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THE HOUSEHOLD CAVALRY JOURNAL 2012/13


The Household Cavalry Journal

Incorporating The Acorn and The Blue and Royal No. 21 2012/13 Editor: Lt Col (Retd) HSJ Scott, The Life Guards

Colonel in Chief Her Majesty The Queen

Colonel of The Life Guards and Gold Stick: Field Marshal 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 P A Bedford, 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 published by Brian Smith Associates, 145 St Pancras, Chichester, West Sussex PO19 7SH. Tel: 01243 576279 Email: brian@briansmithassociates.co.uk

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Contents Preface by The Commander Household Cavalry.......................... 3

Household Cavalry Regiment Foreword by the Commanding Officer ......................................... 5 Diary of Events .................................................................................. 6 A Squadron ........................................................................................ 8 B Squadron ......................................................................................... 9 C Squadron ....................................................................................... 11 D Squadron ...................................................................................... 12 Headquarters Squadron ................................................................. 15 Warrant Officers’ and Non Commissioned Officers’ Mess ........ 16 Quartermaster’s Department ......................................................... 17 Quartermaster (Equipment) Department .................................... 18 Light Aid Detachment .................................................................... 19

Training Wing .................................................................................. 21 The Band of The Blues and Royals ................................................ 21 BATUS - The Regimental Deployment ......................................... 23 BATUS - Command Troop - Summer 2012 .................................. 24 BATUS - C Squadron - Ex Prairie Thunder Pt 2 ........................... 25 Op Olympics .................................................................................... 27 London Poppy Day 2012 ................................................................ 28 What Went Wrong at Arnhem ....................................................... 29 Catering Department ...................................................................... 29 HCR Medical Centre ....................................................................... 31 Images from Household Cavalry Regiment ................................ 32

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment Foreword by the Commanding Officer ........................................ 34 Diary of Events ................................................................................ 35 The Life Guards Squadron ............................................................. 37 The Blues and Royals Mounted Squadron ................................... 38 Headquarters Squadron ................................................................ 40 Warrant Officers’ and Non Commissioned Officers’ Mess ........ 43 The Forge .......................................................................................... 44 Riding Staff 2012 .............................................................................. 45 Musical Ride ..................................................................................... 46 Training Wing .................................................................................. 46

Pages 58 - 69

Household Cavalry Cresta Run 2012 ............................................ 64 Household Cavalry Nordic Skiing 2011/12 .......................... 66 Martial Arts at the Regiment ................................................... 67 The Joy of Triathlon .................................................................. 67 The Tough Mudder Challenge ................................................ 68 Rowing the Atlantic .................................................................. 69

News from the Associations The Life Guards Association Annual Report 2012 ...................... 71 Minutes of the 78th AGM of The Life Guards Association ........ 71 The Life Guards Association and Charitable Trusts .................. 73 The Life Guards Association Notices ............................................ 75 The Life Guards Association Regional Representatives ............ 75 The Blues and Royals Association Annual Report 2012 ............. 78 Minutes of the AGM of The Blues and Royals Association ........ 79 The Blues and Royals Association Regional Representatives ... 80 Household Cavalry Central Charitable Fund .............................. 82 Household Cavalry Foundation .................................................... 83 Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund ...................... 84

Pages 34 - 57

Winter Training Troop 2011-2012 .................................................. 47 AGC (SPS) Detachment .................................................................. 47 Chaplaincy ....................................................................................... 48 The Band of The Life Guards ......................................................... 48 HM The Queen’s Jubilee River Boat Pageant - 3 June 2012 ........ 50 The Diamond Jubilee Carriage Procession ................................... 51 Spruce Meadows 2012 .................................................................... 53 Sponsored Ceremonial Equipment Clean .................................... 53 Home Headquarters Household Cavalry .................................... 54 Images of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment .............. 56

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up HMCR Football Tour 2012 ............................................................. 58 Household Cavalry Golf 2012 ........................................................ 59 HCR Regimental Rugby 2012 ........................................................ 61 Sailing - Ex COCKNEY COWES ................................................... 61 Sailing - Ex CANARY GOLD - Jan 2012 ....................................... 62 Cricket ............................................................................................... 63

Pages 5 - 33

Pages 71 - 144

The Jonathan Woodgate Memorial ............................................... 84 Obituaries The Life Guards ............................................................ 85 Obituaries The Blues and Royals ................................................... 86 Nominal Rolls .................................................................................. 96 Notices ............................................................................................ 104 Household Cavalry Associations Dorset ........................................................... 106 North Staffs .................................................. 108 North East .................................................... 110 Features .......................................................................................... 112

Cover Photographs: Front: An HCR Observation Post at the Brigade Combined Arms Battle Demonstration, Sidbury Hill, 2 Mar 2012. Back: The Queen’s Life Guard changing in all weathers.

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Preface

By Colonel S H Cowen, The Blues and Royals Commander Household Cavalry

HM The Queen joins the Household Cavalry at Windsor - 26 Nov 2012

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n 26 November 2012, Her Majesty The Queen visited The Household Cavalry at Combermere Barracks. Both regiments were in Barracks, the Reconnaissance Regiment preparing to deploy on operations, the Mounted Regiment preparing for a State Visit. In the walk round, Her Majesty met all ranks of The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals and saw the skill and high professionalism, for which we are recognised, in these vastly differing roles. Her Majesty also met the team under WO2 Aston who had completed a sponsored swim to raise funds for the Operational Casualties Fund. The visit embodied the unique and special structure of the Household Cavalry; our privileged position as Household Troops, the willingness to train and work harder, with the extra commitment it requires, to achieve excellence in these roles, and our care for the regimental family. There was also one typically Household Cavalry moment when the scaffolding for the photograph with Her Majesty nearly collapsed into the Officer’s Mess garden due to the waterlogged lawn. Reinforcing the age old adage that we are invariably on wobbly ground and working like mad to preserve our serene appearance. The Commanding Officers will cover the detail of the eclectic demands of

the Diamond Jubilee year, which were many, and I wish to focus on the longterm effects of some of the key decisions that were made in 2012. I have previously mentioned the Strategic Defence and Security Review but the final decisions have only recently been announced. I can confirm that The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals remain on the Army List and the Household Cavalry will be structured with the Household Cavalry Regiment, an Armoured Cavalry Regiment, based at Combermere Barracks and the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, delivering Mounted Ceremonial, based in Hyde Park Barracks. Whilst we should be reassured that the Army Command Group has recognised the utility, skill and efficiency with which we deliver these roles, we should not be complacent and note that other Royal Armoured Corps regiments with equally distinguished history and heritage have been amalgamated in the Review. This recognition has been forged by the hard work of recent generations to make the Union work and has been delivered through operational excellence. I would commend to those serving, the motto of The Royals “Spectamor Agendo - Let us by our deeds be known”. It has guided us well and will set our stock for the

future. We also established the Household Cavalry Foundation in 2012. It was developed to ensure that we plan and provide pastoral care clearly and efficiently, that we communicate to the wider regimental family and supporters well, and, when necessary, we raise funds successfully. This Journal provides more detail on the Foundation but I would highlight three points. First, when I assumed command of the Household Cavalry, no-one could tell me exactly what funds we had available to provide pastoral care and what funds we needed to do so in the future, the Foundation provides coherent answers for this. Second, The Objects are now clearly laid out: our casualties, serving soldiers, veterans and their dependants, our heritage and our horses. The last object, our horses, is new and has generated debate. However, the horse is inextricably woven into the identity of the Household Cavalry and therefore should be recognised in our charitable objects. Also, the public increasingly takes interest in animal welfare and our care of “the cavalry black”, working or retired, should be above question. Third, the establishment of a Foundation does not undermine the roles of the Associations and regimental identities

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but recognises that our soldiers have served and campaigned together now for twenty years and our pastoral care should be transparent and seamless across the Household Cavalry. It is also timely to evolve our charitable structure into the Foundation as the Operational Casualties Fund has reached its initial target of raising over £1.5 M for an endowment fund. I also hope that by the end of 2013, we will have freed the Museum Trust from its bank loan, and the Museum can then contribute to delivering our wider charitable objects. I would like to thank Alistair Wood and Alex MacEwen for their huge commitment over the last year in further establishing the Casualties Fund and achieving the immediate fund raising target. The fund does much more than provide financial support and is now well set-up within the Foundation to assist our casualties in rehabilitation, training for new careers, and support now and into the future. I would also like to thank Peter Townley for his significant fund-raising for the Casualties Fund but especially for the Museum Trust. Looking forward, there is much to celebrate and commemorate. The Household Cavalry Regiment will return from Op HERRICK 18, the last scheduled deployment to Afghanistan, in late Autumn 2013. There are plans to exercise the Freedoms of The City of London and Windsor on return. The Presentation of Standards is now set for Wednesday 28 May 2014, with the

Presentation Parade on Horse Guards in the morning, followed by a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in the afternoon. We are also planning to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Household Cavalry’s gallant fight at the start of the 1st World War at Zandvoorde in October 2014 and the 200th Anniversary of Waterloo in June 2015. Part of our commemoration will be to update the displays in the Museum for these major campaigns, but also to develop the exhibits of our more recent history, especially the operations since the 2nd World War. So I would again ask for any memorabilia or diaries to be sent to the Museum. Whilst we can robustly look forward to the future, we also have to recognise there are risks and challenges. You will all have seen the recent media speculation on the future of Hyde Park Barracks. Whilst the MoD have undertaken market testing for commercial interest in the site and established a project to consider the viability of relocating the Mounted Regiment, it remains speculation and several conditions have to be met, not least clarification that the site can be used for alternative use than a Barracks, for which an Act of Parliament was passed transferring management from the Crown Estate, who retain the freehold, to the Royal Parks. Also, amidst complex change, the Army has elected to restructure its bands and the provision of military music; the Bands of The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals are under review

but we continue to defend rigorously the unique sight and sound of the Mounted Bands and their place in the Household Cavalry. I have also mentioned in previous Journals that the appointment of Commander Household Cavalry has been removed. The Household Cavalry will now adopt an appointment, similar to the Foot Guards, with a senior officer assuming these responsibilities alongside his wider Army duties. The Lieutenant Colonel Commanding, should we revert to he previous title, will also be Silver-Stick in Waiting, although the duties may be delegated to one of the Commanding Officers as has been the custom in the past. As the responsibilities of HQ Household Cavalry are wider than Foot Guards’ RHQs, we propose to reinforce the HQ and hard pressed Regimental Adjutant. All members of the Household Cavalry will therefore greatly appreciate that Major General Edward Smyth-Osbourne CBE (late The Life Guards) will be appointed as the first Lieutenant Colonel and will assume the appointment at the end of the year on his return from Afghanistan. As you will read, it has been a busy demanding year for the regiments but they have thrived on the tempo of life. We are well set for the future and I look forward to seeing you over the forthcoming year.

Tempest Photography ©

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Household Cavalry Regiment Foreword

By Lieutenant Colonel J P Eyre, The Blues and Royals Commanding Officer, Household Cavalry Regiment

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n final analysis 2012 will prove to have been a key year for the Household Cavalry Regiment. General Carter’s Army 2020 Study concluded directing the Regiment to become one of the Army’s three new Armoured Cavalry regiments, but more of that later. 2012 was also the first year in many that none of the squadrons were deployed on operations, however despite this the year proved no less busy, with a protein-rich and well-invested training year, a healthy dose of adventurous training and sport, interspersed with support to the Olympic Games. After several years of supporting various brigades on operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Regiment found itself fully embraced by its parent brigade – 1 Mechanized Brigade, based in Tidworth. The Brigade having been warned off for operations in 2013, developed an ambitious generic training programme for its units, which ensured a constructive and challenging series of exercises, taking the regiment from UK to Germany and onto Canada. The first half of the year was therefore entirely focussed on core reconnaissance training as part of the recently re-termed Hybrid Foundation Training. The regiment re-established its close relationship with Salisbury Plain, attending and hosting brigade study days and conducting troop and squadron level training prior to deploying to Germany to conduct CATT and CAST. This proved a hugely valuable opportunity to reset the mindset of the regiment from complex counter insurgency back to rather more conventionally focussed operations. For a few senior LGs this provided a welcome return to Paderborn and the Second in Command took the lead in introducing the new generation to his previous haunts. For all 3 Sqns and BGHQ, their time in Germany proved to be essential training before it stepped off back to the wilds of the Canadian Prairie. BATUS in 2012 reaffirmed itself as a premier class training facility – providing space, time, live firing and a thinking enemy for the ‘simulated’ phase. Each exercise, now named PRAIRIE THUNDER ran for some 30 days, split between live firing from

individual to combined arms and Battle Group (BG) level to force on force training with simulated weapon effects. Both A and C Sqns in CVR(T) made the very most of the time, re-learning and refining classic recce skills, with particularly emphasis on operating at night, deep ‘find’ and the Joint and Deep Battle. Inevitably the cruel mistress that is CVR(T) tempered ambitions and added to the considerable workload of the crews and the Fitter Sections, but overall the month long exercises provided unrivalled training. For B Sqn, the nascent Brigade Recce Force (BRF), the training bill was longer and they and the BGHQ spent over 50 days on exercise. B Sqn this time equipped with ‘Armed Land Rovers’ (R-WIMK), provided the more discreet and light reconnaissance, conducting long term OPs, Close Target Reconnaissance and, when required, strike operations for the Bde. With the help of a few specialist advisors, the Sqn was able to build early foundations for its future role as the BRF in Afghanistan. For the BGHQ, BATUS was an excellent run out conducting reconnaissance at Brigade level and the regiment was able to field a strong HQ, or certainly full of strong characters. On balance, with enough sleep, food, administration, mosquito repellent, books and shooting magazines (Int and Adjt respectively)

and rare calm on the brigade net, the HQ proved highly effective and delivered in style. Back in Windsor, D Sqn has maintained its strong and vital link with 16 Air Assault Bde, providing critical support to the high readiness Air Assault Battle Groups, initially based on 3 PARA and then 5 SCOTS. The Sqn and its troops found themselves well hosted by and effectively integrated into the BGs, providing the essential additional recce and fire support for the relatively lightly equipped force. Inevitably the mood of the Sqn seems to ebb and flow with international events, with often excited and dynamic planning taking place at the breakfast table much to the chagrin of the other officers. Needless to say there were some wry smiles around the regiment when D Sqn replaced its speculative maps of Africa and the Middle East for ones of East London as the Sqn found itself warned off to support the Olympic Games. Work continues with 16 AA Bde to ensure this operationally proven and mutually beneficial relationship endures in the Army’s era of change. The Regiment deployed some 200 soldiers to support the Olympic Games, initially D and then A Sqn provided a large contingent of manpower to underwrite the security of the Games.

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Early misgivings were rapidly replaced by national pride and genuine pleasure for the job in hand; aided, of course, by a number of free tickets to many of the events. But most notable and welcome was the very positive reaction of the British public to the troops. The second half of the year was focussed almost entirely on preparing for Afghanistan. With both B and C Sqn warned off to deploy on Op HERRICK 18 as the BRF and the FR Sqn respectively, the HQ to run ISTAR and the Brigade manoeuvre assets and HQ Sqn to form the Brigade Troops Echelon providing support to over 1000 troops. Again, the training has been impressively resourced and the effect of being on the Army’s main effort has been demonstrable with the quality tone of the training and the equipment improving significantly over the years. The HCR deploying as the ISTAR Group, will find itself in a very different theatre to last time. The Afghan Security Forces (ANSF) have increased and improved exponentially and over the course of 2013 will take over responsibility for Helmand from ISAF. Consequently, the UK’s footprint will reduce – a sign of progress. Similarly, UK operations will be tempered and will be largely by exception as the Afghans take the lead and control of their country. It is in this context that C Sqn was stood down, with the decision to withdraw CVR(T) and the Formation Reconnaissance squadron from theatre. Frustrating, but ultimately positive. For B Sqn there has been no such let up, and as the BRF they have conducted a substantial amount of training, stretching from Summer Leave all

the way through to their deployment in April. The Sqn, bolstered by volunteers from across the regiment and augmented with the Recce Platoon from 4 RIFLES, has benefited from a refined and comprehensive training package, however the old cliché of: ‘it’s a young man’s game’, has never been more apposite with the inherent physical and mental demands and the many nights away from home. As I write this, the squadron are returning from dismounted live firing at Castlemartin and are about to embark on their final exercise on Salisbury Plain. They have been exceptionally trained, and are fully ready to deliver their essential role in disrupting the flow of arms to the insurgents and thereby protecting our forces, the ANSF and ultimately the success of the mission. It is appropriate, therefore, to take this opportunity to thank the ‘bedrock’ of the regiment: the families, who have supported husbands, fathers, sons throughout, who somehow manage/ tolerate the absence of their Household Cavalryman, and yet keep providing unfaltering support. The families, combined with the power of the new HCF and the rest of the team at home, are vital to our professional success for which we will always be indebted.

The regiment has continued its recent tradition and done particularly well at the Cresta, contributing to the Army’s first win over the other Services in 7 years. While the focus of 2013 will be on Afghanistan and the safety of our troops, sports and Adventure Training will be all the more important back in Windsor and with that in mind the regiment is planning a number of expeditions over the next year, including sailing in the Mediterranean, diving in Africa and a joint expedition to basecamp in Everest. And what next? On return from Helmand, the regiment will begin to reconfigure to become an ‘Armoured Cavalry’ regiment, still based in Windsor. In practice and structurally, this means little change but with the impending advent of FRES Scout there will be some considerable work to shape the regiment for a step change in capability. The ‘sunny uplands’ of a new vehicle fleet for the Armoured Cavalry regiments is tantalisingly close, although I know that I am not the first reconnaissance Commanding Officer to have said this! But our love/hate relationship with CVR(T), introduced in the era of the Vulcan Bomber and the Chieftain Tank, will have to endure for a just a little more, until the impressive Scout vehicle arrives.

As I hope you will gather from this journal, 2012 has not been a year of all work and no play, and the regiment’s teams – rugby and football have done well. So too the ski teams, or at least the Nordic team, who despite their relatively novice status managed to win a number of team and individual awards. For the Alpine Team the doctor’s bill has been high, although there have been some impressive individual performances.

In sum, 2012 has been a demanding but valuable year, ensuring the regiment is well prepared for operations and in particular Afghanistan. Furthermore 2012 has guaranteed the regiment’s place in the future Army’s order of battle, equipped with the most advanced and capable reconnaissance vehicle and manned as ever by the very finest.

the focus for the latter part of the year returned to Mission Specific Training in preparation for another deployment to Helmand province for the majority of the Regiment in the summer of 2013.

Owing to budgetary constraints, the 1 Mech Bde exercises had to optimise any and every opportunity including attachments to other units’ training, such as B Sqn forming part of the infantry light role recce cadre course training package as OPFOR, to allow them time on RWMIK, training which would not otherwise have been possible.

Diary of Events

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he first half of 2012 saw the focus of Regimental events firmly on Hybrid Foundation Training. Amid sweeping budgetary cuts, the Regiment continued to piece together exercises and training events to meet the various stages of collective training, from Battlegroup Headquarters (BG HQ) level, right down to Troop level training for A, B and C Squadrons and support elements whilst D Sqn continued to support 16 Air Assault Brigade Airborne Task Force (ABTF) and train under their guidance. All this was aimed at preparing the Regiment to hit the ground running for the major training event of the first half of the year – a battle group deployment as part of 1 Mech Bde to BATUS. Following this successful deployment,

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January and February 2012 saw the training focus concentrate on low level troop and squadron training for A, B and C Sqns. This took the form of a couple of one week long deployments onto Salisbury Plain where the Sqns worked on their classic formation reconnaissance skills such as occupation of hides and observation posts, obstacle crossing and cross country mobility skills and tactics. D Sqn continued with similar training alongside the Pathfinder Platoon and other ISTAR assets in 16 Bde as part of the Eagle series of exercises.

In addition to the challenges of conducting build up training in the field and barracks in preparation for CATT/ CAST in Germany in March, Bde HQ directed that HCR put together a formation reconnaissance demonstration for the remainder of the Bde. BGHQ began its frantic work piece together a grand display event with very little funding, this was overcome in true Household


HCR in BATUS, Suffield, Canada

Cavalry style with imagination, beginning with phone calls to various very senior officers of the Regiment and ending with some clever management accounting; the result was a spectacular combined arms demonstration. The full breadth of ISTAR platforms were fielded, with UAVs, a Tornado and an Apache attack helicopter, unmanned ground sensors and EW platforms all to set the scene for a squadron of CVR(T). The Recce Sqn tracked a column of enemy tanks (CR2!) and SCUD launchers (REME SVRs draped in cam nets!) reporting on their movements and intentions to an assembly area in front of the audience where a precision recce strike enhanced by Royal Engineer BATSIMs was a fitting finale. This certainly showed the potency and force multiplying effect that a Combined Arms ISTAR BG deployed in the field could have in the future. As it turned out, the demonstration was both hugely successful and worthwhile as it ended up also being watched by the majority of key stakeholders in the wider Army, a fortunate A2020 ‘moment’. The latter part of March saw a Regimental deployment to a highly successful combined CAST and CATT in Germany where the worth of a properly resourced formation recce battle group deployed in the field was not lost on the directing staff or indeed the Bde HQ staff. The majority of the Regiment enjoyed some well earned Easter leave during April; on their return at the beginning of May, BGHQ, A and B Sqns deployed to BATUS. Exercise PRAIRIE THUNDER 1 from the mid-May to mid-June proved an excellent training opportunity for the

Regiment in a deployable Brigade context; the first time this had happened since 1998. A Sqn returned to Windsor on conclusion of this exercise and the remainder of the Regiment were joined by C Sqn for Exercise PRAIRIE THUNDER 2 running until the end of July and with the majority of the Regiment now seasoned Prairie veterans, proved even more successful. The Regiment recovered back to the UK over the course of August having enhanced a very good reputation and proved the immeasurable value of a deployed formation reconnaissance regiment and the force multiplier it provided for the higher headquarters. The latter part of June through to mid August also saw most of D Sqn deployed to support the London 2012 Olympics amid the G4S security saga; they were also joined by elements of the returning A Sqn as the commitment increased with the approach of the games. Needless to say, the professionalism of our soldiers and the gratitude of the organising committee and wider public have rightly been well publicised. After the well-earned summer leave and Olympic games tasks, the Autumn (or Fall for those who had gone native in Canada) saw the focus for elements of BG HQ, B, C and HQ Sqns switch to Mission Specific Training (MST). Bearing in mind that they are backfilled from the remaining Sqns not deploying in order to reach their wartime establishment, the majority of the Regiment was now either conduct-

Mission accomplished. The demonstration day finale, complete with SCUD Launcher making a beeline for the exit

ing MST or supporting D Sqn to fulfil their ABTF duties. Any gaps in the scheduled exercise programme was then crammed with individual MST, including team medic or vallon (IED sweeping) courses; driver training on Afghanistan specific platforms and a dozens more specialist skills. There was no reprieve for BGHQ, forming the core of the 1 Mech Bde ISTAR cell, with ever more CAST and other training events consuming much of their time. It was not until November the individual sub-units came together under BG HQ for collective MST, when the FR Sqn (C Sqn) and the BRF (B Sqn) took control of the Thetford training area for the excellent CFX. Despite coming pleasantly early (rather than immediately prior to deployment), the exercise’s realism and resources, including a full range of platforms and hundreds of civilian and Afghan National Army (ANA) actors, provided the Squadrons with a springboard in terms of training standard. Following on for this, the final elements of the Regiment then completed the CAST in Warminster and CALFEXs (Live firing ex) down at Castlemartin Ranges where valuable time was spent on the vehicles in which the sub-units will be deploying and getting up to speed on weapons and communication systems amongst others. Finally, the year culminated with a visit

The WMIKs getting ready for action in BATUS

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by HM The Queen to Combermere Bks at the end of November. This coincided neatly with the Household Cavalry

Mounted Regiment also being in camp preparing for an imminent Windsor State Visit. She was treated to a visit

of the Training Wing stables and a full HCR capability display before enjoying lunch in the Officers’ Mess.

A Squadron

A Sqn on the Advance

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012 has, predictably, been a hectic but enjoyable year for the Sqn as the Regiment prepares for Op HERRICK 18. There was certainly no time for New Year blues as January disappeared in the usual rush to complete career and professional courses; between B3 Gunnery Course, JAVELIN Operator’s course and the usual D&M and Signals cadres, the Sqn was kept very busy. We bade a fond farewell to our 2IC, Capt PR Walker-Okeover who has left to become a teacher, being replaced by the Sqn’s very own Capt GR Ashby. We also marked the arrival of CoH Mowatt into 2 Tp and CoH Harrison into Support Tp. Meanwhile SCpl Salina took over as A Sqn’s new SQMC, relieving WO2 Forsdick who has moved to the Training Wing. Finally, we also received a much needed draft of keen young blood from HCMR to bring us up to full strength, although we wonder if Windsor was quite so attractive to them when introduced to Sqn Leader’s PT.

In late January, CoH Hogg was given the daunting task of converting the entire Sqn onto CVR(T)’s latest modification, BGT(I); as always, he went about it with his usual cheerful enthusiasm and, ably assisted by LCoH Cole and LCoH Dallimer, managed to have us ready for a Regimental Gunnery week in Lulworth in early February. At this stage the Sqn also welcomed three new Tp Leaders: Lt AGF Horne, Ct JB Barnes and 2Lt J Carefoot, who took over Support, 1 and 2 Tp respectively. Their arrival, combined with Lt HJB Jordan’s return from his 4 month tour of skiing in Verbier, meant that the Sqn was fully up to strength just in time for our CT1/2 Training on Salisbury Plain. The first two days of exercise were devoted to assisting in the Regimental capability demonstration to the assembled masses of the rest of 1 Mech Bde. A Sqn provided the CVR(T) manoeuvre piece and battled through breakdowns, mist, a 30km road move down the A303 in rush hour and malfunctioning parachute

A Scimitar moving into yet another OP screen

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flares, to line up triumphantly in front of the Bde after a Sqn withdrawal in contact. The rest of the week was spent making sure the Sqn was ready for CATT and ultimately BATUS later in the year. Particularly memorable moments included Lt AGF Horne mistakenly following the Sqn ambulance before admitting he had lost his entire Tp over the net and a Sqn obstacle crossing in full CBRN suits complete with sleeting hail. Tpr Lovegrove was awarded the Sqn Leader’s ‘Best Tpr’ award (and a shiny new daysack) for his assistance to the SCM in executing a dreaded Squadron replen at night, when he showed considerable initiative and understanding to help demystify the dreaded cyalume forest for incoming vehicles. Time continued to fly and the Sqn Ldr barely had time for two rounds of rollback re-shows before we were straight out to Germany for two weeks of CATT in March. Fortunately we had been bolstered by the arrival of LCoH Rosendale and the return of LCoH Eade, who had just finished his FAC course. Long days in the simulators combined with comprehensive debriefs at the end of each day helped us hone our Tp and Sqn drills ready for the real thing in BATUS. Tpr Bodilly (GW Tp) received particular mention for conducting a ‘Rorke’s Drift’ style final stand against hordes of advancing enemy armour, whilst the 2IC got both a medal and a reprimand for having the Sqn attack the entire Enemy Divisional Reserve to ‘defend’ B Sqn to our rear. Fortunately it wasn’t all work and the Tp Ldrs organised a spectacular night out in Hamburg, even managing to corral everybody back onto the bus the following afternoon. After some well earned Easter Leave, the Sqn was straight back to work to complete our final preparations for Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER 1 in BATUS,


The Sqn ready to go

Canada. After some slight delays, we finally arrived at Camp Crowfoot to be greeted by SCpl Salina and CoH Walsh, whose teams had already been working hard to make sure our takeover went smoothly. Unfortunately BATUS wasn’t really built to accommodate an entire Brigade so, despite the Squadron Leader’s attempts to make us feel at home by taking us on 5am death runs, it was with a certain amount of relief the Sqn deployed onto the area. There

followed two weeks live firing, moving from basic Section work all the way up to Sqn withdrawals at night, with a special bespoke package for GW and Support Troops. Very long days combined with even longer road moves at night took a predictable toll on the vehicles and SSgt Oates’s fitter section in particular, worked incredibly hard to keep the Sqn moving, although LCoH Cole’s vehicle only managed to function for 48 hours throughout the entire exercise. The Sqn acquitted itself very well however, particularly with its gunnery and it was obvious the hard work earlier in the year (especially at driver level) had been worth it. Next was the TES phase, another two weeks, where we got the chance to integrate fully into the ISTAR BG, normally undertaking a 2448 hour mission before rolling straight into the next one. Several combined

operations with B Sqn allowed us the chance to practice more integrated manoeuvre and on a fast-paced (but realistic) timeframe. Manning issues meant that after “EndEx” we bade farewell to half the Sqn who had (been) volunteered to stay out for B and C Squadrons’ Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER 2. A much depleted Sqn returned back to a traditionally wet UK summer, where we bade farewell to Lt HJB Jordan who leaves for RAC(TR) in Bovington. Fortunately there was no time for the Sqn to get bored thanks to G4S’s creative accounting and, before we knew it, we were on Op OLYMPICS, assisting with Security at Olympic venues alongside D Sqn. As always, the Troopers took it in their stride and it provided a good chance to show the public yet again how professional and versatile the Household Cavalry is. A Sqn is not currently due to deploy on Op HERRICK 18 but instead remain in Windsor as Training and Support Sqn; however, we continue to provide essential support to B and C Squadrons during their pre-deployment training.

B Squadron

B

uilding on training foundations laid last year, 2012 has seen B Sqn move through its Hybrid Foundation Training (HFT) as a wheeled reconnaissance squadron to become a multi capbadge sub-unit preparing to deploy as the 1 Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF) on Op HERRICK 18 in April 2013. The year has seen considerable turnover in manpower and excellent training matched against a high individual training burden for Op HERRICK 18. The year began training alongside the Light Role Reconnaissance Commanders’ Course and 16 Air Assault Brigade’s Pathfinder Platoon and allowed the squadron to further build on its dismounted skills. With a Command and Staff Training Exercise in Germany, a new SCM in place and Easter leave complete the Squadron moved to BATUS for the highlight of our HFT year- two Battlegroup level Prairie Thunder exercises.

Capt Clive gives QBOs

B Sqn in BATUS

Rolling out of Camp Crowfoot on their first road run prior to Exercise PRAIRIE THUNDER 1 the Squadron had an immediate taste for unpredictability of Canadian weather with blazing sun turning within the hour to an icy blizzard of sleet and snow from which the R-WIMK (an open top Land Rover) vehicle offers little protection. With preparations complete B Sqn were quickly cut away from the remainder of the Battle Group to conduct their own live-fire training. The first few days saw the squadron shake out on specificto-arm ranges involving mounted and

dismounted serials and a chance to refresh and then hone gunnery skills on HMG, GMG and GPMG; impressing both the BATUS range safety as well as the attached Surveillance Reconnaissance Wing (SRW) staff with their accuracy, particularly Tpr Murphy who never failed to shine behind “Helga” the HMG. Combined arms ranges saw the opportunity for B Sqn to work alongside 4 RIFLES in a deliberate company attack involving dismounted elements of the squadron led by Capt AR Pickthall attacking bunker positions, as well

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 9


B Sqn WMIKs lead the Brigade Advance

CoH Allen delivers orders

as R-WIMIKs providing intimate fire support for the assaulting Riflemen. The Sqn Ldr, Major PJ Williams MC, spearheaded the assault at times, relieving a wounded Tp Ldr of his command before dismounting to assault an enemy bunker alongside the stricken vehicle’s driver Tpr James. Meanwhile across the valley Capt Mackay-Lewis was being educated by a vociferous member of the safety staff (Lt Turner) on GPMG rates of fire.

was able to take some well-earned leave and conduct travel in North America and adventurous training at Trails End Camp, before returning to venture onto the Prairie anew. Although at times the exercise felt oddly familiar, a new Sqn Ldr, a fresh ORBAT and an increasing focus towards Afghanistan provided a continued impetus for training, and a particular highlight was a dismounted village clearance operation that had a remarkably Afghan feel to it.

The TES phase of the exercise began with a perfect B Sqn mission that including heli-inserting a dismounted OP, two river crossings and an in-depth infiltration all completed in one cycle of darkness. Throughout the exercise the majority of movement occurred at night developing driving skills with night-vision goggles and frequent troop level recovery due to bog-ins; when not moving the squadron was occupied with close-target recces and OPs. In the final twenty-four hours of the exercise Sqn Ldrs changed and with the handover of a battle marked map, thermal suit and goggles Major TJ Armitage assumed command from Major Williams.

On returning from summer leave at the end of August, B Sqn began training in earnest as the BRF and rapidly adjusted its manning to incorporate an uplift of riflemen from 4 RIFLES and supporting elements from the Intelligence Corps, RE, RA, RHA, R Signals and RMP; the Squadron was also delighted to welcome Lt Charles Leigh IG as its Intelligence Officer.

With the completion of Exercise PRAIRIE THUNDER 1, the squadron

What began as a hastily brought together collection of cap-badges was slowly gelled together into a cohesive BRF through the shared experience of its specialist training delivered over six weeks by OPTAG’s SRW which included an old B Sqn hand WO2 Taylor amongst their staff. The SRW training was a demanding and

The BRF on ranges in Kirkudbright

10 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

intensive course that taught mission specific skills and allowed the mettle of the BRF mounted and dismounted skills to be tested across UK training estates from Kirkudbright to Devon. With the SRW course complete the BRF continued to ride the rollercoaster that is pre-deployment training encompassing ranges in Lydd and Castlemartin, low-level life-saving drills in Thetford and a heavy burden of individual training courses. The result was that by Christmas all members of the BRF welcomed a well-deserved rest with their families, but with one eye firmly on the challenges of a demanding tour to come. The Squadron bids farewell to WO2 Marsh who returns to the world of adventure training as a civilian and is succeeded by as SCM by WO2 McWhirter and SCpl Parker now with C Sqn and succeeded as SQMC by SCpl Woollaston. Also departing from the Squadron for new challenges are Capts Goodhew, Mackay-Lewis and Richardson. The Sqn welcomes Capt CTD Talbot as Second-in-Command and Capt JA Mawson, Capt J Clive and Lt WE Boyd-Thomas as troop leaders.

The BRF in the ‘Green Zone’ of Thetford


C Squadron

C

Squadron has had another excellent year with the Sqn’s planned deployment to Afghanistan in early 2013 a constant and clear target throughout. The first half of 2012 has been a period of intense Hybrid Foundation Training (HFT), culminating with a gruelling exercise in BATUS (Canada); whilst the second half of the year has seen a further increase in tempo with Mission Specific Training (MST) in order to be fully prepared for our deployment on Op HERRICK 18. Back in January, after an always well deserved and thoroughly enjoyable Christmas leave, the Sqn hit the new year running with large amounts of driver training, mostly concentrating on gaining HGV licenses to then allow the further driving qualifications required to use the exotic fleet of (UOR) vehicles deployed in Afghanistan. The Sqn deployed to Salisbury Plain for Ex IRON MONGREL in February as its last chance to practice the skills and drills that would be tested in Canada; it was a huge success as we comfortably achieved all the training requirements for Collective Training (CT) levels 1 and 2. Despite waking up to 6 inches of snow and nearly impassable tracks on the last morning, morale remained as high as ever and it became a duty to sharpen our snow ball gunnery skills, a memorable moment for LCpl Banda whose first ever experience of snow was a well packed white projectile impacting on his face! The exercise also marked the end of WO2 Ireland’s successful tenure as our SCM; he moved to the post of RQMC(T) in Windsor. With one sun setting over the world of C Sqn, another arose and we welcomed WO2 Parker to the illustrious seat, joining us on promotion from B Sqn. With the snows melted and Easter arriving, the Sqn really started to gain momentum with a trip down to the Lulworth ranges in order to get the last few crews through their Annual Crew Tests on the BGTI Scimitar and

The great outdoors - BATUS

C Sqn in BATUS Suffield, Canada

to qualify as many as possible on the various heavy weapons available to the modern recce soldier. Not being ones for hanging around, we traded Dorset for northern Germany, bouncing straight out to join the regiment in Sennelager for CATT/CAST. We used this opportunity to finalise the ORBAT for BATUS and once again the Sqn excelled; it was well rewarded by being able to let its (reassuringly short) hair down and treating the local town of Paderborn to a Sqn visit.

a week out of Windsor to achieve the qualifications, on his estate in Herefordshire; this was a great chance for the Sqn to bond and all 9 of the MATTs were completed, with one of the many triumphs being an orientation test over the Malvern Hills culminating with the Military Swim Test in the local town.

Tpr Mills sleeping on the job

The dawning discovery that Land Rovers are not amphibious

After another enjoyable leave period, the Sqn was hardly back a day before half of it was sent to reinforce both A and B Sqns for Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER (PT) 1 in Canada and all involved found the experience incredibly useful and formed a core of experience which was to serve the Sqn well when it was its turn on Ex PT2. Whilst all this was going on over the Atlantic, the remainder of the Sqn was able to get ahead of the Pre Deployment Training (PDT) curve with more UOR driver training and a ‘MATTs week’ (basic mandatory individual all arms skills). The Sqn Ldr hosted Ex IRON MALVERN,

Early June signalled the rest of the Sqn’s deployment to Canada; the trip to BATUS bringing back a lot of fond memories for many of the old guard but for the majority it was most definitely a trip into the unknown and as such was a slightly daunting endeavour. Having rescued our noble reinforcements from the other Sqns, C was once again whole and at critical mass, ready to go anywhere and do anything, which in our case was out into the barren prairie. Ex PT2 was a gruelling test for any soldier; the combination of a demanding live fire package, an even more demanding TES phase and the sheer length of the exercise, made the whole experience of BATUS a great learning experience and enduring to it all was the indomitable spirit of C Sqn. The end of the exercise was firstly marked by a huge sigh of relief and secondly a massive sense of achievement as the Sqn performed well above the expected standard. It was by now late July and all this had created a longing for summer leave and a return to what was fast becoming

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 11


a summer not to miss in Blighty. It was also time to say goodbye to Major David Brooks who, having lead the Sqn to this summit, headed off for a 6 month tour in the Middle East to be immediately followed by another in Kabul. He handed the reins to Maj James (Sinjin) de St John-Pryce, fresh from the staff of the Permanent Joint Headquarters and delighted to lead the Sqn into which he was originally posted.

An early human discovering the use of tools

Summer leave came and went quickly, but thankfully was not eroded by the Op OLYMPICS duty trawls; the new school year starting at full pace with an in-depth study week into Afghanistan for the commanders and specialist training for everyone else; this marked the beginning of MST and set the tone for the run up all the way to deployment. In our new Op HERRICK ORBAT (with 3 mixed Scimitar 2 and Jackal Gun Tps and a large all Jackal Support Tp), we set about absorbing the vast quality of knowledge required to survive and succeed in such a complex theatre of war, a task to which everyone set their minds with full vigour. The ensuing weeks were a

kaleidoscope of ranges, training courses and general preparations, punctuated by the All Ranks Brief and the Tactical Commander’s course. During the blur that was September, we waved off a few of our number to promotions in and out of the Army but also welcomed many into the C Sqn family, coming from the other Sqns, HCMR and other Arms, they all gelled immediately and swelled our ranks to well beyond full manning, a rare treat amidst this era of cuts!

achieving more than was ever expected! Back in Windsor for a few days, the Sqn was able to briefly take stock before deploying back out to CMR for the training culmination marked by Ex PASHTUN TEMPEST, the Combined Arms Live Firing Exercise (CALFEX). An excellent training opportunity which refined and tested our ability to conduct operations in a complex environment whilst firing live ammunition; despite this being the first time that the Tps had full complements of both Scimitar 2 and Jackals, the performance was first class. The greatest challenge was the weather which raised its game to a legendary downpour ‘not seen in decades’ (a quote from the locals!) and although C Sqn was drenched, it remained undeterred from achieving its mission. The return to Windsor felt even more special as HM The Queen took time from her busy schedule to mark the occasion with us.

Like the Sqn 2IC’s favourite show, the Sqn was now bigger and better than ever, as October signalled the start of 2 months of back to back training exercises to build us up, the rump of the collective MST. The interesting but sterile environment of SHQ’s CAST in Warminster contrasted sharply with the chaotic Castlemartin weather where the Sqn was concurrently honing its 30mm gunnery skills with the newly received Scimitar 2. This new version of Despite some remaining unknowns our trusty old friend the Scimitar is an with regards to the Sqn’s deployment upgraded Spartan hull with a Scimitar to Op HERRICK 18, no doubt cleared turret on top and, despite the increase in up by the time you read this, the Sqn height, it provides us with a much safer remains single-mindedly focussed on vehicle to use in Afghanistan; it was an achieving the highest possible standard instant hit amongst the Sqn. With only for deploying to Afghanistan and if a few days back home, we were back politics should judge differently, we on the road to Ex PASHTUN HAWK, will remain at the summit of capability a fantastic set of dismounted ranges on ready to go anywhere and bring success the south coast which took the Sqn’s to any task; the true C Sqn ethos. application of fire, accuracy and contact drills to a whole new level. Straight from the pan into the fire of Ex PASHTUN PANTHER, the CFX, held in Thetford, which although a ‘confirmatory’ exercise was held so early in the training progression that it was more learning than confirmation; that say, the Sqn got stuck in so thoroughly, that our learning curve and thus performance went from novice to expert in record time, astounding both the HM The Queen listening to LCpl Wright’s war stories OPTAG staff and RHQ and

D Squadron

2

012 has proved to be a somewhat unusual year for all the members of D Sqn. With no further deployments to Afghanistan on the horizon for 16 AA Bde, this year has allowed the Sqn to consolidate and fully prepare for their contingency role within the Airborne Task Force (ABTF), moreover the Air Manoeuvre Battle Group (AMBG) which has been led by 5 SCOTS for the duration of the year. The new role to which the Sqn has found itself adapting has forced a change of mindset amongst all ranks. The uncertain environment we find

12 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

D Sqn in Scotland


ourselves potentially operating in and the reduced notice to move time to deploy anywhere in the world, has focussed the minds of the Sqn and ensured that we are in a position to feel comfortable and ready to deploy to any chosen theatre designated by the ABTF.

The Airborne fraternity of D Sqn in various states of excitement just before a jump

The Sqn has continued where it left off last year with their collective training and with exercises ranging from the west coast of Scotland to Norfolk via Wales. Ex JOINT WARRIOR saw the deployment of 2 Tp by C130 TALOing (Tactical Air Landing Operation) onto West Freugh airfield with members of the Parachute Regiment in order to secure a platform for the AMBG to launch subsequent operations. Immediately after returning from this, the Sqn began preparing for forthcoming exercises, most notably Ex WESSEX THUNDER on Salisbury Plain, again, with members of the Parachute Regiment and, this time, the Omani Army. This proved to be an invaluable experience to all as familiarity was gained with multi-national joint training and offered an insight into the characteristics of the contemporary operating environment, an environment that D Sqn will potentially find themselves operating in albeit it as a somewhat expeditionary force and with multiple collation partners. As summer approached and the Diamond Jubilee celebrations got into full

CoH Salmon going for gold

swing the tempo of life, to a degree, eased for a period allowing many members of the Sqn to go adventurous training on the Household Division yacht Gladeye and take some well-deserved leave. This however was only to be short lived as the Olympics loomed ever closer; 2Lt Churcher along with his troop deployed on Op OLYMPICS to the Olympic Park in order to provide security for the media centre for the duration of the Olympics and ParaOlympics. This proved to be a fantastic opportunity and a chance to be part of a once in a life time spectacle and a great sporting achievement, with many of the boys managing to take in a whole host of events throughout their three month deployment.

eted and the most beautiful team of the Olympics, the Dutch women’s hockey team.

As the remainder of the Sqn was winding down for the summer holidays, the G4S security short-falls came to the fore and the rest of the Sqn were stood up for immediate deployment to Op OLYMPICS. After much uncertainty the Sqn was deployed; initially to provide the outer cordon security for Lord’s Cricket Ground before being switched to a reserve force of one hundred men based out of Tobacco Docks, in east London. Living conditions were poor, with better standards having been experienced in occupied Afghan compounds. All this proved to be a challenging experience for the Sqn as much uncertainty remained about the potential duration of the task which gradually began to clash with the school summer break and planned holidays; luckily, D Sqn was only deployed for 3 weeks and throughout its time on task the Sqn remained motivated and enthusiastic, a commendable display of professional spirit. Whilst the Sqn officers were ‘ambushed’ by the Mayor of London (and cohort) and filmed on national news, several members of the Sqn took full advantage of their canny ability to ‘blag’ their way into several Olympic venues but the highlight for many of boys was the opportunity to watch the highly cov-

The highlights of the Sqn social calendar were: first, a trip to a German beer house in central London were we wished farewell to Maj Lewis as he left the chair of Officer Commanding, which proved to be a great deal of fun for all involved. Secondly, whilst on firing camp in Wales, the Sqn enjoyed a night out in the buzzing metropolis of Haverfordwest, nicknamed by many members of the Sqn as “Haver Bag West!!”; the night will remain in the memories of all for a while yet.

In recent weeks the Sqn went to Castlemartin to conduct their annual firing camp in order to remain current on a variety of platforms from Scimitar to Spartan and the recently acquired RWMIK; the Sqn managed to achieve a very high average pass mark across the board, which is a credit to everyone involved. The Sqn also took the opportunity to brush up and enhance their infantry skills on a week of dismounted ranges; which proved to be highly successful despite the customary Welsh horizontal rain which never deterred its fighting spirit.

Finally we must say goodbye to many members of D Sqn, who have either been promoted or posted out of the Sqn, too many to mention here; this has been balanced by having welcomed many new faces into the D Sqn family. Of note, in addition to waving off the departing Sqn Ldr after two years as D Sqn Ldr we welcomed Maj R J Ongaro SCOTS DG, to take up the post. CoH Townsend leaves us, the Regiment and the Army, after a highly successful and illustrious career which has seen operational service from the Balkans to Afghanistan, via Iraq, and we all wish him well in the future as, without doubt, paths will once again cross in the sun bleached compounds of the Middle East.

The Beach Boys in Castlemartin

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 13


Headquarters Squadron by Major JP Core

The Regiment on the Prairie

W

hen I was informed it was time for my notes for the journal again, I firstly could not believe that a year has passed. Once again before I started to write this article, I looked back through the diary to familiarise myself with what the squadron had completed this year. It is amazing how much we have actually been involved in, but more importantly how much we have been away from our families and how much more we have yet to do. I have decided just to give you the broad brush of what the Squadron has been doing this year and let the departments give you the highs and lows of what happened. This year has been divided into three separate training periods; each one has been a stepping stone to improve the Squadrons skills and drills to ensure that we will be ready for deployment next year for Op HERRICK 18. January and February commenced with Command Troop demonstrating many different variations of gold, silver and bronze Regimental HQ configuration; either in HQ hangars, by the training wing car park or deployed on Bramley Training Area. This setup used to be four sultans complete with attached

penthouses, however more recently the setup consists of six sultans with penthouses, two 12x12 tents, one 9x9 tent and an AS90 cam net to cover it all, demonstrating the vast increase in complexity. This was closely followed by the QM’s and QM(T)’s Department deploying to Lulworth Ranges to support the sabre squadrons Annual Firing, and by the end of February and the Squadron was back on Salisbury Plain to carry out CT1 training again. The deployment to Germany to carry out CAST & CATT, meant it was “full steam ahead” for all of the departments in March and April and as always HQ Squadron were the first to arrive and the last to leave. Sgt Passmore and the Catering Department need a special mention as the food they provided was excellent throughout the duration of the exercise. It must also be noted that it wasn’t all hard work and at times the German beer did flow; I will leave it to the departments to inform the reader how well the weekend off went. The completion of CAST & CATT brought the first training period to an end, but more importantly, it also meant that the Squadron went on two weeks well deserved Easter leave.

The Adjt planning the next phase of the operation

From early May all departments deployed to BATUS to carry out Ex PRAIRE THUNDER (PT) 1 and 2, and I can confirm that there is still no better challenge than BATUS. It was quickly evident across the cohort of all the departments the level of skill that was being demonstrated and the high level of support that was enabling the sabre squadrons to perform so well. Throughout PT 1 and

The Regtl 2IC on radio stag

2 the BG experimented with a number of variations to the normal resupply chain and much to their credit, the departments were always ready to adjust, finesse or completely change the way they did their daily business, in order to ensure mission success. Lastly, before we departed BATUS for a well-deserved summer leave, the Commanding Officer, 2I/C, Adjt, RCM and myself went to pay our respects to CoH Parkinson (Senior) who died in BATUS when he was range safety staff on the 3rd June 1980. On our return from leave we immediately started our Pre-Deployment

The Commanding Officer, the Regtl 2IC, the Adjt and the RCM paying respects to CoH JJ Parkinson who died in BATUS on the 3rd June 1980

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 15


Training for Op HERRICK 18, and the new squadron role of commanding the Brigade Troops Echelon began. This is a multifaceted role of supporting the ISTAR Group, B and C Squadrons, as well as a further six sub-units. This will see us through to March 2013 and we will start deploying from mid April 2013. The past 12 months have seen the squad-

ron 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 squadron not to say goodbye to a generation of officers heading towards greener pastures: Capt NS Brooks; Capt CC Church; Capt CEB Dale; Capt SD McMullen; Capt CJN Trinick and Capt B Campbell who has started life as a civilian

by walking the entire length of the Iron Curtain. We must also say farewell to: WO2 SCM Hockings; WO2 MTWO Adams and SCpl Hoggarth. I would like to thank them for all their hard work and loyal service and wish them good luck with their future careers.

Warrant Officers’ and Non Commissioned Officers’ Mess by WO1 (RCM) S Fry MC

A

s ever, this has been a year with many highlights for the WOs’ and NCOs’ Mess. Most significantly was Brickhanging at the end of last year; it has been several years since all five Squadrons have been in Barracks at the same time. The Mess was filled to capacity with not only the serving Mess members, but also a large number of ex-serving affiliates, including Chelsea Pensioner Bob Hoggarth late RHG/D. There has for many years been a role of honour for the oldest ex RCM that is invited to hang the brick, but there has never been any recorded information about the Mess member that takes the brick down at the end of the function; this has now changed and the Brick Layers role of honour has been born. Congratulations and much kudos can be bestowed upon LCoH G Alan for being the most senior Mess member to remove the brick and escort it to the Guardroom at 1030 am the following day. 2012 started with the much anticipated State of the Nation Dinner in January. The Commanding Officer embraced the challenges of the Badgers Head for a second time and conveyed a poignant message covering: his take on how the Army will change in the foreseeable future; how we should hold our nerve and remain focussed; and how the Regimental programme was filling up for the year ahead as we journey towards Helmand Province once more in 2013. In March we bid farewell to WO1

(RCM) Danny Hitchings and wished him luck on his future as a LE captain. The new face on the block was that of WO1 (RCM) ‘Sizzler’ Fry MC now in the hot seat for the busy times ahead. In June the Mess organised and hosted the Household Division and other invited guests at Epsom for Oaks Day and Derby Day 2012. WO2 (SCM) Eulert and D Sqn organised the event and although the majority of HCR Mess members were deployed to BATUS on Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER the event was a great success with many HCR soldiers attending from ERE posts and over 1200 guests on the Saturday. Although the weather was grey early in the day by lunchtime the sun was beaming down ensuring everyone present had their fill of their chosen tipple, and a good day was had by all. The Warrant Officers’ and Non Commissioned Officers’ Mess has seen some of its more senior members make the transition to civilian life and although not all have been dined out as yet, rest assured, plans are afoot to find time in the busy training calendar. Of note are: WO2 (SCM) C Hocking; WO2 (MTWO) P Adams; SCpl G Thomas; SCpl J Hoggarth. The Regimental diary gathered pace in the spring with the majority of the Mess members deployed to Germany for CAST and CATT. For some of the old and bold Life Guards this brought

The Brick Layers 2011: LCpl McWhirter, LCpl Moore, LCoH Perryman, LCoH Cawley, LCoH Allen, LCpl White-Doyle, LCpl Tipling

16 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

SCpl Dove and SCpl Swinburne in the Household Division Enclosure at Epsom

back the memories of good times in Sennelager and of course plenty of German beer was consumed in the NATO mess. Fresh from Germany, a 3 month deployment to Canada over the summer was soon upon us, which would then be followed by Mission Specific Training (MST) for at least two of the Squadrons until the end of the year. As the days started to become longer the Mess had a plethora of private functions from christenings to birthday parties. One of the most significant events was the Friends of the Household Cavalry Museum luncheon, formally held to thank all those that have and continue to support the Museum without which it could not survive. The Archive (which is located within Barracks) is a great supporter of the Regiment and, driven with passion by Mr John Lloyd and his team of volunteers, it provides an invaluable service for preserving Regimental history and enabling the education of younger members of the Regiment (both Officers and Soldiers alike). The Museum volunteers are drawn from all different facets of the local community and provide an essential service. The

Mr John Lloyd (formerly LG) addresses the Friends of the HCav Museum


luncheon was hugely successful and it is now hoped it will continue annually. During September WO2 Forsdick organised a fantastic Fathers and Sons dinner night; this had a good turnout of around 80 with the full mess silver present to try and impress our honoured guests. The Drums of the 3rd Bn Royal Welsh was asked to play at the event, and they did an outstanding job entering to the tune of The Great Escape they played a number of well know songs ending with night sticks, with their drummers playing in the dark with flourescent sticks; this was a triumphant success and wowed the Mess with their talent. At the request of the RCM the drummers stayed on after the dinner to give us all private lessons; this obviously cost a lot in beer money but was well worth it. Our very own LCpl Martin Semple, a comedian on the circuit, also did a turn taking full licence to heckle any Warrant Officer or Senior willing to interrupt him. Overall, a very good evening was had by all attending Mess members. The senior Mess Members are: WO1 (RCM) S Fry MC LG, WO1 (ASM)

WO2 (SCM) Newell, WO2 Forsdick, WO1 (RCM) Fry MC, WO1 Flynn CGC MC, WO2 (SCM) Eulert with the Drums Platoon of the 3rd Bn Royal Welsh

N Wright REME, WO1 (BM) I Colin RHG/D, WO2 (RQMC) D Robson RHG/D, WO2 (RQMC (T)) P Ireland RHG/D, WO2 (AQMS) S Oldrid REME, WO2 (RAOWO) L Johnson AGC (SPS), WO2 (SCM) J Moses RHG/D, WO2 (SCM) S McWhirter RHG/D, WO2

(SCM) S Parker RHG/D, WO2 (SCM) C Eulert RHG/D, WO2 (SCM) D Daley RHG/D, WO2 (RSWO) P Carrington LG, WO2 (MTWO) T Aston, RHG/D, WO2 (TWWO) J Forsdick LG, WO2 (BCM) S Marsh RHG/D.

