in the live-ﬁre package. Our next objective was the small peninsula holiday resort
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 29
A mysterious jungle rash infects the Squadron Leader
of San Pedro for a few days of R&R and Adventurous Training. After the preceding weeks’ depravations the Squadron set about their R&R with some considerable gusto. The training in Belize that soldiers from
Resting in the scrub LCsoH Butchard and Qio, LCpls Jackson, Wayper and Waisale and Tprs Cooper and Mills
B and other Sqns have received during the course of the last year has formed an important foundation in their core skill. They have been at the receiving end of some of the best instructors the Infantry has to offer and working alongside the next generation of Infantry Ofﬁcers.
I also think the experience has been mutually beneﬁcial. The HCR has been exposed to the very core of the Infantry, we have learnt from them but critically also shown that reconnaissance is our business and we are very good at it regardless of platform or environment.
No. 66 Dress - Riverine CEFO Undress
The Forward Air Controllers (FAC) Course
by Lt HBH Boyt LG
s I waited at RAF Leeming, Yorkshire for the opening brief from OC JFACTSU, (Joint Forward Air Control Training & Standards Unit) what was immediately apparent was just what an eclectic course we were on. We had the obvious strong turnout
30 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
from The Royal Regiment of Artillery and the RAF Regiment, but FAC course 323 also had a few ‘randoms’ on its ORBAT. These included, an Estonian (who had to put his ﬁngers in his ears at various stages of the course due to protective markings of some of the
lessons; although, he seemed to know a worrying amount about a lot of the ‘secret’ content!), an SBS and SAS Sgt, a RE Capt, QDG and QRL Cpls and, for the ﬁrst time, a REME Cpl. We were taught by a host of SNCOs from just about every Corps and Armed Service
in the MOD, including: CoH Baxter LG, RAF pilots and our RM Chief Instructor (affectionately known as ‘Laser Beam’ due to his ﬁery red hair). The majority of the course will deploy on Herrick 17 with 19 Bde, working within Fire Support Teams (FST) or in BG and Bde Tactical Air Control Parties (TACPs) and the SF boys could of course go anywhere! The ﬁrst two weeks of the course were predominantly ﬁlled with ‘death by PowerPoint’; with an enormous amount of information on maps, weapons effects, ﬂight proﬁles, guided weapons and CAS (Close Air Support) doctrine. It was with great anticipation and excitement that we headed to the North York Moors for our ﬁrst day of low level ‘dry’ attacks. Settling into the OP, this consisted of four Land Rovers and a brew kit, we were buzzed by the ﬁrst jet and straight into it – “Aah hello Javelin 31, this is aaagh Jackpot 16, radio check over, aaaagh I mean comms check”, and the reply in a very cool and collected voice: “LIMA CHARLIE how me” – what?! However it wasn’t long before we got the hang of the new voice procedure, but it still sounds strange hearing “contact” used so casually; for a pilot this simply means he can see something being described. In fact most things were fairly unfamiliar up in Yorkshire, not least staying in transit accommodation and messing in the Ofﬁcers’ Mess, RAF Leeming. The Mess made us very welcome for the 8 weeks of the course, but it was just, well, different. Some observations: RAF pilots and aircrew seem to always be in their coveralls (although as I quickly learnt they are called ‘ﬂight suits’!) and were often found moving their fanned out hands to demonstrate their latest dogﬁght move. There was also the RAF’s general lack of knowledge of the Household Cavalry, there were a lot of genuine questions about second incomes, and most worryingly of all that
All arms integration, from the left, Lt Boyt LG, RA, RE and RAF Regt.
we had a ’green side’ at all - “Don’t you lot just ride horses?“. Of course, a lot of it was ‘banter’ and I usually got my own back by asking if they all listened to the Top Gun soundtrack on repeat. What was also evident was aside from all the jokes and despite our differing military backgrounds, we were all there to learn to be FACs, and were only ever tested on our grasp of CAS (Close Air Support) and professionalism. We quickly moved onto medium level controls as well as FMV (full motion video) and Attack Helicopter controls, of which 90 percent were done on ‘the hill’ with 100 Sqn’s team of very skilled and experienced Hawk pilots (the jets the Red Arrows ﬂy). Owing to a mix of bad weather and the cost of putting a jet in the air, a large majority of our practice controls were on the state of the art simulators at JFACTSU. We also got the chance to control Tornado GR4 jets from RAF Marham during our live controls in Taine, Scotland. This taught us an
100 Squadron’s Hawk T1 on a low level ‘attack’ run.
important lesson as the regular pilots have a relative lack of CAS experience compared to the JFACTSU pilots, who are doing it nearly every day and not least because this time we were actually dropping ‘live’ bombs. However, the end effect was pretty disappointing as the 3Kg ‘bomb’ usually missed its target by at least 50m, and excreted a pathetic puff of grey smoke; although I can assure you this was only due to the bombs unguided nature and not my talk on. Never mind, we got the four live controls we needed to leave the course qualiﬁed. Towards the end of the course I was fortunate enough to get a ﬂight in one of 100 Sqn’s routine training ﬂights. I stepped into the cockpit conﬁdent I would enjoy the ﬂight and not suffer from some of the horriﬁc motion sickness stories. How wrong I was. After pulling some of the moves I had seen simulated by hands in the mess I was awash with cold sweats and a
A 3kg ‘bomb’ being dropped over Spadeadam, Cumbria
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 31
stomach ready to empty its contents. “You have control”: my signal to take the stick. “Roger, I have control”: keeping ‘her’ steady was easier than you may think. It was akin to steering a yacht: pick a point on your heading and steer to it. However, the amazing responsiveness of the aircraft and the sensitivity of the controls amazed me. I ﬂew up to Scotland, but handed over control for some low level stomach churning stunts. After a polite ‘salute’ to Her Majesty’s estate at Balmoral and a near ‘bird strike’ (for which Andy’s resulting manoeuvre ﬁlled my
G trousers and very nearly my mask with vomit) I took control and headed back to Leeming. Owing to bad weather we were forced to make our approach on instruments alone, a pretty strange feeling as the runway only came ‘visual’ 400m out. I walked away truly grateful for such an amazing opportunity, but at the same time quite glad to be back on safe ground. So what next? Our deployment to BATUS in early 2012 looms in preparation for 1 Mech Bde’s deployment to HERRICK 18. This will see the regiment’s TACP
In ﬂight, somewhere over Scotland
deploy as part of BG HQ, as well as newly trained FACs from the regiment being incorporated in the Sqns. As always we jump on any opportunity to ‘get some controls in’ in order to maintain the currency of the Regiment’s FACs, this task should be eased by the recent withdrawal of a large part of the Tornado ﬂeet from Op ELLAMY (Libya). We are continuing to train and develop the next budding Household Cavalry FACs through the screening process and wish them all the best of luck when they get up to JFACTSU.
Post ﬂight – sweaty and sick!
A Troop Leader’s experience of Op HERRICK 13
by Capt JCT Rawdon-Mogg RHG/D
t was an amazing experience and an absolute privilege to lead the soldiers of One Troop, D Squadron on Operation HERRICK 13 last winter. While Sandhurst prepared me very well for the rigours of junior command, it was not until I became a Tp Ldr in D Sqn in April 2009 that I realised how much can only be learned on the job. I found the relationship between Troop Leader and Tp CoH to be particularly important, especially in D Sqn where there was already an abundance of operational experience. CoH Sampson, recently returned from Bassingbourn as an instructor, had experience in droves and always had the answer to my many questions for which I will be eternally grateful!
1 Troop, D Sqn
32 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment
Our task in Helmand lay along Highway One, the main arterial route from Herat to Kabul. Together with the Afghan National Army we secured the road
itself and the surrounding areas. This on its own was not a hugely arduous task and so we were able to take on additional duties around the Taskforce Helmand Area of Operations. Each troop had the opportunity to operate in different areas in support of other units either providing manpower or the formidable ﬁrepower of CVR(T). We found that the Scimitar still has enormous utility in Afghanistan and the arrival of a sabre troop soon sent the insurgents running. This meant that very quickly the three Scimitar troops found themselves in high demand across the province. One and Two Troops were mounted on the Jackal, a vehicle which I found to be extremely capable. It is very reliable, rarely breaks down, something for which my drivers were continually thankful. A place that a Jackal could not reach was generally not worth getting to in the ﬁrst place and at the (slightly stressful) moments that vehicles were bogged in we always managed to haul them out easily. When required the ﬁrepower of a Jackal Troop (two HMGs, two GMGs and four GPMGs) packed a ﬁrm punch, easily overmatching anything from the insurgent arsenal. By deploying two troops in Jackal we were able to provide an easily dismountable force. We were used in this role on several occasions, most notably when we were detached to D Company, 2 PARA south west of Gereshk. For ten days the troop formed an extra multiple alongside D Company, the ANA and a platoon from the BRF on a deliberate show of force and ground domination operation. We worked in high threat areas for 10 hour patrols on the ground at a time of year that was becoming increasingly warm. This was not only the most challenging but also the most rewarding soldiering of the tour as the troop gelled together more than ever. By the end of the tour we felt like a family and every individual strength or weakness was known by all. On our return to Windsor we had 4 days in barracks before our medals parade, at which I was particularly grateful to have the same 12 men on parade as had boarded the plane to Afghanistan 6 months earlier. I was posted with immediate effect after post tour leave which signalled the end of my time as a Troop Leader. On reﬂection it is difﬁcult to imagine a more rewarding job and it was with considerable regret that I moved on.
Panda Ridge SCpl Gibson LCoH Nicol and CoH Harrison
in the same squadron, troop leaders naturally form a close bond and it seemed a very ﬁtting way to get back into normal life by sampling the polar opposite of Gereshk Bazaar! After nine days of behaviour comparable to the
ﬁlm The Hangover, the troop leaders of D Sqn landed at Heathrow and went their separate ways. Altogether, my experience in D Sqn was that of enormous fun, coupled with the busiest 18 months of my life so far.
It would be remiss of me not to mention the troop leaders post tour trip to Las Vegas and New York. As junior ofﬁcers
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 33
Images From Household Cavalry Regiment
B Squadron and the Temple of Doom - Caracol Mayan Temple
LCpl Perkins strangling Tpr McVey for using all the make-up
Left: Stalking in Scotland From left to right: The estate stalker, SSgt Macmillan, Tprs Luck and Moloney make a successful withdrawal LCpl Coulson gets his throwing arm in
34 â– Household Cavalry Regiment
LCpl Murphy and CoH Scott ‘Charlie don’t surf’ - at Castlemartin
C Sqn EX IRON MONGREL
The moment when Lt Sudlow realised he had misread the dress code
The lower rungs of Jacob's Ladder One of B Squadron’s more ambitious PT sessions
Ct Turnor demonstrates that Defence cuts will not affect our mobility
Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 35
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment Foreword
By Lieutenant Colonel D E Hughes, The Blues and Royals Commanding Ofﬁcer, Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment 2011 has been the year in which the much used traditional mantra ‘you can’t change Knightsbridge’ has been thoroughly tested. Whilst the Royal Wedding in April 2011 rightly snatched the headlines, it is in other areas that we have perhaps made the most progress. At a time when the Army is fundamentally re-evaluating the way it is structured and managed, we have taken the opportunity to re-shape the way we do business, focusing our efforts on remaining relevant, delivering our tasks better, and making the most of the resources we have, whilst maintaining the high levels of professionalism and excellence for which all in the Household Cavalry are well known.
offered the opportunity to strip Knightsbridge back to ﬁrst principles. Without trying to reinvent the wheel, numerous ‘sacred cows’ have been placed squarely in the crosshairs of the Adjutant and RCM. The new mantra is now “Soldier First”, so we have worked hard to develop the welfare and sports facilities; improve the living accommodation; offer soldiers more variety; and increase time-off.
As the Army struggles to bring commitments and resources into balance, redundancies are taking their toll on manpower and morale. It is a difﬁcult time, and we will continue to support those individuals affected as best we can. Although there is no immediate threat to the Household Cavalry, we must remain proactive, putting HCMR in an operational context, emphasising that whilst our output is ceremonial, our soldiers are operationally focused and relevant, and well suited to the complexity and subtlety that future conﬂicts are likely to offer.
The accommodation at Hyde Park Barracks is very tired. Within ﬁnancial and other constraints, the QM’s Department have installed new washing machines on all ﬂoors, acquired better-quality beds, improved fault-reporting and provided ﬁnance for The Commanding ofﬁcer with his charger, Falkland self-help projects, the latat Regimental Training, the emphasis ter used extensively at Troop level. We shifted signiﬁcantly this year towards have revamped the soldiers’ welfare ‘green’ training. Under the direction of facilities, including a fully functioning WO2 Ireland RHG/D, we exploited the gym and new games room, the latter extensive operational experience within opened by Colonel RHG/D in memory the Regiment to practice soldiers in of our late Welfare Ofﬁcer, Capt Chris FIBUA, ‘green zone’ ﬁghting, live ﬁring, Sayer RHG/D. Next on the list is the bayonet ﬁghting and numerous other Queen’s Life Guard accommodation, challenges. With the majority of new which is suffering the ravages of time. soldiers now coming to Mounted Duty ﬁrst, it is vital that they maintain a basic Sport and PT is now a regular part of level of military skills and an operational the soldiers’ lives at HCMR, greatly mind-set whilst at Knightsbridge, enhanced by the recent arrival of Sgt before posting to HCR and the rigours Francis from the Royal Army School of of current operations in Afghanistan. Physical Training, the ﬁrst permanent ‘corps’ PTI HCMR has had for many The Household Cavalry Training years. This has had an immediate Wing in Windsor has been thoroughly impact with a decrease in the number reviewed during 2011. Having made of downgraded personnel, excellent great strides under the direction of Capt physical test pass-rates, and some major D J Payne LG and his team, a recent sporting success in the London District Army Inspectorate visit identiﬁed areas Cross-Country, Basketball, Orienteering for further work. The plan this year is to and Volleyball championships. We trial a shortened Khaki Ride of 10 weeks, also have a thriving boxing team, with maximising equitation training at the Tpr Marchant LG being selected for expense of some drill and kit-cleaning. the Army Squad. This variety has We will also link it more closely with a been embraced by the soldiers, and de-heated Kit Ride as two elements of the training facilities are being used what is a single Mounted Dutyman’s extensively. course. The new OC HCTW, Capt T W J Davie LG, will lead the charge. Whilst equitation remains the priority
The Royal Wedding in April was an event to remember, and although we were a supporting act, we were a highly visible one and there were countless opportunities for things to go wrong. Mostly they went right, with particular credit to Tpr Baker RHG/D for his swift transformation from ‘downed’ Mounted Dutyman to Street Liner after his mount slipped outside the Abbey. Throughout the day, and the rehearsals and media storm that preceded it, the whole Regiment performed exceptionally. That morning I watched with pride as our youngest troopers were interviewed by multiple BBC, ITV, CNN and NBC cameras, often going out live to 10’s of millions of viewers, whilst preparing their horses and kit for the parade. The eyes of the world were upon the Regiment, and they delivered. Outstanding! But it is not these events that deﬁne us, and the change over of most key positions in late-2010 and early 2011
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 37
Using the catalyst of the Royal Wedding, we have embraced social and other media, raising the Regiment’s proﬁle both here and abroad. Above all, at a time when cuts have been at the top of the Army’s agenda, we have sought to consistently demonstrate the importance and relevance of our State Ceremonial role, and to emphasise the link between ceremonial excellence and achievement on operations. We have dived headlong into the world of social media, attracting a growing following on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ hcmr) and Twitter, with Capt J S Hulme RHG/D and now Capt A G R Owen RHG/D, doing sterling work as our media ofﬁcers. We have placed more emphasis on Community Engagement, Defence
Diplomacy and Charitable Fundraising, with a plethora of visitors to Hyde Park Barracks, both domestic and international. Maj N K TwumasiAnkrah RHG/D has led on Community Engagement, actively reaching out to all elements of society. Under the guidance of the recently retired SCpl Hadden LG, Open Day at Regimental Training became Open Weekend and the crowds turned out in large numbers for both days. Capt A S Lin RHG/D and the Riding Master, Capt M A Avison LG took the Musical Ride to Norfolk, Scotland, Derbyshire and Birmingham, and we narrowly avoided cancelling programmed events after a Strangles outbreak. Defence Diplomacy has been a prominent feature, and there has been a constant stream of visitors as both the MOD and FCO use the
Household Cavalry as a window onto the Army and as an exemplar of all that is uniquely British.
period of inspections, as horses returned from grass and State Kit was withdrawn from hibernation. Already media interest in HCMR was beginning to build, and the Unit Press Ofﬁcer, Capt J S Hulme RHG/D watched his diary ﬁll alarmingly. Much was done to review internal processes – not re-inventing the wheel, but challenging the mantra that ‘you can’t change Knightsbridge’. Accommodation was signiﬁcantly improved with new beds and washing machines as the Commanding Ofﬁcer’s Directive began to take visible effect, and all departments were challenged to put ‘soldier ﬁrst’.
By March, preparations for the Wedding were in full swing, but the immediate focus was the Commanding Ofﬁcer’s Horse Inspection building up into the preparations for Major General’s Inspections. There was also an upsurge in the number of visits, both ofﬁcial and charitable – a trend that was to continue throughout the year. Among the early visitors were the Armed Forces Pay Review Body, ACGS and the Omani Ambassador.
2011 has been an historic year, with the Royal Wedding being an event that will live long in our memories. 2012 promises more of the same with the Diamond Jubilee and Olympics. These events hit the headlines, but it is the work behind the scenes that will make the difference to our future. That is why we must strive for long term relevance, operate as an innovative organisation, developing ideas to deliver our tasks better and make the most of the resources we have. We enter 2012 well placed to meet these challenges. Success will be collective, as will the effort.
Diary of Events
011 was principally shaped by the Royal Wedding in April, and with much preparation for next year’s Diamond Jubilee and Olympics already in train, the tempo has remained high throughout the year. It began with much changeover of personnel in the latter part of 2010 and early 2011, with the new Commanding Ofﬁcer, Adjutant, RCM and many others arriving in quick succession. The principal public event was the Musical Ride’s journey to Zurich, where they found themselves the focus of a major show. February saw the traditionally busy
April was dominated by the Major General’s Inspection on 19 Apr and the Royal Wedding on 29 Apr. The
The 1st Division of The Sovereign’s Escort crosses Horse Guards after the Royal Wedding
38 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
boost to manpower. As ever, there was great demand for visits throughout this time, as HCMR becomes more heavily involved in Defence Diplomacy and Community Engagement. Despite these pressures, the Queen’s Birthday Parade went extremely smoothly, with HCMR enjoying an even greater than usual share of the limelight in the absence of the King’s Troop RHA. After the Garter Ceremony there was a brief respite in parades, which was used to catch up on MATTs and career courses. The Support Riders were also invited to their ﬁrst AGM, as we seek to integrate them more fully into Regimental life.
Adjt ready to ﬁght
world’s press descended on Hyde Park Barracks for a Media Day on 15 Feb: this was an enormously complex event that facilitated live broadcasts from Japan to California, with every journalist wanting a small exclusive – a real Regimental effort. The Major General’s Inspection was the last for Maj Gen W G Cubitt IG, and took place under the world’s biggest ‘Blue-Red-Blue’ – Peninsula Tower’s cladding during refurbishment was made suitable Regimental. The Royal Wedding was a spectacular success, and is reported in detail elsewhere in the Journal. Sufﬁce to say that providing a Captain’s Escort, Sovereign’s Escort, Staircase Party and Path-Lining Party made signiﬁcant demands on HCMR, but the enormous effort was rewarded with a massive global audience. It was a genuinely historic day that will be long remembered. There was little respite as HCMR moved from there straight into the Richmond Trophy, an exceptionally closely fought event won by Tpr Cox RHG/D, and Cavalry Memorial Sunday. The following Monday held the visit of the French Defence Minister to MOD, before planning and rehearsals began for the State Visit of President Obama in May. While this did not involve an Escort, it did mean several Staircase Parties were required several days before the Major General’s Review. In the meantime, Syria Ride passed out, giving a welcome
Following the resounding success of the Motcomb Street Party, which raised a substantial amount for the HCCCF, the Regiment headed for Bodney and Regimental Training. This began with a signiﬁcantly more ambitious Ex TRYOUT than in previous years, with wider participation and more realistic scenarios. This was attended by the new Major General, Maj Gen G P R Norton GG, on his ﬁrst visit. Open Day became Open Weekend by popular demand, and proved hugely popular, with crowds coming from afar. We welcomed tent-peggers from South Africa and show-jumpers from the Swedish and Italian Armies, as well
as Inter-Services show-jumping teams. Training culminated in a signiﬁcantly more ambitious ﬁled exercise than in previous years, with soldiers taking part in Green Zone ﬁghting, bayonet ﬁghting, FIBUA, live ﬁring and more, ﬁnishing with a surprise stretcher race. There was also the release of inter mess parties and games. Normal duties continued over Summer Leave, with Queen’s Life Guard maintaining a high standard of turnout, despite interruption from the Olympic Volleyball Test Event on Horse Guards. September was varied, with Hodson’s Horse seeing full HCMR participation, as well as many more visits, including one from HMS Westminster’s company. Spruce Meadows International Show in Canada was a highlight for those who went, and a team trained assiduously for the Cambrian Patrol. The horses returned in early October in preparation for the Turkish State Visit, with a the large number of new personnel on parade (three of the four divisional commanders were ﬁrst time out) adding to the pressure as it followed closely after the Lord Mayor’s show and Remembrance Sunday. The Lord Mayor’s show was of particular note, as the Swiss Guilds of Zurich, in full historic costume, and many others led to HCMR turning out over 120 horses on the day. The State Visit was well received, with the impact of Squadron Equitation Instructors being felt, and the Regiment rolled into a busy Christmas period tired, but in good heart. Next year promises to be signiﬁcantly busier.
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 39
The Life Guards Squadron LG Sqn after the Military Skills Phase at Regimental Training
his has been a huge year for HCMR and of course for The Life Guards Squadron. The biggest event of this century so far for the United Kingdom happened during this year the Royal Wedding of HRH The Duke of Cambridge and Miss Catherine Middleton - but more of this to follow shortly. Last year it was reported that SHQ was working hard to get to grips with juggling the constant manpower pulls: getting soldiers on courses for HCR; pushing out our ceremonial requirements; and getting soldiers moved on to HCR. Good progress has
been made in this department, ﬁrst helped signiﬁcantly by soldiers arriving with several courses already under their belt which previously SHQ had to get them on, and secondly by the very adept and dab hand of SCM Gibson who has these complex movements of men well under control. Over this past year we have sent at least 25 Troopers to HCR who have served their ‘probation’ here at HCMR, which demonstrates the Sqn’s high turnover, not to mention all the other postings in and out. All are doing well. Of further interest, we have also deployed LCpl Hinchley to Kabul for Op
HERRICK 14, and at the time of writing this article have received good reports. LCpl Lewis will take his place at the end of the year. Soldiers have also been encouraged to go on courses slightly outside of the normal requirement, with Tpr Dumbrell passing the All Arms Pre Parachute Selection course (P Company) with a very high grade late last year, and this year Tpr Marchant passed through successfully too. Huge congratulations should go to them for achieving this very tough feat whilst serving at HCMR, which is far from ideal in location for training purposes. Commiserations to Tpr Beckett, who was badly injured in a fall on the Trinasium (basically a big
Tpr Romankiw and LCoH Lindsay of the Advance Guard, leading the way for the Sovereign’s Escort at the Royal Wedding
40 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
of dismounted training in the form of a 36 Hour Military Skills exercise. This took place after the Open Weekend, and rounded off a very impressive week for the Sqn. Open weekend in itself was also a huge success, with a large amount raised from the work by all for the HCCCF. The Sqn fared well in the ‘Grand Prix ‘, with LCpls Miller and Hedley and Tpr Rolfe taking 2,4 & 5th places respectively - well done to them, and to Tpr Ellis who came third in the Regimental Show-jumping Competition. In the Junior Handy Hunter, LCpl Malaney & Tpr Rolfe, stormed home with 1st place, much to the delight of all. Captain’s Escort for TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in The Mall
boys climbing frame) just prior to test week, By all accounts he was on his way to a strong pass. There is always a next time ...
of credit for behaving as well as they did. It must have been quite something for them to experience; nothing like any parade any of them have been on before.
As alluded to in the introduction, it has been an immense year for the Sqn, with the key highlight being our role in the Royal Wedding in April. It was a fabulous day, and not without its own pressure, knowing that a global audience of some 2 billion people were watching it. The noise from the crowds of well-wishers whilst moving along the Escort route was something that is hard to put into words. It was a complete wall of noise, deafening in its intensity. Probably the main thought going through anyone’s head, and certainly the Squadron Leader’s, was “just please don’t fall off…and don’t drop your sword either!!” All in all, the Sqn acquitted itself superbly with an extremely high level of turn-out achieved by those on parade, and rightly so. The horses were the unsung heroes of the day and should get a large degree
In the early part of the year, HCMR carried out its ﬁrst Major General’s Parade since 2009, having missed out last year due to the unusual timing of the Opening of Parliament. As to be expected, the Squadron performed very well, leaving Maj Gen Cubitt very satisﬁed. The cherry on the already substantial cake was The Queen’s Birthday Parade, which the Sqn had the honour to lead, in the old fashion as the King’s Troop RHA, following an outbreak of the seriously contagious disease Strangles, were not present and unfortunately for them unable to take part in the action this year. Once we had the key parades wrapped up, focus as always switched to Regimental Training at Bodney Camp in Norfolk. This year was different to most with the inclusion of an element
Sandwiched in between the Junior and Senior Handy Hunter was the Military Skills Exercise, which was a competition between all the multiples that took part. The exercise comprised a night insertion into various hide locations, and then a series of stands throughout the day, culminating in a tough three mile stretcher race. Some of those within the multiples have had very little exposure to a number of the activities on the various stands, such as the FIBUA (Fighting In Built Up Areas), bayonet ﬁghting and CAS (Close Air Support) stands. Thus, this was a real eye opener for them, as well as the Directing Staff, who discovered that some of the least expected candidates for overt aggression at bayonet ﬁghting were in fact the most enthusiastically ferocious of them all……step forward Capt A Wallis and Tpr Day, who really did do some damage to that dummy! In all cases the Sqn did fantastically well, with bags of enthusiasm and professionalism. Extra praise goes to LCoH Brophy and LCoH Lindsay, whose multiples came ﬁrst and second respectively in this competition: it was a supreme effort by them and overall by the whole Sqn. The most encouraging fact though is that all those
The Life Guards Squadron about to break into trot on The Queen’s Birthday Parade
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 41
who took part in this exercise seemed to thoroughly enjoy it, and are all raring to get to HCR in the future. The ﬁnal week for the Sqn was rounded off by the Handy Hunter, which the Sqn again dominated. It was almost a toss up between the two pairs of LG Leader and SCM, against their opposite numbers in the RHG/D Sqn. In the end, LG prevailed by a mere 0.5 of a second. If the results had been reversed…it really would have been too much to bear!! Mixed in to all of this, the Sqn had a day out on Adventurous Training, kayaking on a local river, which rapidly turned into inter-troop warfare. It did not take long before every member of the Sqn was completely soaked to the bone, and
there was not a single boat remaining that had not been capsized and sunk. This rather explains why none of us opted for a career in the Navy. There was also the annual beach ride, blessed with glorious weather, and as always another superb day. Indeed one local beach goer commented to the SCM that she had never seen a group of people getting on so well and assisting each other, very much sharing the fun and the work of the day to such a strong degree ; testimony to a well bonded team, and the hard work of those within it. This Hail and Farewell list below demonstrates the turbulence that the Sqn faces, and the challenges that this brings. The Squadron Leader, Maj NPG van Cutsem, moves on to Staff College
in and the Sqn warmly welcomes in his place Maj CT Meredith-Hardy; Lt AGF Horne is ﬁnally being allowed to go to HCR early in 2012, where he will still be a crow; Capt TWJ Davie gets a belated welcome to the fold, who moves in to the Second in Command slot in summer 2012, and the Sqn also says farewell to CoH Radford CGC, with our very best wishes for his future as a civilian, and to CsoH Jaworski and Streets, who move on to their next challenges. And we also lose Capt RJ Gordon-Dean to Eton CCF, where he has been posted as a Cadet, although he claims to be their Adjutant, and we welcome Capt FH Hopkinson in his place. Incoming are CsoH Williams and Stafford, who are both old HCMR hands, so the troops will move from one set of conﬁdent hands to another.
The Blues and Royals Mounted Squadron
t the beginning of the year the Squadron welcomed to SCM Ireland, and said goodbye to SCM McNamara and Capt J Core who had stepped in as 2IC. They played a crucial role guiding the Sqn to success over the previous years and will be sorely missed. The new SCM, recently returned from Ops in Afghanistan, took up the baton with a similar no-nonsense style of leadership. This year the Squadron Ofﬁcers performed well in the Melton Race. Capt Mann was the ﬁrst Household Cavalry Ofﬁcer across the ﬁnish line and the Sqn Ldr was the second Ofﬁcer to ﬁnish. (Unusually this year we were the only two Household Cavalry Ofﬁcers to complete the race.) Thanks and praise goes out to the illustrious Capt Morley and the hard working team of soldiers
from across the Regiment who served in the Winter Training Troop. The beginning of the year saw the horses return from grass, the Commanding Ofﬁcer’s horse inspection, and after weeks of Tp and Sqn Drills we found ourselves preparing for The Royal Wedding which was to be the event of the decade. In addition to the already punishing schedules, the Richmond Cup still took place and this competition is not for the faint hearted. This year the hard work and effort paid off, and victory was all so sweet as the Sqn practically swept the board, taking ﬁrst, third, fourth and ﬁfth place. Tpr Cox was named Richmond Cup winner and received his award from Her Majesty The Queen during the Royal Windsor Horse Show. Tpr John became a household name across the USA for
LCpl Davison cleaning up for the Royal Wedding
42 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
being the one American taking part in the Royal Wedding. Tpr Barker spoke particularly well during one television interview with ITN, he reﬂected the articulate nature and professionalism of the Household Cavalry Trooper, in what was a truly commendable performance. There was a monumental effort, to the point of exhaustion, put into the media campaign choreographed perfectly by Capt Hulme the Press Ofﬁcer. The day itself went by incredibly fast but the atmosphere was electric, the honour was placed upon SCM Ireland, who carried The Blues and Royal Standard covered by SQMC Bonham. The QLG commanded by Capt Lin was turned out with a Squadron Standard carried by the Master Saddler. There was a magniﬁcent display of heroism and quick thinking when Tpr Baker’s
LCpl Abbot as Connecting File in The Mall leading the Royal Wedding Procession
The Sqn Ldr on Empress on the Major General’s Inspection
horse Jeremiah fell over in Parliament Square as they left the Abbey, and after being brieﬂy dragged by his horse due to his foot being stuck in the stirrups, he was quick-witted enough to roll away, jumping to his feet and seamlessly becoming a street-liner carrying both his sword and plume immaculately as the carriage passed by. The horse, brieﬂy held by a Sgt Maj with the street-liners, then broke away cantering past the carriage and into the northerly mounted sentry box at Horse Guards where he remained caught by the boxman until quietly removed to the stables. This incredible performance has been captured forever on YouTube, and Tpr Baker received a thank you card from The Duke of Cambridge for his efforts. In true style we bounced from The Royal Wedding to The Queen’s Birthday parade where we took a back seat as it was a LG Standard and the parade was a great success and passed without incident. The season came to an end with the Garter Service which was the ﬁrst major parade that our newest Tp Ldr HRH Ct Bolkiah took part in, commanding his division of The Blues and Royals. Even with our demanding schedule we have still managed to conduct other activities and courses. CoH McGuire and Privett trained the HCMR boxing team in a match against HCR hosted in Windsor and the boys fought like Spartans in a wonderful display of courage, determination and sportsmanship. The chosen men were Tprs O’Mahoney, Abbot, Gates, Garrick, Matakibau and Marriott 39 who was awarded the best bout of the night. CoH Hartshorne went on the
All Arms Drill Instructors Course; CoH Queen attended the LFTT Course; LCpl Barbour attended SCBC and LCoH Collinson destroyed the competition at the Recce Crew Commanders Course, coming top of the class. The next major event was Regimental Training in sunny Bodney. The Sqn took part in some truly challenging and equally enjoyable equitation training under the excellent tuition of the Riding Staff and newly promoted LCpls Glendenning, Haymonds and Joyce joined us fresh from the arduous AMEC held in Melton Mowbray. The open weekend saw the culmination of much of the training and competitions and the Sqn was once again well represented. Sadly the SCM and the Sqn Ldr missed out on winning the Senior Handy Hunter by a split second to the LG Ldr and SCM pairing. The ﬁnal phase of Regimental Training was the Dismounted Skills Competition. There were lessons on Close Air Support (CoH Horton), a defensive shoot (CoH Queen), bayonet lane (CoH Game) which was an eye opener for many of the troopers. SQMC Bonham lead the explosive method of entry stand assisted by CoH Francis, who covered Operations in Built Up Areas (OBUA), which gave the troopers the unique opportunity to conduct these skills in an OBUA Village, under pressure and in a real time scenario. The Directing Staff allocated simulated casualties as the assaulting multiples progressed through the buildings stressing the difﬁculties of operating in a Close Quarter Battle environment.
the week before (which was more like Special Duties Selection) paid dividends, as it conditioned the boys for the pain that was to come. Every Tp performed with incredible spirit and determination and outmatched the opposition. There was an amazing sense of achievement as the exercise had both reminded and revised a broad range of dismounted skills, and our troopers have become stronger and more mentally robust, junior commanders have gained more conﬁdence in their ability to lead under pressure and against the odds. Special mention goes to the SCM who ﬂew across the area on a quad bike like he was herding cats, bouncing between stands and ensuring people kept to the timings. Regimental Training was not without some respite as we manage the annual visit to Holkham Beach to swim the horses, some of whom were more easily persuaded than others. Sadly the weather was more akin to Brecon than Bali but the Sqn braved the elements and took to the water. Being Foreign and Commonwealth I felt it was best to stay away from the sea as I didn’t want the men to see me going ‘man down’! A night at the dogs and a BBQ was complemented with Tp sketches, which resembled the auditions for ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. There were some good acts and some really shocking efforts; a few troopers were strongly advised not to give up their day jobs: though Tpr Barker was very impressive with a solo effort on his electric guitar followed by a duet with Tpr (MC) Gates, who’s now legendary Beat Boxing routine brought the ‘2 can crowd’ to their feet.
The most physically challenging part was the extraction march that became a stretcher race. The Sqn’s combat PT
After summer leave and with the return of grass horses, before we knew it we were preparing for the Cavalry Fizz, The
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 43
Capt SS Lukas bringing his Division round on the Queen’s Birthday Parade
Lord Mayor’s Show, The Cenotaph and the Turkish State Visit, in the words of the fair ground ride operator “the louder you scream the faster we go!” Working in Knightsbridge is fast and furious and it never stops, only the bravest survive and with the much needed support of their wives, husbands, partners, girlfriends and friends of the regiment, whom we cannot thank enough. The unsung heroes have been our dedicated and long serving civilian grooms Donna, Karen and Iris: your corporate memory is the lifeblood of the Sqn and your assistance is unquantiﬁable. Some of the most dedicated help came from the Support (Civilian) Riders who have aided the Sqn tirelessly, all for the love of horses, cascading their equine and life experience, not to mention the countless treats, drinks and nights out. Lastly to the Sqn: Troopers who
CoH Scholes with the Union Flag at the British Military Tournament
committed themselves to the point of exhaustion endured hardships and working conditions mere mortals couldn’t fathom, completing a working week that would make a junior doctor gasp; you are the greatest and nobody, absolutely nobody does it better! For the Junior NCOs life was never easy, bouncing from QLG, the Dog (Ed note: Orderly Corporal) and then some crazy fast ball Community Engagement task care of the Sqn Ldr; remember Gentlemen, you are the future of our regiment therefore standards, commitment and constant professionalism must become your mantra. To the CoHs, all to a man bright, dedicated and hard working; you gentlemen are the rocks upon which to this Sqn was built. SQMC and your dedicated support staff, you kept our ship aﬂoat, managing a Kalamazoo from hell and always producing the
correct numbers and equipment, making sure the Sqn never went without. The charismatic and inspiring Ofﬁcers who I had the pleasure to serve with; as a band of brothers you never failed to amaze me, both at work and also on the “PopPop”. The SCM was the heart and lungs of the Sqn; the consummate professional and perfect soldier, a man of honour, you were never afraid to speak your mind and did all you could for the boys; thank you for all your support and advice. Commanding the Sqn over the last two years has been a privilege and the highlight of my life to date and I have shared in experiences that will probably never be equalled. Gentlemen of the Blues and Royals Mounted Squadron it has been a pleasure, thank you all so much.
