Official Association of Britain’s Brigade of Gurkhas

News and updates from around the world

Brigade of Gurkhas Golf Championship takes place

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On Wednesday 29 June golfers from all over the Brigade of Gurkhas gathered to take part in the Brigade Golf Championship held in the UK for only the second time.  Teams represented all parts of the Brigade, including representation from British Gurkhas Nepal, the ARRC Support Battalion and Gurkha Company Catterick.  In all 13 teams took part with a total of 52 players.  The day was organised by SO3 Plans/ QGOO Capt Muktiprasad Gurung RGR with help from HQBG staff. 

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Teams gathered at Windlesham Golf Course in time for coffee, buns and the obligatory competition briefing.  At 1044 hours Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas, Col James Robinson, hit the first drive, fortunately a clean shot down the middle of the fairway, followed by a lay-up into the stream in front of the 1st green!  The course was in excellent condition, however, the wind and rain ensured that the competitors would be challenged. 

At the conclusion of the competition all players enjoyed an excellent dinner in the club house which was followed by prize giving.  Colonel BG presented the prizes to the winning teams and individuals. 

IMG_7043 IMG_7081Teams were scored on full handicap and individuals on ¾ handicap. Congratulations go to 1st Bn RGR for retaining their title, a full list of all prize winners is detailed below.  A great deal of thanks must go to Windlesham Golf course for hosting the event in such style. 

PRIZE WINNERS

Nearest to Pin                   –     Col J Robinson, HQBG

                                                 –     CSgt Bishwahang Rai, 2 RGR 

Longest Drive                   –     Sgt Nilkumar Thapa, QGE

                                                 –     CSgt Naresh Gurung, 1 RGR 

Most Pars                            –     Capt Gyanbahadur Dhenga, Gurkha Coy Catterick

Most Birdies                      –     CSgt Bishwahang Rai, 2RGR 

Best Dress (Team)          –     Band of Brigade of Gurkhas 

Division A, Winner         –     SSgt Nilkumar Thapa, QOGLR

Division A, Runner Up  –     Capt Gyanbahadur Dhenga, Gurkha Coy Catterick 

Division B, Winner         –     Sgt Furtenji Sherpa, QGE

Division B, Runner Up  –     Capt Muktiprasad Gurung, HQBG 

Division C, Winner         –     Cpl Anil Gurung, 1RGR

Division C, Runner Up  –     LCpl Jit Thapa, QGE 

Individual Champion    –     CSgt Bishwahang Rai, 2 RGR

Individual Runner Up  –     Cpl Raju Tamang, 1 RGR 

BG Unit Champion         –     1 RGR

BG Unit Runners Up      –     2 RGR

 

 

 

Guernsey Liberation Day 2016

Guernsey is a British Crown dependency situated in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy. The population of Guernsey is 63,000 and it’s size is just 24 square miles. During World War II, the island of Guernsey became occupied by the Nazis. Before the occupation, 80% of Guernsey children were evacuated to England. The 9th May 1945 is the day that will never be forgotten in Guernsey’s history. On that day, the island was liberated following five years of occupation by the Nazis.

Since 2010, a wonderful lady from the island, Dame Mary Perkins, the owner of SpecSavers, has sponsored 10 Gurkhas from Gurkha Company Sittang (GCS) to represent the Brigade of Gurkhas to celebrate the island’s historic May Liberation Day. The people of Guernsey are very supportive, enthusiastic and always show great respect for the Gurkhas.

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On 5th May, the Gurkhas from GCS arrived in Guernsey along with Chelsea pensioners. Capt Lilaram Rai addressed the crowd and presented a small memento, the Gurkha 200 Plate, to Dame Mary Perkins. On the 7th May, the Gurkhas were invited to the Sporting Club were they received a £500 cheque for the Gurkha Welfare Trust. They then went to visit the St John’s Residential Home where senior citizens live, which was established since 1948 and is run by a registered charity.