Quartermaster’s Department by Capt J Pass

2

012 has been another quiet year for the Quartermasters Department. It has provided Real Life Support to the HCR Brigade Study Day, where the Master Cook, SSgt Mark Luff, was in the hot seat ensuring he could feed over 500 people in 45mins! A challenge he told everyone was a doddle and through excellent delivery by his team of Chefs the meals were on cue and delicious. This was shortly followed by the QM and CoH Johnson hitting the autobahn and deploying to Sennelager, Germany, in support of the CAST/CATT exercise.

Bratties and beer were in high demand as it had been 20 years since the QM was last in Sennelager and no surprises, it hasn’t changed.

Around this time we also said farewell to LCpl Backhouse, who left the dept to become the POL Storeman in MT. Graham had been a stalwart in the dept and it was a shame to see him go. LCpl Rose also left to go back to the Sqn’s and complete his crew commanders course, Rosey had been with the troop for over a year and amongst other things, lost a lot of weight and got himself fit. One new addition to the Dept was LCpl Elder (QDG) who has joined the troop on detachment from his regiment; he slotted in very nicely and took over the PRI Shop in April as the regiment was going to BATUS; he has had a very The refurbished ‘Front of House’ productive

period, transforming the ‘new look’ PRI. April saw the RQMC Robson, LCpl Quinn and LCpl Woodward all deploy to BATUS for 3 months facilitating Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER 1 & 2. Over this period SCpl Goater ensured the department was in good hands and prepared for the Olympic rush; Op Olympic saw over 120 extra personnel arrive into the recently re-furbished Block 4. During their security cycles at Dorney rowing lake they were efficiently looked after by LCoH Solis, LCoH Kemp and LCpl Elder over the summer holiday period. Various exercises over the remaining part of the year saw the QMs Dept deploy in support of: the All Ranks Briefings, Dismounted Close Combat firing in Kirkcudbright, Castlemartin for annual firing, Lydd & Hythe range package, Thetford for the CFX and further support to the CALFEX’s and FTX exercises. Works projects have been ticking over despite the MOD’s severe lack of money. Improvements have been made to the Guardroom, Medical Centre, B Veh Servicing Bay, the Stables, Dental Centre, Blocks 3 & 4 and a series of security enhancements have been made all around the site with additional CCTV. Most significantly the new Operational Loading Capability (new parade

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 17


Works continued apace to get the new parade square and parking areas sorted, come rain or snow

QM’s Department supporting Slough Jets HCOCF fund raiser. L-R: Tpr Bremner, Tpr Edwards, LCoH Kemp, LCpl Scheepers, LCoH Solis, Tpr Blower, SCpl Goater, CoH Johnson, Capt Pass

square) work is well under way, this will be an approx 3000 sq ft block paved space that will give the regiment a parade square for the first time in over 7

years. The lower car park area is also due to be re-graded and resurfaced with correct drainage, lighting and water provision to facilitate HCMR when they come to Windsor in the future for any State Visits.

the Civil Service Staff, Site contractors (Sodexo and PRiDE), external sub contractors and the DIO staff who have once again given their support and assistance throughout the year; this is invaluable to Combermere and Regiment’s success.

Finally the Regiment’s thanks go to all

Quartermaster (Equipment) Department

by Major PJ McKechnie

I

nitially it appeared that 2012 would be a quiet year. However after the first diary check it was clear this would not be the case. The first quarter saw the vehicle fleet fluctuate again with the arrival of RWMIK+, a brief jaunt onto SPTA and three weeks in Germany on CAST/CATT which included returning the armoured vehs used by 1 Mech Bde back to the Training Fleet Support Unit in Monchengladbach. After Easter leave the majority of the department deployed to BATUS for over three months to support the FR BG on Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER (PT) 1 and 2. It became clear immediately that BATUS was not prepared for a fourth battle group and the necessary equipment was not readily available. To facilitate this shortfall and reduced manning, A1 and A2 Echelons were combined under the control of the QM(T). Although this could have produced many problems the combined structure helped by producing flexibility and the ability to task all SQMCs. All accounts were manually run and this provided a stern task for LCoH Ramsden on the USA truck and Tpr Forrest running the expense account; during PT 1 and 2 they demanded almost 2000 items in two four week periods! CoH Stay had the delights of Tpr Nawari’s driving skills and his ability to keep his truck clean; he was also rather surprised to find why

18 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

a jerry can of water he tasted during the night seemed to be off. On closer investigation, in the light of day, a mouse had committed suicide and become stuck in the neck of the jerry can. LCoH Wharton was heard to announce that this was “outrageous” before returning to his Bowman account.

spent his summer detached to the Crew Training School in Bovington.

Saying goodbye to C Sqn’s SCIMITAR 2s

The secret ingredient to the QM(T)’s water supply - a suicidal mouse

In Windsor WO2 RQMC(T) Ireland controlled the regiment as the senior Warrant Officer in barracks, this included the Diamond Jubilee parade in Windsor; whilst CoH Bond ran all USA accounts by himself and LCoH Evans continued to restructure the regiment’s equipment table in line with the recent rewrite. This in itself is no small task considering the arrival of OTEP kit for Op HERRICK 18 and new equipment for Dismounted Close Combat and FIST. LCpl Skingley

After summer leave the department prepared itself and the regiment for OP HERRICK 18 MST; including the receipt and management of all equipment to allow training on specific theatre standard vehicles and all extra sights and personal weapons. The department said goodbye to Maj Paul McKechnie to ATDU Bovington as SO2(W) Comms and Veh Systems, WO1 Paul Stainsby to Bovington as RQMC(T), SCpl Hall to HCMR as Offr’s Mess Manager and LCpl Thoman to the SQMS department in Bovington. The department welcomed Capt Ade Gardner from UWO, WO2 Pete Ireland from C Sqn SCM, CoH Marc Stay from HCMR and LCpl Skingley from the post bunk.


Light Aid Detachment by Captain J Anthistle REME

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he past 10 months of 2012 have been busy as always for the Household Cavalry Light Aid Detachment (LAD), providing vital equipment support to the Regiment through the extremely high tempo of Exercises and pre-tour training. The LAD started out the year with low level exercises on Salisbury Plain and ranges across the UK, whilst a few members of the LAD deployed on winter repair to BATUS, Canada.

vehicles were turned around once again ready to hand over to 9/12 Lancers for PT 3. After returning from Canada the LAD settled into a well earned summer leave to come back fresh for Op HERRICK pre-deployment training. And so it continues…..

A lucky escape and another recovery tasking for the boys

Field repairs on Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER

In March the LAD accompanied the Regiment to Sennelarger, Germany, to complete two weeks of CATT and CAST training. before deploying to BATUS in May for Ex PRAIRIE TUNDER (PT) 1 and 2. Before long, we were on the flight to Canada for an epic three months of exercise on the prairie. As soon as we landed work commenced on the herculean task of getting the vehicles up to the standard required for the arduous months ahead with A, B and HQ Sqns on Ex PT 1. The weather was dismal with constant rain resulting in the recovery assets pulling vehicles out of sticky situations, hourly. Vehicle mechanics were busy night and day doing whatever it took to get the vehicles back on the road, technicians fixing any electrical faults thrown their way with the armourers vital to the first two weeks

of ranges keeping the weapon systems firing. After the range period we went straight into the TES phase where we were now fighting 1 LANCS COEFOR (enemy force). The work load increased significantly with the added factor of working tactically, moving at night in low if not zero light and trying to keep fit equipment in the hands of the user, often well into the enemy’s territory; a new challenge to many of the junior tradesman but one very much relished. After a relentless four weeks of PT 1 with A Sqn, all returned to the Forward Mounting Area where we started immediately preparing the vehicles for roll back to hand to C Sqn who were flying in that week. The hard two weeks of graft to complete the vehicle turn around was broken up with a much deserved long weekend of R & R in the middle. Never ones to miss an opportunity, some of the intrepid members of the LAD ventured to Calgary and sample its nightlife, while a few more were mad enough to venture to Las Vegas. All too quickly we were once again deploying out for PT 2 but at least the weather had greatly improved and with that, the detachment’s morale. After another successful four weeks out on the prairie the

If CVR(T) can make it, doesn’t mean you can!

Cpl Hall practising early for Movember

D Sqn fitter section waved goodbye to the regiment deploying to Canada and formed the Rear Ops Group LAD, balancing their Airborne Task Force (ABTF) commitments with the back loading of an increasing number of vehicles. On top of this they also took receipt of eight shiny new and upgraded CVR(T) in time for numerous 16 Brigade training exercises, practising their rapid deployment using Hercules C130J aircraft. Op OLYMPICS also provided an opportunity to ensure D Sqn Fitters were never found wanting for work, they deployed to provide the quick reaction force for an area of the games. Luckily they were never needed but it allowed members of the fitter section to be a part of the Games with free VIP seats to the Riverside arena. In all, a busy and rewarding year, full of excitement and uncertainty as to when or if the next ABTF tasking may come.

Route selection at Endex is key!

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 19


Training Wing by Captain D Owens

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hat a year for the Training Wing it has been. After a thorough handover from Capt Andy ‘Gunnery God’ Galvin, I took over the reins and inherited SCpl Dove the RGWO as well as LCoH Fletcher, the licensing NCO. BATUS was on the horizon and while some people were enjoying the delights of the ‘Canny Lad’, the wing was steadily putting the Regiment through: Individual Mission Specific Training (IMST), pre course training, both JCC modules, driver training, C theory and MATTs just to name a few; all this ably assisted by LCpl Kwayke (SPS) and then LSgt Noel (SPS). We were joined after BATUS by WO2 Forsdick and SCpl Jaworski; WO2 Forsdick had worked in the wing previously so his experience was a great help, but by the time you read this he will be in ‘Civvy Strasse’. SCpl Jaworski has taken over the small arms side of the wing, providing instruction on various weapons for B and C Sqns as well as running dismounted ranges at Castlemartin (CMR), during their gunnery camp. Simultaneously, the RGWO conducted a B3 gunnery course, which culminated with firing at CMR; there was some good gunnery and all 17 passed first time. While this has been going on LCoH Fletcher as been working tirelessly to get soldiers’ driving licences, theory tests, practical tests, as well as getting himself qualified in HAZMAT and GS instruction; but he has yet to get me on my motorbike course! C Sqn converted to Scimitar 2 and completed their ACTs, while D Sqn completed ACT on the old Scimitar, all this was done in the fantastic(-ally wet) October

D Sqn TLFFT at Castlemartin

weather at Castlemartin. Ex PASHTUN HAWK, an extensive range package at Hythe and Lydd, seen as the culmination of Dismounted Close Combat, was smoothly run by the team and took the Sqns to an even higher level of skills ahead of their operational deployment. The Wing then seamlessly moved to STANTA for Ex PASHTUN PANTHER, the CFX, which saw B and C Sqns fully test their TTP and receive enhanced skills training under the watchful eye of the TAC instructors at OPTAG. With Op HERRICK 18 looming, the Regiment is in good form, well trained and ready to deal with any eventuality they’ll encounter. For the members of the Training Wing that are not sadly deploying, we will carry on jogging and keep the essential training cycle back home going. So for any disappointed individuals not deploying to Afghanistan, if

SCpl Jaworski and Capt Owens ready for the next C Sqn fire team

there are any courses that you wish to attend, then pop down and we’ll be happy to help, unless it’s the underwater knife fighting course because it’s always over subscribed ...

The Band of The Blues and Royals by Captain J Griffiths, Director of Music

A

s has become something of a tradition in the band, we use the quiet period at the beginning of the year to do some adventure training, and so it was that in late January we prepared for a bracing week of mountaineering in the Snowdonia National Park, basing ourselves at the Joint Service Mountaineering Centre, Capel Curig. We are fortunate to have fully-qualified Mountain Leaders within the band (CoH Rowe and LCoH Roberts) and with their experience and the excellent facilities and equipment provided by Capel Curig, a really great time was had by all. We were all very excited when we were asked to play at the 2012 FA Cup Final, and when it finally came, our performance on the hallowed Wembley

The band perform at the FA Cup Final

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 21


turf went very smoothly and provided us with a memorable and enjoyable day whilst maintaining national public awareness of the excellent musical standards of British Army bands. We also formed an excellent working relationship with soprano soloist Mary-Jess Leaverland, who sang the National Anthem at Wembley, and subsequently performed with the band at charity fund-raising concerts later in the year. By late May we were ‘riding fit’ in preparation for the usual run-up to the Queen’s Birthday Parade and also the Diamond Jubilee Procession. Standards of turnout and mounted musicianship were to be of the highest order (even higher than usual) and needless to say, we were not found wanting on either front. Being on horseback outside Westminster Abbey as part of a mounted band and then leading the Diamond Jubilee Procession along Whitehall and down The Mall in front of thousands of jubilant spectators, in the knowledge that the event was being broadcast worldwide, left us all with memories that we will treasure for the rest of our lives. We should not forget to mention that The Band of the Blues and Royals did not only contribute a mounted band to the Diamond Jubilee Procession - our State Trumpeters played at St Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Hall, and Trumpet Major Bishop rode next to the Royal carriage as Colonel’s Trumpeter all on the same day. It goes without saying that our participation in the Diamond Jubilee celebrations did not detract from our usual “summer mounted season”, and we were very soon mounting up again for the Queen’s Birthday Parade. Yet again, we found ourselves leading the parade down The Mall to Buckingham Palace, and it has to be said that, being Diamond Jubilee year, the atmosphere was even more special than usual, given the public’s overwhelming enthusiasm for this unique event in our nation’s calendar.

This year it would be fair to say we added some extra equine sparkle to the Household Division Beating Retreat thanks to Captain Griffiths approaching the team behind the stage production of “Warhorse” with the idea of the mounted band playing some music from the show. That initial idea blossomed into a full-blown musical extravaganza in which the massed bands of the Household Division accompanied folk singing legend John Tams (who co-wrote and performed the music from the stage show) along with the incredibly realistic life-size horse puppet “Joey” from the show. We were delighted to be invited to play at a very well-attended opening ceremony at the rowing Olympic village at Royal Holloway College campus, Egham, held on the same night as the main Olympic opening ceremony in London. We may not have been able to match the spectacle of Danny Boyle’s extravaganza, but our musical contributions were nonetheless much appreciated by our international audience. The band’s involvement in the Olympics continued at Horse Guards Parade, where we entertained the general public whilst they queued to see the Beach Volleyball, and we also spent a few enjoyable days in Woolwich at the Paralympics, where we delivered similar musical support at the archery and shooting events. Despite the busy schedule presented by the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, the Olympics and Paralympics, and our regular public ceremonial duties, we were still able to fit in some traditional concerts both at home and abroad. Most notable were a live national radio broadcast with the Black Dyke Band and the Pasadena Roof Orchestra at the Culture and Convention Centre on the banks of Lake Lucerne in Switzerland and a Diamond Jubilee concert in the Waterloo Chamber, Windsor Castle (where we were joined again by soprano soloist Mary-Jess Leaverland). Whilst we’re on the subject of stage performances, we

Jubilee concert in the Wellington Chamber, Windsor Castle

22 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

ought to mention that we spent a thoroughly enjoyable day at ITV’s London Studios filming for the Alan Titchmarsh Show to promote the forthcoming British Military Tattoo at Earls Court in December, where we will be performing as a mounted band. Members of the band have also made valuable contributions to various Army-wide musical ensembles. Our solo flautist, LCpl Crofts continues to play violin with the Corps of Army Music Sinfonietta, and LCoH Garner and LCpl Gibson play baritone saxophone and tenor trombone, respectively, with both the Army Big Band and Household Division Big Band. 2012 has been a year of significant sporting achievement in the Band of The Blues and Royals, and we estimate that a total of 2500 miles has been run so far by various Band members both in training and competition. SCpl Kent travelled to Austria and successfully completed an Iron Man Triathlon - a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bicycle ride and 26.2-mile marathon without a break in less than 15 hours. LCpl Miller, an All-Arms Physical Training Instructor within the band has qualified for the elite start of the London Marathon. Not satisfied with winning the 2012 Windsor half-marathon, and having completed a “100 miles in 24 hours” challenge he is now preparing to compete in ultra-marathon events. Musn Gray has recently completed two half-marathons and by all accounts has more planned for the near future. During the autumn leave period, SCpl Kent and Musn Ballantine took part in Exercise ATLANTIS WARRIOR – the details of which are given elsewhere in this journal. Needless to say we are very proud of their contribution to this fabulous venture. Continuing the theme of rather extreme sporting activities, on 15 November 2012, the Director of Music, Captain Griffiths, cycled 400km from

The band play on the approach to Solothurn Cathedral


alongside US military personnel.

SCpl Kent and Musn Ballantine smiling before the epic swim for the HCOCF at Shepperton Lake - Ex ATLANTIS WARRIOR

Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) to the ancient temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia in aid of the British Red Cross. The opportunity to serve as an individual augmentee in Afghanistan was taken up by CoH Screen earlier this year, and we were delighted to welcome him safely back home in September after his 6-month tour of duty. Having previously served as a Staff Instructor at ATR Winchester, he was initially sent to Afghanistan on Op HERRICK 16 as a personal driver, but soon took over as Ops Bravo 2IC to the Kabul Infantry Training Advisory Team, frequently working

We were pleased to welcome two new members to the Band after the last round of assignments – LCpl Gibson joins us from The Band of The Grenadier Guards and LCoH Jackson joins us from The Minden Band of The Queen’s Division, and needless to say they’re both fitting in very well indeed. We were LCpl Wrighton riding Joey also, of course, delighted that two members of our clarinet section, LCpl riding kit and concentrate on dismountWright and Musn Tingley, returned ed duties leading up to the Christmas from maternity-leave at the end of the festivities……. but no! The band has summer and it’s fair to say the clarinets gone to supply the usual panache to the are now sounding much better for it! Lord Mayor’s Show and take its place Congratulations also to LCpl Wrighton in the Kuwaiti State Visit in Windsor in and Ellie on their marriage in the sumNovember, and, of course, was at the mer and also to Musn Hollie Tingley centre of the British Military Tattoo in and FLCoH Tingley on their wedding December, all of which saw us on horseand the birth of their second son Matback again. thew. All in all it’s been a very busy, memoAfter such a remarkable and demandrable and enjoyable year, and morale ing year, one would be forgiven for remains as high as ever. thinking that it’s time to hang up the

BATUS - The Regimental Deployment by Captain PJR Chishick

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he Regiment deployed to BATUS at the end of April for Exercise PRAIRIE THUNDER (PT) 1 and 2. RHQ, HQ Sqn and B Sqn (in WMIK) deployed for both exercises, with A and C Sqns deploying for Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER 1 and 2 respectively as the FR Armoured Squadron in CVR(T), with a change over in the middle. The British Army Training Unit Suffield, or BATUS, is a training area in Alberta, Canada, covering around 1000km2 of Prairie. This, in effect, is an area the size of a small country and is bigger than all the training areas of the UK and Germany put together, making it an ideal training area for armoured vehicles and a manoeuvre Battle Group. Without the restrictions due to space of the United Kingdom, the range complex is unsurpassed in its ability to provide realistic and effective live-fire training in all the weapons systems in use by the Army from 5.56mm SA80 up to 120mm Challenger 2 main armament. The Regiment arrived in BATUS as the ISTAR BG in support of the 1RRF BG on Ex PT 1 and 2RTR BG on Ex PT 2. Whilst

seeming somewhat the poorer relation next to the Armoured Infantry and then Armoured BGs, we made the most of the resources and the training that BATUS laid on for us. The staff there were fairly stretched, with what was effectively four Battle Groups going through an exercise originally intended for two, with the CSS Battle Group and the COEFOR Battle Group from 2LANCS in addition to those already mentioned. Despite the vast area, real estate and resources were in short supply but the training staff fought through and managed what was in effect not far from a Brigade-level exercise. We deployed in early May for the month long exercise, though, as was to become a theme for the rest of the exercise, the ISTAR BG led the way, deploying on D-1, before the other BGs. The first two weeks of the exercise comprised the live firing package, a gradual progression culminating in a combined arms Delay battle centred on our FR Sqn with a company of Infantry dug-in in support, AS90, 81mm Mortars, Simulated Close Air Support and, of course, our integral 30mm Rarden cannons.

B Squadron, as the Brigade Reconnaissance Force Sqn, found themselves conducting compound clearances in the well constructed live-firing compound villages as well as making good use of their heavy weapons on their RWMIKs including HMG and GMG. Convoy escort tasks on ranges out in BATUS enabled 360o arcs of fire and range templates were sufficiently large to facilitate this. Whilst all this was going on, BG HQ was going through the planning cycle for some of these ranges and practicing stepping-up and communicating over long-range and complex terrain. TAC and the Commanding Officer deployed forward for some of the ranges testing their command, control and communications as well as getting a few rounds down range as well! Throughout all of this also, the ECCP and the LAD were getting thoroughly tested by vehicles that had been left outside in the Canadian Winter with no chance to run up properly due to track mileage. A lot of problems were ironed out in the first week of ranges and some long hours were put in by the REME.

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 23


Whilst this might sound like the standard range package that one might find at Castlemartin Ranges or other ranges in the UK, soldiers were living in the field throughout, and carrying out drills as they would for real. There were long road moves and tactical moves with drivers getting more track miles in a week than they would in a year in the UK, building a base of experience in terms of vehicle maintenance that they would struggle to get from the limited time on the vehicles back at home. Fatigue was an issue the troops had to deal with, with long hours in mounted OPs and the trials of dismounted close combat in 30o C heat. Also, in another characteristic of BATUS, troops experienced the trials of the Canadian weather, with the training area throwing what could effectively be “four seasons in a day” at the exercising troops; we had snow and sleet when we first arrived to be followed a few days later by a heatwave in the high 30s and then torrential rain and thunderstorms making the ground nigh impassable at times. After a maintenance day and a day converting to the blank-firing ’Tactical Effects Simulation’ (TES) phase of the exercise, the Regiment deployed against a live, free-thinking enemy made up by 2LANCS. Within the scenario of COESCEN the LANCS were representing the ever-aggressive Northern Democratic Federation in another land-grabbing quest. As the ISTAR BG we were tasked in our first mission with crossing two rivers, identifying crossing sites on both for the follow-on BG, and probing deep behind the Forward Line of Own Troops into the enemy’s rear area and identifying the Enemy dispositions on a number of assessed Main Defensive Positions; this was a classic FR task and one which the BG embraced with relish. A dismounted OP was launched by helicopters behind the enemy lines to report on the enemy MDA, which it

did, successfully identifying the enemy HQ and Logistics areas, the remainder seized crossings with the wheeled and tracked squadrons before pushing up to the second river and stealing a march on the enemy by exploiting an open crossing there as well, all within one cycle of darkness. This tempo of operations was set high and remained so throughout the two weeks, with our main aim to minimise compromise by the enemy – running “silent and deep” as was the alleged aim of 3 Tp B Sqn, nicknamed “Red October” (after the eponymous submarine). The enemy were in SALAMANDER and STURGEON – old CVR(T) Scorpion and Spartan fitted with modifications to make them look like T80 and BMPs respectively, and with the corresponding TES-fit, consequently, it was not advisable for us to try to take on a T80 with 30mm! Matters were not helped by the fact that a cycle of darkness in BATUS was only really 5 hours, leaving us with limited time to achieve our taskings the night afforded us the greatest protection from the enemy, as an encounter with BG HQ on the move and a troop of enemy WMIK less than 500m away (who remarkably did not identify the CVR(T)) shows. Operations progressed, with little time between missions and no sooner had we recce’d and reported on one enemy position than we were then moved off to another tasking. The scenario changed from full-scale conventional war-fighting to a more hybrid environment as the exercise progressed enabling the Squadrons to practice stabilisation operations and elements of Counter Insurgency, though our main focus tended to be on conventional reconnaissance tasks and shaping the battlespace and the intelligence picture for the follow-on BG. This was done with a number of assets which, as the ISTAR BG, we fused to en-

able the most complete picture possible for the Armoured and Armoured Infantry BGs. Desert Hawk 3 and AEROSONDE real-life UAVs controlled from the TACP and Int Cell were cross-cued and combined with the feeds from our troops on the ground enabling us to give as complete a picture of the enemy situation as possible to the other BG. There were, however, a number of kinetic engagements, with B Sqn clearing through a complex of tunnels being used as an insurgent weapons cache and a number of run-ins with enemy reconnaissance elements by our Armoured and Wheeled recce. The B Sqn snipers proved particularly effective against the enemy tank commanders, several of whom were caught “Rommel”-style in the cupolas! BATUS provided a wealth of experience for the Regiment that will carry through for several years to come. Whilst not Mission Specific Training, the training at BATUS reinforces core skills and the business of soldiering in a challenging environment that is not dissimilar to the deserts of Afghanistan at times or the hills of the Falkland Isles at others, subject to the highly changing weather. The space that facilitates manoeuvre is something that we do not find elsewhere in our training areas, and despite the lack of woods, and, for that matter, trees at all, there is plenty of cover and commanders learn to use the ground to their advantage. The adventure training package that was laid on at Trails End Camp was highly impressive and around 100 soldiers were sent away between exercises to carry out activities from white water rafting to the more familiar horse-trekking. All in all, an excellent experience that will stand the Regiment in good stead for years to come.

BATUS – Command Troop – Summer 2012 by LCoH HLE Graham-Green AIO

I

n early May Command Troop rolled out of Camp Crowfoot, to embrace the challenge of maintaining command, control and communications for the ISTAR Battle Group across an area the size of all the training areas in the UK and Germany put together equivalent to the size of a small country. The name ‘Troop’ is also slightly misleading; Comd Tp, even without the attachments, comprised seven Sultans, five Spartans, two Panthers, three Land Rovers and a WMIK, which, although considerably smaller than the Armd BG HQ, was still no small beast. To this entourage was often added an array of Bulldogs,

24 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

Pinzgauers, Land Rovers and random Engineer assets, all this being herded to enable us to face the challenges of operating as an Alternate HQ, Main HQ and TAC HQ as well as, when required, two rebros and a recce party. ‘Simples’! The hard work to keep the Comd Tp fleet on the road paid dividends and the ‘protection of the ECCP’ was mostly left to the FR Sqn. This was driven by selfless acts of bravery by the unsung heroes in the driver’s cabs, such as Tpr Pritchard who dropped his vehicle’s oil on himself twice (though not entirely out of necessity) and LCpl Good who

had about three hours to change a gearbox. LCpl Hawkshaw, as the only CVR(T)-trained person on his Sultan, performed at times the role of driver, operator and commander, and the evereager Tpr Sinclair would only leave his position of readiness in his Panther to get food. But the true hero was clearly Tpr Barber who fully embraced the lifestyle of sleeping, eating and stag to its full. Setups themselves (the actual physical BG HQ) would range from “Bronze” (2 Sultans back to back), “Magnesium” (five Sultans one 12x12), “Silver” (five


Sultans, two 12x12 and one 9x9) and the un-trialled “Stone” (two Poncho, four manpacks, one TACSAT, mast, bergan full of radio batteries and LCDT). All these setups, with the exception of “Stone”, would be covered by the most beloved camnet in BATUS, a double AS90 camnet stitched together. The highs and lows surrounding the setting up of this monstrosity are too many to mention, but the high point was the troop personal best of nine minutes to setup and the low was when it had to be abandoned in the middle of the night after it set off the fire extinguishers, causing a Sultan to be taken off the road and the tent to nearly fall down, breaking the Tp’s morale on the spot. The frequency of the setting up and moving would be around every 24 hours and, hopefully, the enemies’ inability to locate us can be attributed to this; although it would also prove to be the most testing thing we would do. In the higher-intensity conventional warfighting we were in, we would often have to break down into two or three components, so if the enemy managed to locate one element, track its move or in the worst case scenario if a HQ node was struck, the battle could be flicked to another part of the 'three legged stool' without any break in C2 to the BG. Though a node would often consist of only two staff officers, two operators and two watchkeepers with three drivers to protect them, it did prove successful. In essence a BG HQ is not supposed to operate beyond the FLET yet it worked,

despite its drawbacks compared to the more comfortable life a BGHQ would have in a COIN environment. One of the most memorable moments was during a stand-off with the COEFOR light recce, when, during a move, four Sultans found themselves less than 500m from a troop of enemy WMIKs; luckily the fog of war and Capt Chishick controlling the UAV overhead kept us away from direct confrontation. When our paths did cross the troop went firm and we attempted to 'hold our nerve' as the WMIKs went static; LCpl Archer, who was clearly suffering from some skill fade in the drivers cab, went to turn his convoy light off and instead turned on his full headlights with potentially disastrous consequences, but the WMIKs instead just decided to drive off! One of the first lessons in war may be to never underestimate your enemy, but in this case we had clearly over-estimated ours. The capture of the Regt 2IC, Maj Gaselee, and the IO, Capt Chishick, along with half of Comd Tp would have no doubt been quite the propaganda coup! Though the question remains to this day what happened in the back of 0B the primary CV; the RSO, Capt Taylor, fearing a crypto compromise, apparently adopted the 'necessary measures'. The RSCoH, CoH Sentence, was clearly shaken by what he witnessed, but to this day has not uttered a word about what he saw that night; the level of dedication of those two men to our communications cannot be underestimated.

However, not all of the Tp’s activities were restricted to C2, and with the new RCM, WO1 Fry, the Tp embarked on a number of ‘extra-curricular activities’ which were somewhat more kinetic than one would expect from a traditional Comd Tp, as a result of these activities some of the Troop battle honours include: • The capture of an SVR and ECCP complete with around 10 enemy soldiers. • The capture of two enemy bridging assets. • The destruction of an armoured column with stand off fires, as it attempted to locate BGHQ. • The capture of the enemy CO, Lt Col Unsworth 2 LANCS and his entire TAC group. If one thing had to be taken above all others from the experience, it is the importance of the team. In a troop that ranges from the freshest driver straight out of training or Knightsbridge to the commander himself, all the cogs are in place and this, alongside an overriding sense of purpose, enabled the success we enjoyed. As a Troop our mark was made, namely, setting the gold standard for communications in 1 Mech Bde as well as proving that a BG HQ can operate beyond the FLET, in all conditions even when sometimes only comprised of two Sultans and a Land Rover and a rather tired Regimental Second in Command!

BATUS - C Squadron - Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER - PT 2

by Lt J Campbell

A

fter spending a long and quiet six weeks in Windsor without A or B Sqn it was finally time for C Sqn to pack up and get ready for our long journey to the Canadian Prairie.

Alberta before it was a shock when the bus only had to take three turns from leaving the airport to arriving on camp at BATUS, over a journey of approximately three hours.

During the build up to PT2, C Sqn had spent a week in Herefordshire ensuring that everyone was up to date on their annual military skills tests, this also gave us the chance to get used to working with each other and a good opportunity to unwind in some great local pubs.

After settling into Camp Crowfoot, our on/off home for the next six weeks, it was straight to work. The advance party had taken over vehicles from A Sqn so it was all hands to the pump on the tank park, Tp Ldrs included much to their surprise. When we weren’t working on the vehicles the Sqn was busy in lectures, rehearsals or any other activity that kept us busy and after the first few days everyone was desperate to deploy and get cracking with the exercise.

At 0200 on 14 Jun 12 the Sqn paraded outside the gym in Windsor before embarking on an epic 20 hour journey to the British Army Training Unit Suffield (BATUS). On arrival at Calgary airport we briefly passed the returning troops from A Sqn who had just completed PT 1 and were looking very brown, mozziebitten and sporting a hideous collection of moustaches, the worst of which belonged to their 2IC, Capt Ashby. For those in the Sqn who hadn’t been to

The bar had been firmly set by A Sqn who had a successful PT 1, this resulted in a healthy competitive spirit throughout the Sqn as everyone wanted to confirm that C Sqn was the best. D-Day was on Sun 24 Jun; the Sqn had moved all of our vehicles to the ‘dust bowl’ the night

before as we were deploying 24 hours ahead of the remainder of the battle group and wanted to get out of the gate before the rest of the vehicles turned up.

LCpl (Red) Ross expressing himself on the tank park

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 25


Keeping everything moving, another replen

We then had a 40 km move to reach our first range package and the Tp Ldrs had wagers running on how long it would take for the first vehicle to break down; 5 km in the Sqn Ldr’s Panther overheated, and continued to do so for the remainder of the four-week exercise, much to the amusement of everyone else in the Sqn. The first two weeks of the exercise were live fire ranges, progressing from section level to Tp and Sqn level advances and withdrawals, with some night firing packages thrown in for good measure. During the second week the Sqn was split and attached to the RIFLES and 2RTR, where we were used as fire support for dismounted assaults on compounds and villages; this was a great opportunity to practice using rapid rates of fire from both the 30mm and the 7.62mm on enemy depth positions whilst dismounted troops used our vehicles for cover on their approach to enemy positions.

UEFA Cup Final Radio making us feel almost there!

It was agreed that the live fire packages were some of the most comprehensive

The prairie gets too much for Capt Woolf (2IC)

and well-run ranges that most members of the Sqn had been through in their Army careers and having successfully completed the first half of the exercise with good feedback from our mentor/ advisors, C Sqn were in an excellent position to move into the next phase, TES. We had two days to transfer from live firing to TES including fitting and testing about a mile of cables per vehicle, not an easy task in 36˚C heat. This was also a rare opportunity to try and squeeze in a field shower but this was a challenge when rationed to three minutes of water per man. C Sqn had now gone fully tactical, so all vehicles and their occupants were fully camouflaged to blend in with the Canadian prairie, and we were ready and waiting for our first set of orders from the Sqn Ldr. Our first mission was to push to the east approximately 15-20 km in front of the main battle group and set up a screen overlooking the likely approach routes of the enemy; all moves were now by night, which tested individual’s navigation skills and movement was further slowed as we were now also only moving crosscountry. Once in position the troops on the ground put in some very impressive OP’s after long nights digging and longer days lying up in the soaring heat and mosquito-infested holes, this was a great test to ensure the highest standard of individual administration and discipline as we remained in position for up to 72 hours. We successfully reported on enemy movement corridors, which in turn allowed the battle group to execute a further mission to attrit the

Pimms o’clock on the prairie

enemy. The ground took more prisoners than the enemy over the two week period; during a bridge crossing at night, 3 Tp who were in the lead, managed to break or bog-in three vehicles in the space of five minutes. The ground gave way underneath its lead vehicle, the rescue vehicle then sheared an idler, which the left the remainder of the Sqn bunched and waiting to cross the bridge to our rear, and we were rapidly losing the cover of darkness. The Tp Ldr then decided to come to their assistance, but low and behold he managed to drive his vehicle off a 5 foot sand bank and break his rear idler as well. So 3 Tp were well out of the battle and had to be dragged into dead ground where they lay low during the day working on the vehicles before being able to rejoin the Sqn the following night. The exercise overall was a fantastic success and left the Sqn in a fantastic position to move straight into pre-deployment training after summer leave for Op HERRICK 18.

Op OLYMPICS by Capt JCT Rawdon-Mogg

A

s the country prepared itself for a summer of festivities and the Olympic Games, D Sqn was looking forwards to summer leave after an extremely busy year. However, 16 Air Asslt Bde as the primary contingent

force and manpower pool was tasked to provide an element of the security at the Olympic Park and did so with a contingent from D Sqn. This troop, led by Ct Churcher, was

sent to be based in North-East London for two months and ran the security for the Media Centre in the Olympic Park. This proved to be a fairly arduous task, working for six days a week with a very limited period of downtime every day.

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 27


Ct Churcher and CoH Salmon were instrumental in dealing with a number of incidents on their gate, the most serious being a fatal car crash; for this Ct Churcher was awarded a commendation by GOC London District. As the G4S crisis of manning security at the games grew the rest of the Sqn was stood to as part of the Airborne Task Force in order to plug the gap in manpower. After a short period of hanging in limbo, at four hours notice to move, the call was received and the entire Sqn packed their bags and headed off to Longmoor for a hastily put together crash course in security screening.

All smiles, D Sqn officers lobbying the Mayor hard for tickets

tioned and transformed into emergency accommodation for 5,000 troops. All of the shops had been turned into dormitories for sub-units from all over the country and beyond, yet sadly we drew the short straw and ended up in the underground service corridor in the bowels of the complex. It was far from ideal, but the food was excellent and morale was boosted further by visits from VIPs such as Boris Johnson, amongst others. Boris particularly enjoyed being lobbied about tickets for the lads by various troop leaders, much to the chagrin of the media minders behind us!

The Luxurious D Sqn accommodation at Tobacco Dock

Several coach journeys and hours travelling later, we arrived at our digs for the games; the ‘luxurious’ Tobacco Dock in East London is an abandoned shopping centre, complete with years of pigeon guano, which the Army requisi-

Together with elements from the Pathfinders, 7 RHA and 216 Sigs Sqn, our role was to be the reserve element for all six West London Olympic Venues. This involved being stood to for four hours in the morning and in the evening in order to cover any failing in G4S manpower at any venue. It was a close call on a couple of occasions, however, we were not actually deployed to any of the venues over the period of the games. The closest that we got to actually doing a task was to assist at Lords Cricket

Ground where the archery was held, only to be beaten to the task by an engineer unit from Germany. This had its perks as having got there, but without a task, meant a pleasant afternoon sitting in the stands at Lords watching the archers compete. All members of the Sqn were allowed the freedom to roam the city and try their luck at the various venues. Officially we did not have access but in true D Sqn spirit reports came in from a considerable number of different sports. It is no surprise that the favourite was the Beach Volleyball on Horse Guards Parade but the boys also saw the hockey, tennis, swimming and show-jumping. The troop on duty soldiered on at the Olympic Park throughout the Olympic and Paralympic Games, earning a well deserved late summer leave in September. Overall the Sqn enjoyed being a part of Op OLYMPICS and contributing towards what was a hugely successful year for Great Britain.

London Poppy Day 2012 by CoH Snoxell

O

ur aim was simple - raise as much money as possible for an amazing charity close to all our hearts, the Poppy Appeal 2012. The Royal British Legion had set itself the ambitious target of raising £1 million in a single day across the whole of London, a challenge which had never been achieved to date.

LCpl Latham, Tpr Blake and a Mounted duty man from HCMR

28 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

In order to make this target we had to start early. Under the direction of Mark Antelme (ex RHG/D) who was heading up our area in Chancery Lane, and complemented by his team from Pelham Bell Pottinger, we hit the streets dressed to impress…despite being in FAD! Business was steady all day with every effort made to squeeze every commuter, tourist and day tripper for every penny; we thankfully received some essential reinforcements for the lunch time rush from HCMR. After a long, cold and windy day, our final figure was £10,964 thanks to everyone's valiant efforts; it was a great result, not only that we beat last year's £7k but also firmly exceeded our already ambitious target for the day of £10k. The final figure for across London was £750k, not quite the million pound target but still an excellent sum for a sin-

gle day. And without the ambitious target of £1m, or the Household Cavalry’s vital part, it might have been a lot less.

CoH Salmon and CoH Hogg preparing for life on Civvie Street as bus conductors


What Went Wrong at Arnhem

by LCpl R Murray

S

eptember 1944, the German Army was retreating back towards Germany. The only thing standing in the Allies’ way for a possible early end to the war was German occupied Netherlands and the formidable Rhine. Operation MARKET GARDEN was born; this was a daring bid to shorten the war, ‘Market’ was the code name for an airborne strike by the 1st British, the 82nd and 101st US Airborne Divisions and ‘Garden’ was the code name for the follow up and reinforcement by the British second Army. If the plan was going to work it would rely on the capture of three key bridges; Eindhoven Bridge, the Nijmegen Bridge and the Arnhem Bridge. What was to follow was nothing short of a disaster for the Allied Forces. The first mistake made by the Allies was that they dropped the 1st British Airborne Division eight miles away from their objective which was the road bridge over the Rhine (The bridge too far) this meant that the Paras faced a long march to their objective. The reason they were dropped so far away was because the Allies expected the bridge to be heavily defended and also wanted to keep the element of surprise, however they lost the element of surprise when 1545 transport planes flew over head. At the time of the initial drop there were very few German forces defending the bridge so, if the Paras had been dropped closer, they would have had little to no resistance and would have taken their

objective easily. A second flaw in the plan was that the Allies did not use reconnaissance aircraft. If the Allies had done this prior to the airborne assault then they would have realised that the broken German force they were expecting to face was something very different indeed. In fact they were about to come up against the 22nd German Panzer Corps which was practically at full strength with A plaque commemorating 2HCR’s valiant efforts leading 30 tanks and armoured cars Corps’s advance to reinforce the beleaguered Paras and elements of the 1st German Parachute Army as well as an SS under constant threat of German training battalion. These were comreinforcements crossing over the border manded by Field Marshal Model, one from Germany into their flank. This of Hitler’s most successful generals, and made them a predominantly defensive General Student. Even though the Allies force meaning they were unable to push were actually aware of the 22nd being forward leaving the 1st British Airborne in the area of Arnhem they thought that completely cut off in Arnhem. it was a spent force from earlier fighting in Normandy, but this was not the Summary case. Furthermore, if they had used reThe Allies were too reliant on strength connaissance aircraft they would have in numbers and made the big mistake of also known the road bridge was poorly under-estimating the Germans, hoping defended and dropped the Paras closer. that they were on the retreat and would therefore crumble under the sight of By the time that the Paras had made it such a large airborne force. Poor reto Road Bridge the SS training Battalconnaissance, poor weather and bad ion had already seized control and they supply lines along with a huge underwere reinforced a short time later by estimation of the German leadership the 22nd German Panzer Corp. There and resolve in the area led to the loss was fierce fighting but the Paras and withdrawal from Arnhem and ulwere unable to capture the bridge, timately the failure of Operation MARand to make matters worse the KET GARDEN. weather had turned for the worse which meant that Allied reinforceThe Allies made exactly the same misments were delayed, and the suptake as the British had made in 1916 durply drop point had been captured ing the Battle of ‘The Somme’ in France by the Germans which also meant during World War One, where they atno supplies. The rail bridge at Arntacked with a poor knowledge of the enhem had been blown up by the emy’s strengths and weaknesses and as Germans. a result suffered the consequences. Meanwhile the US 82nd and 101st were held up in Eindhoven and Nijmegen as they were

Everything is easily seen in hindsight, but the key lesson is never under-estimate the enemy.

volved the Master Cook and HCR Chefs conducting some familiarisation training on the OFCS, feeding over 800 people for Demonstration Day.

return of Sgt Passmore and Pte Parker from CAST/CATT in Germany after 12 weeks with excellent results

The famous bridge too far

Catering Department by SSgt M Luff

O

ver the last 12 months there have been numerous new faces within the Catering Department with old ones that have left, notably Master Chef SSgt Paul Raisborough replaced by SSgt Mark Luff. The year started at 100 mph with the ‘State of the Nation Dinner’, closely followed by HQ Sqn deploying to Salisbury Plain Training Area (SPTA) conducting low level training which in-

In early February LCpl Gurung volunteered to assist the Scots Guards Catering Department in Kenya, in March the Master Chef completed the Fleet half marathon in 97 minutes. April saw the

So with a healthy looking Department of 15 chefs we began supporting the exercises, tasks and functions for the year. This started with chefs preparing for BATUS, CT2 training and on the horizon was Pre Deployment Training in

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 29


LCpl Lamtari getting started on 600 Poppadums!

September 2012, all to be juggled with day to day business of Regimental life. The June (busy) season kicked off in the usual style with Derby Day at Epsom on Cavalry Hill (the Household Division’s largest commitment) preparing for corporate Ladies Day on the Friday followed by the Household Calvary Derby Day on Saturday feeding over 1500+ in total. The chefs worked extremely hard to keep up a fully stocked cold buffet display so that all could appreciate the display no matter what time they came in for lunch. With the Regiment away in BATUS, those left behind formed a sim-

The team pruning the impeccable display on Derby Day despite some 1500 hungry visitors

ple package to make the admin for the weekend a complete success. London District required our help to support the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Beating Retreat during the first week of June at the Horse Guards Parade. LCpl Gurung and Pte Gurung were chosen for this prestigious challenge; they served tirelessly over the course of the week to produce an outstanding party and received some well deserved praise from the Headquarters staff. More demands on the staff continued before breaking up for summer leave in August, and almost everyone enjoying some well earned rest. There was no rest however for the rear party who, on top of feeding the training wing, stables and guard, were also looking after a surge of visiting troops on Op OLYMPICS totalling over 160 in all.

The Swimathon team full of energy before the event, they were still smiling afterwards

The pace of life started to pick up immediately after summer leave with the

LSgt Watkinson winning the hotly contested Christmas Cake competition

30 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment

Regiment on pre-deployment training, annual MATTs week and Ranges. The Department had also been working tirelessly towards raising money for local and military charities; including a dinner night held in the Warrant Officers’ Mess for Help for Heroes and a swimathon for The Alzheimer’s and Dementia Charity raising over £12,000. The Windsor State Visit in November was a real test of quantity and quality, having to feed three units (HCR, HCMR and the King’s Troop) in Combermere Bks, totalling almost 900, whilst simultaneously catering the lunch for Her Majesty The Queen in the Officers’ Mess. The Department succeed in both of these challenges with outstanding results and reinforced their excellent reputation. With all that going on the chefs were preparing and decorating the cakes throughout December, to enter the 1 Mech Bde Christmas Cake competition, to help encourage a little bit of gentle rivalry and competition between the troops.

The winning entry in the delightful Christmas Cake competition


HCR Medical Centre by Maj W D Wall

2

012 proved to be a busy year for the medical centre at HCR. As well as providing continuous medical support to the regiment in camp there have been numerous exercises, ranges and training to support throughout the year. We have also seen several new arrivals with LSgt Bowness, LCpl John and Pte Masters joining the medical centre and said goodbye to LSgt Gbedebu who left the army to work as a civilian medic. In addition to the military staff, Mrs Jo McNamara the receptionist and Miss Lynn Turner the physiotherapist have both worked hard during the year to provide continuity and care while the regiment has been away. Although it is tempting to use this article to divulge all the interesting and sometimes amusing medical conundrums thrown up by Household Cavalry soldiers (….and officers) I will do my best to maintain medical confidentiality throughout. On a day to day basis the medical centre has been kept busy doing audios, vaccinations and medicals. The task of keeping regimental vaccination and audio statistics in check sometimes feels like painting the Forth Bridge, with lists constantly being sent out to squadrons identifying those individuals who are out of date. Those requiring action

then present to the medical centre to either be stabbed by a medic or put in the audio booth in the hope that they manage to hear all the high pitched bleeps; which is easier said than done after an operational tour or two. The HCMR training wing; also based at Combermere, continued to supply a steady stream of patients as inexperienced troopers found out the hard way that horses are dangerous at both ends and uncomfortable in the middle. The main test for the Regiment in the first half of 2012 was BATUS and Ex PRAIRIE THUNDER 1 and 2. This provided an excellent training opportunity for medics in a difficult pre-hospital care environment. The HCR Regimental Aid Post (RAP) manned by LSgt Clayton, LSgt Jones and myself treated over 100 patients during the exercise. Problems ranged from infected mosquito bites, and piles to more serious problems including fractures and heat stroke. During BATUS the RAP was supported by LCoH Logan and Tpr Scholes, Samaritan commander and driver respectively. They both settled into RAP life well with Tpr Scholes providing constant amusement with his verbal diarrhoea, which was untreatable even with our extensive pharmacy. B Sqn were supported

by LCpl Turner, and LCpl Githaiga; C Sqn had LCpl White and LCpl Oppong to provide medical support. Although several patients needed to be flown off the area via the Gazelle helicopter, fortunately no one was seriously injured and most importantly everyone finished the exercise in one piece. Following summer leave the regiment started mission specific training (MST) in preparation for Afghanistan in 2013. For the squadrons and medics this meant more exercises and ranges with additional focus on getting soldiers trained up as team medics. The team medic course helps to ensure soldiers have the first aid skills needed to save lives immediately after an injury is sustained. Although Bastion and Selly Oak do a fantastic job helping the injured; soldiers and medics on the ground at the point of wounding take the most important life saving decisions. Correctly using a tourniquet, first field dressing and chest seal in the first ‘Platinum’ 10 minutes can make the difference between life and death. It may be naïve to think that these skills will not be needed but if soldiers are injured in Afghanistan the training and experiences of the previous year will maximise their chance of survival.

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 31


Images From Household Cavalry Regiment

The Regtl 2IC caught red handed trying to escape the prairie

The Intelligence Officer in action on the prairie

Capt De Goede (Ops Off) doing what he’s best at

You got a pretty mouth, boy’ - the kind of people you don’t want to meet in North America

HM The Queen meeting elements of C Sqn

Nothing stops the Orderly Officer of the Household Cavalry getting about his duties

RHQ before and after Comd Tp’s magic trick

32 ■ Household Cavalry Regiment


HM The Queen being introduced to B Sqn’s Jackals

B Sqn Ldr ready to do battle

B Sqn getting to grips with the 60mm mortar

The BRF’s sharpshooters and snipers honing their skills in the snow

Who’s turn is it to throw the dice? RHQ take too literally the CO’s remark that BATUS was a giant game of Risk

It’s amazing how easily, with a few dish-dashes, you can make anywhere hot, dusty and unpleasant feel like Afghanistan!

The Village People reform, complete with Capts Chishick and Pickthall HCR BG ready to head out onto the prairie.