Members of HQ and HCMR with the police on the bike safe day
Q Sqn started the New Year, having returned from a split Christmas break, immediately assisting the Regiment in preparing for the numerous inspections that take place prior to the start of the Ceremonial
HQ Sqn Ldr with Harris Hawk at Regimental Training
Season. Most went off without a hitch. Everyone nominated let out a deep breath having been missed for the phase one redundancies. Mounted Drill rehearsals started in late March, under the hawk like gaze of the Riding Master
44 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
Capt Mark Avision and his Staff, ready for the Major General’s Parade in April. As always most of HQ was involved with this from the Provost CoH, CoH Mowatt, providing the security and lance markers comprising anyone
we all arrived at the right time and place. While at Bodney HQ Sqn went en masse ‘to the dogs’ at Great Yarmouth where at the end of the night everyone was up. In the various equine competitions members of HQ Sqn managed to cover themselves with glory. FLCoH Stanford won the Junior Ranks show jumping, SCpls Grifﬁths, Broom and CoH Scholes won the International relay class. The return to HPB was uneventful but efﬁcient, probably because we started our split summer leave and we had sent some horses to grass prior to returning home.
LCoH Capp Mil Skills
the SCM could get his hands on to ﬁll various positions both on horse and on foot. The RAO’s department as always took over the camp barrack guard. No sooner had we completed the Major Generals Parade than we started preparing for the Royal Wedding. The barracks suddenly became awash with International and National press wishing to report on how preparations were going, and at times the barracks felt like a TV studio. As always we ﬁlled various gaps in the mounted Divisions for this special parade with CoH Young and LCoH O’Carroll to name a few. Then, juxtaposing beginnings and endings, S/Cpl Hadden was in his element in May as his small team of men acted as VIP drivers at the Royal Windsor Horse Show, while Tpr Tingle completed his Junior Career Cadre Course at Bovington. The Queens Birthday Parade and Garter Service came and went with the FMaj WO2 Freeman completing his ﬁnal QBP as Farrier cover accompanied by CoH Howell making sure he manned up throughout! The QBP was quickly followed by MATT’s training assisted by CsoH Hessian and Francis running the ranges, CBRN and First Aid stands. In July the advance party moved to Bodney Camp in Norfolk, to set up for the Regiment’s arrival. MT supported the move with CoH Frampton and LCoH Grifﬁths loosing sleep ensuring
During September and October the Sqn was thin on the ground, while career courses were undertaken and departments went off to take part in different forms of adventure training from walking Hadrian’s Wall to trekking in the Lakes and Wales. In November CoH Keep, Pte Cowans and Tpr Darcy supported the Remembrance Day Poppy appeal with assistance from local businesses and retired service personnel. We collected money from Knightsbridge tube station commuters raising £3,000, which was part of the whopping £4.3m taken on
the day across London. Throughout the month our new RAPTC Instructor Sgt Francis has been improving our ﬁtness with training programmes for the AFT, PFT2 and his latest challenge the Military Swimming Test. In the last week before Christmas leave we had a Carol Service with mince pies and mulled wine, set up by SCpls Adams, Preston, CoH Wyard and the staff from the two messes, followed by an onerous week including the Troopers’ lunch, QM’s drinks, a VIP visit, and Brick Hanging. We have said farewell to the following: Maj Mark Kitching, SCpls Hadden MBE and Bestwick, CsoH Costain, Mowatt and McThune, SSgt Clark, LCoH Jones, and Tprs Edwards, Wilson and Gray. The Sqn’s sporting achievements are: the Sqn Ldr and QM represented the Army in the Combined Services Martial Arts Championships; the Adjutant took a team to run in various competitions, who following a 2nd place gained selection for the Army competition, even after being sent two miles off course to everyone else; FS/Cpl Sherlock won Silver in the Army Power Lifting Championships lifting a huge 190kg in the dead lift. Finally we would like to congratulate the following who have recent welcomed new members to their families: CoH & Mrs Mowatt and Thalia; FLCoH & Mrs Howell and Garinhyr; LCoH & Mrs Scollick and Shaun; FLCoH & Mrs Tingly and Christian; LCoH & Mrs Boswell and Max; LCoH Grifﬁths and Katie-Rose; FLCpl & Mrs Bliss and Grace; FLCpl & Mrs Hansen and Oliver; Tpr & Mrs Munos Hermosa and Dominic.
Forge and Riding Staff at ﬁnish point
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 45
“Half way up” L-R: SCpl Adams, LCoH O’Carroll, CoH Francis, Capt Stewart (QM), LCpl Holland, CoH Beaumont, LCpl Henderson
oesn’t time ﬂy; it only seemed a minute ago that I assumed the QM post here at HCMR. What can I say that hasn’t been said by my predecessors “Stores are for storing” or “this has been the busiest year in the QM’s department yet”. Well, it certainly has been busy but when is it not. Just when you think that you are on top of things then in comes a ‘curve ball’. The obvious stand out event of the year was the Royal Wedding; this gave us a few challenges some of which came in as curve balls. That said the regiment and all other parties made it out of the gate correctly dressed for the occasion. A particular mention goes to CoH Beaumont in the Full Dress Store who pulled out all the stops; not forgetting that a number of the department were actually on parade too. The long awaited works have now been completed on the stables roof and therefore we should have a dry winter in the stables. Peninsular Tower work continues and has been a talking point for many with the blue-red-blue netting
At the top “We made it” L-R: SCpl Adams, CoH Francis, CoH Beaumont, LCpl Henderson, LCpl Brown, LCpl Holland, LCoH O’Carroll
around the scaffolding. Who is going to occupy the ﬂats once the works have been completed is still not known. The Multi-Gym has been refurbished with complete new equipment; the Troopers welfare room has been overhauled with new gaming equipment, and Sky television reception, and a new garden area with decking. The department put a lot of work into this, and particular mention goes to RQMC Fry and CoH Keep who may consider going into business together. Sky TV is being plumbed in to all single living-in accommodation to enable occupants to take out subscriptions if they so wish. Washing machines and tumble-driers have been ﬁtted in all of the ablution rooms in the accommodation block and all single beds have been exchanged for a larger frame and sprung mattress. These are all towards improving the quality of life for the single soldiers in the barracks The Dept was lucky to have a few days of adventure training in the Lakes – as illustrated in the Photographs, and as you can see the weather can change very quickly.
“Man over board” in the Coniston Lake The QM, LCpl Holland, LCoH O’Carroll & LCpl Henderson
Further entertainment took place on Coniston Lake. The canoe race “The last one back gets the coffees in” got a little rough, with all 4 getting wet. The QM & LCpl Holland won! We have now said a sad farewell to SCpl “Haddy” Hadden (aka – The Mayor of Watton). Haddy has been the Foragemaster for 15 years. He was a key player in many of the tasks carried out by the Regiment, not least Summer Camp (Regimental Training) up at sunny Norfolk where he pretty much ran the show. We have now welcomed SCpl Adams who will hopefully have a long and successful time in the department too. We have also said farewell to CoH “Cossie” Costain. Both have been stalwarts in the G4 chain both here and at Windsor and are wished all the best for the future. We look forward to next year’s challenge of ensuring that the Regiment is equipped for the Queens Diamond Jubilee, and whatever the Olympics may bring.
On dry land - The QM, LCpl Holland, LCpl Henderson & LCoH O’Carroll with instructors
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 47
The QMs Dept at Summer Camp, saying “farewell” to C/Maj Hadden & CoH Costain L-R: LCpl Holland, SCpl Hadden, CoH Keep, LCoH O’Carroll, LCpl Henderson, Tpr Wincott, SCPL Adams, CoH Beaumont, LCoH Carey, CoH Costain, RQMC Fry, Pte Roberts, Tpr Akorli, SSgt Clark, CoH Holiday, SCpl Peet
by FMaj Freeman RHG/D
fter the New Year’s leave period work in the Forge began very steadily, FLCoH Partridge and FLCoH Tingley went to the Army School of Farriery (ASF) at the Defence Animal Centre (DAC) to begin the Intermediate Military Farrier’s course (IMFC). FLCoH Stanford and FLCpl Dailly returned from four and two weeks respectively in Oman with the Musical Ride – the RVO, Maj O’Flynn, wondered how she had just managed five days but said it was worth it for the Business Class flights. The Regiment had its usual Full Dress inspections with the Forge turning themselves out to the usual high standard – FLCoH McCabe won the virtual crown as the smartest farrier in the Forge.
February saw the arrival of a new Veterinary Technician, LSgt Handley RAVC, to the team. Meanwhile, the qualified members of the Forge were shaking off the dust from their tools and practicing for the upcoming ‘Cavalry Pairs’ shoeing competition, held as usual at Hyde Park Barracks. This popular competition welcomes both Army and civilian farriers from around the UK, and provides a chance to test their skills in traditional ‘roadstertype’ shoeing. FCoH Woods organised a slick day of showing and managed to entice along a few commercial sponsors to provide a little colour and good background activity to the day. The competition was highly competitive with 40 qualified farriers
Farrier Major and FCoH Howell Queen’s Birthday Parade
48 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
testing their skill and determination. Congratulations went to the winning civilian pair, Mr A Casserley and Mr B Casserley, but hot on their heels were WO2 Freeman and FSCpl Sherlock for winning the ‘Best Military Pair’. There was also a prize for the most improved apprentice Farrier, this was in the form of a bronze medal presented by the Master of the Worshipful Company of Farriers and this year it went to FLCpl Dailly. The Forge also ran the potential Farriers’ assessment with eight potential candidates competing for three available places in the Forge, the assessment was ran over a one-week period and ended with a testing theory and practical test. LCpl Bliss LG, Tpr Dunn and Tpr Munoz-Hermosa both RHG/D were the
FLCoH Partridge, LCpl Dailly, WO2 Freeman & FLCoH Tingely
The Forge meets James Blunt
successful candidates. The main horse herd return from grass led to an industrious few days as 90 horses were shod, ready to start their build-up programme for the forthcoming ceremonial season. The Regiment was given a week’s early Easter leave in March before the busy ceremonial season started, there being no space to draw breath between then and the Birthday Parade. April saw the regiment rehearsing earnestly for the Major General’s parade, which was without mishap, and with the Veterinary Ofﬁcer, Major O’Flynn, looking very pleased after surviving her ﬁrst ever mounted ceremonial parade, despite losing both her stirrups on the warmup trot. She admitted afterwards that she had a new found respect for those riding in jackboots every day. On to the highly anticipated Royal Wedding where FLCoH McCabe LG and FLCoH Scott RHG/D rode elegantly as the Farriers and FLCpl Dailly LG and FLCpl Hansen RHG/D rode proudly in the Sabre Divisions. After the wedding, the Forge were set the task of re-shoeing all the horses that took part in the Royal Wedding parade as soon as possible. Owing to the unique occasion these horseshoes were now highly desirable, and after some savvy negotiations, they were handed over to the Dailly Mail in return for a generous donation to the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund. The shoes had to be removed, cleaned, stamped with the Regimental cipher and the date of the Royal Wedding. They were then all individually labelled and boxed up ready to be collected, a task that the Forge completed alongside their usual work in less than ﬁve weeks. For some, the end couldn’t come soon enough. May saw the return of FLCsoH Partridge and Tingley, after successfully completing their intermediate training at the Army School of Farriery at Melton Mowbray, just in time for the ﬁrst re-
WO2 Freeman & FSCpl Sherlock. Attack dog training
hearsal of the QBP, although they were less than impressed. The Forge also provided veterinary cover for the Beating the Retreat concerts - the late nights were beginning to take their toll by now though - and the Vet had to keep the team awake with ever growing bags of sweets. The QBP took place in June with the Farrier Major, WO2 Freeman, riding on his last ever parade, looking resplendent in front of his proud family; a ﬁtting end to a busy and memorable summer season. As the Regiment drew breath after the silly season, with all individual mandatory Army training completed, at Regimental Training the Forge working at its normal high standard. The Vet treated the Team to an evening out at Newmarket races; with that amount of high-class horsey knowledge descending on the race-course, SCpl Sherlock was sure the bookies were in for a shock. The shock was, in fact, how fast the Forge lost all its money. The evening was ﬁnished off in great style by watching James Blunt in the latest ‘Newmarket Nights’ concert. FLCpl Hansen used his scouse charm to get everyone back stage to meet the former Life Guard, which was a memorable end to a great night, although LSgt Handley, the Vet Tech, had to be restrained from her over-enthusiastic grasp of the goodlooking singer. The equitation skills at camp rose to their usual standard this year with FLCoH Stanford winning the LG Junior Ranks show jumping and the Regimental Grand Prix competition, and LSgt Handley coming 3rd in RHG/D Sqn show-jumping and 5th in the Junior Ranks Handy Hunter. The RVO showed the team how not to do it, by being permanently separated from her horse after three jumps in the Ofﬁcers’ show-jumping class. Better luck next year, Ma’am! October and November saw a hive of activity with horses returning from grass, and preparation for the Lord Mayor’s Show. On the State Visit of
the President of the Republic of Turkey LCpl Bliss and Tpr Dunn rode for the ﬁrst time as Farriers. As the year drew to a close, horseshoes were removed for those being turned out again and we waved their wearers good bye for the Christmas period. The Forge was kept busy throughout the year with a few extra-curricular activities. Competing in the Household Division (HDiv) Tug of War event, where the team came a credible 2nd overall, beaten only by the sheer size and bulk of the Irish Guards. A couple of cultural trips to the National Army Museum and other educational seminars kept up outside interests. When Adventure Training fever hit FCoH Howell followed his historical interests and completed a long-held ambition to walk Hadrian’s Wall, joining the with the Saddler’s Shop, but was the only member of the group to get frost bite : FLCoH Tingley, and Tprs Munoz-Hermosa and Dunn sailed in to the sunset around the Isle of Scilly on the ‘Gladeye’. They returned green-faced and walking with a strange gait - ‘who said going away with FLCoH Tingley wouldn’t be fun’? As the RVO encouraged everyone to widen their AT ambitions there was talk of kayaking, sky-diving, SCUBA diving and Carribean sailing trips being banded around the group – but that’s next year. During the year a fond farewell was said to FCoH McThune after 22 years’ faithful service to the RHG/D. It was good to see the hard work of FLCsoH Partridge, Tingley and Scott (relinquishing the title of longest-serving apprentice) rewarded as they were congratulated on passing their Intermediate Military Farriers Course and FCsoH Thomas and McCabe reached the admirably heady heights of passing the Advanced Military Farrier’s course and promotion. We look forward to next year, as long as there aren’t another 800 horse shoes to label, stamp, clean and polish.
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 49
Regimental Administration Ofﬁce
midst the doom and gloom of the most stringent public sector cuts of recent years including the introduction of compulsory redundancies for the ﬁrst time since the late 80’s the Staff and Personnel Support (SPS) Detachment of HCMR have had an interesting year. The tiny Det of the RAO plus 11 OR’s has packed an enormous amount into the calendar mainly due to the hectic ceremonial year in addition to the increase in charitable activity the Regiment has undertaken. 2011 has been a whirlwind of supporting the myriad of Regimental commitments including the Royal Wedding with staff assisting with planning, security, controlling functions and even setting up a printing press to reproduce thousands of programmes. In total through normal work, pressure on suppliers, self-help and fundraising the Det has contributed to saving the Regiment, its personnel and its charities in excess of £20,000. On top of that the Armed Forces Pay Review Body was hosted as was the Detachment Commanders Course from Worthy Down. Personnel were detached to assist the Joint Service Mountain Training Centre and two units within LONDIST whilst the Directorate of Staff and Personnel Support (DSPS(A))
A small Band of determined men – the RAO Det at the ranges
visited twice gathering information about unit procedures. On the sporting side LSgt Sessing represented the Regiment at the HCMR/HCR boxing match winning Best Runner Up with the rest of the Det completing its annual oversees AT package in Denmark. During the period we have said goodbye to the RAWO Q Draper and the SSA Sgt Walker with WO2 John Price and Sgt Al Hood incoming. We have also welcomed Pte Cowans, Pte Haigh and
The RAO Det canoeing
Pte Lee. 2012 will be as busy if not busier than 2011 with the Olympics and the Diamond Jubilee highlights in an already full programme. Whatever the challenges the Det will continue to strive forward hoping errors are minimal, fun is optimal and most importantly the Regiment receives the best support possible.
LSgt Sessing receiving his trophy from Lt Col JP Eyre
The Band of The Life Guards by Lance Corporal Sinclair
ince our last entry in the Journal, life has continued in the usual busy manner with the majority of our work being in the form of state ceremonial duties for London District. 2010 ended very much on a high for the band with a superb trip to South Korea to mark the 60th anniversary of the end of the Korean War. There was a great deal of uncertainty as to whether the trip would actually go ahead and it was only at the eleventh hour that the contracts were
signed and the wheels could be set in motion. We set off on 23rd September for an eleven hour ﬂight to Seoul Incheon Airport, followed by a three hour bus journey to our accommodation at the Hongik University campus. A small number of the Band were to be involved in a massed bands concert in Seoul city centre a few days later to commemorate the recapture of Seoul. Those not involved with this concert were presented with an ideal opportunity to
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explore Seoul and everyone seemed to enjoy having the chance to see a city that they may never otherwise have ever experienced. We soon got on with the real purpose of the visit and the remainder of the trip was much busier with tattoo performances and marching displays. Towards the end of the visit the band was honoured to perform a concert at the British Embassy in Seoul for the
Ambassador and his wife. We were superbly looked after with afternoon tea in the garden during the interval. The prospect of tea and scones caused an inordinate level of excitement within the Band as for the past two weeks we had been craving some food that we recognised. I think the majority of the Band would be happy not to see spiced cabbage and rice for a very long time. We must take this opportunity to extend our thanks to LCpl May from the RHG/D Band and WO2 Howe formerly RHG/D Band BCM who helped us out with some instrumental vacancies, and also to CoH Stay and LCpl Foran who accompanied us as Dismounted Dutymen. Following our return from South Korea we were immediately thrust back into the usual round of duties and rehearsals. Obviously with Remembrance fast approaching much of our time was taken up with rehearsals for this ever important time. The trumpet team were preparing to be in the limelight once again as it was our turn to play at the Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall under the direction of Trumpet Major West. This is a very high proﬁle engagement and a tremendous honour for all those involved. From this point onwards things rarely quieten down for the trumpet team as immediately following Remembrance the Banquet season is in full swing with regular engagements at Mansion House and The Guildhall. Towards the end of the year rumours of a possible fanfare engagement in Nigeria became a reality and we were able to send a team of seven trumpeters to accompany a Christmas carol service in the Cathedral Church of Christ in Lagos. This was a superb trip and the musicians were accommodated in self contained ﬂats courtesy of the Church community in Lagos. It was an incredible experience in many ways but also truly humbling to see the abject poverty so prevalent throughout so much of Nigerian society. We were pleased that our presence at the service could make such a difference to the enjoyment of the congregation and it added a splash of colour to an already vibrant atmosphere. Following a characteristically busy Christmas period we eased into the New Year with a two week stint at The Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall. Immediately after this it was our turn once again to provide musical support to British Forces Germany. There was no requirement for a full band so the brass quintet spent ﬁve weeks based at JHQ in Rheindahlen. This involved extensive travel throughout northern Germany
The Band in all their glory!
to provide dinner entertainment for a number of different units. Although this type of work can become tedious, the members of the quintet were keen to push their boundaries and raise the musical standards of the ensemble by playing ever more challenging music. This allowed a huge increase in repertoire and ensured a much greater level of individual musical satisfaction. As we moved into April Hyde Park Barracks became the centre of what can only be described as media frenzy concerning the forthcoming wedding of Prince William of Wales and Catherine Middleton. It had been decided that four State Trumpeters from each band would be picked to make up the team of eight that was to herald the arrival of Her Majesty The Queen to Westminster Abbey on the day of the wedding. Understandably there was a great deal of competition to be one of those involved and ﬁnally the Trumpet Major made his selection of SCpl Wheeler, LCpl Sills and LCpl Sinclair. There followed an intense day of interviews for the trumpeters, by both British and international press, of which the Trumpet Major kindly bore the brunt. Perks of the job some may say! The majority of questions were concerned with what our role was to be, what fanfare we would be playing and how much rehearsal we had done. Unfortunately after the rehearsals in the Abbey it was decided that there was only room for a team of six so very graciously and I’m sure with a heavy heart SCpl Wheeler stepped down. Even with the reduced numbers it was something of a squeeze getting into the playing position and this lack of space was exacerbated by the presence of a number of cameramen all vying for the best shot of the bride as she walked down the aisle. For those who played on the day this was one of those occasions that will be forever treasured. Needless
to say, we did wait to catch a glimpse of the future Duchess of Cambridge before discreetly making our exit. After the excitement of the Royal Wedding had subsided, it was very much business as usual for the Band with the onset of another mounted season. This was to be the last Queen’s Birthday Parade in the saddle for the Director of Music Capt Kevin Davies who was moving on to take up a position at Kneller Hall on promotion to Major. Capt Davies spent four years with the band and thoroughly enjoyed his time here. We wish him all the very best for the future. Replacing him is Capt Paul Wilman who, after a spell as Director of Music of the Band of The Royal Regiment of Scotland and a post on the staff at Kneller Hall, has returned to the Band where he started his career as a musician. The Band looks forward to working with him and is excited by The Bandmaster WO1 Freeborn on her Passing Out Parade at Hyde Park Barracks
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the musical enthusiasm he exudes. The mounted season was as always carried out with professionalism and panache by the mounted bands of the Household Cavalry. Special mention must go to LCpl Ruffer who performed superbly as the Sovereign’s Trumpeter. His playing was ﬂawless week after week in rehearsal and on the day itself he was, if possible, even better, combined with some accomplished cantering into position. It is a role that requires supreme conﬁdence and if there were any nerves present they certainly didn’t show. LCpl Ruffer appeared to enjoy the experience and conﬁded afterwards that his real concern was that the BBC commentator got his name right. Following some much appreciated summer leave the media spotlight was once again to be shone on Hyde Park Barracks with the arrival of the Band’s
ﬁrst ever female Bandmaster WO1 Esther Freeborn who passed out of riding school in September. With there being a number of female Bandmasters in Army bands now it was only a matter of time before one of them was posted to a Household Cavalry band and due to the traditional nature of the two Regiments the media interest was inevitable. The Band is looking forward to working with WO1 Freeborn and hope that she enjoys all the unique experiences that a mounted band has to offer. She replaces WO1 Collis-Smith who achieved promotion to Captain and has been appointed Director of Music of The Band of The Royal Regiment of Scotland. He had an enjoyable ﬁve years with the band and has done an excellent job of recruiting new players. His connections within youth music, particularly in the Wiltshire area, have provided us with a steady stream of interested individuals and a number of
committed recruits. We wish him and his family well for the future. Despite recent uncertainties within the Corps of Army Music concerning the potential restructuring of Army Music and as a result a decrease in promotion opportunities, the Band is fortunate to have a number of people being promoted, and we congratulate: LCoH D’Arcy to CoH, LCpl Williams to LCoH, and Musns Sandford and Lamb to LCpl. The Band is also sorry to say goodbye to LCoH Rockey who leaves us in January to take up a post with the Corps of Army Music recruiting team at Kneller Hall. As this goes to press the Band is beginning preparations for the Lord Mayor’s Parade and with Remembrance and a SSAFA concert on the horizon I’m sure the end of the year promises to be as busy and fulﬁlling as the past ten months.
Household Cavalry Training Wing
ith Capt Payne in his second year as OIC Household Cavalry Training Wing (HCTW), seven rides have been through the portals on their phase 3 riding course, not without the thrills and spills of the great cavalry horse bringing people back to reality, regardless of rank. Lt Fitzroy led the way falling off in front of the Commanding Ofﬁcer on his pass out parade just after we commented it was Thomas, a push button horse! The steady ﬂow of trainees has continued to rumble through HCTW in Windsor, and as the trainee numbers were swollen after HCR’s return from Op HERRICK last year, and the success of Relief of Kimberley ride, it was mirrored with D Sqn this year after they returned from Afghanistan earlier in the year. However, they don’t seem to be so sturdy; Capt Richardson left the course after being diagnosed as allergic to horses and others are just breaking. WO1 Freeborn must get a mention as the ﬁrst female Bandmaster for The Life Guards Band, but I am sure there will be a special edition on their page if not
LCoH Ackerman liking the sound of his own voice taking Warburg through their Cavalry Drill course
on Facebook. Finally, it was agreed that Tpr Duffy could attend the Army Swimming Championships at Aldershot straight after he passed out of phase 2. He won every competition he was entered for, but when it came to riding he used the Manège ﬂoor as a swimming pool without much luck and broke his wrist when he fell off for the ﬁrst time. CoH Burton must be praised for his efforts throughout the year, and LCoH Ackerman, as our drill instructor, has found the beneﬁt of the CoH mentoring him over the three weeks of drill. The order of dress has slowly progressed to DRO for the pass out parade. The current cleaning facilities were updated in Mar 11 under the close eye of SQMC Gerrard. Training aids for the students have been greatly improved, such as information boards, display horse, books and equipment guides, which make life easier for the young sol-
Captain Des Payne LG on his real horse power after QBP (It’s the only thing he hasn’t fallen off this year!)
diers going through this intense course.
Yet again this year the majority of the training staff have turned over with WO2 Hughes moving on to another extremely important job as a Personal Recovery Ofﬁcer for London District dealing with our wounded, injured and sick soldiers. CoH Amos ﬁnishing his career after 22 years and we all wish him and his family well for his future; and the same goes to LCoH Goodsman leaving the service. LCoH Bassett was posted to Croydon recruiting centre on promotion to CoH, and LCoH Logan was posted back to HCR. WO2 Newell was posted in as the SCM, and LCsoH Lorey, Raiwale, Hall, Barber and Ackerman in as ride NCOs. By the time this is published LCoH Lorey will be in MT as the 2IC and LCoH Ackerman off to Bovington as a Lt Col D E Hughes RHG/D presenting Tpr Gillham Phase 2 instructor and LCoH RaiLG the Best Student Trophy from Tangiers Ride wale to HCR.
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Coach Troop by CoH D Kendle
his year, 2011 has been a busy one. Coach Troop has had the usual club meets, drives and regimental drills plus a charity drive raising money for ‘Help for Heroes’ and ‘The Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund’. The Royal Windsor Horse Show is always the ﬁrst big show of the year; we managed again to do very well with a *missing word?* in class and a respectable Reserve Champion over all. At Suffolk in June we took 1st prize and won the championship, with which I was extremely pleased. The grooms just looked at me, wondering why I was beaming for once, not realising how long we had been chasing this accolade and a ﬁrst for the Regiment. The two new young leaders that we have been training over the last year, Zorro and Zander, have made a big change to the team overall and were instrumental in our taking a 2nd at the Newbury show, so a real achievement this year. We had a good Royal Ascot in June. Years ago there would have been well over thirty coaches that drove the twenty miles return trip each day, but now we are down to only eight. This is a real test for the horses and equipment, but it is certainly the most stylish way to arrive for a day’s racing! Having the other Coaching teams stabled at the Training wing in Windsor can occasionally be a problem but all went well this year, and watching the other teams leave the Barracks is a great spectacle. I know how grateful the Coaching Club and their guests are to the Regiment for this. One of the main highlights this year was the charity drive named the “Castles Tour” driving over 120 miles from Windsor Castle to Warwick Castle.
The Household Cavalry winning team at the Suffolk show
Using part of the route used by the original stage coaches of yesteryear, the coaches stopped at historically important coaching inns along the way, notably Henley-on-Thames and Dorchester. We were invited to participate by Mr John Brown using his road coach ‘The Nimrod’. Two teams of horses were used - John’s own team for most of the way alternating with the regimental team, and the driving was shared between myself and John. We were aided by Tpr Smith on the coach and Tpr Shaw who drove a support vehicle. We were accompanied by another road coach, ‘The Monarch’ owned by Mr Rod Stockton. I would
like to extend a big thank you to John and his wife Pebs Brown for asking us to join them and sponsoring the team, and to all the other members of the team that helped organize the tour for such a good cause which is close to our hearts. The biggest problem we have had this year was the closure of the coach house, which needs a new roof. Unfortunately this has meant the Regimental Coach stands in an empty yard - not the most conducive conditions for keeping a 150 year old vehicle on the road. It is hoped that this situation will change for the better soon.
by Captain M A Avison, The Life Guards At the end of 2010 as the Regiment looked forward to the New Year we learned the full extent of our commitment to the British Military Tournament (BMT). This turned out to be a challenge for all members of the Regiment and the Riding Staff as this brought a number of concurrent and consecutive tasks - Earls Court, Olympia and Muscat in Oman within a six week period. The Musical Ride was once again the main attraction at the BMT until members of the Blue Maﬁa were asked to demonstrate their jumping skills down a jumping lane; it was on the ﬁnal performance when Baxter Bear and WO2 Hackman made a special appearance, with him joining in
with the jumping demonstration. It was also a memorable time at the Olympia Horse Show when The Blues and Royals drum horse Spartacus (Sparky) was given a standing ovation on his retirement; there was not a dry eye in the 8000 audience. It was also a successful show for the Regiment for me as I was fortunate enough to retain the Services Jumping Championships Cup for the second successive year on Lochnagar, while SCpl Grifﬁths on Dreadnought came 3rd. As we entered the New Year a number of new key personnel needed to be brought up to scratch with their equestrian skills for ceremonial duty. This was safely
achieved, with none of these senior (or old?) ofﬁcers disgracing themselves on the Major General’s Inspection, the Royal Wedding or The Queen’s Birthday Parade. From a staff point of view the next key event was the Royal Windsor Horse Show Show Jumping which for the ﬁrst time in many years was won by another team. Even though it was won by the Defence Animal Centre there was consolation that the team consisted of Capt Richard Chambers LG, WO2 Nicholls HCMR and SSgt Wright KTRHA. The HCMR C Team took 3rd place (LCpl`s Evans, Glass and Raffel). With the disappointment of Royal Windsor behind us we then focused on sending a strong
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 53
contingent to the annual four-day Royal Tournament Show Jumping in Melton Mowbray. It started with a number of new riders in the Tentpegging and Skill at Arms taking numerous placing`s and a special congratulations to LCoH Abbott, LCpl Raffel and Tpr`s Marias, Raats and Stokes as they won the team and individual classes; the future looks positive for the Peggers. The Show Jumping classes were ﬁercely contested with some excellent new and old combinations, with LCpl Mancey winning the Services Cup and the Junior Show Master. We had LCpl Raffel riding a new horse called Gustavas who seems to be the all-round horse competing in Tentpegging and Show Jumping. With the old and bold combinations we saw SCpl Grifﬁths riding Dreadnought and CoH Scholes on Dior who both qualiﬁed for the Services Show Jumping Final in Olympia in December. While the Tournament would have been a disappointment for some, modesty forbids, but for me it was a huge success especially as it was my last Royal Tournament; I do believe I may have rewritten the history books by winning The Prince of Wales’s, The King’s, and The Queen’s Cups and the Senior Derby on Lochnagar in which is a military horse. (I even felt guilty)
This led us onto the annual Training Camp in Norfolk; it saw all the usual Inter-Squadron and Regimental competitions, climaxing this year for the ﬁrst time with an Open Weekend. This was broken down into an International and National Day, the ﬁrst day saw International Teams from Sweden and Italy take part in the Individual and Team Show Jumping competitions. Within the classes were teams from the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force, HCMR, KTRHA, DAC, LG and RHG/D. With some impressive riding and combinations the individual winner was the Capt Marco Del-Nevo from Italy and the Army Team retained the Loriners Cup in the Combined Services in which SCpl Broom was a team member. Also during this international day saw a competition between Great Britain and South Africa Merits and Ladies Teams in Tentpegging. These teams were selected from the top riders within the British Tentpegging Association (BTA) in which CoH Powell was selected for the GB Merits. To great effect the World Champions from South Africa demonstrated their skills and professionalism with ease, although CoH Powell did produce two excellent results collecting two silver medals during the day.
Day two was the National Day with the annual competition for members of the Regiment with the Commanding Ofﬁcer Lt Col Hughes winning the Senior Ranks and Tpr Yates the Junior Ranks Show Jumping. We also had the BTA National Championships in which CoH Powell excelled collecting ﬁrst place in the individual pegging, and other placings. During the day we also had LCoH Abbott, LCpl Raffel and Tpr Marias collecting lower placings. Once again, the Riding Staff supported Spruce Meadows, Canada and Culver Military Academy, USA with instructors, we also welcome CsoH Osboune, Scholes and LCoH Tate back to Regimental Duty and we wish CoH Powell, LCsoH Evans and Lacey well on their assignment to the RMA Sandhurst, Paberborn EC and the DAC respectively. The busy year comes to a close and with Olympia just around the corner I would like wish all competitors the best of luck. And by the time journal is published, I will have handed over the reins of Riding Master to Captain Richard Chambers and wish him all the best for the best job within the Mounted Regiment.
Regimental Support Team
by Captain SD McMullen, The Blues and Royals
he Regimental Support Team have had a busy schedule this year travelling the length and breadth of the Country. We have been involved in county shows, tournaments and race days and many visits to school and colleges which has helped to promote the Army as well as the regiment. The duties of the team consist of raising money for the Regiment’s Operational Casualty’s fund, giving the public an understanding about life within the regiment both armoured and mounted and encourage young men to join our historic regiments. The interest in joining the regiment since the Royal Wedding has been phenomenal and as a result the team has seen a huge increase in enquires about join the regiment. This year the team said farewell to Major Paul Core who kindly agreed to stand in for 8 months before taking over as HQ Sqn leader, CoH James to BATUS red top safety team, LCoH Ashford returned to D Sqn after a short period with the team recovering from blast injuries sustained on OP Herrick 13. Tpr “Dinger” Bell sadly decided to leave the regiment to pursue a career as a physical training instructor. The team would like to thank all of them for their hard work and wish them all the best for the future
in what ever they do. The exit of the old guard saw the introduction of some new members to the team Captain Sean McMullen took over as Recruiting Ofﬁcer he was an obvious choice due to his friendly and approachable manner. CoH Dave Ansell joined the team as the troop CoH and quickly got to grips with the running of the team and its role. Trooper Josh Dudley also joined us from B Sqn having just come back from Op Herrick 13, the only member of the team to stay was Tpr Dan Grifﬁn attached from The Life Guards Sqn HCMR, who is eagerly waiting for a posting from the Mounted regiment to HCR. The team started its season of shows with the Royal Windsor horse show and military tattoo at Windsor castle. The show saw a big military presents with many different regiments and corps attending with there recruiting teams. For the HCR it was a good chance for the locals of Windsor to communicate with the soldiers from their Hometown Regiment. For this show the team were provided with a Jackal 2 and was manned by 4 soldiers from the HCR who in the evening’s performance supported the Royal Marines and
54 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
French forces in a Hostage style show piece. During the day the team were inundated with people interested in what the regiment does and the vehicles role on operations. Not for the ﬁrst time this year the team were also supporting the musical ride who were putting on a special performance with the French Cavalry which raised a few eyebrows among the watching public. The team Supported the Mounted regiments annual Summer Camp open day at Bodney camp and for the ﬁrst time saw the regiment open its doors for the whole weekend. It was a good chance to interact with the locals who have supported the regiment for many years, with the Sunday being the busier of the two days; the team was kept busy informing people about role of the HCR as well as the mounted regiment. The team were supported by HCMR’s PRI shop and the Household cavalry museum who gave people the opportunity to try on state ceremonial kit. Horse of the Year show provided us with the biggest show of the year, supporting the Household Cavalry musical ride, the amount of attraction and interest into the Regiment was
remarkable. The show consisted mainly of female, which the team were more than happy with there was still lots of interest in joining the regiment. The musical rides impressive routine in front of thousands of applauding equine fans who seemed to love every minute. The team were also supporting the Operational Casualties Fund and raised over £2000 with the public generously donating their hard earned cash. The recruiting team had long days talking to a variety of people from all walks of life, there were many lads wanting to join but unfortunately having to turn down females but advising them on other regiments/corps of the army.
which will enhance the HCR foot print for the show.