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On 9th May , the Gurkhas from GCS paraded through the town of St. Peter Port led by the Boys’ Band, Guernsey Armed Forces cadets, veterans, standard bearers, Chelsea pensioners and other military representatives.  The Governor, Lt-Governor Vice Admiral Ian Corder and the Bailiff Sir Richard Collas inspected the parade.  They then marched to the town Church for the liberation service.  After having dinner at hotel, the Gurkhas watched a spectacular fireworks display from the Guernsey Yacht Club in the evening.

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Many thanks to Dame Mary Perkins and the people of Guernsey for allowing Gurkhas from GCS the privilege of attending the Guernsey Liberation Day and may this tradition long continue.

More coverage in the Guernsey press can be found here.

Credit goes to Rfn Mandeep Rai, 1 Platoon, Gurkha Coy Sittang, for his excellent contribution to the article.

Jai Gurkha Coy Sittang.

 

 

 

Martial Arts 12

During their 9-months training at Gurkha Company Catterick, all trainee Gurkhas uniquely receive training in Taekwondo and Khukuri Fighting.

Earlier this month, the recruits at Gurkha Company Catterick also received Jujutsu training to add yet another skill to their Martial Art capabilities. They were taught Jujutsu by an experienced Martial Arts expert, Padre Withers of 2nd Infantry Training Battalion.

2ITB Padre, instructing Jujutsu

Padre Withers instructing Jujutsu

Officer Commanding Gurkha Company Catterick, Major Ed Withey RGR, described the training they receive:

“Gurkha Company trainees learn Close Quarter Combat (CQC) skills through a combination of Taekwondo and Kukri knife patterns. This training is delivered by qualified instructors inside the Company, before a final grading is conducted by an internationally renowned 8th Dan Taekwondo Master. After a comprehensive package of 10 sessions, trainees achieve their yellow belt in Taekwondo. However many surpass this by achieving green, red and black belt tabs.”

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“CQC is a critical part of the Gurkha Infantryman’s Course. It develops the Rifleman’s confidence at fighting in very close quarters with an adversary; a critical part of operating in a jungle environment, which many of the trainees will be deployed to on completion of their training.”

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During the 9 months, all trainee Gurkhas undergo a 39-week course consisting of:

  • Infantry Phase 1 and 2 Training
  • An English language package
  • Cultural orientation activities (including visits to key historical and institutional UK sites such as the Houses of Parliament)

As he passes out of recruit training, the now trained Gurkha can be justifiably proud of what he has achieved, but every new soldier joins his unit knowing just how hard he will have to work to live up to the outstanding reputation his forefathers have built.

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JAI Gurkha Company Catterick.

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running

The WAAT4 Challenge is a prestigious navigation event in Wales’ beautiful Brecon Beacons National Park in South Wales and it was held this year on Saturday 18 June 2016.

Two teams were made up of four and six men from those Gurkhas currently serving with the Gurkha Wing (Mandalay ) at the Infantry Battle School based in Brecon, Powys, Wales.  The 4-man team took part in a 40km race, whilst the 6-man team conducted the 30km race over the arduous Brecon Beacons.

And they're off!

Getting ready to begin….some nervous faces

The route included travelling up and over South Wales’ highest peak – Pen y Fan (886m) and running through a number of checkpoints en route.  

Racing across the Brecon Beacons

Racing across the Brecon Beacons

Both teams emerged winners securing 1st place in both the 40 and 30km races respectively.

The main aim of the event was to enable them to work as a team under pressure in an arduous environment and to raise money for a number of very worthwhile charities such as Brecon Mountain Rescue, Wales Air Ambulance, Teenage Cancer Trust, PC Rathbones Blue Light Fund and Help for Heroes.

Well done to the teams who have done extremely well to uphold the Gurkha reputation of having superb endurance ability (particularly over hills) and for raising money for some excellent causes.

 

Dear all Gurkha Brigade Association friends, please find below the link to all new and improved online version of Parbate.

This is April’s edition and it covers some great events including:

  • HRH Prince Harry’s visit to Nepal.
  • 2 RGR raising the flag in Kabul.
  • 1 RGR in Kenya on Ex ASKARI STORM.
  • An update on the great work of the Gurkha Welfare Trust helping Nepal to recover from last year’s dreadful earthquakes.

We hope you enjoy the accompanying music too!  The May/June combined edition will be available within by mid-July.