Household Cavalry Regiment ■ 33


Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment Foreword

By Lieutenant Colonel PA Bedford, The Blues and Royals Commanding Officer, Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

D

efence Transformation is affecting every aspect of military life in some shape or form and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, until a number of “change” programmes have been fully implemented. Although the HCMR has emerged relatively intact from the changes outlined in the new Army 2020, it will be affected to a certain degree at various stages. Aside from the transfer of a few home grown Regimental Combat Medical Technician (RCMT) posts to the Army Medical Services, HCMR’s role and ORBAT will remain unchanged for the foreseeable future. That said, as the Army reduces in size, as always, outputs will increase and more is likely to be expected from those serving. The future Army Basing Plan as briefed by the Secretary of State for Defence Mr Philip Hammond on the 5th Mar 13, which was designed to give service personnel and their families a bit more certainty from which to plan their lives, confirmed that the future basing requirement for the HCMR was under review. As Hyde Park Barracks is just over 40 years old, a number of options from upgrading to a full re-build of the Barracks in its current location, through to building a new barracks in a new location will be considered as part of a Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) sponsored Assessment Phase. As expressed specifically by the Secretary of State the solution was caveated specifically with “provided the Regiment’s requirements can be met”. As such, due consideration is being given to the Regiment’s “needs” whilst the DIO seeks to try to match them with an internal, or external “offer” from the private sector should it prove value for money to do so. For those who have served with the Mounted Regiment, it is clear that it would be very difficult to replicate a route to mount the Queen’s Life Guard (QLG), which provides the same degree of protection to horse and soldier, as well as the minimum disruption to London traffic. That said, it is entirely appropriate for the question to be asked, to ensure that the Army doesn’t inadvertently discount a potential new site which may offer a vastly increased standard of living for both soldiers and horses, than is currently envisioned. Much improvement in the training of

mounted dutymen has taken place over the last 12-18mths, prior to my tenure. Capt Davie, the outgoing Trg Wing OC, has done a considerable amount of work reviewing our Phase 3, Khaki + Kit Ride courses; looking at the requirement from base principles and then carrying out a basic Training Needs Analysis (TNA). The course designs are now in line with current Army practices: shorter, more focused, with a greater emphasis on developing equitation skills for the majority of the soldiers, who have never been near a horse. However, as resources are stretched and every aspect of how we consume them are challenged at every turn, the remainder of our activities, particularly those undertaken at external locations are being scrutinised, to ensure that they are still relevant and as cost effective as possible. As such, Maj Douglas, who has just taken over the HCTW, in concert with the subject matter expertise of Capt Chambers, the Riding Master, will be leading on a complete review of all mounted and equine related training, from basic Mounted Dutyman, through refresher training, continuation, to the requirements of the riding staff. Where possible, this will draw on current best practice in the civilian world, by aligning all military equine training and accreditation with the relevant levels of the British Horse Society (BHS). This will ensure that all our training is relevant to role, but takes due consideration of external best practice. Although subjectively it is clear that the current training continuum is fit for purpose and more than likely as cost effective as it could ever be, it makes eminent sense in these austere times for it to be reviewed, updated if necessary, not least to quash any preconceptions from external stake-

34 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

holders who believe that there are further economies to be made. In recent years it has become far more common for officers, as well as soldiers to start their careers with the Mounted Regiment and then go to Windsor about 18 months later. Although not ideal from a personal perspective as some contemporaries will begin at Windsor, it does mean that when they do so, they will be more up to date, particularly as the Royal Armoured Corps re-organizes, when they move to the HCR. However, accepting the potential skill fade issues, where possible, the aspiration is for all future Tp Ldrs bound for HCMR first to do armoured training before joining riding school. In the interim, aside from the far more challenging aspects of managing a considerably larger troop, every opportunity to expose them to the “greener” side of the Army will be taken, to ensure that their time at HCMR “adds value”. In the last twelve months, individuals have attended P Coy, the Infantry Platoon Commander’s course


and work is on-going to try and get individuals away on overseas exercises with various Foot Guard Battalions. The third tranche of the Army Redundancy programme was announced in January, with the final selections are due to be published in mid-June. With circa 50% of the Regiment’s total manpower “In Field”, who could be either selected as “volunteers” or, “non-volunteers” with 6 and 12mths respectively to serve, this could have a significant impact on the Regiment. Of note, in certain ranks, it potentially affects up to 80%. Although only a proportion may be selected as “non-volunteers”, any “volunteers” could well be gone within 2-3 months from notification. Replacing equine trained individuals at short notice could potentially exacerbate the

impact on the HCR, as equine trained personnel are pulled to fill gaps, or even greater strain is placed on a very lean HCTW. Although it is hard to tell what the overall impact will be, if any, on the Regiment, the onus rests with us to mitigate against it as best possible. Further to which, as the RAC reduces in size over the next 12-18mths, there will potentially be a number of newly cap badged transfers into the Regiment. We will need to ensure that their transfer is as straightforward as possible and that they are integrated without delay into the Regimental Family. Looking ahead after a busy ceremonial season last year, the Regiment is now focusing on our basics; concentrating on improving core mounted and equine skills such as stable management and

riding. Where possible, improving man planning to better the quality of life of young soldiers. Concurrently, ensuring that all internal processes are fit for purpose to meet our current and projected tasks, as well as ensuring that they are sufficiently robust to manage the impact of T3 redundancy. With regards to the programme, there is much to look forward to: there will be more emphasis on exchange opportunities, Sport, Adventure Training, Community Engagement, as well as overseas Battlefield Tours. Building on the outstanding sporting achievements of individuals in the Regiment in basketball, volleyball, boxing, swimming as well as a number of other individual and team achievements over the last twelve months will be a major focus, to try to offset the everyday challenges of life at HCMR.

Diary of Events

by Capt R J Spiller, Adjutant

T

he Diamond Jubilee and the Olympic Games made 2012 an extraordinarily crowded year, with the normal State Ceremonial events ensuring that operational tempo was maintained at a high level throughout. However, at a time when the Army is looking to reduce in size, we felt it important to be making a substantive contribution on the principle that ‘it is better to be looked over than overlooked’. Therefore the Regiment took as prominent a role as possible in national events throughout the year. Amongst the endless planning meetings of January, an RHQ visit to the Danish Guard Hussars in Copenhagen provided evidence for a substantial re-writing of the Mounted Dutyman Course. The resultant rebalancing means more riding and less polishing, and has allowed the ‘Khaki Ride’ to be reduced by four weeks whilst maintaining the same outputs. Capt T W J Davie LG took over the good work of Capt DJ Payne LG to complete the transformation of the Training Wing – a project that continues apace. Advantage was also taken of the relatively quiet period to overhaul the Regiment’s Information Management before the first ceremonial event of the year: a Staircase Party for the Australian Prime Minister. The Major General inspected Warburg Ride’s Kit Pass Out in early February, giving the yards a welcome fillip of manpower before the season began in earnest with another Staircase Party, this time for the President of Tonga. A Defence Diplomacy visit saw a large delegation of Commonwealth High Commissioners visit Hyde Park Bar-

Joey from War Horse added variety to the Beating Retreat programme

racks, a key means by which HCMR’s value can be quantified across government. This was followed by the visit of the son of the Sultan of Johor to the Barracks. Community Engagement began to expand with a large visit of Brownies and Guides from Birmingham who raised money through sponsored cleaning of State Kit! March was dominated by preparations for the Major General’s Inspection: this was the first inspection by Maj Gen G P R Norton CBE since his appointment in July 2011, and he was shown as much of the Barracks and soldiers’ living conditions as he was of the horses: a reflection

of the Commanding Officer’s directive – ‘soldier first’. April began with some leave that was rapidly followed by a four-day Art Exhibition in the Barracks. This enormously successful event exhibited the work of three young equestrian artists who had been given unlimited access to the Regiment in order to capture a special year. Their renderings of the Royal Wedding and much behind the scenes were a sell-out, and raised much for Regimental charities. The Richmond Trophy was as competitive as ever, despite the relative lack of preparation time, and a thoroughly deserving winner was

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 35


found in Tpr Morrison RHG/D, beating strong competition from Tprs Attakorah and Day of the LG. Further exploration of other armies’ approaches to mounted duties was undertaken in Sweden, with many new ideas being brought back.

at home and in Afghanistan. After a fraught Escort for the Olympic Torch, Queen’s Life Guard continued throughout the Games, using alternative routes to avoid the Beach Volleyball on Horse Guards. HCMR’s soldiers attracted much positive comment as they assisted with venue security. Hyde Park Barracks also played host to an additional 300 military personnel in support of the Olympics – a major test for the Quartermaster, Capt N M Stewart LG and his team. HCMR soldiers also took prominent part in flag-raising and medal ceremonies for both the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

May was dominated by the State Opening of Parliament and Diamond Jubilee Pageant in Windsor, somewhat unhelpfully occurring in the same week. This necessitated much movement up and down the M4 as rehearsals for both necessarily overlapped. The international nature of the Pageant meant frustratingly long days with tired horses and soldiers resulting. However, the show was an event not to be missed, and the Regiment and Bands played a full part. A further Staircase Party preceded Cavalry Memorial Sunday.

LCoH Balasco taking a laid back approach

out incident: even the announcement of redundancies, both voluntary and compulsory, in the week of the Parade did not deflect the Regiment from its purpose.

The Forage Master, SCpl Adams, assists LCoH Jones to fall in for the State Opening escort

An abbreviated Regimental Training of 2 weeks followed in early-July, held this year (most successfully) at West Tofts Camp, the highlights of which were the visit of Colonel RHG/D to take part (on horseback) in Ex TRYOUT and our Open Weekend which broke previous attendance records. On our return to London the Regiment’s focus moved quickly on to Op OLYMPICS although over 100 personnel had already been training for some time to be ready to be employed as part of the Military Contingency Force under Maj SF Deverell RHG/D. Amongst all this we launched ‘Uniquely British’, a new book depicting the Household Cavalry’s activities

The presence of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Band of the Royal Oman Cavalry on Queen’s Life Guard again focused minds on the international nature of the Jubilee, and provided some memorable photographs. The Major General’s Review of the QBP was somewhat impeded by the presence of the Jubilee grandstands, with the Diamond Jubilee Escort following on the Tuesday. This was a truly memorable event, with a stupendous crowd lining every inch of the route. The proximity of the The King’s Troop’s gun salute on Horse Guards made for a much faster pace than planned, as the carriage horses and escort took a stronger hold with every discharge. However, the dressing was maintained, and the parade was concluded with a rousing three cheers back in barracks led by the RCM, WO1 WD Brown LG. Despite the interrupted preparations, the Queen’s Birthday Parade and Garter Service passed with-

36 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

Finding time for Summer leave was made difficult before the horses came back in from grass to prepare for not one but two Autumn State Visits, with the President of Indonesia (London) and Amir of Kuwait (in Windsor) visiting either side of the usual features of the Lord Mayor’s Show and Remembrance Sunday in early November. Some extracurricular activity was enjoyed, including a Football Tour for 25 personnel to the USA, and Battlefield Tours for over 180 personnel to Arnhem, Holland, following 2 HCR’s advance during Operation MARKET GARDEN. We have also had much sporting success throughout the year. The year ended with a major commitment to the British Military Tournament. It has been frenetic, but HCMR has been at the forefront of an historic year. It has been a year of great change as well as great events, with the launch of the Household Cavalry Foundation and confirmation that HCMR’s role will continue following ‘Army 2020’ perhaps the most significant.

LCoH Tate jumping through fire for the British Military Tournament press day


The Life Guards Squadron

T

he Life Guards Squadron has this year been operating at a high tempo. Some things don’t change, however, as you can always throw in a few extra parades and see how the lads deal with it. The autumn of 2011 saw the State Visit of Turkey conducted in London with a Double Standard which not only provided a challenge for our men on horses, but also required three separate staircase parties as well. After delivering a successful Musical Ride Display at the Horse of the Year Show at Birmingham’s NEC the Squadron’s horses were posted to the fields of Leicestershire so that our soldiers could take a well deserved Christmas leave break after what had been a hectic year. Maj NPG Van Cutsem at this stage handed over command to the Maj CT Meredith-Hardy and WO2 Gibson moved downstairs into the Quartermaster’s Department. He was succeeded by WO2 ‘Nudge’ Newell, a former member of the Riding Staff, who took proud possession of the set of SCM’s tail scissors. The first action of the year was to receive the woolly mammoths back from winter grass. Some displayed matted dreadlocks. Others sadly didn’t grow their coats long enough and were not able to be released into the wilds. After the prolonged bathing sessions (removing mud), clipping sessions (three hours per horse), farriery, leg trimming, mane and tail pulling and exercise build-up programmes we had a fleet of Military Working Horses fit for Ceremonial Duties. Our soldiers had been maxing out on opportunities for personal training and development (eg Part 1 Signals and CVR(T) training) even as the build up of Ceremonial Activity was kicking in. All the while the Squadron was kept to the grindstone of Queen’s Life Guard duty and dressing up to impress a number of VIPs either on Staircase Parties or out and about in central London. The Major General’s Parade came and passed, with the odd loose girth causing embarrassment during the rehearsals along with a few excitable re-mounts doing their best to behave badly. In April came the exhaustive process of 50% manning over Easter leave with 85% of the Squadron’s Horses in the yards. HCTW was heavily in business which released a number of horses to trainees but this period is hard graft. I was seriously impressed at the ability of six or seven men to look after a yard of 28 horses. Double ride and lead exercises with four horses to groom was the

The Squadron on Major General’s Parade, Hyde Park

fashion. May started with a turbo-charged injection of State Ceremonial. The State Opening of Parliament was on and it wasn’t the only parade that week. No 1 Division from the Squadron completed the State Opening of Parliament returning to barracks for 1300 hrs. Mission Impossible then began with the task of boxing up a Division of horses, their kit, and their riders in full MRO and transferring to a waterlogged show-ground below Windsor Castle and getting on the parade rehearsal for the Diamond Jubilee Pageant in ERO (Inclement Weather). The roll call was made at 2000 hrs and The Life Guards had done it. (A little bird told the tale of a young man from another place who remained in the cleaning room tent after realising he had left his horse’s saddle at Hyde Park Barracks). The show rehearsal went ahead and the rain did not stop falling for three hours. The Diamond Jubilee Pageant was a fantastic international spectacle with a large event performer’s welfare tent. Sadly for my men they were usurped by the Italian 8th Lancieri di Montebello display team who were insistent on destroying any liaison between HCMR soldiers and the Montana lasso girls. On return to Hyde Park Barracks many soldiers asked themselves ‘What just happened’. We suddenly had a few moments to reflect and enjoy Cavalry Memorial Sunday. A team of psychologists visited to establish what makes a young man want to join the Household Cavalry. Many of us ask “Why didn’t I choose an easier job?” We were lucky enough to host the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who conducted Queen’s Life

Guard and made generous gifts of their Stetson Hats. The week to out do all weeks at the Mounted Regiment began on Monday 28 May: two Key Appointments briefs, two Early Morning Rehearsals, Regimental Drills, Buckingham Palace Investiture, Major General’s Rehearsal of The Queen’s Birthday Parade, extended Watering Order exercise two days in a row culminating in the Diamond Jubilee Escort on Tuesday 5th June. The EMR for the Jubilee had been peaceful and calm. The parade itself involved huge crowds screaming their appreciation for their Monarch and the audio splendour our friends in The King’s Troop they were firing their guns from Horse Guards every 15 seconds which proved

Rehearsal for the Garter Service, Windsor Castle

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 37


dia, doctors and general public provided excellent reality to the exercise whilst the soldiers maintained a calm control of each situation.

Op TRYOUT. The cordon is maintained, Stanford Training Area

to be an accelerator for our horses and a cause of great concern to our Mounted Dutymen. I can safely say that week I was commanding a squadron of zombies. We were all in auto-pilot working to a routine and conducting our tasks at the most efficient rate possible. After the Queen’s Birthday Parade and Garter Service was seen something not seen for a long time - three troopers chatting and relaxing on the T-piece of a yard. The wind-down had begun for some. Thirty-six soldiers from the Squadron were not part of this. They were following Capt Hopkinson (who put himself forward to be tasered by 50,000 Volts as part of a demonstration) in the role of Military Contingency

Force support to Op OLYMPICS. They secured the arrival of Olympic Athletes into the competitors’ village and put themselves and some baggage through the oversize X-ray machines (known as Rapi-scanners). They were then held as a reserve for the majority of the games excluding a few days in Wimbledon, and security of The Mall during the Paralympic Marathons and Team GB Athlete’s Parade. Summer Camp took on a lower profile this year yet we still managed to conduct Ex TRYOUT with three mounted divisions. The Colonel, The Blues and Royals, rode behind the carriage as simulated IEDs and gunshots were unleashed on us. The role players of me-

The rest of Regimental Training was made up of relaxed 0800 hrs stables, hacks and show-jumping with Trooper McVicar on Evolution making strong performances in the competitions. The Musical Ride entertained the 5,000 strong crowds at Open Day along with the Commanding Officer revealing raffle winners on the microphone. As we move forward into the Winter of 2012/13 we accept that no matter what developments we make in electronic working practices or human resource management the role of a Trooper at Knightsbridge is to parade at 0600 hrs, usually six days a week, muck out three horses and ride and lead a daily exercise. We have 36 Troopers down in the yards that must perform Queen’s Life Guard every one in three Guards. This commitment to duty is what makes Household Cavalrymen what they are and is recognised in all of our soldiers, be they training for or deployed on operations, conducting a staircase party at Buckingham Palace, or just going out for a hack in the park with the Chief of the General Staff.

The Blues and Royals Squadron

A

t the start of 2012 the Squadron waited expectantly for, what had widely been forecast as, the ceremonial season of the century. Still reeling from Royal Wedding fame, here we were on the precipice of the Diamond Jubilee and London 2012 Olympic Games.

Thankfully, The Blues and Royals Mounted Squadron was in capable hands. CoH Scholes, the Sqn Senior Equitation Instructor, and his team of spurmen steered us through rigorous build up routines and horse inspections in preparation for the Major General’s Inspection in March; turning shaggy, dreadlocked beasts into shining, clipped destriers. The Major General’s Inspection went off without a hitch and despite the Media Officer’s best efforts to clog the barracks with journalists and photographers during the crucial preparation days. In fact, the soldiers rose to the occasion, gelling their hair and spraying on a bit of Old Spice before delivering charismatic, albeit flirty, interviews to delightful weather girls and female presenters. Of particular note was LCpl O’Mahoney, then Trooper, who gave the interview of the year to Phillip Schofield. After sur-

viving a ‘head-on’ collision with a taxi before Christmas, LCpl O’Mahoney refused to die and was back at work within a few months against the doctors orders and with a skull shaped like a 50 pence coin. Near death didn’t faze him so Mr Schofield certainly wasn’t going to either. When demonstrating jack-boot polishing on camera, Phillip Schofield asked Tpr O’Mahoney: “So you could really spend your whole life polishing then?” Tpr O’Mahoney, a fan of Phillip Schofield’s popular TV show ‘The Cube’, replied: “Well that is what we’re known for Phillip. There’s no Simplifier in this game!” Without much time to breathe the Sqn was soon preparing for action again. This time it was the State Opening of Parliament and the Diamond Jubilee Pageant. The latter involved a mass horse move to temporary stables in Windsor at the Windsor Horse Show Ground. A Captain’s Escort was used to escort the carriage from the Castle to the Show Ground every night. Despite the muddy, wet conditions and the presence of hundreds of strange and exotic horses, the men did a brilliant job

38 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

of turning out in immaculate order and controlling some very skittish horses in front of an audience of thousands. At this point the nation entered Jubilee fever. A holiday atmosphere abounded outside the Ceremonial Gate, but inside Squadron Corporal Major WO2 Ireland and his Corporals of Horse worked tirelessly to keep the Squadron from breaking point. Over 170 horses were required for the Diamond Jubilee Procession which fell amid rehearsals for the Queen’s Birthday Parade and on top of that were pressures and friction in Squadron manning. The week preceding the Diamond Jubilee held no less than four Regimental Rehearsals. Two of these started at 2 am and one was the Major Generals Review of the Queen’s Birthday Parade in full Mounted Review Order. To say that the Squadron was ‘chin-strapped’ by the weekend would be putting it lightly. However, the following Tuesday was the Diamond Jubilee Procession itself. This was undoubtedly an unforgettable experience as well as a white knuckle ride. The escort was going seamlessly until the King’s Troop opened fire on Horse Guards Parade as we entered the


The Squadron on The Mall after the Queen’s Birthday Parade

Mall. This gun fire effectively called for an involuntary Regimental transition to canter as the horses reacted to the guns and the hundreds of thousands of flag waving, cheering masses. All acquitted themselves well and arrived in one piece and, more importantly, mounted at Buckingham Palace in time to salute as Her Majesty moved through the forecourt. Following the Diamond Jubilee, the Queen’s Birthday Parade and Windsor Garter Service were quite pedestrian affairs. The next highlight was Regimental Training when half the Squadron journeyed to the depths of Thetford, where many of the new Troopers found that they were equestrian wunderkinds, thriving in the relaxed environment and competing well at show jumping, cross country and tent pegging. God also proved that he is, in fact, a Blue and Royal, when the only day of sun on Holkham Beach fell when The Blues and Royals Squadron was there. Due to this the media was there in force. Tpr, now LCpl, Fisher made the front page of The

RHG/D Squadron playing horseball

Times when he fell off in the sea and let his horse get away from him. LCpl Shutt and Tpr Marskell both gave away their secret passion for ponies when they were unknowingly snapped in ‘cute’ embraces with their steeds. Back in London, the other half of Squadron was busy training to deploy on Op OLYMPICS as the Military Contingency Force (MCF). They covered themselves in glory throughout the exercises and, by the Opening Ceremony, had become a crack unit keeping us safe during the Olympics. Over the Olympic Summer, the Squadron either served on the MCF, carried out normal duties or took leave. By October all leave had been taken and the Squadron received horses back from grass again for the final effort in a marathon ceremonial year; the Autumn Escorts. Not one but two Escorts were conducted, with the latter being a Windsor Escort. Indonesia Escort was under command of the Life Guards Squadron in London, whilst I had the pleasure of conducting my first Windsor Escort and

LCpl Shutt having an intimate moment in the surf

all the nuances which it brings. Add to this the visit of Her Majesty The Queen to Combermere Barracks the day before, and we again find ourselves in an extremely busy period. With over 30 rehearsals and ten major parades under our belt, the Squadron is justifiably looking forward to well earned Christmas leave, and at the time of writing most horses are roughed off and looking woolly, somewhere in their brain they know they are about to run free in the fields of Melton Mowbray. There are always movements in and out of the Squadron and this year there have been many. With an influx of Troop Leaders we welcome Capt Rupert Hills, Ct Cameron Bacon and Ct Tom Maples, replacing Capt Billy Morley, currently driving the length of Africa, Capt Alex Owen (Adjutant BASTION, Afghanistan) and Capt Charlie Fitzroy. Capt John Rawdon-Mogg has stepped into the second-in-command position as Capt Simon Lukas has taken up Adjutant at HCR. Corporals Of Horse are in a constant rotation and we welcome

Sit forward when rearing

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 39


CoH Cowan, LCoH Onwubiko, LCpl Shutt and Tpr Duffy meeting The Queen

CsoH A Preston and J Elliott replacing CsoH M Privett and M Francis. Tpr Tonkin is still in Afghanistan on a 6 month secondment and we continue to wish him well. And finally we welcome Corporal Major

The Squadron Ranking Past HM The Queen in Windsor Castle

WO2 Selina into post and hope that he has a relaxed, fun and fulfilling tour at HCMR. The outgoing SCM, now WO2 (RQMC Main) M Ireland has been the rock around which this Squadron has had such success. He has handled the management of soldiers and horses in

a fluid, ever changing environment, and has provided me with the support and advice that I needed on a daily basis. We are all sorry to see him go and wish him all the luck for the coming few years.

Headquarters Squadron by Major DS Carter

E

very year on these pages you will read that the last year has been the busiest ever, but I challenge anyone to top events of this year. A normal State Ceremonial year coupled with the Diamond Jubilee celebrations and the Olympics being held on your doorstep was always going to be special. This extraordinary year started very much like any other for HQ Squadron: supporting the mounted squadrons during a split Christmas leave; then immediately assisting the Regiment prepare for the numerous inspections that take place prior to the start of the Ceremonial Season. The Commanding Officer’s inspection of Barracks raised a few points, causing many a headache for the QM, Capt Nick Stewart and his staff, and showed everyone just what high standards would be

expected in everything that we would do throughout the coming year. It was then the focus of the Riding Master, Capt Richard Chambers, that everyone was all too aware of, horses and riding skills being honed to the level required not only for the Major General’s Parade, but for the remainder of the year. In preparing for the Major General’s Inspection and the initial annual salvo of State Ceremonial Parades, including an early State Opening of Parliament, the Squadron on numerous occasions found itself spread very thinly. Through necessity, rehearsing in Windsor for the Pageant and London for the State Opening of Parliament on the same day was just another hurdle that needed to be negotiated. All were completed with the

Thumb on top Mr Brown

40 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

It must be “Silly Season”. The Staff Officers

LCoH Short with the Duke of Westminster following a Kit Ride Passout


The Comd Offr playing dead during TRYOUT

minimum of fuss and the professional approach that we are all so accustomed to from Household Cavalrymen. This was also commented on by those training our soldiers for Op ESCALIN over this period, our support to any possible tanker driver strike. The following couple of weeks saw participation from the Regiment and a notable contingent from HQ Sqn in: the Armed Forces Muster in Windsor; the Combined Cavalry Sunday Parade in Hyde Park; Staircase Parties at St Paul’s and Buckingham Palace; the Jubilee Sovereign’s Escort; the Thames Pageant Flotilla; and rehearsals for the Queens Birthday Parade. It will be of no surprise that all personnel were ultimately very relieved when the latter Parade was over and the Garter had been successfully completed. In any normal year, mid-June would grant us a two to three week period when the whole Regiment is able to relax slightly, conduct MATT’s training and prepare for Regimental training. This was done, but at a much reduced level due to over 100 men from across the three squadrons now being

LSgt Handley competing on Open Day

grouped together under command of Major Simon Deverell RHG/D, to form the Household Cavalry’s complement towards the Military Contingency Force for Op OLYMPICS. This seriously impacted on the availability of personnel to conduct mandatory training at this time and the training package was reduced until later in the year. It all impacted on Regimental Training, resulting in our stay in Norfolk being reduced from the customary three weeks to two. This was a real shame especially for SCpl Adams after all his planning, and when the STANTA staff had gone out of their way to accommodate us in West Tofts Camp, our usual home of Bodney Camp being unavailable due to operational training. West Tofts proved to be a success and with a few issues being addressed to make both water and electricity more accessible, it should make our stay there next year even more rewarding and enjoyable. The third week of available training time was not wasted, instead it was utilised to run a very well received Potential Non Commissioned Officers Course with all those on the course learning a great deal and showing their potential.

A typical HCMR morning Col RHG/D riding with the Comd Offr and RCM

HQ Squadron’s Tprs Cox, Darcy, Munoz-Hermosa and Setchell all did well, justifying why the chain of command had identified them as potential junior leaders of the future. On returning to Knightsbridge, another tough period was entered into, starting on the 20th July and not concluding until the 8th October, due to our support to the Olympics. The horses had returned from grass before the last of the leave had finished meaning that those remaining were again very busy. The last part of the year saw a State Ceremonial Escort in London and a move to Windsor en masse for a late Escort at the end of November. All personnel are looking forward to a well earned Christmas break after a full and very memorable year. Most Departments will contribute articles in the Household Cavalry Journal so I make mention of very few individuals, instead allowing them to elaborate on their own departments achievements. However, it would be remiss of me if I did not single out and congratulate those from the Squadron that were part of the MCF. Many of them having

I’ve not lost it, LCoH Halligan playing enemy for the PNCO Cadre

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 41


I’m not just a driver! Tpr Harrison on the PNCO Cadre

to change leave plans, some at the last moment, most spending long periods away from their families over the summer period but all proving that Household Cavalrymen are professional, committed and dedicated to any job they are asked to complete. The Squadron have said farewell to the following and wish them all the best in their future endeavours: Maj Anthony

(Tadge) Tate; Capt Mark Avison; WO2 Freeman; CoH Beaumont; LCpls Akorli, Bryant, Holland, Royston; and Tprs Corbett, Pinder and Shaw. Finally we would like to congratulate the following who have recently welcomed new members to their families: Capt & Mrs Rogers (Jack); LCoH & Mrs Waite (Callum) LCoH & Musn Tingley (Matthew).

Out for a duck! The Riding Master’s cricketing prowess exposed

Warrant Officers’ and Non-Commissioned Officers’ Mess

by WO1 (RCM) WD Brown

T

he New Year started with the State of the Nation Dinner. This was a formal affair with the Mess sitting down to a four course meal followed by port and the Commanding Officer’s speech. This was the first real opportunity of the year for the Commanding Officer to address the Mess as a whole. He impressed all by drinking a bottle and half of Champagne whilst delivering his speech and leading from the front. The Warrant Officers’ and Non Commissioned Officers’ Mess also started the New Year with a 3-0 win in the annual Officers & Tprs vs WOs & NCOs football match. Although the Officers had Troopers to help, they still couldn’t beat the might of the Mess. This had been a long time coming after the last two years of defeats. The spring season began with an invitation to the Major General to visit the Mess after his inspection of the Regiment. He spoke to every Mess member, giving some reassurance in these times of austerity. The State Opening of Parliament Sovereign’s Escort followed, with RHG/D SCM carrying the Standard. There was a well-attended lunch and tea in the Mess for soldiers and their families during the Diamond Jubilee Procession, all watching with horror as the Regimental Corporal Ma-

jor hung on for grim death whilst carrying the Standard down The Mall as The King’s Troop fired their salute from Horse Guards. The Household Cavalry Bands kept the Mess alive after a well-celebrated Queen’s Birthday Parade and the Mess did not close till the early hours of the morning. At Regimental Training, the Warrant Officers and Non Commissioned Officers challenged the Officers to a cricket match and a local brewery kindly donated the beer for the game. The Officers won this one again with the help of some troopers sealing the triumph. Generally the Mess hold a Ball annually; however, the tempo of regimental life through the summer meant the normal summer function could not go ahead. The autumn ball was organised by WO2 (SCM) Crighton RHG/D and his committee who worked hard to produce a fantastic and very enjoyable party. This year’s bands were of a very good standard, even inducing some questionable moves from the Garrison Sergeant Major on the dance-floor. Perhaps he should stick to the Parade Square. The WO’s and NCO’s Mess engaged with the community by taking part in the Big Curry Night in The Red Lion in

Barnes. The landlord and patrons were very hospitable laying on free food and a barrel of real ale. In return we donated a prize to his charity raffle which raised over £2000. The Mess also hosted a curry night for some of the 2003 England Rugby World Cup winners. This raised £10,000 for the Matt Hampson HAMBO foundation for people seriously injured through sport. The Mess said goodbye and good luck in civilian life to WO2 (Farrier Maj) Freeman and SCpl Bestwick when both handed in their jackboots after 22 years of service. Both members had varying careers between Windsor and Knightsbridge. We wish them well in civilian life. The Mess also said goodbye to W02 (RQMC) Fry MC LG on his posting and promotion to Regimental Corporal Major at the Household Cavalry Regiment and WO2 (SCM) Ireland, who leaves us after having served two years as The Blues and Royals Squadron Corporal Major. He will be a big loss to Mess life. He now takes his place as the RQMC HCR. WO2 (SCM) Salina has taken over as RHG/D SCM. Senior mess members are WO1 (RCM) WD Brown LG, WO1 (BM) Freeborn, WO2 (RQMC) B Gibson LG, WO2 (SCM)

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 43


Salina RHG/D, WO2 (SCM) C Walker RHG/D, WO2 (BCM) M Redman LG, WO2 (EWO) R Hackman RHG/D, WO2

M Peet LG, WO2 (RAWO) J Price AGC (SPS), WO2 (SCM) C Crighton RHG/D and WO2 (SCM) C Newell LG, WO2

(Farrier Major) Sherlock.

The Forge

by Farrier-Major Sherlock

A

fter the New Year’s leave period work in the Forge began very steadily, with the qualified members of the Forge preparing and practising for the up coming Cavalry Pairs shoeing competition. January saw the Class two hopefuls LSgt Newton and LCpl Dailly, depart for the ASF, DAC until May. February saw the appointment of a new Farrier Major, SCpl Sherlock and a sad farewell to WO2 Freeman who retired after twenty two years’ service. The annual Cavalry Pairs shoeing competition was held at Hyde Park Barracks on the 17th February 2012 and was organised to a high standard by CoH Woods. The competition welcomes both Army and civilian Farriers, testing their skills in traditional ‘roadster-type’ shoeing. The competition was highly competitive with 40 qualified and highly successful competition Farriers testing their skill and determination. Congratulations went to the winning civilian pair, Mr D. Bazin and Mr A.Reader-Smith, also to WO2 Black-Wood and CoH Hayden for winning the ‘Best Military Pair’. There was also a prize in the form of a bronze medal presented by the Master of the Worshipful Company of Farriers to FLCpl Hansen for the most improved military apprentice Farrier. The Forge ran a Farrier assessment in the same month with eight potential candidates competing for two available places in the Forge. The assessment was run over a one week period and ended with a theory and practical test. LCpl Harris RHG/D and Tpr Wade LG, were the successful candidates. Our newest members of the Forge then departed to the ASF DAC for the Basic Military Farriers course. We all knew 2012 was going to be a very busy year for the Regiment, so to start it all off the grass horses returned in February. An industrious few days saw all one hundred and fifty seven horses shod and ready to start their build-up programme for the forthcoming ceremonial season and Olympic year. The Regiment was given the chance to show its readiness before the busy ceremonial season in March with the regiment rehearsing for the Major General’s Parade, which included the annual entertainment of the RVO mounted on parade and showing her equitation skills. The parade passed without any mishaps

The Master of the Farriers Company presents FLCpl Hansen with a bronze medal

and the GOC was suitably impressed, and with a healthy Forge contingent, mounted in the saddle and on the newly commissioned Veterinary Aid Post. The Regiment were then straight into rehearsals in May for the State Opening of Parliament at Westminster, combined with the Diamond Jubilee Pageant. We travelled between Windsor and London for the State opening of Parliament and Diamond Jubilee pageant. A testing time for both men and horses, but as usual the regiment made it happen and to the high standard expected. The Farriers provided the main arena with a crash team, and were on hand and of great assistance with an unfortunate equine fatality. The horse fortunately was not a Household Cavalry member, but sadly belonged to the Kings Troop Royal Horse Artillery. The Pageant was a unique experience and I am not sure I will ever forget those Cossack girls and their feats of acrobatics! The Diamond Jubilee Pageant was new experience, showcasing an amazing cast of equine cultures and horses from around the world. The month of May saw the successful and welcome return of LCpl Harris RHG/D and Tpr Wade LG, after completing their BMFC at the ASF, DAC. The added manpower was greatly appreciated as the ceremonial tempo increased with each passing day along with increasing media interest. The horses returned to HCMR in preparation for the Diamond Jubilee escort

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on the 5th of June. The newly promoted Farrier Major, WO2 Sherlock and FLCpl Dailly rode as the Farriers on the escort with Tpr Munoz-Hermosa RHGD and FLCpl Bliss riding in the divisions, a memorable parade for all who took part. With four men riding on parade and the increased shoeing, all members of the Forge had to step it up a gear to ensure that the shoeing and turn out were kept to the same high standard. Despite all of the extra special events marking the Diamond Jubilee, some days still take pride of place in the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment’s calendar and so we pushed on to the Queens Birthday Parade, which took place on the 14th of June with the Forge providing four men mounted on the parade and a VAP crew. During this time the department also provided veterinary cover for the Beating the Retreat, with a full complement of emergency crash team members in the VAP. I am extremely proud to say that during all of the parades combined a grand total of one shoe was lost whilst on parade. One too many, but still, only one. This proved to me, as Farrier Major, the shop floor was working at its best whilst coping with all the other commitments. As usual the Forge had to complete the annual army training tests which were squeezed in to the programme. The Forge completed all ITD’s with their usual vigour prior to Regimental Training camp, which this year was held at West Tofts in Norfolk. Training Camp was a challenge this year; the Forge had


two qualified Farriers and two apprentices to deal with the Regiments shoeing. COH Woods and LCoH Tingley found themselves propelled in to the roles of stand in Farrier Major and second in command respectively, which brought new challenges that they met head on. The reduced department size stretched the Forge staff to the limit, but they got the job done with the high standard expected of them. The apprentices continued with their training with the qualified Farriers giving their welcome advice, whilst FCoH Woods trained for his AMFC in a temporary forge, not perfect, but workable. The equitation skills at camp were kept up to standard this year, with the RVO and Vet Tech both competing in the show jumping and the Regimental Grand Prix. The Vet Tech came third in the Squadron and Regimental six bar competition and competed at Royal Windsor horse show in the team show jumping, achieving ninth place out of forty one teams. July also saw five Forge members of staff removed from post intermittently for the Military Contingency Force duties for the Olympic Games. This commitment removed the Farriers from the Forge from July until Sept. A real eye opener was the visit to the Police riot training facilities in Gravesend. Top tip,

if there’s ever a riot, and LSgt Newton tells you to move, MOVE! The Olympics passed with great success, with duties consisting of event security and searching bags. Some of the men got to watch the occasional event when not on duty and it was a satisfying for all the Forge members involved to be part of this. A greater understanding of the soldering abilities of Forge members was also achieved and appreciated through this period by myself.

few days in order to get the horses shod and ready in time for the Regiments commitments. The horses were promptly shod and ready for exercise, although it will be another shoeing period until we see the feet back to the state we would like ideally; this was due to the feet breaking up at grass. Once men and horses had returned from leave the Regiment got back into the normal routine of preparing for the autumn ceremonial season, which includes two state visits.

The Olympic torch was reaching its final stages of the country-wide parade. Buckingham Palace to Hyde Park was the final leg that would be escorted by HCMR. The crowds were huge and daunting in their obsession of the torch. The new VAP became a battle bus of a sort and just managed to stay with the horses as they were mobbed by the crowds. The Veterinary Officer and CoH Howell dismounted to act as crowd control and, funnily enough, the crowds moved back! This typified the high tempo year we as a Regiment were experiencing, it was the most fraught parade of 2012!

October and November saw the Regiment prepare itself for the State Visit of the President of Indonesia, the Lord Major’s procession, the Festival of Remembrance and a Windsor escort for the Amir of Kuwait. After another couple of busy months the Forge will be glad to remove the horses’ shoes and wave them good bye for the Christmas grass rest period. A rest these horses thoroughly deserve after the busiest ceremonial season seen at HCMR.

September saw the return of the horses from grass and an interruption of leave for the soldier’s who were on the Op Olympics. These soldiers returned for a

A testing year for the Regiment and the Forge/Veterinary Department, and a lot to reflect on for all of us, but like all things testing you can look back and smile, and hold a little bit of pride knowing we did it well.

Riding Staff 2012

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n December 2011 the riding staff had five riders at the Service Show Jumping Championship, Olympia. Capt Avison and Lochnagar won the class for a third consecutive year, SCpl (now WO 2) Griffiths finished second and was awarded a saddle by the worshipful Company of Saddlers. Capt Chambers, SCpl Broom and CoH Scholes were also representing the regiment. This was to be Capt Avison’s last competition as Riding Master and indeed in the Army before moving on to pastures new. He handed over the post of Riding Master to Capt Chambers in February 2012. The year has seen a few changes in personnel and appointments; SCpl Griffiths, posted on promotion to the Defence Animal Centre in August left a chair opposite the Riding Master that needed filling, WO2 Hackman moved back up the M4 to answer the phone for the RM leaving room in Windsor for WO2 Nicholls to return to Regimental Duty to take up the post of Equitation Warrant Officer. SCpl Broom continues in his role at the HCTW and now has two instructors working directly to him; LCpl Miller and LCpl Bishop are currently cutting their teeth on the riding staff taking khaki rides. CoH Golder continues to work hard with the new remounts in Windsor under the direc-

tion of WO2 Nicholls and with some 50 remounts to get through this year they have their work cut out. Fortunately for them they have youth working with them, LCoH Glass, LCoH Heeley, LCpl Joyce and LCpl Hockey. The remaining members of the riding staff are working in Knightsbridge, LCoH Tate is working with the Riding Master to produce the Musical Ride for the upcoming British Military Tournament at Earls Court in December whilst LCoH McGrath continues to train the kit rides. It has been an unprecedented year as far as State Ceremonial Parades go. In the first half of the year the riding staff has had to produce and ride new horses for the HCMR on all the parades, Queens Birthday Parade, State Opening of Parliament, the Major Generals annual inspection, during a rehearsal for which, WO2 Hackman very nearly embarrassed himself when Churchill, a remount Drum Horse, had the Corporal Major reaching for his (missing) neck strap, as the young Churchill performed ‘airs above the ground’. The highest profile parade of the year, the Queens Diamond Jubilee Parade added to a busier than normal ‘silly season’. These all had their own small challenges, the most significant being the Diamond Jubilee Parade where not only did we have the crowds

to contend with but the additional complication of the Kings Troop firing a gun salute on Horse Guards as the Regiment was escorting Her Majesty up the Mall to Buckingham Palace. There are also two late Escorts at the end of the year the first commanded by LG leader, the second by RHG/D leader Major Simon Deverell. A short Regimental Training Camp, forced to move to a new location (West Tofts Camp) as Bodney Camp continues to be used for OPTAG, presented new challenges to which the staff rose with ease. No cross country course near by resulted in the portable fences being employed for a small schooling course but no competition. There were several other competitions held during the camp which saw the standard of rider improve as they went on. A regimental six bar competition allowed twenty horses to qualify for the open weekend, there was also the junior and senior/Officers show jumping competitions which again saw a well contested competition on the open weekend. The Royal Tournament was held in October, unusually late due to the Regiments commitments to the Olympics. This brings us full circle, as this goes to print once again five members of the

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staff are preparing their horses to jump in the Services Show Jumping Competition at Olympia: Capt Chambers, Riding Master (High Tide), WO2 Hackman (Mandrake), in his final competition before he completes his Colour Service, WO2 Nicholls (Zara), WO2 Griffiths (Dreadnought) and SCpl Broom on his own horse, One for You II. LCoH Glass

is currently first reserve and is ready to step up should anyone drop out. Good luck to all competitors, hopefully we will bring the trophy back to Hyde Park at the end of the night. And finally after twenty years of trying, WO2 Hackman was part of the winning team in the Services Team Jumping

competition held at the Royal Windsor Horse Show. SCpl Griffiths also popped his Windsor cherry. Capt Chambers’ inclusion in the team (after much debate between Hackman and Griffiths) meant that the Riding Master has been on the winning team three times, a fact which he continues to bore the staff with on any given opportunity.

Musical Ride

by Captain FH Hopkinson

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his has not been a particularly busy year for the Musical Ride due to the year’s Ceremonial commitments. Events undertaken comprised the Royal Norfolk Show, Regimental Open Weekend at West Tofts and the British Military Tournament. For the Norfolk show we were accommodated at Easton College, a 10 minute ride from the show ground. The College had recently undergone extensive renovations including a new yard for 30 horses which was ideally suited to looking after our horses and equipment and, rather than sleeping in a marquee, the boys were put up in single rooms; so both horses and men were well looked after. Our task was to perform twice a day for two days and then take part in the sundown finale on the final evening. Owing to the fact that this was almost entirely a new Ride from that which had performed the year before there were some slight creases to be ironed out on the first day, and so we rehearsed fu-

riously in the morning to get some of the excitement out of the horses before meeting the public. The performances went almost flawlessly with a couple of minor hiccoughs. The major coup was that our final performance was delayed 20 minutes and thus coincided with an aerial display plane. As the Ride burst into the arena to “Highway to the Danger Zone” the plane did a low level fly past over the horses as though choreographed which made for an even more spectacular sight. After this performance we were asked to perform an impromptu escort by the Show President Sir Nicholas Bacon to thank the show organiser Sarah de Chair for her unceasing contribution to the Show. This we duly did, escorting an open top car around the arena. Having completed the closing ceremony we boxed up and went to Regimental Training at West Tofts where the Musical Ride performed on the Household

Cavalry Mounted Regiment’s Open Weekend. Captain WFD Morley took over the responsibility of Ride Officer as it was his last week in the Army and his last opportunity to perform in front of his adoring public. The Ride also performed in the British Military Tournament (BMT) alongside a Mounted Band of The Life Guards and The Blues and Royals. This was our first performance indoors and the lights and the atmosphere created a very impressive show. This was further enhanced by the use of Xylobands for the first time illuminated to synchronise with the lights darkening which created a novel and striking effect. Owing to the fact that horses form HCMR both opened and closed the show the soldiers and musicians all worked extremely hard and continuously over the course of the five days. I commend and thank everyone involved for their professionalism and dedication to the performance.

Training Wing by Capt T W J Davie LG

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very day that I look out of the office window at the Household Cavalry’s Training Wing, based at the home of our sister Regiment in Windsor, I am struck by how vividly one is able to see Household Cavalrymen in the making. I have often thought that it is hard to completely understand the unique nature of a Household Cavalry soldier without having seen both sides of our coin but the parallels between the two are striking. It is not particularly unusual to see an ambulance pull up outside the riding school and paramedics ease a trainee onto a precautionary spinal board. Afghanistan is a dangerous and unpredictable place. Uncertainty and peril lurk in every ditch and every blemish in the road. It is hard for most soldiers to train for such a thing, but that is what, ultimately, occurs at the mounted training wing - the moulding of some of the finest soldiers in the British Army.

An infantry recruit is given a rifle to look after. It is an assembly of parts machined with microscopic accuracy that will produce the same result day in, day out, dependent on the trigger you pull or the button you push. Left to its own devices, it is an entirely inert bit of kit. Household Cavalry Phase 3 trainees, however, daily face nearly a ton of moody, free-thinking muscle. With metal plates fitted to its feet. A cavalry black is a complex fusion of nerves and blood that may appear docile and predictable, right up to the moment that it feels enough is enough, and dispatches its rider through the air until he lands winded and breathless on the tan. Sailing, unguided, through the air is an unnerving experience, as any Mounted Dutyman will tell you. Being strapped to a spinal board is similarly unsettling. The risks are all very real and failure is not an option. Welcome then, not to Pony Club Camp, but the first step in be-

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coming a true Household Cavalryman. It’s been a busy year, as ever for the ‘Wing’, we’ve seen nearly 100 trainees come and go having been introduced to such alien concepts as hocks, blue spray and PMR’s, all destined for the Mounted Regiment. Ride names have become increasingly exotic as more obscure battle honours have had their names dusted off and brought out of retirement. The battle of St Quentin Canal now enjoys unprecedented recognition at the Mounted Regiment. Staff turnover has been brisk and we have welcomed LC’soH Belasco, Neal, O’Leary and Stock as saddler and Ride NCOs respectively. We have also welcomed Cpls Maj Crighton and Nicholls as the Wing Warrant Officer and the Equitation Warrant Officer respectively. We have also waved goodbye to both LC’soH Hall and Barber who continue their instructional roles at Harrogate


and Pirbright, whilst Cpl Maj Hackman has lengthened his commute to Knightsbridge having, at some stage, covered every job here from trainee to OC! FCoH McCabe also made a brief cameo whilst taking time off from bending metal to have his bones bent back into shape instead.

behind the armoured Regiment’s tank sheds, the training wing is still home to hard work and a steep learning curve but it is from these things that the bonds between Household Cavalrymen are formed and are the first step in being part of ‘the best of both worlds’. Long may it continue.

In the shadow of Windsor Castle, and

The making of a Household Cavalryman

Winter Training Troop - 2011-2012

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he season started with a desire to change the way Winter Training had been run in the past and to try and improve the training value for the soldiers and mitigate injury to the horses. A number of changes were implemented. This season the Troop strove to implement B2 riding courses for troopers to allow them to reach a higher pay scale earlier and to prepare them for future courses in the equine side of the Regiment. Furthermore, the Troop formed earlier in the year so that the horses could have the requisite fitness training before Winter Training commenced properly. Fewer horses were taken up in order to allow for better management and so that fit horses would not have to return for the Autumn Escorts and run riot in the divisions. The main change was the focus of the Troop away from providing sport for officers and retired officers of the Household Division Saddle Club (HDSC) and instead emphasis trying to get soldiers to participate as it is they who are most deserving. This resulted in a rotation of

troops from Hyde Park Barracks every Wednesday so that they might get a week to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and the adrenalin filled riding. Whilst it was hard for the squadrons to release soldiers during the busier periods of the Autumn Escorts and the Christmas leave period there was some great success in this area and we managed to generate 164 man/days over the course of the season despite the long periods of frost. This season was the first to initiate a soldiers’ hunting diary of which this is an excerpt from one of the more appreciative troopers, Tpr Robinson LG: “I was so excited I had surges of adrenalin running through me. As we turned onto the field we were off. 100 Horses galloping across a field. It was amazing to be a part of ... I jumped a gate which I led 3 people over and I was congratulated. I was so pleased with myself and proud. I absolutely loved every second off it. It was the best thing I have ever done on a horse and I have asked if I could come up on my leave to do some more it was that enjoyable ... If there is any chance I could do any more I would jump at the chance to do it again. I loved it so much”

Equally, Tpr Grossman LG wrote: “We came towards the first jump straight away and I fell off and then Holkham kicked me in the head. I ran after him and then got back on and then he immediately bucked and I fell off again and he carried on without me and jumped the next jump on his own!” The culmination of the season was the HDSC Cross Country Ride. Stephen Rayns kindly allowed us to create the course around his farm as it has been for a number of years now at Ivy House Farm, Twyford. Strange then that Stephen’s girlfriend won the Open Class despite falling off and remounting and that Captain Morley, the previous OC WTT won the serving Household Division Class! This of course was followed by the Grooms’ Dinner in the Black Horse in Grimston followed by the obligatory pub crawl to Tubes nightclub. In all a very successful season but it is the Commanding Officer’s intention that even more soldiers get the opportunity next season and it is the Troop’s mission to facilitate that.

AGC (SPS) Detachment

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ue to the amount of events staged in London this year, 2012 has been a busy year for the SPS detachment (like all areas) at HCMR. The Det is a small one, established for eleven soldiers and one Officer supporting 400 personnel. On the social side the year really “shoved off” for four detachment members in March this year when LCpl

Haigh organised and entered a team into the Corps Ski meet in Neustift, Austria. All four team members had done very little or no skiing prior to the event but returned in high spirits albeit a little battered and bruised. Sgt Hood organised a Burns Night supper that was very well received by the 60 or so guests from around London District and HCR. Several Det members are currently in the

process of learning to ride and whilst there are no budding Cavalry members amongst us it would be remiss not to take the opportunities that this unique Regiment has to offer. The painstaking task of ensuring that the accreditation of all personnel required on OP OLYMPICS started in early April with several HR specialists

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ensuring that the Regiment stayed on top of the ever changing admin and political requirements. LSgt Sintim-Aboagye provided the rear base support and could occasionally be found out on the ground. In April Pte Cowans deployed to Canada with B Sqn HCR, thoroughly enjoying her first time on exercise and providing some insight into the “Green army”. LCpl Haigh also paid a flying visit to Canada and earned some valuable lessons about the role of Sqn HR if not deploying onto the prairie. In May the team of WO2 Price, LSgt Sessing, LSgt Thapa-Magar and LCpl Haigh completed the annual AGC 12 mile March and shoot competition at Worthy Down in blistering heat finishing a creditable position. At the time of writing LCpl Marshall and Pte Cowans are enjoying their

moment in the public eye as they form part of the London District SPS Marching contingent for the Cenotaph Parade, something of an honour and privilege. From a sporting perspective, WO2 Price was part of the South East District team that won the Army Golf District Championships and Sgt Sessing an integral member of the AGC Basketball team that captured the Army Inter-Corp Championships. There has been a lot of churn, and, at times, gapping of personnel within the Det this year. We have said good bye to several personalities; Sgt Odisseos-Nilsson (23 Engr Regt), Sgt Hood (British Embassy Yemen), LSgt Thapa-Magar (4 Scots) and LSgt Sintim Aboagye (1 RTR). By the time this goes to print we will also have lost the RAO Maj Dansey

(ICSC), Sgt Sessing (29 EOD Gp), LSgt Daveta on maternity leave and LCpl Marshall, we wish them all the best for the future, particularly LCpl Marshall as he makes his way in civilian life. Fortunately we have had some replacements in the form of Sgt Shackleton, and LSgt Drake with Capt Sargent, Pte Singh and LSgt Jarvis soon to arrive. It has been a successful year in terms of promotions; Sgt Hood has been promoted to SSgt on assignment, LSgt Sessing promoted to Sgt in situ, the RAO, Capt Dansey promoted to Major and the RAWO, WO2 Price selected for commissioning. All in all, a turbulent, busy, but ultimately rewarding year for all detachment members in this unique Regiment.

Chaplaincy

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ike the rest of the Army, this year was one of change. The key personnel of the triangle of pastoral care at Hyde Park Barracks (Welfare, Medical and Chaplaincy) were all reassigned. The Chaplain, the Revd Dr William Beaver, was whisked off to Wellington Barracks and Surgeon Major William Wall left for Africa and Canada. That left CoH David Young, Senior Welfare NCO, to hold up the Welfare end of pastoral care. Whilst in post, he worked closely with the CO HCMR to transform the Welfare Office into the Captain Chris Sayer Suite, now generally acknowledged to be one of the best equipped welfare facilities in the Army with its formal and informal meeting and office accommodation. It was formally opened by HRH The Princess Royal on 19 October 2011 in the presence of Mrs Brenda Sayer, her sons

and their families. CoH Young’s sterling service was recognised by the award of a commendation by Commander Land Forces, General Nick Parker, and promotion to Corporal Major and Senior Welfare NCO Bulford Garrison. Meanwhile, with Padre Beaver’s departure, the Chaplain for the whole Household Cavalry, the Revd (Maj) Nigel Kinsella, became the Mounted Regiment’s hands-on chaplain and Mrs Caroline Lee and CoH John Brophy arrived to carry on the many duties assigned to the Welfare Office. With Padre Kinsella’s forthcoming assignment to Afghanistan, Padre Beaver rejoins the Regiment and working closely with the Welfare team

and Surgeon Colonel Jedge Lewin, the triangle of pastoral care is firmly restored, available 24-7, an effective and efficient support for everyone in the Mounted Regiment and their families.

The compassionate and resolute CoH Young

The Band of The Life Guards by Major P C Wilman, Director of Music

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his year has been one of the busiest and most enjoyable years the Band has ever had. It started with some snowy fun in Andorra with TMaj West organising a trip to the largest skiing area in the Pyrenees. With the help of our instructors, Sgt Jenkins from the RAF and CSgt Simmonds from the Scots Guards Band, we spent our long and physically demanding days working hard on completing skiing foundation courses one and two. The evenings were a chance to let our muscles relax and take in the scenery of the local town of Pas de la Casa. A great time was had by everyone, especially Musn David Clarke who celebrated his 22nd birthday by hurtling down the mountain dressed as a Teletubby!