The face of the recruiting is set to change within the Army with the RAC recruiting team folding in March 2012; the future of regimental recruiting teams has yet to be decided. The short term sees the team supporting the British Military tournament at Earls Court, London, where the tri service comes together to perform on front of the public to show off their skills and the latest equipment. The regiment has kindly been supported by the RAC recruiting group and they have secured the loan of a Scimitar 2 and a Jackal 2
This year the team have again been keeping busy supporting the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund, Welfare Fund and Help for Heroes. The Mounted Commons Keepers of Wimbledon Common, the majority of whom are Ex Household Cavalrymen organised an open day which was supported by the team and the HCR. Another well attended fund raising event was a Race Day at Newbury Races for the British Legion Poppy Appeal. The team is fully committed to try and support any organisations that
The team are supporting the Household Cavalry & Royal Armoured Corps Insight Courses. The majority of the course is run in Bovington by SCpl Craig “jock” Crighton with potential recruits visiting the HCMR on a Thursday morning and the HCR in the afternoon. I would like to say a special thanks to Mr John Lloyd (late LG) and all the volunteers from The Household Cavalry Museum Windsor who are always willing to brief all potential recruits on the Regiment’s history and deployments.
are raising funds for the Operational Casualties Fund, Welfare Fund and Help for Heroes. Finally I would like to thank all the Regiments recruiters for their hard work, not only recruiting the potential candidates but for their efforts in retaining their interest, particularly when start dates for initial training are some months away. Without them the Regiment would lose a lot of high quality recruits. The Regimental Support Team is always willing to carry out a display or presentation for recruiting purposes. We will also speak and send out information packs to any individual who is interested in joining the Household Cavalry. We can be contacted by: Telephone: 01753 755213 or 07748 288 611 E-Mail: HCR-RHQ-RecruitingOC@mod.uk Web: www.army.mod.uk/householdcavalry
Household Cavalry Recruiters Major M Norris ACA Bristol, Gloucestershire and Somerset AFCO Bristol 3rd Floor, 4 Colston Avenue Bristol, BS1 4TX Tel 0117 926 2542
WO2 A Lowe Senior Recruiter Stoke 36-38 Old Hall Street Hanley Stoke ST1 3AP Tel: 01782 212 070
WO1 P Henney ACA West London 594 High Road Wembley Middlesex HA0 2AF Tel: 0208 902 1376
SCpl Pickard 3 Saville Place Borough Road Sunderland SR1 1PA Tel: 0191 565 0542
WO1 A P Farmer 20 Great Moor Street Bolton Lancs Tel: 01204 364111
WO2 J Lochrane Senior Recruiter Wigan 2 Baileys Court Hallgate Wigan Lancs, WN1 1LR Tel:01942 243 904
WO1 K Fortune (LSL) Commonwealth Recruiter 453-454 The Strand London WC2R 0RG Tel: 020 7930 8603 WO1 E D Kershaw Rec Ops WO, HQ RG Trenchard Lines Upavon Wiltshire SN9 6BE Tel: 01980 615780
CoH G Bassett ACIO Croydon Sharpeshooter’s House 1 Mitcham Road Croydon CR03 3RU Tel 0208 688 7226
CoH D Bond ACIO Burton-on-Trent 181 Station Road Burton-on-Trent Tel: 01283 568172 CoH L Walker ACIO Slough Queensmere Slough Tel: 01753 553843 CoH C Wharton ACIO Norwich 2 Magdalen Street Norwich NR3 1HX Tel: 01603 624616 CoH S Jury ACIO Oldham 3 Lord Street Oldham OL1 3HB Tel: 0161 627 3233
SCpl L Brown 4 ACP Dalston Tel: 07852452808
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The Royal Wedding – A Soldier’s Viewpoint by Capt T W J Davie LG
he Royal Wedding earlier this year saw soldiers, sailors and airmen deployed onto the streets of London in support of the celebration. What follows is an account of the day itself and the preparations that led up to it from a mounted soldier’s view. The doors to Westminster Abbey opened and the stillness of anticipation exploded into a roar as the crowds who had been gathering for this moment for hours, and in some cases days, got a glimpse of that sight: the newly married Duke and Duchess of Cambridge emerging from the Abbey for the ﬁrst time, on show to the public. If either of them were nervous, they didn’t show it. From where I was sitting, atop my charger Corinthian, waiting in the wings on Victoria I was doing my utmost to hide my nervousness too. The Captain’s Escort for the Duke and Duchess were already on view to the world. For me, sitting, at the head of the 130 horse strong Sovereign’s Escort, the couple looked about the size of wedding cake ﬁgurines but there was nothing ornamental about the noise that echoed down the street where we waited. Ears pricked up throughout each division as our horses looked anxiously in the direction of the roar, as riders tried to remain relaxed in order not to fuel the nervousness of the ‘cavalry blacks’ beneath us. Corinthian, a veteran of such parades seemed to give only a passing notice. Elsewhere younger horses, jumped and bucked and scattered sideways, unsure of the noise, to wry, half-whispered cries of ‘sit deep!’ – the perennial advice of the riding staff on how to deal with such a situation. Unlike those camped out, I hadn’t had to queue for this front-row seat. But this moment had been a long time coming, with preparations stretching back to
The Captain’s Escort enters Parliament Square
March for the celebration. Whilst the nation was enjoying its “4 day weekend” we were a week of leave down and ‘chin-strapped’ from days of practice and rehearsal, most recently, the aptly named Early Morning Rehearsal requiring a reveille of 0200 and carried out in front of nothing but the darkness of London and those self-same people now enjoying the view of the year from opposite the Abbey. The wedding was a Big Deal for the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, both personally and professionally. To some, they were to be attending, or indeed missing, a friend’s wedding. To the rest of us, we were to be at the centre of a media spotlight said to be reaching out to 2 billion people worldwide. A size of audience that concentrates the mind.
The Mounted Regiment were to be deployed at capacity with a Captain’s Escort for the newly married couple and a Sovereign’s Escort for HM The Queen; a total of 212 personnel mounted and dismounted. Hyde Park Barracks was full of horses with every stall occupied. Meanwhile the Regiment was still committed to fulﬁlling the Queen’s Life Guard; this extra was The Escort and The Queen’s carriage leaves Horse Guards Parade preparation
56 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
the Regiment operating in surge mode: battle-hardened ‘three-bars’ tearing their remaining hair out as a horse went lame, or kicked out putting another precious asset off the road. Soldiers pride themselves on ﬂexibility, yet the job of State Ceremonial, by deﬁnition, allows for none, and precision is demanded. A division is made up of 24 horses. It always has been and always will be. Over 350 years ago our regiment was formed for exactly the purpose of escorting the sovereign and with all that history and tradition we weren’t about to become the ﬁrst generation of the Household Cavalry to not get it right on the day. Tensions ran high. The Captain’s Escort moved off with the newly married couple escorted by a detachment of the Blues and Royals – the regiment Prince William commissioned into. The riders of the Sovereign’s Escort urged their horses forward; conﬁdently enough that our horses knew we meant business but being careful not to do anything that might cause an adverse reaction; spurs were kept carefully out of ﬂanks as legs squeezed their cavalry blacks on. There can be few other occasions in life when such trust is placed in an animal. Every soldier knows that in a difﬁcult situation, they’ll be able to trust the man to the left and right. When it comes to horses, it doesn’t matter how much preparation has been put into this moment, that trust can vanish in an equine heartbeat. Outside the Abbey, the Queen boarded
the Gold State Coach, and with swords at the carry we were suddenly off, the carriage picking up speed at a remarkable pace. Her Majesty’s progress in the coach is to remain as smooth and as trouble-free as possible. Unfortunately, the carriage tends to move at quite some speed; ﬁne for those travelling on wheels. For those travelling on legs, four of them at that, the ride is a little bouncy. We set off around Parliament Square, I am struck with a strange thought. “I’m not sure I’ve ever been on the ‘wrong’ side of the barrier before”. Looking back at the crowds looking at me I am given a glimpse into the life of a celebrity or a footballer, standing in the centre of a packed stadium or on a red carpet. The thought vanishes as we enter Whitehall, and I actively remind myself that the Cenotaph is coming up. This is not a day to forget the correct the compliments. “Eyes left’ completed, my Corporal of Horse, today literally my right hand man, gives a cheeky, ‘Well done, sir!” breaking the tension as we slow down to take the slippery corner into Horse Guards and through the arches. I’m conscious of the cameras everywhere, and remember to sit up straight again and ‘carry my plume’ at the correct angle. A moment of calm descends again as the procession slows down behind us. We move up onto the Mall, spreading out and lining up for the iconic photograph, ﬂags ﬂying and waving, the admiralty behind us and Buckingham Palace ahead, at the centre of everything British.
Foot Guards and servicemen from across the armed forces line the Mall, looking impeccably and admirably smart, timeless and ﬂawlessly dressed off. The Foot Guards divisions use my horse as a marker to ‘present arms’ to the following sovereign. Corinthian does well to ignore bayonets being pointed towards his eye every 30 metres. I ﬁnd it harder to ignore, tensing with each call of “PREEEESENT! ARMS!” The Household Cavalry’s role in an escort, though ostensibly ceremonial, still holds a practical security role. The recce soldier in all of us scans the crowd as we ride past, ready to react, hoping to not have to, looking for that man with a starting pistol or tin of paint ready to vault the barrier. Police chatter through my earpiece on one side as hooves clatter in the other. We trot on, without event and into the forecourt at Buckingham Palace, rapidly forming up in order to be in place for the Queen to pass through and into the centre quadrangle. There is just no question of getting this wrong. The serraﬁle captain ﬂicks his plume and we salute in time, holding our swords there as a ﬂeet of 32 vehicles passes, causing cramp and lactic acid to burn in the wrist. Eventually, the vehicles stop passing, and with the escort ﬁnished only an ‘admin move’ back to Hyde Park Barracks remains. The relief is palpable, but literally facing the world’s press as we leave the forecourt, every man appreciates that there is still plenty of opportunity for an unfortunate photograph. We head towards home, saluting at Wellington Arch, and then paying
compliments again at the Hyde Park Bombing memorial; with another chapter of regimental history added to those already so obviously abundant. We return into barracks to the applause of family and friends who have gathered to welcome us back. The regiments go through their ceremonial dismount, 186 horses, snorting and blowing, knowing as well as we do, that it’s over. Commanders line up, still mounted, as their divisions are led in hand down to the stables of The Life Guards and up to the stables of the Blues and Royals. Smiles and grins are just discernable under state helmets; subconsciously, spare hands check medals are still pinned to the chest; relief the overwhelming emotion. With every man back in, commanders dismount and follow the last soldier into the stables. Farriers check horses for injuries, soldiers report on the state of their horse and themselves to their Corporals of Horse. Heels are driven into the ground as reports from each troop conﬁrm that all is well. Job done. Except of course, at Knightsbridge, the job is never done. Tack is removed to be cleaned, horses are groomed and then fed and the stables are administered. Already soldiers are preparing for tomorrow’s duties. And the next morning, as the nation enjoys another day off we will return to our stables at 0600 ready to repeat the process. The horses may have just completed another major ceremonial event but they won’t feed themselves.
The Sovereign’s Escort moves down the Mall
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 57
Spruce Meadows 2011 - Exercise Cockney Maple by Captain T W J Davie
iding is an inherently adrenalineinducing business. I pondered this thought as I overtook a prize-winning thoroughbred in a move which many who have enjoyed seeing their horse come up the hill at Cheltenham would have approved. Unfortunately, I was in a show-jumping arena. Not competing - and in full state kit. As another pair of marshals stepped smartly aside to avoid the path that Escano, my noble steed, had chosen for us, I reﬂected on the journey that had led me up to this point. Every once in a while an e-mail lands in an inbox that raises more of a smile than your average ‘DII Service Impact Announcement’. So it was that I was asked to lead the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment’s participation in this year’s Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ tournament. The Regiment, along with The King’s Troop, Royal Horse Artillery has been providing ‘colour guards’ to Spruce Meadows for nearly 40 years and the path I was about to follow is well-trod. Flights were booked, freight was packed, and funding was found. Forging the way in the form of the Advance Party were Staff Corporal Walker and Lance Corporal of Horse Abbott, Master Saddler and Riding Instructor respectively. Arriving ahead of the main body they were able to select the most suitable horses for our work, apparently from a stable marked ‘horses that dislike ceremonial work.’ They worked hard to ﬁt saddles and head kits and quickly get them up to speed with being ridden in the accoutrements of state kit. Given their high energy levels and propensity to misbehave they also worked hard to ﬂatten our substitute ‘Cavalry Blacks’ as much as possible.
Meadows participants: (L-R) Tpr Marais 39, Tpr Day, SCpl Walker, LCoH Abbott
and we were able to enjoy the good weather with an afternoon out to see Calgary reﬂecting the glorious sunshine that was starting to make us nervous about the effects of wrapping ourselves in a pressure cooker in 32° heat. Spruce Meadows itself is a family owned and run showground that is immaculate in every way. Every blade of grass is the most verdant shade of green, every hedge trimmed and weather vanes shine as if Brassoed by the keenest Boxman; a perfect background for some immaculately turned-out cavalrymen. With the Spruce Meadows veteran
SCpl Walker having led the way in the All Canada Ring on our ﬁrst morning, it was my turn to lead the way in our ﬁrst International Ring gig. Aboard a Cavalry Black, animals used to ‘spurs for go, bit Banbury for stop’ one generally has a feeling that ‘it’ll probably be ok’. This feeling was strangely absent as we rode into the International Ring for the ﬁrst time behind prizewinners mounted on million dollar horses. The usual format for the prize-givings, for which we provided colour guards, was to ride on, either preceding or following the top ten placed horses, bookend them whilst prizes were given and then follow on as they carried out a victory lap in canter to
Horses familiar to past participants of Spruce Meadows were chosen; Escano, Esteem, Rialto and the ominously named Final Destination were introduced to Troopers Cox 97, Day, Marais 39 and me, presumably to mutual intrigue. Continuing familiarisation went well
An afternoon off in Calgary: the view from the Calgary Tower
58 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
Tpr Day and SCpl Walker wait to go on
fence we continued to, almost literally, ride our luck and managed to stay on and indeed look smart for the duration of the tournament. We continued to clean kit and horses and turn ourselves out on parade and in arenas up to six times a day, the burning sun welcoming record numbers of visitors but ruining boots and soaking tunics.
At the canter past the British fence in the International Ring
the tune of the Radetzky March. The Radetzky March, a tune burned, I suspect, onto the soul of every Spruce Meadows participant is a distinctive work and the horses are as familiar with it as we are. As the Band of the Royal Engineers ﬁred up for another rendition, and with our horses having been made to stand still for 20 minutes whilst thoroughbreds were allowed to freely wander the arena, they were almost literally bouncing on all four hooves. My horse, Escano, scenting the opportunity to take off, did so, hard on
the heels of horses whose injury was not only humanely but also ﬁnancially unthinkable. Having managed to chew on his reins repeatedly during the prize giving, he had apparently unthreaded the buckle on them… And so it is that we arrive where I started, pondering adrenaline, travel insurance and hoping against hope that I wasn’t about to come off… For the ﬁrst time in some years, at Spruce Meadows I found some luck from somewhere and we became a rare iteration of our role, in that having avoided falling at the ﬁrst
We sat outside the British House adding our unique spectacle to some high proﬁle proceedings and sat outside the marketplaces, alongside similar offerings from The King’s Troop, Lord Strathcona’s Horse and Sam Steele’s Scouts (a recreative organisation that fascinated us, and one for whom the boundary between ﬁction and reality didn’t seem to exist – perhaps like us dressing up as servants of Charles II in our free-time). There, we were encouraged to interact with the public; answering their questions and talk to them, prompting some frustrating comments along the lines of “So, you can talk? Not like the royal guards back in Eng-er-land…” After ﬁve days either sweating under the scrutiny of some unseasonably hot sun or under the cameras and spotlights of the International Ring we completed our last task. As we left the ring for the ﬁnal time we were left to wonder at the sights we had seen and the sight that
In the international Ring: (L-R) Capt T W J Davie, Tpr Day, LCoH Abbott, Tpr Cox 97
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 59
Tpr Day sets off down a black run
we had been, but above all, we were left wondering how we had ‘got away with it’. And so it was that, with relief the over-riding emotion, we headed out of Calgary with our Spruce Meadows minivan pointed in the direction of Banff for some well-earned adventurous training. There we were able to enjoy, amongst other things, white water rafting, horse trekking(!) and some mountain biking. The good weather held and we enjoyed a stunning few days in Banff National
Tpr Cox 97 in the International Ring
Park, visiting Lake Louise and just a couple of local public houses as we wound down after our intense work period at the competition. Limits and nerves were tested on mountain bikes as we wound our way down black runs with signs that suggested that all would not end well if we made any errors. A full day out on the more exciting parts of the Kicking Horse River saw Team HCMR (with a couple of Belgian attachments) raft down nearly 30 kilometres of Class V rapids. Leading the way again, I was the only crew member to bail out involuntarily into
Team HCMR (with Belgian attachments) white water rafting down the Kicking Horse River
water to which the epithet ‘cold’ does not even begin to do justice. Having been personally congratulated on our representation of the British Army by the Canadian High Commissioner and the showground’s owner, Mr Ron Southern, and having conquered mountains and rafted rivers we returned to the UK safe, if a little jetlagged, with some great photos and some lifelong memories but mainly a newfound and deeply ingrained fear of hearing the Radetzky March on horseback; we all wish next year’s participants luck.
Capt T W J Davie gets his feet wet…
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Images of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
The President of the United States is greeted in the palace garden
HCMR Christmas Card 2011. Exercising on Holkham Beach, Norfolk
The State Trumpeters in The Guards Chapel
The Band of The Life Guards leads off parade
62 â– Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
The Peninsula Tower dressed Blue Red Blue
Riding back from The Queenâ€™s Birthday Parade
The Comd Offr leads the trot past
Capt Lukas demonstrates cutting, bringing his division round
Dusty work for the Maj Gen and Comd Offr
The Major General inspects the Mounted Regiment
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment â– 63
The Royal Wedding - A Photo Montage
Col Cowen gives a media interview to Piers Morgan and Cat Deeley
Conmael Marches into position
The Band of the Coldstream Guards marches out the streetliners
The streets stand ready
The large expectant noisy crowd in The Mall
Mounted troops in Victoria Street waiting to move off The Captainâ€™s Escort Advance Points on Horse Guards
64 â– Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
The Captain’s Escort enters The Mall The couple’s carriage leaves Horse Guards
Maj NPG van Cutsem commanding the escort in The Mall
Capt HCAD Wales enjoying the day
Capt J Mann grimly escorts the happy Royal couple
The Queen’s carriage leaves Horse Guards
The Sovereign’s Escort at the start of The Mall
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Advance points trotting on
A happy Sovereign
The Queen’s carriage in the Mall
The crowds leave The Mall, happy dry and tired
Last man in The Mall
The photograph ﬂashed round the world
Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 67
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up Household Cavalry Golf 2011
by Captain QM(T) Paul McKechnie RHG/D
he year started in March with the Household Division Championships which leads very nicely into the Colonel in Chiefs Cup both held at Worplesden GC. The ﬁrst team run by Capt (Retd) Dick Hennessy-Walsh progressed to the second round in September. The second team won their morning match but were unfortunately knocked out in the afternoon. April sees the start of the invitations and we were privileged to play Sunningdale New Course. Recently rated as the 15th best course out of 1000 around the world the company, course and golf beﬁtted such a setting. The household Cavalry team lost by 12 points, all from one match, which was soon forgotten over an excellent meal, stories of the day’s events and trick shots. Of note SCpl Chris Lewis should be congratulated after hitting a tree on the 15th, landing on the green and dislodging another ball in the process. During May we returned to Swinley Forest GC another course graded in the top twenty of the top 1000 courses around the world. The course was in impeccable condition considering the recent dry weather. The household Cavalry team lost 3-2 after a strong start. Again the company from the Artisans was excellent. A rafﬂe was held for prizes donated by the comedian Tom O’Connor which raised £100 for the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties fund. In July the Household Cavalry held their annual match against Eton College. As
WCGC pictured from L to R: WO2 Alan Hughes (trying to call his caddie!), Trumpet Major Tim West, Tpr Adam Ward, Mr Chris Bye, SSgt Graham Simpson, CoH Dave Young (kneeling, well done!), CoH Lee Walker, LCoH Jason Wharton, LCoH Pez Perry, LSgt Shaun Hall, SCpl Gilbert Wheeler, Capt Paul McKechnie
with previous years the links with Eton College GC was very strong and the banter throughout the day ensured a close match. Eton College GC won 4 to 1. The increasingly busy diary led me to plan the revitalised match against Wimbledon Common Golf Club in July. Traditionally held in the ﬁrst week of September the new date ensured all ﬁnished while daylight remained. Now entering its 18th year the match and links with WCGC were stronger than ever. Played over the famed Wimbledon Common all golfers must wear red polo shirts to identify themselves to walkers and joggers. The course was in excellent condition having beneﬁtted from the
Colonel in Chiefs Cup Winners. L to R SCpl Gilbert Wheeler, Lt Col (Retd) Stu Sibley, Capt Hennessy-Walsh, Mr Peter Alliss, Mr Steve Wood, Mr Russell Taylor and Mr Rocky Dunkley
recent rainfall particularly the greens which were as good as I have ever seen them. The match was four ball better ball which beneﬁtted from some close handicap groups. For the ﬁrst time the H Cav team sported 5 new players who had never played the course before. WCGC is a challenging course as those that had not played it before soon found out. After some close matches, WCGC won 5 - 1. The third group containing WO2 Alan Hughes and SSgt Graham Simpson witnessed a hole in one by Mr Dave Stone. The meal, drinks and banter (golﬁng and otherwise) after was of equal note as old friendships and rivalries were remembered. September brings the conclusion to the Colonel in Chiefs Cup. As reigning champions the ﬁrst team (pictured), led by Capt (Retd) Dick Hennessy-Walsh (holding the trophy), were keen to retain the trophy. In the morning the semi-ﬁnal was played against the Welsh Guards who were rather hampered by not having all of their regular players to choose from. H Cav comfortably won 11 up. Peter Alliss arrived in time to see the matches come in for lunch and then dined with the teams. He then went around the afternoon matches in a buggy and spoke with all of us. He later remarked that he did see some ‘very interesting shots’ during the course of his trip around the various matches.
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The ﬁnal against the Irish Guards was a much tighter affair with H Cav just coming in with the win 2 up. It was a very tense affair in all matches but in the end H Cav just did enough. Peter Alliss presented the prizes to everybody after the end of play and he
was most generous in giving to support this event. During summer leave we took the opportunity offered by Hoebridge GC to get together and try a new course. The course was in excellent condition with the greens being exceptionally good, fast
and sometimes comical. The weather proved to be the biggest test of the day but this did not detract from the golf tales at the BBQ after. During November we visited Blue Mountain GC in Bracknell. This was well supported and saw a new group of regimental golfers which bodes well for the future.
HCR Regimental Football 2011
he end of 2011 sees the culmination of an incredibly successful year for the Household Cavalry football team. Having secured the league and cup double in the 2010/11 season under the careful guidance of Cpl Maj Parker (B Sqn) there are high hopes indeed for the 2011/12 season. With his head held high Cpl Maj Parker has now retired from management to pursue his future career as MTWO. Such as Lt Pickthall and CoH Nicol have stepped up to the mark and will be making the key decisions for this season. In reality CoH Nicol will be making the key decisions and Lt Pickthall will be paying for any post-match beers.
all those involved in the team and was particularly poignant for those members of the team who served along LCoH Woodgate. The match demonstrated the important role sport can have in supporting the Regimental charity as well as keeping close ties with those whose families have given so much in service. Unfortunately, with the Army’s extremely busy schedule, securing ﬁxtures for the new season was difﬁcult and the team had only managed to complete one match by the end of November. This was a convincing 6-0 victory against the MOD Block A team in
Chelsea which saw what will most likely be goal of the Season scored by LCoH Eade. His ‘shot’ from the halfway line somehow found it’s way into the net and the defence can stand easy knowing it has scored its goal for the season. The team bonded extremely well during the game and the football was of an extremely high standard. Long gone was the hopeful long-ball attacking of old and a new vibrant passing game took its place. There are many challenges ahead for the team this season, not least keeping Cfn Staples (LAD) from having a stress induced heart attack and preventing Tpr McVey (C Sqn) from going mandown with a cold injury in goal. It would also be good if LCpl McWhirter could work out which half he should be in considering he is a defender. Never mind the fact that the ‘retired’ Cpl Maj Parker still appears at the sidelines at training offering his unwanted advice! But I am sure the collective talents of the team will prevail and of one thing we can be sure, we will end the season with more medals than the rugby team.
Lt Pickthall misses a chance…again
Pre-season training started well with a hard-fought draw against a very strong Irish Guards side. Added to this the team managed to ﬁt in several friendlies against local team The Phoenix where again the side performed very well playing some very consummate football. The team also found the time to play a charity game in memory of LCoH Woodgate which was extremely well attended and raised several thousand pounds for the Operational Casualties Fund. This was a brilliant day out for
LCpl McWhirter gets lost in the opposition half…again
Cpl Maj Parker shares the honours at the LCoH Woodgate Memorial game
HCR Regimental Rugby 2011
ince forming in June 2010, The Household Cavalry Regimental Rugby Team has had some notable successes. Unbeaten in their ﬁrst season, they boasted wins over SEAE, 4 Med Regt, MOD Abbey Wood, 27 Regt RLC, Windsor RFC and Leamington RFC resulting in a place in the Army Community Shield, which will be played throughout 2012.
competition where the squad made the quarter ﬁnals before being knocked out by a huge Cyprus Barbarians side. It was not all doom and gloom for the Tens Squad though with the customary fancy dress dance-off at the Akrotiri Rugby Club being clearly won by the HCR guys against a disappointed Royal Marines squad – no mean feat by any stretch of the imagination!
In between the 2011 and 2012 seasons there was also time to take a touring side to Cyprus for the Akrotiri Tens
Back in UK the season was rounded off with a raucous End of Season Dinner during which the Commanding Ofﬁcer
LCoH Qio goes on the attack against SEAE
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 69
presented awards to Sgt Moseley (Most Improved Player), LCpl Scheepers (Clubman of the Year), Tpr Caven (Try of the Season) and LCoH Sabatini (Player of the Season). At the time of going to press, the 2011/2012 season had also started well with a convincing 42-24 win of the Coldstream Guards at home, and although the squad has lost their Team Manager, Sgt Barkway to Army redundancy, hopefully there will be more success to come in 2012 in the Community Shield and the Army Southern League.
Cyprus 10’s touring side
Tpr Veramu claims the line-out ball in Cyprus
Household Cavalry Cresta Run Team 2011 by Lieutenant PJR Chishick LG
his year the Household Cavalry was fortunate to be able to bring out a team of six ofﬁcers and soldiers for the Cresta Run Army Junction Championships on the 27th January in St Moritz. The Cresta is an Ice Run, similar to a bob run apart from the fact that it is built by hand annually and the corners are not banked – meaning that if you were to put a curling stone in the bottom of the run, it would not reach the ﬁnish, but would fall out at Shuttlecock Corner into the straw and soft snow. Riders ride head ﬁrst on toboggans with spiked boots to control their speed. There are two starting points, “Junction”, two-thirds of the way up the run, where novice and intermediate riders start from, and “Top”, for which riders have to qualify by achieving a level of proﬁciency on the run. The Army Junction championships are held over a week in January, with a race at the end of the week, consisting of the Novice Open race, Handicap race and the 17th/21st Lancers Trophy for the fastest Regimental pair. The race is conducted over three rides, or “courses”, with the lowest aggregate time winning (whether as an individual or a pair for the team race). Representing the Regiment were three ofﬁcers and three soldiers from both the Service and Mounted Regiments. The Life Guards ‘A’ Team comprised Capt PJR Chishick and Lt AGF Horne, Life Guards ‘B’, Lt TAR LCpl Joyce in the straw!
The Household Cavalry Team L-R – Lt Whiting LG, LCpl Murphy RHG/D, Lt Horne LG, Capt Chishick LG, LCpl Joyce RHG/D and LCpl Chalklin LG
Whiting and LCpl DCJ Chalklin and the Blues and Royals’ team was made up of LCpl RJ Murphy and LCpl JC Joyce HCMR. In the 17th/21st Lancers Cup the experienced pair of the Life Guards’ ‘A’ Team came in ﬁrst place with almost 30 seconds ahead of the next team over the three courses, with consistent riding of 44 and 45 seconds by Lt Horne and Capt Chishick. LCpl Murphy RHG/D, who had started riding only at the beginning of the week won the Novice Open Championship and came Third in the Handicap race. LCpl Chalklin LG also took fourth place the Novice open. Aside from the three soldiers from the Regiment, there were no other ORs competing in the Army championships and to have two placed in the top four of the Novice Open is a considerable achievement. LCpl Murphy’s times have improved steadily getting down to 49 seconds from Junction and he is looking to go to Top next year to try to get into the Army Team.
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Capt Chishick in the run
The following week was the InterServices week and Top riding. The Army Top Championships, the Scots Guards Cup, took place on the Tuesday. Lt Horne LG took ﬁrst place comfortably with Capt Chishick LG in second place followed by Colonel Wieloch QRL in third place. This competition is designed to select the Army team for the Inter-Services race on the Thursday against the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force. In the competition this year, with some consistent riding from the Life Guards, the Army team came a close second to the Royal Air Force, with only four seconds separating the top two teams over the three courses. The Lord Trenchard Trophy for the fastest individual Rider over the course of the race went to Lt Horne, and Capt Chishick was placed 4th behind the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy Team Captains. The Army Captain suffered an unlucky fall at Shuttlecock this year but with a bit of luck, the Army team stand a good chance of regaining the Prince Philip Trophy next year after a gap of several years. Regimental Cresta is looking extremely promising for years to come, with two Life Guards in the Army Team and a Lance Corporal from the Blues and Royals potentially qualifying next year. The
trip would not have been possible without the assistance of the Regimental Associations and the Household Division, enabling us to open up a sport that is normally viewed as an ‘Ofﬁcer sport’, to other ranks. The soldiers from the Regiment had the trip of a lifetime and were
able to experience a high-adrenaline sport that they would otherwise have not had a chance to try. One of them has shown particular aptitude that we intend to cultivate and we hope to try to bring out other soldiers in the future as well.
Some of the Regiment’s silverware from the fortnight L-R The Lord Trenchard Trophy, the 17th/21st Lancers Cup, the Novice Open Prize, The Scots Guards Cup
Regimental Sailing 2011 by Lieutenant PJR Chishick LG
his year has been a busy one for Regimental Sailing. With all squadrons now back in the country, the Regiment has made good use of the Household Division Yacht, Gladeye, this year. There have been several sailing exercises around the UK as well as some overseas. Two crews from D Squadron took part in Exercise COCKNEY VIKING, the Grenadier Guards’ sponsored exercise that took Gladeye to the Baltic for June and July. We were responsible for the return leg, delivering the yacht from Kiel, Germany back to the UK. As ever, the North Sea weather was characteristically unpredictable with gale force winds keeping the boat storm bound for a couple of days and making it a rough crossing for the crew. The changeover scheduled for the east coast of the UK had to be moved to the Dutch coast as a result of the weather, and it made for a challenging channel crossing when a weather window ﬁnally opened. We sent two crews down to Seaview for the Household Division Sailing Association (HDSA) Regatta in June. The regatta takes place over two days in the three-man Mermaid keelboats.
Aside from the helms, Maj Bedford and Capt Chishick, none of the members of the team had sailed a keelboat before. WO2 Santi took over from Maj Bedford on the second day and got to grips with racing even though it was his ﬁrst day as a helm. We competed against a number of teams from the Foot Guards and our ‘A’ boat came in a close third place with only one point between the top three teams, amidst some very competitive racing. In terms of yachting activity on the UK coast, we have sent a crew to assist a racing team from the Royal Yacht Squadron in delivering a boat from Hamble to Weymouth – providing some free Adventurous Training on a Wednesday sports afternoon. We have had a week on Gladeye in May as well as a further two weeks on the south coast in October, split between A and C squadrons and the Mounted Regiment have taken her for a fortnight in September. Having restored the Regimental Laser dinghy, we will be starting up Regimental Dinghy sailing together with the HDSA allowing us to take soldiers Dinghy sailing during the
WO2 Santi, LCpl Archer and Tpr Silk at the Seaview Regatta
week at Datchet at the Queen Mother Reservoir. The hope is to enlarge the ﬂeet to enable us to take more soldiers sailing on sports afternoons, and then get them on Dinghy courses with the Army Sailing Association at Thorney Island. We have about 25 soldiers who have
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 71
completed Competent Crew courses at the Joint Services Adventurous Sail Training Centre in Gosport this year, and we are starting to build a pool of qualiﬁed sailors in order to start getting members of the Regiment away on the forthcoming more adventurous expeditions, such as Ex CANARY GOLD, the two weeks sailing in the Atlantic in January 2012 based out of the Canary Islands, on which we have eight soldiers booked. In December a crew of the Regiment’s Operational casualties, most of whom had never sailed before, went on an expedition to the British Virgin Islands. This was generously supported by the Operational Casualties’ Fund and Help for Heroes, and a report on the exercise follows separately.
Lt Chishick and Lt Boyt at the helm
It has been a good year for Regimental sailing, and we have made good use of the Household Division Yacht. It is an excellent resource and opportunity for extremely good value Adventurous Training. Hopefully we will continue to do the same next year, ﬁtting it
Tpr Smith and Tpr Lovegrove getting to grips with keelboat racing
around the Regimental commitments in BATUS as well as looking at organising a Regimental boat at Cowes Week and some more overseas expeditions, potentially including two weeks in Vancouver.
Duffy RHG/D at the Army Swimming and Water Polo Championship 2011/2012
he Individual Swimming Championships took place on the 23rd June 2011. These were part of a three day Army Swimming and Water Polo Championship at the Aldershot Garrison Swimming Pool. The Championships were held in accordance with Federation Internationale de Nation (FINA) Laws and Technical Rules, along with the promoters (Army Swimming Union) conditions.
Service swimming circles. With little preparation time before the Army Individual Championships it was going to be a tough task. On completing Phase Two Training at Bovington, Tpr Duffy was given training time prior to arrival at Hyde Park Barracks and Khaki Ride. This time clearly blew some cobwebs away and the hard training regime was rewarded with ﬁve gold medals and top individual point scorer.