Best Wishes,

The Brigade of Gurkhas Media Team.

Click on the picture above to read the April 2016 edition of Parbate.

Click on the picture above to read the April 2016 edition of Parbate.

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Ipoh Cemetery

Each year in June the Warriors Association (WIRA) of Malaysia hold a series of events to commemorate the sacrifices made during the Malayan Emergency, especially at Ipoh.  This year the events were held from 9-11 June and veterans and British High Commission staff were joined for the first time ever by Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas, Col James Robinson.

Col James Robinson and members of 1RGR Pipes & Drums

Col James Robinson and members of 1RGR Pipes & Drums

The Malayan Emergency saw over 10,000 Gurkhas active on operations over the period 1948 to 1960.  It also saw the birth of our current corps units:  Queen’s Gurkha Signals, Gurkha Transport Regiment (now Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment) and Queen’s Gurkha Engineers. Additionally, other units were raised for the Emergency; a Gurkha Military Police Unit, a Gurkha Dog Company, and the Gurkha Parachute company.

Gurkha soldiers during Malayan Emergency

Gurkha soldiers during Malayan Emergency

Joined by the British High Commissioner, Vicki Treadell CMG MVO, and the British Defence Attaché, Col Stephen Hall and his wife, Sue, Col BG travelled to Ipoh. The Australian and New Zealand Defence Attaches were also present along with the Nepalese Ambassador to Malaysia.

British High Commissioner, Vicki Treadell CMG MVO, and the British Defence Attaché, Col Stephen Hall having laid their wreaths at Tambun Road, Ipoh

British High Commissioner, Vicki Treadell CMG MVO, and the British Defence Attaché, Col Stephen Hall having laid their wreaths at Tambun Road, Ipoh

Also joining Col BG were 4 members of the 1RGR Pipes and Drums from Brunei who played at all services and functions. A 50 piece band from the Australian Veteran’s association also travelled from across Australia, along with a number of veterans, and added significantly to the occasion.

1RGR Pipes & Drums alongside main guests at Tambun Road, Ipoh

1RGR Pipes & Drums alongside main guests at Tambun Road, Ipoh

The first morning was a formal multi-cultural service of remembrance outside the magnificent Ipoh Railway station  followed by speeches in the Ipoh City Hall. The second day started early with a memorial church service at God’s Little Acre in Batu Gajah.  This was in memory of those oil and rubber planters killed during the Emergency and was followed by a wreath laying in the cemetery.

British Defence Attaché, Col Stephen Hall and Col James Robinson at the cemetery

British Defence Attaché, Col Stephen Hall and Col James Robinson at the cemetery

The graves of 4 Gurkhas who were killed next to each other during an ambush.

The graves of 4 Gurkhas who were killed during an ambush as they fought side by side.

1RGR Piper sounds the Last Post

1RGR Piper sounds the Last Post

This was followed by a Gurkha Remembrance at Tambuan Road Camp, formerly Suvla Lines, just outside Ipoh and now occupied by the 2nd Royal Ranger Regiment.

It was here that a memorial plinth had been erected a year ago for which Gurkha Associations, including our own GBA, had made significant financial contributions.

Col James Robinson lays a wreath on behalf of the Brigade of Gurkhas at Tambun Road, Ipoh

Col James Robinson lays a wreath on behalf of the Brigade of Gurkhas at Tambun Road, Ipoh

Wreaths were laid, Last Post played, the Nepalese Ambassador to Nepal spoke and Col BG gave a Closing Address reminding the audience of the Gurkhas’ contributions and successes as well as reminding them of the history of the Brigade of Gurkhas and the importance of remembrance.

Col James Robinson reminds us of the sacrifices made

Col James Robinson reminds us of the sacrifices made

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All then adjourned to the Royal Ipoh Club for lunch.  In the evening, another ‘Troops Night’ function took place at a hotel in Ipoh and the 1RGR Pipes and Drums stole the evening.

Dinner in the Ipoh Club

Dinner in the Ipoh Club

Music in the Ipoh Club

Music in the Ipoh Club

Some other good press coverage of the event can be found here.

 

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