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The band escorting the Queen’s Life Guard at Horse Guards, April 2012


been invited to take part in the Modena International Military Tattoo. Modena is an ancient historical town in northern Italy made famous for being the home of Ferrari and having a strong tradition of producing some of the world’s finest balsamic vinegar. The 21st Tattoo featured acts from all over the world, including the mounted band of the Italian Fanfara del 4 Reggimento dei Carrabinieri, the German Army Band of the City of Ulm and the Royal Malaysia Police Central Band. We carefully put together a marching display in the build up to the tour, which featured some crowd pleasing favourites such as Lord of The Dance and Colonel Bogey.

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant, Windsor May 2012

The mounted year began with the Major General’s Parade in Hyde Park; this gives musicians the opportunity to hone their skills in playing musical instruments on horseback whilst maintaining their horsemanship proficiency. Once the combination of these skills is up to the required standard, the Band is then ready to tackle mounted duties for the year. The beginning of these duties saw the Band escort the Queen’s Life Guard down to Horse Guards Parade for the daily guard change. One of the biggest weeks in the calendar came in May. We set up our stables in the grounds of Windsor Castle and prepared ourselves for The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant. This event saw over 500 horses and 1000 dancers from all over the world pay tribute to Her Majesty’s 60 year reign.

Birthday Parade, the Beating Retreat was also a very special occasion. The band was lucky enough to be joined by performers from the War Horse theatre show and The Royal Cavalry of Oman. The spectacular addition of fireworks to Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture made this year one to remember. Our final involvement in The Jubilee celebrations saw us take part in an enormous procession through the streets of London. The Massed Bands of the Household Cavalry preceded the Sovereign’s Escort Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment for what was an impressive parade. Hundreds of thousands of people lined the streets to witness this amazing occasion. The Band were lucky enough to have

This summer saw the nation’s attention firmly fixed towards The 2012 Olympic Games. Naturally, with Horse Guards Parade being the home of the Olympic beach volleyball, we were chosen to open one of the day’s main competitions. We also travelled to Woolwich to play a selection of popular tunes for those in attendance at the shooting events. It was extremely exciting and a once in a lifetime opportunity for all members of the band to be involved in both aspects of these brilliant Olympic Games. Occasionally, the Band has the opportunity to travel the country and perform public concerts. One of these opportunities came in September at The Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham. The Royal British Legion Gala Concert, featured the Band and the Eastwood Collieries Male Voice Choir and was organised to raise money for this very worthy cause. We also had the pleasure

Another special element of a Household Cavalry band is the Trumpet team; under the instruction of TMaj West, our trumpeters have also been very active this year. Some of the highlights include the State Opening of Parliament, the Olympic Torch Relay, fanfares at Mansion House and the parade for our Olympic Heroes. A very special concert was held at Lloyds of London in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital. This event premiered a new work by Howard Goodall specifically featuring our own Cavalry Trumpets. Supported by The Royal College of Music, this magnificent evening featured a champagne reception and a programme of music for orchestra, choir and organ. Four of our State Trumpeters also played a major part aboard the Gloriana during the Diamond Jubilee River Pageant. Away from the Jubilee celebrations, May and June are usually our most hectic months of the year. As well as carrying out our rehearsals for the Queen’s

The Trumpeters on Gloriana

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The Opening of the Enzo Ferrari Museum in Modena, Italy, July 2012

of performing a ‘Last Night the Proms’ concert for the people of Dereham, Norfolk at their spectacular venue, the Dereham Memorial Hall. This event not only raised hundreds of pounds for Help for Heroes and The Light Dragoons Colonel’s Appeal, but was also a highly enjoyable evening. Finally, we are delighted to welcome new additions to the band. The following personnel were successful in passing the five month Household Cavalry

Mounted Dutyman Course: CoH Ballard, LCpl Heywood, Musns Diggle, Dolor, Kitchen, Marshall and Codd. They have all settled in extremely well. We also saw the return of LCoH Hinchliffe from The Light Cavalry Band, and have had our lower brass ranks boosted with CoH Birkett on euphonium and Musn Evans on bass trombone. As we reflect on the last twelve months, we can all look back on the fond memories created by this unique and action

Olympic Beach Volleyball at Horse Guards

packed year. It really will go down in history as being one of the Band’s most extraordinary and prestigious years for decades. Nothing can be more satisfying than wearing our iconic uniforms on horseback and looking at the pleasure it brings to so many faces in the crowd.

HM The Queen’s Jubilee River Boat Pageant - 3 June 2012 by Major PC Wilman, Director of Music

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tate Trumpeters from The Band of The Life Guards were tasked earlier in the year to sail aboard the splendid 94 ft Royal Rowbarge, ‘Gloriana’, to perform fanfares as the Pageant made its way from Chelsea to Greenwich along the River Thames. ‘Gloriana’ was the lead vessel of the Pageant and was commissioned by Lord Stirling for HM The Queens Diamond Jubilee celebrations. It was rowed by 18 oarsmen in support of ‘Mobility’, with rowers from all walks of life that had suffered some kind of physical disability, and some rowing champions. Three Servicemen, Will Dixon, Rory MacKenzie and Neil Heritage who lost limbs in Iraq and Afghanistan were invited to row. Alongside them, to give rowing support were the revered Olympic rowers, Sir Steve Redgrave and Sir Matthew Pinsent. Also guests aboard the vessel that day were representatives from the Police and Fire Brigade who had been seriously injured in carrying out their duties. Clare Balding and her team from the BBC were there to capture live shots throughout the procession and carry out interviews of those participating. On the day we left Knightsbridge dressed early on Sunday morning to

The State Trumpeters and Director of Music at work on Gloriana

meet up with the team at Chelsea Harbour. We had some breakfast, met the rowers and some of the special guests on board that day. The usual photograph calls were made and then we were set. We walked a short way to take our position on the Gloriana passing our way through throngs of cheering crowds. Whilst the weather was not

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at its finest, the crowds, however, were full of enthusiastic cheer – the buzz was amazing and we all knew this was going to be a day to remember. Once we boarded, we were lucky to meet several distinguished guests before we set sail. Lord Stirling invited CDS and CGS on board as well as the Mayor


of London, Boris Johnson and former Prime Minister, John Major. All were most impressed at the intricate design of this fine rowbarge and were all clearly looking forward to this unique event. Off we went – travelling down the river towards the Royal Barge and beyond. The Trumpeters were asked to play a fanfare at a few of the bridges, but the determination of the cheering

crowds, coupled with the enormous thrilling occasion had them play almost continuously for the whole journey. Placed in position at the stern, the Trumpeters heralded the Royal Salute as we passed Her Majesty The Queen – a fitting and memorable moment for us all. We continued as the rain began to fall, but the crowds grew bigger as we approached Tower Bridge and the cheering was relentless.

This was truly a magnificent experience for us all. Captured in almost every newspaper around the world the next day, ‘Gloriana’ was pictured leading the procession of 1000 vessels. There are many moments in a musician’s career that are memorable, but after 28 years of service, I can honestly say that this was one of the best – honoured and privileged indeed!

The Diamond Jubilee Carriage Procession by Captain TWJ Davie LG

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he Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment is accustomed to taking part in once-in-a-generation events. The Royal Wedding of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge last year was a good example, and 2012 brought us another in the form of Her Majesty The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Once again we were to join together with elements from across the Household Division and the Armed Forces to deliver a national spectacle. Despite the relatively short period between the Wedding and the Jubilee, and the plethora of ‘routine’ ceremonial events in between, we had welcomed many new soldiers and horses into the Regiment in the interim. Amongst others a new Riding Master was given the challenge of preparing us for the day. Coming in the middle of one of the busiest ceremonial periods for many years, rehearsals and parades came thick and fast. Only a day stood between the Early Morning Rehearsals of the Queen’s Birthday Parade and the Diamond Jubilee Carriage Procession. Bleary-eyed soldiers gathered, mounted, on the square in the dark of the small hours to ask each other “which parade are we doing today?”

The Escort forms up for the Early Morning Rehearsal

hour lull ensued before the unique occasion. Rain threatened and then poured in the interim. On the day, patches of blue sky were few and far between as we mounted at Hyde Park Barracks to do our duty.

The Early Morning Rehearsal for the Carriage Procession, however, was particularly atmospheric. We gathered outside the Palace of Westminster in a stillness unfamiliar to Parliament Square. The jingling of bright chains and the champing of bits punctuated the quietness. As Big Ben struck five times, the sound resonated down Whitehall in a manner reminiscent of Remembrance Sunday, reminding us of the dignity of the occasion we were rehearsing for and its exceptional circumstances.

The nation had descended on London and was out in force in an immense display of celebration and loyalty. We took up our places outside the Houses of Parliament and waited for Her Majesty to emerge into the jostling, jubilant crowds. Soon enough, The Queen came into view, accompanied by the Field Officer of the Escort and the Escort Commander and we set off down Whitehall. Over a hundred years ago, Queen Victoria captured the mood at her Diamond Jubilee Procession: ‘The cheering was quite deafening, and every face seemed to be filled with real joy.’ Such words could not have captured Queen Elizabeth II’s Procession more perfectly.

Having put the Carriage Procession to one side over the weekend, we completed the Major General’s Rehearsal of the Queen’s Birthday Parade and a 48-

In an echo of the Royal Wedding preparations, members of the Regiment had been used as flag-waving and cheering ‘crowds’ in Hyde Park to try to prepare

our horses for the anticipated noise. However, nothing could replicate the deafening discharge of the 60-gun salute fired by The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery from Horse Guards Parade. As the first gun fired, 120 horses collectively jumped up and sideways, nearly unseating many in the procession. This was repeated every 15 seconds for the duration of the escort, and in hindsight, we were extremely lucky not to lose any of our riders. The record for the quickest escort ever must have been broken as our soldiers, familiar with the sound of ordnance on operations, fought to contain anxious horses who were not

The Queen’s carriage rounding Queen’s Gardens

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 51


The Sovereign’s Escort forms up at Buckingham Palace

so accustomed to ‘riding to the sound of the guns’. We squeezed through Admiralty Arch and an enormous roar broke out from the crowd as we emerged onto the Mall; Foot Guards in vivid red, under the gold braid and colour of the union flags draped along its length. As we trotted by with Her Majesty, excited crowds cheered and waved flags and then again, with renewed fervour for the carriage of Princes William and Harry.

The RCM calls for three cheers for Her Majesty The Queen

We arrived at Buckingham Palace and formed up in the forecourt as Her Majesty and Their Royal Highnesses were delivered safely inside. Horses blew heavily and soldiers breathed quiet sighs of relief at completing another proud chapter of Regimental history in the style which both Her Majesty and the nation expect. The Regiment moved off and turned left to move up Constitution Hill and, with the Procession barely over, minds were already turning to the Colonel’s Review. Back at the Barracks

The Queen’s message of thanks

52 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

and behind closed doors the Regimental Corporal Major ordered the Regiment to remove headdress as we gave a hearty three cheers to our Colonel-in-Chief. Whilst we all take immense pride in defending our nation in times of conflict, we are just as proud of our ceremonial role in times of peace. The exceptionally high regard in which the Regiment holds Her Majesty The Queen made celebrating her Diamond Jubilee in this way a unique privilege for us all.

The letter from the Major General expressing his gratitude and admiration


Spruce Meadows 2012 by Captain AGR Owen RHG/D

W

hen six Household Cavalry Troopers competed in the Richmond Cup Competition, working tirelessly through two weeks to bring their kit to an inhuman perfection, they probably didn’t realise how worth while it was. Many will be aware of the great prestige of riding as the retinue party on the Queen’s Birthday Parade, and meeting Her Majesty at the Windsor Horse Show. However, less well known is the fact that the top three Troopers from the competition get to travel to Canada later in the summer to represent the Regiment at the Spruce Meadows International Masters Tournament. This year the Regiment’s Media Officer, Captain A G R Owen RHG/D, took a crack team of overachievers to Calgary. For services to Saddlery LCoH Belasco was chosen to take his skills across the pond. LCpl Glass was hand picked by the Riding Master for his excellent year on the Staff, and Troopers Day, Attakorah and Fisher made the backbone of the team as this year’s Richmond Cup finalists. Ron and Marg Southern, the founders of Spruce Meadows, have been flying members of the Household Cavalry and King’s Troop out to Canada since 1982. This year was not only the 30th anniversary of this great relationship, but also the Diamond Jubilee themed Masters

with more union flags, pictures of Her Majesty, British National Anthems and jugs of Pimms than anywhere else in North America. While Spruce Meadows is a massive reward for all that attend, it is by no means an easy tasking. The team arrived to receive four Canadian show jumping horses in various hues of brown. Despite constant exercise these incredibly fit and energetic steeds often gave the boys a ride fit for the Calgary Stampede. However, in true cavalry style, it was not long before the Household Cavalry was cantering around the packed international arena behind a victorious Robert Whittaker in immaculately dressedoff half sections. As the week of competitions ramped up toward the weekend and the big prize money, the days became increasingly manic. Each man had to turn himself out up to six times a day in full state kit. With this turn over and the prairie heat flirting with 30 degree highs, it became an endurance test and a reminder of days on Kit Ride. Happily, throughout the week there were always little entertainments to look forward to such as BBQs with the competitors. These encounters with female members of Team USA served to impress on the men just how white and tight a pair of jodhpurs can actually be.

Capt Owen presenting a whip to Tom Heathcott

The men acquitted themselves with enthusiasm, if not skill, at the mothership of linedancing bars; Ranchman’s. Following the lead of the Jamaican bobsled team of 1988, the Household Cavalry, King’s Troop, Lord Strathcona’s Horse and a wealth of riders descended on the dance floor of this legendary cowboy bar for some serious two-stepping and heel flicking action. The

Tpr Fisher on duty for his public

Gentleman Soldiers of the Household Cavalry were instantly recognisable by their collared shirts, tweed jackets and mixture of cowboy boots and deck shoes. It brought a tear of pride to the eye of the author. All the hard work during the Masters was rewarded with a week of challenge pursuits up in the Rocky Mountains. Nestled in scenic Banff, the men made forays across the Provincial border into B.C. to sample quad biking and white water rafter in the Kicking Horse river valley. Tpr Fisher, despite wearing the crossed swords of a PTI, lost his manhood after a dip in the glacial water and had to spend at least four hours in the hotel hot tub to regain his bravado. After two weeks in Canada the team leader was struggling to prevent his men from going AWOL and absconding in the colonies. It truly was the experience of a lifetime and fully worth the efforts on the Richmond Competition for a place on the team.

Sponsored Ceremonial Equipment Clean

4th Brownhills and 3rd Walsall Wood Guides & Brownies

C

ommunity Engagement took on a different hew when we had a large visit of Brownies and Guides from Birmingham who raised money through sponsored cleaning of State Kit. We had received an approach from Clare, Leader - 4th Brownhills (Methodist) Guides.

A letter and photographs were received after the visit.

kind trooper that delivered our additional horseshoes?

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the regimental cloth badges you so kindly sent us. I also trust our card arrived safely with you for the very

Thanking you once again for all the help and support you have offered us all both before, during and after our memorable visit to the Household Cavalry. You truly

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 53


ensured we experienced a ‘once in a life time experience’. I’m writing to advise you that we believe we have now collected in all our sponsor money. The total amount raised by ourselves is £2736.52, which is to be split as follows: 60% = The Household Cavalry Central Charitable Fund (£1641.91)

40% = Help for Heroes (£1094.61) I enclose some photographs of the day. We all loved it. The photographs show the group outside No 10 Downing Street, cleaning cuirasses, and presenting Capt Roly Spiller with a ring for auction by the Casualty Fund, and a close-up of this prize.

Home Headquarters Household Cavalry – There’s no place like Home HQ by Maj (Retd) PF Stretton formerly The Blues and Royals

H

ome Headquarters for Cavalry regiments were established in the later 1950s at the time when regiments were allocated geographic recruiting areas. In many cases these areas were a formal expression of previous county and territorial ties and the establishment of a permanent Home HQ was therefore an important symbol of the relationship between the regiment and its recruiting area. As the Household Cavalry recruits from across the UK and Commonwealth it is understandable that it’s Home HQ should be based in Windsor, its traditional home. Home HQ is located in Combermere Barracks adjacent to RHQ HCR. Although the organisation of Home HQ varies in detail between the cavalry regiments according to local circumstances, all are established (although not necessarily manned) with Retired Officers, the Regimental Secretary and Assistant Regimental Secretary, a Chief Clerk, an Assistant Clerk and additionally the Museum Assistant, who are all funded by the MoD Civil Service. The Regi-

The Home HQ Team (L-R) Capt Dick Hennessy-Walsh, Mrs Diane Hennessy-Walsh, Maj Paul Stretton

mental Secretaries also act as Honorary Secretaries for either The Life Guards or The Blues and Royals Associations and are directed by HQ Household Cavalry at Horse Guards.

54 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

The staff at Home HQ are: Major Paul Stretton (Honorary Secretary The Blues and Royals) who served with The Blues and Royals for


35 years 1970-2005. Captain Richard Hennessy-Walsh (Honorary Secretary The Life Guards Association) who served with The Life Guards for 32 years between 1965 -1997. Mrs Diane Hennessy-Walsh (Chief Clerk Home HQ) who is the wife of Captain Hennessy-Walsh. Mr John Lloyd (Museum Assistant) who served with The Life Guards for 27 years,1962-1989 completing his service as WO1. They have at least 130 years of combined service with the Household Cavalry and MoD between the four of them! With over 4,500 active members of the two Regimental Associations, the three members of office staff are kept busy ensuring the aims of the Associations’ are met by providing benevolence, (in the main to veterans) and maintaining contact with HCR, HCMR, those that have served and the general public. A large number of members will have noticed that their contact with the Regiment and Household Cavalry in general, has increased over the last several years as Home HQ has utilised the internet to provide timely messaging with members that have an e-mail facility; this started with about 1,000 addresses and now has almost 2,000 recipients of regular information from Windsor. Home HQ provides notifications on the passing of those that have served in the Regiments, information about the Regiment, forecasts of events that may be of interest for the Associations memberships, Veterans issues and employment opportunities for those that wish to be kept informed. Home HQ have offered over 4,000 employment opportunities, drawn from 80 employment agency newsletters looking for ex-military applicants as well as private employers specifically seeking the skills and reputation of ex-Household Cavalrymen during 2012. It is hoped that this contact with the Association’s membership has helped to re-establish the connections between those that are proud of their former service and their colleagues. Once a Household Cavalryman always a Household Cavalryman. The use of e-mail and social network sites has allowed the quick and timely passage of information throughout the Associations’. The deaths of members are sad occasions, however, they do give the opportunity for their former colleagues to attend funerals to pay their respects. I know that this has been particularly appreciated by families who are often unaware of the military service of their deceased loved one. They are often surprised to find “men

with bearing, suits, blue/red/blue ties and always shiny shoes” at the back of churches and crematoriums, on occasions not knowing the deceased other than that he was a member of the Regiment. Where possible a regimental wreath, the regimental Collect and advice will be provided to families by Home HQ. The Association Secretaries with the respective Committees organise an Annual Dinner either in Windsor or at Hyde Park Barracks for all Association members including officers and soldiers serving with the Household Cavalry. With escalating costs for food and service, commitments for both HCR and HCMR, members expectations and a limit of between 200-300 seats, this is far from simple and keeps both Secretaries well occupied for a number of months. Members have access to Association Christmas Cards which it is hoped are both exclusive and appreciated: however, this depends upon the images available, cost and licensing restrictions. Between 12,000 and 15,000 cards are produced by each Association and the sales income goes someway to offsetting the expenditure of the Annual Dinner, which is invariably subsidised by the Association.

HRH The Duke of York likes Maj Stretton’s Combined Cavalry polyester tie at the Cavalry Memorial Parade 2012

Both Secretaries have additional tasks. Maj Stretton has been the Chairman of the Combined Cavalry Old Comrades Association (CCOCA) between 2008-2012, responsible for organising and executing the annual Cavalry Memorial Service and Parade in Hyde Park. He is also the Deputy Director of the Household Cavalry Museum Ar-

chive located in Combermere Barracks. Capt Hennessy-Walsh is also the Secretary of the Guards Golfing Society. Besides Home HQ acquiring and distributing tickets for Queens Birthday Parade and the Cavalry Memorial Parade, it also holds, updates and controls a contact database of all members of the Association that have submitted their contact details. These details are never passed without an individual’s permission. The creation of the Household Cavalry Foundation (HCF) should allow better communication of Household Cavalry matters between members of the Associations however, for clarification it will not interfere with the welfare, benevolence work, use of funds and distribution of grants in aid from either of the Regimental Associations. In summary, Home HQ provides the continued link for advice and assistance between the serving Regiments and those that have served in The Life Guards, The Royal Horse Guards (The Blues), the 1st Royal Dragoons or The Blues and Royals. If you require any advice or assistance with: • • • • •

Veterans issues. Welfare Assistance. The Household Cavalry. The Regimental Associations. Contacting those you may have served with. • Events of interest to the Household Cavalry and Associations. • Use of Household Cavalry badges or ciphers (they are all copyrighted and controlled). Please keep your contact details up to date with Home HQ. Contact either the appropriate Honorary Secretary or the Home HQ General Office, the contact details for which are given on the information page of the Household Cavalry Journal.

Capt Hennessy-Walsh in his made to measure (snug) office in Combermere Barracks

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 55


Images of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

The Jubilee escort coming down The Mall

Jubilee Parade inspection in Barracks

The Flypast over a packed Queen’s Gardens

The Queen’s carriage reaching the end of The Mall

The Field Officer, Lt Col Hughes, begins the move back to Barracks

56 ■ Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment

The Escort enters The Forecourt

The little drummer boy, Master Wenham, son of saddler LCoH Wenham


The Massed Mounted Band Beating Retreat

The full Beating Retreat cast

Followed by the Staircase Party for the West Steps of St George’s Chapel The streetliners for the Garter Service march into position

The Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall and Duke and Duchess of Cambridge go back up the hill A painting of The Queen’s Life Guard in the snow

Lt Morley’s Division on the march

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police carrying out a Queen’s Life Guard duty

Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment ■ 57


Household Cavalry Sports Round-up I

t is fitting that in London’s ‘Olympic Year’, we as a Regiment have been busy on all forms of pitch, course and track. Some of the particular highlights have been the Royal Armoured Corps Cricket Club tour to India, the Household Cavalry crew effort sailing at Cowes Week and the excellent results achieved by the Nordic Ski team in the beginning of the year. Enormous efforts have been put in across the board with

some spectacular success demonstrated. It’s not all about competition though and the Regiment’s swimming team, under the leadership of Corporal Major Aston, worked especially hard to raise a small fortune for the Household Cavalry Central Charitable fund.

Canada, on Op OLYMPICS and, of course, preparing for Op HERRICK 18. Fitting in the same amount next year, around the deployment, is the challenge, and the winter sports teams have already departed and we look forward to seeing what might be accomplished by the New Year.

The Regiment took part in a lot of competitions whilst very busy in

HMCR Football Tour 2012 by Captain F H Hopkinson LG

O

n the 19th September 2012 a squad of 20 Household Cavalrymen embarked on their voyage to the New World with great trepidation in order to do battle not only on third generation astro-turf but also in the drinking holes of Los Angeles and its surrounding conurbations. After an 11 hour flight, the team was greeted in the airport by Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) detectives Scott Burkett and Hugo Cepeida. They kindly shuttled the team to the Dollar rental company where the squad managed to pick up, after a little bartering, a fleet of Dodge Caravans and then set out for what was to become the Household Cavalry’s sanctuary for the next 10 days; the Redondo Beach Best Western Plus. Ideally situated about a five minute walk from the beach and within spitting distance of Fatburger, a restaurant whose eponymous foodstuffs were indeed highly calorific, we set about recovering from the flight and familiarising ourselves with our surroundings and the locals. Day 2 was spent on the beach playing football, swimming and getting sunburnt in a typically British way. Scott kindly brought some surf boards down and we attempted to learn with guidance from Scott, although the waves were somewhat unforgiving and it looked at times like a drowning competition. On Friday Scott again indulged us by taking the team to Venice Beach in order to soak up the atmosphere and see some of the sights. By chance the Space Shuttle Endeavour was making its last flight to LAX and circled overhead before making its final descent. It was an extraordinary sight. Other excitements that day included bumping into Olly Murs, the X Factor finalist filming his video for the American version of his most recent single before meeting up with the manager of the Hollywood Allstars, Jack

The Teams

Sibajene, in a bar called the Whaler by Venice Pier. The team headed for San Diego early on Saturday morning for the first match against the San Diego Harbour Police (SDHP). The pitch was at Cathedral High School on the outskirts of the city. Under the considerable experience and skill of Cpl Maj P Ireland and the youthful exuberance and physicality of LCpl Shutt, the team despatched a mediocre side 16-0. The SDHP’s one attempt on the away side’s goal was a speculative shot from kick-off that had CoH Young frantically back pedalling only to see the ball bounce off the cross bar. Other highlights included Tpr Holland’s inability to take a throw in. After the match we headed into central San Diego for a chance to soak up some culture in the Gas Lamp District and saw the USS Midway and other aircraft carriers in the harbour before consuming delicious seafood in Top of the Market, a restaurant overlooking the bay.

58 ■ Household Cavalry Sports Round-up

Six Flags Magic Mountain Roller Coaster Park in Santa Clarita was the next stop on the Tour. With some of the tallest, fastest and most vomit inducing roller coasters in the world, Tpr Baker was in his element hyperventilating and yelling expletives throughout. One of the most unexpected highlights of the trip was heading to the House of Blues to see a glam rock band called Steel Panther. Scott had managed to organise VIP tickets to the gig on Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood, and the band’s interaction with the crowd and the sheer energy of the performance was scintillating. Tuesday saw the match against the Hollywood Allstars abandoned due to the state of the pitch which had broken glass and large pot holes over much of the surface. This was a huge disappointment as we had driven for two and a half hours through the infamous Los Angeles traffic to play. The Allstars, in recompense for the state of the pitch, took us to Ye


Compton. This was followed by a night out on Hollywood Boulevard. The next match was against the LAPD again at a Cathedral High School only this time in down town LA. The pitch was an American football field with a stunning back drop of the sky scrapers of the city centre. This proved to be a much tougher challenge and our lack of match time showed as we were undone by a few clumsy back passes and over eagerness. The game was much closer than the 5-1 score line would suggest. The LAPD started strongly but towards the end of the second half it was HCMR that were in the ascendancy.

Outside the Police Academy

Olde King’s Head, Studio City, for a few British Ales. Hugo Cepeida kindly showed the team around the US Marshals Training Facility and the LAPD Academy on Wednesday. The US Marshals had a modern equivalent of our Dismounted

Close Combat Trainer (DCCT) with 360 degree video projection and scenarios including drug busts, a high school hostage situation and shoot outs with fugitives. Tprs Baker and Cooney showed remarkable aplomb in diffusing these situations with firepower and some firing positions last seen on the streets of

This was an extraordinary experience and a pleasure to be a part of. The team acquitted themselves with the panache expected of Household Cavalrymen. Without the help of the Army Sports Lottery, the Berlin Infantry Brigade Memorial Trust Fund and the Commanding Officer this Tour could never have taken place so a huge thank you goes out to those that made it possible.

Household Cavalry Golf 2012

A

fter the success and varied golf in 2011, this year proved to be more difficult due to commitments in Germany and Canada. The early season found some success in March at the Household Division Championships held at Worplesden GC where WO2 Chris Lewis and CoH Lee Walker won the Military Team net combined competition.

by Major Paul McKechnie

Shortly after, the first round of the Colonel in Chiefs cup was also played at Worplesden GC and, as with last year, the B team was unsuccessful and the A Team progressed to the next round. In September the A team, consisting of Dick Hennessy-Walsh, Russ Taylor, Neil Flynn, Stuart Sibley, Neill Harman and Gary Dunkley, retained the Colonel in Chiefs Cup played at Worplesden GC beating The Coldstream Guards 5 up. This is the third year that the A team has retained the cup. In October the HCav Golf team were graciously received by Wimbledon Common GC in the only match of the year. The team consisted of Maj Paul McKechnie, Maj Ratty Core, WO2 (AQMS) Oldrid, SCpl Jock Anderson, SSgt Chris Horne, CoH Lee Walker, CoH Marc Stay, LSgt Shaun Hall, LSgt Steven Malvy, LCoH Jason Wharton, Tpr Sam Worthington and Mr Chris Bye. WCGC won 5-1.

Capt Chris Hatton 9/12L, WO2 Lewis and CoH Walker on the first tee Roman Road Course Celtic Manor. Major McKechnie in the background laughing at their hats!

As a season ender the ARMCEN and RAC Golf Society ran a 3 day competition at Celtic Manor Golf resort. HCav

Entrance to the 2010 Ryder Cup Clubhouse

was represented by Maj Paul McKechnie, WO2 Chris Lewis and CoH Lee Walker. The highlight of the event was the chance to play the 2010 Ryder Cup course which was an excellent test of golf, the ability to put and saving golf balls!

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 59


HCR Regimental Rugby 2012 by Captain B F Woolf

T

he tempo of both Hybrid Foundation Training (HFT) and Mission Specific Training (MST) left its mark on the Regimental rugby team, as since the last Journal we have only played a couple of matches. The team ended 2011 on a winning streak but failed, however, to follow that through into 2012 with two losses, firstly to 6 Battalion REME and secondly to our Scottish (Fijian) Blue-Red-Blue counterparts. Both games were played in the usual HCR style whereby the majority of the squad had just come off exercise and then had a day to train, but showed a huge amount of regimental pride and worked their socks off for 80 minutes.

The Regimental Team

6 Bn REME posed a real test in the rain at Tidworth as they were a formed rugby team and had a number of Army rugby players; this only phased the HCR team for the first 20 minutes at which point we realised they were still just as susceptible to the adverse conditions. The grit and determined showed kept the score line narrow and the stand out performances came from Sgt Moseley in the forwards and LCoH Camiabau in the backs. This game gave a lot of confidence to the side which were preparing for the Scots Guards and the Army Shield Quarter Finals.

the opportunity to bring out the key points to work on from the REME game. The quarter final was to be played at Windsor RFC which automatically gave the HCR the advantage as our opponents had to travel from Catterick. We were probably better prepared for this game than any other, however had suffered losses of key members of the team owing to courses in preparation for both BATUS and Afghanistan. There replacements proved worthy and another dogged performance kept the Fijians Guards to a 10-15 loss. LCoH’s Qio, Chalkin and Robinson led the team with great performances placing their bodies on the line in front of the biggest crowd I have witnessed for a regimental rugby game.

The two games led well into each other and allowed WO2 (AQMS) Carragher

Whilst the season ended in defeat, WO2 (AQMS) Carragher should be men-

tioned for his work with the rugby team as without him the team would not have flourished as it has over the past two years. We wish him luck in his new job in Woodbridge with the Royal Engineers.

Advance to contact

Sailing - Ex COCKNEY COWES by Captain PJR Chishick

A

fter returning from BATUS, a crew from the Household Cavalry competed at Cowes Week on the Household

Crew hiking out

Division Yacht, Gladeye. Due to the regatta falling in the middle of summer leave, the crew was made up of officers from the Regiment, with the skipper, Maj Simon Carpenter from the Coldstream Guards as our experienced Gladeye racer. This is the first time in a number of years that Gladeye has competed at Cowes and she acquitted herself very respectably.

her 30th birthday and it would be fair to say that she is not as speedy as she may once have been, and our handicap was not hugely in our favour against a lot of lighter, more modern boats. The first couple of days of racing saw

Cowes Week is a week of racing based out of Cowes on the Isle of Wight, made up of a number of classes, from “one-design” yachts to a series of handicap classes. Gladeye is a wellmaintained Swan 391 that is used by the Household Division all year round for Crew on one of the wetter days Adventurous Training. (l-r: Capt Dickon Leigh-Wood, Capt Charlie Dale, Capt John RawdonThis year she celebrated Mogg, Capt Will Boyd-Thomas, Lt Jack Campbell, Capt Johnny Clive)

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 61


the crew honing their skills and getting used to their positions on the boat. A number of the crew had limited sailing experience and no racing experience, and consequently it was a fairly steep learning curve for Capt Whiting and Capt Clive who took up position on the foredeck. As “foredeck monkeys” they bore the brunt of some fairly heavy weather and usually took the full force of the waves!

Downwind legs were always something of a challenge, as we watched the other lighter boats shooting off with their spinnakers, however, with our Skipper’s cunning use of a double Genoa and spinnaker pole, we were able to present a fairly large expanse of sail. Heavier winds also worked in our favour and as we got to the end of the week and gusts of up to 30kts, Gladeye ploughed through the waves while the lighter modern boats were thrown around, pushing us up a few places in the fleet.

All of the crew were members of the Household Division Yacht Club (open to all serving and retired officers of the Household Division – for details contact the author), which meant that we were able to use the Royal London Yacht Club’s facilities and attended their ball and other social functions. We were also extremely fortunate to be invited to watch the fireworks from the Commodore of the Royal Yacht Squadron’s boat which provided an excellent view.

The crew relaxing on a downwind leg

(Capt Johnny Clive, Capt Dickon Leigh-Wood, Capt Paul Chishick, Capt Will Boyd-Thomas, Capt Tom Whiting, Tpr Elliston-Jones)

It soon became apparent that we were not going to be putting too much pressure on the top end of our fleet as their lead stretched away; there were, however, a number of service boats in our fleet who were closer to our level. These, therefore, became our focus for the week, with our two main rivals being the Royal Engineers’ boat Ilex and the Royal Armoured Corps’ racing yacht, White Knight. Due to our handicap we had elected not to use a spinnaker (as we would have been even further outclassed in the class above) though in spite of this Gladeye managed to hold her own against these two main rivals.

Gladeye sailing past the Squadron

Capt Rawdon-Mogg was nominated as navigator for the week and largely due to his efforts, we were able to make up ground on our rivals as they went for the wrong buoys or failed to take into account the tide. Aside from a brief brush with the Brambles Bank, we caught up several faster boats through good course selection. Gladeye finished 25th overall, of a fleet of 34, comfortably ahead of our main rivals from the Royal Armoured Corps and Royal Engineers and in addition was placed 4th in the Nautor-Swan Trophy.

The Showgirls … accompanied by some of the plumed dancers

It was a highly successful week and Gladeye was remarked on by many, with her absence from Cowes having been noted. The crew certainly made the Blue-Red-Blue presence felt, cutting a dash ashore and on the water, and our Household Cavalry battle ensign was the envy of the Medina.

Sailing - Ex CANARY GOLD - Jan 2012 by WO1 M Flynn CGC MC

A

crew from the Household Cavalry took part in Ex CANARY GOLD in January last year, an exercise run annually by the Joint Services Adventurous Sail Training Centre (JSASTC) on board one of the training yachts, a Nicholson 55’, which does a series of two week legs around the Canary Islands. Whilst it was open to all services, the Sailing Officer, Capt Chishick, had block booked this leg for the HCR and seven soldiers from Windsor were able to take part. We set out from Windsor on Sunday 15th January for our flight to Lanzarote where we were due to meet the boat leaving the chilly British winter for the somewhat warmer Canary Islands. After a short taxi transfer from the airport we arrived at the yacht, Dasher, where we met the skipper from JSASTC and had our safety brief and induction onto the boat. The exercise was intended to

62 ■ Household Cavalry Sports Round-up

The Crew in harbour on board the yacht


be a development for those who had done some sailing before on Gladeye as a preparation for taking their RYA Day Skipper qualification, with the majority already having gained their Competent Crew.

Under sail

On Monday we started to get into routine, with Reveille at 0630hrs and we got into our crew watches, with two experienced watch leaders also provided by JSASTC. We were keen to get under sail as soon as possible and were able to make sail by 0900hrs. With a steady Force 4 breeze coming from the NE and clear blue skies, we sailed 3 Nautical Miles (Nm) to the SW of the Island for the first of our safety lessons, in which the crew was given an introduction to the basics of sailing and the procedures for man overboard and other safety requirements. We then proceeded SW to a point 1 mile south of Lanzarote practising changing tack at regular intervals along the course we then headed NE to the Marina at Rubicon where we spent the night. The wind picked up during the night and there was a fairly considerable swell with a fairly strong North Easterly Force 5 wind. Consequently, the following morning, we put two reefs in the mainsail and hoisted a reduced foresail, beating up to windward to get SE to Pourto del Rosario but due to the inclement weather there were not enough berths there so we pushed on to Morro Jable on Fuerteventura arriving just before dark. Although we had been due to sail a passage of approximately 25NM, we ended up doing 75 NM in some pretty rough seas; a number of the crew had their first experience of seasickness, Tpr Cooke in particular. The crew took turns on the helm and the weather stayed pretty blustery until we got about a mile from the Marina and

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he Household Cavalry have been involved in numerous cricket matches this summer with members of HCR and HCMR playing for The Royal Armoured Corps Cricket Club and The Guards Cricket Club. Both teams have had a decent amount of success, as illustrated in The Guards Magazine and

once in, we took on provisions for the next few days at the large supermarket. Many of the crew were rather relieved to get on to dry land! The weather was similarly changeable the following morning, albeit somewhat calmer. We set sail at 0800hrs as our Reveille and prep timings were somewhat slicker than when we first started, and were soon under sail making good speed of up to 9 knots. On this leg we practised sail changing and reefing until we became quite proficient at it – though a couple of the crew were still suffering the effects of sea-sickness! On this leg we were lucky enough to be escorted by a school of dolphins who stayed with the boat for about 45 mins. We then stopped for the night at Las Palmas on Gran Canaria. Sadly, the following day the seas had not calmed down a great deal and we had one of the roughest of the passages on the trip as we beat upwind, with gusts of up to 45 knots. The approaches to Puerto Rico, our port for the night, were also particularly treacherous so the skipper and mate had to do a few navigational checks to ensure that they were on track to make the channel in and avoiding hitting the sharp coral heads.

put in. It was quite tiring but overall a good day’s sailing. The following day saw a much gentler wind to start with prior to a fairly substantial sea passage of 135Nm to cover to Lanzarote. We broke down into our watches and settled into the passage through the night arriving in Rubicon Lanzarote shortly before midday, with the trip taking nearly 24hrs.

The author at the helm with LCoH Jones

The Crew under sail

Dolphins accompanying the yacht

After a much needed day of maintenance on board and a chance to recover from some fairly austere seas, the weather calmed a little, and we had a gentle reach SW across to San Miguel Marina Tenerife. The next day saw a long beat upwind as we headed to Santa Cruz on Tenerife. Fortunately by now, our tacking was up to speed and we had a good sail, taking us 6 hrs to sail the 20 NM covering 25 NM in total with the amount of tacks we

On the Thursday we set sail for the last leg of the expedition at 0900hrs and we headed NNE for 2 hours then dropped anchor at Papagayo Bay. Here in the beautiful bay we had a swim around the yacht and then after lunch we set sail for Puerto Calero our final port, where we conducted our preparation of the boat for handover. Overall it was a fantastic couple of weeks sailing with some challenging conditions and some great experiences. The crew certainly came off the boat at the end of the trip with a much higher understanding of sailing and the challenges of sailing a yacht on a long passage. After their experience on board they should all be well placed to look at progressing with their sailing qualifications and I think that all enjoyed the experience and would be keen to take part in the exercise again.

Cricket

by Captain John Clive the RAC Journal, and the Household Cavalry players have been key within these teams. WO1 (RCM) Brown, LCpl Matt Cooney and Tpr Jean-Paul Van Der Walt have been the most prominent players for the RAC, with Capts GordonDean and Dale competing for The Household Division throughout the

season. Various matches were played by both clubs on invariably sodden English wickets, yet the clear highlight of the cricketing calendar 2012 was the RAC tour to India. Members of The Household Cavalry made the voyage to

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 63


RAC innings with a tremendous 52 on his 23rd birthday, however the remainder of the RAC were unable to perform to the same standard to gain a win. In the same match Tpr Jean-Paul Van Der Walt finished with an economical 4 for 25 from 4 overs and in the final match he then excelled with the bat by scoring a blistering 35 off just 16 balls. “Everything in place?”

the global epicentre of cricket, where in their first match LCpl Cooney made a strong impact for the visitors by taking the wicket of the Mutineers XI leading run scorer on 41 to slow an aggressive inning. Having taken this critical wicket he then dominated the first half of the

trick however he bowled a wide on the hat-trick ball much to the amusement of his fan club sitting on the boundary.

For The Guards CC Capts Gordon-Dean and Dale competed in a rather more recreational spirit, Gordon-Dean scoring a surprisingly consistent total of 0 in 2 matches from 2 balls. The HCR Adjutant also did little to add to this tally with the bat. One would love to mention his hat-

Overall it has been a decent if rather constrained season with the obvious commitments to BATUS for the first half of the summer. Yet although the majority of HCR will be away on H18 next summer HCR and HCMR will likely continue to field key players for both the RAC and The Guards. Summer 2014 will undoubtedly be one to look forward to with less of an operational focus for HCR and no doubt the annual duel between HCR and HCMR match will again be hard fought.

Tpr Van der Walt en route to scoring an outstanding 35 off just 16 balls

LCpl Cooney on the way to his 50 on his 23rd birthday

Tpr Van der Walt in action in India

Household Cavalry Cresta Run 2012 by Captain PJR Chishick LG

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his year, the Household Cavalry took a team out to St Moritz again to compete in the Army Inter-Regimental Championships on the Cresta Run. The team this year was bigger than previous years, with four officers and four other ranks, from both Knightsbridge and Windsor. Three of the team had ridden the Cresta before with 2Lt TL Seccombe LG and LCpl RJ Murphy RHG/D and the author having ridden in previous seasons; LCpl Murphy was the novice champion from the previous year. Regimental beginners all reported to the Run at 0630 on the Monday morning for their course of instruction in how to ride

The Household Cavalry Team L-R: Tpr Williams LG, Lt Harbord LG, LCoH Jones RHG/D, LCpl Murphy RHG/D, 2Lt Seccombe LG, Capt Chishick LG, Lt Barnes RHG/D and Tpr Jones RHG/D

Ct Barnes leads a sombre team away from the briefing

the Cresta, the famous “death talk”. In your first three rides you are given instruction on how to get down the run – effectively learning how to control your speed by digging the spikes in your boots into the ice and learning how to steer your toboggan, a 70lb ‘glorified metal tea-tray on runners’, around the various corners of the run – but primarily the daunting “Shuttlecock” corner. Most of the beginners paid a visit to the straw of Shuttlecock in their first few rides but soon started to get the Cresta

64 ■ Household Cavalry Sports Round-up

“bug”. There are two start points for the run: “Junction” for the less-experienced riders, which is about two thirds of the way up the run; and “Top” for the more experienced riders who qualify to ride from there. The Army Junction championships were held at the end of the week, consisting of the Novice Open race, Handicap race and the 17th/21st Lancers Trophy, an open race for the fastest Regimental pair. The races are all conducted over


of the Household Cavalry novices were placed in the top six. Tpr Williams LG was placed 1st, Lt Barnes RHG/D was placed 3rd, and Tpr Jones RHG/D and LCoH Jones RHG/D were placed 5th and 6th respectively. In the handicap race, three of the top six were Household Cavalrymen with Lt Barnes in 2nd place.

Lt Harbord demonstrates how to fall with style

three rides, or “courses”, with the lowest aggregate time winning (whether as an individual or a pair for the team race). The pressure normally builds on race day, with riders trying to improve their times and pushing themselves to the limit of their ability – usually resulting in a number of falls (and thus, disqualification from the race). This year we were able to make up four teams; two from The Life Guards and two from The Blues and Royals. In the 17th/21st Lancers Cup the experienced pair of the Life Guards’ ‘A’ Team, comprising Capt PJR Chishick LG and 2Lt TL Seccombe LG narrowly came in second place to the Queen’s Royal Lancers team by just over two seconds. The Life Guards ‘B’ Team was sadly knocked out after Lt JHS Harbord LG fell. The Blues and Royals’ ‘A’ team, comprising Lt JB Barnes RHG/D and Tpr RS Jones RHG/D and the ‘B’ Team of LCpl RJ Murphy and LCoH PF Jones came in 5th and 6th places respectively. In the Novice Open competition, four

The following week was the Inter-Services week and Top riding and the majority of the team returned home though Tpr Williams and Lt Harbord were invited to stay on to try to qualify for the Army Squad. Captain Chishick was captain of the Army Team this year and 2Lt Seccombe LG, was also in the Army Team. The Army Top Championships, the Scots Guards Cup, took place on the Tuesday. Lt SO Seccombe QRL (brother of 2Lt Seccombe) took first place, with Capt Chishick in second place followed by Col R 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 and to test the Army team under race conditions. The competition for the InterServices Championships was very open this year, with all service teams having only four experienced Top Riders. In this competition the teams are of six riders, with the top four to count; should one of the best four fall, therefore, the competition would change dramatically. Despite not looking the strongest on paper, the Army team rode consistently in the face of pressure, losing only one rider at Shuttlecock, Col Wieloch, in the first course. The Navy and the Royal Air Force lost two of their fastest riders by the second course with both the other service captains falling. They then lost further riders, meaning that they did not even qualify, leaving the Army team with

The Prizewinners from the Services Silver Spoon: Front row Tpr Williams LG (2nd), Capt (retd) Law (1st), Lt Harbord LG (3rd)

a comfortable win for the first time in seven years. The Lord Trenchard Trophy for the fastest individual Rider over the course of the race went to Lt Seccombe QRL, with Capt Chishick LG behind him in second place. Tpr Williams and Lt Harbord (both LG) both rode very well and came 2nd and 3rd respectively in the Services Silver Spoon, the Junction Handicap race, with Capt (Retd) Victor Law LG in first place. The age gap between Tpr Williams and Capt Law was exactly fifty years, and it was great to see Life Guards in the top three places. These two serving Life Guards both qualified for Flat Top toboggans at the end of the week and will thus be in the Army Squad for next year, putting us in a strong position within the Army Team. Regimental Cresta is looking extremely promising for years to come, with three Life Guards in the Army Team and two in the Squad, one of whom is a Trooper from Knightsbridge and would be the first OR in the Army team for some time. 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 Household Cavalry soldiers made up the majority of the soldiers out there and they performed in an exemplary manner. The beginners had the trip of a lifetime and were able to experience a high-adrenaline sport that they would not otherwise have had a chance to try. Back at home we held a dinner for Cresta riders past and present. Below the diners pose again.

L-R Front Row: Lt Col Snook, Capt Chishick, Capt (Retd) Victor Law LG, Brig (Retd) Andrew Parker Bowles RHG/D, Maj (Retd) Ranulph Rayner LG, Maj (Retd) James Kelly SG, Lt Col (Retd) Gordon Birdwood RHG/D L-R Back Row: 2Lt Tom De Ritter LG, Ct Cameron Bacon RHG/D, Lt Jack Barnes RHG/D, Lt Archie Horne LG, Capt (Retd) Alex Howard-Keyes LG, Capt (Retd) Will Snook RHG/D

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 65


Household Cavalry Nordic Skiing 2011/12 by Lieutenant WMF Turnor

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ordic skiing has got a reputation as a gruelling and exhausting sport for good reason; it involves not only extreme levels of fitness and technique to perform well but also marksmanship and race strategy. The best skier in a competition won’t win if he receives poor advice on which wax to use on his skis; many a competitor devastates his chances by pushing too hard on the course only to enter the range too exhausted to shoot straight, for each target missed the competitor is obliged to complete a penalty loop. A physically and intellectually demanding competitive sport which fosters bonds of trust and team spirit as well as being thoroughly rewarding for all, the ideal arena for the Household Cavalry to shine. The Household Cavalry was fortunate to put together a strong team of ten to spend the winter training and competing against the best of the Army and Britain in Nordic skiing. The team trained in Austria in the lead up to Christmas before competing in three competitions: The RAC championships in Hochfilzen, Austria; the Divisional competition in Serre Chevalier, France; and finally qualifying for the Army and British Championships in Ruhpolding, Germany. Capt Boyd-Thomas’s immaculate administration and foresight set us far ahead of other regimental teams. It also gave us all rather too much pleasure to see our brand new Land Rover Defender and Discovery 4 complete with regimental insignia sat in car parks full of white fleet vehicles. Even before we left Windsor for the small Austrian town of Ramsau in November, WO2 Marsh’s energy and infamy for ‘taking you back to the eighties’ as a physical instructor left us in a state of mixed trepidation and quiet confidence that success would come our way. We were not disappointed; within the first week he pointed to a towering mountain and announced we’d be doing hill sprints the following day … right to the top. What followed was

The Team having completed a morning of hill sprints

two months of intense developmental, physical and technical training that saw complete biathlon novices turned into a proficient and confident race team with very high fitness levels. Everyone worked hard at a tough and testing program carefully put together to make the most of our time before competition season.

ed with Best Combination team and individually Lt Turnor was placed second overall novice. More importantly our efforts were rewarded with a place in the final competition in Germany; Lt Turnor, WO2 Marsh, LCpls Carrigan and Richardson, and Tprs McQuade and Wallis made the final ORBAT with Tpr Massey qualifying as an individual.

Following a short break for Christmas we moved on to Hochfilzen; a course feared by professional champions for being complex and unforgiving. Straight away it became apparent that our hard work had paid off. Tpr Massey won the impressive accolade as Junior Novice Champion; Lt Turnor also coming away with a bronze in the Senior Novice competition. The team almost always found themselves beating regiments with similar experience.

This slimmed down Household Cavalry team committed themselves fully to the task at hand; the culmination of British Army competition and the British National Championships in the Alpine home and Olympic venue of Biathlon, Ruhpolding. Every individual performed exceptionally but where the team really did well were the relay and patrol team events. We were able to regularly beat major teams known for their skiing that included British national skiers; these teams included 17 Port and Maritime (‘Sports and Pastime’), 14 Regt RA, 131 Commando, 1 RHA, and 2 RTR. The SCOTS DG, who in the first competitions had been a threat, were now nowhere near us. Lt Turnor won bronze medals in the novice 7.5km cross-country, and novice 15km and 12.5km biathlons. However, the achievement to note above all others was Tpr Massey who went from strength to strength earning himself a place on the National Development Squad; he has trained all year with National Coaches and I have no doubt he will make invaluable contributions to our team this year and team GB in the future.

The Household Cavalry maintained its momentum moving on to France for the Divisional competition and was reward-

The Household Cavalry Patrol Race team being inspected

66 ■ Household Cavalry Sports Round-up

Lt Turnor handing over to WO2 Marsh in a relay


Martial Arts at the Regiment, a year in review

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lthough Martial Arts in the Regiment is probably a minority sport compared to the big five sports, it still none the less attracts a hardcore Zenlike following among its devotees and has put the Household Cavalry at the epi-centre of the Army team. The Unit’s regular martial artists Maj Tadge Tate, Capt Nick Stewart, Mr Aftab Hussain and WO1 Danny Hitchings met up on 17th March 2012 at the Combat Sports Centre in Aldershot for the 2012 Army Martial Arts Association (AMAA) Championships for some hotly contested Taekwondo action. After many bone crunching and bruising rounds in a host of different martial arts including Karate, Kendo, ITF Taekwondo and Weapons. Pride of place went to Capt Stewart who won a Gold medal in the ITF Taekwondo mixed belts Patterns division; while Mr Hussain settled for a Bronze Medal in the WTF Taekwondo division. Last year the medal results were the other way round, what will next year’s results be?

Three of the HCav Martial Artists: Mr Aftab Hussain, Major Tate and Capt Stewart

by Mr Aftab Hussain

Maj Tate was presented a painting of a Japanese horseback archer as a leaving gift from the AMAA, its representation of martial spirit and horsemanship is something which Maj Tate will be fondly remembered for. Maj Tate was one of the original members of the Army Martial Arts Association when it was first formed back in 1995, and won its inaugural championship the following year in 1996 – as well as going on to receive many accolades and awards after that. He also took the Army Taekwondo Team for its first overseas tour to South Korea in 2010. On 1st April 2012, Mr Hussain led a six man team of Army WTF Taekwondo players into the Chungdokwan National Championship, which was held in Bracknell and came away with five medals (2 Gold, 1 Silver and 2 Bronze); this was a first for the Army WTF Taekwondo Team in full contact, Olympic style Taekwondo after many years of absence from the civilian competition. During the autumn months, Mr Hus-

Major Tate presenting Capt Stewart with the ITF TKD Patterns first place trophy

sain managed to persuade Sgt Lindgard MPGS to finally represent the Army at the Inter-Services. Sgt Lingard trained outside of his comfort zone (namely Kickboxing, something which he excels in) and had a go at both styles of Taekwondo (ITF & WTF). Sadly due to family commitments a day before the competition Sgt Lingard was unable to make the journey to RAF Cranwell. During the two day event, and after many hard fought bouts of full contact sparing, the Army WTF Taekwondo Team beat both the RAF and the Navy In what was possibly one of the most successful years in terms of results for the Army WTF Taekwondo Team, by clinching eight out of the possible 12 medals on offer. Martial Arts are the pinnacle of a combative yet discipline state of mind, whilst pushing the boundaries of fitness and robustness; they represent a skill set that every combat arm soldiers should endeavour to gain as the embodiment of ‘closing with and destroying the enemy’. Any soldiers who are interested in trying out martial arts can do so by attending one of the regular ‘taster’ courses held by the army in the Combat Sports Centre Aldershot. These courses last a week and all students get to try out a number of different martial arts such as; Muay Thai, Aikido, Jujitsu, Krav Maga, Brazilian Jujitsu and Combat Grappling. Anyone who already trains at a martial arts class and is interested in competing at the Army Martial Arts Competition should contact either Mr Aftab Hussain at HCR or Capt Stewart at HCMR.