In recent years the Household Cavalry has not had a representative to put forward for this annual championship but in 2011 Tpr Duffy bucked this trend and upon demonstrating his credentials was duly selected. This reincarnation was borne out of a successful career that began 18 years ago, the crowning moment of which had been becoming British Short Course Swim Champion, which was part of the Sydney Olympic Trials held at Ponds Forge Shefﬁeld. There was hope that the former Surrey Swim Captain of four successive years might now leave a mark in
With this platform to build on the InterServices Championships were a matter of weeks away and much was at stake. The RAF and Navy had dominated this meeting but with Tpr Duffy regularly climbing onto the podium, he was rewarded by running up a record high return of points. With this performance getting him noticed Tpr Duffy has been selected for the Inter-Services Team and representation at major international events. Tpr Duffy hopes to continue to represent the Household Cavalry in the future and wishes to thank all the Army
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personnel that helped provide him with the means both to train and compete in the competitions. An English Channel crossing where he hopes to raise money for charity and break the Army record is a future goal, however this may have to wait until one or two boxes have been achieved. Tpr Duffy RHG/D holding the best individual trophy
Eagles Veterans RUFC Annual Report by WO2 JA Evans RHG/D
he Eagles Rugby Veterans once again sent a sizeable squad to the Yarnbury Rugby Club in Horsﬁrth near Leeds to take part in their annual Rugby Veterans’ tournament, which aims to raise money for many local charities. The tour party as normal met up in Leeds City Centre on the Friday night for a few pre-tournament drinks and to catch up with old friends; the turnout this year was about 50 players and supporters. We were honoured to have once again in our ranks WO2 (Retd) Andy Price and WO2 (Retd) Conrad Price, both ex Welsh Guards, old foes on the ﬁeld of play that have now become great friends and members of the Club; they were joined by ex-Light Dragoon Dave Bettney known to many of the club for his days at the RAC Gunnery School in Lulworth. On Saturday morning under the stewardship of John Kilvington the AGM was held with the main proposal being for the club to focus its efforts on raising funds for the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund (HCOCF).
The Club President John Kilvington and Club Chairman at the AGM
After the AGM those that still could pull on a pair of boots and play went to get changed while the remainder retired to the bar in preparation for the third half. I noticed that our numbers at the bar this year far outweighed those in the changing room. This year’s competition, much to our relief, was run with two
pools of three teams with the winners of the pools going through to the “Grand Final”. Before our ﬁrst game, and with the agreement of the opposition, we had a minutes silence for all those members of the Regiment old and young that had passed away since we last played. We kicked off and straightaway we knew we were in a game as Harrogate is a well drilled and organised team who play week-in, week-out. Our organisation and ﬁtness were not up to the Harrogate standard and despite some great individual performances from the likes of Capt Chris Trinick, Tony “Chin” Smith in the pack and Conrad Price in the backs we were well beaten 17-0. We regrouped did a couple of changes and went into the second match against York determined to improve our performance. However at half time we found our selves 12 points to nil down and looking at a another defeat. Maybe the ring rust was wearing off or the opposition had started to relax but all of a sudden in the second half we started to dominate at the set piece and the loose and after some ﬁne phases of play Conrad Price was able to go over for a ﬁne score; this was followed up quickly by another try to bring the score to 12-10; but we were the team in the ascendant and pushing for the winning score. However, despite a sterling effort we ran out of time and left the ﬁeld of play disappointed about coming out of the tournament without a win, but happy that our performance had improved during the day.
matches with his normal skill and expertise. In the bar after the match in traditional style our club won the “pintdrinking boat race.” Most of the Club then retired to the Scarborough Arms in Leeds City Centre, our traditional watering hole, to carry on the motion.
During the “Third Half” in the Yarnbury club bar Chris Trinick was presented with Player of the Tournament with the “Rick Buckle Man of the Season Award” going quite rightly to Neal Gaskell who has been a great contributor to the Eagles for many years and also during this year’s tournament refereed most of the
Mr Jock Robinson collects for HCOCF
As usual the Club now follow up the Spring tour with a family weekend Summer camp at Mark and Liz Dyche’s house, which was held during the Bank Holiday weekend at the end of August. The “Big D” festival attracted many members of the club and their families which coincided with Mark’s 50th birthday and a surprise visit by the “Stevie Wonder Brothers” aka Mr John Kilvington and Marty Elliott; well done boys for laying on some excellent entertainment. Both parents and children enjoyed the fun if not the wet weather of a great weekend. Once again, many thanks to Mark and Liz for laying on the weekend and making it such an astounding success. In November many members of the club went to Bury St Edmonds to take part in the Lavenham Charity match organised in memory of LCoH Jo Woodgate by Mark Constine to raise funds for the HCOCF. We are as ever on the lookout for players or supporters still out there who have yet to experience a vets’ weekend with the Eagles. If interested contact either myself at the Army Medical Directorate Camberley on 01276 412950 or Mark & Liz Dyche on 07870157361.
The Eagles 2011
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 73
Army Cycling Championships by Tpr Forrest RHG/D
scaping from the QM(T) Department, I set off for the Army cycling championships, from 4-8 July 2011, a series of races comprising different disciplines of cycling including; road racing, time trial, cross country and downhill. As a member of the Army Cycling Union and rider in the downhill team this week is an important date in the calendar as it’s where we enjoy these disciplines with civilians (as the downhill races are done on speciﬁc tracks joint owned by MoD and the public) as they are invited to ride with the ACU.
Myself tackling a very wet and loose course at a combined service race
New bike, new kit, new season
The ﬁrst day consisted of the downhill team assisting the road races for their hill climb race. I was involved in timing and assisting with the race co-ordination. The afternoon consisted of doing the recce for the ﬁrst downhill race. This is tested by getting other riders from the road and cross country disciplines to race our tracks and we have to ensure that nothing is too dangerous for a novice. All abilities are encouraged to ride and race. This involves walking the track and competing in the race. The downhill secretary assesses and judges the course making adjustments such as sandbagging some of the major drops so that there is an option of rolling down safe instead of jumping or dropping off obstacles. The second day consisted of us arriving at the track at Tidworth free ride club to walk the track, which was used last year, and we wanted to see how much we had improved (I managed to knock a minute and 15 seconds of my previous time). After a few practice runs, I was involved in the timing until my turn arrived. In downhill racing one rider completes the course at a time, the winner having the fastest time.
When my turn to race arrived it had been raining hard for at least an hour and the track was turning a little greasy. I set off and hit most of the lines (the part of the track I wanted to hit in order to carry the speed through the obstacles). Having raced the previous year on a cross country bike and this time having a downhill-speciﬁc bike helped massively, and I made it through in a relatively good time. My second run was unfortunately not as good, as I failed to hit the lines I wanted and it cost me a good few seconds even if the ride felt faster. The third and ﬁnal run was a slightly slippery affair as the ﬂat turns had become a mess and having my summer tyres ﬁtted was not paying off. I managed to make it down in the same time as my ﬁrst run but it wasn’t enough to get on the podium. However, much fun was had and I was placed higher than last year, so it was a personal success. The third day was for maintenance and some of us assisted the road racers with the races throughout the day at various locations around the Aldershot area. I spent the afternoon again on the recce for the next downhill race this time on a harder track and with only one of the drops being adjusted for novices (many of the downhill attempted it, including myself, and most ended up eating dirt of which I was one!). When we were happy with the course it was taped off and we called it a day. The fourth day was the big race day. This was the one to win to be crowned the Army Downhill Champion. More downhill riders and team members arrived and there was a big buzz in
74 ■ Household Cavalry Sports Round-up
the air. The previous champ was there to defend his title and the banter was good. Once again, it’s a few practice runs, and I started the race on timing duties clocking the riders in before it was my turn to push the bike up the hill and take my place. Once at the top and thoroughly hanging out, the guys are lined up and the abuse and encouragement is ﬂowing. As I got closer to my run at start point, like all good plans it goes pear shaped. As your mind is racing trying to remember the track turn for turn and line for line, you hear your heart beating inside your head encased in a full faced helmet; you’re making last minute adjustment to goggles and gloves and praying to the deity of gravity to be kind if you crash and fall. Then you get the count down 5..4..3..2..1..rider away best foot through the cranks and you’re straight away looking, judging, trying to think one step ahead and hit the lines and remember everything you have learned on the training camps and from past races all for it to end in under a few minutes. Before you know it you have hit the last ski jump and table top and have crossed the line (which happened to be a bee’s nest, not the best way to end but funny as you watch each other getting stung dancing around, big butch downhill riders that we are) dumping the bike to ﬁnd out that a 2nd Lieutenant from the Commando gunners has rocked up on the day and cleaned up taking the crown. After the race results and awards were given we all pushed back up the track for one last ride as a team hitting the jumps again and just enjoying riding the bike for what it is, no race pressure
just riding your bike and having fun with your team mates. Good times. Soldier magazine put a great article out on the race and the whole championships. With many great pictures and supporting text, this has helped further the interest in a growing bike discipline giving us hope for the future that we can expand the team further. As the sponsorship deals slowly keep coming in, it gives us a chance to show how professional we are on the battleﬁeld and on the bike and hopefully give the RAF (our biggest rivals) a run for their money next season in the Combined Services and civilian races next year.
Myself and Craftsman Price catching a breather between runs at a Combined Service race.
he Household Cavalry Regiment hosted a tremendous night’s boxing in Combermere Barracks on Tuesday 10 May, staging a novice match between the Service Regiment versus the Mounted Regiment - the ﬁrst that anyone could remember, compered smoothly by WO2 Marsh.
LSgt Sessing AGC, the night’s most gallant loser in blue, toe to toe with LCpl Clinton (REME)
With Ofﬁcers and Non Commissioned Ofﬁcers resplendent in Mess Kit, an absorbing contest took place. The evening was notable for the spirit and vigour with which all contestants set to their tasks. HCR were narrowly the winners on the night, after the judges had resharpened their pencils and rattled their abacuses to sum up correctly the match results. Particular thanks are due to Mr Hitchings, WO2 Marsh and his staff for such a ﬁne evening, and to the ofﬁcials marshalled by Mr Lyons. The guests, ofﬁcers and boxers were then invited to the Warrant Ofﬁcers’ and Non Commissioned Ofﬁcers’ Mess for post match drinks.
he lone mention for cricket is for the HCR versus HCMR ofﬁcers’ cricket match. This was to be played on Agar’s plough at Eton College. HCMR won the toss and batted, posting a very achievable total of 118 in just less than the allotted 20 overs. The photograph records the ofﬁcers present in teams led by their Comd Offrs, with HQ H Cav providing the umpires. Unfortunately, the rain came down early in HCR’s innings. While their run rate was likely to give them victory by the Duckworth Lewis method, the match was abandoned. Special mention must go to the energetic running of Capt Dansey, and the hitting of Capt O’Flynn.
HCR v HCMR cricket 2012
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 75
Scorched in Scottsdale, Arizona – 2011 Golf Tour Diary by Captain (Retd) R Hennessy-Walsh
ocated in the beautiful Sonoran Desert, Scottsdale, Arizona, is bordered by Phoenix to the west and the McDowell Mountains on the east. It is annually rated among the nation’s most desirable communities to live in, visit and do business in. It also has around 314 annual sunny days per year and it was not surprising therefore that the annual golf tour (with Harry Ford’s desire over some years) should visit a part of the USA that we had not played in before. We left on 29th April and, for those who remember, it was the day of the Royal Wedding so although most of us caught sight of the early TV coverage we had to watch what we could on various televisions around London Heathrow. There was no change in those attending from the Miami tour last year. In the weeks leading up to the departure date there were some back concerns with Harry (Ford) and Paul (Maxwell). Bjorn and his partner Ginny were blessed with their second child just before we left and the author’s wife also had a bad back. All of these issues had the potential to threaten the trip but fortunately everything fell into place. Max’s back, however, was to have a more profound impact on him later in the tour. The eight of us spread ourselves around the BA aircraft in Club, World Traveller Plus and World Traveller for our 10 hour ﬂight to Phoenix. The Club lounges were great, very comfortable and good preparation for the long trip. Pete announced when we all got together just before take-off that he had not played any golf since the Miami 2010 trip! It was a naughty ruse. The ﬂight was uneventful until we caught sight of the Grand Canyon just before the end of our journey. This was a truly awesome sight to see from above ; it must be a wonderful spectacle at ground level. We had our usual complications ﬁnding the resort and ﬁnally we checked into our rooms at the Xona Resort and Suites which initially did not make a favourable impression. I suppose we had got used to particularly brilliant accommodation in Miami and other locations over the years. I guess our overall tiredness contributed to the disappointment and in the event we did warm to them over the week. The ﬁrst evening consisted of a trip to Walmart for some shopping. Tiredness crept up on all of the shoppers and rather than look for a nice restaurant for our ﬁrst dinner, we had a Big Mac in the store (mistake really). It was a warm evening and not surprisingly we were in bed
pretty early after such a long day. The following day started (at around 0500) – for Gary anyway – with a 30 minute thrashing on the running machine in the gym. He very heroically gave up sleep time to continue his training for the North of England 10km run in which he was competing in aid of HCOCF - taking place shortly after his return. Despite having wrecked feet, hands and head he continued this theme throughout the week paying dividends in the long term but ruined relations with his room partner who continued to try and sleep through the noise. The more sensible amongst us started their day with a quick swim in the salty pool right outside the accommodation and a soak in the hot tub. Even at that very early hour it was still extremely warm.
Note the embedded golf balls from wayward shots - fortunately not ours!!
Our opening round was on the Sunridge Canyon course; quite a stern challenge for the ﬁrst day. The golf course unfolds around the rugged ridges and shady canyons unique to the desert mountains that divide Fountain Hills from Scottsdale. The 13th hole kicks off what is known locally as the Wicked 6 and most of us understood why. Not an especially hot day but it was a possible contributing factor to the large amount of balls lost. A derelict body or not, Gary got the best score of the day (35 points), a great achievement. At some point during this round, Max exacerbated an already strained back and this had an adverse effect on him for the rest of the week. We continued our practise of visiting Outback’s on our ﬁrst proper evening where Russ very kindly paid 50% of the starters for failing his daily challenge! Sunday saw the swimmers and bathers out and about at around 0530 hrs before setting of for We-Ko-Pa. For sheer beauty, it’s hard to beat We-Ko-Pa Golf Club. Just Minutes from Scottsdale it is located within the boundaries of the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation. The Cholla Course, which we played, is dramatic
76 ■ Household Cavalry Sports Round-up
Fortunately we did not see too many at close-hand
to say the least as it plays across desert washes and atop ridges ﬂowing seamlessly into greens tucked into hillsides and desert. A brilliant course in the heart of the Indian community and the staff very kindly gave each of us a print of one of the two courses. The man with the bad feet did it again with a score of 32. In the evening we went to a highly recommended steak restaurant where some of the steaks visible on our arrival were truly vast. The announcement of the death of Osama Bin Laden during our meal had a dramatic effect upon the whole restaurant for the rest of the night and somewhat slowed up proceedings. Monday saw some of us (I wonder who that was!!) up at 4am for tea before later setting off for Eagle Mountain. Located minutes from Scottsdale in the rugged McDowell Mountains of Fountain Hills the course dramatically weaves its way through shaded box canyons and around majestic mountain peaks unique to this scenic corner of the Sonoran desert. There was a general improvement in everybody’s play today on a very good course. Bjorn (36), Harry (35) and Dick (34) were today’s movers and shakers. Considering his ailment this was a very good effort from Harry today. Only 85°C today but the forecast for the next four days was set fair at, 94, 98, 99 and 99. Italian meal in the evening.
In their dashing outﬁts; Russ, Pete, Andy, Dick, Harry, Gary, Bjorn and Paul
Tuesday we saw Lindford Christie and some of the GB sprint team around the resort during their summer training. Today we played the eagerly awaited Troon North Monument Course. The
“New” Monument course has been named #4 in Arizona and #44 in the nation. It was a fantastic experience and lived up to all expectations. Playing through ravines and around giant boulders was an incredible challenge and Russ (Taylor) was up to the test and victorious.
A view from one of our courses
Another view from one of the stunning courses
This was the ﬁrst day the poor Max was unable to play and after dropping us off elected to drive around looking for somewhere that might relieve him of his back pain. We drove around for ages in the evening looking for somewhere to eat and ﬁnally found a place that sold the most enormous burgers. Elevated by his win Russ, with a completely cavalier approach to what he put into his mouth, managed to ﬁnd some particularly hot chilli which had a dramatic and immediate effect on his frail body. It was about this time of the week that the injured amongst us began to litter the ﬂoors of their rooms trying to stretch their backs, and other parts of their bodies etc etc.
how difﬁcult the conditions (heat) and course was. LG (H-Walsh/Taylor) won the Wrigley challenge (against Dunkley the feet and Ford the back) for the 2nd consecutive year in a fairly close contest. In the non Wrigley effort Bjorn and Andy won. In the evening we dined at a Japanese Sapporo restaurant which we have tried to do now over the past couple of years - absolutely brilliant. Thursday - TPC of Scottsdale (Stadium course) today. Home of the largest attended tournament in the world, the fan-favourite Phoenix Open, TPC Scottsdale is a masterful blend of challenge and playability. The course is most famous for its par 3, 16th hole that transforms into “The Coliseum” during the Open - providing fans with one of the most exciting settings in professional sports. On the day we played it was quite an eerie experience seeing where all the stands would normally be but without the noise. As Arizona’s only PGA Tour facility, it’s a unique opportunity to experience the standards of quality and service normally reserved for the pros. It was a very hot day and because of an over eager marshal having an on course altercation with Harry, he managed to secure a free second round in the afternoon. This act of unrivalled madness can only be attributed to eight stupid Englishmen, wanting value for money, who relished the thought playing another bad round of golf in temperatures well over 100. How Max managed to play twice that day - doing a variety of interesting exercises and stretches before each shot - can only be known to him. Very little is remembered about the rest of this day due to overheating, tiredness and generally being very emotional. I think we went to Outback’s again that evening for our ﬁnal meal but very little is recalled.
Most of Friday was spent shopping and sitting by the pool and a ﬁnal lunch on the resort. Harry provided an insight into the 2012 options with emphasis on La Quinta in California - subsequently rejected - and Orlando afterwards being selected. The journey to the airport saw our highest temp at 103. Uneventful ﬂight and spent mostly sleeping. Presentations: Summary: playing golf ‘desert style’ certainly adds a different dimension. Going off the fairway can be dangerous and the local rules allow you to drop a ball to save you getting killed either by a rattlesnake or some kind of menacing cactus intent on throwing his spears at you. It is certainly an uncomfortable feeling walking in those areas and any who did always had a club with them. A long ﬂight and not really likely again. Florida again in 2012. Seve died on the day of our return. Prize Awards were as follows: Overall Champion Bjorn with an average of just over 32. 2nd - Gary 3rd - Russ Johnny Wilson Trophy Dick and Bjorn Mid Week Trophy Harry Wrigley Challenge LG Max’s Par 3 Challenge Pete with 38 points (very naughty as we said earlier)
Before the Wrigley Challenge. At least one team turned up correctly dressed!
Wednesday saw us (less Max again) playing at the Grayhawk Resort on the Raptor course. Since opening in 1994, Grayhawk Golf Club has become one of Arizona’s most celebrated golf clubs, mostly because of the two exceptional 18-hole golf courses – Talon and Raptor. Both have earned numerous awards and accolades over the years, and have hosted high-proﬁle competitive events such as the Andersen Consulting World Match Play Championship (now known as the Accenture Match Play Championship). Today was the only time (I think) that we saw a few rattlers. It was a truly lovely course and very much to Russ’s liking who won again with 32 points demonstrating
Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 77
The Life Guards
The deaths are announced of the following members of the Regiment who have sadly passed away during the previous 12 months. The Committee, and all Old Comrades, offer their sincere condolences to all members of their families. O Ever-living God, King Of Kings, In Whose Service We Put On The Breastplate Of Faith And Love, And For A Helmet The Hope Of Salvation, Grant We Beseech Thee That The Life Guards May Be Faithful Unto Death, And At Last Receive The Crown Of Life From Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen. May they Rest in Peace.
328638 CoH GA Conner Served 01 November 1940 to 31 May 1946 Died 1 January 2011, aged 91 years
456335 Lt M Cranley (laterThe Earl of Onslow) Served 10 May 1958 to 28 September 1964 Died 14 May 2011, aged 73 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal)
14137644 Cpl AF Baker Served 2 March 1946 to 1 July 1948 Died 9 August 2011, aged 83 years
23663631 Tpr MG Wakelin Served 6 May 1959 to 15 May 1967 Died 8 January 2011, aged 67 years
22205847 Cpl DG Higgins Served 21 January 1952 to 20 January 1955 Died 19 May 2011, aged 77 years
19130923 Tpr FB Paddy Served 6 February 1947 to 24 March 1949 Died 24 August 2011, aged 82 years
295576 Cpl LR Chadwick Served 27 April 1941 to 19 November 1946 Died 19 January 2004, aged 82 years
22049363 Cpl F McCorkell Served 16 May 1958 to 15 November 1970 Died 20 May 2011, aged 81 years
22781974 SCpl W Marsden Served 19 May 1953 to 5 November 1983 Died 9 September 2010, aged 73 years
22992784 Tpr GE Campbell Served 4 February 1954 to 26 February 1956 Died 23 January 2011, aged 76 years
295141 SQMC FT Martin Served 1 August 1936 to 31 January 1946 Died 28 May 2011, aged 93 years
22398518 Tpr JD Spires Served 24 August 1950 to 7 September 1952 Died 16 September 2011, aged 79 years
296723 SQMC D Robertson Served 11 November 1946 to 20 November 1968 Died 29 January 2011, aged 82 years
22556263 Tpr BG Ford Served 16 February 1953 to 16 February 1956 Died 1 June 2011, aged approx 76 years
24048269 Tpr CJ Moyes Served 10 February 1966 to 5 March 1970 Died 11 March 2011, aged 65 years
22076482 LCpl RG Rhodes Served 21 October 1948 to 29 May 1950 Died 12 June 2011, aged 81 years
237575 Major FRB Wordsworth Served 1 February 1942 to 15 May 1965 Died 17 September 2011, aged 89 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal)
330365 Captain RD Bentley Served 22 June 1943 to 18 April 1954 Died 7 January 2011, aged 86 years
22556632 Tpr A Nightingale Served 22 February 1954 to 22 January 1957 Died 16 March 2011, aged 75 years 5671991 Musician P Ravenor Served 10 June 1938 to 1 May 1964 Died 17 March 2011, aged 87 years 23215493 LCpl TA Harris Served 7 May 1957 to 26 October 1964 Died 11 April 2011, aged 71 years 19057617 Tpr DE Symon Served 29 August 1946 to 31 July 1948 Died 22 April 2011, aged 82 years 22140798 LCpl R Newbold Served 31 May 1949 to 3 June 1951 Died 5 May 2011, aged 80 years 296405 Cpl J Briggs Served 8 January 1945 to 5 August 1949 Died 11 May 2011, aged 83 years
90 â– Obituaries
22771716 CoH MA Theakston Served 31 March 1958 to 31 March 1969 Died 15 June 2011, aged 79 years 23969362 Tpr PA Howells 18 January 1965 to 14 August 1970 Died 24 June 2011, aged 65 years 397781 Captain The Hon Sir Nicholas Beaumont KCVO, DL Served 1 January 1950 to 1 January 1961 Died 22 June 2011, aged 81 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) 295797 Tpr DHF Ricketts Served 1 November 1941 to 31 October 1946 Died 11 July 2011, aged 88 years 22492368 Tpr AB Jones Served 7 June 1951 to 21 June 1953 Died 14 July 2011, aged 81 years 22556141 Tpr WB Hitchcock Served 4 November 1952 to 3 November 1967 Died 5 August 2011, aged 76 years
23558209 Tpr RM Hill Served 24 April 1958 to 12 June 1960 Died 22 August 2011, aged 72 years
22078667 Tpr RJ Mann Served 4 November 1948 to 6 June 1950 Died 23 September 2011, aged 81 years Tpr P Chambers Served 15 February 1949 to 14 February 1951 Died 26 September 2011, aged 80 years 22073685 Tpr RA Charter Served 1948 to 1950 Died in 2011 aged 81 years 22205828 Tpr DK Scott Served 28 December 1951 to 27 December 1958 Died 4 October 2011, aged 77 years 23036836 Tpr R Rosewarn Served 3 June 1954 to 31 May 1956 Died 5 October 2011, aged 75 years 22205369 Cpl F Fielding Served 30 May 1949 to 30 May 1957 Died 18 October 2011, aged 80 years 24220319 Tpr AB Krajnik Served 30 June 1971 to 20 November 1974 Died 23 October 2011, aged 58 years
22416618 Tpr RP Garrison Served 14 October 1950 to 1 January 1952 Died 27 October 2011, 79 years
296468 CoH GJ Whittle Served 25 September 1944 to 6 January 1969 Died 9 November 2011, aged 84 years
296161 Tpr FW Southam Served 14 October 1943 to 4 November 1947 Died 16 December 2010, aged 85 years
296687 CoH MP Shepherd Served 19 December 1945 to 25 July 1953 Died November 2011 aged 84 years
22864130 Tpr RB Ratcliffe Served 7 May 1953 to 29 May 1955 Died 13 November 2011, aged 79 years
22205499 Tpr DC Dall Served 10 February 1950 to 21 February 1955 Died 18 December 2011, aged 79 years
24048257 LCoH D Doehren Served 25 January 1966 to 12 December 1972 Died 1 November 2010, date unknown, aged 61 years 22556125 Tpr JF Adamthwaite Served 15 October 1952 to 29 January 1954 Died 4 November 2011, aged 76 years
22556759 Tpr AJ Dampier Served 1 July 1954 to 30 June 1957 Died 18 November 2011, aged 75 years 24394529 LCoH DL Snow Served 6 December 1976 to 18 December 1987 Died 4 December 2011, aged 51 years 24048336 Tpr HW Grant Served from 28 April 1966 until 22 April 1976 Died 13 December 2011 aged 62 years
396227 Capt RHG Dolbey Served 29 November 1948 to 1 July 1959 Died 18 December 2011 aged 83 years 21000159 WO2 TR Gardner Served 28 January 1948 to 27 January 1970 Died 19 December 2011 aged 86 years 23507862 Tpr DKR Williams Served from 16 February 1960 to 15 February 1969 Died 23 December 2011 aged 72 years
The Blues and Royals It is with much regret that the Honorary Secretary announces the death of the following Old Comrades. The Blues and Royals Association offer their sincere condolences to all members of their families. May they Rest in Peace. 22898236 Tpr AJ Bennett RHG Served 23 July 1953 to 14 August 1955 Died 2010, date unknown, aged 78 years 528727 Captain CJ Sayer MBE RHG/D Served 11 December 1964 to 10 December 1993 Died 7 January 2011, aged 63 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) 318014 Tpr J McGuinness 1RD Served 6 January 1938 to 6 January 1945 Died 17 January 2011, aged 93 years 364193 2Lt MC Dunlop OBE RHG Served 31 May 1945 to 6 April 1948 Died 21 January 2011, aged 83 years 109014 Major NL Brayne-Nicholls RHG Served 14 June 1941 to 8 May 1946 Died 26 January 2011, aged 94 years 22413735 Cpl WES Garrett RHG Served 1 September 1950 to 1 March 1956 Died 30 January 2011, aged 78 years 306219 Tpr JEL Timbrell RHG Served 28 April 1943 to 10 November 1944 Died January 2011, aged 86 years 480835 Lt Col GE Evans OBE ARCM PSM Served 5 April 1966 to 9 December 1982 Died 21 March 2011, aged 85 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal)
1157400 SQMC D StJ Oâ€™Dell RHG Served 29 April 1944 to 22 November 1969 Died 28 March 2011, aged 83 years
305271 Tpr G Funnel RHG Served 4 November 1937 to 1 February 1946 Died 23 June 2011, aged 91 years
3065152 CoH RD Reeves RHG Served 2 December 1942 to 1 December 1949 Died 3 April 2011, aged 88 years
406893 Count Peter Munster RHG Served 1 January 1943 to 31 December 1953 Died 25 June 2011, aged 80 years
306928 Captain JS Paton RHG Served 1 September 1943 to 1 August 1947 Died 10 April 2010, aged 85 years
24021441 Tpr SJ Appleby RHG Served 1 January 1965 to 1 January 1969 Died 30 June 2011, aged 65 years
24180530 LCoH AJ Auker-Howlett RHG/D Served July 1971 to October 1975 Died 11 April 2011, aged 64 years 306274 Tpr RB Thomson RHG Served 19 July 1943 to 27 September 1955 Died 28 April 2011, aged 82 years 22205760 CoH WT Hogg MBE RHG Served 21 September 1950 to 7 January 1956 Died 03 May 2011, aged 81 years 306785 WO2 RG Swann RHG Served 15 April 1946 to 1 February 1969 Died 26 May 2011, aged 82 years 14418347 Captain JS Coombe 1RD Served 4 February 1944 to 1 July 1947 Died 26 May 2011, aged 87 years
455884 Captain JWN Mitchell RHG Served 1 January 1957 to 1 January 1967 Died June 2011, date unknown, aged 72 years 330640 Major General Sir Roy Redgrave KBE MC RHG/D Served 1 August 1943 to 1 November 1980 Died 3 July 2011, aged 85 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) 306573 Cpl AE Woodbridge RHG Served 1 January 1944 to 1 January 1947 Died 4 July 2011, aged 84 years 22556540 CoH WR Steel RHG Served 3 November 1953 to 29 November 1965 Died 8 July 2011, aged 75 years
Obituaries â– 91
22205431 Cpl JP Brooks RHG Served 1 September 1949 to 1 September 1954 Died 26 July 2011, aged 82 years 22205385 CoH PG Rowley RHG Served 22 June 1949 to 1 July 1960 Died 28 July 2011, aged 88 years 23711367 Tpr W Bruce RHG Served 17 October 1961 to 18 October 1966 Died 6 August 2011, aged 69 years 306392 Tpr K Lawton RHG Served 3 February 1944 to 20 August 1947 Died 19 August 2011, aged 85 years 14992866 Cpl JM Thomas (1RD) Served 1 September 1944 to 1 August 1947 Died August 2011, date unknown, aged 86 years Lt J Williams RHG Served 1 January 1947 to 31 December 1954 Died 5 September 2011, aged 82 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) Lieutenant JCL Jenkinson 1RD Served 1 January 1945 to 31 December 1948 Died 7 September 2011, aged 85 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) 1063416 Sgt AH Swann 1RD Served 18 November 1945 to 19 January 1947 Died 9 September 2011, aged 88 years
23215219 LCoH LA Smaldon RHG/D Served 12 March 1956 to 13 May 1973 break of service 11 March 1959 to 13 May 1964. Died 15 September 2011, aged 76 years 243522 Captain PAWB Everard RHG Served 25 September 1942 to 19 July 1947 Died 18 September 2011, aged 88 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) 23870566 CoH JM Davis RHG/D Served 1 August 1961 to 1 July 1973 Died 29 September 2011, aged 68 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal) Major General PB Cavendish CB OBE DL 1RD Served 1943 to 1946 Died 24 October 2011, aged 86 years Captain JRW Palmer RHG Served 1964 to 1966 Died 25 October 2011, aged 68 years (His obituary appears elsewhere in this Journal)
306837 CoH J Wilshaw RHG Served 1 November 1947 to 31 October 1953 Died 10 December 2011, aged 83 years RC Colby RHG Served 1945 – 1947 Died 10 December 2011, aged 83 23236935 Tpr MD Longley Served 1 September 1955 to 28 February 1958 Died 31 December 2011, aged 74 years 25169353 LCpl B Barrott RHG Served 16 August 1955 to 3 September 1957 Died 2011, date unknown, aged 77 years approx. 53474430 LCpl JA Hipgrave RHG Served 1 July 1940 to 16 April 1946 Date of death unknown, aged 89 years (approx)
23215703 SCpl RJ Scriven RHG/D Served 1 April 1958 to 3 November 1973 Died 27 October 2011, aged 82 years
305367 CoH JB Pullee RHG Served 18 October 1933 to 26 November 1945 Date of death unknown, aged approximately 94 years
306734 Tpr F Webster RHG Served 1 December 1944 to 1 March 1946 Died 28 October 2011, aged 85 years
319792 LSgt H Sherratt 1RD Served 26 January 1938 to 29 June 1946 Date of death unknown, aged 89 years approx
23875670 Cpl PJ Mullins RHG/D Served 1 January 1961 to 31 October 1970 Died 6 November 2011, aged 71 years
Major-General Sir Roy Redgrave Late Royal Horse Guards Extracted from obituaries in The Times, The Daily Telegraph, and from Col HPD Massey’s notes It would be pointless to pretend other than that Roy Redgrave could give a startling impression on ﬁrst acquaintance. His relationship to the Redgrave acting family - Sir Michael was his father’s half-brother - might lead one to expect a certain theatrical air, but he was distinctly mannered in stance and speech, especially speech. Those who thought he might be joking discovered he spoke in no other way and there was more than a touch of steel
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306911 Cpl B Dowling RHG Served 7 May 1947 to 10 January 1953 Died 5 December 2011, aged 82 years
about him. He won his Military Cross in most honourable circumstances - saving one of his men from death under ﬁre. In the closing days of the war in Europe the 1st Household Cavalry Regiment, in which he was an armoured car troop commander, was providing part of the reconnaissance screen for the Guards Armoured Division during the advance from Bremen to the old Hanseatic port of Stade on the Elbe Estuary. His troop was ordered to pause on the outskirts of a village until another troop caught up to allow the advance to continue. Redgrave climbed out and was using a rear wheel for a purpose for which rear wheels are sometimes used when two Panzerfaust rockets hit the car. From the ditch, he saw his second car reversing at speed into the village and his own on ﬁre with the head of the radio operator moving in the turret. Despite some well-aimed bursts of Spandau ﬁre, he climbed back on to the burning vehicle, got hold of the operator under his armpits and dragged him out on to the engine cover where Redgrave was hit in the leg. The pair rolled off the car into the ditch, from where he established that the driver of the car was dead and the radio operator had lost a leg. After making the wounded man as comfortable as he could, Redgrave crawled
back to the village via the ditch, brought out a half-track to recover the casualty, withdrew the rest of his troop under vigorous enemy ﬁre and only then reported to the regimental aid post to have his wound dressed. Roy Michael Frederick Redgrave was the son of Robin Roy Redgrave and his wife Micheline Capsa. He was born in the Athénée Palace Hotel, Bucharest, where his mother - the daughter of a Romanian general - checked in with just minutes to spare before her conﬁnement. His early boyhood was spent at the Capsa country home at Doftana, some 60 miles north of the capital, where his father owned a company carrying out contract drilling for oil companies in Romania. He was educated at Sherborne and enlisted in the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) in 1943 as a trooper. He volunteered in order to get into the war before it was over without any thought of becoming a professional soldier. Indeed, after the incident in which his armoured car was incinerated he characteristically remarked: “I had my whiff of war and did not ever want to smell it again.” But he found he liked the life, served in postwar Germany with the Royal Horse Guards patrolling the demarcation line between the British and Soviet zones of occupied Germany and became interested in the gathering of intelligence. It is unlikely that after attending the Canadian Staff College course at Kingston, Ontario, Redgrave’s card was marked to suggest he might one day become a general. He was certainly enterprising but his refreshing disregard for the concerns of higher authority seemed likely to become a stumbling block. But his uninhibited approach and undoubted charm came to his aid as he advanced up the military tree at a brisk pace. He commanded a squadron of The Blues in Cyprus during the Eoka terrorist campaign and was mentioned in dispatches, served as the military assistant to the Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe. In 1962 at the age of 37 he took command of the Mounted Regiment then housed in the old 1880 barracks in Hyde Park. With the help of the then Silverstick, David Tabor, and following a ministerial visit he managed to achieve the drawing up of plans for the current barracks. In later life as he passed the new barracks in a taxi from time to time, Alexander tells me that he used to put his head in his hands, look at the tower block and say, “Am I really responsible for that? Jeepers! What have I done?” While he was there he had a miniature Pekinese with one eye called Daffodil. This dog used to precede him round barracks leading to soldiers calling out, “Eyes down, ‘ere comes Daffodil.” Some of you will have read his book, The Adventures of Colonel Daffodil. He did not altogether enjoy the formality of Commanding Ofﬁcers’ Orders when offending soldiers were marched in. So he changed things while the Regtl Cpl Maj, Bill Stringer, was on leave. When he returned the RCM found that those due to be seen by the Colonel were lined up outside waiting for him to call out “Who’s next?” - the idea being that the next man would march in relatively informally on a self-selecting basis. The situation went back to normal after the RCM called out, “I am, Colonel” and marched himself in! After which, the normal format was resumed. The post of Commander RAC of the 3rd Division in the rank of brigadier provided fresh opportunity to display his talent for staged productions. He revived the Tidworth Tattoo, Wiltshire, attracting huge crowds, and the Tidworth threeday event. His concern that the Army should maintain close touch with the local community and its interests was further demonstrated when, as commander of the Royal Armoured Corps training centre in Bovington, Dorset, he arranged for
footpaths across the ranges - closed for half a century - to be opened to the public. His ﬁnal two appointments in the Army were both exceptionally high proﬁle and regarded as being among the plums of major-generals’ commands: Berlin and Hong Kong. In fact he was well suited to the former appointment as he spoke ﬂuent French, German and Russian. News of his appointment was greeted by the Berlin press with a front-page photograph of him in uniform alongside one of his half-cousin Vanessa Redgrave posing naked - from the ﬁlm Blow-Up. He took this in his stride and, in a Berlin then still divided by the hated wall and with tenuous lines of communication through East Germany to the outside world, proved a commandant well liked and respected by the Allied garrison and population alike. On a visit to Spandau Prison, Rudolf Hess told him that he was the 14th British commandant to have done so but the ﬁrst to have spoken to him in German. When the chimney of his Berlin house - the Villa Lemm caught ﬁre he put it out by climbing on the roof. The Berlin press gave the incident front-page coverage illustrated by a photograph of him together with another of a topless young lady with no relevance to him or to the incident. He was the ﬁrst Commander of British Forces Hong Kong in recent times below the rank of lieutenant general and not already knighted. This called for some aplomb in a highly prosperous community very conscious of style and position. No one could say that Redgrave lacked self-conﬁdence or a certain style. He may have been rather different from what Hong Kong had grown used to in its local general but his appointment as KBE on giving up the job was widely welcomed. In retirement he threw himself into a variety of work and travel. He was Grand Master of the Knights Templar for a time; he was chairman of the Hammersmith & Fulham Health Authority and the Charing Cross Hospital special trustees. He travelled to China, Tibet and Greenland and, in 1999, he and his surviving sister returned to their childhood home at Doftana to ﬁnd it a dilapidated summer home for children, but both recaptured the magic of their childhood in the Carpathians. He married Valerie, daughter of Major Arthur Wellesley, in 1953, who died last year. He is survived by two sons, Alexander and Robin, who with their families gave a splendid memorial service.