The Joy of Triathlon

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here all kinds of triathlons but the basic format is always swim-bikerun in that order, with distances varying to suit the needs of each individual, from the oversized person who is trying to loose weight to the completive person who wants to break records to the regular-Joe that just wants to have fun. There are three standard distances that are normally raced. First is the Ironman distance, which is the toughest and not for the faint hearted; this distance consists of a 1.5mile swim, 112mile bike, and a 26.4-mile run. The pros complete this distance in less than 7 hours - but for most people just completing this is an achievement in itself. Secondly is the Olympic distance which consists of a 1500m swim, a 24-mile bike, and a 6-mile run with the pros completing it

by LCpl Kitching

in less than 1 hour 50 minutes. The last of the standard triathlon distances is the humble sprint distance, which consists of a 750m swim a 12-mile bike and a 3-mile run. The pros compete this in less than 50 minutes and, in my opinion, this is the most fun, as you don’t have to pace yourself; you just have to go as hard as you can for as long as you can. Triathlons go a bit like this: the gun goes off for the mass swim start and everyone is swimming over each other – like the mass retreat from Moscow; there are arms and legs everywhere and you are lucky to finish

LCpl Kitching digging deep

the swim without being kicked a few times. Upon completion of the swim, I am normally already exhausted and it feels like my heart is about to pop out of my chest; the swim is not my strongest

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 67


leg of the race and I usually finish this leg in the middle of the pack. There are always loads of supporters cheering the participants on and whenever I see or hear them it makes me go a bit faster. During the first transition I am running to my bike all the while taking off a wetwetsuit, which is not easy and requires a decent amount of co-ordination, I can then quickly change into my cycling gear and make sure to put on my helmet before touching the bike. On the bike I ride as hard as I can as this is where I make up the lost time from my swim and I start picking off all the slower riders that came in before me in the swim.

By the end of the bike stage I’ve made up quite some time and am in the top few people in my heat. The next transition is much easier; I swing my leg off the bike, put on my running trainers and start running. At this point, everyone is starting to run out of energy, but knowing that it is nearing the end of the race enables me to continue to push myself and I go all out. When I finally reach the finish line, it’s one of the best and worst feelings at the same time. I’m exhausted, everything hurts and it feels like my heart is beating a thousand beats a minute; I always push myself too hard, but it is always

worth it. The sport has really started taking off the last couple of years, but after the Olympics and the Browning brothers’ success, triathlons are more popular than ever. I would highly recommend everyone to have a least one go. While a specific race was the main reason for me getting into the sport, the triathlon community ensures that I keep doing them. One warning is that this sport can be quite expensive with bikes wetsuits etc, but once you start you won’t want to stop, you just want to get better and better.

The Tough Mudder Challenge

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ough Mudder events are hardcore 12 mile-long obstacle courses designed by Special Forces types to test the all round strength, stamina, mental grit and camaraderie of those foolish enough to enter. With the most innovative courses and half a million inspiring participants, Tough Mudder is the premier adventure series in the world; dubbed by the organisers as ‘probably the toughest event on the planet’. Knowing that this was going to be a major challenge and only a team of hardened cavalry NCO’s and Warrant Officers stood a chance, WO2 Moses thought it would be a great idea to enter a team. So having asked everyone if they wanted to enter this event, it came down to just six of us who were crazy enough to say yes, go on the website, pay the entry fee and wait for the day to slowly approach. We entered under the name ‘Team Cav’! The team comprised of WO2 Moses, WO2 Salina, CoH Hogg, CoH Walsh, CoH Loftus and LCoH Jones who was still carrying injuries from being wounded whilst on tour in Afghanistan. So having waited a few months for the event to come and having done very lit-

by CoH J Hogg

tle training apart from a bit of Squadron PT, the weekend arrived for us to head up to Cheshire for what was going to be quite a gruelling challenge.

The Team smiling nervously

Tough Mudder took place on a country estate in a place called Malpas, Cheshire. On the morning of the event we awoke to a cold and damp start, all of us tired, cold and slightly fuzzy headed from the night before; we made our way to the country estate totally unaware of what lay ahead of us. Once registered, we stuck our numbers on to our jerseys, tried to keep warm and rehydrate and waited half an hour before the event started, during which time we thankfully took part in the organised mandatory warm up. Once this was done we then had to make our way to the start line, all now fairly nervous and totally clueless about what task lay ahead of us. The loud haler sounded and that was us; Team Cav was on its way.

‘Team Cav’ L-R: WO2 Salina, CoH Walsh, CoH Hogg, LCoH Jones, WO2 Moses and CoH Loftus

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What lay ahead of us can only be described as pain, however being tough cavalryman we sucked it up! The obstacles we had to clamber over, wade through and jump off consisted of inventions like the Arctic Enema, which was a skip full of ice water topped with more ice and was one obstacle which we were all slightly concerned about, however it wasn’t bad and

nothing compared to what lay ahead. Nearly all of the obstacles involved getting wet and muddy which on a cold November’s day isn’t the best thing in the world; they also involved some element of teamwork, for example climbing 9 metre high wooden walls could not be done on your own and needed one willing volunteer to allow the rest of the team to climb on him using his hand and shoulders as boost to get over the wall. The final obstacle we had to endure involved running through 10,000 Volts of electrified wire whilst volunteers hosed you down with water, because 10,000 volts on its own wasn’t enough they needed to conduct the electricity a bit more. Needless to say we all got zapped and the shock was strong enough to knock you off your feet and in the case of CoH Walsh zap him in the eye which resulted in a black eye! So having: jumped into skips of ice cold water, jumped off 20 metre high platforms into cold water, got very muddy and wet several times, got cold, been zapped with 10,000 volts of electricity and felt the pain of doing nearly a half marathon with the added bonus of over 25 obstacles, we finished Tough Mudder in just under three hours with a smile on our faces and all said we would probably do it again – Nutters!

However hard or cold, always pretend you’re having fun


Rowing the Atlantic

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by Capt R Gordon-Dean

have always loved taking on physical challenges that take you out of your comfort zone. I’d bicycled across America and done the Marathon des Sables twice but I was not the most obvious candidate for ocean rowing. I’d rowed on the Serpentine in Hyde Park once and only been sailing once across the North Sea and found the whole journey rank as I was very badly seasick! Slightly out of the blue, I received an email from a man called Simon Chalk asking if I’d like to join his six man rowing boat in an attempt to break the Atlantic speed record of 32 days. My Colonel, delighted at the prospect of having me out of the mess for a while, happily let me join the crew! Our one and only training weekend in Yorkshire was my chance to meet the crew which consisted of Simon who has rowed across an ocean six times, an ex para, and ex marine, an ex Olympic rower from New Zealand and a fitness instructor from Yorkshire. A fairly eclectic bunch! The next time we met up was in Gran Canaria where we spent two weeks sorting out the boat, packing kit and more importantly waiting out for the weather to improve for our start. Eventually, the weather was in our favour and we set off early on Tuesday the 15th of January. The time in port had really dragged on so we were all delighted to be underway although it didn’t take any of us too long to realise this was going to be a slog! In fact the weather turned on us and the skipper contemplated turning back into port but he has since told us that he was worried that if he had done that, we’d all get off and never get back on! Seasickness had been one of my biggest worries before we set off but thank God for the pills I was told to buy in the chemist’s as they just about made sure that I only saw my food once. Very quickly the boat settled into an incredibly basic routine of rowing, sleeping/ resting and eating. Each ‘watch’ of three men would row for twelve hours a day and have twelve off in periods that would vary form one hour at a time during the heat of the day to four hours at nighttime. In the off watches you would make some hot water for your dehydrated rations, make fresh water from the desalination machine and wash your body free of the salt water. Whilst you were on watch - you rowed! I enjoyed the rowing and the satisfaction of feeling the boat moving and all being in sync was a lovely feeling but I’d be lying if I said that there weren’t huge periods of boredom! I was in the stroke seat so had the GPS and clock right in front of my face so I would literally watch every

Capt Gordon-Dean catching up with another good read

second tick over and the total ‘miles to go’ not go down quickly enough for my liking!

and now it was reality. It really was an amazing feeling and the relief of being there will be in my memories forever.

About half way through we had to accept that for all our efforts, the record was not attainable anymore. A lot of current not in our favour and 22 hours on a sea anchor being drifted backwards meant that our aim had now changed to simply rowing across and getting to Barbados. This did not mean anything really changed as we still had to keep our intensity up as we only had 28 days worth of food at the beginning and we were running out rapidly!

After such an event you have a chance to take it all in and realise what you have achieved. It had been a wonderful experience and my toughest challenge to date. Rowing the Atlantic was always going to be a mental and physical challenge but predominantly a mental one. I was amazed at how my training in the Army had made it all seem almost normal! You work, eat and sleep! I have made some great mates who I hope to keep in touch with for many years especially Andrew Berry and Kez Bostock who both had military careers in the past.

Eventually, after 35 days we made it into Port St Charles in Barbados and were welcomed in by family and friends. It really was a euphoric feeling knowing that we’d done it but also that we weren’t going to have to row the next day! For weeks we had dreamed of fresh food, a cold drink and a bed

I would like to thank my Regiment for allowing me take leave to do this and to all the people who sponsored me in aid of the Household Cavalry Foundation. Thank you very much.

Household Cavalry Sports Round-up ■ 69


News From The Associations The Life Guards Association Annual Report 2012 Patron: Her Majesty The Queen President

General the Lord Guthrie of Craigiebank GCB LVO OBE DL

Trustees of The Life Guards Charitable Trust Lieutenant Colonel AB Methven Lieutenant Colonel (Retd) AP De Ritter Major (Retd) JS Holbrook Major CT Meredith-Hardy Captain (Retd) GC Davies Mr PP Lewis, MBE WO1 (RCM) WD Brown WO1 (RCM) SK Fry, MC

Committee Chairman: Vice Chairman: Honorary Treasurer: Honorary Secretary: Co-opted Members:

Lieutenant Colonel AB Methven Major CT Meredith-Hardy Major (Retd) JD Knowles Captain (Retd) R Hennessy-Walsh JJ Harbord, Esq. Major JP Core Major DS Carter

Serving Members Lieutenant Colonel WR Lindsay Major JDA Gaselee Major TJ Armitage Major JEM Howell Captain BE Rogers Captain SB Taylor WO1 (RCM) WD Brown WO1 (RCM) SK Fry, MC WO2 (RQMC) BK Gibson WO2 (SCM) K Newell

Non Serving Members Lieutenant Colonel (Retd) AP De Ritter Major (Retd) JT Lodge Major (Retd) JS Holbrook Captain (Retd) GC Davies Mr LK Thomas Mr CD Watson Mr JE Lloyd Mr PP Lewis, MBE Mr GS Knowles, BEM Mr PJ Richards, MBE

Minutes of the 78th Annual General Meeting held at Combermere Barracks, Windsor, on Saturday 22nd September 2012

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he Chairman, Lieutenant Colonel AB Methven, opened the meeting at 1800 hrs by welcoming everyone present and thanked them for their attendance. The Minutes of the 77th Annual General Meeting are published in the current edition of the Household Cavalry Journal and the Chairman asked for them to be proposed and seconded as being a true record of the proceedings of that meeting. Proposed by: Major JS Holbrook Seconded by: WO1 (RCM) WD Brown HONORARY TREASURER’S REPORT The following report was given by Major JD Knowles. The accounts for 2011 are as published in the Journal on pages 80 and 81.

The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Account. It has been a successful year for the fund with grants totalling £5,468. The dividend from investments was £8,556 and the grant from the Days Pay Scheme £30,256. Most requests for financial assistance were met with a total of £29,761 being paid out in grants. Cash at bank at the end of the year was £52,203. The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Account No 2 . The fund has grown throughout the year with donations of £7,666, a profit from Christmas cards of £4,116 and a profit of £3,726 from the annual draw. Receipts of £2,385 were received from HMRC as a result of the Gift Aid scheme. Most requests for financial assistance were met with a total of £2,575 being paid out in unrestricted grants. Cash at bank at the end of the year was £30,330.

The Life Guards Association Account. The account continues to be a conduit for standing order donations which are transferred to the No 2 Account. A sum of £600 was awarded from the Norman Hearson Fund to soldiers for 2010 and 2011.The Norman Hearson Fund stands at £2,812. Cash at bank at the end of the year was £5,093. The 2012 Accounts September.

Summary

to

The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Account. The account has received: £1,691 from HMRC, £8,522 in grants, half year dividends of £6,044 and £22,000 from the Days Pay Scheme. A total of £18,985 has been paid out in grants. Cash at bank is currently £65,816.

News from the Associations ■ 71


The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Account No 2. The account has received: Donations £11,898, Annual Dinner £1,889, Christmas Cards £3,688, Mug Sales £192 and the Annual Draw £6,113. The cost of the Journal has risen to £2,212. The net cost of postage to date is £2,680. Unrestricted grants of £3,800 have been made. Cash at bank is currently £45,610 The Life Guards Association Account. Standing Order donations continue to be processed through the account. The Norman Hearson award for 2012 has not yet been made. Cash at bank is currently £5,349. The Chairman and members of the Committee would like to thank all members of the Association for their kind and generous donations without which much of the good work would not be possible. INVESTMENTS Value as at 19th September 2012 The Life Guards Charitable Trust The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Sir Roger Palmer Fund Sterling Deposit A/C

£938,236 £49,902 £12,522 £3,058

Total Value £1,003,718 The Trustees have reviewed the investment portfolio and a decision has been taken to move the investments from Collins Stewart to JO Hambro Investment Management.

responsible for steering us through the early days in the transition from the old to the new Trust. Everybody wished him and his family well in his move into civilian life. He confirmed that Brigadier EA SmythOsbourne had been selected for a Major General’s appointment in Afghanistan which he was to take up in October. This was the first Life Guard cap badged 2 star since Major General Sir Simon Cooper. Because of HCR’s operational tour to Afghanistan in 2013 the Standards Parade will be slipped to 2014. In 2011 the Financial Sub Committee considered 65 cases for assistance. So far this year we have dealt with 32 ranging in age from 14 – 90+. There is a general tendency for the cases to be far more complex than was the case a few years ago. There appears no indication of reducing demand despite the demographic trend towards a reduced beneficiary base. This may be the result of the impact of the economic recession. He saw no reason why these figures would decrease and was fairly confident that in the years to come there was likely to be an sharp increase when the effects of recent operational tours surfaced. He asked all members of the Association to be aware of those around them that might benefit from our assistance. The financial sub committee now has 3 Trustees on it. He was happy to report that around 50% of the membership had furnished him with email addresses.

There was a question from the floor commenting on whether the transfer from Collins Stewart to JO Hambro was an expensive operation. The Chairman confirmed that there was minimal cost on transfer. He also confirmed that JO Hambro’s performance was better than Collins Stewart despite the financial downturn.

He reported that the current membership stands at 2153 which has now been a fairly constant figure for a few years.

Proposed by: Mr PJ Richards, MBE Seconded by: Mr GS Knowles, BEM

He confirmed that the Household Cavalry Foundation web site (www. hcavfoundation.org) would be ready around the end of October. He reminded the meeting that the Foundation was being set up to care for soldiers, families, horses and the heritage of the Household Cavalry. It will aim to provide an umbrella of support for its regimental family.

HONORARY SECRETARY’S REPORT The following report was given by Captain R Hennessy-Walsh. He began his report by paying tribute to the Chairman who was leaving the Army in December and was therefore unable to remain in the Chair. He thanked him for the huge amount of work, time and effort that he had done during his time in the post. He was

72 ■ News from the Associations

He encouraged those that had not completed a Gift Aid Declaration to take one away, complete and return in due course.

He was sad to report that there had been 33 additional deaths since the publication of the Journal. Two of these had been Regional Representatives; Derek Pattinson (Cumbria) and Tony

Taft (Kent). Further to his earlier comment on cases for assistance he reminded Regional Representatives of the need to be vigilant in identifying former Life Guards who needed assistance. He thanked everyone for their efforts in selling tickets for the Annual raffle which were just over 6000 tickets. He paid tribute again to Mr Prynne who had sold £590 and to Mr Chalky White £250. A fantastic effort. He reminded everyone that the order form for Christmas cards could be found in the Journal and that currently sales were a little slow. He commented that the date of the Annual Dinner would be reviewed. Mr Paul Richards MBE replaces Mr Don Johnson on the Committee. Mr Johnson was thanked for his dedication and loyalty on the Committee since 1981. The Honorary Secretary concluded his Report by confirming that Quarterly Committee meetings continue to be held to decide on policy matters. Proposed by: Mr RE Jewell Seconded by: Mr PP Lewis, MBE Election of the Non-Serving Committee. In accordance with normal custom the non-serving members of the Committee all resigned and have all offered themselves for re-election for the coming year. They are: Lieutenant Colonel AP De Ritter, Major JT Lodge, Major JS Holbrook, Captain GC Davies, Mr LK Thomas, Mr JE Lloyd, Mr CD Watson, Mr PP Lewis MBE, Mr GS Knowles BEM and Mr PJ Richards, MBE. Subsequent to the meeting Mr LK Thomas has confirmed his wish to resign from the Committee. He served from 1994 -2012 and his dedication and loyalty over those years has been very much appreciated. Proposed by: Mr WA Loftus Seconded by: Lt Col GGE Stibbe, OBE ANY OTHER BUSINESS The Chairman explained to the meeting the position regarding the erection of a memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum. The aspiration was to have the work completed by 2015 – the anniversary of Waterloo. He will be speaking with Major Mark Coreth to see whether he had any further design thoughts since presenting his initial submission to the Committee earlier in the year. He was also hoping that


sufficient interest might be shown for the production of a bronze version of the Maquette. He said that he would be speaking with Major Coreth in October. He confirmed that the project was likely to cost in the region of £20K and that all donations (gift aid supported if possible) would be gratefully received. The Chairman noted that £11 per month (less than the price of a round of drinks?) over three years, plus gift aid, added to the tidy sum of £500. He would be leading from the front to raise funds for the memorial, and hoped others would follow. The Chairman confirmed the remarks made earlier by the Honorary Secretary in that he would be leaving the Army in December 2012. He was happy to report that there had been three volunteers to stand in and, for close geography reasons, Lt Col RRD Griffin would replace him as Chairman. He said that it been an honour and privilege to have been Chairman and to steward the Association through the last two years. Chairman’s Afternote: He thanked both

Major David Knowles and Captain Dick Hennessy-Walsh for their work and support during his tenure as Chairman and to Captain Jeremy Harbord and Captain Guy Davies for bedding in the modernisation of the Charitable Trust.

former Household Cavalrymen living in the TA post code region of which 16 are LG). Mr Punshon was passed the details of the Regional Rep – Mr BR Kelland. The Chairman drew the Annual Raffle tickets the results of which were as follows:

Mr Loftus was concerned that in all the years that he had been Regional Representative for the Sheffield region he had not been approached by any former member of the Regiment who needed assistance. The Hon Sec noted his comments but reflected that this might just be a case where no need existed but we should all remain vigilant.

10078 Mr DEJ Woodland, Fordingbridge £1000 26385 Mr C Mussett, Ovington, Northumberland £500 6022 Mr CS Rhodes, Rotherham, S York’s £250 14579 Mr Allan Wall, Builth Wells, South Wales £250 24798 Mrs Judith Hoskins, Chandler’s Ford, Hampshire £100 23379 Mr Angus Gill, Kemerton, Gloucestershire £100

Mr McInerny voiced concern over Pensioner’s allowances being cut and whether we knew who might provide advice. The Honorary Secretary confirmed that there were specialists in both SSAFA Forces Help and The Royal British Legion.

The meeting was closed Chairman at 1830 hrs.

by

the

Mr Punshon asked whether any other members of the Regiment lived in the Taunton area. (There are in fact 43

The Life Guards Association Income and Expenditure Account - 31st December 2012 Income

2011 246 60 378

Donations Life Membership Excess Exp/Inc

Total

2012

2011

Expenditure

2012

83 35 82

48 36

Stationary/Office Equip. Misc Exp St Georges Chapel Norman Hearson Prize

100 100

Total

200

600

200

Assets and Liabilities Liabilities Norman Hearson Fund Creditors Excess Assets/Liabilities Total

Assets 2912

Cash at Bank

5306

2394 5306

Total

5306

News from the Associations ■ 73


The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Accounts-Restricted & Unrestricted Income and Expenditure Account - 31st December 2011 2011

Income

2012

2011

Expenditure

2012

30256 8556 5468 7666 2857 884 2385 6759 6510 6127 20 514 468

Days Pay Scheme * Dividends * Grants ABFetc * Donations Postage Donations * HMRC Christmas Cards Dinner Annual Draw Poppies & Wreaths* Diaries Mugs Grants Transfer of Funds Christmas Cards *

22000 14248 9272 14418 3155 220 1691 5483 5179 6158

3750 415 29761 2575 7734 668

3750 405 28420 4105

Total

83931

Honorarium * Wreath & Poppies * Grants * Grants Postage * Misc Exp Misc Exp* Christmas Cards Dinner Annual Draw Journal Printing & Assn Badges Mugs Postage Donations Transfer of Funds * Excess Income/Exp Total

83931

19512 285

2643 4413 2401 2107 1141

980 217 910

120 19512

154 290 3298 7032 2932 2212 7101 24232

Assets and Liabilities Liabilities Sundry Creditors Excess Assets/Liabilities

Total

Assets 442358

442358

Cash at Bank Cash at Bank* Deposit A/C Investments at Cost

336090

Total

442358

41754 64514

Investments at Current Value Fund

Investment

Sir Roger Palmer Fund Helping Hand Fund The Life Guards Charitable Trust

6255 units in UST Income Fund Shares 24928 units in UST Income Fund Shares 67806 units in UST Capital Fund Shares 31337 units in UST Income Fund Shares Total Value

Value on Redemption 24th December 2012 12454 49633 888946 62393 1013426

Notes on the Accounts 2012 1.

For ease of presentation The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust Account and The Life Guards Charitable Trust Account No 2 have been combined in accordance with Charity Commission guidelines governing the presentation of accounts. Payments and receipts from and to the Restricted account are marked with an asterix.

2.

Dividends and Interest from The Life Guards Charitable Trust, Sir Roger Palmer Fund and The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust amounting to £14248 were paid into the Restricted account.

3.

The Trustees have completed their review of the Association’s investments. The investment portfolio is being moved from Collins-Stewart Wealth Management to

74 ■ News from the Associations

JO Hambro Investment Management. The three elements of the portfolio will be combined under the title The Life Guards Assn. Charitable Trust on transfer. 4.

At the Association committee meeting held on 18th July 2012 the committee directed that profit from the Annual Draw would be paid into the Arboretum Memorial Fund (AMF) for the next three years. This fund is held within the Charitable Trust Account No 2. A sum of £3226 being the profit in 2012 will be transferred into the AMF.

JD Knowles Honorary Treasurer


The Life Guards Association Notices Rules of The Life Guards Association All members of the Association should by now have received a copy of the new Rules of The Life Guards Association (1st Edition July 2011). If you do not have a copy please contact Captain Hennessy-Walsh on 01753 755229 or dhwalsh@householdcavalry.co.uk Membership All members are requested to introduce the Association to all those eligible for membership under Rule 6. The Annual General Meeting Notice is hereby given that the 79th Annual General Meeting of The Life Guards Association Charitable Trust will be held at Combermere Barracks, Windsor SL4 3DN on Saturday 21st September 2013 commencing at 1800 hours to transact the following businesses: Ordinary Business • To receive the Annual Report by the Honorary Treasurer • To receive the Annual Report by the Honorary Secretary • Election of Non–Serving Committee

members; Lieutenant Colonel AP De Ritter, Major JT Lodge, Major JS Holbrook, Captain GC Davies, Mr JE Lloyd, Mr CD Watson, Mr PP Lewis MBE, Mr GS Knowles BEM and Mr PJ Richards. • Any other business and closing remarks • The Annual Draw The Annual Dinner The 78th Annual Dinner will be held in Combermere Barracks Windsor on Saturday 21st September 2013 commencing at 1900 hours. Dress: Lounge suits with medals (not miniatures). The Chairman will be Lieutenant Colonel GGE Stibbe, OBE. Tickets will not be available at the door and must be obtained through the Honorary Secretary using the proforma enclosed with this Journal. Personal guests will not be permitted to attend unless authorised by the Regimental Secretary. The Regimental Corporal Major will offer the hospitality of the WOs’ and NCOs’ Mess to all members of the Association and their wives after the Dinner. It is however necessary for him to impose a restriction on children

accompanying their parents into the Mess unless they are aged 18 or over. Please also note that ladies should NOT attend until after the Dinner and that members should not rise during the time when speeches are being made. Christmas Cards The Christmas card order form will be despatched to the membership during the year. The inclusion of the order form inside the Journal – done in previous years - does not really work. Please note however that cards will not be despatched until around September 2013. A picture of the card to be used is shown here.

The Life Guards Association Regional Representatives

The Honorary Secretary is most grateful to the following 56 Old Comrades for agreeing to act as Regional Representative for the area(s) shown. For ease you will find your representative listed under your respective post code. If it is not shown you may wish to volunteer for that region in which case you should contact the Honorary Secretary on 01753 755229 or at: dhwalsh@householdcavalry.co.uk AB, DD, KY, PH Mr S Smith 594 Perth Road, Ninewells, Dundee, Angus DD2 1QA stu.smith@btinternet.com 01382 562 554 AL, EN, WD Mr JK Stanworth Flint Cottage, 25 West Common Redbourn, St Albans, Hertfordshire AL3 7DY john.stanworth@rnib.org.uk 01582 794 652 AUSTRALIA Mr RG Barnes 1777 Preston Main Road Preston, Tasmania, 7315 Australia rbarnes@southcom.com.au 00 61 03 6429 1227 AUSTRALIA Mr GS Coleman 12 Wild Avenue Reynella 5161 South Australia coleman839@gmail.com (0061) 8381 2074 B, DY, WR Mr MPG Southerton 5 Woodbury Road, Stourport On Severn Worcestershire DY13 8XR 01299 823 882 BA, BS Mr NS Hoon Windmill House, Alveston Road Old Down, Bristol BS32 4PH nickhoon712@hotmail.com 01454 416 522

BB Mr SG George 3 Pennine Court Tithebarn Hill, Glasson Dock Lancaster, Lancashire LA2 0BY stuartgeorgewaterloo@gmail.com 01524 751 572

CANADA Mr C Grant 101-2248 Southview Drive Se Medicine Hat, Alberta T1B 1R3 Canada crgrant@telus.net 403 527 2982

BD Mr H Stangroom 48 Rockwood Drive, Skipton North Yorkshire BD23 1UW harrystangroom@aol.co.uk 01756 709 121

CA Mr B Wood 7 Kemplay Foot, Eamont Bridge, Penrith, Cumbria, CA10 2BD berjoywood@aol.com 01768 863 941

BH, DT Major JT Lodge 180b York Road Broadstone, Dorset BH18 8EZ john.lodge601@mod.uk 01202 697 334

CB Mr S Smith 29 Monarch Close, Haverhill Suffolk CB9 9QW steve.smith@santander.co.uk 01440 763 407

BL, M, WA, WN Mr A Lister 120 Higher Dean Street Radcliffe, Manchester M26 3TE alan-lister47@o2.co.uk 0161 725 9851

CF Mr KH Sprigg 9 Clarence Court Station Hill, Maesteg Mid Glamorgan CF34 9AE sprigg.1@live.co.uk 07855 590 882

BN Major TW Bridges TD Downlands, The Furlongs Alfriston, Polegate Sussex BN26 5XS 01323 870 718 BR, DA, TN Mr DH Underwood Ingledene, Beesfield Lane Farningham Kent DA4 0BZ dubigd@aol.com 01322 866 334

CH, LL Mr SJ Rochford 7 Shaw Close, Great Sutton South Wirral, Merseyside CH66 2QE steven.rochford@ntlworld.com 01515 122 748 CR, RH, SM Mr RB Jackson 68 Bynes Road South Croydon, Surrey CR2 0PR rob.jackson@ocs.co.uk 07956 123 961

News from the Associations ■ 75


CV Mr BN Angove ‘Fergove’, Church Road Long Itchington, Nr Rugby Warwickshire, CV47 9PR bryan.angove@btinternet.com 01926 812 011

HP, OX Mr LG Weekes 5 Abbots Wood Headington, Oxford Oxfordshire OX3 8TR lenweekes@hotmail.com

CW, SK Mr JW Maxwell JP ‘Meadowside’, Wilmslow Road Mottram St Andrew, Macclesfield Cheshire SK10 4LQ 01625 829 197

HR, NP Mr M Knight 37 St Helens Road, Abergavenny Gwent NP7 5YA 01873 854 460

DE, WS, WV Mr CD Watson 2 Steenwood Cottages Steenwood Lane, Admaston, Rugeley Staffordshire WS15 3NQ clive.watson@virgin.net 01889 500 656 DH, DL, TS Mr D Sayers BEM 35 Grange Road, Belmont City Of Durham, County Durham DH1 1AL 0191 386 6912 DN Mr I Sanderson MBE The Dovecoat, Low Street North Wheatley, Retford DN22 9DS janeandsandy@googlemail.com 07831 899 918 EH, FK, ML, TD, G Mr JA Robertson 16/9 Calder Grove, Edinburgh Mid Lothian, EH11 4LY a_good_malt1@yahoo.co.uk 0131 477 7699 EX, TQ Mr LJ Young 1 Priory Gardens Friernhay Street, Exeter Devon EX4 3AP jkyoung2012@yahoo.co.uk

01392 215 768

FY, IM, L, PR Mr W Sewell 11 Rowland Lane Thornton-Cleveleys, Blackpool Lancashire FY5 2QX billandval@uwclub.net 01253 826 577 GL, SN Mr D Barnfield 9 Wickridge Close, Uplands Stroud, Gloucestershire Gl5 1ST 01453 763 218 GU Mr TGW Carrington 331 Yorktown Road College Town, Sandhurst Berkshire GU47 0QA 8846@surrey.pnn.police.uk 01276 363 84 HD, HX, OL Mr MP Goodyear 18 Fields Road Lepton, Huddersfield West Yorkshire HD8 0AQ mike.goodyear@o2.co.uk 01484 605 888 HG, LS, WF Mr JA Denton The Forge South Stainley, Yorkshire HG3 3LZ johny.denton@googlemail.com 01423 772 999

76 ■ News from the Associations

01865 451 318

IP Mr DAP Bridges Hall Farm Cottage, North Snetterton Norwich, Norfolk NR16 2LF desbridges@hotmail.co.uk 07748 273 885 KT, TW Mr THT Morgan-Jelpke 41 Heath Road Weybridge, Surrey KT13 8TJ t.morgan897@ntlworld.com 01932 854 935 LA Mr N Clarkson Calder Park Calderbridge, Seascale Cumbria CA20 1DN 01946 823 404 LD, SY Mr AT Prynne 15 Daffodil Wood Builth Wells, Powys LD2 3LE at.mprynne@btinternet.com 01982 552 296 LE Mr WD Elsmore 34 Barkby Road Syston, Leicester Leicestershire LE7 2AF 0116 269 5794 LN, PE Mr I Wild 39 Camelot Gardens, Sutton On Sea Mablethorpe, Lincolnshire LN12 2HP ian_wild@hotmail.co.uk 01507 441 293 LU MK, NN, SG Mr SR Carter 117 Khasiaberry Walnut Tree, Milton Keynes Buckinghamshire MK7 7DS steve.carter10@btinternet.com 01908 670 299 NEW ZEALAND Mr J Bell 88 Rangatira Road, Beach Haven, Auckland, 0626 New Zealand jigjag@vodafone.co.nz (0064) 09478 8246 NG Mr JT Powell “Braeside” 37 Gainsborough Road Winthorpe, Newark Nottinghamshire NG24 2NN katejeff.powell@talktalk.net 01636 701 681 NG Mr DI Savage 73 Montrose Grove Greylees, Sleaford Lincolnshire NG34 8GT david.i.savage@lmco.com

01529 488 575

NR Mr AJ Gook 17 Moorland Close, Mousehold Lane Norwich, Norfolk NR7 8HD 01603 484 336 PL Mr CI Nicholson 25 Coleman Drive, Staddiscombe Plymouth, Devon PL9 9UN chrisnicholson58@hotmail.com 01752 313 867 PO Captain WAB Henderson RVM 190 Highbury Grove, Cosham, Portsmouth, Hampshire PO6 2RU bill_henderson@ntlworld.com 02392 385 806 RG Mr ID Margan 49 Chatteris Way, Lower Earley Reading, Berkshire RG6 4JA ian.margan@ntlworld.com 0118 907 1385 S Mr WA Loftus 2a High Nook Road, Dinnington Sheffield, Yorkshire S25 2PH loftusalive@aol.com 01909 518 405 SA Mr RJ Cobb 107 High Street, Neyland, Milford Haven Pembrokeshire SA73 1TR 01646 602 084 SO Mr L Cordwell 50 The Crescent Netley Abbey, Hampshire SO31 5BH lee.cordwell@hotmail.co.uk 02380 560 759 SP Mr GH Hitchman 27 Apple Tree Road Alderholt, Fordingbridge Dorset SP6 3EW 01425 656 444 ST, TF Mr F Fox The Radjel, 3 Bramall Close Tillington, Stafford Staffordshire ST16 1YQ f-fox@sky.com 01785 252 351 TA Mr BR Kelland 57 Estuary Park, Combwich Bridgwater, Somerset TA5 2RF brnkll@hotmail.co.uk 01278 653 466 TR Mr RE Jewell 21 Ellen Close, Mount Hawke Truro, Cornwall TR4 8TU rejewell@hotmail.com 01209 890 080 USA Mr KJ Frape 2015 Cherry Laurel Drive Columbia, South Carolina 29204 USA frpkth@aol.com 001 (803) 787 1244 YO Mr GM McInerny Welburn, Church Lane Fylingthorpe, North Yorkshire YO22 4PN gm.mcinerny@btinternet.com 01947 880 298


A Life Guards Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum – A Call to Arms. from Lt Col (Retd) A B Methven formerly LG and Chairman of the Association

I

retired just before this journal went to press, and so have stepped down as Chairman. However, having seen the start of the project for a Life Guards Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum, I am pleased to retain this particular link and push through to the target date of June 2015 – Waterloo 200. As you may be aware, the National Memorial Arboretum (try googling ‘NMA’ or <thenma.org.uk>) was set up two decades ago in Alrewas, just north east of Birmingham. Near Britain’s geographic centre, it is sited in the least inconvenient place for everyone to visit. Its aim is a national focus for remembrance, particularly service and sacrifice since 1945. As the name suggests, there are a lot of trees planted, with more to follow. Indeed each Regiment has a tree and small plaque. It is also home to the impressive and moving Armed Forces Memorial, and, of interest to those who served on Op TELIC, the Basrah Wall, inscribed with names of all those who lost their lives on the recent Iraq campaign. There are also many other service and regimental memorials. At the request of Mr. Ted Land and others, I went up to visit two summers ago. I left agreeing that if one was to visit (and I am glad that I did), it is a shame we can’t do better than a sapling. This is not to keep up with the Jones’ (six figure sums could and have disappeared on grand projects) but, when on the ground, there is a definite sense of a lack of focus for the Regiment; this could, nay should be addressed. To that end, the committee resolved we should investigate a modest memorial. It should stand on its own merits, not feel it was in competition with anyone, and provide the missing focus when Lifeguardsmen and their families visit. A beauty parade was run last spring. Three sculptors, all with some sort of regimental connection, put in excellent proposals. But none quite hit the spot. The committee agreed to work with Mark Coreth, formerly RHG/D, and develop his proposal (see the photo of his miniature model, about 6” tall, known as the Maquette, and now named ‘Dick’ after the Hon Sec! Any eventual sculpture would be approximately lifesized). Mark’s subsequent thoughts are: As a Household Cavalryman I was delighted to be asked to consider creating a sculpture to be placed at the National Memorial Arboretum to the memory of those who have served with The Life

Guards. The Life Guards have a long and glorious past as its many Battle Honours portray, indeed as recent years have illustrated the Regiment is forefront in the making of today’s history and we can only assume will be every bit as prominent in the distant future. With this in mind I firmly believe that the memorial piece that we make must be a timeless work that will honour the Lifeguardsman regardless of rank, of specific conflict or of year. If we could bring together members of the Regiment from the past, the present and the future I would like those men to see, understand and respect the Spirit of The Life Guards. To achieve this aim I feel very sure that the sculpture must be very simple and uncluttered...and as such powerful and moving. So the committee is working with Mark to come up with a design which is a fitting tribute to all those who have served since 1945, reflecting the spirit of the Regiment.

considered) so that it will not stretch the Association. Our budget is in the region of £20,000, and the target date is Waterloo 200, so we have two-anda-half years, which is good time. We have already had significant donations thanks to Clive’s efforts, and many thanks to the Brickhanger’s Association this year for their generous contribution. Having myself been ‘invited’ to contribute to other charities over the years, I have found the most painless way of giving is a modest Standing Order each month. An affordable £11 per month, plus gift aid, sums to a useful £500 over three years. For those that know me well, I do not normally shout about these things - equally, I lead from the front when required, so I have signed my life away for this worthy cause and I encourage you to do the same. All enquiries to the Regimental Secretary at Home Headquarters Windsor. More to follow in the next two years. Wait Out!

In passing, there was significant interest after the beauty parade in having a small run of casts made of the Maquette for sale, regardless of the eventual final design. Those interested should contact the Hon Secretary. Mr Clive Watson has nobly agreed to lead the fundraising effort. I know that there have been endless appeals recently for museums and casualties, but we have deliberately contained costs (the reason one of the other bids was not further

News from the Associations ■ 77


Major Victor Whitworth Late 1st The Royal Dragoons by Colonel AB Houstoun OBE MC JP DL (formerly 1st The Royal Dragoons) Victor Whitworth, who died on 27th September 2012 after a year’s illness, joined The Royals in the Spring of 1939 as one of a draft of reinforcements of all ranks, with two other officers straight from Sandhurst. The Royals, still horsed, were part of a force ‘peacekeeping’ between Jews and Arabs in the Jordan basin in Palestine and patrolling the rocky desert with a mixture of mounted troops and motor vehicles. With the outbreak of war it had become obvious that mechanisation was already overdue and by December 1940, at the Colonel’s request, training to become an Armoured Car Regiment had already begun. On 25th May 1940 A Squadron went into the Western Desert ‘under instruction’ with the 11th Hussars who had been mechanised (with Rolls Royce’s) since the early 1920s. A month later the rest of the regiment joined A Squadron to take over the line from the 11th Hussars. In the next 15 months Victor, with his troop of armoured cars (Marmon Harrington until Daimler arrived in October), covered the 500 miles to Benghazi three times as the fortunes of the Desert War swung back and forth. By the end of October, having proved himself an outstanding troop leader, he was to face his greatest challenge. As part of Montgomery’s Great Plan at Alamein, the Infantry supported by the heaviest ever artillery barrage was to mount a night attack, disorganising Axis defences sufficiently to allow three Armoured Car Regiments to break through, and then swanning far and wide in the Africa Korps rear areas, and disrupt the supplies and communications of the retreating Germans. Victor was chosen to lead The Royals two squadrons through the minefields, wire and front line in the hours before first light. All went well until just as he had passed all the major obstacles his car fell into a huge bomb crater - two other cars also fell into slit trenches. By the time Victor had unditched his car daylight forced him to return to base - Monty’s HQ - where he was ordered to repeat the process that night and lead the South African Armoured Car Regiment through as they had failed in their attempts the previous night. This he did successfully and managed to find his Squadron later that day some 30 miles in the west having followed the trail of burning vehicles that their exploits had already caused. He continued with the Regiment all the way - into Italy and then Normandy to Denmark -always quietly but totally in charge of the situation. It was in Italy, where the Regiment was billeted near Foggia and virtually unemployed in the almost static battle, that he spent some time as one of Monty’s personal liaison officers. North West Europe was the next “days march nearer home” - after just seven months at home after leaving Italy. Life continued with 18-20 hours of daylight instead of the deserts 12 hour day all the year, and then a winter of less light of any kind, and frozen petrol. Victor now in command of a Squadron found himself leading it to the fairy tale land of Denmark on VE day - only to be confronted on reaching Kolding by a German submarine whose commander would not believe the

88 ■ Obituaries

war was over until a show of Britain’s armoured might - a couple of Daimler armoured cars persuaded him to surrender his U boat and crew to Victor - almost certainly a first for an armoured regiment. Denmark was too good to last. Two years in Germany in the Brunswick area followed, demobilising soldiers, training recruits and in Victor’s case, helping to organise the racing stables and other horse activities, and some very rough shooting. It was in 1947 he married Jane, his wife for 65 years, having met her at Goodwood Races the year before. They were to set up home in Fife where Victor was posted as Adjutant to The Fife and Forfar Yeomanry who were to be reactivated as part of the new TA. This he did so successfully that The Fife and Forfar Yeomanry was one of the best recruited TA units by the end of his two year tour, during which he found time to help with the Pony Club and Point to Point, as well as some shooting and fishing, both of which he was no mean performer. In 1949 he left the Army to join his father in the family firm Whitworth and Mitchell. In a rapidly changing textile industry, including the takeover of his family firm, he began to look for new challenges - which he found in the Stock Exchange. This he took to in his own words like a duck to water. Finally he retired to the family home in North Wales, fishing on his beat on the River Dee and shooting grouse in the Peak District as long as he was able, after that working in the garden to which he was devoted - and helping with Riding for the Disabled. I was lucky enough to have known him since July 1943 and to have been his Second in Command for two years after the war. He was always the best of company, quietly and endlessly considerate of others and quite unflappable. If at times he seemed to hold his cards a bit near his chest, you could be sure that when the moment came he would produce just the card to do what was required, and a quiet smile to go with it. He is survived by his wife Jane and daughter Susie.

Captain Michael Naylor-Leyland Late The Life Guards Michael Montagu George Naylor-Leyland died on 8th August 2012 aged 86. He was born in London on February 21st 1926, the second son of Sir Edward Naylor-Leyland, 2nd Bt. He wanted to join the Navy and passed the entrance exam to Dartmouth, but was rejected because of poor eyesight. Instead he went to Eton and then Sandhurst, was commissioned into The Life Guards in 1944, the family regiment, and joined 1 Household Cavalry Regiment and took part in the forced crossing of the Rhine and the final months of the campaign in north-west Europe. At the end of hostilities in Europe, he accompanied The Life Guards to the Canal Zone and then to Palestine, where there was an ongoing conflict between the Arab and Jewish communities. On the morning of April 13 1947 an armoured convoy of buses and ambulances travelling under the flag of the Jewish Red Cross left Jerusalem for the Hadassah Hospital on Mount Scopus. On board were professors, doctors, researchers and scholars who had fled persecution in Europe. Half an hour into their journey they were ambushed by Arab insurgents. A mine was exploded at the front of the convoy,


the rear vehicle was disabled and everybody in between was trapped. Hearing the explosion, the commanding officer of the Highland Light Infantry went to investigate. Under heavy fire, he reached the convoy and could have saved many of those trapped; but the doctors and professors chose to stay in their vehicles and wait to be rescued by their own people. The Haganah, a Jewish paramilitary organization, did not appear. Instead, more Arabs arrived and attacked the column with small arms fire and petrol bombs. Almost six hours after the initial explosion, a troop of the Life Guards under the command of Naylor-Leyland was sent to assist the convoy, only receiving clearance to use their main armament after permission had been granted from Whitehall. Lt Naylor-Leyland took his vehicles in close to the fighting under the cover of smoke. He and his Corporal of Horse then removed the engine covers from their vehicles and, using them as shields, moved into the convoy, bringing out as many survivors as they could. They made several journeys, but, of some 80 who had set out that morning, only a very few, believed to be single figures, survived. Lt Naylor-Leyland was awarded an MC. After an appointment as ADC to General Arkwright in BAOR, he returned to Britain. Decorated, good-looking and (erroneously) thought to be very rich, he was much in demand at parties in London, hunting in Leicestershire and shooting. From 1948 to 1952 his life was centred around Hyde Park Barracks, where he was Equestrian Officer to the Household Cavalry Regiment and commanded the Musical Ride. Meanwhile, at Porlock, Somerset, he trained for the Olympics. He was selected for the 1952 three-day eventing team but caught chickenpox just before the event and could not compete. He continued his eventing career, winning a team gold medal and individual bronze at the European Championships in 1955. The following year the British Equestrian Foundation bought High and Mighty, the leading event horse at the time, for him to ride, but it went lame, and by the time it came sound again the Olympics were over . After retiring from the Army, in 1952 he bought a farm in Gloucestershire. He was also headhunted into an electrical engineering firm in Swindon which was steadily successful for the rest of his employed life. In retirement, he had considerable success training three-day event horses; he also enjoyed golf, shooting and fishing. Michael played more than handily in a variety of competitions: for the Old Etonians, the Household Division, and White’s Club. He won the Singles competition at Royal St George’s Sandwich in 1987 and 2000 and the Spring Foursomes with in 1996, 2001 and 2002. He was reportedly ‘delightful to play with. I remember coming up against him when playing with Andrew Scott (formerly The Royals). In his laconic way and puffing away at a cigarette he said to us “I think you boys should know that Columbus O’Donnell and I have a combined age of 159”. I think we were beaten 5&4.’ He was particularly proud of these five Club championships, his version of the ‘majors’. Michael Naylor-Leyland married, in 1952, Jacques Floor, who survives him with their son David, who followed him into the Regiment, and his two daughters, Joanna, and Atalanta who predeceased him.

Major William Glazebrook Late Royal Horse Guards William (Bill) Leng Glazebrook was born in London in 1929, educated at Eton, and he joined the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) after the end of the Second World War. Bill was serving at Knightsbridge, London when he married Diana Huxley in 1952. They were ordered by the then Commanding Officer, that as it was the time of Court Mourning, they were either to postpone their wedding, or to have a quiet one in the Coun-

try, which they did - much to Diana’s father’s delight! An unforgettable memory for Diana was Bill flying over the Spithead Review at the time of the Coronation, with her as a passenger. No one buzzed them! They marked their Diamond Wedding Anniversary in April 2012. Later in 1952 he was posted to the Army Air Corps at Middle Wallop and was the first Cavalry Officer to receive his wings, flying Auster fixed wing aircraft The various Auster models were extensively used in the UK and British colonies after WWII for a variety of activities such as Air Observation Post (AOP), mail delivery and VIP transport. He was subsequently posted to Germany, where after a year he reconsidered his flying career after a near miss with high voltage pylons. He returned to Windsor, where he was appointed the Recruiting Officer and received the last conscript for National Service at Combermere Barracks. He left the Army in the rank of Major in the early 1960’s. However, he soon became disillusioned with ‘civilian life’ deciding he wanted to apply his mathematical ability to a career. Rejoining the Army and opting for the Royal Army Pay Corps (RAPC), he trained to be an accountant starting at the rank of Lieutenant. He was subsequently posted to 11th Hussars as the Paymaster in Hohne, British Army of the Rhine, from 1965 - 1968. By 1969 he had returned to HQ RAPC at Worthy Down where as a Lt Col he was involved in computerising Army pay. In order to maintain his varied career and life he left the Army in 1974 to train at the theological College in Edinburgh to become an Anglican Priest, becoming Rector of two different Parishes in Scotland including HM Prison Perth, before moving to the Diocese of Oxford, to be nearer his disabled Mother-in-law, where he was Vicar of seven Churches. He also became Chaplain to The Worshipful Company of Saddlers. In 1994 he retired back to Scotland where he was employed when required as a Priest, till his health deteriorated after the first heart attacks in 2006. He died in Perth on July 31st 2012. He leaves his wife, Diana, Mary his daughter, and three grown up Grandsons. His son Robert, who joined the Royal Hussars, died after an accident in Northern Ireland in 1976.

Nicholas Assheton Late The Life Guards

(largely drawn from The Daily Telegraph obituary) Nicholas Assheton, who has died aged 78, was a banker and served as the Queen Mother’s last Treasurer. He was born on 23rd May 1934 and died on 27th November 2012. He was a national service officer, serving his two years in England prior to going to university, enjoying a time with no deployments or activity. Research has shown no basis for the slightly damning line in The Daily Telegraph obituary stating that his

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fellow officers ‘did not rate him a natural soldier’. He served at a time of limited activity, and little chance to prove himself militarily. He clearly got on well with his peers. Assheton was asked to take the role of Treasurer to The Queen Mother in 1998 by Sir Shane Blewitt, lately retired as Keeper of the Privy Purse. But it was no easy appointment, as the incumbent Treasurer, Sir Ralph Anstruther, already in frail health, proved reluctant to surrender the reins of office. Assheton sought to pave the transition by inviting Anstruther to lunch at White’s in the company of Lord Napier, Princess Margaret’s Private Secretary. Anstruther feigned ignorance as to why the lunch was taking place and subsequently missed no opportunity to complain that his job had been prised from him by “a little clerk from Coutts”. Nevertheless Assheton took over, integrating himself into a team unused to changes, least of all financial ones. Contrary to the popular belief that the Queen Mother was extravagant, he detected a distinct Scottish frugality in aspects of her character, and proved popular with the Ladies-in-Waiting when he doubled their modest stipend. He enjoyed his time in royal service. Once when staying at Sandringham in the summer of 2001, the fire alarm went off in the night. Various guests trooped out and corgis were seen being led out by a page. Assheton enquired if the Queen Mother was coming down and was told: “No, but she has put her pearls on.” Assheton served until her death in 2002, and was then appointed CVO. Nicholas Assheton was the second son of Ralph Assheton, former chairman of the Conservative Party, who was later ennobled as 1st Lord Clitheroe. The Asshetons are an ancient family tracing their roots to Ashton-under-Lyne in the 1100s. Ancestors served John of Gaunt at the Siege of Noyon in 1377, fought with Henry V at Agincourt in 1415, and rode in the Coronation procession of Richard III as Vice-Constable of England. The family prospered in Lancashire, with many serving as High Sheriff. Nick Assheton’s grandfather was created a baronet in 1945, and his father a peer in 1955. Nick was brought up at Downham in Lancashire, where the family had been seated since 1558, and educated at Eton and Christ Church, Oxford, graduating in 1957. After National Service and a spell as a lieutenant, Inns of Court and City Yeomanry Regiment, he joined the Stock Exchange, joining Montagu, Loebl, Stanley in 1957. He became a partner in 1960, was senior partner from 1978 to 1986, and then chairman from 1986 to 1987. After the firm was taken over by Flemings, Sir David Money-Coutts invited him to move to Coutts, where he was a director from 1987 to 1999, serving as deputy chairman from 1993 to 1999.

extraneous material from the files. Nick Assheton is survived by his wife, his son Tom who served in The Life Guards in the 1980’s, and two daughters.

Captain Roger Pilkington Late The Life Guards Roger Pilkington died on Saturday 24th November just two days short of his 58th birthday. His funeral was held at Exbury on 19th December, a well attended and as happy an occasion as it could have been. Roger (‘Dodge’) Wayne Pilkington was commissioned into The Life Guards on 9 December 1978 (at the age of 24) having been ‘recruited’ at RMA Sandhurst by Brigadier Andrew Parker Bowles. He joined the Regiment in Windsor, and left 3 years later having served at Windsor, Nicosia in Cyprus and Detmold in BAOR. The 1979 Acorn magazine indicates that B Sqn was then under command of Major Dick Morrisey-Paine, with Tp Ldrs: Miles Watson; Tim Paske, Roger Pilkington, Nigel Macpherson, David Waterhouse; Charles Cayzer. Roger was in good company. In Germany he was in D Sqn with Major James Ellery. He was a highly respected and popular man with both his brother officers and soldiers alike. Below are some reminiscences delivered by Miles Manton at the funeral: Roger Pilkington, or as most knew him Mr Dodge could not have been more appropriately named. How he got his name nobody can tell me. He was never quite the Artful Dodger nor was he ever really dodgy - he was just Mr Dodge. There are one or two of you here who were friends of his from Oundle School but I first came across him at Sandhurst and even though he was in the intake below he seemed to be able to move at will between intakes. I can imagine that as a new boy at Oundle he probably had as many friends in the sixth form as he did in year one; he had that ability to mix with everyone and no one could ever be jealous of his popularity.

In 1960 he married Jacqueline Harris, the youngest daughter of Marshal of the RAF Sir Arthur Harris. As Arthur Harris was a GCB, the couple were married in Westminster Abbey, where the groom noted that one of his ancestors had carved the name Assheton on the Coronation chair. He went on to serve as Chief Honorary Steward at the Abbey from 2002 to 2006, an appropriate appointment since his father had been High Steward of Westminster Abbey from 1962 to 1984.

Like most key moments in his life he joined the army on an impetuous whim, having first left his accountancy course because it was too boring, and secondly having grown tired of running J Arthur’s, a notorious night club at the end of the King’s Road in London, which was unfortunately taking a heavy toll on his physical well-being. Unlike most privately educated young men he had not a clue about why or where or how he was going to join the Army and just joined up at the nearest recruiting office, who signed him up to the Fusiliers and sent him as a recruit to be trained as a private soldier at their Depot. It was not long before he attracted their officers’ attention and some considerable puzzlement and it was suggested that he might transfer to the Officer Corps - something he swears he never knew about. Thus to Sandhurst, and whilst there he was recruited for The Life Guards by Andrew Parker Bowles, partly because PB had a great talent for recruiting and partly, I’m sure, because PB had a wicked sense of humour and liked mischief making where all Life Guards officers were concerned.

Assheton was also a director of United Services Trustees from 1981 to 2002, and their chairman from 1997 to 2001. Other interests included a keen knowledge of genealogy and a love of wine, travel and his London clubs. He was also a “weeder” in the Royal Archives, charged with the sensitive role of pruning

Needless to say, it was an inspired choice and Dodge was forever grateful. Dodge was a great officer and was as popular with the soldiers as he was with his brother officers. We were together for just over three years serving at Windsor then Cyprus, Troop Leaders course and finally for 1½ years in West Germany. He

He then moved to SG Hambros Bank & Trust, serving as chairman from 2000 to 2007 , before retiring after 50 years in the City. His integrity and calm guidance were factors in ensuring that Coutts and Hambros preserved their reputations at a time when other banks did not.

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left as a captain and joined the Exhibition Business and made the best decision of his life by marrying the gorgeous and highly entertaining Steffi, and they had a son, Milo, whom he adored. Sadly, the marriage only lasted less than 8 years and I think that Dodge’s decline started in earnest around the point of the break up. As you know, Dodge loved a drink and a cigarette and was never happier than in a bar - having a party. He developed an alcohol problem and was diagnosed as Bipolar. For several years he lived in a small cottage near Lepe, Hampshire, near the coast and was heartily involved with a charity teaching and working with young teenagers in boats with the life boat rescue service. While that was a short biography of Dodge’s life. But Dodge was much more than what he achieved, or failed to achieve, in his life. He was, as a friend observed: “The best and most loving and charming rascal I will ever know”. And he’s right. In all the years I knew Dodge I never once saw him lose his temper. He always looked on the bright side of life, even when the outlook was dark. He very rarely said a bad word about anybody. He was always ready for a party and perhaps of all the people I have ever come across, he had a wonderful ability to mix. It didn’t matter if you were in the poorest part of Delhi or the poshest bar in Paris, he would be able to chat to whomsoever and lighten up their day. He would be as happy sitting and having a drink with the roughest, meanest, most impoverished man around or the smartest, richest man in town - they were all the same to him - so long as they were prepared to have a drink and have a laugh. He was quite simply the nicest man I ever knew and I know I speak for all of you when I say that I miss him - lots. A story which Dodge often liked to tell was when he was a troop leader in Germany. This appealed to his sense of the weird and bizarre and also to his sense of fun, adventure and merriment. He had a particularly quirky soldier called Trooper Thickbroom. Thickbroom had a kind nature but was a bit scatter-brained and was always in trouble and had been locked up in the regimental jail reluctantly by Mr Dodge. Tpr Thickbroom managed to escape from the jail in Detmold and walked nearly 80 miles along a railway line to Bremerhaven, living off swedes from the fields, whereupon he cadged a lift to Harwich. He was arrested by the port police and handed over to the Royal Military Police. Dodge received their report: Corporal Smith RMP: Are you absent from your unit in Germany ? Thickbroom: Yes Corporal. Cpl Smith: Why did you go absent? Thickbroom: Because I wanted to see my Mum , Corporal. Cpl Smith: Why didn’t you ask permission to go on leave? Thickbroom: Because I didn’t think it would be granted Corporal. Cpl Smith: Why not? Thickbroom: Because I was in detention at the time Corporal. To Stephanie and their son Milo we extend our sincere condolences at this very sad time.

Maj (QM) Taffy Price Late Royal Horse Guards and The Blues and Royals Oliver Mark (Taffy) Price was born on 19th November 1921 at Abertilly, Llanhilleth, Monmouthshire and attended Llanhilleth High School. He enlisted into the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) at Acton, London on 2nd July 1940 at the age of 18 and 7 months; he’d been a shop assistant, and stood at a height of 5ft 6 inches. He was transferred to “Morris’s Mission” on 27th November 1941. The special unit, which took its name from its OC, Major Morris, had a mission to become a special guard for the protection of the Royal Family. The threat of invasion was causing concern to officials at this time and the

unit followed the Royal Family everywhere from Balmoral to Windsor. They were always on the alert in case word of invasion came. If Britain had been invaded they were to escort the Royal Family to the nearest available airfield and get them to Canada as quickly and as safely as possible. He returned to normal duties at the end of 1942 when the threat of invasion was over considered unlikely. 5780082 Trooper Price became a member of 2 HCR which had converted from a Motor Battalion to an Armoured Car Regiment in the newly formed Guards Armoured Division. 2 HCR landed at Graye-Sur-Mer in Normandy in July 1944, and they were in the lead of the British advance until September. The Regiment were first across the River Souleuvre, taking a vital bridge which led to the collapse of the Germans in Normandy. 2HCR, leading the Guards Armoured Division (which spearheaded the 31st Army Group into Northern France), made rapid headway, and by the 3rd September became the first British troops to re-enter Belgium. The last battle honour of the 2 HCR was in the fighting around and capture of Bentheim, on the German/Dutch frontier in April 1945. After this it continued the advance between Hamburg and Bremen and ended the war by entering the German naval base of Cuxhaven on ‘VE’ Day. Following the end of the War the Regiment served in Germany for seven years patrolling the Iron Curtain. In October 1950 he married Esme Mary in his home town Llanhilleth, Wales. Between 1952 and 1964 the result of this long time partnership was to provide three daughters, Carol, Janet and Susanne. He was stationed in Windsor, the traditional home of the Household Cavalry with RHG between 1952-56, steadily progressing through the ranks. The armoured cars of The Blues patrolled every part of Cyprus during the emergency, 1956-59. Large quantities of terrorist weapons and documents were captured, escorts found for the governors of Cyprus and it was here that he was mentioned in Despatches. The Regiment was stationed in BAOR between 1962-66, returning to England at the end of that time. His family accompanied him throughout these moves. He was the Regimental Corporal Major of the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues) between April 1963 - April 1964. In March 1964 the Commanding Officer of RHG Lt Col H S Hopkinson, wrote of him, “A very smart, intelligent and likeable RCM who commands the respect of all ranks. As SCM he was outstanding having a ready grip of all the essentials, yet being able to administer discipline correctly where required and having a great understanding of Man Management”. It was in 1964 that he was granted a Short Service Combatant Commission in the Household Cavalry and became 476246 Lt OM Price (RHG) initially as MTO. He was awarded a Regular Commission (QM) in 1966. Again, with his family accompanying him at Bovington, Dorset he was the Quartermaster RAC Centre in 1970. For a short period he was posted as a Holdee at Knightsbridge and took up the appointment of QM RHG/D in September 1971 till 1974. He was promoted to Major (QM) in May 1972 and after his period as QM he retired from the Army in July 1974 and became the Household Cavalry Careers Officer responsible for recruiting as a Retired Of-

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ficer Grade 2 at Home HQ, RHG/D. He retired from the Civil Service and regimental life in Nov 1985 but remained to reside in the Windsor area. He sadly passed away on 10th October 2012, aged 90 years.

Major John William Clayton Late The Blues and Royals by Roger Fortt formerly The Blues and Royals John William Clayton was born in London on 3rd December 1943 and grew up in the East End where he became very streetwise and a survivalist at an early age. He trained as a slaughterman but soon realised that he needed to broaden his horizons and first thought of joining the Fire Service. He always found it ironic that he was turned down for not being physically up to the job (too scrawny), his handwriting was illegible (he practiced ever after to become perfect), and it was thought that he would not be able to tolerate the discipline. After his second interview he went immediately to an Army recruitment office and was accepted into the Royal Horse Guards where the demands on his physicality and discipline were far higher. Bill as he was better known by his army mates joined The Blues in 1963 and was posted to Herford in Germany. He was rapidly promoted to Lance Corporal and after coming top of his Junior NCO’s cadre course in 1965 he was promoted to Corporal and found himself at the Guards Depot as a Lance Corporal of Horse in 1966 where he was soon recognised as a first class drill and weapons instructor giving the Foot Guards a run for their money. After the amalgamation of The Blues and Royals in 1969 Bill proved himself the complete all rounder by serving in the armoured regiment on Chieftain tanks, where he qualified as a regimental gunnery instructor, in Canada on the safety staff at BATUS, at Sandhurst training potential officers and as Squadron Corporal Major in Northern Ireland. In 1983 Bill was promoted to WO1 as the Regimental Corporal Major at Knightsbridge. Bill was commissioned in 1985 and went on to become QM and finished his service with the Regiment as HQ Squadron Leader at the Mounted Regiment in 1992. After leaving the Regiment he became QM with the Scottish Yeomanry with responsibility to help raise a new reconnaissance regiment and he eventually became a Civilian Staff Admin Officer with the Royal Scots Coy, 52 Lowland Regiment, until he retired in 2003. Bill and his wife Carole then started a new adventure by moving permanently to the Limousin in France where he lived out the rest of his days enjoying his life in the French community, showing the same passionate nature for all things that only Bill could. If they had an Olympic event for passion Bill would have won the gold medal. He was determined to learn French by attending local government courses. He stood for local councillor at the elections. He entertained in his own inimitable fashion and often had soirees with his French neighbours. Bill loved his hobby of carpentry and woodturning and many of his labours of love have been presented to his friends as gifts and will remain as part of his legacy. Latterly, he turned to apiary and as with many of Bill’s projects he became the consummate expert and wrote articles for his local newspaper on the art of bee keeping. Bill had a thirst for knowledge and was very exacting as those who served with him will remember, he was also one of the kindest

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and caring of men and would travel far and wide at the drop of a hat (and he had many) to help his friends and family. Bill passed away on April 6th this year after a very short illness and only a week after being admitted to hospital. His wife Carole whom he adored was with him throughout his hospitalisation. His sisters Brenda and Kathy and his four children Toby, Philip, Lucy and Ben of whom he was extremely proud and protective, supported Carole at a cremation service in France for family and local friends. I would never be forgiven by Bill if I did not mention that his initials were JC and that he held his last parade on Good Friday. He is obviously now in excellent company. A celebration of the life of John William Clayton was held at Holy Trinity Church in Windsor in September where a vast number of his friends from the Household Cavalry attended.

Major Joe Schofield Formerly The Life Guards prior to SAS Major Joe Schofield, who has died aged 90, wore the SAS Badge and Wings for a continuous period of close to 40 years; he also had the distinction of being the only soldier to serve with five SAS regiments. Major Joe Schofield, born June 23rd 1921, died February 8 2012. Schofield joined the 1st SAS in North Africa in 1941 as it was evolving from L Detachment, its earliest incarnation under its founder David Stirling. He was fortunate to survive his parachute training. The aircraft to be used were not equipped with static fixed lines, and Schofield said later that on his first jump the parachutes of the three men ahead of him “romancandled” and they fell to their deaths: “I was Number Four in the stick.” The air dispatcher just managed to grab him before he jumped. Schofield took part with the regiment in several raids on airfields and in the ambushing of convoys on the coastal road. After it was reorganised in 1943 as the Special Raiding Squadron (SRS) under Paddy Mayne, he saw action in the invasion of Sicily. Schofield was part of the force that scaled the cliffs at Cape Murro di Porco and knocked out a fortified farmhouse at the top. On the Italian mainland, he fought alongside the Commandos in the capture and then dogged defence of Termoli. In August 1944, in an operation codenamed “HAGGARD”, Schofield was dropped into France with a party from “B” Squadron 1st SAS and elements of the French and Belgian SAS. There they linked up with the Maquis around the Falaise pocket, harassing German units and signalling their positions to the RAF. The following winter he was involved in long-range reconnaissance patrols during the Battle of the Ardennes. In April 1945, at Lorup, near Cloppenburg in Germany, Schofield was in the leading jeep scouting ahead of a column when he came under heavy machine-gun and rifle fire from two houses and a wood beside a country road. His commander was killed, and Schofield was momentarily pinned by shrapnel through one leg to the bodywork of the vehicle. Dragging himself on to the bonnet to return fire, he was then hit in the other leg by a sniper. Bleeding profusely from his wounds, he and his driver were taking cover in a ditch when they were narrowly missed by two rockets from a panzerfaust. Mayne, alerted by radio, went forward alone and cleared the houses with a Bren, shooting from the shoulder. With a volunteer manning the rear guns,


he then drove his jeep up the road under fire, engaged the enemy troops in the wood, turned around, drove back down and then — while still under attack — returned a third time to rescue the wounded Schofield. Mayne was subsequently recommended for the Victoria Cross but received instead his fourth DSO. Albert Schofield was born at Stalybridge, Cheshire, on June 23 1921. His father worked for the railways delivering parcels in horse-drawn vans. Educated at the local school, he left at 14 and was taken on by an engineering company. The owner had promised him work in the drawing office but then gave the job to his son. Schofield, offered alternative employment as a steel forger, walked out. He enlisted in the Army Supplementary Reserve and, after a spell with the Cheshire Regiment, in 1938 transferred to the Life Guards. His exemplary record with the Cheshires earned him promotion on transfer, but he found himself the smallest in the troop — his nickname “Joe” originated from a cartoon called “Little Joe” that was popular at the time. He was regularly given sentry duty around Whitehall, where tourists used to drop coins into his highly polished boots, providing useful beer money. At the outbreak of war, he was too young to go to France with the BEF and was put in charge of the horse lines in Windsor Great Park. He subsequently volunteered to join No 8 Commando, and after rigorous training in Scotland he formed part of a detachment that landed at Tobruk in 1941. On the night of July 17 he took part in an attack on a feature known as the Twin Pimples, a defensive strongpoint held by the Italians which dominated the Allied lines. The defenders spotted the Commandos, but they were firing on fixed lines and the bullets passed over the heads of the attacking force as they crept towards their objective. Schofield said afterwards that they had gone in with fixed bayonets and that the fight was “short and bloody”. Just when they thought that they had cleared the trenches, Schofield found the door of a concealed hatch. The Italians had constructed shelters underneath where more troops were hiding. As he lifted up the door, a bayonet was thrust upwards which wounded him in the hand. Someone hurled a grenade into the shelter and he had to jump clear to avoid being killed in the explosion. After the order was given to withdraw, they set off across the desert. Discovering that a great friend of his, Jackie Maynard, was missing, Schofield turned back and found Maynard, who had an abdominal wound. Schofield carried him to base under continual fire, but Maynard died. Schofield always regretted that he had not been able to stay with him. Schofield was then selected for an undercover mission in Turkey. The country was neutral, but there were fears that Axis forces might try to take over. Ostensibly supervising a team of engineers, his actual job was to lay explosive charges under strategically important bridges in Cappadocia. To his surprise, he discovered that charges had been laid by the Germans in the First World War and were already in place. His task became the simpler one of checking the explosives and adding to them or replacing them where necessary. After being wounded in Germany, Schofield spent 10 months in plaster. Following a spell as parachute instructor at the Airborne forces depot, in 1947 he was posted to 21 SAS as a permanent staff instructor. He served with “D” Squadron 22 SAS in Malaya (1953-55), returning there as RSM and serving from 1957 to 1959. Between those two postings, he was RSM of 21 SAS. He returned to England as RSM of 23 SAS. In 1965 Schofield was commissioned into 22 SAS as a captain, based at Hereford, and eventually became quartermaster. His tour of duty ended in 1971, but he extended his service until 1979 as a Retired Officer. He was appointed MBE in 1969. Schofield was an active member of the SAS Association and was tireless in organising visits to France to lay wreaths on the graves of those members of the SAS who had been killed (and, in some

instances, executed) there. In retirement he enjoyed gardening, fishing and family life. Joe Schofield married, in 1947, Sheelagh Ledwith, who survives him with their two sons and two daughters.

WO1 RA McGloughlin Late The Life Guards by Mick Williams (CoH, LG 1965-1974) Bob McGloughlin, who died in March 2012 after a long illness, joined The Life Guards in 1964. In a career spanning 22 years he saw service in many overseas countries including Cyprus, Borneo and Germany as well as Northern Ireland. He held a number of instructor posts before finally leaving the Army in 1986 as a WO1. He will be remembered by all his comrades with affection and pride. Bob’s annual report no doubt recorded that he was a credit to himself and the Regiment, a soldier who enjoyed the respect of his peers and subordinates alike. But he always retained his social graces, humanity, wit and humour. Bob never failed to acknowledge those he knew and always addressed them by their rank and name when on duty. He was a man who expected high standards from those who served with him, and nothing less from himself. My vivid memories of Bob go back 42 years when we were both Corporals of Horse on mounted duty at Knightsbridge but we were drawn together as much by sport as by military duties. Playing Regimental rugby we used to travel by the Regiment’s minibus all over the Home Counties to play our fixtures. On one occasion we set off a man short. On arrival Bob’s leadership qualities quickly came to the fore as he, shall we say, “persuaded” the MT driver, an overweight and very unfit Lance Corporal in The Blues and Royals, into playing for us on the wing, even though he had never picked up a rugby ball in his life before. I don’t think the poor chap ever fully recovered from the ordeal and the experience must surely have deterred him from ever playing rugby again. Bob taught me to play squash, at Knightsbridge. I never amounted to much on the squash court but that was no reflection on Bob’s coaching skills. He always beat me, but I always thought I could even the score when we played tennis at Burton Court in Chelsea on Wednesday afternoons in the summer, but that never worked out either. Bob always insisted on absolute silence from my end of the Court when he was serving. However, when I served he performed a kind of running commentary, based on impressions of the Wimbledon commentators of the day; Bob’s devastating attempt at gamesmanship. I usually let him win most matches. It was worth it because the walk back to Barracks with him in the heat afterwards was too miserable to contemplate if he lost. After these games, I would have liked to visit one of the local hostelries either The George IV, The Bunch of Grapes or The Paxton’s Head or even all three, but Bob always opted, in fact demanded, that we partake of a cream tea in ‘Gloriette’s’, a rather posh teashop on the Brompton Road. So there we sat, a couple of 15 stone, sweaty soldiers in tennis kit amongst the twin sets and pearls of the dowager duchesses of Knightsbridge. You could say, I suppose, we stuck out, but that added

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greatly to the fun for Bob and he enjoyed it enormously. And it seems that tea was a bit of a theme for him. Recounted by another of his colleagues is the oiccasion when Bob served Earl Grey Tea and tinned rich fruit cake ( Army rations, of course) to a rather bewildered American Platoon Commander in the frozen North of Norway on an exercise. On another occasion Bob traded red wine from an Italian contingent, insisting that it be served with an impromptu dinner at ‘turret’ temperature. If ever there was humour in a situation then McGloughlin could find it. But it was his skill as a mimic that set him apart and my Birmingham accent was an easy target, though he usually saved his heavy fire for Household Division officers and the stories are legion. There are those who say that his impersonation of the then Colonel Desmond Langley sounded more like Desmond Langley than Desmond Langley. It made me laugh then and the memory of it still does. Bob McGloughlin was a dear friend to me. His subversive sense of humour, his ever sharp wit, his wide-ranging interests, firmly-held opinions and above all his integrity and courage, will live long in my memory and I suspect in the memories of many other Life Guards, of all ranks, who had the privilege of knowing him. Editorial note. Following injury to the Squadron Corporal Major when with B Squadron in Northern Ireland in Dungannon in March 1977, the then SQMC Bob McGloughlin was promoted to acting WO2 and took over. His pride in his new role, and the relish with which he took on the challenge were matched only by the admiration of all ranks. [He had led the cooks, LAD, waiters and squadron HQ through their training and turned them into an effective fourth rifle troop which he christened “The Bunco Squad”]. He was capably professional, was a fund of funny stories, and had excellent modern man management skills, though he had previous knowledge of the dark arts. He told a story of many moons before of his first encounter with his new troop on promotion to Lance Corporal. This stout band of fellows were keen to assert their authority over the new Cpl. So LCpl McGloughlin chose the biggest problem, demanding that he alone come round the back of the building with him. But Bob was first to the shovel that he had placed there earlier, and the problem was sorted out. The young Cpl then walked round the building pretending to dust down his knuckles, asked if there were any more questions, and the troop melted away as good little lambs.

Derrick Pattinson 1931-2012 Late The Life Guards by Captain Derek Stratford LG Derrick was born on the 14th September 1931 near Loweswater Lake at the home of his grandfather. His early education was at Loweswater School and the two mile walk was through the wood that his grandfather planted and tended. During this time Derrick’s parents worked a number of small farms from Distington to Eskdale. This was a very happy time for Derrick and one of his memories was delivering milk to Lord Rea of Gate House on his way to school.

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On leaving school in 1945 Derrick became an apprentice painter and decorator in Whitehaven which involved a long cycle and bus ride to arrive at work by 8am six days a week; all for 18 shillings a week from which he had to pay six shillings bus fares. The remainder he handed over to his mother. After only a year Derrick was needed back at the farm. Just before Christmas 1949 Derrick went into the Army Recruiting Office in Workington to join the RASC hoping for a job in transport. Little did he know that the recruiting sergeant received three pounds ten shillings (£3.50p) for every Household Cavalry recruit and Derrick was persuaded to join The Life Guards, a turning point in Derrick’s life. On the 15th January 1950 Derrick arrived at Knightsbridge Barracks for interview and then on to Windsor for basic training which included a driving and maintenance course. The Life Guards at that time were a basic training unit. After training and two weeks leave Derrick was informed that he was posted to the ‘College’ to be a driving instructor a job he thoroughly enjoyed. By mid 1951 the Regiment was reactivated as a service Regiment and commenced training in radio and gunnery skills in preparation for its move to Germany. During his tour with the Regiment in Germany Derrick became a fully qualified D&M instructor and was promoted to full corporal. In 1953 the Regiment went on embarkation leave prior to its deployment in the Canal Zone. Derrick spent his leave at his mother’s house in Ulverston and on the 18th December went to a dance at Cranston Hall. A young lady asked him to dance. Derrick was smitten and after only 14 days Jenny and Derrick were married at Ulverston Registry Office; a marriage that lasted for 56 years until Jenny’s sad passing. On arriving in Egypt Derrick was promoted to Corporal of Horse after only 4 years in the Regiment, probably one of the youngest CsoH ever. Unfortunately there were very few married quarters in the Canal Zone and a flat was found for Jenny in Victoria London. In late 1955 Derrick returned to the UK to attend a gunnery course in Lulworth and was able to visit Jenny every weekend. He passed with flying colours and was kept on as a School’s Instructor for 4 very happy years. He was then promoted to Warrant Officer and posted to the RAC Training Regiment in Catterick for a further three years in charge of gunnery training. During this time Jenny gave birth to Jean in 1956 and Ann in 1958. After his tour in Catterick Derrick returned to The Life Guards who were now in Malaysia. Once again there were no married quarters immediately available and Jenny followed on sometime later. She arrived very late one night in December only to find that Derrick was to be collected at 4.00am the following morning to catch a C 130 bound for Australia. Derrick was to spend the next three months teaching the Australian Armoured Corps the Chieftain Tank before their deployment in Vietnam. The journey back to Malaysia was rather a roundabout one cadging lifts from whoever was willing to give him a ride. First Perth in Western Australia, then the Cocos (Keeling) Islands and on to Penang. All were very long flights and apart from the taxi ride to Seremban he had to pay nothing - probably one of the longest hitch hikes ever! In 1961 the Regiment was split with one Squadron going to Hong Kong and the others to Singapore. Derrick became the Officers’ Mess Steward and there he stayed until he left the Regiment in January 1968. During his service Derrick worked in the ‘Pits’ for Colonel Baillie at the 24 hour Le Mans and the 1000Km race at the Nurburgring. He was a member of the Toyota rallying team as a navigator winning several competitions.


During his civilian life Derrick tried his hand at many adventures, mostly in the transport industry until one day an old army chum asked him to take a job in the Middle East. His answer is unprintable until he was told the salary. “When can we go”, he said. After a year teaching Saudi soldiers how to use guided missiles he moved to Muscat doing the same thing for the next two years. Returning home he was able to purchase his bungalow outright and set up a business, teaching the carriage of dangerous cargo. They both retired on Jenny’s 70th birthday and Derrick was heard to say, ”Quite a life, never dull and my best friends are those I served with in the Regiment.” To Jean and Ann, it was an honour to have your Dad, ‘Black Pat’, as a friend.

CoH Michael John Robertson Late The Life Guards by Major (Retd) John Lodge, formerly The Life Guards Mick was born on the 4th March 1946 and joined The Life Guards on 30th November 1970. Marrying Shirley in July 1967 and his daughter Tracy arriving in 1968, Mick went to Pirbright to do his basic training joining the Regiment on its first tour to Germany on Chieftain in Detmold. Joining the Regiment late in comparison to most he was always the one that the younger members of the Squadron could turn to for advice. Throughout his career Mick was always the one who remained calm seeing both sides of a story giving good sound advice. That said, Mick was a bit of a rebel in the early days, not afraid to speak his mind if something was not right. We first met in 1972 when training for Northern Ireland; we were both in 6 Troop which was stationed on the Maidstone. Attending the same search course in Sennelager we started working together in preparation for our first trip to Northern Ireland. The training was hard but enjoyable Mick took a real liking to being a member of the search team and had a reputation for being thorough. The results once we deployed were excellent, to say the least, with a large amount of weapons and explosives being taken out of circulation. Throughout the tour Mick always had a smile on his face taking everything in his stride. Knightsbridge in 1975 saw Mick start out on another part of his service; Mick always had a love for the mounted life, appreciating every aspect that it brought. Riding on the Royal Wedding in July 1981 was one of Mick’s proudest moments, particularly as one of the photographs taken of him riding on the wheel of the carriage was used as a backdrop on a number of tourist souvenirs, his most treasured being a Tea Tray which he would give out to visitors.

and NCOs’ Mess Manager at a time when there was a lot of turmoil with the move to Germany, preparation for the Gulf, and the return of the Regiment after its short tour to form the Union. Throughout all this Mick always kept the Mess in a pristine condition ensuring that at all times the Mess was somewhere its members were proud to bring their family and guests. On our return from the Gulf it was determined that we would maintain normality and ensure that our last Christmas in Germany would be a good one. As always the tree was to be the centrepiece marking the start of the festivities; Mick and his 2i/c LCoH Rosborough were to get a tree and make sure it was a good one. So inviting some German Forestry workers they knew to the Mess for tea and a bun they negotiated for a large Christmas Tree, with a bottle of Johnny Walker as the price. The tree arrived and a waiter walked into the Mess and told Mick that it was outside. Mick told the waiter to bring the tree into the Mess. The waiter replied ‘we will need some help CoH, the crane is unloading it from the truck’, Mick walked out to look and a tree fit for Trafalgar Square was being unloaded by a monster vehicle. Lesson learned : get a German speaker in next time. They cut the thing down to size so it would actually fit in the door and made cheese platters from sections of it for the Christmas Ball. Mick was never afraid to turn his hand to something new. Learning picture framing skills meant that Mick could do a lot of work for the Mess, this he did not only with keenness but with pride, saying to me that you could always judge a Regiment by the standards in the Mess. Visitors would always comment on the standard of pictures in the Mess and how it was nice to see the history portrayed. Mick was well liked throughout his time in the Regiment, popular with all and always willing to help, and a great support and friend. Mick passed away on the 28th May 2012 leaving his wife Shirley, daughter Tracy and his grandchildren Alex and Adam.

LCoH Nick Hunt Late The Life Guards Sad news came to Home Headquarters of the death of former LCoH NJM Hunt. He died in a road traffic accident in Iraq on Friday 3rd March 2012, aged 41. Nick Hunt had been an energetic JNCO, a hard taskmaster PTI with a sense of humour who relished serving at both the mounted and service Regiments. Nick worked for several years in the private security industry and very tragically was killed while on duty in Iraq. He served from 1990 until 2004 leaving from Hyde Park Barracks. As can be seen from the photograph he loved his family.

Having passed his Crew Commanders Course Mick took on the role as a Chieftain tank commander in A Squadron; he could be often seen making his way across Soltau having the uncanny knack of remaining clean whilst all others attracted dirt and grease. On one particular occasion he attached himself to the back of a B Squadron convoy, then pitching his tent with them for the night. In the morning, once realising his error, he was up and giving a victory circuit before disappearing into the mist. Towards the end of his career Mick took on the role of WOs’

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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: homehq@householdcavalry.co.uk E-Mail for Secretary LG Assn is: dhwalsh@householdcavalry.co.uk E-Mail for Secretary RHG/D Assn is: paul.stretton@householdcavalry.co.uk 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.

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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

Household Cavalry Information site run by Peter Ashman: www.householdcavalry.info

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.

1st Royal Dragoons www.1stroyaldragoons.org Contact Mr John Atkins e-mail: john.richard67@blueyonder.co.uk Tel: 01952 813647

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 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 web site at: www. householdcavalrymuseum.org.uk Websites The Household Cavalry Foundation Website should be available from early 2013 and you may find details here: http://www.hcavfoundation.org/ 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 Web site 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 dhwalsh@householdcavalry.co.uk. 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 former Household Cavalrymen. To register follow the link above.

Household Calvary Association - Dorset Squadron Dorsetsquadron@aol.com

The Queen’s Birthday Parade & Reviews The Queen’s Birthday Parade will be held on Saturday 15th June 2013 (Welsh Guards Colours) with the Colonel’s Review on 8th June and the Major General’s Review on 1st 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 89th Combined Cavalry Old Comrades Parade and Service will be held in Hyde Park on Sunday 12th May 2013. 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 veterans.help@spva.gsi.gov.uk


Royal Windsor Visitors Information Bureau Enquiries: 01753 743900 Accommodation: 01753 743907

(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

information and full contact details for regional offices telephone the Head Office on 01372 841600 or visit their website at: www.combatstress.com

www.windsor.gov.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.

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

windsor.accommodation@rbwm.gov.uk

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 ‘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. Contact Details: ESHRA, The Royal British Legion, 48 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ZR. Tel: 0207 839 4466. eshra@britishlegion.org.uk 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

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

www.ssafa.org.uk/volunteering.html

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 www.ssafa.org.uk/housing.html

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

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

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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

M

The Veterans Oyster Photocard You can travel free at any time using your Veterans Oyster photocard on:

- 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

Bus - Travel free at any time on buses within London Tube, tram, DLR and London Overground showing the TFL symbol

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

You can apply for a Veterans Oyster photocard if you are: •

Receiving ongoing payments under the War Pensions Scheme in your name (this includes widows, widowers and dependants)

Or receiving Guaranteed Income Payment under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme in your name (this includes widows, widowers and dependants)

Transport for London will not issue a Veterans Oyster photocard if you live in London and are eligible for the Freedom Pass. Visit http://www.tfl.gov.uk/ tickets/14424.aspx or Oyster photocard team on 0845 331 9872 for further details and application.

The Middle East Guards Association

ajor (Retd) Jan de Haldevang, formerly Scots Guards is the Secretary of the Middle East Guards Association, abbreviated to MEGA. He would be keen to hear from any former Household Cavalrymen working in the Middle East should they wish to join. Formed in 2000, originally in Muscat with just 6, it is an association for serving or retired members of the Household Division resident/working or with a proven regular interest in the Middle East. The aims of the Association are to: •

Archive (formerly the Public Record Office) and are available for public access.

develop and maintain a social and business network;

support new Household Division arrivals in the region;

support Household Division and British Army training teams or exercises;

support Household events and charities.

Division

Presently they have some 200 members of which about 12 are Household Cavalrymen. They have a presence on LinkedIn and Facebook where much contact flows in from UK visitors, aspirants and job seekers.

The 2013 MEGA Dinner will take place in Dubai on Thu 16 May 2013. Those wishing to join the Association and attend should send an email to Jan at: jdeh_bahrain@hotmail.com He reports that they have a small group within MEGA who have agreed to be career/job seeking networkers (many have placed H Div applicants). Approaches from serious searchers, with decent CVs and a proven Middle East portfolio, should make their approach through Maj de Haldevang.

Household Cavalry Association - Dorset www.householdcavalryassociationdorset.com

Email: Dorsetsquadron@aol.com 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

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Secretary and Treasurer John Triggs BEM - formerly The Blues and Royals Committee 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

The North wind do blow and we be have snow” and we had our share on Dorset Squadron with the arrival of 2012. It was agreed to manage the 31st year to the same pattern as it’s predecessors and so the cunning plan was dusted down and the dates changed to protect the year!


for their hospitality and wine glasses! The main event of the year was the Annual Dinner weekend; we were very honoured to have Maj General Tim and Sulivan CB CBE BSc as our Guest of Honour. The Hotel Celebrity was nearly full on the Friday night of 13th October; just as well we had taken over the complete hotel! The weekend started on Friday evening when we sat down to an a 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 £151 for the HCOCF – very well done Marty, and Minnie the Moocher will never be the same again! Saturday was free for shopping in Bournemouth but, as Rear row (L-R): Mr Ray Peck, The Earl of Normanton, Maj Gen Tim Sulivan CB CBE, Alistair Wood LVO MBE opposed to previous years, the Front Row (L-R): Mrs Caroline Wood, Mrs Paula Peck, Mrs Jane Sulivan post-breakfast inter-pier swim Dutymen: Tpr Uatakibav RHG/D and Tpr Lugg LG did attract one taker – well done Susanne Maskell! The January newsletter reminded Our Gentlemen Trumpeters, Messrs, Sid members of the Spring Dinner and Dodson, Bruce Worthy and Steve Hyett The dinner venue had changed this year Dance with the added attraction of Phil announced the dinner to much applause in favour of a more local hotel and so (Sinatra of the Year) Fisk entertaining and satisfaction. Phil Fisk provided a the AGM and Dinner were held at the us in aid of the HCOCF. The Winter superb Elvis impersonation and some Queens Hotel and Spa in Bournemouth, Warmer Draw, (WW12), is now an great singing – and he really looked a mere 100 yards away from the integral part of this event and again the part! £140 was raised by the bucket Celebrity and quite negotiable on hands thanks to the generosity of the hotel’s shake for the HCOCF and all were and knees for the return trip! Saturday we use there was the opportunity to well fed and entertained. As the night evening commenced with the AGM win holiday breaks in Bournemouth was St Patricks Day – a brief but silly and presided over by the President, and support the running costs of the session was enjoyed by all in an Irish Lord Normanton, who welcomed all Annual Dinner at the same time. As style celebration with party poppers, to the meeting and handed over to the with previous year’s the profits from streamers, blow outs and paper hats – Chairman, Ray Peck. This was the five the Winter Warmer Draw, the annual green in colour of course! year turnover of the position of the three Balloon Race and the Annual Draw go to Association officers and as there were no offset the costs of the annual dinner and In May members marched with their nominations, the same bodies continue that allows members to enjoy the event regiments through Hyde Park as part till January 2018! So Peck, Triggs and at a reduced price to the actual costs. of the Combined Cavalry Memorial Triggs continue. Again, photographs Mr Peter and Mrs Allison Hulland were Parade; this preceded the annual act of with the Dutymen were available and it married in January – very best wishes to remembrance at the Hyde Park Bombing was good to see Tpr Lugg LG on parade the happy couple and they have started Memorial in South Carriage Drive – son of member Steve and Cathy their new life together in Portugal. where Mr Barry Woodley again laid the Lugg from Ferndown! ‘Mess Call’ was wreath on behalf of the Association. sounded by the Gentlemen Trumpeters February saw the Vice President George and that set diners off to table. Once Dugdale and his wife, Janet, celebrate Come September the Committee met the top table were welcomed and their 50th Wedding Anniversary and at the Chairman’s house to launch the Grace uttered, and again our very own we extended our congratulations to Annual Balloon Race. This was also the Gentlemen Trumpeters, Messrs Steve them both on this special occasion. Jack annual excuse to test the quality of the Hyett and Bruce Worthy, roused the Clarke MBE (our man in Wiltshire) and proposed wine for the Annual Dinner. appetite with a fanfare ‘Call to Battle’ his wife Jean, celebrates his eightieth The winning balloon was found near to which was, as ever, note perfect and an birthday on the 25th of March this the Ashford in Kent, at a pub car park absolutely splendid performance. year and the young couple have been in Broughton Abbas. The winner of the married sixty years. Well done both! £150 prize was Nigel Browning (call me The President announced the message Ni), from North London – who bought of Loyal Greeting to Her Majesty, and March came in with tidy weather and the ticket ‘from some bloke in Wales!’ read Her Majesty’s gracious reply and 66 members, their ladies and guests – yes – Tony Prynne! The £10 finder’s proposed the Loyal Toast. Being the gathered at the Hotel Celebrity in fee went to Master James Conner of Diamond Jubilee year we celebrated Bournemouth with the Friday night Ashford. Again our sincere thanks to Her Majesty by way of a souvenir ‘Meet n Greet’ dinner and disco. This set Lord Normanton for under-writing the tot glass and a bottle of not half bad the tone for the next night and the main total costs of the event and providing a Port per table! The Chairman then event – the Spring Dinner and Dance. bit of sport; also to Ray and Paula Peck The Top Table for the 31st Annual Dinner and Dance

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introduced the Guest of Honour who gave a sharp informative insight into modern soldiering punctuated with good humour and food for thought too. He concluded with a toast to the Household Cavalry which was roundly joined – more port! After a brief welfare break, diners took their seats again and the Secretary introduced the Chairman of the HCOCF, Alistair Wood LVO MBE, who gave a short but salient talk about the aims, objectives and purpose of the reintegration strategy of the HCOCF which many members found both timely and informative. This was followed by another tremendous auction which raised a Grand Total of £1561.00. Auction

completed, it was time to dance the remainder of the night away and – finish off that port! Sincere thanks from the Association and well done all! As a tally note, over the last five years the Dorset Squadron collectively has raised over £13,600.00 for the HCOCF and a great big slice of thank you goes to the membership for their support and enthusiasm to the charity over the years. To round the year off we held our Christmas Lunch at the Hotel Celebrity on Sunday 9th December. A pleasant winter’s day made for a most enjoyable relaxed lunch and we sat down 35 to a traditional fine dining affair The Annual Draw was again very kindly drew out by Erin and Holly, the grand-daughters of Mrs Anne O’Gorman and a splendid

job they did too. And a very special note of thanks to Tony Prynne who this year has sold over £500.00 of draw and balloon tickets on behalf and to the benefit of the Association, a truly superb effort and absolute hours of dedication. 2012 had more twists and turns than a guardsman on payday night, the Regiment’s performed exceptionally well and we hope 2013 will in some ways be less frantic – the Helmand tour will be testing and we hope and pray for a successful job well done and all a safe return home. Much celebration was experienced in the Diamond Jubilee Olympic year and we now look forward to 2013 when we will maintain the very best traditions of the Household Cavalry.

Household Cavalry Association North Staffs Branch 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

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nother head count showed that all members had made it through the winter at our first of the year’s meetings. Although our usual meeting venue was locked up and in darkness, a quick phone call and we moved rapidly to the security of our events hotel. It appears a power failure had caused temporary closure of our usual meeting place. We were sad to hear of the loss of one of our members from North Yorkshire, Mr Doug Gillam who was a former Royal and although living some distance from us, he and his wife were regular attendees at our annual dinner. The AGM at the March meeting. was chaired by our Branch Vice President Peter Thellusson and former officers were re-elected. We were given an update of our serving colleagues passed on from our President. Our first Social Evening of the year was held in April when members took their wives out for a pleasant meal at our adopted hotel, with much conversa-

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tion and the inevitable raffle. In May a number of us made our annual visit to London for The Blues and Royals Association dinner followed on the Sunday morning by the Combined Cavalry Memorial Parade. The “Waterloo weekend” at Alrewas was well attended with a service at The Blues and Royals Memorial Garden on the Sunday morning conducted by our Branch Chaplain. She is always booked one year in advance to be sure it’s in her diary before other appointments. We held our second Social evening at the end of July.

ior person booked to perform the deed, and the Secretary liaising with Maj Paul Stretton to organise a guest list and buffet without the knowledge of the NMA staff who would have imposed a charge. The fact that the Secretary and others were on site nearly every day for over a week making good the poor maintenance was not thought suspicious! The day of the Dedication Service arrived with the weather forecasted for rain in the afternoon. The Memorial Garden had been waterlogged most of the summer but had dried out enough for the Secretary to do a final cut of the grass a few days previously; although damp, was not unpleasant to walk on.

After many years work and planning by members to have The Blues and Royals Memorial Garden at the National Memorial Arboretum (NMA) officially The NMA staff at the Visitors Centre dedicated, a Service took place on 2 Ocwere curious as to why so many people tober. It had been hoped that ceremony were asking for the location of The Blues would have been attended by the Coloand Royals Memorial Garden, but our nel of The Blues and Royals unfortuplan was really exposed when a trumnately, the NMA costs associated with peter from The Blues and Royals Band having a member of the Royal Family walked in! Last to arrive was Lt Gen Sir in attendance prevented The Blues and Barney White-Spunner KCB CBE, but Royals Association from arranging for presence of HRH The Princess Lt Gen Sir Barney White-Spunner and Revd Ann Taylor conduct the Dedication Service at The Blues and Royals Memorial Garden Royal. The associated costs for any ceremony or service raised by the NMA meant a bit of discretion was needed when organizing a suitable event. Behind the scenes arrangements had been going on so as not to alert the staff as to our intentions. It truly was a military operation with a sen-


Attendees at the Dedication Service

by then we had a good many guests at the Memorial Garden and the Dedication Service was quickly under way. We were pleased to see several members of The Blues and Royals Association including the Chairman, Col Toby Browne LVO and the Honorary Secretary Maj Paul Stretton. Family members and widows of some of our fallen colleagues were also able to attend. The service was conducted by the Revd Ann Taylor with a dedication talk by General Sir Barney. As this year was the 25th anniversary

The Dedicated Plaque

we planned a little extra for our anniversary dinner in October. We had a full house for 25th Anniversary Annual dinner on l9th October. It was a pleasure to have Mr Alistair Wood LVO, MBE from the Household Cavalry Operational Casualties Fund as our guest speaker to give us an insight into the workings of the charity and talk about his new venture. He was presented with a cheque as our annual donation. The Secretary proposed an anniversary toast, to celebrate the end of the first 25 years and the start of the next 25 years! All the ladies received a large box of

chocolates and the gentlemen a key ring with a Household Cavalry cipher applied. The end of dinner raffle brought in a record amount, our ticket seller has learned well! Our Christmas Dinner early in December brought an end to another year. We had our friends from the local Riding for the Disabled present and we were able to present them with a well deserved donation. So ends another very full year, we wish all our members, colleagues, serving and retired success in everything you do in 2013.

The 1st Royal Dragoons Reunion by Mr John Atkins, formerly The 1st Royal Dragoons

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he Annual Reunion of the members of the 1st Royal Dragoons was held again at the Fradley Arms, Nr Lichfield, on the 16 and17 June 2012. We were unable to hold the service on the Sunday morning at the NMA owing to the poor weather and the site being too wet, fortunately the manager of the Fradley Arms kindly allowed us to use the Conference Room to hold the service which was conducted again by the Rev

Ann Taylor wife of Mr Ian Taylor, Secretary of the Household Cavalry Association, N Staffs Branch. After the service a presentation of a bouquet of flowers was made to Rev Taylor, and presentations were made to Ian Taylor (as a Thank You for driving his wife each year for the service) and Barry Dolphin for his contribution of a new Waterloo Banner.

John Atkins and Capt Peter Thelluson Vice President of the Household Cavalry Association, N Staffs Branch

Tankard presented to Barry Dolphin A wreath laid in memory of Derek Leese at the NMA

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Household Cavalry Association North East President Capt (Retd) Peter Townley - formerly The Blues and Royals Chairman/Secretary Mr Ken Rowe - formerly Royal Horse Guards

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nce again the year started with our Annual Dinner on 27th April. On the top table were the guest Chairman, Lt Col GGE Stibbe OBE, LG, The Mayor and Mayoress of the City of Sunderland, our President, Capt (Retd) Peter Townley, ex-WO2 Paul and Mrs Diane Thomas, ex- SCpl Adrian (Gunner) and Mrs Julie Mardon, CoH and Mrs Andy Phelan, and completing the line-up, yours truly Ken and Mrs Pat Rowe. Since the Dinner, Andy Phelan has left the Regiment and is now doing a university foundation degree course in Working with Young People – good luck for the future Andy. During the year there was a visit to the City of Sunderland Mayor’s Parlour to present him with our Honorary Member Certificate as well as a framed certificate commemorating the Royal Horse Guards, The 1st Royal Dragoons and The Blues and Royals 350th anniversary. This certificate will be displayed along with other items of uniform currently on show, including cuirasses, two helmets, gauntlets, and belts. The items are cleaned several times a year and I would like to thank Mr Denis Sayers BEM LG and Mr Ken Wright RHG for doing this on our behalf. Several members paraded at Eden Camp, North Yorkshire, at the annual Veteran’s Day parade. At the 2012 Remembrance parade in Sunderland there were over 90 Standards and several hundred Veterans with Paul Thomas and Adrian Mardon on parade for the first time; this parade was our best supported yet. Our contingent was led by our President, Capt (Retd) Peter Townley, and we marched off with the Standard escorted by two Dutymen from HCMR. I would like to thank CoH Dave Ansell who carried our Standard, in the absence, due to illness, of Geoff McInerney. Sadly, we lost one of our longest supporting members, Mr Eric Simonsen, who died in December. Eric had attended our Dinners for many years and

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Branch Members (from left): Mr Dennis Sayer, Mr Ken Rowe, Mr Ken Wright, Mr David Horsfield

will be greatly missed. Good luck to the Regiment with the forthcoming tour of Afghanistan.

For information about the Household Cavalry Association (North East), please telephone: 0191 527 3029.


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Features 30 Years On – All At Sea with Grey Funnel Lines by Maj (Retd) PF Stretton (formerly The Blues and Royals)

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0 years ago 1982 was an eventful year for The Blues and Royals. The spring of which saw A Squadron in Cyprus, C Squadron on block leave, and only B Squadron at Combermere. On 2nd April half of B Squadron was on Easter leave, while squadron headquarters and two troops were loaded up for a Warminster exercise when the news was broadcast of the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands. On 4th April Lt Col Hamilton-Russell was instructed to have two reconnaissance troops, each with two Scorpions and two Scimitars, and a REME light aid detachment (a Samson recovery vehicle under a sergeant), standing by, the vehicles to be ready for embarkation at Southampton on 6th April. The constraints of availability reduced the choice to two. They were those commanded by Lieutenant Lord Robin Innes-Ker (3 Troop) and Lieutenant MR Coreth (4 Troop). I was dispatched to Southampton as 4 Tp CoH on 5th April to secure accommodation on a ship for the arrival of 3 and 4 Troops. As one of the smallest detachments of the Task Force, making ourselves heard and known was not going to be easy however, whilst onboard SS Canberra (which saw it’s maiden voyage in 1961) I was invited on that first night to a planning meeting by HQ 3 Commando Brigade staff. I was asked “if we had ever fired our vehicles from the front of a landing craft? We have a plan to stick your “tanks” at the front of landing craft with a company of either RM or Para behind you and for you to fire as the ramp door goes down on an opposed landing!” This was at odds with the hasty brief I had received in Windsor which was “The Troops will probably be on the 5th or 6th waves, mopping up!” Mopping up has suddenly turned into scrape the polish off the floor; relay the polish before you use the manual floor bumper.

Merchant Vessel Elk

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the elevated surround, while waiters (complete with earrings/studs and nonmilitary idiosyncrasies) hovered dealing with our every need. The ships lounge, which became the WOs’ and SNCOs’ Mess offered only the best in cocktails and beer at about 40p a pint!

Somewhere in the Atlantic: CoH Stretton, LCoH Ward, Tprs Flynn, Widdowson,Tucker, Fuggat and a company of Royal Marines on a landing craft with SS Canberra in the background

The Blues and Royals detachment sailed on 9th April. The vehicles, with the late CoH Stuart Thomson as IC and small maintenance party on MV Elk: the remainder on board SS Canberra. The send-off onboard from the regiment is something I know the Royal Marines and Paras will never forget; there’s something to the old saying, “If you’re not Cav, then you’re not!” as all our the senior regimental officers and the RCM bade us farewell in breeches, highly polished riding boots, spurs, Sam Brownes and riding crops, a perfect demonstration. I received a personal invitation to ensure “sideburns came no further down than the centre of the ear and moustaches no lower than the line of the lips”. Canberra had been requisitioned by the MoD for the operation, although it didn’t prevent plywood being laid over all carpets and only training shoes being worn below deck in case “we left marks on the ship”. The majority of the ship’s civilian crew stayed in place and meal times were a surreal experience where officers sat in the centre of a luxury dining room, the WOs and SNCOs sat on

SS Canberra

There was great rivalry aboard amongst RM and 3 Para over fitness, hardness and which was the toughest course P Company or Commando? 3 Para became our guardians but couldn’t understand why we didn’t run round the promenade deck 25 hours a day and declined their offer to join them for PT and a spot of milling. Throughout the sailing towards the Equator we managed to get on boats and helicopters to “cross deck” onto MV Elk to carry out limited vehicle maintenance and ensure our small on board team had not gone “native” Canberra stopped at Freetown, Sierra Leone on 17th April, and next at Ascension Island on 20th April where it joined the rest of the Task Force fleet. Much to our relief, this provided the first opportunity to get our feet on land and under canvas where we boresighted (first time on firm level ground), test fired our weapons, both on a hastily built range and out at sea from landing craft and practicing beach landings with RM’s and the Para’s.

CVR(T) Scimitar firing at Ascension Island

On one occasion we rejoined the vehicles on the landing craft from the side of Canberra. This drill was exacerbated by being carried out in total darkness, having first negotiated the illuminated bowels of the ship to a hatchway that allowed a one man passage to the sea. There’s something a bit disconcerting looking into total darkness, from near the bottom of a ship, in the middle of an ocean, laden with equipment, knowing


a water shortage, although we weren’t convinced as we were surrounded by the stuff. A mail run continued with a C130 aircraft dropping a couple of pallet loads into the Atlantic by parachute, fortunately recovered safely; this proved a big boost to morale.