Major Robin Wordsworth Late The Life Guards Robin Wordsworth died on 17th September at the age of 89. He had a long career joining The Life Guards in February 1942 and retiring in May 1965. He served with 2 HCR during the war and was Adjt of the Inn’s of Court & City Yeomanry from 1947-1949. Reportedly, he was known to all unofﬁcially as Nipper. As a captain serving in the Canal Zone, Egypt, he and his squadron were training, or ‘on scheme’ as they said then. This trip took them into the western desert, which still then had active mineﬁelds. While on their way in Daimler armoured cars, a rather nasty sand storm blew up as they were travelling through a mineﬁeld, which was marked by tapes. Visibility rapidly deteriorated, and it did not take long before a packet was separated from the regiment and from the rest of C Squadron. The danger became apparent as a lone armoured car found itself somewhere in the mineﬁeld, without a clue where to go. Radio communications had failed; the commander had dropped and lost his compass in an attempt
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to take a reading. Cpl Ovens and Tpr Stagg decided to stay where they were until the sand storm had passed, starting the engine every so often, to keep the batteries charged, they spent a very uncomfortable night in a very sandy armoured car. The next morning, the sand storm gradually abated, and they were able to see something other than sand. There were a few poles stuck in the sand, one of which had on it’s top a petrol can. There was a number on this can, which was thought could be a map reference. As the storm abated they tried the radio and after some time were able to establish a reasonable signal, and managed to make contact with the rest of the squadron. Captain Wordsworth asked if they knew where we were, and they were able to answer with the details on the petrol can in the hope that this could be a useful and identiﬁable reference. This was veriﬁed as understood, and he told them that they were about forty miles away from the squadron, and that others were also adrift. He told them to wait until he reached them. After a couple of hours, they saw a jeep coming towards them, and identiﬁed Nipper. He had navigated to their position using his compass, and made two soldiers very pleased to see him and grateful. His brother was Major Christopher Wordsworth who died in Dec 2009, and his nephew Jim was a subaltern in The Life Guards in the 1980s. His wife Maureen pre-deceased him. He leaves a son Andrew and a daughter Caroline to whom we extend our sincere condolences.
Captain Sir Nicholas Beaumont Late The Life Guards Extracts from The Daily Telegraph Nicky Beaumont, who has died aged 81, was Clerk of the Course at Ascot for 25 years and one of the most popular ﬁgures in horse racing. As Clerk of the Course, Beaumont was responsible not only for the smooth running of Ascot’s race meetings but also for ensuring that it continued on a sound ﬁnancial footing: in effect, therefore, he was also the chief executive, which is today a separate post in its own right. Edward Nicholas Canning Beaumont was born in London on December 14 1929, the third son of the 2nd Viscount Allendale and his wife Violet, daughter of Sir Charles Seely, 2nd Bt. Nicky’s father was Lord in Waiting to both George V and George VI, and the family – which had made its money in coal and lead mining – were extensive landowners in the northeast, with homes at Bretton Hall in Yorkshire, Bywell Hall near Newcastle upon Tyne, and Allenheads Hall near Hexham. In later life, Nicky would recall family picnics near Bretton Hall where the grass was black from the coal dust. The 2nd Lord Allendale was Master of the Badsworth Hunt, owned racehorses (including Woodburn, a winner of the Cesarewitch) and was senior steward of the Jockey Club. His son was therefore brought up with horses from his earliest years. From Ludgrove, Nicky went on to Eton, where he was in the
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same house as Humphrey Lyttleton, and on leaving school in 1948 joined The Life Guards, reaching the rank of Captain. He served in Germany, and came closest to seeing action when on board a ship that was about to sail for the Mediterranean in response to the Suez crisis; it was stood down at the last moment. On leaving the Army in 1960, he thought about opening a garden centre (gardens were one of the passions of his life), but abandoned the idea. Instead he gave the rest of his career to racing. In 1964 the Duke of Norfolk invited him to take the post of Assistant to the Clerk of the Course at Ascot. His ﬁrst year in the job saw tremendous storms at the Royal meeting which caused the racing to be abandoned. During a particularly heavy downpour, he saw one of the gatemen pursuing a woman who, to protect her hat, had pulled up her skirt to cover her head. The gateman remonstrated with her: “Madam, your bottom is showing.” The lady replied: “Yes, I know, but I bought this hat only yesterday, and I have had this bottom for 52 years.” As Clerk of the Course from 1969, Beaumont oversaw the introduction of National Hunt racing at Ascot; introduced a number of new races; and improved the drainage on the course. By the time he retired in 1994, it was generally agreed that Beaumont had allowed the course to move with the times without permitting changes that would have damaged Royal Ascot, in particular, as one of Britain’s premier sporting occasions. Another legacy of his tenure must be attributed to his wife, Ginny, who in 1977 inaugurated the community singing around the bandstand which has become one of Royal Ascot’s most popular features. During the years in which they lived in Ascot he played a prominent part in the local community, as president of the local football, golf, tennis and environmental clubs as well as of the local St John Ambulance. After leaving Ascot he became director of racing at Newcastle and pursued his lifelong interests of shooting and ﬁshing. He was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for Berkshire in 1982 and for Northumberland in 1996. He was Vice-Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire from 1989 to 1994. He died on June 22, after being involved in a road accident near Hexham. His wife Ginny had died in 2007, and he is survived by their two sons.
Captain PAWB Everard Late The Royal Horse Guards The sad news came that Tony Everard died early on Sunday morning 18th September 2011 at his home Ratcliffe Hall. He was a remarkable man and a visionary of his time, steering his family company as Chairman throughout the turbulent aftermath of the Second World War and the plethora of brewery takeovers during the sixties and seventies. P A W B Everard was born in 1922 at the family home, Ratcliffe Hall, and was educated at Eton College. In 1941 he joined the Army through the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, and took a Regular Commission with the Royal Horse Guards, serving in France. When his father, Sir W Lindsay Everard, became ill in 1947, he resigned his commission and joined a Brewery Company in Great Yarmouth for a period of
training, after which he was appointed a Director of Everards Brewery Limited. In 1948 he became a Director of John Sarson & Son Limited, wine merchants. On the death of his father in 1949 he was appointed Chairman of both companies and was elected President in 1978, an ofﬁce he held until his death. He was a Rural District Councillor for 25 years, serving on each committee and chaired Parish Meetings during that period. He was appointed High Sheriff of Leicestershire in 1964. He was tremendously interested in a wide variety of sporting activities, particularly: Squash representing Leicestershire; Golf ; Skiing, being in the Kandahar Ski Club ‘Gold K’ ; Sailing on Rutland Water; Autosport, active in sports car racing in the 1950’s with Aston Martin Cars ; Motorcycling, a life-long enthusiast and in 1980 founded the Donington 100 Motorcycle Group and served as its Chairman and later its President; Flying ﬁxed wing and helicopters; Rowing, kayaking, and Fighting kites. In addition to the above, he was also a farmer, enjoying walking and dogs. He embodied the best of family custodianship by not only transforming his brewing business into becoming more family friendly, overseeing the move to Castle Acres in 1982 but also in guiding the transition from one generation to the next with such foresight. Indeed, when he handed over he put a sign on his desk facing the entrance which read “A company prospers when its former Chairman turns up as infrequently as possible!” He lived life to the full, mostly writing the content for this obituary. He will be fondly remembered by all those people whose lives he touched but he never wanted anyone to mourn his passing. This is encapsulated by the words he wished to be conveyed in the announcement of his death “Do not grieve just rejoice for a full life.”
Captain John Robert Walpole Palmer Late The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) by Geoffrey van Cutsem, formerly The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) John was born in Ireland in 1943 where his parents Colonel Eric and Lady Anne Palmer were stationed. They all returned to the family home Rosemoor in North Devon a year later where John was to grow up. Rosemoor was on the River Torridge and had good salmon and sea trout ﬁshing and John grew up to be a very knowledgeable and skilled ﬁsherman. Rosemoor subsequently became famous for the beautiful garden which Anne Palmer created and gave to the R.H.S. As a boy John loved riding and participated in numerous hunter trials, chases and hunts so it was perhaps not entirely surprising that after going to Eton he joined The Blues and was commissioned in 1962 and sent out to Herford in Germany where he joined A Sqn as a troop leader.
He became Gunnery Ofﬁcer and won the Gunnery competition in our Saladin Armoured Cars. In 1965 there was a call for a Volunteer Squadron to go out to the Far East to join The Life Guards, as President Sukarno of Indonesia had tried to seize British North Borneo and war had broken out. By the time The Blues Sqn under Maj Jim Eyre (later Maj Gen Sir James Eyre) had arrived at Singapore, the war was over, so most of our time was spent on jungle warfare training and free time on water skiing, something John excelled at. John left the Army in 1968 and went off to work as a student on an estate in Perthshire called Dirnanean which belonged to Francis Balfour a family friend, who was so impressed by John, that having no children of his own, subsequently left the estate to John. Whilst living at Dirnanean John married ﬁrstly Carol Atkinson Clark and had two daughters Melanie and Emma, then in 1979 Alison Allinson to whom he remained happily married for 32 years. Dirnanean was a 6,000 acre Highland Estate with hill farming and a grouse moor and John was an exceedingly generous host to his many friends including many old army friends. The moor was famous for a very steep drive known as Ben Earb or “cardiac hill” and over 100 brace of grouse were shot there in a day which in the 1970’s in Perthshire was special. Some years later John was to sell Dirnanean and moved to The Old Manse in Kirkmichael near by where he and Alison lived for the next 18 years. John developed two businesses in Scotland, one dealing with hill radio communications and the other selling the very successful light weight anti midge ﬁshing jackets known as Bugwear. He also got involved with a committee helping to run Perth Racecourse and he was responsible for entertaining and looking after visiting Owners and Trainers. In 2000 John and Alison moved South nearer to John’s roots to Kingston St Mary near Taunton and John got very involved with both his local hunt and Church. Sadly John did not always enjoy the best of health and ﬁnally succumbed to cancer in October 2011. John was a very kind person with time for everybody always interested in their latest gadget especially if connected to ﬁshing. He was a great mimic and raconteur and liked nothing better than an evening playing bridge with his friends. His Service of Thanksgiving in the local Church to which he had just donated a state of the art sound system was attended by nearly 300 people including many old Household Cavalrymen, he will be much missed by his many friends but most of all by his children and step children and devoted wife Alison.
Captain John Williams Late Royal Horse Guards John Williams, born in 1929, was Master of the Four Burrow Hounds in Cornwall from 1955 to 1978. He then moved to Herefordshire and farmed on the banks of the River Wye at Aramstone. He retained his hunting links by acting as a hunting reporter under the name of “Whipcord” for The Field and by acting as Chairman or President of the South Herefordshire Hunt until his death. John was extremely inﬂuential in the post war development of hound breeding; the Four Burrow Hounds being able to keep going during the war in a limited fashion because John was too young and his father had been severely wounded in the 191418 war. Notably the Duke of Beaufort entered 11 couple by Pleader (38) in 1944, hounds which were used by many masters in the post war world. In 1947-8 ten packs entered 30 couple
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by Four Burrow Stallion Hounds. In particular the Heythrop entered 6 ½ couple by Four Burrow Brigadier (43) in 1947 and four litters by Four Burrow Filbert (39) in 1948. These Brigadier and Filbert Bitches were to produce much of the foundation stock from which Captain Wallace was to develop the Heythrop into the inﬂuential pack they were to become. John came from a distinguished Cornish family and was the fourth of four generations to be Masters of the Four Burrow from 1857 to 1977 with one 15 year gap. His family were heavily involved in tin mining and engineering in Cornwall and were closely associated with Brunel in the construction of the Tunnels for the Greta Line, the building of the Tamar Bridge and the construction of the Plymouth Breakwaters. John recalled that an ancestor was winched up with Brunel as the Central span of the Tamar bridge was raised. Similarly the breakwaters were attempted a third time at his ancestor’s insistence and still remain in place today. He was intensely proud of his Cornish heritage and full of happy memories of his hunting life there. After the war he was Commissioned into The Blues (Royal Horse Guards) and served for some years in Germany. One of his roles was to guard Rudolf Hess in Berlin. He returned to London for mounted duties and was in the escort to the state coach at The Queen’s Coronation. He recalled “I sat on a horse in the inner courtyard of Buckingham Palace - behind me in two ranks was the 4th Division of the Sovereign’s Escort - 24 NCOs and men of the Royal Horse Guards. Behind them was the 3rd Division and to our right the 1st and 2nd Divisions (Life Guards). When we were in position the gold coach rolled up to the entrance to the Palace and behind it were 4 landaus or open carriages - ﬁrst out of the Palace came The Queen’s maids of honour who got into the last 3 landaus - they were followed by the Duke of Beaufort (master of the horse) and Lord Athlone who was in the uniform of the order of the Thistle in the ﬁrst one. The Duke of Edinburgh came out and got into the gold coach then Her Majesty came out - a tiny ﬁgure she stood there a commanding and immaculate ﬁgure. She surveyed Her Household Cavalry. I sat there, closer to Her than the length of a cricket pitch, and felt an admiration and subservience which has never left me. Then it was sections right, walk march - trot and we were out and on our way to the Abbey as the rain began to fall.” He left the Army to return to Cornwall in 1955 and joined his father in the Mastership of the Four Burrow Hounds. He is widely recognised as one of the dominant ﬁgures in Post War Hound breeding and as author of a book ”Riding to Hounds” (1988) which is still recognised as an authority. He was well known in Cornwall for the sport he showed. He was a fearless rider and broke a great many bones during this period. In 1977 he moved to Herefordshire to take up the reins of Aramstone Estate where he took over the farming and the stud founded by his father. However he was not to disappear into sleepy oblivion and contributed greatly to the rural life of Herefordshire. He founded the Herefordshire Country Fair now in its 32nd year, was heavily involved in the British
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Field Sports Society, was a committee member and founding member of the Wye Preservation Trust, he was a national hunting correspondent under the pseudonym of Whipcord, a Committee Member of the Country Landowners Association and a Trustee of Fawley Chapel which he helped to save from closure. He was a country man through and through and greatly concerned with the diminishing number of birds and butterﬂies in particular. He took the view that “Small woods, gorses, bogs and thorns are the kinds of cover most useful to wildlife of all kinds. The majority of such places are developed and cared for with one or other of our ﬁeld sports in mind. While shooting is usually responsible for the small woods; gorses, bogs and thorns often owe their existence to hunting.” John was a devoted family man. He leaves behind his second wife Lois, his two daughters Venetia and Caroline and stepdaughter Karen. He was intensely proud of them all. In particular his daughter Venetia’s training successes gave him much cause for pride and caused him to reﬂect “For the ﬁrst half of my life I was always known as my father’s son and now I am known as my daughter’s father”. Nothing could be further from the truth for this high achieving and modest countryman.
The Earl of Onslow Late The Life Guards From The Daily Telegraph
The Earl of Onslow, who died on May 14 aged 73, was an unrepentant standard bearer for the hereditary peerage, of which he was a colourful and conscientious example. After the bulk of the hereditaries were excluded in 1999 – a measure on which he “conscientiously abstained” – he was elected by Tory peers to continue a family involvement with Parliament dating back without a break to the 16th century. Michael Onslow described himself as “a hereditary peer who sees the illogicality of having any power over his fellow citizens just because his forebear got tight with the Prince Regent”, and in 1979 urged Margaret Thatcher to “reform the House of Lords before a Labour government did so stupidly”. His own preference was for two-thirds of the house to be elected. To some, Onslow was a caricature. He once confessed to a desire to “thrash most of my children most of the time”. He bought from Lord McAlpine a Roman artefact – a stone testicle – which he placed under his wife’s pillow. He once chased a runaway bullock down the A3 on horseback. Onslow brought hip hop, acid house and thrash metal to Radio 3, in a series of programmes explaining them. Twice – in 1999 and 2007 – he appeared on Have I Got News for You, holding his own against the resident satirists. He remarked that ‘The Church of England entered the 20th century opposed to buggery and in favour of fox hunting. By the start of the 21st century it had reversed its position.’ But he never fulﬁlled his ambition of declaiming Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire in instalments on Radio 1.
Politically, Onslow was generally liberal, though he noted: “As a Conservative, I am not dogmatic, because dogma and doctrine have a nasty habit of becoming embarrassing.” He opposed capital punishment; reminded Enoch Powell that he had been “one of the greatest encouragers of immigration” as Minister of Health; and helped defeat a move by Margaret Thatcher’s government to charge rural children for using school buses. Yet he spoke passionately against Archbishop Michael Ramsey’s attempts to modernise the Anglican liturgy, and voted against the Maastricht treaty.
Onslow rode Hallo Dandy to hounds for a time, but in 1994 the horse was seen in very poor condition in a ﬁeld at Clandon. Apprised of this, Shaw contacted Carrie Humble, founder of the Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Centre, and, with the support of Peter O’Sullevan, who had called the horse home at Aintree, Hallo Dandy was taken in and restored to health, eventually being put down at the ripe old age of 33. Onslow indignantly denied neglect, insisting to Horse and Hound that the animal had been “used for publicity in a very slanted way”.
Onslow succeeded to the earldom in 1971, just as Clandon Park in Surrey, the family seat until 15 years before, was reopened by the National Trust after a two-year makeover during which valuable paintings left by Hannah Gubbay, a member of the Sassoon family, were hung there.
Michael William Coplestone Dillon Onslow was born on February 28 1938, son of the 6th Earl and the former Pamela Dillon. The Onslow baronetcy dates back to the Restoration, and the earldom to 1801; as heir to the title, Michael was styled Viscount Cranley.
John Fowler, who carried out the renovation, reckoned it his most demanding project, after the 6th Earl’s batman unearthed a scrap of paper that turned out to be a 1779 inventory of how every room was furnished. Onslow had no regrets at moving out; in the big house his family had been “slaves to the servants”.
After Eton (he completed his education at the Sorbonne), Cranley served with The Life Guards for four years in Aden and Oman. An occasion when he parked his troop too close to the sea when they went swimming is best forgotten. In Arabia he discovered a ﬂair for photography, and in 1960 took it up professionally, being the only photographer allowed into a charity ball at the Sutton Place home of Paul Getty.
On the death of his father – a former Conservative chief whip in the Lords who had brieﬂy joined the Liberals – Onslow moved into the bailiff’s house on the estate and gave up being an insurance broker to farm the remaining 800 acres. He had ﬁrst shown his love of animals while at Eton by exhibiting canaries at Olympia; now he gave full vent to his passions for wildlife and country sports. Onslow hunted in Leicestershire with the Fernie and organised shoots on his own estate – one immortalised on television by his brother-inlaw, Auberon Waugh. When Mrs Thatcher’s government promoted the Wildlife and Countryside Bill, Onslow was one of its best-informed and most constructive critics. He joined forces with the farm workers’ union to condemn “rogue employers” who forced labourers out of tied cottages, then sold them at high prices to commuters. But in 1985 he was ousted as president of the Open Spaces Society for defending the Army’s right to train on Salisbury Plain. Yet the countryside and its denizens brought out Onslow’s eccentric side. In 1979 it took 15 policemen, ﬁreﬁghters, farmers and passers-by to free his stallion Miltiades after he rode it into a bog. Weeks later he rode Miltiades to the front door of the former nude model Vivien Neves, who lived in the village, to offer support against the local council after her cottage had been hit by removal vans. “What a brick!” she observed. After the hurricane of 1987, Charles Church Developments sent Onslow £1,000 toward replacing his fallen beech trees at Clandon. He refused to pose with the cheque, as it had mistakenly been made out to the National Trust. The company’s chairman said: “If we’d known he would behave like that, frankly we’d have chosen someone else.” Onslow attracted adverse publicity after he was lent Hallo Dandy, winner of the 1984 Grand National, as a hunter by the horse’s owner, Richard Shaw. When one of the papers reported that he had paid for the horse, Onslow rang the journalist and called him a “drunken, lying hack”.
Two years later he moved into insurance, signalling his arrival in the City by losing his pet monkey by the Underground line at Aldersgate, from which a policeman retrieved it. He was no stranger to the Lords when he succeeded to the earldom. On his ﬁrst visit he had sat on the steps of the throne next to Churchill; when the great man asked him the time, he had to confess his watch had stopped. From the outset Onslow took an active part. He declared that Ian Smith was in direct treason against the Crown; urged the government to let farmers allow myxomatosis on to their land to keep down rabbits; and demanded action against corruption which resulted in only one of every 13 blankets sent to Bangladesh reaching its intended recipient. He made friends across the party divide, and in 1975 went into the Strangers’ Bar with the Labour chief whip Bob Mellish. When Mellish ordered a drink for Onslow, the barman – the famously obtuse Ted Mitchell – refused, arguing that only life peers who had been MPs could be served. Mitchell was sacked, then reinstated. After a man who broke into the Queen’s bedroom and engaged her in conversation went unpunished, Onslow introduced, with government backing, a Bill creating an offence of criminal trespass. He said it was odd that an intruder could be prosecuted for sitting on the bed of the Russian ambassador, but not that of the Queen. The Bill passed the Lords, then ran out of time. Onslow spoke out against “passive racial discrimination” in the Household Cavalry, saying that in 30 years he had never seen a black face. He persuaded the government to ease the formation of employee-run companies; campaigned against the overzealous interpretation of EU rules to force the closure of dozens of abattoirs; and split the Beefsteak club by proposing Norman Tebbit for membership. When Blair moved to reform the Lords, Onslow agreed change was needed but disliked New Labour’s plans. He was pleased with the outcome negotiated by Lord Cranborne
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(which earned Cranborne the sack from William Hague). By Onslow’s estimation 60 per cent of active hereditaries had survived, with the Conservatives’ position strengthened. Lord Onslow was at various times High Steward of Guildford, and a governor of University College, Buckingham, and of Guildford Royal Grammar School. He married, in 1964, Robin Bullard, daughter of US Army Major Robert Lee Bullard III and of Lady Aberconway, with whom he had a son and two daughters. His son, Viscount Cranley (Rupert Charles William Bullard Onslow), born in 1967, succeeds to the earldom.
Lt Julian Charles Lewis Jenkinson Late The Royal Dragoons by George Courtauld
Julian was born to Barbara, the Honourable Mrs Jenkinson, on her 21st birthday, on 28th of April 1926 at Claridge’s Hotel, London. He thus had a most welcome and auspicious start to his long and interesting life. Robert, his father, was the owner of Knaphill Nurseries in Buckinghamshire. Julian’s childhood there must have created his love and immense knowledge of gardening and plants. However, much of his early life was spent with his mother and stepfather, James Baird. His adolescence was during the war, when his family, like many others, was kept moving around, dodging German bombs. His sister Clare said that this persistently nomadic life was very unsettling and she thought that the later security of nearly 50 years at Follyfaunts with Diana was a very beneﬁcial inﬂuence to his feeling of conﬁdence and well-being. He was educated at Cothill then to Eton, where he went to Littleton’s house. Mr Littleton was known for producing young men of excellence in both learning and behaviour. Julian then went on to Sandhurst. He was commissioned into the Royal Dragoons in January 1945, in the last months of the war. He obviously wouldn’t ﬁt into a tank, and fortunately his squadron was equipped with armoured cars: their main job as the war was ending was scouting. After that they became part of the BAOR – British Army on the Rhine, and Julian was involved with ‘mopping up’ procedures, some of which included the very unpleasant task of sending prisoners back to Stalinist-occupied Europe. His Eton and Army friend, Archie Smith-Maxwell, said that he noticed that ‘whatever the situation, Julian behaved with complete decorum. He was not a prig, he was just an oldfashioned, perfect, gentleman’. In December 1948 he left the Army and Germany - he arrived in England accompanied by a small rough-haired German, a dachshund called Brownie - the ﬁrst of many. He travelled round Europe as a salesman for Gillette (in Sicily he was unwise enough to choose as his agent a man who not only represented a competitor but was also the leader of the Maﬁa). Before marriage he was strikingly admired by the girls Audrey Hepburn was one of his conquests - but he eventually had the great sense to pick on the delightful Diana Catherine Baird. They were married in 1953. He left Gillette and then took a variety of other jobs (basically in sales and marketing). Then in 1961 he started his own business - with naked ladies, moulding ﬁbre-glass and plastic for shop window models. He then founded VERINE which made and sold plastic and ﬁbre-glass garden ornaments, the ﬁrst designs being moulded from the garden ornaments of his
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grandfather, Lord Harcourt. Over the years this expanded into architectural mouldings then gas ﬁres. Julian’s particular talent, apart from his initiative, drive and perfection, was his brilliance at marketing and selling. The people at Verine from top to bottom were incredibly loyal and many spent effectively their whole working life there. He was well like by his staff, they trusted him as an honourable man who kept his word. Julian had an intense love for his family he was loved by many generations a loving husband to Diana for 58 years, an adored father to Dermot, Karen and Laura, and equally an adored and admired grandfather to Emily, Oliver, Sophie, William, Nicholas, India and Scarlett, and to his very many friends. The motto of his old regiment was SPECTEMUR AGENDO - Let us be judged by our deeds. A great and great-hearted man, he will be well judged.
Lieutenant Colonel George Edwin Evans OBE ARCM psm Late The Blues and Royals George Evans was born on 6 January 1926 in the small mining town of Pontypool. He began playing the cornet at the age of seven, his elder brothers playing trombone, euphonium and tenor horn, and he played his ﬁrst solo at in the Methodist Central Hall, Newport, at the age of 11. He later became assistant solo cornet in the Coventry City Salvation Army Band. George was conscripted in December 1944, joining the Somerset Light Infantry at Colchester. At the end of his initial training he was asked to perform at a company concert, playing Post Horn Galop, Zelda and a ballad Trees, accompanied by the Band of 2nd Battalion the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry. Private Evans was due to be posted to India to a Riﬂe Company but returned from embarkation leave to ﬁnd that Bandmaster Taylor had arranged for him to be drafted to the Band instead. This period included a six month tour of Palestine where he spent his 21st birthday on railway guard duty. He left the Army at the end of his period of conscription. Mr Taylor persuaded him to re-enlist with the Band of the 3rd Carabineers (Prince of Wales’s Dragoon Guards) and he joined them at Tidworth in 1947. He played rugby for the Regiment and rose to the rank of Trumpet Major. He was also at this time occupying the solo cornet chair with Morris Motors Band under Harry Mortimer. The Band’s Kneller Hall Inspection led to him being asked to become a student bandmaster much earlier than he had planned as Lieutenant Colonel Meredith Roberts was keen to swell the class with the best trumpet players in preparation for the forthcoming Coronation. Student Bandmaster Evans took his place with the Kneller Hall Trumpeters on the organ loft in Westminster Abbey on 2 June 1953 for what must have been one of the best views of the whole ceremony. He later became Band Sergeant Major at Kneller Hall.
On 12 September 1956 he was appointed Bandmaster of the Royal Dragoons (1st Dragoons), joining them in Germany and later serving with them in Malaya. He was commissioned on 25 January 1966 as Director of Music of the Royal Artillery Mounted Band, serving with them in Aldershot, Germany and Larkhill. Captain Evans was appointed Director of Music of the Blues and Royals (Royal Horse Guards and 1st Dragoons) in 1973, thus returning to his earlier Regiment following amalgamation. He said it was like coming home as he knew half the Regiment already. He spent a month with King’s Troop, Royal Horse Artillery for some individual equestrian tuition prior to joining the Household Cavalry riding course and, on completion, took part in Beating Retreat on Horse Guards Parade later that year. He was promoted to Major on 25 July 1975. Early in 1978 Major Evans was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and appointed Chief Instructor and Director of Music at the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall. Amongst the high proﬁle engagements in this appointment was conducting the Kneller Hall Trumpeters in St. Paul’s Cathedral on 29 July 1981 at the wedding of HRH Charles, Prince of Wales, and Lady Diana Spencer. He was Musical Director for the great Military Musical Pageants at Wembley Stadium in 1979 and 1981, conducting massed bands numbering well over a thousand musicians, in such works as Capriccio Italien and 1812, as well as a musical representation of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift to mark the Centenary. Colonel Evans was appointed OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours of 1982. He retired from the Army on 6 January 1983 but remained at Kneller Hall as Professor of Conducting and Curator of the Museum, until the end of 1990. He was appointed a Vice President of the International Military Music Society on 1 January 1980, who have a long association with Kneller Hall, becoming the ﬁrst Branch President of the Society’s United Kingdom Branch in 1998. He continued with his golf well into retirement, capping on his achievements of having won the Guards Golﬁng Society Cup, Army Golﬁng Society’s Championship Medal and the Royal Artillery Prize during his time. He passed away on 21 March 2011, aged 85, after a long illness. George is survived by his wife Joy and two daughters to whom we offer our heartfelt condolences.
Captain Chris Sayer MBE Late The Blues and Royals Christopher John Sayer was born in a private nursing home in Sidcup, Kent on 24th of April 1947, a child of the post World War 2 era. His early months were spent living with his parents at his grandmother’s house at 13 Eltham Green Road, Eltham, later moving to the families ﬁrst home, 26 Windmill Lane Long Ditton in Surrey. He attended St Andrews secondary School in Cobham, where he harboured dreams of becoming an actor. In his own words, he achieved very little at school excelling only in amateur dramatics, performing in numerous school plays and operas. Aged 15 years and 3 months he left school after four years attendance without any qualiﬁcations, intent on pursuing a career as an actor. However his father was not overly enthusiastic about a 15 year old boy attempting to become an actor in the 1960,s so instead he was encouraged
to seek suitable employment that would ﬁnance his acting ambitions for the future. So in the summer of 1962 Chris joined the Junior Leaders Regiment Royal Armoured Corps as a Junior Trooper. He proved to be a natural right from the start and threw himself into the two year course with great enthusiasm. He especially enjoyed all the adventure training conducted in Devon for two weeks every term. Here he learnt rock climbing, abseiling, potholing, shooting the rapids on the River Dart and much more. He went aboard the mighty HMS Eagle aircraft carrier which was in port at Plymouth in 1962 and was amongst the few Junior Leaders to sample the delights of target towing for the Naval Guns at King Alfred gunnery school. This was done by motor torpedo boats towing a target ½ a mile to the rear of the boat however due to the rough seas the boys were mostly below suffering from seasickness. Chris was one of the few that actually managed to line the decks on entering harbour when the runs were complete. At 16 he was a fully qualiﬁed Centurion Main Battle Tank Gunner / Radio Operator and later went on to drive the vehicle. Just before passing out Chris decided to train for P Company and this proved to be a good decision as he qualiﬁed as a parachutist with distinction. Arriving in Herford Germany in Jan 65 Chris was full of expectation when posted to C Squadron. The next day he went before Major TNPW Burberry for his welcoming interview. He was asked what trades he had and after proudly telling of his tally of Centurion qualiﬁcations he was somewhat deﬂated when told he was no use as the regiment were equipped with Saladin Armoured Cars. This was put right over the following few months on conversion courses. Assigned to 4th Troop as Ct Gavin Tweedie’s gunner/operator, and was well regarded. In 1967 Chris met Brenda Fox; they both originated from Cobham and both attended the same church youth club. On the 18th April 1970 Chris married Brenda who supported Chris throughout his Army career and they went on to have two boys named Mark and Daniel, both grew up to be serving Police Ofﬁcers, a source of great pride. Over the following years Chris rose steadily through the ranks serving in Pirbright as an instructor and then back to the regiment in Windsor. He served in Cyprus with A Squadron and also back in Germany where the regiment after amalgamation. He became a Squadron Corporal Major under Major Hywel Davies. They formed a very strong bond and together ran a very happy Squadron which was to reap beneﬁts a few years later. On promotion to WO1 he served in the multi-national force in the Sinai, and then as GCM Tidworth Garrison. His dream was realised in December 1985 when he was appointed Regimental Corporal Major of the Service Regiment in Detmold Germany, delighted to serve Lt Col Hywel Davies who was the Commanding Ofﬁcer. One particular morning the RHQ ofﬁcers heard the RCM yelling out of his window at the American ofﬁcer attached as a Squadron Leader. The Squadron was returning to barracks from a run and the Sqn Ldr had them chanting US Army style which upset the RCM. The exchange went as follows: “Sir … you are commanding a British Squadron and they do not chant.”