On the Tank Deck of HMS Fearless HMS Fearless

that there’s a gap, a landing craft going up and down with the swell of the sea (none of which you can see) and a Royal Marine tactically whispering when he considers it marginally safe for you to jump from ship to the landing craft he is driving. We then said goodbye to Elk and Canberra and went aboard HMS Fearless and the start of the Grey Funnel Line experience which apart from a three week break, didn’t end before we got back to Portsmouth on 14th July. The first night aboard Fearless was eventful to say the least as sleep was broken with the sound of klaxons, alarms and tannoy calls of “This is not a drill”. Being the only Army personnel onboard it was confusing, disorientating and alarming; everyone (less us) was dressed in anti-flash masks and gloves and all seemed to have a purpose or a job to do. The two officers were in rooms (cabins) somewhere on the ship, the three SNCOs were in a room/cabin (mess deck) with about 25 beds (bunks) three high and the troops were on the Tank Deck; the open and exposed part of the ship where four landing craft were berthed. The only other occupant of our mess deck, a RN senior rank, had escaped his sleeping bag and was outside quicker than a quick thing before we had formally been introduced. Having bumbled down corridors (passageways) out of the “citadel” on to the flight deck, back inside, past damage repair crews and firemen, we eventually worked out that any “Pongos” (a naval term of endearment for Army personnel who it is believed do not carry out ablutions or laundry duties on the same frequency as Jolly Jack Tar) should nervously gather (muster) on the floor of the dining room (galley) awaiting direction (D’you hear there!). It would appear that an unidentified ship had sailed near the anchored Task Force and possible enemy divers had now been detected close by; obvious thoughts of the Argentinean version of Commander Crabbe with explosives

and a large magnet came to mind. RN divers were in the galley getting wetsuited up, armed with the biggest daggers and the shiniest spear guns that I have ever seen, all with a view to going over the side, I assumed not to meet Hans and Lottie Haas. We were informed by the ship’s Captain over the tannoy that sudden loud bangs on the hull were “scare charges” being deployed to deter any enemy divers – well that’s alright then. No enemy divers were detected and on 7th May HMS Fearless set sail towards the Falkland Islands. Life onboard Fearless was strange to say the least, there were first parades (musters) on the flight deck in almost total darkness and a roaring sea that refused to accept that we should “stand still”. The actual time was changed almost daily to tie in with GMT however, meal times were fairly rigid. We moved to “Action Messing” a euphemism to mean having only lumpy stodgy stew in an issued plastic mug because the galley boilers had been turned off in case of attack. A clever idea was to put the ship’s laundry, run by Chinese crew members, right at the pointy bit (bow) at the bottom of the ship (below); with all hatches closed less a small entry (in case of flooding). Getting there with an issued “once only suit” (don’t ask, but it was attached to us like the gas mask boxes for small children during the Blitz) was more than difficult. The large movements of the ship going through the Roaring Forties didn’t help and if you’ve never suffered motion sickness at sea (the cure is to sit under a palm tree) you’ve never lived, or perhaps better to say felt more like dying? Nevertheless ship life went on, with Blues and Royals being called on regularly for fatigues as newcomers to the intricacies of RN and RM life. Constant chipping and repainting went on below decks by workers called “Night Hawks” and intense inspections of the ship for dust and dirt by the Captain and Commander continued. The sinks in the “heads” seemed to be for washing sailor’s “smalls” 24/7. Showers were limited to a two minute burst of water on, soap, water off as it appeared there was

There were some strange rituals; the dumping of rubbish at sea was precluded by the tannoy order from the Officer of the Watch ordering “Gash (rubbish) may now be ditched (dumped) off the port side” (depending on wind direction). Paying compliments to other RN ships at sea was again given by tannoy order from the Officer of the Watch directing “D’yer hear there, attention on the upper decks HMS Pinafore, starboard side, salute”. On 15th May, while Lt Coreth, the senior of the two subalterns, was among the commanders receiving orders for the landings from Brigadier Julian Thompson, the Royal Marine commanding 3 Commando Brigade, news came of the sinking of the Argentine warship Belgrano. Strangely to us Army types the sailors aboard Fearless did not take the sinking with as much enthusiasm as we did; a demonstration that those regularly at sea have a certain empathy with their enemy. On 20th May Fearless entered the Exclusion Zone, 3 Troop were to land at San Carlos, 4 Troop at Port San Carlos. Fearless, approaching from the north-east, dropped anchor at 0400 hours on 21st May. 3 Troop, pre-loaded in their landing craft, slipped towards land and accompanied by naval gunfire, landed 200 metres from the shore. 4 Troop made it, unopposed, just west of Port San Carlos. The remainder of some of our exploits during the land campaign have been documented in other articles. The Argentines’ surrendered on 14th June 1982, 3 Troop enjoyed the discos and bars of Stanley and 4 Troop lived against a hedge for the following week near Fitzroy before both troops met up again in Stanley prior to loading back on to Fearless. On re-boarding the ship on 25th June, the former view taken by both RN and RM of The Blues and Royals had changed significantly (due to our capabilities on land) and we were immediately greeted warmly to savour the delights of “Action Messing” again. The return sea journey was fairly uneventful other than a “Country Fair” held on the flight deck. Stalls were set up selling everything from used paperbacks, cakes and throwing wet sponges at the more popular at individuals. The ship’s Captain in full country attire (tweeds,

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plus fours and deer stalker) was accompanied by “his lady” during his tour of the events. I should point out that the “Captain’s Lady” was selected from a member of the ship’s all male crew following a beauty contest. With storage aboard so tight I have always wondered where sailors keep their collections of women’s clothes - all perfectly natural in RN traditions and in the best possible taste, apparently.

Some of those who participated in Op CORPORATE 30 years on at the Blues and Royals Association Dinner 2012

CVR(T)s disembarking from landing craft at Portsmouth 14th July 1982

The arrival in Portsmouth on 14th July was tremendous, ships, boats and all manner of craft escorted Fearless into the harbour. We lined the side of the ship

with our RN and RM colleagues and it was with a great sense of pride that we received the cheering and congratulations from our families and countrymen.

Terence Cuneo CVO OBE and “Outrage” 30 Years Ago - 20 July 1982

Reprinted from The Cuneo Society Journal Summer 2012 by kind permission of Chris Wheeler

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n 20 July 1982 Terence Cuneo heard the news that there had been two bomb explosions in London, one in Hyde Park and the other in Regent’s Park, with many fatalities. The first of these explosions had involved The Blues and Royals, part of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, which had been blasted by a nail bomb hidden in a blue Austin car, detonated as they rode past. In this blast three soldiers had been killed (one more died three days later from his injuries), other soldiers and members of the public had been injured, and seven horses had been so severely maimed they had to be shot. Two hours later there was a second explosion. This involved the band of The Royal Green Jackets who were playing music from Oliver! to a crowd of 120, when a bomb planted under the bandstand detonated, killing or wounding all of them.

Aftermath in South Carriage Drive

It is well known that Terry was very supportive of the Army Benevolent Fund, had over the years been heavily

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involved in so many aspects of the armed services, had painted hundreds of military masterpieces, and was well endeared by all levels of the services. Among these was Brigadier Gerald Landy at the Army Benevolent Fund. After a few days deliberating how he could help, Terry phoned Gerald to see if he could visit the barracks, see the wounded horses and see if he could find a suitable subject for a painting that could be used to raise funds for the families who had suffered. Approval was given and Memorial to the murdered soldiers he went to Knightsbridge “my pocket full of pencils Terry said of the occasion “It was hard and a sketch-book on the car seat beto hold back the tears”. side me”. He then learned more about one horse, Sefton, which had sustained Terry was determined to do something, some 40 wounds including six five inch and so made a preliminary sketch of nails in his head, and because of his digSefton in his box. Back in his studio he nity in the suffering had become the fostarted on a canvas but felt it did not cal point of the media of all the suffering have enough life to it. Sefton was too caused by this tragedy. This was borne lonely, it needed human contact. He out by the huge pin board covered with made arrangements with the Colonel to “get well” cards from all over the counhave Sefton brought out of his box, and try. Terry went into the loose box and returned to find Sefton outside standing looked at Sefton with all his wounds, in the sunshine with his farrier, Troopincluding the open gash where a shirt, er Hayes, holding him by his halter. now removed, had been stuffed into Terry realised that the farrier, wearing his neck to stem the flow of blood from his apron and the concerned look on his jugular vein, and the hole where a his face made the perfect composition. nail had pinned his bridle into his neck.


Terry Cuneo’s sketch of Sefton

Within a month the work was finished. He called it “Outrage”. On 28 September this evocative painting was auctioned by Lord Oaksey in the presence of Princess Anne and Terence Cuneo, at the State Apartments of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea, and was eventually sold for £12,000 to Mr Clifford Steed, topped up by a generous donation of £500 by the philanthropist Raphael Djanogly. The original sketch had been framed and was presented to Princess Anne at the start of the auction. Sefton, who had made a remarkable recovery, returned that day from Melton Mowbray where he had been recuperating, to appear in front of the State Apartments in the keeping of his also recovering Trooper Pedersen, to be met by Her Royal Highness (and fed a carrot or two!). Terry says of the moment when he too saw Sefton again “As the horse

Terry Cuneo’s painting of Sefton with farrier

came down the ramp on to the lawn in front of the Hospital, I found myself gaping! Was this lively, prancing twoyear-old the horse I had painted such a short time ago? I could not believe it.” Sefton made a remarkable recovery, surviving another ten years, two of them back in service. A Sefton Pendant was subsequently produced to mark Sefton’s recovery and “as a symbol of good over evil.” For more information, please refer to: “The Military Paintings of Terence Cuneo” by Brigadier Gerald Landy “Sefton: the Horse for Any Year” by Jeremy Greenwood www.horseshowcentral.com./flex/ sefton_battle_of_a_war_horse/269/1 http://householdcavalry.info/ mounted.html

A Sefton Pendant

Affiliated Cadet Forces

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Middlesex & North West London Army Cadet Force

en young Army Cadets from 216 Tottenham Detachment (The Blues and Royals) provided a welcome and immaculate Guard of Honour at the City of London’s Mansion House on Thursday 24th May. The occasion was the annual dinner of the Worshipful Company of Loriners held in one of London’s splendid historic buildings. As part of its charitable and outreach work The Worshipful Company of Loriners and Master Loriner Nick Fraser have long supported the Tottenham cadets. Invited guests chatted to the teenage cadets on parade before the dinner, many renewing acquaintances from other events like the Lord Mayors Show, which the cadets supported. For more information contact: Capt. Michael Nolan, Public Relations Officer 07813 363076.

Cadets with Under Warden (left) and Master Loriner Nick Fraser (right)

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Douay Martyrs School, Kensington and Tottenham Army Cadets at Annual Camp in Wales

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rmy Cadets from 198 Douay Martyrs School ACF (The Life Guards) 236 Kensington ACF (The Life Guards) and 216 Tottenham ACF (The Blues and Royals) were among nearly five hundred cadets and a hundred adult volunteer leaders from all over North and West London who have just returned from a challenging two weeks at their annual Training Camp at the Brecon Beacons in Wales. Clay Target shooting, Kayaking, Obstacle courses, high ropes

training, paintball and first aid training are just a few of the varied activities for the cadets over the two weeks of camp.

those successful cadets to instruct others. She is pictured receiving the SCIC award from Colonel Mark Hodson.

During the two-week camp Cadet Lance Corporal of Horse Lauren Kellman, who has been a cadet for four years 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

Cdt LCoH Kellman receiving her certificate from Col Hodson

Cadets on a variety of activities

Eagles Veterans RUFC Annual Report by WO2 JA Evans RHG/D

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he members of the Eagles club once again gathered in the fair city of Leeds for our now annual weekend of Rugby and socialising. A few members gathered early on the Friday morning for a round of golf. Again, as in previous years, Mark Dyche took all the honours, with Adrian Philips a close second. On Saturday morning we paraded outside the Hotel in Leeds city centre to board our transport supplied by Neal Gaskell for the short journey to Yarnbury Rugby Club in Horsfirth, on the outskirts of Leeds. Yarnbury, a club with close links to the military once again were our hosts for a Veterans Rugby tournament. Owing to retirements and injury we were struggling to field a full side which had not happened for a few years. However the Yarnbury 2nd team came to our rescue with a couple of young backs from their squad who were not due to play until later in the day in a league fixture. As

“Not nother scrum Referee”

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is the tradition of the club, if unable to play yourself then bring your sons and they play in your place, which was what Neil Smith did and his lads showed they were definitely chips of the old block. Our first game was against Yarnbury Vets and straight from the kick off we chased and hassled their defence, not letting them settle or get organised. Due to the pressure we were creating in around any loose ball and in managing to secure our own ball at the set piece, we finished the game with a narrow win which was a good result against a team who went on to win the competition. The young players in the backline cer-

tainly worked hard to cover in defence when the pack, who were shall we say made up of the slightly older and bolder players, struggled to cover the ground. We entered the second game against a Yorkshire All Stars XV full of confidence. With second rowers John Rutter and Dave Evans winning lots of line-out ball we were a touch unlucky to go a score down when we failed to clear our own line. We regrouped and went looking for a score, again our borrowed backs were causing problems for the All Stars defence and we managed to cross the line for a try. However, the kick was missed and we lost the game

The Eagles Veterans Rugby Club 2012


to a small margin of 7-5. The support from the pitch side was magnificent and we certainly needed it in the last game against our old foes Harrogate Rugby Club, as we lost the players from Yarnbury seconds to their league game, so took to the field with only 12 players. The Harrogate side made the extra manpower advantage pay and we soon found ourselves a few scores down. However, that only spurred the team on and we decided to start playing some

Ex players and management providing support from the touchline

champagne rugby and roared on by the non-playing Eagles members viewing from the touchline, fuelled by beer it has to be said, we took the game to the opposition and were rewarded with some great tries of our own. You could tell that the Harrogate side were not enjoying having a team with fewer players on the field, take the game to them and they increased their work rate and started playing safe possession Rugby. The game finished 26-14 to Harrogate veterans, and we left the park with our heads held high and quite rightly so. We adjourned to the Yarnbury Club house to enjoy a full ‘Third half’ and the Eagles showed even though we may not still have our prowess on the field of play, in the bar we are still top of our game led by the ever young Mark Dyche and “El President” John Kilvington. Well done to John Rutter for his “Man of Match Award” and to our “Rick Buckle Man of the Season” Dave Evans - that is right,

a Life Guard winning the Eagles Rugby Club award - and well deserved too, we hope he is not the last Life Guard to come and play for Club. Later we retreated to the Scarborough Arms our traditional watering hole in Leeds City Centre and were joined by many ex Regimental colleagues and members of the Yarnbury Rugby Club for a very enjoyable night remembering past glories as old soldiers and Rugby players do. During the August bank holiday the club gathered for our now traditional summer camp weekend at Mark and Liz Dyche’s house. We look forward to next year’s tournament at Yarnbury and hopefully getting a few more players onto the park, those yet to sample a Eagles weekend should either contact myself at the HQ Army Medical Directorate on 01276 412950 or contact club sectary Liz Dyche on 07870157361.

The Mickey Mouse Golf Tour 2012

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his year saw us return to Orlando, scene of our 2005 trip. Three of the current eight made that trip so a couple of the six courses chosen were familiar. We departed on 1st June – the beginning of the long weekend which celebrated the Diamond Jubilee. Needless to say this did cause some furore (or even fury) in a few of the households – particularly in Dorset. This year we welcomed Paul Lanahan on his first trip with us and he replaced Bjorn Dunkley who opted out for family reasons. The remainder were as in previous years (Paul Maxwell, Harry Ford, Peter Long, Russ Taylor, Dick Hennessy-Walsh, and the two from Manchester Gary Dunkley and our policeman Andy Consterdine). There was nearly a requirement for a late replacement when Russ Taylor decided to throw himself – face first – onto his patio causing severe damage to his arm, wrist and face in addition to re-arranging the paving stones. Anyhow, with six weeks off golf he managed to repair himself just in the nick of time. He now looks refreshingly different. The trip to the South Terminal, Gatwick in Paul Maxwell’s new car, fitted with aerodynamic roof rack, was not without concern as we all envisaged golf clubs being strewn along the M25/M23. Anyhow, with experienced loaders and lashers at hand all was well and Carol (Maxwell) dropped us off with everything in tact. The original flight times would have had us arriving a few hours before our

by Capt (Retd) R Hennessy-Walsh

Manchester lads but in the event, a severe delay of 3½ hours to our flight and a short delay to theirs meant that the waiting gap at Orlando was reduced – or so we thought. What the Northern numpties The first round on the first day and looking very fresh and happy! had not From L to R: Gary, Dick, Andy, Pete, Paul (Maxwell), realised Harry, Paul (Lanahan) and Russ (nor we in truth!) was that there is an A and B tershould not be subjected to such Sherpa minal at Orlando and their luggage had frolics. A 15 ½“ pizza kept us quiet for mysteriously moved to an identical para while, not least because we all burnt allel Car Hire location – but not the one the roof of our mouths. we sat at for a further 1½ hours looking for each other. Saturday morning (0300 hrs) we woke to the news that Hosni Mubarak had We arrived at the Hyatt Regency Orlanbeen sentenced to life imprisonment. do hungry, tired and emotional as usuGary and Dick went for their normal al. Anyhow a quick unpack and shop (but absurd) swim but it was outdoors around Publix soon brought Gary back and cold so we fell into the hot tub into life. Any strength he had managed stead. Walgreens followed for more to conserve over the previous 12 months shopping and a coffee – so much better however was very quickly evaporated than sleeping! when he had to park our van a route march from the hotel and carry most of By the time we got to the location of our room’s shopping on his very subour first course the temperature had instantial shoulders. His ‘roomy’ mancreased considerably and was well into aged to carry a few items but Gary acthe 90’s by the time we got underway. cepted that Dick’s frail and ageing body It was a local course ‘Grand Cypress

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New’ and is set in the midst of an open meadow. It is Jack Nicklaus’ tribute and homage to the famed Old Course at St. Andrews, Scotland. This Scottish links masterpiece is complete with double greens, stone bridges and walls, gorse mounds, burns and pot bunkers as deep as 12 feet - all in the spirit of the true Scottish original. Very little water comes into play on the New Course, but when it does it was challenging. Very few trees are located within the interior of the course, creating generous landing areas. However, an errant tee shot could find its way into one of our 150 pot bunkers. It was an interesting round for everyone with Paul (Max) and Andy sharing the spoils on 38 points each. Andy won on count back and successfully passed his daily challenge. Four of us went out again in the afternoon around the same course with the heat even more intense. Not surprisingly nobody improved on their morning score! The evening saw us re-visit a restaurant (Logan’s) which we had been to in 2005. It’s unusual in that the floor is covered in monkey nut shells and everyone is encouraged to join in. Harry did not need a second invitation and promptly threw a whole container of nuts at Andy - but forgot to shell them beforehand. War declared! Day 2 saw us playing at Champions Gate. We were advised by the starter to stay away from water on some of the holes. We did what we were told. Lovely birds all around the course which was something we enjoyed all week. The International Course brings a unique "down under" style of coastal links from Greg Norman’s homeland to Orlando. The links style course is designed around scenic natural wetlands, and features long carries, deep pot bunkers, tall grass-topped dunes, and large undulating greens. The National Course (which some had played before) is a completely different experience, and is designed in the "Florida golf resort" style. The lush course weaves its way through the naturally rolling central Florida plains, and features mature Pine, Oak, and Cypress groves, spring fed lakes, bunker protected fairways and greens, and small, challenging putting surfaces. In the morning we played International (won by Paul (Max)) and in the afternoon we had a fun competition. Another very hot and humid day. The evening saw us visit Olive Garden just outside Orlando (the inner city ones being completely crammed). Nice meal – tired and slept well. Monday saw us playing at Orange County National on the Crooked Cat

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course. This was a lovely course and some had played its partner - Panther’s Lake - in 2005. The courses were definitely improving (and getting more difficult) each day. This was won by Harry Paul Lanahan, Russ Taylor and Harry Ford on the 18th Green today who of the beautiful Bay Hill Course therefore retained his MidWeek Trophy from 2011. In the Clublocation to play the Magnolia Course – house afterwards we celebrated Paul’s or so we thought. Having arrived we (Lanahan) birthday and all had contribwere advised that the greens on that uted to a small gift for him. As night folcourse had been dressed the day before lows day the ‘Mall’ seekers took off for and might be a bit sandy. No matter we a small four hour session of shopping. thought and off we went down the first Fortunately there are lots of nice coffee hole and on arrival at the green found and ice cream parlours around! that there was more sand on them than on the beach so we drove back to the In the evening Gary very courageously Pro shop, passing our second confused put up some bunting in the room algroup, and asked to be slotted onto the most decapitating himself on the fan in other Disney course – the Palm. They the execution of getting involved in the were very accommodating and within Jubilee celebrations. Champagne was 30 minutes we had re-started the Wriserved for a few invited guests before gley Challenge on what were the fastgoing out for a meal at Outback’s – an est greens of the week by a long way. annual feasting event. Today we saw quite a few crocodiles so kept well away from water hazards Shingle Creek was our venue for the folof which there were many. Just as the lowing day and we got into full Jubilee first group were finishing the heavens celebratory mode by putting bunting all opened again and although they were over our golf buggies much to the desaved, the second group were comlight of our American hosts. This was pletely drenched. Strangely, in such without doubt the best course so far a magnificent location, there was no this week. On the 18th hole the most Clubhouse and we therefore retreated almighty storm arrived and we just to Hooters for the post golf lunch and managed to finish before the course was drinks. closed because of lightning. In the evening Bjorn Dunkley - who had just arrived for a family holiday - joined us at the Japanese Kobe restaurant for a few drinks before returning to his family. Sadly the Japanese chef sounded exactly the same as the Chef in Scottsdale the year before but was not so proficient. The screeching laughter as he threw butter in the air (“butterfly”!!) and trying to catch vegetables in his hat whilst eggs span out of control on the cooking surface was a step too far and we will not be going again!

At Shingle Creek in front of our suitably adorned buggies

Four of us went to Longhorns that evening via Gary’s timeshare location and we all want one! The other four ate at the very expensive restaurant in the hotel entertained (they said) by some interesting waiters. Wednesday saw us move to the Disney

One of the holes on the truly beautiful Disney ‘Palm’ Course


The following morning we had to change accommodation in order that we could play Bay Hill - where Arnold Palmer holds his annual PGA tournament. Before leaving the Hyatt there was the most enormous downpour (getting very bored with the rain by this time) and nobody thought it possible that we might play. However, by the time we were ready to tee off all was well and we set off on what was a fabulous round of golf on a truly beautiful course. Not for the first time in the week we were subjected to Alfred Hitchcock’s bird show trauma. These cheeky birds were particularly partial to crisps (of any flavour), chocolate in general and

Kit Kats especially. What they were less partial to was a rotating 4 iron travelling through the air at speed launched by a series of very disgruntled crisp and chocolate lovers. Pleased to say that no animals were hurt in the making of this ‘round’. Paul (Max) won with a very good 38 points – a truly remarkable feat off his handicap. Four of us dined at the very impressive Bay Hill Clubhouse that evening and Gary and a couple of the others dined with Bjorn’s family.

totally focussed golfer for the week and rightly took first place. Dick was second and Andy third. LG won the Wrigley Challenge, Dick and Paul Max the last day Pairs and the Johnny Wilson Pairs was won by Gary and Paul Max. Friday morning we all relaxed in the beautiful Spa or spent loads of money in the Pro Shop. There was great history around the location with fantastic photographs and memorabilia relating to Arnold. There followed an uneventful flight home to our adoring families.

So that was it in golf terms; Paul Maxwell stands out as a very impressive and

Wrigley Challenge (Winners Dick and Russ on the inside)

The Non Wrigley Challenge (Winners Andy and Paul Lanahan on the inside)

EXERCISE IRON HORSE 2012 HCR Motorcycle Club Tour to Croatia

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by Mr Chris Elliott (late RHG/D)

his year’s tour left a little later than usual (late September), with Ken Robertson and Stu Gibbons (both late RHG/D) riding to Dover to meet up with Chris Elliott and Adrian ‘Gunner’ Mardon (also both late RHG/D). The ride was through a heavy rainstorm which wasn’t a good start, but due to the way the weather had been over the whole summer it was no surprise. Once we boarded the ferry we met up with Jeff and Kath our American friends wanting to see as much of Europe as possible. We left the ferry in Calais with the hope of covering 250 miles towards southern Belgium, but after an hour’s riding we decided to exit the motorway, which was a little early as it turned out, and as such ruined our chances of making our planned campsite for the night. It was about this time that Gunner Mardon dropped his bike at a set of traffic lights and Chris Elliott did the same trying to move over to help him – things could only get better! Which in the event they

Chris Elliott, Jeff Hays and Ken Robertson in the Alps

did; on arriving at the alternative campsite just outside the Belgian town of Rochefort just in time to erect tents and get changed before last light, we discovered that we were close to the town centre

which had enough bars and restaurants to keep us all happy. A good first night was had by all. Our ‘Aim’ on the second day was to

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Gunner Mardon just can’t stop waiting on people

head south east towards the Alps and avoid the rain clouds. All but Gunner decided to put on waterproofs. As soon as we got on the Autobahn the heavens opened up and we decided to ride until we needed to fill up, to be honest this was just as well as there didn’t seem to be a service station for about 80 miles. When we did finally come across one, we pulled in and filled up only to find out we had lost Gunner. We stayed put for about an hour waiting for him whilst attempting to call him. Stu Gibbons eventually managed to speak to him, and found out that he had pulled off the Autobahn to put his waterproofs on after riding for an hour in the rain until his riding boots filled with water. He had found a petrol station and had filled up, had a fag (not at the same time) and rode on passing the service station where we were waiting. The age old adage of a plan never surviving first contact with the weather rang true. We pulled out of the station heading towards Konstanz. After six miles on the road with Ken Robertson leading and Chris Elliott second in line a decision needed to be made at a busy intersection with trucks throwing up a lot of spray: left or right? …. Ken Robertson went right … Chris Elliott left … with the rest

going right; things don’t get any easier once you’ve left the army! By the time we got to the campsite at Allensbach on Lake Konstanz, all riders had got there using alternative routes; Gunner arrived three hours after everyone else, and was freezing due to putting his waterproofs on after he was drenched to the skin. We slept in Hiker lodges and ate our first Bratwurst of the tour. We decided the next day (a Friday) to cross the Alps and make as much progress towards Croatia as possible, blue skies made for a great start to the day. We rode along the southern coast of Lake Konstanz for about 40 minutes before crossing into Switzerland where Gunner Mardon headed to the bank for cash (100 Swiss Francs) ... we crossed the border into Italy six miles further down the road!! All of us stayed in a nice hotel in Merano (Italy) except Gunner who was living the dream at the local campsite a few miles down the road, possibly because they took Swiss Francs.

Dolomites that afternoon, stopping at Passo Duran (1603ft) for a hot drink by a roaring fire. The weather had caught us with a vengeance that afternoon, slowing down our progress; low cloud cover and horizontal rain proved characterbuilding for all of us. Gunner hated every tight, wet turn up and down the mountains, but was learning fast - good going for a guy who passed his test only four months before we departed! Jeff and Kath Hays’ bike slid out from underneath them on a wet roundabout, Stu Gibbons and Ken Robertson sprang into action to direct traffic and get the bike back up, all were luckily fine and with only a few minutes delay we were back on the road. After riding in circles around Trieste with a little help from an iPhone (a step-up from Dave Coleman’s McDonald’s Road Map of Europe from previous tours), we found a hotel a few miles outside of Trieste whilst Gunner continued the search for a campsite for himself, presumably to rid himself of more Swiss Francs.

The following day, we entered the Alps where the roads were dry and the scenery stunning. Traveling through Austria, we stopped at St Christophe pass (1700ft) for lunch then riding into the

On the fifth day we were reunited in the hotel car park and rode a short distance through Italy before passing through Slovenia, and finally arriving in Croatia the target country for the ride. The

Taking a dip in the Adriatic after a long day’s ride - those breakers are dangerous!

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Chris Elliott and Stu Gibbons leading in Austria

Pit Stop view of the Croatian coast


coastal road was amazing. For a lunch stop, we found a small restaurant with great ocean views and an extremely friendly staff. The owner provided us with a nice glass of what appeared to be ‘Slivo’ for free to end our meal and then decided to send us each off with a bottle of water for the long, dry journey south. We stopped at a small seaside lodge, the Hotel Florida in Tribanji that the riders had passed on the previous year’s tour to Bosnia. Although the planned riding day was not yet done, the team decided to stop for the day in the early afternoon and enjoy some time in the ocean. Somehow, we all ended up in the water with bike helmets on – don’t ask; and for just 10€ each we had a bed for the night and a shower, which rounded off the day as one of the highlights of the trip. We awoke to a beautiful Dalmatian morning. The team headed off with Stuart Gibbons splitting off at the first fuel stop and heading to Dubrovnik while the rest of the ‘Wild Hogs’ headed north aiming for Slovenia for the night. We rode inland for a while, and then headed west for more twisty coastal road riding, arriving for the night in Idrija in Slovenia and shared a memorable pizza dinner. Meanwhile, Stuart Gibbons had visited Dubrovnik for a spot of lunch, when he decided, apparently on the spur of the moment, to ‘pop over’ to Romania for the Manchester United Game. Leaving Dubrovnik, he headed through Mostar and arrived just short of Sarajevo for the night. ‘On the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.’ There was, however, no rest for the main group of riders, who took an amazing ride through Slovenia including Triglav National Park before crossing into Italy, then Austria and then back into Italy again. It was here that some of the riders found some off-road action in the form of a closed road with mud, huge potholes and plenty of water running through a fantastic mountain pass. Those riders who were brave enough to attempt the challenge were rewarded at the bottom with a stunning vista of a turquoise lake that resulted in a mandatory photo stop! Gunner Mardon rode through similar scenery but kept to asphalt roads. All the riders (save the Red Devil Gibbons) arrived for the night just down the road from Chienes in Italy where they tried to no avail to catch the match with the hope of catching their fellow rider in the crowd. It turned out that Stu Gibbons had his own little adventure, that went a little like this: up at 0600, he started the next leg of his journey under sunny skies; faced a crazy ride through Bosnia, Hungary and into Romania;

whilst off-road riding in Hungary, where there were too many lorries and a severe lack of dual carriageways, he was attacked by a hoard of dogs and encountered sheet lightning; if this wasn’t enough he even managed to find time to make a pass through Maglaj in Bosnia; got caught for speeding at the Romanian border, and paid an on-the-spot fine of 315 Romanian schlotties (about £53); arrived in Cluj15 mins after kick off and had a taxi driver lead him to the stadium; when he got there he managed to get the assistance of a local policeman who made the stadium staff let him in for free. What an epic adventure – and the best bit of the day (for him at least) was that Manchester United won! The following day, the target for the main group was to stop by the famous King Ludwig’s Stu Gibbons taking the turns in his stride Castle known to the Wild Hogs as the ‘Chitideas and decided to take his time and ty-Chitty-Bang-Bang Castle’. Although wait for Stu Gibbons; he was really getGunner Mardon was still riding solo, by ting into this riding malarkey! He heada strange coincidence he was next seen ed to Detmold where he met up with a shooting a photograph of an amazing long lost friend whom he hadn’t seen for bridge right as the other Hogs rode past 24 years, whilst Stu Gibbons spent the him; it’s a big world, but we still manday and night in a mad dash towards aged to stay close. It has to be said that Ypres. Whilst the remainder were ferry Gunner Mardon’s riding and navigation bound back to the UK, home, the dry skills improved greatly over the week and warm beds, Messrs Mardon and and as a solo rider he managed to arrive Gibbons finally met up at Ypres (seemat the Castle well before the other riders. ingly a club tradition over the years) After a quick drive-by of the Castle, we where they too enjoyed a final night of then rode on to Buxheim in Germany the tour watching the Last Post followed where we stayed in a hotel by a lake by a nice dinner of mussels to finish off with Gunner Mardon once again campthe trip; amazingly, Gunner slept in a ing – was he really still trying to get rid real bed for a change and skipped the of his Swiss currency? Meanwhile, after camping. the long ride from Romania, Stuart Gibbons arrived at Tim and Anya Mardon’s As with many recent tours, the regular in Slovakia where he found outstanding element of the Regiment has been sorely Mardon hospitality with fine wine, a missed, mainly due to commitments and good meal and a big roaring fire … even the moving on of Maj Philipson-Stow though Tim and his wife were away in to ERE pastures. A new breed of regiPoland at the time! He then faced a 1000 mental biker is on the rise and we hope miles over the next two days to catch his that in the near future we can integrate scheduled ferry and a chance to meet up both serving and retired members of the the rest of the Hogs. Regiment into the club as was in years past, and embark on new adventures The rest of the group are feeling the pull across the continent of Europe. Anyone of home and ride 350 miles through coninterested in future tours should contact tinuous rain to reach Ypres, Belgium. either Messrs Kenny Robertson or Stu There they watched the Last Post at the Gibbons (through the Association if necMenin Gate before a last meal together essary) for further information. and a few celebratory drinks. Gunner Mardon on the other hand had other

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Household Cavalry Museum, Horse Guards

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t’s been a very disjointed year due to the enforced closure of the Museum for three months during the summer so that the Olympic Games Beach Volleyball Competition could be held on Horse Guards Parade. Entering into the spirit of the year’s major events we produced a display about members of the Household Cavalry, who had taken part in the Olympic Games since 1908 entitled ‘Household Cavalry Olympians’. Five Olympic medals and a good selection of Olympic artefacts including an oar and a torch were on display. We also supported the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee by featuring the 2nd Life Guard Captain ‘Ossie ‘ Ames, who as the tallest man in The British Army at 6’ 8 ¾” (2.051m), was especially selected by The Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII) to lead Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee procession in 1897. The Museum continues to make progress and, even though we were off the London tourism radar for three months, it looks likely that we shall achieve our overall financial goal for the year in spite of rather lack lustre in-bound tourism to the UK in the aftermath of the Games. However, after the very positive publicity for London and the United Kingdom generated by

The Museum Director, Martin Westwood with Hugh Robertson, Dominic Mahony, an RHG/D Tpr, and Lord Astor, present medals for the exhibition

a successful Olympic Games we (and the tourism industry in general) are looking forward to a bright 2013 and an even more successful year, having refurbished all our Audio visual systems, cleaned the metalwork, spread our pro-

motional wings, heightened our visibility on the London circuit and taken on new corporate event manager partners to drive the corporate hospitality aspect of our business, which has great potential as yet under realised.

The Household Cavalry Museum Archive

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by Mr J Lloyd Museum Assistant

he Household Cavalry Regimental Collection, as it is formally termed, is in the main, held at the Household Cavalry Museum Archive and Education facility at Combermere Barracks Windsor. John Lloyd ex LG WO1 has been the Museum Assistant, employed by the MoD to maintain the Collection and facility since the old Household Cavalry Museum was refurbished in 2009. Since the Archive and Education side of the Windsor Museum became active, we have worked towards achieving a standard that would enable past members of the Household Cavalry and interested parties to make enquires about serving soldiers from 1660 to the present day. A number of organised groups come to Combermere Barracks of all ages from Schools, Youth and family groups and clubs for those that have retired, to see and experience the unique history and activities of the Household Cavalry that exists not only in the museum but in the barracks itself. This also includes recruits as well as serving officers and soldiers. These visits have proven to

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be a success in promoting the regiment and the Army in general in accordance with goals directed by Heritage Branch of MOD. We receive a steady stream of

research requests to the Archive from genealogical researchers as well as those with a family connection to the Household Cavalry. The income from


the research queries and donations from organised civilian visits assists with funds that are being used to purchase equipment that will help conserve the collection as well as provide improvement to the research of queries raised by the general public. Without the Volunteers who give up their time to work at the Museum, what we do would be impossible. Most of our helpers are ex- members of the regiments of the Household Cavalry, but we also have a few that are civilians with conservation experience which greatly aids the preservation of the regiment’s history. They all do excellent and committed work and are pivotal to the running of the Museum Archive throughout the week. The Volunteer support group we have are: Mr Ted Land (LG) Mr David Bradley (RHG) Mr Geoffrey Knowles BEM (LG) Mr Harry Mitchell (LG) Mr Jim Lees (Royals) Miss Janine Lloyd Mr David Price Mr Sam Keyworth MBE (RHG) Mrs Monica O’Donogue Mrs Carol Hickman Mr Ray Dupre

Mr Sid Dodson (Model Maker Vehicles) (RHG) Mr Don Johnson (Model Soldiers) (LG) When we started in 2009 ago it was quite a daunting task, but it is now safe to say we meet with all the criteria required for our accreditation. The reserve collection is also a work in progress : numbering and cataloguing can be a very tedious, but is of course very necessary; sorting through the many items historic and newly acquired, donated or gifted to the Museum will eventually be achieved. Like many museums, improvement in all areas is greatly dependent upon funds. An aspiration to digitise all the documents in the archive will require both time and significant funds and much of the income will be derived from how attractive and interesting the general public perceive both the archive and research facility are made to. The museum has recently been bequeathed an original 1846 Life Guards helmet Albert pattern by the late Mr David John Jeffrey Rowe. Additionally, a copy of an 1897 Muster Roll from the 1st Royal Dragoons has been gifted by Mr Anthony Kennett.

We welcome anyone who wishes to volunteer to assist in the museum archive, to visit or with a research query to contact Mr John Lloyd at Tel: 01753 755112 or Email: Education@householdcavalry. co.uk or archive@householdcavalry. co.uk

Back Into Uniform – For Life! by Lieutenant Colonel Mick Harding RHG/D

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earing the end of my 32½ years of active service I started to ponder what I would do for the rest of my life. I had already secured a civil service job as SO1 G4 Logistics (more commonly known as Staff Quartermaster) for the Royal Armoured Corps but that wouldn’t see me through old age. I feared not having anything to make the brain tick over and something to get up for every morning. Thankfully an old colleague of mine contacted me and laid open a proposition which answered all my worries. So here I am in Windsor Castle, for a life-sentence, and back in uniform! Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining. I am now a Military Knight of Windsor (MKW for short). You should look it up on Google to see what they do but in a nutshell, MKW perform a traditional and ceremonial role as they represent the Knights of the Garter (the senior Order of Chivalry whose Companions are chosen by the Sovereign alone) in their own Chapel (St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle). They march in slow time into Chapel to take their places in their stalls, wearing uniforms designed by King William IV for officers “on the unattached list”. They parade some 54 times a year, on most Sundays, on Garter Day when

they lead the procession from the Castle into Chapel, on State Visits when held at Windsor, at funerals of members of the Royal Family at Windsor and of MKW themselves, at the ceremony to lay up banners of deceased Garter Knights, at four Obituary services when the Dean reads out the names of the many benefactors of the College of St George starting with Henry III in 1240 and on other unscheduled occasions. MKWs need a good reason to miss parade and for their commitment, which is until the end of their earthly life or until they are unable to carry out their duties, they live in houses built into the curtain wall of the Castle immediately opposite the Chapel. It is permitted for MKW to have part-time jobs but each one has duties within the community and some work for the College of St George. I was installed at the Evensong service on Sunday 6th May 2012 amidst much ceremony. I am the 653rd MKW and it was 664 years ago, back in 1348, that Edward III established the Most Honourable and Noble Order of the Garter and not long afterwards the MKW. The picture was taken at my Installation specifically including those Blues and Royals who are still serving the Crown in

various appointments: Lt Col Ray Giles, MKW; Lt Col (Retd) David O’Halloran, HQ LONDIST; Col Toby Browne, Crown Equerry; Lt Col Stuart Watts, MKW; Lt Col Mick Harding, MKW; Mr Terry Pendry, Queen’s Stud Groom; Lt Col Gordon ‘Fluffy’ Birdwood, Gentleman Usher. Actually they were not called Military Knights until the reign of William IV. Immediately after the Battle of Crecy many noblemen captured by the French had been obliged to forfeit all their land and belongings in order to regain their freedom, and were then so destitute that Edward III took 24 of these Poor or Alms Knights and undertook to house and feed them within Windsor Castle. In return they had to cover for the Garter Knights who could only get to Windsor infrequently and they had to pray daily for the Sovereign and the Garter Knights past and present in the Chapel in the Castle, much as the MKW do today. Now there are only 13 MKW (a Governor who retires at 75 and twelve) and attending Chapel while obligatory on Sundays, is optional on all other days of the week. The MKW is listed right at the front of the Army List in recognition that it is the oldest unit in the British

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Supporters with the newly installed Military Knight

Army and this allows us to retain our ranks without the ‘Retired’. There have been a number of other Household Cavalrymen through the ages:

• • •

214th MKW 1673 - 1680: Captain Robert Draper LG, who faithfully served Charles I and had a pretty colourful tenure. 236th MKW 1687 - 1706: Lieutenant Alexander James, who served in the Earl of Oxford’s regiment. 238th MKW 1689 - 1699: Dodmen Pope, who also served in the Earl of Oxford’s regiment. 270th 1716 - 1743: Cyrus Rivers, who served in 3rd Troop of Horse Guards commanded by Richard, 4th Earl Rivers. 396th 1811 - 1822: Ensign John McLean, who served for 68 years first in the 29th Regiment of Foot, for

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• •

many years in the Life Guards and lastly as an Ensign in the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Veterans! 421st MKW 1827 - 1850: Lieutenant Charles Hunt Lorimer, who served in the 1st (Royal) Dragoons and was present at the battle of Corunna. 426th MKW 1831 - 1840: Captain Charles Langford, who also served in the 1st (Royal) Dragoons. 428th MKW 1831 - 1841: QuarterMaster Thomas Varley, who served as QM in the Royal Horse Guards and was present at the battle of Waterloo (severely wounded). 434th MKW 1837 - 1837: Lieutenant Thomas Emans who served in the 1st Regiment of Life Guards. 436th MKW 1837 - 1861: Lieutenant Andrew Heartley, who served in the Royal Horse Guards and served in the Peninsular War and at the battle of Waterloo. 625th MKW 1978 - 2003: Major

Walter Louvain Thompson MVO, MBE, DCM, who served in The Life Guards from 1933 and commissioned Riding Master 1952. After retiring he was called to Windsor to instruct HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, in coach driving and to oversee the schooling of the carriage horses. 638th MKW 1996 - : Lieutenant Colonel Raymond Roland Giles, Late Entry Office who served in the Royal Horse Guards and the Blues and Royals. 647th MKW 2005 - : Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Alastair Watts OBE, Late Entry Officer who served in the Royal Horse Guards and then Blues and Royals Band between 1963 and 1971. 653rd MKW 2012 - : Lieutenant Colonel Michael Alfred Harding, Late Entry Officer served in the Blues and Royals between 1973 and 2005.

Finally retiring from full time work at the end of June 2013, by the time this article appears in the 2013 Journal Annie and I would have moved into our refurbished accommodation and finally have joined this close knit community. I will be taking over the Quartermaster role for the MKW from fellow Blue and Royal Ray Giles, who as an octogenarian is allowed to hand over jobs other than attending Chapel. Included within this role is the upkeep of a threebed self-contained guest flat. Another task I hope to take up in due course is to conduct tours of the Chapel at night for some of those who attend residential courses in St George’s House, the purpose of which is to “Nurture Wisdom”. With ten Sovereigns buried in the Chapel, along with the remains of military figures, Deans and Canons (not to mention MKW whose ashes are also interred here) there is no shortage of subject matter. In November 2012 I took part in the State Visit for the Amir of Kuwait. Together with three other MKW and the Governor we stood at the bottom of the stairway in the Sovereign’s Entrance to salute Her Majesty and Her guests as they ascended the stairs. It is most certainly a privilege to be here. The prerequisites in order to apply are that you should be married accompanied, have been a commissioned officer (LE or Direct Entry), to have had a long and distinguished service, and you need to have been installed before the age of 67. I applied to go on the waiting list when I was 55 years old. There is a screening interview with the Governor of the MKW (GMKW), the MOD Military Secretary Representative and either a Colonel or Brigadier from the Army Personnel Centre. This will be followed


by a further interview for you and your wife if and when a vacancy is likely. This interview is with the GMKW, The Dean and the Constable and Governor of Windsor Castle. It is of course quite literally a case of Dead Man’s shoes – no vacancy unless a MKW dies or has to leave through ill-health. We seek to have a balance of Corps and Teeth Arms represented here with a sensible

balance of LE and Direct Entry officers. Although our seniority is determined by the date of our installation, the retired ranks of the present MKW range from Brigadier to Major. The present Governor is retired Lieutenant General Peter Pearson. Knowledge of the MKW tends to be spread by word of mouth and so perhaps

this article may spark interest amongst others who might wonder whether this lifestyle could suit them. So, if there any Household Cavalry officers, serving or retired, who would like to know more then please feel free to contact me or the MKW Staff Officer, Lt Col Jolyon Willans at 9 Lower Ward, Windsor Castle, SL4 1NJ, or phone 01753 858142.

A Climb For the Cause Mount Kilimanjaro - 15-24 June 2012 by Rupert Fryer

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ltitude sickness is caused by acute exposure to low partial pressure of oxygen at high altitude. People have different susceptibilities to altitude sickness and the most common symptoms are headaches, fatigue, dizziness, sleep disturbance, and stomach illness. Well, we experienced it all in various measures and some more than others. Mount Kilimanjaro stands at slightly below 20,000 feet at the Uhuru peak, and is the highest mountain in Africa. A team of six plus an entourage of local guides and porters departed on the 15th June to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. The team consisted of some slightly older and mainly grey haired members with a splattering of youth in the form

of Rupert Fryer, aged 52, Team leader and ex RHG/D Tp Ldr 1981-1985 ,WO1 (RCM) Mick Flynn aged 52, LCoH Paul Jones aged 25, Daniel Fryer aged 19 (son of Rupert), Jeremy Bevan aged 52 (friend and supporter of the cause) and Yannick Flugi aged 35 ( Trusted Swiss mountain guide). I had assembled this group to raise funds for the HCOCF. Mick was a key ingredient as he was the “star” factor and able to raise awareness of our expedition and fund raising. Paul was the actual “casualty”! I wanted to take along a soldier wounded in Afghanistan, and Paul signed up. My son was in his gap year and eager for adventure. Jeremy, not currently overburdened with work,

heard about the trip and assured me he could add significantly to the party. Yannick was vital, being Swiss, efficient and would keep us all out of trouble. He has scaled most mountains on this earth. There are six main routes up Mount Kilimanjaro. We chose to proceed up the Rongai Route to the top and then descend down the Marangu Route (the Coca Cola Route) to the bottom. The Rongai is the least frequented route and in many respects the most interesting. On arrival in Tanzania (full of Yellow Fever and Hepatitis A vaccine, and also a good dose of Malaria tablets), we spent the first day at the Arusha Coffee Lodge, about one hour from Kilimanjaro airport. This was a day of prepa-

Day Two and Kilimanjaro two days away in the background L-R: R Fryer, J Bevan, P Jones, M Flynn and D Fryer

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ration prior to the climb and Yannick had the Admin nightmare of trying to locate a missing bag which never made the flight from Amsterdam, which contained vital pieces of personnel equipment sleeping bag, walking boots, wine and Swiss sausages. In the afternoon we did have time for a brief safari around the local reserve. On the second day, we drove four hours to the start of the climb, at the Rongai gate. This journey was undertaken in a minibus that seemed to have considerably more seats than the 6 needed for our team. All was made abundantly clear as we stopped regularly on route to pick up our porters and guides. After three hours on the road, we had at least 20 people and at least 6 tons of equipment strapped mainly to the top of the vehicle with three dozen eggs sat precariously on the front dash of the 14 seater mini bus. At this point I need to say a few words about the wonderful local guides. We never really mastered their names and hence Mick decided to call them number 1, 2 , 3… etc. Our main guide, all four foot of him, had a name that sounded like “Hobbit”, and hence that is what he was called for the duration. The worst job undoubtedly went to “Rocky” who had to carry up the portable toilet! The man deserves a medal and my son gave him his Nike running shoes at the end. This may sound like a trivial gesture, but bear in mind Rocky made it to the top, with the thunderbox, in flip-flops! Number 1 was actually called “Eggs Out”; a man who scales this mountain on a weekly basis. Number 2 was a muscle bound local called “Neander” who had the most infectious laugh and kept us entertained throughout. The first day of hiking took us though jungle and then out into a typical savanna of tall grass. Kilimanjaro was in the distance and after four hours we arrived at the Moshi-Rongai cave camp, situated at 2900 metres. We still had plenty of fresh water at this stage and I even managed to find a stream for a thorough wash. The military element managed to wash and shave each morning in a mess tin of water. For those of us who left the Army over thirty years ago, this was never going to happen; Jeremy opted for a battery razor shave and Daniel decided to grow a 70’s tache which to this day is work in progress. Day two had us hiking further to 3450 metres. The landscape remained mainly grassy and rocky. The temperature was between 30˚C and 35˚C and our pace was consistently slow, with our local guides reminding us to move “Pula Pula”…slowly slowly! We passed caves and evidence of buffalo although we

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never actually saw any big game on the climb. One alarming element was that we appeared to be veering well to the left and leaving Kilimanjaro further behind. We ended up camping at the base of another steep and jagged mountain called Mawenzi. However, we were definitely getting higher. On the third day, although only walking for four hours, we had reached a height of 4330 metres. It was now beginning to get harder, more difficult to get enough air in the lungs and the headaches were starting. There was an inviting pond at the camp, but we were not permitted to jump in it. This was the water supply for everyone and once boiled was indeed drinkable; however the colour was distinctly brown. We had nearly run out of bottles of fresh water. I took the blame for this and nearly a smack over the ear from Mick. I had suggested to the guides and Yannick at the start that it might be a good idea to bring up some wine and also some cans of beer. Little did I know that the guides replaced half the water supply with Pinot Noir and Kilimanjaro lager! Mick and Paul found some time to sunbathe, using small umbrellas we were given as shade against their pale English complexions. Anyway, Yannick decided to ban all alcohol for the rest of the climb as he felt it might interfere with our performance. I decided not to argue with him. Day four was the steady trail to the base of the mountain, the Kibo hut at 4700 metres. We passed a light aircraft that had got caught in the clouds and hit the ground. We were at this stage, well above the clouds that had formed a blanket at 3000 metres and remained there all day. The terrain was like a desert and equally hot. Those of us still in shorts and T shirts got burnt. We arrived at the camp in the afternoon and had a few hours to rest before preparing for the final ascent. The plan was to have a brief breakfast at midnight and then push on up. We were to allow seven to eight hours to reach the summit. The Rongai route offers the most difficult and steepest ascent to the rim of the crater. Kilimanjaro is actually a dormant volcano. After six hours we reached Gilman’s point at 5685 metres. In itself, this is a great achievement after a laborious climb, but there was still a further one and a half hours of hiking through the snow and over a glacier and past Stella point to the actual peak of Mount Kilimanjaro, Uhuru peak at 5895 metres or 19,341 feet. There followed the ritual photographs at the iconic signpost proving one had achieved one’s aim. We had brought a

bottle of Swiss champagne to celebrate which promptly exploded on opening, leaving a few sips of amber nectar for the team. The temperature was around minus 15˚C at this stage and our water bottles had frozen. It is difficult to describe the mixture of dizziness, extreme headache and elation at this point. We spent about 20 minutes at the top and then started the long descent down the Marangu Route (Coca Cola) to the Horombo Hut where we would spend the night. Overall, we had walked for 15 hours over this fifth day! The Marangu route is the most popular, least interesting, but the most effective to reach the bottom as fast as possible. The final day of the climb, or in fact now the descent, was an uncomfortable rocky path for 18 kilometres back to the Marangu gate and the long awaited bus to take us back to the lodge. Certificates were issued to prove we actually did reach the summit, and then I was finally allowed one of my precious beers! We had a good day of R and R prior to boarding Holland’s finest KLM flight back to London via Amsterdam. The team had consisted of such a variety of characters, but it worked superbly and I have rarely spent such a fun week with such quality individuals. Three of us were over 50 years old - myself, Mick and Jeremy. Jeremy had an extraordinary ability to consume virtually no air at all, and hence looked the freshest throughout, although he did complain a lot about the quality of his mattress. Mick was going to achieve the aim whatever, despite feeling particularly ill at the top. His stories of adventure and derring-do were wonderful and as none of us (except for Paul) knew if they were true, he had a willing and awe-struck audience. As team leader, I had to just grin and bear it although I had severe headaches. As for the youngsters, my son Daniel was a marvel although I am sure he wished he had had a haircut prior to the start. Paul was an inspiration to all. His foot and ankle, not improved by a landmine in Afghanistan, were a constant source of pain, but he just dealt with it through a combination of grit and bad jokes. My friend Yannick, the Swiss guide, organized the whole event with the proverbial Swiss ruthless efficiency. He is also a top class photographer, and has produced amazing pictures, some included in this report. He reminded me of a cross between a mountain goat and a grasshopper! He hopped about the rocks throughout the climb looking for vantage points to take photos. As he spends most of the year in the Alps, I don’t think he was affected at all by the altitude.


I congratulate everyone for succeeding in climbing Mount Kilimanjaro and for assisting in the task of raising funds for the HCOCF. This finally amounted to

£54,000. I thank everyone for their generous support and it was a pleasure to have climbed with such a fun team.

One thing is for sure, I will never do it again!

The team at the top at 5895 metres on Day Five

60 Years On

2

013 will mark 60 years on from the Coronation. Also that year was the first time The Queen presented new

Standards to the Household Cavalry. The newspaper clipping below shows The Queen happily talking to the two Gold Sticks as she leaves Home Park in April. A young Cpl Ray Giles is the lance guard marker. The other shows the members of the WOs’ and NCOs’ Mess of the Mounted

Squadrons with in the centre the Regimental Adjutant Capt Doxford, Silver Stick Col JS Ward, RCM Maxted, and Lt Col Sir Rupert Hardy Bt, who had been brought out of retirement to command the Squadrons when Jackie Ward moved his office and staff from the Barracks to Horse Guards. Cpl Giles is fifth from the right in the fourth row.

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A 1983 Exchange Trip From Detmold

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he photographs below, from former LG NCO Rob Scales who served with the Regiment from around 1965 to 1972 before transferring to the RAF where he carved out a career with their Police Dog unit, recall an excursion from Detmold. Following a visit to Detmold by members of the RAF Police Squadron from RAF Laarbruch there was a return 2 day trip to the air station in October 1983. The Chieftain trained soldiers from C Squadron visited the flying squadrons, II Squadron with their photo recce Jaguars, XV Squadron with their, then new, GR 1 Tornadoes (in picture), the RAF Fire section, control tower, and RAF Police Dog section. The visit was hosted by Cpl Scales who accompanied them during the days activities, and enjoyed meeting up again with Harry Marshall etc. The photograph in front of the GR1 incudes CoH Harry Marshall (sadly now deceased), SCM Derek Willis (the older of the many Willis'). Answers on a post card with a full cast list. Perhaps present are Messrs Tinsley, Margan, Jones, Barry, George among others ?

From the 1983 yearbook - a delegation to the RAF led by WO2 Willis

Two of the guys ‘volunteered’ to get in the ‘dog-suits’ and become intruders/ criminals. Mind you, looking at the arresting photograph, Rover looks more in danger from the RAF Police than LG from the dog. Perhaps the dog had heard of the treatment dished out to aggressive dogs by NCOs in A Squadron. II Squadron RAF also flew a couple of training sorties up to Detmold and photographed the Regiment's Chieftains "cammed" up on Stapel, the local training area. The results were then shown to them in the Recce Interpretation Centre, to prove/disprove the effectiveness of the Regiment's camouflage skills! No evidence remains.