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“Mr Sayer, I will do what I want with my Squadron.” “Oh no you won’t … Sir !” The matter was later resolved in Col Hywel’s ofﬁce, and the Sqn never chanted again. After receiving his commission he was posted once again to the Guards Depot in Pirbright, and thereafter to the Royal Yeomanry as an Admin Ofﬁcer at RHQ. This was the start of 13 very happy years serving with an outstanding TA Regiment, being recognised with the award of the MBE Jan 00 New Year’s Honours list. On 28th Mar 02 Chris took on a new challenge becoming a member of The Queen’s Body Guard of The Yeomen of the Guard, his ﬁrst duty being Maundy Service at Canterbury Cathedral. Thereafter duties included the Vigil for Her Majesty The Queen Mother, and The Queen’s Golden Jubilee Parade, occasions and duties that appealed to the actor in him. The family remember his delight when he found out that WH Smiths were selling postcards of him marching alongside the Queen’s Golden State coach in full Yeoman uniform. He was then lucky to pick up as the Welfare Offr for HCMR where he was both helpful, sympathetic, efﬁcient and appreciated. His appointment coincided with a visit to the Regiment’s new married quarter patch by the Minister for the Armed Forces and Chris was asked by the HQ to present the patch. This he did with gusto and when the HQ LONDIST Staff arrived in Putney they were greeted with a wonderfully stage managed performance. Children were on every apparatus in the play park, wives were sitting around drinking coffee together smiling broadly and ﬂats were immaculate and open for Min AF’s viewing. Min AF was delighted as was the MP for Putney. In the summer of 2010 Chris attended the Freedom of Purbeck Parade in Wareham Dorset, and granted to the Junior Leaders Regiment. Chris’s illness was beginning to take its toll at this stage but he was determined not to let it show, and took a full part in the day, his last parade. He fought his illness with the usual Chris Sayer courage and was admired by his many friends for it.
CoH John Davis Late The Royal Dragoons and The Blues and Royals by Mr D Boorman (formerly 17/21L) John Davis died on 29th September 2011, whilst on a touring holiday north of Perth in Australia, aged 68. John had enlisted as an 18 year old in the summer of 1961. Following basic and trade training he joined the 1st Royal Dragoons in Malaya for the latter half of the Regiment’s tour as part of Far Eastern Land Forces (FARELF). He returned with the Regiment in 1962 to the delights of Tidworth and conversion to tanks. Something of a shock to the system of a regiment hitherto accustomed to wheels as opposed to tracks.
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However, having completed platform conversion John, as part of C Squadron, was quickly posted to Cyprus as the troubles erupted on the island and was immediately back in a familiar armoured car based role, a conversion that took a couple of days to unwind the months of heavy armour training! The role in Cyprus quickly evolved into a UN role and C Squadron returned to England taking up the RAC Demonstration Squadron role on Salisbury Plain. In 1965 John moved with the Regiment to Detmold and 20 Armoured Brigade where he served in C Squadron until 1971, a period that encompassed the amalgamation with the Royal Horse Guards (the Blues) and the formation of The Blues and Royals. In 1969 John married Christine and together they shared 42 years of marriage. John left the Army in 1973 following 2 years service as a permanent staff instructor with No. 7 Cadet Training Team based in Maidstone Kent. He had served from July 1961-March 1967 with The Royal Dragoons, and then from March 1969-August 1973 with The Blues and Royals. Following Army service John and Christine settled in Kent. Scott, their son, was born in 1974 and Inge, their daughter followed close behind in 1976. In 1985 the family emigrated to Perth Australia where John worked for many years as construction manager on numerous building projects in the region. John and Christine both retired in 2003 and enjoyed many expeditions into the bush and wilder parts of Western Australia, and it was during one such expedition that John died.
NOTICES Information for members of both The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals Associations Communication Correspondence for both Associations should be addressed to: The Honorary Secretary (LG or RHG/D Assn) Home Headquarters Household Cavalry, Combermere Barracks Windsor, Berkshire SL4 3DN Gen ofﬁce: 01753 755297 LG Assn Secretary: 01753 755229 RHG/D Assn Secretary: 01753 755132 Fax: 01753 755161 E-Mail for Home HQ is: email@example.com E-Mail for Secretary LG Assn is: firstname.lastname@example.org E-Mail for Secretary RHG/D Assn is: email@example.com Recruiting and Admission procedures for In-Pensioners Royal Hospital Chelsea The Royal Hospital Chelsea are currently reviewing their recruiting and admission procedures as they now believe there may be some senior citizens with military experience who might be eligible to become InPensioners but who are not aware of the eligibility criteria or what being a Chelsea Pensioner means. To be eligible for admission as a Chelsea Pensioner, a candidate must be: • •
Over 65 years of age Either a former non-commissioned ofﬁcer or soldier of the British Army; or a former ofﬁcer of the British Army who served for at least 12 years in the ranks before obtaining a commission; or have been awarded a disablement pension while serving in the ranks. Able to live independently in the sheltered accommodation (known as Long Wards). The Royal Hospital does not usually accept direct entries in to the Inﬁrmary. Free of any ﬁnancial obligation to support a spouse or family.
If you are in receipt of an Army Service Pension or War Disability Pension you will be required to surrender it upon entry to the Royal Hospital. Please note that if your Army Service or War Disability Pension does not meet a minimum threshold you will be required to ‘top-up’ to that amount, providing it does not place you in ﬁnancial difﬁculty.
If you have access to the internet more information can be found here: http://www.chelsea-pensioners. co.uk/becoming-a-chelsea-pensionerbrochure Or you may ring for more information on 020 7881 5204 Change of Home Address Members are requested to inform us, through Home Headquarters Household Cavalry, of any change in your address. Every year both Associations lose touch with a number of members who have failed to notify us of those changes. Any correspondence returned will result in that member being placed in the non-effective part of the database. Your E-Mail Addresses! Notiﬁcation of changes to your E-mail address is as important as changes to your postal address. Please keep us informed of these also. Regimental Items for Sale Various items with the Regimental Cipher are available from the PRI shop at Combermere Barracks. The shop manager - Mr Mick Ollington - can be contacted on 01753 755271. The Household Cavalry Museum Shop at Horse Guards can be contacted on 020 7930 3070 or you can visit their website at www.householdcavalrymuseum.org.uk Websites The ‘Ofﬁcial’ Household Cavalry Website can be found at: www.army.mod.uk/armoured/ regiments/1627.aspx ARMYNET ArmyNet is the serving Army’s private Website to which Association members have now been given access. To open an account with ArmyNet, non serving members must ﬁrst register with Captain R Hennessy-Walsh on 01753 755229 or email that request to him at: firstname.lastname@example.org www.theoldoaktree.net A website for former members of The Life Guards. To register follow the link above. www.theseniorcavalryclub.proboards.com A Bulletin Board for Household Cavalrymen. register follow the link
former To above.
Household Cavalry Information site run by Peter Ashman: www.householdcavalry.info
The Queen’s Birthday Parade & Reviews The Queen’s Birthday Parade will be held on Saturday 16th June 2012 with the Colonels’ Review on 9th June and the Major General’s Review on 2nd June. A limited number of tickets for the Inner Line of Sentries (standing only) will be available for members through your respective Honorary Secretary. Tickets cannot be purchased through Home Headquarters Household Cavalry. Applications to attend the Parade in the seated stands should be sent in January and February only to: The Brigade Major, Headquarters Household Division, Horse Guards, Whitehall, London SW1A 2AX Combined Cavalry Parade and Service The 88th Combined Cavalry Old Comrades Parade and Service will be held in Hyde Park on Sunday 20th May 2012. Members of each Association should assemble in Broad Walk at 1030 hrs on the grass behind their Regimental Marker Board. Dress will be lounge suits and medals (not miniatures). Due to the security arrangements, members should give themselves plenty of time to get to the Assembly area. Members are invited to Hyde Park Barracks after the parade but admission will only be by ticket available from your respective Honorary Secretary. Helpful Contacts The following is a list of organisations which members may ﬁnd useful for future reference. The Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund www.operationalcasualtiesfund.co.uk Veterans-UK (0800 169 2277) www.veterans-uk.info email@example.com Royal Windsor Visitors Information Bureau Enquiries: 01753 743900 Accommodation: 01753 743907 firstname.lastname@example.org
Those visiting Windsor, either for Regimental functions, or any other reason, may wish to know that a Travelodge is now open offering rooms at very competitive rates. They can be contacted on 0871 984 6331 or their website at: http://www.travelodge.co.uk/ find_a_hotel/hotel/hotel_id/329/ WindsorCentral We are in the process of identifying
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‘Friends’ of the Household Cavalry who might be willing to offer up a bed or two during Association Dinners. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission They have an excellent website which can be searched using basic details, for information about the ﬁnal resting place of war dead at home and overseas. Their site can be found at www.cwgc.org ESHRA (Ex-Service Homes Referral Agency) The role of ESHRA is to supply information and advice on both private and ex-Service Care Homes. This includes the location of the homes, general advice on funding and care assessments, and the services that the homes can provide i.e. respite and convalescent care.
SSAFA Forces Help – Recruitment SSAFA Forces Help need more volunteers from each Association to be Casework Supporters who are visitors, treasurers, administrators and fundraisers. SSAFA Forces Help volunteers are there to provide practical help, advice and friendship to all serving and ex-serving men, women and their families. More than 85,000 call on the charity every year. Training is given (2 days), and out-of-pocket expenses are paid. Job satisfaction is guaranteed. If you can spare a little time for a ‘comrade’ please contact: Branch Recruitment Ofﬁce 19 Queen Elizabeth Street London, SE1 2LP Telephone: 020 7463 9223 who will put you in touch with your nearest team or make contact through
Contact Details: ESHRA, The Royal British Legion, 48 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ZR. Tel: 0207 839 4466. email@example.com www.eshra.com
Ofﬁcers’ Association (OA) and OA, Scotland Helps ex-ofﬁcers in ﬁnancial distress, provides homes for disabled ofﬁcers and families, and operates a residential home in Devon. It also assists exOfﬁcers to ﬁnd suitable employment after leaving the Service. They can be contacted in England on 020 7389 5219 and in Scotland on 0131 557 2782 or their website at: www.ofﬁcersassociation.org.uk
The Royal British Legion (TRBL) TRBL is the UK’s largest ex-service organisation with some 570,000 members. One of its objects is to promote the relief of need and to promote the education of all those who are eligible, their spouses, children and dependants. If you need help, you can contact the local TRBL branch near you (number in the local phone book), or the national Legion help line on 08457 725 725 or visit their website at: www.britishlegion.org.uk SSAFA Forces Help SSFAF-FH exists to help, according to need, all men and women serving, or who have served at any time, in the Armed Forces of the Crown, their families and dependants. Local branches of SSAFA Forces Help can be found in the local phone book or from the Citizens’ Advice Bureau or contact the Central Ofﬁce at: 020 7403 8783 or visit their website at: www.ssafa.org.uk.
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SSAFA Forces Help Housing Advice Service Provides housing information and advice to Ex-Service personnel and their dependants. For further information contact them at 01722 436400 or Haig Homes Haig Homes have some 1100 homes throughout the country for letting exclusively to ex-regulars and their families on assured tenancies. For details of where properties are located and application forms contact them at 020 8648 0335 or through www.haighomes.org.uk The Ex-Services Mental Welfare Society (Combat Stress) For nearly 80 years it has been the only organization specialising in the care of men and women of all ranks discharged from the Armed Services who suffer from injury of the mind. The Society has 3 short stay treatment centres that specialise in providing treatment for those who need help in coping with their psychological problems. For more information and full contact details for regional ofﬁces telephone the Head Ofﬁce on 01372 841600 or visit their website at: www.combatstress.com The British Limbless Ex-Servicemen’s Association (BLESMA) The objects of the Association is to promote the welfare of all those who have lost a limb or limbs, or use of limbs, or one or both eyes as a result of their service in the Forces and to assist needy dependants of such Service limbless. It will also help those Ex-Servicemen who lose a leg after Service. For more details contact them on 020 8590 1124 or visit their website at: www.blesma.org
St Dunstan’s St Dunstan’s cares for Ex-Servicemen who have lost their sight for any reason (even after leaving the Service). For more information contact 020 7723 5021 or visit their website: www.st-dunstans.org.uk. Regular Forces Employment Association (RFEA) Contact no is: 020 7321 2011 or at www.rfea.org.uk Veterans Aid Previously known as the Ex-Service Fellowship Centres (EFC) whose aims are is to relieve distress among ex-servicemen of all ranks and their widows or widowers who, at the time of application for assistance, are unemployed, homeless or for reasonable cause in need. They can be contacted at 020 7828 2468. Their website is at www. veterans-aid.net Ministry of Defence (MOD) Medal Ofﬁce There is now one Medal Ofﬁce, which covers all three Services and they can be contacted as follows: Service Personnel and Veterans Agency Building 250, RAF Innsworth Gloucester GL3 1HW Email: JPAC@afpaa.mod.uk Fax: 0141 224 3586 Free Phone: 0800 085 3600 Overseas Civ: +44 (0) 141 224 3600 For additional information about medals visit: www.veterans-uk.info Veterans Badges Men and Women who enlisted in HM Armed Forces between 3 September 1945 to date are entitled to a Veterans Badge. There is no qualifying length of Service. You can download a form from the Veterans Agency Website at www.veterans-uk.info/vets_badge/ vets_badge.htm or can obtain one by telephoning the Veterans Agency Help line 0800 169 2277 Army Personnel Records and Family Interest Enquiries Historical Disclosures The Ministry of Defence (MOD) keeps the records of former members of our Armed Forces for administrative use after their discharge. A Subject Access Requests (SAR) form needs to be completed in order to access records for all ranks in the Army that served after 1920. The following address should be used for ex-soldiers wishing to access their personal records. Army Personnel Centre, Disclosure 2, Mail Point 515, Kentigern House, 65 Brown Street, Glasgow, G2 8EX Tel: 0845 600 9663
The following address should be used for family members wishing to access records of deceased soldiers Army Personnel Centre, Historical Disclosures, Mail Point 400, Kentigern House, 65 Brown Street, Glasgow, G2 8EX The following personnel Service records have been transferred to the National Archive (formerly the Public Record Ofﬁce) and are available for public access.
- Royal Navy Ofﬁcers commissioned prior to 1914 - Royal Navy Ratings who enlisted prior to 1924 and First World War records for the Women’s Royal Naval Service - Royal Marine Ofﬁcers commissioned prior to 1926 - Royal Marine Other Ranks that enlisted prior to 1926 - Army Ofﬁcers commissioned prior to 1920 - Army Other Ranks that enlisted prior to 1920 - Royal Air Force Ofﬁcers that served prior to 1922 - Royal Air Force Airmen that served prior to 1924
Service records which pre-date those held by the MOD have been transferred to the National Archive and are freely available for public access. However the National Archives is not resourced to carry out searches. Enquirers are instead welcome to visit, or hire an independent researcher - see the National Archive website for further details at: www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/ militaryhistory
Household Cavalry Charities
e are always extremely grateful if past and serving members of the Household Cavalry wish to make donations or leave legacies in their Wills to our principal charities. To help you decide which of our charities you may wish to beneﬁt, and how, please read the following summaries of the objects and payment details of the main Household Cavalry charities. If you have any queries please ask the Secretary of your Regimental Association. The Household Cavalry Central Charitable Fund Payments to: “The Household Cavalry Central Charitable Fund (Charity No. 1013978)” Objects: (1) to help past and serving members of the Household Cavalry and their dependants who face ﬁnancial hardship or distress, and (2) to promote the efﬁciency of the Household Cavalry. Comment: The HCCCF is the Household Cavalry’s main, all-embracing charity. This is the fund into which soldiers’ day’s pay is paid. Just over 50% of the day’s pay monies is passed across by the HCCCF to the Regimental Associations to help retired members who are in hardship. It has been agreed between the HCCCF and the two Regimental Associations that the HCCCF will focus on helping serving soldiers and the serving regiments, for example with grants for injured soldiers and for adventure training activities, while the Associations will focus on helping the retired community.
A donation to the HCCCF enables you to support the Household Cavalry in the broadest way possible. The Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund Payments to: “The Household Cavalry Central Charitable Fund (Charity No. 1013978) for The Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund” Objects: to help provide ﬁnancial support to injured soldiers and their families where soldiers including those who have lost their lives on active service. Comment: This is not a separate charity in its own right but is a sub-fund within the HCCCF, so any payments should be made to the HCCCF. The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Payment to: “The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust (Charity No. 229144)” Objects: (1) to help past and serving members of The Life Guards and their dependants who face ﬁnancial hardship or distress, and (2) to promote the efﬁciency of The Life Guards. Comment: The trust’s emphasis is to help retired Life Guards and their dependants who are in ﬁnancial difﬁculty. All funds that accumulated up until November 2010, when the former trusts were replaced by the LGACT, are restricted to that purpose. Any new monies received after that date can be used to support serving soldiers and the serving regiment but as a matter of policy, even new monies will be targeted at retired members in the ﬁrst
instance. In essence, the charity enables you to support past or serving Life Guards in the broadest way possible. The Blues And Royals Association Payment to: “The Blues And Royals Association (Charity No. 259191)” Objects: (1) to help past and serving members of The Blues And Royals and their dependants who face ﬁnancial hardship or distress, and (2) to promote the efﬁciency of The Blues And Royals. Comment: The trust’s emphasis is to help retired Blues And Royals and their dependants who are in ﬁnancial difﬁculty but the Association can support serving soldiers too. In essence, the charity enables you to support past or serving Blues and Royals in the broadest way possible. The Household Cavalry Museum Payment to: “The Household Cavalry Museum Trust (Charity No. 1108039)” Objects: to educate members of the general public and Household Cavalrymen about the regimental history of all regiments that now constitute the Household Cavalry, to preserve regimental memorabilia, and to operate the two museums, one at Horse Guards and the other at Windsor. Comment: The long term aim is that proﬁts from the Museum will go towards helping past and serving Household Cavalrymen and their dependants who are in ﬁnancial hardship.
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Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund by Harriet McCann
ow are we doing? 2011 was a fantastic year for the Fund. We have been overwhelmed with the continued level of support and generosity shown, helping us to surpass the £1 million milestone for such an incredibly worthwhile cause.
LG Standard at Carol Service
A number of events contributed to our fundraising efforts including marathons, Ironman competitions, parades, balls and dinners. In particular, on 8th December 2011, the HCOCF organised a Carol Service at The Guards’ Chapel. The combined bands of The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals performed and we were delighted to welcome Dame Diana Rigg as one of the readers. The support shown throughout the evening was overwhelming and we are extremely grateful to all who came along. Many thanks to Nick Holliday and his committee for organising the event and making the evening a success, raising over £41,000 for the fund. Earlier in the year, Alistair Wood organised a dinner in the presence of HRH The Princess Royal at the Ironmongers’ Hall. It was an opportunity for us to thank all those who have helped the fund in the past as well as to introduce individuals and to hear more about the work we do. The Princess Royal gave a fantastic speech, mentioning the launch of our reintegration strategy, focussing on service delivery, and paying particular attention to the hard work the Household Cavalry do both on operations as well as in the UK. Trooper Clifford O’Farrell incurred serious injuries in December 2009 during a tour of Afghanistan. He has
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made rapid progress since then and has recently completed a number of extremely challenging championships. He was awarded a silver medal in the inter services open water swimming championships at Lake Bala, and completed the swim and cycle of the Cotswolds 113 triathlon in June last year. HCOCF supported Trooper O’Farrell throughout, supplying the equipment he needed. A recent adventure at sea, including Trooper O’Farrell as well as Capt Chishick, Surg Lt Col Lewin, LCpl Kennedy, Tpr Brown, LCoH Jones, and Capt Jelinek, named ‘Exercise Cockney Yardarm’ saw signiﬁcant beneﬁt to our operational casualties. Eight days on a boat, sailing around the British Virgin Islands, enabling many to decompress properly, offering a chance for them to talk through traumatic experiences together in new challenging circumstances. We are pleased the trip was a success and you can see the photographs and read the story in the nearby article. We are now well on our way to reaching our £1.5 million target by the end of 2012. Our exciting events calendar should keep us on track, with the Square Mile Salute, Horsemen & Heroes Day at Newmarket, Fashion For The Brave at The Dorchester to name but a few. None of this would be possible without the support of so many. Special thanks go to our Chairman, Alistair Wood and CEO, Alexander MacEwen, whose unwavering and continued dedication to the Fund have been crucial in all aspects; the HCR Welfare Ofﬁcer, Capt Ade Gardner, who has proved invaluable throughout HCOCF’s existence, providing consistent support
to all involved, especially those injured and their families; not forgetting the assistance of Scarlett MacEwen, while Harriet McCann and Lottie SmithBingham, previously assisted by Jessica Abel Smith, have provided the day to day ofﬁce power to handle and coordinate the many offers of assistance, fundraising events, and administration of donations. Please keep an eye out for our new website (www.operationalcasualtiesfund. co.uk) which will feature a running total of our Fund as well as the latest news of our events and fundraisers. Our vision is to reinvest in the soldiers and families of those personnel killed or injured on operations. This is achieved through focussing our spending on the 3 R’s; Recovery, Rehabilitation and Reintegration. The support we have received thus far serves as a testament to the high regard in which the soldiers of the Household Cavalry are held.
Household Cavalry Association - Dorset www.householdcavalryassociationdorset.org
President The Rt. Hon. The Earl of Normanton - formerly The Blues and Royals Vice President George Dugdale - formerly The Life Guards Chairman Raymond D Peck - formerly The Life Guards Secretary and Treasurer John Triggs BEM - formerly The Blues and Royals Committee Lt Col Malcolm Torrent - formerly The Band of The Life Guards Lt Col (Retd) Mick Harding - formerly The Blues and Royals Trevor Collett Senior - formerly The Blues and Royals Fred Kemp - formerly Royal Horse Guards Brian Murray - formerly The Blues and Royals Bill Stephenson - formerly The Blues and Royals Barry Woodley - formerly The Life Guards
s if it were a repeat performance of 2010, Dorset Squadron marched into 2011 with long johns and gloves woollen due to the weather. The Committee had established that although this was our 30th year, due to the economic climate we would continue with more of the same for the year and set about gluing it all together. The January newsletter reminded members of the Spring Dinner and Dance with the added attraction of Phil (Elvis) Fisk entertaining us in aid of Help for Heroes. The Winter Warmer Draw (WW11) is now an integral part of this event and again thanks to the generosity of the hotels we use there was the opportunity to win holiday breaks in Bournemouth and support the running costs of the Annual Dinner at the same time. As with previous years the proﬁts from the Winter Warmer Draw, the annual Balloon Race and the Annual Draw go to offset the costs of the annual dinner and that allows members to enjoy the event at a reduced price to the actual costs. Come March and 83 members, their ladies and guests gathered at the
Quality Hotel in Bournemouth with the Friday night ‘Meet n Greet’ dinner and disco which set the tone for the main event – the Spring Dinner and Dance the next night. Our Gentlemen Trumpeters, Messrs Bruce Worthy and Steve Hyett announced the dinner to much applause and satisfaction. Phil Fisk provided a superb Elvis impersonation and some great singing – and he really looked the part! £400 was raised by the bucket shake for H4H’s and all were well fed and entertained. The WW11 draw took place as part of the Spring Dinner and Dance weekend in March with over Mothering Sunday weekend and the well established routine. The WW11 was drawn and Dusty Miller won the third prize, Bill Maskell the second prize and the ﬁrst prize went to Mrs Pat Gilbert wife of John Gilbert, part of the Ringwood Maﬁa! And our thanks to the membership for the support and participation world-wide. In May members marched with their Regiments through Hyde Park as part of the Combined Cavalry Old Association Parade; this preceded the annual Act of Remembrance at the RHG/D Memorial in Rotten Row where Mr Barry Woodley again laid the wreath on behalf of the Association. We were saddened in June to learn of the passing of a very good friend of the Association - Rosalind – Countess of Normanton, the dear wife of our President. The Countess was a keen supporter to the Association through the President and she relished the Annual Dinners and enjoyed meeting everyone. A sad loss and she will be remembered with much affection. Come September the Committee met at the Chairman’s house to launch the Annual Balloon race. This was also the annual excuse to test the quality of the proposed wine for the Annual Dinner. With helium gas and wind assorted after the wine testing, the Committee and their wives launched 300+ balloons on a clear breeze over Bournemouth. The wind took the balloons east to start with then north east with the winning balloon being found near to the M1 at Newport Pagnell. The winner of the £150 prize was Mrs Louise Cutter from Peterborough - she had only left a telephone number on her ticket and at ﬁrst thought it was a scam and didn’t believe she had won. Again our great thanks to Lord Normanton for underwriting the total costs of the event and providing a bit of sport; and to Ray and Paula Peck for their hospitality and
wine glasses! The main event of the year was the Annual Dinner weekend; we were very honoured to have Colonel Stuart Cowen, Commander Household Cavalry, as our Guest of Honour. Come the weekend of 8th October the Quality Hotel was nearly full on the Friday night; just as well we had taken over the complete hotel! The weekend started on Friday evening when 91 sat down to an á la carte dinner, which was followed by a disco and - of course - a rafﬂe. Star turn of the night was Marty Elliott who gave us a rousing Frank Sinatra show and raised £190 for HCOCF - very well done Marty! Saturday was free for shopping in Bournemouth, but, as with previous years - the post-breakfast inter-pier swim didn’t attract any takers! Saturday evening commenced with the AGM, which was held at 1800 hours and presided over by the Vice-President, George Dugdale, who welcomed all to the meeting and handed over to the Chairman, Ray Peck. Following the AGM we were all bussed over to the Carrington House Hotel for the Dinner. Some members had elected to stay at the Carrington instead of the Quality so prior to dinner we all met up in the Ambassador Suite for photographs with the Dutymen. ‘Mess Call’ was sounded by Lt Col (Retd) Malcolm Torrent and that set diners off to table. Once the top table were welcomed and grace uttered, our very own Gentlemen Trumpeters, Messrs Steve Hyett and Bruce Worthy, roused the appetite with a fanfare ‘Call to Battle’ which was, as ever, note perfect and an absolutely splendid performance. We welcomed the Regimental Adjutant, Lt Col (Retd.) Harry Scott and his wife Joanna to our table and Lt Col David O’Halloran and his wife Frances. Riding ‘shotgun’ for the Commander was Maj Nigel Hadden-Paton, and a ﬁne job he did too. The President announced the message of Loyal Greeting to Her Majesty and Her Majesty’s gracious reply and proposed the Loyal Toast. The Chairman then introduced the Guest of Honour who then spoke with honesty, clarity and context about the Helmand deployment and the Household Cavalry in general. He concluded with a toast to the Household Cavalry which was roundly joined. After a brief welfare break diners took their chairs again and the Secretary rambled on about the HCOCF auction. Six items went under the hammer and
News from the Associations ■ 111
30th Annual Dinner and Dance - Top Table Rear row (L-R): Lt Col Harry Scott, Col Stuart Cowen, Lord Normanton, Mr Ray Peck, Lt Col David O’Halloran Seated (L-R): Maj Nigel Hadden-Paton, Mrs Joanna Scott, Mrs Paula Peck, Mrs Frances O’Halloran
all sold as follows: Warm-up the Auctioneer item; Coaldust to Glitter, by ex LG John Collier, raised £40 from a surprised Gary Matthew, that will teach him to stop waving his arms around and pay attention – seriously, well done Gary. •
Item 1 - A PAIR of highly detailed English pewter bottle stoppers featuring a Life Guard and a Blues & Royals ﬁgurine. Winning bid £70 – John Finney Item 2- A Robert Harrop 18 inch tall ‘doggy’s people’ sculpture of The Life Guards. Winning bid £160 Maj (Retd.) John Lodge - formerly of The Life Guards. Item 3 - A Help for Heroes item now helped us! A high-quality stainless steel linked bracelet with alternate links made from hardwearing ion gold plating. Winning bid £110 Mrs Rachael Murray. Item 4 - A double-sided glazed black frame mounted set of 25 British Cavalry 19th century tea cards. Winning bid £165 John Finney again! Item 5 - A matched pair of original oil on canvas framed pictures 14” x 18” of a 2nd Life Guard and a Royal Horse Guard, (with 1st Royal Dragoons in the background), in 1815 uniforms - both at Waterloo. Meticulous detailed images in celebration of the 350th Anniversary of the Household Cavalry regiments. One
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off and exclusive by artist Duncan Edwards’s ex-RHG/D complete with COA. Winning bid £1130 Bill Stephenson. So, when all the auction bids were counted a total of £1675 was raised, not bad for ten minutes works and a great effort from all involved with an extra large slice of thank you! And there’s more; Chris ‘Marty’ Elliott entertained the Friday night dinner crew and raised £190. Harry Maplesden had been shaking his bucket again this year and donated £180 for the fund and the Kilimanjaro Two - Kevin Allen and Andy Hastings donated £275 and £220 respectively. Mr and Mrs Tilbee also donated £100 into the Fund too. Very many thanks to all who helped and took part – very well done! All in all, a grand total of £2640 was raised for the HCOCF and we had a bit of sport on the way! As a tally note, over the last four years the Association collectively has raised over £12,000.00 for the HCOCF and a great big slice of thank you goes to the membership for their support and enthusiasm to the charity. After 10 years a new up-dated website should be generated and thanks to Maj (Retd) John Lodge we now have a great website with our newsletters available to view and photographs too. Find us at www. householdcavalryassociationdorset.com
And, in keeping with using social media as a communications tool, we now have a page on Facebook too - just search the name Household Cavalry Association Dorset. To round the year off we held our Christmas Lunch at the Quality Hotel on Sunday 11th December. A change from ice and snow of the previous years made for a most enjoyable relaxed lunch and we sat down 27 to a traditional ﬁne dining affair The Annual Draw was very kindly drew out by Erin and Holly, the grand-daughters of Mrs Anne O’Gorman and a splendid job they did too. First prize of £300 was won by Mr John Crisford of RHG Band fame, second prize was won by Mr Dave Stubbs and third prize was won by Mr Dick Burrows - well done to all the winners and again - thanks to the members for all the support.. Challenging times are on the horizon for the Household Cavalry and while there is much pleasure in reunion and memory – we do not forget those Household Cavalrymen who have been lost and injured operational theatres around the world. Much celebration is expected in the Diamond Jubilee and, with a change in our Annual Dinner venue, we look forward to 2012 when we will maintain and we hope improve, with the support of the members and our dedicated and hard working Committee, the very best traditions of the Household Cavalry.
Household Cavalry Association North Staffs Branch
The Blues and Royals Plot at the NMA
President: Lt Col (Retd) HSJ Scott - formerly The Life Guards Chairman and Treasurer: Mr B.A. Lewis - formerly The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) Secretary: Mr I.J. Taylor - formerly The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) Treasurer: Mr R Adams - formerly Royal Horse Guards
s winters are getting progressively colder it was unclear whether we would get any members to turn up at the ﬁrst Branch meeting in January. In the event we had an average turnout which says a lot for the calibre of old soldiers. Most would prefer to stay at home by the ﬁre in such conditions. Several members had attended the funeral of the late Capt Chris Sayer MBE
Mr Ian & Rev Ann Taylor with the Trumpeters at the Blues and Royals Plot at NMA
during the month, a sad time as many of us had served with Chris over 40 years ago. As our President, Lt Col (Retd) Shamus Olivier (formerly RHG/D) was retiring from the post as Regimental Adjutant, he had decided to stand down as President of our Branch, a position he had held for 13 years, and so the task of recruiting a new President was on. At the end of March we held our AGM, and all serving ofﬁcers were re-elected. Lt Col (Retd) Harry Scott (formerly LG) and newly incumbent Regimental Adjutant was duly elected as Branch President and we looked forward to meeting him at our annual dinner in November. The meeting in April was our ﬁrst social evening for the year with dinner for members and wives at our favourite hotel. At the beginning of May several members attended The Blues and Royals Association dinner at Windsor which was a grand affair to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the formation of the RHG/D regiments.
Guests at the Dinner, November 2011
Royals Memorial plot at the NMA on the Sunday morning. As this year was special for members of both regiments, a service to celebrate the 350th Anniversary was planned. The former Royals enjoyed their Saturday evening reunion, covered in a separate item, and on the Sunday the ranks were swelled by many former members of The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues). Thanks must go to Major (Retd) Paul Stretton for his inﬂuence in having The Band of The Blues and Royals send us two trumpeters to sound ‘Reveille’ and ‘Last Post’. The service was conducted by the North Staffs Branch Chaplain, and a reading was carried out by the North Staffs Branch Vice Chairman. For a change, the weather was ﬁne and following the Service many of us retired to the visitors centre for a grand Sunday lunch. Our sponsor who had supplied the original marble plaque at the NMA Mr J Hill at the grave of Trooper D Withers
For a number of years, many former members of The Royal Dragoons (The Royals) have held a weekend reunion in June, at a hotel close to the National M e m o r i a l A r b o r e t u m (NMA) in Staffordshire, culminating in a short Remembrance Service at The Blues and
News from the Associations ■ 113
has recently provided us with another marble plaque to mark the entrance to The Blues and Royals plot. As the number of visitors to the NMA increases so does the number of memorials, and we have to keep our plot up to the standard one would expect from our regiment to stay one step ahead of the competition! Our Branch Annual Dinner this year was a little later than usual and held on 5th November; while it was a great success there were no ﬁreworks! It was a great evening with members, supporters, friends from the North East Branch present, but the highlight of the
evening was meeting our new President and his wife. Both were made most welcome, Colonel Harry gave us a short talk and afterwards his wife Joanna was taught the art of high pressure selling of rafﬂe tickets by Sally Anne Olivier. A week later we had a Remembrance Service at the NMA - no rain for a change. After the service, one of our members, Mr James Hill, said he had been to visit a war cemetery near Hanover in Germany and found the grave of a former Royal and colleague of his, a Trooper D Withers. Our November meeting was the last for
the year, the date for next years Annual Dinner has been set, Saturday 10 November, and next year is our Branch 25th Anniversary. Our charity donations this year go to our local Riding for the Disabled and the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund. Our last get together was in the second week of December for our Christmas Dinner, and if the coming winter is anything like the last, it’s under the blankets until spring! It’s good to know our serving colleagues are all back home, we wish them as we wish our members, a happy family Christmas and Peace in the New Year.
Reunion of The Royal Dragoons 2011 at Alrewas by Mr John Atkins, formerly The Royal Dragoons
A group of Royal Dragoon veterans, at the NMA for the 350th Anniversary
n the weekend of 18th and 19th June 2011 former members of the 1st Royal Dragoons held there annual reunion and celebration at the Fradley Arms, Alrewas. With this year being the 350th anniversary of the formation of the Regiment with colleagues from around the UK and overseas and guest Capt Peter Thelluson, Norman Best ran a very successful rafﬂe on the night and raised a total of £125 which was added
to the money donated by the members making a grand total of £405 which was presented to the Haig Housing Trust by Norman. Ted Ayles presented everyone with the book ‘The Eagle’ by Gerald Lowthin at his own expense which was very much appreciated by all. On the Sunday morning a service was held at The Blues and Royals Memorial plot with former
The Rev Ann Taylor and her husband, Ian Taylor (Secretary of Household Cavalry Association N Staffs Branch with trumpeters from the Band of The Blues and Royals at the NMA
members on The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) to celebrate the 350th anniversary, the service was ofﬁciated by the Rev Ann Taylor from the North Staffs Branch.
Household Cavalry Association North East President Capt (Retd) Peter Townley - formerly The Blues and Royals Chairman/Secretary Mr Ken Rowe - formerly Royal Horse Guards
ur year started with our 26th Annual Dinner and Dance on the 9th April 2011. We had an excellent top table with
114 ■ News from the Associations
1Top Table 26th Annual Dinner
Capt Peter Townley presenting the Mayor with certiﬁcate and book
Lt Col JP Eyre (RHG/D) Commanding Ofﬁce, Household Cavalry Regiment as our main guest. Other guests included RCM WD Brown (LG) of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment and two Royal Hospital Chelsea In-Pensioners, John McNaughton and Paddy Fox who were guests for the ﬁrst time. The main civilian guest was The Right Worshipful Mayor of the City of Sunderland Council, Councillor Tom Martin accompanied by Mrs Tom Martin. Of course, the top table would not have been complete without our President, Capt (Retd) Peter Townley, and yours truly, Chairman Mr. Ken Rowe and Mrs Pat Rowe. Our guests came from as far aﬁeld as Perth in Scotland and Sussex in the South of England. A good night was had by all. Our standard was on parade in Whitby on Armed Forces Day on the 25th June and was carried by our standard bearer, Mr Geoff McInerney. Our next engagement was in the Mayor’s Parlour of Sunderland City Council where our President presented the new mayor,
Councillor Mrs Norma Wright with a certiﬁcate of honorary membership of our Association, along with a book about the Regiments. In September several members, along with the standard, paraded at Eden Camp, North Yorkshire, in their annual Veteran’s Parade. November is always a busy time. This year we had an extra parade on Friday the 11th November at the unveiling of a new military memorial in Sunderland. The new memorial is built around the existing war memorial and together they make a very impressive sight. The unveiling
The Sunderland Memorial Wall
took place with full military honours and it is dedicated to those members of the Armed Forces from Sunderland and the surrounding districts who have lost their lives from Palestine (1948) to Afghanistan today. Sadly one of the latest names is one of our own, Tpr SR Tansey (LG). Also very sadly, we have lost our past Chairman, Mr Don Scott (The Life Guards) who died on 4th October 2011. It only remains for me to wish the Regiment a successful and safe forthcoming tour of duty in Afghanistan. Good luck to everyone.
Memorial Stone - LCpl SR Tansey (LG)
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News from the Associations ■ 115
Features Cambrian Patrol 2011 by Lt A R Pickthall LG
enemy location; and we did so several hours ahead of schedule. This was vital to our success as it allowed us to complete an accurate and detailed Patrol Report as well as get some well deserved sleep. In total our patrol got between seven and eight hours sleep in the 48 hours of the patrol, which compared quite favourably with some of the ﬁgures other patrols shared with us post event (often measured solely in minutes!).
Section drills training at Castlemartin prior to the event
t was with much trepidation and naivety that in early 2011 I had originally volunteered to compete in this year’s Cambrian Patrol. I say volunteer but by virtue of completing the Platoon Commanders Battle Course, an oddity in itself for a cavalryman, I had in fact volunteered myself much earlier without realising it at all. Once I had come to terms with my task there was nothing left but to assemble my patrol and train them to a standard that would set us in good stead for the event itself. This was no mean feat, not least ﬁnding seven willing soldiers to drag me around the Elan Valley for 48 hours. Training took many forms and all came under the direction of B Squadron, who will form the regiment’s Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF) for Op HERRICK 18. In the months leading up to the patrol the squadron completed the ‘Fan Dance’ (an arduous march over the Brecon Beacons), a river crossing, one week of basic soldiering on Pirbright training area and one week training on the demanding terrain of Garelochhead. Everything from basic navigation to section attacks was covered with a real focus on doing the basics well. Fitness was tested and developed as was mental endurance. A particular highlight was the boggy ground of Garelochead where several soldiers discovered just quite how wet one’s feet can be before they simply fail to function. But one and all approached everything with enthusiasm and a sense of humour, something we were to come to realise was perhaps our strongest asset. Initial training was soon completed and our patrol was selected. I would lead the patrol with LCoH Loftus as my
116 ■ Features
2IC and also along for the ride would be LCpl Carrier and Troopers Luck, Moloney, Mitchell, Evans and Richardson. With the Commanding Ofﬁcer’s words of encouragement still ringing in our ears, “Don’t come back without Gold or you’re going to Knightsbridge”, there was nothing for it but to make our rather nervous way to the Cambrian Patrol RV in the wet and early hours of the Monday morning. There was a quiet conﬁdence amongst the patrol, although ultimately none of us knew what to expect. With kit-checks complete and orders given it was time to put our substantial Bergans on our backs and get walking. We quickly discovered that route selection was key and made good time: morale was often lifted by watching other patrols needlessly inspect the bottom of every valley in Wales as we skirted the high ground. Our initial task was to march in 17km and conduct a Close Target Recce of an
After handing in our Patrol Report we continued through various RVs completing an array of tasks which included a river crossing, shuras, PW handling, Casevac, med treatment, a section attack and a ﬁnal de-brief. The patrol performed well in all these areas with a particularly strong showing on the debrief. We had made a determined effort to share information with each other throughout the patrol and my job was made especially easy by a group of alert and intelligent Recce soldiers who were tripping over each other to give information regarding the previous 48 hours. With two days of hard-work complete it was time for a quick nap and breakfast before the awards ceremony. Conﬁdence was high and the patrol was still easily capable of further acts of endurance had they been required. Thankfully they were not, and it was with both relief and genuine pride that we were awarded our gold medals. Being one of only six teams to receive gold this year, out of a total of 104 teams, is a real achievement and shows the calibre of soldiers our regiments are lucky to have.
The exhausted, but still smiling Gold Medal winning Cambrian Patrol Team, with the author on the right
Middlesex and Northwest London Army Cadet Force by Captain Michael Nolan, Public Relations Ofﬁcer 07813 363076
Tottenham Army Cadet passes top course at Annual Camp
rmy Cadets from Tottenham’s 216 Detachment (The Blues and Royals) were among over ﬁve hundred young Army Cadets from all over North and West London who have just returned from a challenging two weeks at their annual Training Camp - this year at Wretham Camp near Thetford in Norfolk. During the twoweek camp Tottenham Cadet Sergeant Ashford James (17) of Edmonton completed the prestigious Senior Cadet Instructors Course, run by the attached Regular Army staff. It is a stretching and challenging course at the top end of a cadet’s career which enables those successful cadets to instruct others. Ashford has been a cadet for three years. He says “What I’ve enjoyed most about cadets is earning rank, and meeting new people. Teaching skills is what this course has taught me.” Below are pictures of the various activities and challenges that the cadets enjoy. Colonel Ian Denison, Commandant of the London Sector said “Over ﬁve hundred teenage Army Cadets from North
Cadets on parade
and West London have enjoyed a real opportunity to develop personally and hone their skills in the Norfolk countryside. It’s been a really excellent two weeks camp, with a varied programme of activities which fully engaged the interest of our cadets and staff. The camp is the culmination of a lot of hard work throughout the year. Looking after all of these young people is a challenging task and I am really very grateful to all my adult volunteers who give up their time so generously for our future citizens”
First Aid lesson
Douay School Army Cadets Grab Annual Camp Challenge
dventurous Army Cadets from 198 Douay Martyrs School Detachment Ickenham (Life Guards) were among over ﬁve hundred young Army Cadets from all over North and West London who have just returned from a challenging two weeks at their annual Training Camp - this year at Wretham Camp near Thetford in Norfolk. During the two-week camp eighteen year old school Cadet Lance Corporal of Horse Andrew Couto of Uxbridge, a cadet for ﬁve years, completed the prestigious Senior Cadet Instructors Course, run by the attached Regular Army staff. It is a stretching and challenging course at the top end of
a cadet’s career which enables those successful cadets to instruct others. He says “What I’ve enjoyed most about cadets is being a section commander at my detachment. He is pictured receiving his SCIC award from Colonel Ian Denison. Pictured also is Cadet Ludmila Klymenko 14 a pupil at the school from Northolt training on the obstacle course. Gliding and High ropes training, Clay Target shooting, Kayaking, Obstacle courses, Paintball and First Aid are just a few of the varied activities for the cadets over the two weeks of camp. Sports, target shooting and testing against the Army Cadet syllabus, military skills and
Cadet Lance Corporal of Horse Andrew Couto receiving his SCIC award from Colonel Ian Denison
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many other stretching activities were also part of the programme. The Army Cadet Force is currently looking to recruit suitable adult leaders, particularly for the central London area.
Cadet Ludmila Klymenko tackling obstacles
There’s an Adults Information evening being held at the TA Centre, Handel Street London WC1N1P on Thursday 15th September at 8pm. For information about Army Cadets as an adult or cadet go to www.armycadets.com
Cadets re-enacting the battle of Trafalgar in Kayaks
Exercise Cockney Yardarm British Virgin Islands 02-15 Dec 2011
he lonely twin-engined light aircraft started its descent from the clear sky over the glistening blue Caribbean Sea and there, in the distance, was our destination, a cluster of dark green rocks. As our pilot eased forward on the yoke and brought us in for a low approach over the sea these rocks, the British Virgin Islands, became more discernible; craggy volcanic hills covered in dense and tangled tropical bush. The plane banked between the hills before lining up to land at the small airstrip on Beef Island, so called because pirates used to graze cattle on its few grassy slopes. With the slightest of bumps, we touched down and taxied to halt opposite a smart white terminal building lined by tall palms. The Union Flag lapped lazily from a ﬂag pole, creating an instant impression of a colonial paradise. After a very generous reception from the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board in the VIP suite, the eight of us were ushered from the comfort of plump cushioned sofas and air-conditioning through sliding glass doors into the close embrace of the tropical heat. Our guide, Rujay, welcomed us with typical Caribbean aplomb and drove us from Beef Island across a bridge over a small channel to the island of Tortola, the largest of the British Virgin Islands, and named by Columbus after its native turtle doves. Rujay’s tour largely consisted of pointing out the very obvious, such as, ‘on your right you can see cement works. Makes cement for the island!’ and I began to suspect his confusion of the historical and the literary when he declared that famous pirates such as Drake (privateer surely!) and Captain Hook used to shelter in the channel before pounc-
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by Captain Andrew Jelinek LG
The Crew before setting off: L-R: LCoH Jones, LCpl Kennedy, Capt Jelinek, Surg Lt Col Lewin, Tpr Brown, CoH Hadley, Tpr O’Farrell, Capt Chishick
ing on unsuspecting Spanish shipping passing by. I was pretty sure that Hook didn’t pounce on anything more unsuspecting than growth-impaired children, but we were prepared to forgive Rujay his creative story-telling as it all added to the charm of the experience. We arrived at our hostel in Nanny Cay as dusk fell, and were billeted in a collection of charming brightly-painted outbuildings, many with their own timber verandahs and wicker chairs. Exhausted after the transatlantic crossing we all sank into our beds ready to begin our nautical adventures the next day. Our boat, a 42-foot Bavaria mono-hull yacht, Aquila, sat lolling gently at its mooring in the marina at Nanny Cay, the sun twinkling off its chrome ﬁttings and clean white hull. Seagulls squawked, ropes slapped gently in the breeze, and pelicans swooped and dived between the forests of masts, splashing into the water to catch ﬁsh skulking under the keels of the yachts. After a brieﬁng in
the Horizon Yacht Charter map room, during which we plotted our route, were warned of channels to avoid, coral reefs, shallow rocks, and informed of ideal moorings, anchorages, sites to see, and, most importantly, good bars, we stocked up on provisions, loaded them into the boat, and prepared to set sail. Our Yachtmaster, CoH Hadley, a seasoned sea-salt from the Household Division yacht, Gladeye, was supported by a Day Skipper, Captain Paul Chishick LG, the ships doctor, Surgeon Lieutenant Colonel Lewin RHG/D, and myself, entered in the roster as First Mate, which, given my lack of any previous sailing experience I had about as much right to be called as I did Grand Admiral of the Turkish Navy. The crew also consisted of two recently-qualiﬁed competent crewmen, LCpl Jones and Tpr O’Farrell, and two press ganged land-lubbers, LCpl Kennedy and Tpr Brown. We motored out of Nanny Cay, and, once out in Sir Francis Drake Channel,
around which the British Virgin Islands form a ring, hoisted the Blue-Red-Blue ensign and began our odyssey. The ﬁrst day’s journey was only a short leg after completing the formalities of taking over the boat and after a gentle introductory sail, LCpl Jones and Captain Chishick were scuttling up to the bow with a boat hook to catch the mooring rope on a buoy in the bay of Norman Island. Once securely fastened we surveyed our neighbours, yachts and catamarans of all sizes and nationalities, including a couple of our erstwhile maritime foes, the French, and a quite menacing junk, known as the William Thornton, a large metal-hulled sail barge with a tarpaulin canopy erected at its stern that was to provide our hospitality for the evening.
shade of green, bustling his way to the side of the boat, followed shortly after by a sea-sick LCpl Jones. Tpr Brown somehow managed to sleep through it all. By the afternoon, the worst of the weather had passed, and under tranquil but grey skies we cast our fenders over the side and moored in the harbour of Spanish Town to replenish supplies, having, rather alarmingly, used nearly half of the boat’s water supply. In some aspects we had adapted quite well to life on a boat, being, as armoured crewmen are, accustomed to living virtually on top of each other in a drippy tin can. Nevertheless our water consumption had to be reduced, therefore washing was done in the sea off the back of the boat, and shaving was to be restricted to every other day.
Beating up wind Capt Chishick, Surg Lt Col Lewin, LCpl Kennedy, Tpr Brown, Tpr O’Farrell, LCoH Jones, Capt Jelinek
Capt Jelinek and Tpr O’Farrell hoist the colours!
If our ﬁrst days sailing was relaxed, it belied the next day’s experience. With dark clouds looming ominously and a freshwind of about Force 5-6 on the Beaufort scale whipping up the waves, LCpl Kennedy and Tpr O’Farrell hoisted the main sail and we began to tack our way to Spanish Town. The spray splashing over the bow was soon complemented by a number of lashing squalls of rain, and while CoH Hadley stood masterful and commanding at Aquilla’s wheel LCpl Kennedy and I sat grimacing at each other, soaked to the skin. Soon we were joined by the Doctor, a disturbing
Tpr Brown and LCpl Kennedy man the winches
From Spanish Town we sailed to North Sound, passing Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island and then, after a night spent in North Sound we headed out into the wide expanse of ocean on a compass bearing, keeping a sharp lookout for the ﬂat sandy island of Anegada. Not being able to afford the expensive
Anegada speciality lobster, we set sail the next day for Jost Van Dyke, having to deploy Tpr O’Farrell (aka “Aquaman”) to rescue our inadequately secured dinghy as it bobbed into the distance. After two nights exploring the bays of Jost Van Dyke we sailed back to Norman Island before cruising into the refuelling dock at Nanny Cay to return our beloved Aquila after eight days at sea. There is no doubt that EX COCKNEY YARDARM was of signiﬁcant beneﬁt to our operational casualties, both physically and psychologically. Eight days on a boat greatly improved balance and proprioception as well as gluteal and other leg-muscle strength, the experience being described by Captain Chishick as like being on a wobble board for a week. We must also not underestimate the importance of environment to rehabilitation. The Caribbean context of the expedition enabled many of the casualties ﬁnally to decompress properly and comprehensively, a process often denied, or certainly abridged for our injured. The chance to talk through traumatic experiences over a pina colada was truly therapeutic and offered a degree of calm for those struggling with the ongoing consequences of Afghanistan every day. We are immensely grateful to His Excellency the Governor, the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board and Horizon Yacht charters for their hospitality throughout the expedition, and without whose help the trip would not have been possible. Also thanks must be extended to the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund and Help for Heroes for their considerable assistance with funding, and the smart shirts.
Crew off Sandy Cay. L-R: Capt Chishick, LCoH Jones, LCpl Kennedy, Tpr O’Farrell, Tpr Brown, Capt Jelinek, Surg Lt Col Lewin
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Old Blues never die – not with a photographic record compiled from correspondence from Mr Eric Simonsen Mr Eric Simonsen has sent a treasure trove of material of his service from 1946 – 1957. These photographs relate in the majority to The Blues, where there are Life Guards included this is shown as LG. Variously pictures from his collection will be used over the next few years. The story is told from mounted duty in London, to BAOR Germany, to Cyprus.
1946 Knightsbridge, as a ‘Rookie’ on Barrack Guard
1946, some of One Troop From left: Colby, Alcock, Barﬁeld, Drury, Stennet, O’Dell, Tom Rouse, Underwood, Cpl Newport, Brown. On the ﬂoor Hill, Wilkinson, Eric Simonsen being ﬁrmly held by the ears, Young, Wheatley.
Royal Windsor Horse Show in 1948
1948 Horse Guards, in Front Gate Order
1947 November, issue of the full kit, LG being inspected
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1948, Having passed through Admiralty Arch en-route to Houses of Parliament for the Opening of Parliament
1949 Wesendorf: Adjutants parade
1955-57 Serving in Cyprus. Dingo scout car, Eric Simonsen and Lou Attwell - ‘Lulu’ 1948. Wedding of Princess Elizabeth to Prince Philip, Sovereigns Escort in front of the Victoria Monument (The Wedding Cake), waiting for the coaches to emerge
1948 Daimler Armoured Car with Cpl Platt and two unidentiﬁed others
1948 “The ‘Blitz Troop”: Ready for patrol
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B Squadron, Royal Horse Guards, Limassol 1956 – Ofﬁcer’s Reunion by Sir David Black
fter the Blues and Royals Ofﬁcers’ Dining Club Dinner of this year, Hugh Pitman and I thought we might try to have a get together of the B Squadron Ofﬁcers of 1956 - the year the Regiment went to Cyprus, for the start of just over three years under canvas, in response to the EOKA emergency.
1956 by Major Dick Dickinson and later by Major Alan Hutchinson, who sadly are no longer with us. I was the Second in Command and the Subalterns were Hugh Pitman, Darel Carey, Robert Philipson-Stowe, Tim Bright, Bill Shand-Kydd, Colin Ransom, Bill Steele and Tim Jessel who died some time ago.
Mountains. The main object of our deployment was to capture EOKA terrorists who were ﬁghting for Greek independence - Enosis - under Colonel Grivas. The photograph below is of the ofﬁcers and SNCOs of the Squadron, believed to be just after SCM Ford had taken over from SCM Neil.
In the event we decided, as we were such a small party, it would be more fun to have lunch at my home with our wives. The six who attended, on Tuesday, 28th September, were: Hugh Pitman, Robert Philipson-Stowe and Tim Bright. Unfortunately Bill ShandKydd and Darel Carey were unable to attend and we could not ﬁnd any addresses for either Colin Ransom or Bill Steele.
We arrived not knowing very much about internal security but were sent cordoning and searching villages, setting up road blocks and very often had a troop patrolling in the Troodos
If anybody reading this should know the whereabouts of Colin Ransom or Bill Steele, we would be very grateful if you could let us know.
Sqn Royal Horse Guards, Cyprus, 1956
B Squadron was stationed at Limassol as an independent squadron, with Regimental Headquarters and A Squadron being in Nicosia and C Squadron at Famagusta. During this time the Squadron was in support, in the early days, of the Royal Norfolk Regiment, the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry and 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines. The Squadron was commanded during
Fly with the Household Cavalry by Neil Godson Ex LG WO2
ide, drive, ﬂy with the Household Cavalry is familiar to many Household Cavalrymen, but have you thought much about the ﬂying bit? Just over an hours drive away from Windsor you will ﬁnd Upavon Airﬁeld, to the north of Salisbury Plain Training Area, which is where the Wyvern (Army) Gliding Club is based. Many serving and ex-serving members of the Army, including myself and LCoH Danny Carter from the Life Guards Band, gather here most weekends and Wednesday sports afternoons to get our thrills from the joy of soaring high above the English countryside in gliders. Where we go depends on the weather but, typically, a quick trip to Didcot power station via Basingstoke, then on to Devizes and back, or a leisurely once or twice around the plain passing Stonehenge, or a low run on the South Downs ridge to Brighton and back are some of the ﬂights we do in our gliders.
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You will be surprised at how little it costs; £3.50 for the launch and ﬁrst 10 minutes and £1 for each further 5 minutes up to a maximum £25 for 2 hours ﬂying. If you own your own glider like many of us do, then it’s just the launch fee and we can ﬂy all day to our hearts content, weather permitting. Of course ﬂying without engines means that there are times that we can’t always get to where we plan to but that is exactly what gives us such a buzz. Will I make it back to the airﬁeld or will I have to ﬁnd a suitable ﬁeld to land in? Flying cross country is what we like to do, but of course, you will be trained up from a novice pilot to solo with further training in other subjects such as Rules of the Air, Navigation, Meteorology and Radio-Telephony, Field Landings and Cross Country ﬂying before being let loose on the aviation world. Once solo you can progress and gain
Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond Badges. For these you need to be able to stay in the air for ﬁve hours, achieve a height gain of 3280 feet (Silver) 9,840 (Gold) and 16,400 (Diamond) and ﬂy distances of 50Km, 300Km and 500Km for Silver, Gold and Diamond respectively. Challenging enough using an aeroplane with an engine let alone without! However, none of this is beyond the wit of most Household Cavalrymen, me being the case in point! If you fancy a go you can turn up at the airﬁeld and pay £15 for 20 minutes ﬂying or enroll on one of the six courses (Mon-Fri) that the club runs throughout the year which costs £150 including a year’s membership and all ﬂying until solo or six months, whichever is sooner. After a quick introduction to the glider and a few pre-launch checks, you will be in the air, the instructor will then demonstrate the primary effects of the Elevator, Ailerons and Rudder before handing over control for you to have a go.
For those of you who harbor thoughts of obtaining a Private Pilots Licence or ﬂying helicopters, gliding is a cheap
way of ﬁnding out what it is all about. For more information contact LCoH
The author testing LCoH Danny Carter
Danny Carter LG Band by email on firstname.lastname@example.org or myself email@example.com.
Rear L-R The author, LCsoH Martin and Carter Front L-R LCpl Watson, CsoH Sparks and Walsh, BCM Redman
Extracts from the memoirs of Walter Sydney Harvey
ike the vast majority of those who survived the horrors of the Great War, my late father would not talk about his front line experiences, but after much persuasion did talk about his service away from the front line. It is just one man’s story, but typical of many. He came from Shalford in North Essex and he joined the Metropolitan Police in 1913. After completion of his initial training he was stationed at Gerald Road Police Station in Chelsea. The building is still there and used by the Police as a Training School. In 1916 permission was ﬁnally given for a small number of Policemen to volunteer. At the Gerald Road Police Station, nine were allowed to serve in the forces and eight of the nine were asked to join the Household Battalion, which was a new composite Regiment composed of members of the 1st Life Guards, 2nd Life Guards and Royal Horse Guards. The Regiment was formed at the express wish of King George V who maintained a very close interest in its activities throughout its existence. ‘The ofﬁcers and men of Gerald Road Police Station gave us a feed and concert on our last night as policemen. The sergeants gave us each a silver cigarette case. We had been previously medically examined and accepted for the Household Battalion and had to report to Horse Guards Parade at 9.30am the following morning. We were all late getting up and took a taxi to Horse Guards Parade and arrived at 10.15am, three quarters of an hour late. To our surprise, nobody said anything about our late arrival. About 50 Metropolitan Policemen paraded on the square and an ofﬁcer asked who was the senior man on parade. A PC Martin stepped forward and was given the Railway
by Capt (Retd) John Harvey
Warrant for all of us to go to Windsor and report to Combermere Barracks. When we arrived at Windsor, the races were on. We had a quick consultation and all decided to go the races and meet at the Soldiers and Sailors Home for tea. After tea we went to the nearest Public House called the Victoria for a few drinks. Eventually we did arrive at the barracks at 11.15pm. A Corporal of Horse met us and said we had been reported missing. As young men this did not worry us unduly. We were taken to vacant married quarters by a Corporal who gave us some empty mattress cases and then took us to the stables to ﬁll them with straw. My pal William (Pat) Hogan told the Corporal we did not want any straw that night. He insisted and was knocked down by Pat. The rest of us had to square the Corporal. He did not report the incident and we were all the best of friends with him the next day. That morning, being a Sunday we were paraded in the front of the Colonel who said how pleased he was to have such a ﬁne body of men in his Regiment. To our surprise not a word was said about us being over twelve hours late. We had not been issued with any kit as it was a Sunday and we had to try and eat stew and boiled rice for dinner with our pen knives, a new experience, that. We were allowed out of Barracks after dinner and we all went for a decent meal at the Soldiers and Sailors Home. On Monday we were issued with our uniforms, riﬂes and other equipment. All of us ex-policemen were put in one squad, call the Metropolitan and County Police Squad, under a Sgt Barratt. Most of our instructors were ex policemen (Reservists called up on the outbreak of
the war) and we all got on well together. On the second Friday after we joined, the RCM came into our Mess Room and asked for twenty volunteers. As nobody volunteered, he detailed twenty of us to report at 6pm complete with greatcoats and sticks. When on parade he told us he had a very unpleasant task for us to perform. There was a draft of men to go to France the following day and we were to patrol the roads to Eton and Datchet and the two railway stations and stop any men of the Regiment from leaving by road or rail. Two of us were on Eton Bridge when three men arrived from the Barracks. We told them we could not allow them to pass. They said they lived in Eton and would like to go and say farewell to their families before they left in the morning. After checking their paybooks and seeing that they did live there, we decided to let them go. They promised faithfully they would not let us down and they did not. After
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the last train had left we all met at a pub we used at Datchet where our Corporal of Horse found us at midnight. He bought us all a drink, marched us back to Barracks and we were given the next day off. On Sunday mornings there was a church parade for men who were C of E. I was always one of the four picked for Colonel’s escort. Our Regimental Band played us to and from church. The Foot Guards at the nearby Victoria Barracks, at this time the Coldstreams, attended the same church. The Household Battalion always went into church ﬁrst and marched off ﬁrst on the return journey, as being part of the Household Cavalry we were the senior regiment. I noticed at the time that the collection plate was never taken to the ofﬁcers, I wondered why, but subsequently found out that the ofﬁcers contributed a ﬁxed annual amount to the church funds. Overall, we had a pretty good time at Windsor. Our Squad Sergeant was from the Scots Guards, Sgt Barratt, and he was jolly nice man. On Friday afternoons we had lectures in the main hall. He would tell us to sit down and we had to take it in turn to tell a tale, smutty or otherwise. He would then ask who wanted a weekend pass to London. On Saturday morning those who had requested one had to parade in front of the Colonel. He would ask why we wanted the pass and how we were going to London. We all had a good reason for going and in answer to how we were going to get there, we all said we had borrowed a bicycle to cycle to London. We had soon learnt that it you said you were going by train, your pass would not have been allowed. The Colonel would then ask Sgt Barratt “How have this Troop been this week Sergeant?” According to what our Sergeant answered, the poor old Colonel must have thought we were all angels and also that there were a lot of spare bicycles in Windsor. As soon as the Colonel had departed, we would see one of the Orderly Room clerks who handed us a railway pass in return for two shillings, which went into his back pocket, a nice little earner for him! We dare not ask for a pass every weekend, but we would go up to London regardless. The only difference being that on these occasions, we had to pay our fare. If we did not have a pass we always got off the train at West Drayton instead of going to Paddington, as there were always hordes of Military Policemen at all the main London stations. Whilst at Windsor, we had a week’s musketry course followed by a week on the live ranges at Runnymede Island. We travelled there by train. The ofﬁcer
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in charge of us had been a parson and always sang out his orders as if he was saying the responses in church. On the way to the station the ﬁrst morning we mimicked him on the way. He got rather nettled about this and called us to attention on the platform at Datchet and told us he would buy us a cup of tea and a bun each and every morning if we stopped taking the rise out of him. This he did, but he was such a decent man that at the end of the week we found out what he had paid out, had a whip round, and one of the men thanked him warmly and repaid him on the quiet. After the ﬁrst 3 weeks we were stationed in requisition civilian houses as the Barracks were completely full. My own Squad was put in a house called ‘St Swithins’. The weather was very cold and although we were allowed some coal for ﬁres, we were not allowed any wood to light them with. The ﬁrst night we were there I noticed a brass plate near the ﬁreplace and found it was a gas junction. I rigged up a pipe from this to the ﬁreplace, placed the coal on top and we had no more trouble lighting the ﬁre. Others heard about my ‘skill’ and I ﬁxed up other billets in the same way, earning a nice lot of pocket money. During training at Windsor we had plenty of physical training, led by an exceedingly nice Corporal of Horse named Rose. One day he was on leave and a short, cocky little Corporal took his place. He called us to attention and barked out “now then you ex-coppers, you are going through it this afternoon, by the time I have ﬁnished with you lot, you will wish you were dead”. Word quickly spread along our ranks and when he barked out his ﬁrst order not one of us moved. He nearly foamed at the mouth and went and fetched the Colonel. While he was gone we elected a spokesman and told him what to say in our defence. The Colonel arrived and wanted to know why we had disobeyed the order. He was told ﬁrmly that we were used to being treated with respect and were not going to be treated like dogs. He asked what had been said and on being told, asked us to put up with the Corporal for one afternoon. He would make certain that the next day CoH Rose would be back the next day taking the physical training and he was. We never saw the young Corporal again. In Windsor there was a superb YMCA canteen and we were also allowed to have the free use of the Liberal Club where there was an excellent billiard table. As all ex policemen played billiards we had some very good games, particularly against the normal club members, where we won many
free drinks. Although we were in the Army we were still on the strength of the Metropolitan Police Force and could have been called back in case of any serious union led problems or other serious troubles. In the March of 1917 three of us, myself and Troopers Harris and Hogan decided to get married. As well as getting permission from the Army we also had to get the permission of the Police Superintendent of B Division where we had been stationed. We all married on the same day, 10th March. I was married from No 12 Belgrave Square where my ﬁancée was working in the Military Hospital set up there and the ceremony was performed at St Paul’s Church, Knightsbridge. When we came out from the church we were amazed to ﬁnd eight men from Gerald Road Police Station forming an archway of truncheons. They all came back to 12 Belgrave Square at the invitation of the housekeeper, a Miss Acott and we were all given a very good time. The Bathurst family whose house it was, were extremely generous. My wife was then granted an allowance of 16 shillings from the Army and 15 shillings from the Police receiver. On Easter Sunday morning in 1917 we were to proceed to France. We were marched down to Windsor Station and a Capt Legg from the Scots Guards who had been in charge of our training and was considered by us all to be a bit of an old tartar, told how proud he had been of us and said it was a bloody shame that men like us, should be sent for cannon fodder. The tears were rolling down his cheeks when he ﬁnished and we forgave him for everything he had done to us. We gave him three hearty cheers and he broke down completely. I must go back to one or two little occurrences on the square at Combermere Barracks. One afternoon we were being drilled when the trumpet sounded a call at the guardroom at the entrance. Although there were several squads drilling on the square, none of the Instructors noticed that the Royal Salute had been sounded and a runner had to race round the square and tell the Instructors to stand their squads to attention. The Duchess of Teck had just come into the barracks. The next morning we all had to parade on the square and a trumpeter sounded the Royal Salute about twenty times so that all should know it in future. Forty years later I was sitting in the Castle Park at Colchester when I heard a trumpet call. I said to my wife “That is the Royal Salute”, I recognised the call immediately. We walked to where we thought the sound had come from and
found The Duke of Gloucester opening a Fete on behalf of National Productivity Year. We left Windsor at 8am on Easter Sunday morning and arrived at Southampton docks about 11am and had to sit on the dockside until about 7pm on the evening. We then embarked on an old paddle steamer “The Montrose Queen”, belonging to the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company. It was on old cattle boat. As we had had nothing to eat since breakfast that morning we were pleased to buy cocoa and hard tack biscuits from the crew. We disembarked at Le Havre; what a ﬁlthy black hole that looked. We were then marched to No 1 Infantry base depot at Harﬂeur. It was a huge camp and we were billeted in bell tents, 14 to a tent. As very tall ex policemen it was a tight squeeze. The food was good but the smells disgusting. In the centre of the camp was a huge incinerator where the contents of the latrine buckets were emptied and burnt. You always prayed the wind was not blowing towards your tent. Whilst here, several consignments of oranges were received from King Alphonso of Spain. We all received three or four at tea time. These were the best oranges I had ever tasted. After breakfast we were marched up a steep hill to a large training ground called the Bull Ring. There were many regiments in training there including the Foot Guards and numerous Country and Highland Regiments. All the instructors here were Canadians. On our very ﬁrst morning parade there an Instructor asked if there were any carpenters present. I took one pace forward and a pal of mine, although not a tradesman, also stepped forward. We were asked if we could grind chisels and given many boxes of chisels to sharpen. When all had been sharpened, I was asked if I could make dug out frames. This was an easy job for me (having ﬁnished my apprenticeship as a carpenter before joining the police). On the last afternoon at the Bull Ring, my Commanding Ofﬁcer (Colonel ‘Duke’ Hill) thanked me for my good work in front of the regiment. On leaving Harﬂeur we embarked on a train to join our Battalion near Arras and were almost instantly in action. Colonel Sir Wyndham Portal was now our CO and a Capt Dicky Dill Adjutant. My Company Ofﬁcer was a Capt Victor Cazalet MC, a very ﬁne man and ofﬁcer. Every man in his company worshipped him. He was a personal friend of Winston Churchill and was tragically killed in WWII when he was Military Attache to Gen Sikorsky, C in Commander of the Free Polish Forces, when the plane they were on
crashed into the sea off Gibraltar. Our Colonel was a very windy man and was detested by almost every man in the Battalion. The Regiment suffered a lot of casualties during the Battle of Arras, being in the front line near Rouex. After reinforcements had arrived from England we were moved to the Somme. Several trains passed us full of men suffering from Mustard Gas. We only had P.H. helmets at this time, these were hoods made of the same material as our shirts with two circular eye pieces and a clip to place on your nose, then the lower half of the hood to be folded and buttoned up in our tunics. After we were issued with box respirators we still had to take our P.H. helmets with us. On our way up to the Somme I was temporarily transferred to the Battalion Transport to help repair the wagons and also make up wooden crosses to place on the graves of our comrades who were killed. We ﬁnally arrive at a place called Wateau and a Corporal and myself were sent to take over the horse lines from the Regiment that was leaving. There was a lot of horse and mule drawn artillery in the area and at this time the Germans were ﬂying over every night and dropping spring bombs which, on hitting the ground, sprang up and scattered shrapnel around, killing a large number of horses and mules as well as men. Whilst at this camp, a Battalion of the Middlesex Regiment came to the Camp horse lines. Their Colonel had his own charger, a magniﬁcent chestnut gelding. He put it down at the bottom of the Camp with a two foot sand bag wall around it. This wall was put up all round the horse lines. The ﬁrst night after their arrival a German plane came over and dropped a spring bomb right in the enclosure where the Colonel’s horse was. It was so terribly injured that it had to be shot. I felt so sorry for the Colonel who was visibly upset. The Household Battalion went into action on the Somme in mid 1917 and was terribly mutilated. At the roll call on the return from the font line, only 120 men and 3 ofﬁcers were present to answer their name. Our Acting Colonel, Adjutant and hundreds of my comrades were killed. The food was very scarce and we went for 10 days on one occasion with only hard biscuits, not even any jam to put them on. After our spell in the front lines on the Somme we returned once again to Arras where we spent part of the winter. The ofﬁcer in charge of our battalion transport was a Capt de Keen. He had been a tea planter before the war and
was a ﬁrst class ofﬁcer. Our senior NCO was CoH Varella. He was an ex tram driver from Eastbourne. He was very strict but well liked by everybody. On one occasion two heavy draught horses were missing from our lines one morning. The two men who were on night line picket were court martialled as was a Cpl Wright DCM who was in charge of the picket that night. The outcome was that the two troopers had a horse each put down in their paybooks and the Corporal was reduced to rank of trooper. A few weeks afterwards he was promoted back to Corporal. Soon after this, the men were exercising our horses one morning when they saw that two of our horses was missing. It was thought they had been stolen by men of the nearby Naval Division. In the evening Capt de Keen, CoH Varella and six of us Troopers rode down to the Naval division’s horse lines and found both the stolen horses. The Naval men had branded an anchor over the Crown on these horses hooves. The Crown underneath could be seen clearly. After a lot argument and very choice language, we returned in triumph with our horses. In October we were moved up to the Ypres Salient where we took part in the Battle of Passchendaele. Our main action was an attack on Requette Farm near to a small town called Poelcappele. We were slaughtered and only one ofﬁcer remained standing, Capt Cazalet MC, no NCOs and a handful of men. So many of my comrades lie buried in the cemeteries in the area, with well over a hundred on the walls to the Missing at Tyne Cot. In February 1918 the Battalion was disbanded, I was initially transferred to the Grenadier Guards but very quickly was transferred again to the Royal Horse Guards battalion of the newly formed Guards Machine Gun Regiment. We were sent to Etaples to train as machine gunners. Whilst I was there the large hospital was bombed by the Germans and a lot of nurses were killed. As a trained carpenter I volunteered to help make the cofﬁns for these once beautiful, but now terribly mutilated young girls, and was able to attend their burial service. An awfully said day. My ofﬁcers now included a Lord Tweedmouth as omd Offr and Capt Sidney Herbert as Adjutant, both them and indeed all the other ofﬁcers in the Battalion were an excellent body of true gentlemen. My time with this battalion to the end of the war was the most enjoyable and happiest part of my service in the Army. Six of us ex troopers from the Household
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Battalion who had been transferred to the Royal Horse Guards were warned one evening that we were to go on leave the next morning and had to report to the MO’s tent at 9am. Our mates told us that the MO, a Maj Course would not allow anybody to go on leave unless they had been inoculated within the last three months. As none of us had been inoculated at all since we had left England we were in a bit of a quandary. I put in all six paybooks TAB and the date. The MO asked us where we had been inoculated and we all said St Jean’s Hospital in Arras. We had not realised we should have put in the place, but he let us get away with it. Our 14 days leave ﬁnished and we were due to return from Victoria Station on August Bank holiday morning. As I had been on duty many times at this station whilst in the police I knew the procedure. We all agreed to meet on the Monday morning and we rushed into the station ten minutes after the last leave train had left. One of the police Sergeants on duty that I knew from my days at the Gerald Road Police Station took us to the RTO’s ofﬁce. The Sergeant vouched for my character and we all explained that we had got hung up on our journey to the station and he signed our passes for a further day. We then left and had a riotous day in London. The following day we caught the train to Folkestone and embarked on a boat to Boulogne. We had to hang about outside the harbour to let King George V disembark before we were
allowed to dock. When we got back to our Battalion, everyone was in a ﬂap, cleaning and blancoing their equipment as we were to be inspected by The King that afternoon. It was a very hot day and our CO, Lord Tweedmouth told us to put on our belts only and carry our riﬂes. We had to march some two and a half miles. Our band being used to playing mounted music played the same kind and we got on a trot after a short distance. The CO told the Trumpet Major to bloody well stop and shut up. When The King arrived he said “the Guards look well Tweedmouth”. Our CO replied “The Guards always do, Sir”. After inspecting us The King congratulated us on our turnout and stopped during his inspection and spoke to many of us. About this time we were hearing rumours that the war was ﬁnishing, but when our Signallers, listening to the wireless that we had captured from the Germans, heard on 10th November that the Armistice was near, we hardly believed it. Sadly one of our men shot himself on the very night the Armistice was signed; he had just heard his wife had had a child by another man. One little incident I must recall . A few weeks before the Armistice we were in a camp near a large river. Two Australian Mounted Police caught two of our men ﬁshing by throwing Mills Bombs into the water. The ﬁsh came up to the top and were quickly pulled in. The Australians brought the 2 men
back to our lines. When our CO arrived back from a brieﬁng he told two of our Regimental Police to go out and bring in the ﬁrst 2 Australians they came across. This was done and our CO sent word to the Australian Headquarters that he had 2 of their men locked up in the Guard Room and would they come to collect them. An Ofﬁcer and escort arrived and Lord Tweedmouth told them that when he wanted the Australians to look after his men he would bloody well let them know. They all parted eventually the best of friends; everybody had a lot of time for the Australians. The morning after the Armistice was signed, CoH Cappin and myself were told to take a lorry and to go to Amiens to fetch a load of beer. I also had a long list of vin blanc and other wines to get for the other ranks. We had to stay the night in Amiens and were given a right royal welcome. I was due to leave the Regiment on Christmas Eve to travel home to prepare for demobilisation. When I went for my ﬁnal interview with the CO he said I was to stay and celebrate Christmas with them. Did I enjoy it. I left on Boxing Day morning on the mail truck and I was sorry to leave in a way. Both the Ofﬁcers and men I had served with, with a very few exceptions had been a lovely crowd and I was both pleased and extremely proud to have been one of their number.’