‘Get him off me, Corporal’. Tprs Kielty and Cobb seem to have survived

The Respect of Friends

by Ian Swain, formerly 22763738 The Life Guards

I

first met Brian Stead, a Life Guard PTI, when we were a couple of Lancashire Lads doing our National Service in The Life Guards at Balaklava Camp in the Suez Canal Zone in 1954. A strong Lancashire accent came across in the NAAFI, and I went across to ask him which part of Preston he came from; “Pear Tree” was his answer. I was released from Combermere in February 1955, and returned home to Fleetwood and to my old job in the laboratory of the nearby ICI complex. Brian was released a few months later and went

straight from Windsor to Aldershot where he joined the APTC, serving for 22 years and leaving as WO1. It was over 40 years until we met again, the issue of the long overdue GSM for service in The Canal Zone during the 1951-1954 Active Service Order brought a phone call from Brian now based in Bamber Bridge a couple of miles from his old home in the Pear Tree area of Preston. We are both members of The Life Guards Association but Brian is also an active member of the RAPTC

Association. He is also a member of its Executive Committee and the Secretary of its NW area, where he organises an excellent reunion weekend for his association members every January at a Blackpool Hotel. Fleetwood and Bamber Bridge are only about 30 miles apart and have an excellent motorway connection so regular personal contact is easily maintained. A phone call from Brian in early March told me that Joe Graham, an RAPTC Assn member, and former WO, living

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in China, was coming back with his wife, to a relatives home in Cleveleys to convalesce after a serious illness. The RAPTC Assn was helping with his travel after arrival in the UK, and as his final destination was only a couple of miles from my home – and would I help? Maj Peter Leigh, the RAPTC equivalent of LG Assn’s Dick Hennessy-Walsh, was spending the night in the officers quarters of the RAPTC in Aldershot and the CO’s car and driver were collecting him at 5am to drive to Heathrow where Joe Graham was arriving with his Chinese wife on a flight from Hong Kong, travelling as a wheelchair passenger. They were then taking them to Euston Station and helping them on a train to Preston. He would then ring Brian with details of the train arrival, Brian would then help him to another platform for the Blackpool train and accompany him to Blackpool.

the curtains closed at the committal, the Last Post was played by a recording played by a Life Guard trumpeter. At the wake, at Fleetwoods Victorian Mount Hotel, Brian gave Joe’s wife the

CD he made and was used at the committal. The label having the RAPTC badge and saying that the last post was played by a Life Guard trumpeter, Joe’s name and the date.

This where the LG Assn took over. I collected Brian, Joe and his wife from Blackpool station and delivered them to his relatives’ home. He told me that he didn’t expect to receive a Life Guard escort. I apologised for it not being a mounted escort, but it was all arranged at short notice. Brian and I then went to a local pub for a late pub lunch: the Special, half a chicken and chips, a pint of beer/glass of wine all for a fiver. Sadly Joe died a few weeks later and Brian and I attended the funeral. As

Colonels of The Life Guards holding Field Marshal rank

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by Captain (Retd) R Hennessy-Walsh, The Life Guards

eaders will have been delighted to learn after the Queen’s Birthday Parade that Colonel The Life Guards, Lord Guthrie, was promoted to the honorary rank of Field Marshal by Her Majesty The Queen in June last year. It appears that everybody - with the exception of Her Majesty - had assumed that this rank had been abolished and so it was a great thrill for us all to have received this very exciting news. Soon afterwards, our newly promoted Field Marshal asked me to investigate which other Colonels of The Life Guards (of either Regiment) had also been a Field Marshal. The research proved interesting and informative since the Hon Sec could only think of one. But first a little about the history of the rank itself. The insignia of a Field Marshal in the British Army comprises two crossed batons in a wreath of oak leaves, with a crown above. On appointment, a Field Marshal is presented with a gold-tipped baton that he carries on cer-

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emonial occasions. Interestingly, Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, held the rank of a Field Marshal, or equivalent rank, in eight armies. It is of course traditionally the highest military rank in an army and is the equivalent to an Admiral of the Fleet in the Navy and a Marshal of the Air Force in the RAF. The office of ‘Marshal’ was known in England from the 12th Century, and a dictionary definition details a marshal as ‘arranging ceremonies, controlling procedures’. The introduction of the modern military title in Great Britain is a relative latecomer and was introduced by King George II. The 1st Earl of Orkney became the first Field Marshal in 1736. Around 15 years later, the rank appeared in its shortened form simply as ‘Marshal’ in the additional verse to God Save the King which, demonstrating anti-Jacobite sentiment, expressed the hope that Marshal Wade would crush

Rank Insignia Field Marshal


the Rebellious Scots. During the early part of the 20th Century, the Chief of the Imperial General Staff (later renamed Chief of the General Staff) was usually a Field Marshal. After the creation of the office of Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS), army occupants of that office were Field Marshals until the 1990s. The current practice is that no Field Marshals are to be routinely appointed in peacetime, the last being Field Marshal The Rt Hon Lord Inge in 1994 before the changes made after 1997, although members of the Royal Family and certain other very senior officers are still eligible to be appointed. None have been appointed since the general sus-

1st Viscount Combermere: Colonel 1st Life Guards (1829 - 1865) and promoted to Field Marshal 1855

Francis Wallace Grenfell, 1st Baron Grenfell: Colonel 2nd Life Guards (1905 - 1907) and Colonel 1st Life Guards (1907 - 1920) and promoted Field Marshal 1908

pension of promotions to the rank until the promotion of our Colonel to the honorary rank in June 2012. Lord Guthrie had in fact been the first CDS not to be promoted to Field Marshal during his term in office.

HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duke of Kent are the Field Marshals, and there are 5 others – Lord Bramall, Lord Vincent, Sir John Chapple, Lord Inge, and now Lord Guthrie.

Admirals of the Fleet, Field Marshals, and Marshals of the Royal Air Force do not retire, and remain on the active list, as the rank is conferred for life. Following the suspension of the rank, all former chiefs of staff (holding 4-star rank) continued this tradition of being retained in The Army List as active even though they had retired, and being considered on 'half pay'.

The Royal Marines do not have an equivalent rank , although the position of Captain General Royal Marines has the same insignia as an army Field Marshal.

Traditionally, the British monarch is a Field Marshal. Of the Royal Family,

Field Marshal Stapleton Cotton, 1st Viscount Combermere was the 1st Colonel LG, holding the rank of Field Marshal. Here he is, with his successors:

George Charles Bingham, 3rd Earl of Lucan: Colonel 1st Life Guards (1865 - 1888) and promoted to Field Marshal 1887

Prince William Augustus Edward of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach: Colonel 1st Life Guards (1888 - 1902) and promoted Field Marshal 1897

Edmund Allenby, 1st Viscount Allenby: Colonel 1st Life Guards (1920 - 1922) and on amalgamation of 1st and 2nd Regiments became Colonel The Life Guards (1922 - 1932) and promoted Field Marshal 1919

1st Baron Harding of Petherton: Colonel LG (1957 - 1964) and promoted Field Marshal 1953

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A Service of Thanksgiving to Commemorate the 70th Anniversary of The Battle of El Alamein by Sergeant Ron McBride - formerly 1st Royal Dragoons 1940-1946

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he Second Battle of El Alamein took place over 13 days from 23 October – 4 November 1942 and the Allies' victory marked a major turning point in the Western Desert Campaign of the Second World War. “The battle of El Alamein was Montgomery’s first battle as an Army Commander, it went well, and then it turned into the usual stalemate. I was at that time in the 1st Royal Dragoons, who were being held in reserve waiting to exploit the breakout. We were ordered to circumvent the Quarthara Depression that was considered impossible by both sides, and attack Rommel from the rear. This action turned the tide of the battle, and after that, Montgomery always insisted that the Royal Dragoons should always be involved in any other attacks which he led”. A Service of Thanksgiving to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of El Alamein was held in Westminster Abbey on Saturday 27 October 2012 and a number of Household Cavalry veterans and invited families attended. The service commemorated the comradeship of the desert troops, and celebrated the courage and quality of the Commonwealth divisions and nationalities that fought alongside each other, acknowledging the mutual respect and chivalry on the battlefield between the opposing armies. Thanks were given for the contribution made by the Royal Navy and the Desert Air Force. The service in the appropriate setting of the historic Westminster Abbey was dignified, impressive and moving and Ted Hartland and our wives were so glad to have been present.

the battle we were told not to bed down but get as much sleep as possible and be ready to move and exploit any gaps ion the German lines that might occur. We were positioned just behind the assault troops and in front of the guns so when they opened up the noise and the shells whistling overhead was tremendous, so sleep was out of the question, but the call to move never came after the six hour bombardment and attacks by the various forces. For the next few days we were moved along the line when it looked as if we might be needed but to no avail. On the 2nd of November we were told the infantry were going to try and open a gap in the North for us to go through. This they did and in the half moonlight we moved through the German line passing their vehicles and some soldiers moving about without a single challenge, It was nerve wracking but just unbelievable, they must have thought we were their own lot pulling back as their position was becoming untenable. After a short distance we turned south and in daylight put on some speed and in no time ran into hordes of Italians. We were as a Royals magazine reported “The cats among Rommel’s pigeons”, as the Italians, who seem to have been left to their fate by the now withdrawing Germans, willingly surrendered. They were disarmed, and told to march east, and we set about destroying vehicles and equipment. We then went off in pursuit of the German rearguard.

On emerging after the service we were greeted by crowds of people and were touched by the reception.

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WE WERE THE CAT AMONG ROMMEL’S PIGEONS from an unknown 1RD source Armoured cars of the Royal Dragoons executed one of the 8th Army’s most spectacular manoeuvres when they broke through Rommel’s lines on 2nd November 1942 and in four days destroyed 200 vehicles, captured and destroyed at least 30 and cut many phone lines. The story is told here by a leader of one of the armoured squadrons. We attribute the luck which attended our initial breakthrough to the splendid work of the infantry and the artillery, which paved the way. We left our location and passed through the minefields in single file. No shot was fired at us. The only impediment to our progress occurred when the first car ran into an 88mm gun-pit filled with dead Germans. One or two more cars, including three petrol replenishment lorries got stuck in slit trenches, but most of them pulled out when dawn broke and fought their way up to us. The enemy was too astounded to do anything as we came through, or else the Italian section thought we were Germans and the German section thought we were Italians. They waved their Swastika flags at us with vigour and we replied with “Achtung!” and anything else we could think of which, with a wave and answering wave, would get us through their lines.

During the service my mind went back to Alamein and my thoughts about the coming battle. After a few years of forward and back I hoped Gen Montgomery was right when he intimated that this time there would be no coming back. With new equipment such as the Humber A/C my role was drastically changed from being the operator sitting in the back of the Marmon Harrington to sharing the turret with the Squadron Leader as the radio operator and gunner of the two machine guns. On the eve of

Sgt McBride in the new Humber armoured car, 1942, just after Alamein

Sgt McBride at work, 1941, in the Marmon Herrington armoured car

As it grew lighter they stared and blinked at us. Although a warning artillery barrage had been going on all night they couldn’t believe their eyes. They would goggle at us from short range, see our berets, bolt away a few yards, pause as if they didn’t think it was true and come back to take another look. We passed within ten yards of the muzzles of an entire battery of field artillery. Right down the column we went with


Germans standing by their guns and fortunately failing to let them off. One of them would suddenly see we were British and run a few yards to tell someone else. Then both of them would stare unbelievingly. We awoke the Quartermaster. As the dawn broke we passed a man in bed. From the mass of vehicles and equipment surrounding him he was obviously an Italian quartermaster. We woke him up by tossing a Verey light into his blankets. He broke the record for the sitting high jump! Into one of his lorries we heaved a hand grenade, the results on the lorry were most satisfactory, but they scared the second-in-command who, following in his armoured car had failed to see us toss the grenade. Picking our way through trenches and gun positions we came upon what was evidently a “permanent” headquarters. Lorries were dug in, men were asleep everywhere. They were surprised to wake up and see their lorries go up in smoke one by one. We were now some nine miles behind their lines and their astonishment had been so colossal that we hadn’t had one shot fired at us. It was full daylight and getting amongst the “soft” transport our work of destruction began. In the first quarter of an hour the two squadrons destroyed forty lorries by simply putting a bullet through the petrol tanks and putting a match to the leak. The crews of lorries which had got bogged in the breakthrough transferred themselves to German vehicles holding petrol. Spare men climbed aboard Italian vehicles mounted with Breda guns and we pushed across the desert. Germans panicked from their lorries into slit trenches. We had no time to take prisoners. We just took their weapons and told them to commence walking east. Only those who refused were shot. Few refused. The majority were most anxious to oblige us in every way

and readily assisted in draining vehicles we wished to immobilize. The Italians asked for greater consideration. They wanted to come with us, clinging to the sides of our armoured cars as they fought each other to come aboard. To stop these poignant scenes a troop leader asked for one of their officers. Half a dozen stepped forward. We explained we couldn’t take them all and skimming off the cream, pushed on with a Colonel and two Majors clinging for dear life round the muzzles of our two-pounders. Bumped by bombs from the air. Up till now we had had no casualties except three petrol lorries and one armoured car jammed way back in the minefields. The commander of the armoured car surprised our headquarters by returning to our own lines the following morning unarmed and driving thirty Italians before him. The columns of smoke climbing up from the lorries we burned attracted the attention of tanks and aircraft. We managed to dodge the tanks but the aircraft pestered us throughout the next four days. The German pilot adopted a novel form of bombing. He had probably grown tired of aiming at the small target offered by an armoured car and attaching a bomb on a piece of rope suspended from his Me 109 flew over us hoping to bump the bomb into our turrets. After 24 unsuccessful attempts the bomb hit the ground and exploded causing irreparable damage to his piece of rope. The armour of our cars was excellent and the only casualties inflicted on us from the air were on the German lorries we shanghaied to come along with us. We had one personal casualty – one of the Italian Majors swinging around the turret was shot off by one of his own planes. After that we allowed the other two Italians to walk it. Then the two squadrons parted, one continuing due west, the other going south-west. In the south we cut the Axis telephone lines connecting the left and

right flanks of their Alamein line and added a little more to the general confusion. For the remainder of the first day we sat astride their lines of supply holding up and destroying lorries as they arrived to supply front-line troops. This highway robbery continued for another three days without variation except that instead of burning vehicles and so attracting aircraft, we merely rendered them useless. Ever since we raided the headquarters we had had reprisals sent out after us. Slow flying reconnaissance Storchs aircraft came after us. We shot one down. We also came across some aircraft, a marvellous target for our bombers and sent back the information that they were waiting on the airfield to be destroyed. In an astonishingly short time our bombers were over – and so were their aircraft. There was an amusing incident when we came across a South African pilot who had been ground strafing. He was shot down practically under the wheels of one of our armoured cars. Expecting to be man-handled so far behind enemy lines, he couldn’t believe his eyes when he realised we were British. And so we stayed fifteen miles behind Rommel’s lines. The only real battle we had was on 2nd November, when our break-through took place. We heard later when told that British tanks had broken through, that Rommel’s reply had been, “Oh yes, I know that” in reference to our armoured cars. At the time our tanks really had broken through. Having waylaid a number of vehicles containing retreating German troops, we met up with several 50mm anti-tank guns. Things looked black for us when we met the Fighting French coming west. Fortunately for us mutual recognition came quickly and together we compelled the enemy to leave behind many anti-tank guns and some field guns which he had in tow. With this our job was over. There was no need to return. The Eighth Army had come to meet us.

Recollections of the 1953 Standards Parade by Mr TW Arblaster - formerly The Life Guards June 1948 to July 1953

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wonder if anyone remembers when HM The Queen gave the Household Cavalry new Standards in Windsor on the 28th April 1953. We had to ride the horses down to Windsor. Before the motorway we had to use the old Bath Road past Heathrow Airport. At that time the first jets were landing at Heathrow and we did not know how low they came or how much

noise they made. It frightened everyone, horses, and men to see a jet about 200 yards over you. What happened next! There were men and horses all over the road, people’s gardens and nearly as far as Slough. It took us at least two hours to get everything back to normal and one lady asked if we could fetch a horse out of her back garden as he was eating her vegetables! We had a few cuts and bruises to the horses and men, but no

serious injury. We were billeted in the racecourse; stables for the horses - tents for the rest of us. After a few rehearsals everything went perfectly as it always does. We were not allowed to go on the racecourse, but we could swim in the Thames if you had any time left. When it was over we all packed up and rode back to Knightsbridge with no

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problems. I think we left Knightsbridge at 6:00am and reached Windsor at about 5:00pm. I have just found the programmes for Parade but there are a few more Battle Honours on our new ones for 2014. I still have the programmes for the 28 April 1953.

Do they still go to Pirbright? That was a longer ride for us, but made a change from guards and escorts, but we were still in tents with the horses on the horse lines, but it was very nice when it did not rain - memories for a lot of us now in our 80s.

from Pirbright to London after Summer Camp, the last occasion probably being in 1983, still past Heathrow. Regimental Training (Summer Camp) transferred from Stoneycastle Camp, Pirbright to the former RAF Sopley site, before going to Thetford, Norfolk in the late 80’s.

Editor: No longer does HCMR ride back

Abu Klea – Memorials

by Capt W F D Morley formerly RHG/D

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ttached are some of the pictures of our successful trip to Abu Klea as they might be of interest to the Journal’s readership. It took some light persuasion of the local police (one of whom we kidnapped as an interpreter) who thought we were most strange. It is situated about an hour and a half‘s drive

from the nearest road but was extremely good fun trying to get there. Hideously hot and the temp was 45 degrees when we arrived; I could not imagine fighting in that.

order. We thought the largest one (pictured below) might have been that of the True Blue, Col Frederick Gustavus Burnaby RHG. The trip went on well via Khartoum.

The memorial and graves were still there untouched in pretty immaculate

Capt Morley and driver/interpreter at the memorial

Capt Morley by the likely gravesite

A Light Hearted Recollection of the Life Guards in the Canal Zone - 16 January 1954 - 11 March 1956 by Mr KW Iveson, formerly The Life Guards 1952 - 1978

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f anyone were to ask me which period of my time spent in The Life Guards was the happiest I would say the time spent in the Canal Zone. Arriving at Port Said in January 1954 we travelled along the dusty road to Balaclava Camp, Fanara, near Fayid, which was to be our home for the next two years plus. At least we knew the weather was going to be nice. I was a 19 year old LCpl and employed as the Squadron Clerk. HQ Squadron SCM and a father figure to me, was Joe Ratcliffe. Although we received a generous supply of cigarettes Joe had a small tobacco tin. He used to roll his own cigarettes and religiously used to count them. If one was missing he used to say, “Have you been at my fags again young Iveson.” Hence my nickname ‘fags Iveson’, which stuck with me for 24 years until released in 1978. The SQMC was Tubby Burman who paid us every week although there was little to

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spend our money on; most of it went on cigarettes and Stella beer. The Squadron Leader was ‘Dickie Crossfield’ an officer and a gentleman. I was told he owned Crosse and Blackwell, the bean kings!! Although I never did find out if it was true. We all lived in 4-man tents. I shared a tent with Corporal Frank Houchen, a Cpl in the Regimental Police, second from the left in the group photograph. The other two occupants were Cpl Don Warren, an MT Corporal, and Jim Richards the HQ Sqn Pay Clerk. Frank was in charge of the guard dog called Flick, who slept in our tent at night. He was supposed to deter intruders but for an Alsatian he was a lovable old dog who liked nothing better than to curl up on Frank’s bed. Our daily routine followed the same path every day. Up with the sun at about 0600hrs for our daily session of physical training under the eagle eye of CSMI Harrington, APTC and

On alternative transport at Port Fouad

Cpls Mick Griffiths and Alan Peters. After PT a quick shower, breakfast and then work in the office until 1300hrs,


ficers’ Mess Senior NCO. Other HQ personalities were: HQ Storeman, Buster Martin, and his young assistant Tpr Swann. HQ Ration Storeman Mick Wren – everybody’s friend!! In charge of the cookhouse was SQMC Charlie Beales, CoH Jack Troif, (pronounced Trough) and Cpl Lofty Walsh. You were always guaranteed a sausage Cpl Frank Houchen (2nd left) with whom I shared a tent sandwich around lunch, and then the afternoon was ours the back of the cookhouse. Christmas to either sleep in the tent or go swimDinner was an enjoyable affair, see the ming or for the more energetic of us a menu for 1954. The menu for 1955 was game of cricket or basketball. exactly the same except there were no parsnips! After dinner, and a copious The Commanding Officer was Lieutensupply to drink and cigarettes, we all reant Colonel WH Gerard Leigh, Adjutired to the ablutions. On arrival in 1954 tant Captain MP Wyndham, RCM John the latrines had been situated near the Jenkins, figures we hardly saw unless tent lines and every so often new ones we had to report to the Orderly Room were dug and before we left it was a for minor misdemeanours. The Chief good 15 minutes walk. I must also menClerk was ‘Wilkie Wilkinson’, a man tion LCoH Dickie Powell in the Quarterwho loved cheese and onion sandwichmaster’s and CoH Ben Davies, the MT es amply supplied by Dris Jones, the OfCoH who looked like Stanley Baker and

The autographed Christmas Dinner menus from 1954

was just as tough. Cpl Tresize the petrol Storeman who swam Lake Timsah, and I also believe Charlie Beales floated across. Occasionally we were granted leave which was spent at Port Fouad, see the camel photo. People said I should have joined the Long Range Desert Group. Before closing, I would like to mention just one more personality, at the time SCM Eric (Bunker) Lloyd. Having been promoted to Corporal I had to march the night guard down to the parade ground by the Orderly Room. I must have drawn the short straw for SCM Lloyd was duty SCM that night. A fairer more outstanding soldier I never met. We came back to Liverpool in March 1956, and soon after the Suez Crisis occurred at the same time my wedding was planned. I got married in a hurry, returned to the Regiment, we left Windsor for Southampton, only to be told it was all over, we were not required, and we went back to Windsor the next day. I could go on but I hope there are a few readers who can recollect these two years. Happy Days.

A substantial feast for Christmas 1954 - which was the same in 1955, less parsnips!

A Lifelong Love of Horses - Anthony John Dampier Late The Life Guards (1954 - 1957)

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nthony John Dampier sadly passed away on the 18th November 2011 surrounded by his family following a horse riding accident. As a young man he enlisted into the Household Cavalry and served for three years. Growing up he told us of his many adventures, the horses and camaraderie of those in the Regiment. He was a romantic and looked back with fond memories of riding out on early morning exercise at daybreak as the sun rose over London.

by Becky Dampier

On leaving The Life Guards, his love of horses continued and over the years. Dad was involved in the opening and managing both his own and others’ riding schools. He travelled the world spending time in Cyprus, America and as a Captain in the Sultanate of Oman’s Cavalry. His love of horses led him to write and have two books published; ‘The Kingdom of the Work Horse’ and later ‘A Reckless

Ride’ which retells many of the stories Dad had told us over the years. We are lucky that we have his words on paper and his grandchildren will be able to read of his full life filled with adventure. Before Dad passed away he had been putting the final touches to his third book by the name of ‘Lemberg’. The life story is about a Trahkenen horse from its birth in Prussia, through the Second World War, to serving in the Household

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Sitting astride my well trained pal, A prick of the spur would make him prance, Impressing the girls, their eyes would dance.

In the school for troop drill practice, Flying changes and half passes, Troop in fours side by side, Saturday morning was blanket ride, As smart as I could be, Riding in the Household Cavalry, My back was straight my legs so long, And I loved my horse she could do no wrong.

Squadron Corporal Major Thompson, DCM, winner of the King George V Cup medal on ‘Lemburg’

Cavalry. With the help and support of his friend and editor we intend to have this book published to ensure his work is completed. Dad also wrote poetry from his observations of life, memories, love, personal reflections and of course horses. Once I was a Soldier

Tpr Dampier in No 1 Dress

Once I was a soldier in the Cavalry, Scarlet coat and shiny boots That came about my knee Swan neck spurs a sword at side A coal black horse upon to ride.

Troop the Colour

Past ‘Buck’ Palace, down the Mall,

Troop the Colour, Escort formation, Watched by eyes of every nation, Bits and Bright Chain, spur and cuirass, Chinked and sparkled when we rode past,

Tpr Dampier ready for QLG

Sailing

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by Jack Preece, formerly The Blues and Royals

hen it comes to sports I am not, nor ever have been, a Gladiator: I can ride horses and shoot with a variety of weapons but when volunteers were required for games involving sweating and effort, I was usually to be found elsewhere. However, my regimental qualifications record card has an entry for May 1978 which confirms me as an ‘Offshore Sailing Hand’, and about which I also generally keep quiet. I qualified for this distinction in the following manner. The regiment had a yacht lying in a disused hangar behind the riding school in Lippe Detmold, Germany but insufficient crewmen to renovate and sail it so they looked around for available soldiers with suitable sailing backgrounds to go on a course. I was unfortunate enough to have spent six years in the Merchant Navy prior to joining the Army and although my seagoing experience was on nothing afloat under 25,000 tons, it was considered that I was half-way qualified. The other chap 1

a. A child. b. A saucy girl or young woman

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picked to accompany me was a tank gunner called Mick Summerville and had already done some boating on a lake somewhere and was therefore eminently suitable. Protestations to higher authority were waved aside and we left for Kiel in northern Germany from Detmold on April 26th 1978 driven by a daydreaming trooper from MT in a backfiring Land Rover. We ran out of petrol on the Autobahn near Hanover a couple of hours later and had to push it to a garage in a village where we paid for the fuel from our own pockets as the proprietor wouldn’t accept the petrol coupons supplied for that purpose by the Military Authorities. This was a good start and with our luck things could only improve. Arriving at last at Kiel Yacht Club we discovered that only Club Members were eligible for the course and, since the daydreaming driver had departed swiftly for home, we forked out the

Club joining fee and subscriptions for the month. Before supper we were introduced to our boat and the rest of the crew. The potential skipper of our boat ‘Foil’ was a chit of a girl1 about my daughter’s age. Her father was the Club Commodore and if she passed the course she would become a fully-fledged skipper. She began introductions by giving us a lesson in stowage and I thought that if we passed the course I should be very surprised. Mick remarked in a casual way on how much more space there was for everything than in the turret of a Chieftain Battle Tank. No response from the chit of a girl so we continued to listen attentively. The fourth crew member was our mentor and instructor Bill, a Padre in the Royal Army Chaplains Department. I was slightly reassured by this imagining that at least we had a direct link on the Regimental Net with Him. After I had cooked our evening meal (“Everyone must muck in and take turns”) we had a pep talk by the Senior Instructor


of the club, Captain Roger Justice of the Royal Engineers. Many references were made to the “Course of Justice running smooth” and how important it was for none of us to “make waves” after which we returned to ‘Foil’ to get our heads down. My bunk was in the anchor locker and a pointed head was needed to fit into it properly. After I had cooked breakfast the following morning we were issued with our nautical gear. My over-trousers didn’t fit and I rigged them with string. Things were becoming even more exciting now with gales lashing the jetty so we couldn’t sail but did lots of theory instead. We were taught by the chit of a girl to tie five different knots and they all looked like Bowlines. She then practiced us in raising, lowering and changing the headsail, then picking it up out of the water and changing it again. Because we were there to learn how to sail properly, all the boats had had their engines removed and there was a tricky technique to be learned in getting away from the Dolphins (upright wooden poles in the water to which the boats were moored) by pulling on ropes with enough force to shoot us out into midstream and, hopefully, under way. We watched as Captain Justice and his crew successfully demonstrated this technique in Force 8 winds. We were very impressed! Our crew was so impressed with my culinary efforts that I was appointed cook for the duration of the course; so much for rank having it’s privileges. Afterwards all the instructors got together with the potential skippers and impressed each other with their local knowledge of winds, shores, bars and cabarets. Mick sat at the bar listening to them and impressed me with his beer consumption. I impressed myself by remembering how to tie a bowline six hours after I had been taught it. I finally retired to my anchor chain hotel at 2100 hours. Chit of a girl, who is the smallest crewmember, has the largest bunk. On day three we attended a first aid lecture. We dealt with ‘sucking wounds of the chest,’ shock and artificial resuscitation. “There are only five orifices in the human body, as long as you can remember which ones to blow into you can’t go wrong”. The barometer rose two points that morning and we sailed out of Kiel in Force 7 gusting 8, for Sonderberg in Denmark at 1000 hours. Two minutes later we went aground under the windows of the yacht club house. Chit of a girl very red faced and not amused, she implied that we were not pulling hard enough on the ropes to get us off the dolphins. Mick and I vigorously defended ourselves and pointed out that it

was a damned silly idea to take the engine out of a boat designed to have one and which could have got us under way initially with no problems. After much effort we eventually got to the middle of Kiel harbour and had much fun in the busy shipping lanes. Discovered that the ‘Bitter End’ was the term given to a knot tied in the end of the anchor rope and that ours was not attached to the bottom of the boat. Returned to the Clubhouse at 1700 hours completely exhausted and had a welcome hot shower. That night I discovered that by putting one foot on top of the other and turning around 180 degrees I fit much more comfortably in my pointed bunk. The wind dropped to Force 5 at dusk. On the fourth day the barometer was steady and the wind had dropped again. We had cereals for breakfast (I was getting fed up with cooking). Bill, (whom I discovered wore the rank of Lt Col and so was probably a bishop or something similar), Mick and Chit of a girl went ashore to the club canteen for their breakfast. Afterwards Bill told Mick and I to let chit of a girl take more of the initiative. If she passes the course she would be teaching students who don’t necessarily think for themselves like tank crews do and therefore needed to practice taking authority. We practiced the rest of the day raising and lowering the headsail and tying bowlines. The wind rose to Force 7 again and there was excitement because we may sail for Denmark at last. At 2100 hours we were stood down until morning so I retired to the pointy bit and slept. We left Kiel at 0500 hours on day 5 carrying number one headsail and five reefs. Very cold but cheerful. Choppy seas, Bill was sick, Mick was sick, I grew queasy and very uneasy watching them. Chit of a girl rosy cheeked and blossoming. Nine hours later we arrived at Sonderberg and I had psyched myself up with the prospect of a hot shower and dry clothes when HORROR – we didn’t stop! We sailed on past the dock with Bill talking earnestly about how important it was to get up the Alsund (a sort of huge canal) before the wind changed. I thought nothing could be more important than getting up that dock wall but chit of a girl had taken command again and we were kept busy ‘Lee Hoing’ up the Alsund channel for Faaborg. We were off Nordburg lighthouse at sunset when the wind changed to due east and rose to about Force 8. Chit of a girl was below at this juncture having a wrestle with the charts so we missed the approach lights to Faaborg. Went about and looked for familiar lights. Waves VERY high so couldn’t see lights long enough to determine their flash sequence. Chit of a girl was navigating

and forgot to keep the running log so now admitted she didn’t know where we were. All this excitement stimulates the bladder but Bill forbade anyone to use the toilet and open the seacocks to flush so she was forced to use a bucket in the cabin and pass it up to Mick to empty over the side. The final humiliation. Pitch black now and nasty bangs from below the waterline. All crockery, cutlery, sleeping bags and charts strewn and sodden in the centre aisle of the cabin. Water everywhere. Quite frightened but determined not to show it. Compass lights packed up – seawater probably shorting out the batteries, look up and confirmed, no running lights either. Now sailing on bearings from hand held Silva compass that I never go anywhere without. Bill has now been on the helm for 16 hours and won’t trust anyone else to take over. Lee side permanently under water and I realize that we’re all probably going to die before daylight. Begin to feel more angry than frightened, my son will not now inherit my Rolex wristwatch because it’ll be lying on the bottom of the Baltic. Sit close to the Padre as last thing I intend to do before we founder is to hit him. Always wondered what it would be like to hit a Colonel and get away with it. Ask him if we are enjoying ourselves as I haven’t sailed before and don’t want to miss anything. Chit of a girl says that we have just grazed a rock that isn’t marked on the charts at 54 degrees 54 minutes North by 10 degrees 31 minutes 4 seconds East surrounded by ten feet of water. Wonder how she can be so precise? Mick says he thinks we are ten miles north of where chit of a girl thinks we are. At 0400 hours we are almost run down by gigantic car ferry. Bill is pleased about this as it shows that we are still in the Baltic shipping lanes. I hold my council. I want to follow it into the narrow entrance of the harbour that it is heading for but Bill points out that we have no lights, no engine and if we meet another ferry coming out we’re snookered. Have discovered novel way of keeping sense of feeling in my wet feet. Remove Army plimsoles and four pairs of sodden, freezing socks and chafe vigorously. Don dry pair of socks from plastic bag in sea kitbag, replace inner three pairs of wet socks over dry ones and replace foot-ware. Works like diver’s wet suit principle. Thinking of land a lot. Sunrise on day six reveals a lighthouse on a headland glimpsed occasionally through the waves. Easier now: just like map reading ashore. Quickly get our bearings and limp towards sand shoals. Still alive! Arrived in Faaborg

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harbour at 0700 hours. Several boats on the course didn’t make it, one went aground on a lee shore, two went home to Kiel, one stayed in Sonderburg another in Kiel, and one ended up on the wrong side of the East German border in the highly sensitive missile area of Peenemunde. Jumped ashore and had hot shower and breakfast in the harbour restaurant. Euphoric feeling of safety, wonder how I shall tell the Bishop that I’m going home by train. Sat on the jetty for the remainder of the day with the other crews telling lies about wave heights and wind force. Tomorrow all the crews change over so that fresh skippers and new Instructors can judge what we have learned by practical ap-

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plication on the homeward run. Still haven’t decided what train to catch.

in the bar until 2100 hours when chit of a girl arrived in ‘Foil’ with new crew.

The following day with the aid of a little coercion and blackmail, Mick and I transferred to ‘Flamingo’, an enormous yacht taken from the Germans after the War with 100 metres of sail and an ENGINE! Pure luxury – the skipper let us take turns driving it, motoring out of Faaborg at 1100 hours, sails raised at a leisurely pace in our own time, then relaxed on a beautiful teak and mahogany deck heading due south for home. Passed the ‘Bulk’ light at 1650 hours with 36 miles on the log. Came into Friedricksort at 1910 hours under power as no “puff”. Beautiful evening, waited

Last day of course – showed Captain Justice that I could tie bowlines, pointed to Pushpit, Pulpit, Bow, Beam and Stern. Demonstrated how to blow up Mick’s nose in an emergency and found a box of distress signal flares behind the cooking stove. Was congratulated on how calm we were in a tense situation and informed that we were now proper ‘Off Shore Hands’. On the way home Mick remarked that he might take up parachuting as a sport but that he wasn’t that keen on sailing. Chit of a girl is now an instructor.

Identifying members of the Royal Horse Guards

n the Household Cavalry Journal 2010/11 the Editor asked if anyone could name some of the members of RHG who were shown in photographs on page 136 of the Household Cavalry Journal 2010/11; the individuals who were serving with the Governor’s Escort Troop of 1959 at Government House, Nicosia, Cyprus when the photographs were taken. Mr Fred Alvis formerly of RHG and now living in Spain has kindly provided information regarding the identities of those in the photographs:

RHG outside Government House, Cyprus 1959

RHG NCO’s outside Government House, Cyprus 1959 L-R: Cpl Fred Alvis (B Sqn), Cpl Mick Harrison (C Sqn), CoH Dickie Horton (B Sqn), Cpl Dave Smith (C Sqn), Cpl Dave Rogers (A Sqn), Cpl Tony Young (B Sqn)

RHG Troopers outside Government House, Cyprus 1959 Tprs Hill, Baker, Perry, Morris, Chapman, Webb, Chapman 81

Standing: Cpl Young, Cpl Alvis, Tpr Hill, CoH Horton, Lt Burbury, His Excellency The Governor, SQMC Stringer, Cpl Smith, Cpl Rodgers, Cpl Harrison

Cpl Fred Alvis commanding a Ferret Scout Car as part of the Governor’s Escort Troop Cyprus 1959

Mr Alvis, has asked that his best wishes are sent to anyone with whom he served during his service with the Royal Horse Guards (The Blues).

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Egypt – Christmas 1946 from Mr Donald Brookman

Is anyone old enough to remember Christmas 1946 – Egypt? The three photographs below recall times at El Amiriya in 1946 – a group of chums playing football, with RCM Hyland as goalkeeper and SCM Ring as the referee.

SCM Ring (referee)

El Amiriya in 1946

Back Row L-R: Don Brookman, Gordon Peate, Philpott, Watkin, Bill (Slygo) Taylor Front Row L-R: Braybrooke, Jumbo Bowden, George Neale, Pete Green, Ken Hale

RCM Hyland (in goal)

Yeoman Service

On Thursday 26th January 2012 Capt WAB Henderson was invested with the Royal Victorian medal by Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace. The photograph below is of his family and fellow Yeomen of the Guard.

L to R (all Yeoman are former Life Guards): Mr Dave Evans, Mr Tom Lee, WO2 (SQMS) Lisa Bean, Captain Bill Henderson, Bill’s grandson Connor from Australia, Mr Bob Daysmith, Bill’s youngest son Philip and Mr Paul Richards

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Photograph Albums

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by Mr AW Rowlinson formerly The Life Guards

his short article, written by Arthur Rowlinson – a long time LG Regional Representative – explains how he started his photographic record of Household Cavalrymen of the 20th Century. During my army service I never ever had a camera and I don’t remember any mates having one either, but someone must have owned one because I came by photographs taken during the war with myself, and a number of comrades, on them. These were shoved, I say shoved, into an old wallet in my kit, and to some degree were forgotten because with the wartime service there were other things to think about; but then men went on leave at sometime and of course, with pride, I’m sure, went to a real photographer to pose for their photograph to give maybe to his girlfriend or mum and dad. After all many of these had been called up. After the war and finding so many loose photographs I decided to place them in an album, and along with the photos of mates, and knowing their names, wrote these down. Whilst serving in the late 1940s with the mounted regiment at Knightsbridge, there was an old photographer who wandered in and out of barracks and Whitehall taking pictures without the knowledge of any of us. So later many picked up photographs from him when he came into the barracks - and of course with the ceremonial uniforms men would want to pose for a picture - which, got swapped. On leaving the army I had so many photographs I had to buy larger albums. At that time I became Area

Representative for The Life Guards so, having addresses and telephone phone numbers, I gathered many photographs. I advertised in some newspapers, also Service Pals on TV, and these were a good help as some relatives of old Household Cavalrymen of the early 20th Century had photographs which they sent me. Because the two wartime regiments were composite there were also many Royal Horse Guards included on some pictures, so that’s the reason why the five albums became Household Cavalry. In 20 years I collected over 2,000 men on photograph and to make it easier for research, or for future families to seek out old members, all the names, with some detail, I placed in an alphabetical register. After a year of waiting for 175 promised photographs, which have never turned up, I decided it was time to present the five albums and alphabetical register to the Museum, which is where they are now for all to view.

Some of the really old photographs could have been lost forever; however, they can soldier on within the regiment. Editor. Very sadly, shortly after we received this article, Arthur died. He was a great correspondent, and stalwart supporter.

The Tigers of the Sungai - with C Squadron, The Life Guards in the Far East 1966 - 1968 by Richard Golding with photographs by Cliff Hales formerly The Life Guards

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he Regiment had been in the Far East for over two years, the majority of us had never been home. C Squadron had been in Sarawak, Malaya, Hong Kong and periods in Singapore, the Regimental HQ. Our base was Paroi Camp, Seremban, a medium sized town of no architectural significance some 40 miles south of Kuala Lumpur. The Squadron was a self-contained unit numbering around 130 which included an air squadron of Sioux helicopters. We were coming to the end of our stay in Malaya and would be going home in the autumn of 1968. We sometimes played rugby against a local team in Seremban and after

matches would have a drink in the mess. It was here we met Dara Singh (brave lion), who was one of the rugby club administrators. He lived in town and was a well known personality in Malaya. His family were Indian, his father served in the Bengal Lancers (1st Duke of York’s Own). Dara was born in Taiping in Malaya and as he was at an English school he remained there and after his family returned to India he was looked after by a Chinese family, hence he became fluent in Mandarin, Cantonese, Hindustani, Malay and English, which would prove invaluable during the war as a translator. After training in mechanics and transport he volunteered in 1939, then in his mid 20s, to join the

Nangiao ji gong (transport) to fight in the Sino-Japanese war under Chiang Kia-Shek. In charge of a large number of transport vehicles he was promoted to Colonel supporting the 2nd Battalion of the Sixth Chinese Squadron. He was noticed by General (Vinegar Joe) Stillwell, the American commander in Burma and, because of his linguistic skills, he became General Stillwell’s translator and bodyguard. They remained lifelong friends for many years after the war until the General died. Working for Stillwell, Dara met Lord Mountbatten many times. Lord Mountbatten was Supreme Allied Commander South East Asia, later taking the Japanese surrender in Singapore. He became Earl Mountbat-

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Earl Mountbatten of Burma and Col Dara Singh at a Burma star reunion

ten of Burma and Viceroy of India and, of course, Colonel of The Life Guards. As our Colonel we were privileged to meet him when he visited us at Paroi in 1967. After the war Dara met him a few times at Burma reunions in Kuala Lumpur. In later years he was head of the Department of Aborigines developing fortifications for the Malay police in the 1950s Emergency. Subsequently he became Head Gamekeeper and Warden for the Penang State Wildlife Department, then also for Negeri Sembilan and Selangor States, hence our introduction to the Tigers. With his Wildlife Department background Dara suggested a wild game shoot in Eastern Malaya where he had contacts. Resistance was low, and several of us readily agreed. We took leave and travelled some 200 miles, on not the best roads in the world, to the north east in three long wheel base land rovers with trailers packed with jerry cans of fuel and food for a couple of weeks, along with all the necessary equipment for life in the wild, and the appropriate hardware. Our party of eight plus Dara Singh comprised two game rangers and a cook, the then CoHs Cliff Hales, Maurice (Lofty) Young and his son, Don York, Les Lumb, Cpl Doug Westcar and myself. Our destination was Terangganu, a remote and rural State in east Malaya bordering what is now the Taman Negara National Park, a must for the present day Malayan wildlife experience. The State’s coast lies on the South China Sea where, 50 miles offshore from Kuantan, where the Japanese sank HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse by air torpedo attack three days after Pearl Harbour in December 1941 with 840 lost. Unfortunately there was no air support

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The Shooting Party. Standing L to R: Don York, Maurice Young, Richard Golding, Dara Singh, Maurice Young’s son. Sitting L to R: Les Lumb, Doug Westcar, two Game Rangers

available at the time. It was a disastrous event which preceded the fall of Singapore. The coast was isolated then but is now the location of one of Malaya’s most exclusive beach hotel, The Tanjong Jara Resort which is close to Rantua Abang, the location for viewing Giant Leatherback Turtles when they come ashore in the summer to bury their eggs on the beach. I fondly remember in 1967 swimming alongside a female turtle with one of its young, off the Pulau Perhentians, probably the most beautiful islands in Malaya. We left the rural road at a bridge across the river at Kampung Kuala Jengai, then followed a rough loggers track some miles further up stream until we reached a suitable location close to the river. Reminiscent of earlier days spending a week or so at a time patrolling the rivers and hill borders of Sarawak, with our machete we cut a clearing and built our basha. For building a hammock young saplings are ideal for threading through a hammock-like nylon sheet with sleeves the full length of each side and at both ends. The poles could then be either secured to trees or a cross frame to suspend the rigid hammock a respectable height off the ground, the higher the better. Inland Terangganu is dense with wildlife particularly near the rivers that drain into the South China Sea. There are Sanbar deer, barking deer, wild boar, bearded pigs, Tapir serow and sun bear – all prey to tigers. Also prey were elephant calves, goats, farming stock, rubber plantation workers and villagers living in the Kampungs along the rivers. Some years before our visit in the area a famous tiger called the Jerangau man-eater killed several villagers. Dara had secured permission for us to hunt

tiger through his contacts in the Wildlife Department, however wild boar would be somewhat easier. Other wildlife is superb in this area including bats, flying frogs and lizards, Macaques monkeys, gibbons, black panther, leopard cat (slightly larger than a domestic cat), civets and pangolins (ant eaters). The Malay tiger is smaller is smaller than the Indian. The length of the female is between 6’ to 8’ and averages up to a maximum of 190 lbs. The male ranges from 7’ to 9’ with up to a weight of 280 lbs. They can eat up to a maximum 40 lbs in one go, never eating the entrails of a kill but burying them. In the 1960s there were probably some 3000 tigers in Malaya, now the most recent estimates in 2003 were between 500 – 1500. The tiger is held in high regard in Malaya included on government insignia and appears on many Malay institutions, the Proton car, the emblem of the Football Association of Malaya not to mention the famous Singapore beer ‘Tiger’. Like many rainforest animals the tiger comes out at night to feed mainly in the dark. Tigers kill for both food and territory, their favourite mode of killing is to approach very quickly from behind and aim for the neck. At full flight they have been recorded as leaping some eight metres before pouncing on their prey. Rubber tappers were frequently attacked this way as they started work very early at dawn. Luckily the tiger’s favourite diet is wild pig as they are so common. We had permission to hunt, however, it is not an easy or pleasant activity for the hunter (or the hunted). We understood there had been loss of local kampung livestock so it could be justified. There certainly wasn’t anything gungho about it, just to be near them and possibly to see them would have been sufficient, to actually kill one at the


time would have been pointless except to help local villagers.

large game cartridge, and a powerful torch is essential.

On the advice of our two game rangers the hunt had to be precise, taking a 360 degree circle around the camp we would hunt in pairs adopting an arc of fire fanning outwards and away from the camp. The key is that not everybody does this at the same time for obvious reasons. Perhaps two would take a 90 degree angle towards the river, another two would take the opposite direction. It has to be said the chances of seeing a tiger with this method is almost nil, but it gives the opportunity to see tracks and signs of a local kill that the tiger has left. When they leave a partly eaten kill they always return to it, other animals would touch it only at their peril, which is the influence a tiger has over its territory.

When the tiger appears it is advisable to wait and gauge its position by sound, not easy as they are largely silent. As soon as the torch is switched on the opportunity to shoot has to be immediate or the tiger will be gone. Even the most accomplished of wildlife wardens frequently missed at this stage. The essential, of course, is to be certain and not to wound an escaping animal as this is the worst possible outcome. We took it in turns to sit in a hide and the stench of the bait was powerful, however we didn’t have sight of an animal at all. We were beginning to think there were no tigers in the area when one night we heard the obvious sound of one in the direction of the river, no more than a couple of hundred yards away. They have a Locals would typically use a pit or spring repertoire of sounds including a hiss, gun but the professional preference in grunt, snarls, coughing roar and a fullorder to catch a live beast was the trap. throated roar. The female sometimes A construction would be made of poles has a moaning call particularly when strapped together to make a cage with a attracting a male. This was definitely trap door. A live goat would be placed a roar, probably a territory warning to in a smaller cage to protect it and attract other animals or us. In the morning the tiger. When entering the cage the tiCliff Hales and I walked along the logger would trigger the door which would ging tracks nearby and saw the tiger’s fall behind him. The tiger generally large paw marks in the mud, a soberlikes to hunt at night and before dawn ing sight. There were also marks by the so detection is difficult. It is advisable river bank. At first glance it appeared that there are two in the hide to avoid to be two tigers as their front paws are one going to sleep. Armed with the apalmost double the size of the rear, but propriate hardware, a double barrelled they invariably travel alone. The rains 12 bore making use of a single shot lead had finished early in the year and as bullet, known as spherical balls, or LG summer the river was low and easy to wade across. We never caught a tiger but in retrospect there was considerable danger in roaming around in a tiger’s territory as disturbed they can be extremely dangerous. This was the end of an era for legal tiger hunting as four years later in 1972 there would be a preservation order. This was an experience of its time and didn’t result in a kill, but was after all an adventure in the Tigers’ world, hearing them, seeing their tracks and being The Game Shoot basha. close to them was enough. Richard Golding, Dara Singh and trackers

With a week’s beard growth and our safari nearing its end Cliff Hales and I decided to build a bamboo raft. The bamboo on the riverbank is enormous, twenty feet is not uncommon. The larger, thicker bamboo is a superb source of drinking water as each section of growth can hold up to a litre of water. Design was not too ambitious, a simple structure tied together with several empty jerry cans to help floatation. The photograph shows the raft before completion. The plan would be that the main party would leave with all the vehicles and equipment and would meet us at a bridge crossing the river some miles downstream. Once Cliff and I reached them we would then decide whether or not we would carry on for another 20 miles or so to Kuala Dungan and the mouth of the river. We cast off and drifted serenely downstream using a punt steering method with bamboo poles. The wildlife on the river banks in South East Asia is never disappointing. There are gibbons but most striking are the rhinoceros hornbill, which are wonderfully colourful with red and orange bills and numerous other beautifully coloured birds. The peace is wonderful. As we drifted downstream we frequently bottomed on the shallow riverbed, unfortunately this loosened the floats so much and, as the river was so low, we had to abandon the voyage at the meeting point. A pity as had the river been a little higher we would have gone the full 30 miles. We reached the coast, swam in the sea, and then began our 200 mile journey back to Paroi.

The bamboo raft on the Sungai Dungun during construction

“You’ve Never Had It So Good...”

A quotation by Harold MacMillan, British Prime Minister in 1957

P

ay varies with the length of engagement, number of years’ service, and whether married or single. For example, on a 9-year engagement, weekly rates are shown in the currency of 1965. The amounts within brackets ( ) show the conversion to decimalisation which was introduced to the UK 15 February on 1971, but you really have to multiply all the numbers by about 16 to get today’s equivalent.

Trooper BIII, after six months training: Single £8. 15. 0. (£8.75) per wk Married £13. 13. 0. (£13.65) per wk

Trooper Recruit, on joining: Single Under 21, married Over 21, married

Lance/Corporal, BII qualified N.C.O.: Single £10. 3. 0. (£10.15) per wk Married £15. 1. 0. (£15.05) per wk

£7.17. 6. (£7.87) per wk £11.14. 6. (£11.73) per wk £12. 15. 6. (£12.78) per wk

Trooper BII, fully qualified Troop soldier: Single £ 9. 5. 6. (£9. 28) per wk Married £14. 3. 6. (£14.18) per wk

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Corporal, BI qualified: Single Married

CoH SQMC SCM RCM

£11. 14. 6. (£11.73) per wk £16. 12. 6. (£16.63) per wk

Corporal of Horse (Sgt. equivalent, after 9 years’ total service): Single £14. 17. 6. (£14.87) per wk Married £20. 9. 6. (£20.48) per wk Squadron Corporal-Major (Sergeant-Major, after 9 years’ service): Single £17. 6. 6. (£17.33) per wk Married £23. 7. 3. (£23.73) per wk In addition • Ration Allowance of 6/ 10d (£0.64) per day, if married and accompanied, and for all leave. • Disturbance Allowance, for Duty Moves, of up to £50 if married. • Removal Expenses, Storage Charge Refunds for Furniture, whilst serving abroad. • Travelling Allowances, Local Overseas Allowances and all normal Civilian Allowances GRATUITIES After 12 years’ service, a sliding scale according to rank, rising to £570 for 21 years’ service. PENSIONS After 22 years’ service, a sliding scale according to Rank and number of years served. Minimum weekly Rates after 22 years are: Cpl £3. 6. 0. (£3.30) per wk

£4. 4. 4. (£4.21) per wk £4. 15. 4. (£4.76) per wk £5. 4. 6. (£5.23) per wk £5. 10. 0. (£5.50) per wk

LEAVE • Soldiers serving in U.K., receive 30 DAYS PAID LEAVE per year. • In British Army On the Rhine (BAOR), 42 DAYS per year. • If serving in B.A.O.R., 2 free-return flights and 1 return Rail Warrant per year. • In UK 3 free-return Rail Warrants per year. • All soldiers and their families in the UK travel at reduced Rail Fares. APPLICANTS FOR THE REGIMENT Must be above 5ft. 8in. in height, in sound physical condition, of proven good character, backed by references, and be able to prove intelligence and education of the required standard. All enquiries concerning the Regiment should be addressed to: Recruiting Information Office, Cavalry Barracks, Windsor Notes Total rate of inflation since 1965-2012 is 1,497.00% (or x 15). In 1965 inflation was 4.80% Source: This is Money - http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/ money/bills/article-1633409/Historic-inflation-calculatorvalue-money-changed-1900.html

Egyptian Conundrum Mr Trevor Furniss sent in the photograph below. He said that the picture was taken in Egypt (Port Tewfik) in 1947. Sadly he does not recall many of the names but does provide the following:

Top Row L to R: Tpr Shann, ?, Tpr Furniss, ??? None of the other names on the picture he recalls

He recalls that the group were at a transit camp before being split up to go to A Squadron The Life Guards in Jerusalem, C Squadron in Gaza and HQ Sqn in Sarafand. He says it would be wonderful to hear from any of those Old Comrades. If anyone has any news for Trevor please contact the Regimental Secretary who will pass the information on.

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Household Cavalry Journal 2012/13  
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