Father and Son Service – The Howards by Mr CLJ Howard, formerly The Life Guards and 2 HCR
y father ACT Howard was conscripted in late 1940 into The Life Guards, Reg No 295555 and later posted to HQ Squadron 2HCR and became driver to Lieutenant Colonel AbelSmith. On my attaining the age of 17 in April 1943 I signed up to join the Army requesting to serve in the Household Cavalry. The age limit for service being 17½ years. I was duly instructed to report to Combermere Barracks on 20 Nov 1943 where on arrival I received a glaring look from the Provost as I was dressed in an ill ﬁtting battle dress having been a member of the Home Guard. My name is CLJ Howard GS No 14498682 and I was duly attested into The Life Guards. I had two days spent feverishly spit and polishing before the arrival of the rest of my squad. At that time I received 14/- per week and all too often 6d was deducted for Barrack damages. The squad went through three months of square bashing and infantry training. At that time there was an as-
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sault course in a ﬁeld fronting the indoor riding school and a far more elaborate one in Windsor Great Park where we received our baptism under live ﬁre. I recall being frightened of heights having to climb over the arch of the railway bridge over the Thames at Windsor being in full kit and hob nailed boots, with the railway lines on one side and telephone lines on the other and, way below us, the Thames. On another occasion I was forced to box by a Sgt Maj McNab who took us in the gym. I think he was a member of the Army Physical Training Corps. Eventually a ring was set up in the Mess and several bouts took place. As for myself, I was knocked out in the ﬁrst round by another Life Guard recruit, Brian Halsey, who I understand later became amateur heavy weight champion of Great Britain. My effort was well worth it, as afterwards the participants were given a slap up meal in the Mess kitchen. A few of our squad were Londoners
Mr Howard’s father, on the left, taken in August 1945 in Bruhl, just South of Cologne
who liked to go home for 36 hours at the weekend, but invariably Fatigues
were detailed for on Sunday, and those not on Fatigues volunteered to do those for the Londoners at the going price of 5/-. My favourite Fatigue was cleaning the snooker room above the Troops Mess. On another occasion, proceeding on a night exercise the ofﬁcer taking us said our ﬁrst stop would be a village pub where he bought us all drinks, I cannot recall his name, he had a bad limp and had at one time played rugby for England. After completing driving, radio and gunnery courses and tactical courses in armoured cars we were ready for active service, for this I received 6d a day. Again, I was too young to go overseas, the age limit being 18½ years. My squad mates sailed for France about September 43. I was posted to the Household Cavalry detachment under a Maj Baillie and Lt Lord Rupert Neville. This unit comprised of two troops of armoured cars and 11 military police outriders on Harley-Davison motorcycles. We were housed in the Barrack married quarters and all the vehicles were kept in the indoor riding school. Whilst with them we did two trips to Sandring-
ham and on a few occasions were employed as Beaters for the shoots of The King and his guests. At lunch time The Queen would arrive in a station wagon, which contained hay boxes of hare stew and bottled beer of which the Beaters partook. We received 5/- a day for this task. Once, when The King and Queen were in residence at the castle, we were all invited to a showing of a ﬁlm in their presence in the Blue room and later to a church service in St. Georges Chapel. All good things come to an end and on 1 Jan 45 I sailed from Dover to Ostend to join the 2 HCR. My ﬁrst billet with two other troopers was on a bare ﬂoor in a bare room on the top ﬂoor of a low class brothel in Louvain, Belgium. We had no invites; the staff were busy with Americans. In mid Jan 45 I was posted to B Sqn 2HCR under Maj Ward. From Belgium the regiment moved to Nijmegen, whilst there I saw my father a few times but did not see him again until VE Day 8 May 45. He was de-mobbed in 1946. After the regiment was split up I saw
service in Egypt and Palestine and was de-mobbed in Aug 47, receiving a cheap suit, two shirts, a tie, pair of shoes and a Trilby hat, all in a cardboard box and a gratuity of £90. In 1951, like many exservicemen, I joined the British South Africa police in the then Southern Rhodesia, another ﬁne force. My initial training included square bashing and equitation, somewhat deja vu. I retired in 1979 as a Chief Inspector.
Lt Gen Sir Brian Horrocks leaving BAOR and shaking hands with the driver of a Matador Armoured Car of B Sqn LG in May 1945
Royal Horse Guards Rugger in 1955 by Mr KF Matthews
Recently this photograph surfaced. 22851257 Tpr KF Matthews is third from left in the back row of this photograph taken of the Royal Horse Guards rugby team in 1955. Maj Dickinson is holding the ball. Others may be able to recognise the rest of the team. The Rugby team – Royal Horse Guards - 1955
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Name that Squad The photograph below was sent in by Mr KW Iveson. He wonders if anyone could help him out with the name of this Squad that passed out of Household Cavalry training at Windsor in 1953 and any other pertinent information. Recorded below the photograph is the detail that 2Lt Holliday and CoH Prince were in charge of the Squad, both being LG. Mr Iveson is on the Troop Leader’s right.
They Said I Was Mad
by John Shayler, formerly Royal Horse Guards (The Blues)
t the innocent age of 17 and a half, in September 1953, instead of waiting for my summons to compulsory National Service, I signed on for three years in the Royal Horse Guards. They said I was mad. There was a motive in my madness, as I had my sights on joining the Police Force at the age of 20 and with a background in the Guards, this would inﬂuence my chances. Like so many, I under-estimated what was about to hit me - but give me back those years and I would do the same again. The most memorable event in my basic training was an exercise in completing a lengthy route, using a compass and a given number of paces between each reading. The squad was divided into parties of four and “never volunteer” they used to say, but full of bravado and a disguised conﬁdence, I volunteered to go off ﬁrst, with three other comrades and of course, the compass.
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After several readings and counting the paces taken between each reading, we surprisingly came face-to-face with a very high fence. A lot of debate was followed by a decision to wait for the group behind us, to catch-up, just to make sure that we really did have to climb over the fence. Group 2 eventually arrived and their reading of the compass conﬁrmed that we should climb over the fence. We did - and on the other side there were manicured lawns and beautiful gardens. Away in the distance was a magniﬁcent house. It seemed like seconds after we landed that we were surrounded by Police ofﬁcers in great numbers. I have (deliberately) omitted to mention that we were in Windsor Great Park and the house was Royal Lodge! We were rapidly transported back to Combermere Barracks, following which we found
ourselves in the Colonel’s ofﬁce; reprimanded and conﬁned to barracks. However there was a sequel to this memorable event, since our compass route had been planned by a Sergeant from the Education Corps, who was attached to our regiment. It transpired that he had made a mistake and needless to say he was rapidly ‘unattached’ and our records were cleansed. Sadly, after completing the square-bashing I had a less- than-short experience with the horses and was told I would not meet the standard. Truth was I did not have the conﬁdence to master those magniﬁcent creatures. The remainder of my service was spent as a Regimental Policeman, under the command of Squadron Quarter Master Corporal Jock Lippe. A Quarter Guard for the GOC at
Jock until his death in 2008 and I am still in touch with his family, together with Corporal John Bishop and another Trooper Syd Bruce — all lifelong good friends. Many who served at the time will remember Jock Lippe. It was said that if you saw him coming - “Hide”. At the beginning of 1956 we embarked to Cyprus and I continued as a Regimental Policeman at HQ in Nicosia.
A Quarter Guard for the GOC at Combermere Barracks, 1955
Combermere Barracks, 1955 The photograph was taken, I think circa 1955 on a General Ofﬁcer’s Command inspection. Everyone will recognise
SQMC Lippe and from left to right Corporal Syd Woods, Corporal Wally Nettleton, myself, Corporal John Bishop and I think Corporal Brian Mather (out of sight). I remained in contact with
Our Colonel by this time was the Marquis of Douro (now the Duke of Wellington) and on many occasions I had the honour of serving as one of his three bodyguards, as it was believed that the terrorists had a price on the heads of Ofﬁcers. Very sadly during that time our Medical Ofﬁcer, Captain Wilson, was shot to death by the terrorists and I was more than cross that when I returned to Cyprus for a holiday in 2007, we were not granted access to Waynes Keep cemetery, without a previously arranged appointment. I remain immensely proud to have served in our Regiment.
A Nostalgic Trip to Germany 2011
by Jimmy Nunn formerly 23298304 L/Cpl Nunn JP, The Royal Dragoons
n 18th July 2011, accompanied by my wife Jean and ﬂying from Birmingham, we made a four night nostalgic trip to Germany, travelling around by train and bus to visit the places where I was stationed during my National Service with The Royal Dragoons (The Royals) from 1956 to 1958. I joined The Royals in the summer of 1956 at Combermere Barracks, Wesendorf, BAOR, unfortunately this is no longer occupied by the British Army and we gave it a miss as time was limited. During 1956, The Royals moved to Harewood Barracks, Herford, BFPO 15 and occupied the barracks till 1960. Of note is that Life Guards also occupied Harewood Barracks between 1960-1962 and The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) between 1962-1966, so it has strong connections with the Household Cavalry.
On arriving the barracks were instantly recognisable; very little change appears to have taken place. If any of my colleagues who were employed with me in the Orderly Room are reading this I’m sure they will recognise the building in the picture which housed the Orderly Room, with our accommodation on the upper ﬂoors. The Guard Room has changed slightly but is in the same location and now staffed by civilians. The last time I saw this place was on 28th March 1958, from the back of a lorry which was taking three of us to the railway station to start the ﬁrst leg of our journey home, travelling to the Hook of Holland for the dreaded boat crossing to Harwich. We were packed like sardines and I recall it being so hot in those ships. It was an all day job to get home in those days but when we were off the boat and on the train to London we really felt at
The Guardroom and behind the former Orderly Room
home. I said to myself then that I would return one day, not dreaming that the ‘one day’ would be 53 years later! Unfortunately, we were not allowed to tour the camp as no one was available to accompany us, according to the security man, as understandably the barracks is now home to Headquarters 1st (UK) Armoured Division. However, even so the visit was well worthwhile and we were made very welcome by those we did see. Herford itself hardly registered with me at all. Although we spent quite a bit of time in the town, the changes to the roads, shops etc were all unfamiliar, completely different from what I remember. The next day we travelled by train from Hanover to Celle, another town which was very familiar to me during my army days. Although the bridge
Mr Nunn checks the weeding outside Harewood Barracks
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and river were recognisable, again the road changes made it very difﬁcult to recognise the town. The park areas and ﬁne buildings seemed vaguely familiar but other than that, not much else. We spent several hours at the BergenBelsen concentration camp, about twenty miles from Celle, travelling there by bus. Certainly not for the faint hearted but an experience to
see the mass graves and quite new visitor centre which contains much information. Over 100,000 people either starved to death or died of diseases there before it was liberated by the 11th Armoured Division in 1945. We were very impressed by the staff there that even organised a taxi, free of charge, to take us back to Bergen to catch our bus! Our last full day was spent exploring
Hanover. Again, this was a town I visited quite often 53 years ago, but much changed now. This is indeed a lovely city and the Railway Station is superb, mainly underground with restaurants and shops in abundance. We spent our ﬁnal night in the excellent Englishspeaking Dormero Hotel, before boarding the plane at Hanover for the twohour ﬂight to Birmingham.
The Northerner from Wigan
by Mr A Sherrington formerly The Royal Dragoons (1st Dragoons) 1959-1961
n April 1959 I was called up for National Service Reporting to Bourlon Barracks, Catterick, North Yorkshire, where I did my basic training with the 5th Royal Tank Regiment who were stationed there at the time. As a National Serviceman my cap badge was the Royal Armoured Corps Badge (Mailed Fist). The lads other than the National Servicemen had the badges of their respective Regiments for which they had signed on. From Catterick, along with other pals, I was posted to join The Royal Dragoons who were about to set sail from Southampton to Aden. Looking back this was an experience in itself. The Regiment sailed out on the Merchant Vessel (MV) Devonshire. The band was playing, families waving to loved ones - a very emotional experience. Following a good voyage we arrived in Aden. From what could be seen from the sea, Aden looked and intimidating place.
Aden as seen from deck of MV Devonshire
The Regiment was based some 20 miles away from Aden at Little Aden, next to the BP reﬁnery (Oil). Upon arrival the Regiment took over from The Life Guards. The billets were air conditioned, the food was good and when off duty we had the luxury of using BP’s swimming pool.
View of the camp at Little Aden next to BP
As well as the rest of the Regiment, among my fellow Troopers, NCOs and Ofﬁcers were the Sqn Ldr, Major Lewis, 2IC Lt Lockhart, Sqn Sgt Maj Brennan, Cpls Tony Mustoe, Melia, Buckingham, Bell. Tprs Lester, Freemantle, Hurst, Waters, Southall, Lovibond, Tibbenham, Lakin, McKeown, Willey, Laurie, Shorter, Davis, Martin and Padﬁeld. These were the men with whom I would spend the rest of my service -my apologies to anyone whose name I have omitted. I learned to drive under the instruction of LCpl Bell and after passing out I was in the main on DHALA convoys. Other duties included collecting supplies and mail from Steamer Point in Aden. LCpl Bell must have done a good job training me because when I left the Army I took up driving for a living. I spent 40 years on the road as an HGV Driver, accident free, 30 years with one company (Reed Paper Group) achieving 30 Safe Driving Awards (ROSPA). The terrain of the Aden Protectorate varied from soft sand, rocky tracks to the rugged mountains of Yemen. There was reputed to be only 90 miles of tarmac roads throughout Aden and that included side streets. On a Dhala convoy we would mount up at 5 am. The ﬁrst 10 miles from Little Aden was tarmac road. At the town of Sheik Othman we would skirt the edge of the town, turning left, heading into the desert. The ﬁrst few miles were very soft sand, so the 4 wheel drive was needed. As the sand thinned out we entered a very rocky area which in effect was a wadi of a dried up river bed. Situated
The Dhala Pass
at the halfway point to Dhala was a fort, then a few miles of vegetation before we came to what was beyond doubt the hardest part - The Dhala Pass. The Pass was the last push up to the Base at Dhala, because by now we were well into mountain territory. For safety reasons, vehicles were sent over the pass at 10 minute intervals. We were ordered to keep in 4 wheel drive, low gear, for as well as being rocky some parts were very steep and narrow. The ﬁnal bend (the one everyone feared) was a complete hairpin with a drop behind as you turned off several hundred feet. It was an enormous relief to everyone when we turned around the bend. A few hundred yards from the bend and we were on the ﬂat surface of the Base at Dhala. The last vehicles would arrive at 7 pm having taken the convoy some 14 hours to travel about 90 miles from Little Aden to Dhala. What a great relief it was to dismount, have a good wash, a mug of tea and enjoy the cool of the evening. By now we were some several thousand feel above sea level. After six months in Little Aden, B Sqn was posted to Sharjah in what was then Trucial Oman. Along with a LCpl (whose name escapes me) I was asked to go on an LST Ship to keep watch on equipment. Again, this for me was a “one off’ experience as it took a few days to reach our destination. The remainder of the Sqn ﬂew up from the RAF Base at Khormaksar near Aden. The LST Ship was served by a crew of four English Ofﬁcers and several Japanese who looked after us well and we ate mainly rice and ﬁsh caught by them. The sea was very clear and the ﬁshing would take place early evening as the sun set and it went cooler. We arrived in Dubai by tender. Unlike today, Dubai in those days was very primitive. On arrival at Dubai we were taken to Sharjah Camp, an RAF base with a section for 1RD with another section for The Trucial Oman Scouts. We found it much hotter here, humid, energy sapping. In the billets there was
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no air conditioning, just fans. Salt water for showers with special soap, which was not much use. However, we did ﬁnd that Silvikrin Shampoo created a good lather. When off duty, swimming was at a spot beyond Dubai, in the position that large hotels are now built. We would go down by 3 ton truck; Cpl Tony Mustoe was usually in charge with me driving. We had some great times. There were no roads here, just tracks. The salt ﬂats between Sharjah and Dubai were something of which to be aware. Our main function here was to patrol via Baramie Oasis to Muscat, back down the coast via Fujara before cutting inland back to Sharjah.
There would be the odd sand storm, when we would halt and take cover. Following the sand storm, there were mountains to negotiate before arriving at Muscat. Leaving soft sand behind, we encountered mountain tracks. Driving would be undertaken very early morning, resting in the heat of the day and commencing driving again late afternoon. It was while I was in Sharjah that along with Ray Martin, Glynn Padﬁeld and others we were entitled to 14 days leave, which was spent at the Leave Centre, Nyali Beach, Mombasa. Upon return from leave we learned of the terrible accident in which LCpl Tony Mustoe had been killed. During my time with the Regiment, Tony and I had become good friends. His pet name for me was Big Sheri. Shortly before his death, I recall him saying that he had served nine years with the Regiment.
Dubai as it was in 1960 looking across The Creek
This exercise could take as much as seven days. Driving here was much different - soft sands for miles, testing our driving skills to the very limit.
Bearer Party for the cofﬁn of LCpl Mustoe in Muscat
Tprs Mckeown, Willey, Waters, Lovibond, Southall, Laurie, Shorter, LCpl Buckingham, Davis and Padﬁeld
My one regret is that I never returned to Muscat in order that I could pay respects at his grave. Each year on National Service Day, together with my wife Barbara we visit the Arboretum at Alrewas in Staffordshire. We make a special point of looking for Tony’s name on the Big Monument and then place a cross on his marker at The Blues and Royals Plot. A special visit for us was in August 2010, the 50th Anniversary of Tony’s death. The main reason I never had the opportunity to visit Tony’s grave at Muscat was that I was selected to go on the advanced party to Malaya, where I completed the rest of my service. We ﬂew to Aden and sailed on the MV Oxfordshire to Singapore. We then travelled by train to IPOH, where the base was. I had six interesting months in Malaya - but that’s a story for another day. At the end of my service, my comrades and I sailed home to Southampton on the M.V. Nevasa. From Southampton we went to Bovington Camp from where we were de-mobbed. Asked if I would do it all again - the answer would certainly be YES. I was very proud to have served Queen and Country with The Royal Dragoons.
Tprs Mckeown, Willey, Waters, Lovibond, Southall, Laurie, Shorter, LCpl Buckingham, Davis and Padﬁeld
The Life Guards Warrant Ofﬁcers’ Dining Club
he Secretary of the Dining Club Don McKenzie - urges all current and former Warrant Ofﬁcers of The Life Guards, not already members of the Club, to sign up as soon as possible. The Club, which held its ﬁrst Dinner in 2008, sat down almost 50 members in 2011. Don very much hopes to break the 50 barrier in 2012 and details of that Dinner - and membership details - can be found at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 07974 315287 Are you missing? The 2011 Annual Dinner with Major John Lodge as Chairman and Colonel Simon Falkner as guest speaker
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Recollections of a Coronation Day Trumpeter by George Lawn
joined The Life Guards as a ﬁfteen year old boy, the third generation of my family in the Regiment. My Grandfather enlisted into the 2nd Life Guards in 1898 and my father into The Life Guards in 1929. From the early 20th century each Household Cavalry band was allowed four boys. In the nineteen forties and ﬁfties and almost certainly before that, the Household Cavalry seemed to be a law unto themselves. As boys, that was our rank, we were, by King’s Regulations, to train only with other boys. On joining I found that two other boys had just joined, one Life Guard Frank Balaam and one Blue John Rye. We were then quite illegally put into a squad of men namely Gooch squad under Corporal Jock Stout. The photograph below is of Gooch squad under Corporal Jock Stout in March 1951. In this squad photo I am far left front row and boys Balaam and Rye are the two at far right front row. Cpl Stout is in service dress. At that time Corporals and Lance Corporals wore the same 2 chevron rank. Cpl Stout is distinguished by wearing Service Dress, while the Squad is in Battle Dress. Here we were, this only weeks after turning ﬁfteen and not long out of short trousers, ﬁnding ourselves throwing live hand grenades and ﬁring revolver, riﬂe, sten and bren guns and also charging with riﬂe and bayonet. As a very young ﬁfteen year old this was quite a shock and I had little time to think of anything else which could explain the following. Part of the passing out process was to go individually in front of the squad ofﬁcer
Boy Musn Lawn in Mounted Service Dress – ‘Pants, Puttees and Spurs’
Gooch Squad – March 1951 Robertson, ?, ?, ?, CN Brown, J Hacking, E Henley, Walton, R Garood Boy G Lawn, Mills, LCpl ?, Cpl Stout, Glover, Boy F Balaam, Boy J Rye
and answer questions about the regiment such as names and appointments of ofﬁcers. During my test I thought I was doing quite well until I was asked “who is the Earl of Bective?” my reply “I don’t know sir”, to which the ofﬁcer said “what do you mean, you don’t know?”, my reply “I’ve never heard of him sir”, to which he replied in a raised voice “It’s me you bloody fool, it’s me”. (The Earl of Bective, thereafter The Marquis of Headfort, of eccentric nature, died in 2005.) One incident which took place during my boy service occurred as I and Boy Tony Walthew were walking through Windsor Castle. We had been told we could go into the town for a couple of hours, when a relief of the Foot Guard castle guard in grey greatcoats came marching past. Suddenly an enormous Sergeant shouted at us to stop. “He then said “Don’t you salute ofﬁcers in your regiment?” To which Walthew replied, “We didn’t know there was an ofﬁcer, corp”. The Sergeant now somewhat irate, having been addressed as Corporal said “Couldn’t you see he was carrying a sword”, which brought forth from boy Walthew a classic reply, “Everyone in our regiment carries a sword”. The Sergeant then just left us. Sometime in April 1953 each unit in London had to send 100 troops to Westminster Abbey one evening. The two mounted squadrons supplied 50 each with the Life Guards squadron using the four boys from the band of which I was one. We marched from Knightsbridge to the Abbey where we had to clamber up onto planks on scaffolding inside the Abbey. These were to be the seats for the Lords and Ladies attending the coronation. The Garrison Sergeant Major, a Welsh Guard, stood in the centre of the Abbey and said to us when I
say jump, jump up and down. On his command the troops of London District jumped up and down. These seats were now judged safe for the nobility thanks to the risks taken hundreds of soldiers. From the time the mounted squadrons were formed after World War II each Household Cavalry band supplied three trumpeters to these squadrons as had been the case since the late 1700s. The barrack guard trumpeters at both Knightsbridge and Windsor were the younger members of the bands who were placed on their respective bands guard roll but continued to serve and play in the band. Myself and Brian Frost were both Life Guards. Sometime in the summer the band at Knightsbridge would play once or twice a week, engagements permitting, in the yard between 11 a.m. and 12 a.m. as an entertainment for the troops grooming outside. This was an old established duty from at least 1912. Playing would commence immediately the duly trumpeter had sounded stables. Occasionally 12 trumpeters from the band conducted by sounding a harmonized version of stables known as Massed Stables. I was on duty the day before the event until 9 am on the day, which meant that I blew reveille at 2.30 am, as far as I can remember, and continued with duty calls for the Sovereign’s Escort until relieved by Boy B Frost, also of The Life Guards Band, who was then on duty for the rest of the day. I do remember very early on Coronation Day while still duty trumpeter going to the back gate and seeing RAF personnel asleep on the pavements complete with riﬂe and groundsheets. Fifty-eight years after the Coronation of HM The Queen, the two trumpeters who shared the duty trumpeter role at Knightsbridge on that auspicious day met again. Our picture
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shows Brian Frost with a state trumpet on the left, taken when we two met on New Year’s Eve 2011. In passing let me make a couple of observations on traditions and dress
from the past. The Bandmasters of the Household Cavalry bands always wore their aiguillettes from the right shoulder. Below is a photograph of Bandmaster Corporal Waterson, Bandmaster Corporal of 1 LG 1863 - 1879, this rank
eventually rising to Warrant Ofﬁcer. Also no badges of rank were worn by the Bandmasters on any form of dress, as illustrated by the photograph of Mr Fred Haines, Bandmaster 1LG from 1904 - 1907.
Frost and Lawn
Bandmaster Corporal Waterson
Mr Fred Haines, Bandmaster 1LG
Red Wings - 1 LG Charger by Maj Christopher Haworth-Booth
I came across this headstone marking the grave of “RED WINGS 1902- 36. The charger of Avenel St George, 1st Life Guards.” It is on the tee of the 8th hole of the golf course at the Priory Bay Hotel, Bembridge, Isle of Wight. Presumably the house was once the home of the St. George family. Red Wings must have been much revered, and got through the 1914-18 war and survived to a remarkable age.
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Tommy Humphreys - 100th Birthday Celebrations
ormer Corporal Tommy Humphreys served in The Life Guards from 1936 to 1947 when he transferred his allegiance to the Royal Army Service Corps (RASC) later to become the Royal Corps of Transport (RCT) and more latterly the Royal Logistic Corps (RLC). On completion of his Army service, Tommy joined Pinewood Film Studios where he was employed in the security department rising eventually to be Head of Security. During Tommy’s time at the studios he met many, if not all, of the world’s most famous stars. Tommy eventually retired and now lives in a nursing home at Wexham. On 4th May 2011 he reached his 100th birthday and it was decided to hold his birthday in the Warrant Ofﬁcers and Non Commissioned Ofﬁcers Mess in Windsor. Many of his family ﬂew in from Australia to attend. Mr John Lloyd, attired in the uniform of The Queen’s Body Guard of the Yeoman
of the Guard read out his birthday card from Her Majesty The Queen. RQMC(E) Stainsby read out the letter from the Colonel of The Life Guards and Mr Geoffrey Knowles read out the letter from the Brickhanger’s Association. Two dismounted dutymen from HCMR
and three members of the riding staff, together with horses, attended and as sample of the many photographs taken are shown. We all hope it was a memorable day for a good old Life Guardsman and he continues to enjoy many more.
Exercise Iron Horse 2011 – Return to Bosnia
by Mr Ken Robertson & Mr Stuart Gibbons (both Late RHG/D)
ost will remember the 29 April 2011 as the day of the Royal Wedding: for us it was the perfect opportunity to make best use of the quiet roads and make our way through London to Dover to catch the ferry to Calais. The party was made up of retired Blues and Royals SNCOs Chris Elliot, Stu Gibbons and Ken Robertson; a much smaller group than we have been used to on previous IRON HORSE trips, mainly due to Operations, but also due to the declining interest amongst serving members of the regiment and new rules on Battleﬁeld Tours which make public funding virtually impossible and therefore puts the cost beyond the reach of more junior riders. After arriving in Calais the group made a beeline for Trier in Germany, a journey of around 400 miles. With Messrs Robertson and Gibbons on BMW GSs and Chris Elliott on a Honda Varadero the journey was relatively easy and meant we were eating into the miles early on in the trip, and to make things better the weather was sunny and warm. A night on the town with a few beers and the old favourites “Doner mit tzatziki und pommes bitte” and “Bratwurst mit Mayo bitte, und, ja, noch zweimal bier”. The following day we set off at 0900 hrs with our sights set on Bregenz in Austria, and after a trip of about 320
The Three Amigos in the Alps - Left to Right, Gibbons, Ellio
miles we arrived at 1730 hrs at the next campsite by Lake Constance. As one would expect, the facilities were very good and the roads in great condition; we did manage a few more currywursts and beers that night and met some local friendlies. We had spent part of the day in the Black Forest in Germany, which was truly amazing and a trip all by itself; now we were entering the
Austrian Alps and the scenery was absolutely stunning. Throughout this time the main topic of conversation with anyone that we came across was the Royal Wedding; it was all over the European News and everywhere we went there was genuine interest. The Sunday gave us the habitual lie-in, thanks to beers and bratties, and we
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set off around 0930 hrs and for the ﬁrst time, left the Autobahns and hit the ‘A’ roads, travelling through the Alps until we ﬁnished up at an old hunting lodge in the Dolomites that evening. In the Duran Pass in Italy that day we had a mixture of all seasons, ending up in a hailstorm before we arrived at our destination. The next day we made it into Slovenia, where we made camp in the border village of Udine before heading off the following day towards Bosnia. Our satnavs didn’t have any local mapping, so we switched to reversionary mode for the remainder of the trip; the weather was perfect and the roads were surprisingly good too. We arrived in Bosnia on the Tuesday morning not far from Gradiska and headed straight for Banja Luka and the Metal Factory where so many members of the Regiment had spent time over the SFOR (Stabilisation Force) period. The Hotel Italy was comfortable and very reasonable (they haven’t caught onto camping like the rest of Europe -that’s our excuse and we’re sticking to it!) and a good staging post for the next day’s travel to Maglaj. We aren’t going to go into the ‘Regimental History’ bit here for three reasons: there isn’t room; many people have their own distinct memories of their time there; and it hasn’t been written yet -hopefully the photographs will trigger some memories.
Maglaj School, and that ﬂag again!
We arrived in Maglaj on the Wednesday having travelled via Prinjavor and Doboj. Maglaj holds many fond memories for members of D Sqn (RHG/D) as was, and we rode up and down what were Routes DOBBIN and CHARGER seeking out old haunts. The impression of Maglaj was that it has become a
The new (Turkish funded) mosque in Maglaj
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Leaving Maglaj for Zepce with the Sqn ﬂag
HCR BGHQ in Zepce
town divided between those who have and have not (much like the rest of Europe!), many houses remain the ruins they were when we were there in 1994, whilst there is a brand new mosque and the school we called home for six months has seen signiﬁcant investment – apparently both a gift from Turkey. We stayed the night in Maglaj at the Hotel Greb, and after a further tour around the town the following morning we departed for Livno via Zepce, where we stopped at the factory for a photo shoot; it was good to see Jeff Holbrook’s rose bushes were still outside what was the HQ of BRITCAVBAT.
Sunday had us travelling north and arriving at Lake Worthersee in Austria for the night; a vain attempt was made to ﬁnd a bar that was showing the Manchester United game, until eventually we had to settle for a bar with a betting screen showing the score; all was well (if you were a Red Devils fan at least) as Man Utd won, but the clear winner was the giros, deﬁnitely the best of the trip.
From what we could tell, not much had changed in Zenica, Vitez and Glamoc on our trip to Livno, where we bumped into an Irish Army European Veriﬁcation Team. The roads were in great condition (certainly a change in that department) and with good weather we were having a fantastic time. On Friday it was time to head back and we returned to Croatia via Drvar, Glamoc, Sastor Mountain and Bos Gradiska, spending the night at Knin, where there was a deﬁnite feel of progress and ‘Europeanisation’, with plenty of bars and restaurants. On Saturday we hit the Dalmatian Coast and with it being Cavalry Memorial Weekend, had our own celebration with a copious amount of local ale until Ken had to be put to bed. Anyone who rides a motorbike and who has not ridden the Dalmatian Coast must add it to their list of ‘must rides’; sadly we exited Bosnia too far to the north, and as such missed a lot of the coast, but the roads were fantastic, the scenery amazing and the weather topped it off to make it a truly superb riding experience.
Checkpoint ‘Spotty Dog’ - what a change!
As with every IRON HORSE exercise, this stage of the trip tends to be slightly less enjoyable with the impending return to Blighty weighing on our minds; it’s easy to start thinking that you can keep riding around Europe indeﬁnitely. By Tuesday 10 May we had made it to Detmold where we were hosted by Chris Elliott’s brother Phil (RHG/D 1975-82), who put on an excellent BBQ with the accompanying beer and ‘craic’, reminiscing on days of yore, comrades sadly no longer with us, and how old we are all getting! After a quick stop off the following morning at the WO’s & CoH’s Mess at Lothian Barracks for a photo shoot, it was back on the road for a ‘trip down the memory autobahn’ to get to the ferry on time; this stretch has certainly not improved with time and was very much as we remembered it. The Regimental Motorcycle Club (HCMCC) has lost its ‘mojo’ over the last few years due to members leaving or being posted. It is hoped that more serving members will be able to ﬁnd the time (and hopefully the wherewithal) to join us in future years. Suggestions on battleﬁelds to visit in the future will be gratefully accepted.
The old WO’s & CoH’s Mess at Lothian Barracks - now a church