On 24th February 2018, The Gurkha Brigade Association (GBA) held a Briefing Day for all Regimental Association (RA) Representatives and Gurkha Community Leaders. The Briefing Days are the GBA’s “Outreach Programme” aimed at keeping both serving and retired Gurkha servicemen informed of the changes that impact on the Gurkha community.
The Brigade Secretary (Major (Retd) Mani Rai MBE stated that GBA’s intent was to promote the customs and traditions of the Brigade of Gurkhas, hard won over more than 200 years of service to the British Crown and to foster esprit de corps among its members – both serving and retired.
The active participation of the 4 Pillars that make up the Gurkha Community; The Gurkha Museum (Heritage), Gurkha Welfare Trust/Gurkha Welfare Advice Centre (Welfare in Nepal and UK), Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas (HQBG – the serving element) and the GBA (Coordination) has ensured that the commonality of purpose and a shared vision has been in the best interests of whole Brigade past and present.
Attendees at the Briefing Day commented that they thought that it was an excellent event and that the contents of the presentations were both interesting and informative. They were all looking forward to spreading the word and getting more Gurkha Community Leaders to attend so that they would be able to keep their members abreast of the latest developments.
Sapper Soman Gurung from Queen’s Gurkha Engineers recently took part in British Unequipped Single Lift Championship 2018 in Bristol on 17th February 2018.
This national level event was organised by British Drug Free Powerlifting Association where he didn’t only achieved second position in both Squat and Bench-Press, but also qualified for the European & World Powerlifting Competition.
Dear all Gurkha Brigade Association friends, please find below the link to all online version of Parbate.
This is February’s edition and it covers some events including:
The Brigade of Gurkhas Media Team.
Click on the picture above
This year we will be following the events and training of some of our latest Gurkha recruits through their own eyes and thoughts with Gurkha Company at the Infantry Training Centre, Catterick.
Week one is bought to us by Trainee Rifleman Devendra Gurung, 3 (Tobruk) Platoon – A Week of Firsts
Following the visit in 2017 of General Rajendra Chhetri, Chief of Army Staff Nepal, to the UK, a return visit has been made by Chief of the General Staff (CGS), General Sir Nick Carter KCB CBE DSO ADC Gen, accompanied by Lieutenant Colonel M Mudd and the Army Sergeant Major Warrant Officer Class One G Haughton OBE.
Upon arrival at Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport on 6th February they were welcomed by a party from the Nepalese Army including CGS Nepal, Lieutenant General Thapa, and the British Defence Attaché Kathmandu, Colonel Ian Logan.
Later that day they moved to the Headquarters of the Nepalese Army and CGS inspected a Guard of Honour before holding an office call with General Chhetri and receiving a briefing on the Nepalese Army from a team of senior staff officers.
In the evening the Nepalese Army Officers Club welcomed the party with a spectacular cultural show and dinner.
The following day saw the party fly down to Pokhara, where CGS and Lady Carter moved to the Mandir at British Gurkhas Pokhara for a traditional blessing/puja. They then received briefs on both the recently concluded recruiting cycle and the work of the Gurkha Welfare Scheme.
The afternoon gave an opportunity to meet some welfare pensioners and visit the Area Welfare Centre and Residential Home at Kaski.
Friday morning dawned, Attestation Parade Day. As Inspecting Officer, CGS oversaw the Parade and had the chance, alongside Minister for the Armed Forces, the Rt Hon Mark Lancaster TD MP, to see the 270 new recruits to the British Army swear their Oath of Allegiance to the Crown. Following the successful conclusion to the Parade a lunch was held which enabled the whole party to talk to both the new recruits and also their families.
Though this was the Minister’s first visit to Nepal, he has a long association with the Gurkhas having served with the Queen’s Gurkha Engineers as an officer in Hong Kong in the early 1980s.
On arrival the Minister travelled to Pokhara to take part in this year’s Attestation Parade where, alongside the Inspecting Officer, General Sir Nick Carter, he inspected the 270 new recruits as they began their journey as soldiers in the British Army.
Following the Parade and a delicious bhat he received a brief from the Gurkha Welfare Scheme on their work in Nepal, before traveling to Khaski to see the Residential Home and meet some of the residents. Then in the evening he was Senior Guest at a Sounding Retreat on the Parade Square in Pokhara where the Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas delighted all present with a wonderful display as the sun set over the Himalayas.
Upon his return to Kathmandu the Minister took part in a series of visits and high level political meetings. This included a meeting with the President, Mrs Bidhya Devi Bhandari at which he was able to present to her the annual Brigade of Gurkhas Report on behalf of Lieutenant General Nick Pope, the Colonel Commandant of the Brigade. The report showed the excellent performance of the Nepalese citizens employed in the Brigade of Gurkhas in 2017 as they worked to fill a broad range of capabilities across the British Army.
The Minister made visits to the Red Cross Blood Bank in Lalitpur, and the Humanitarian Staging Area at Kathmandu Airport before a working lunch focusing on Disaster Preparedness Co-operation. In the afternoon the Minister met with both the Defence Minister and Chief of Army Staff Nepal.
On his final day the Minister called on both the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition (now PM) K.M. Oli before a lunch meeting with representatives from the Regimental Associations of Nepal. In the evening he was honoured to be the Chief Guest at Nepal’s Army Day Parade, a wonderful and varied display by the Nepalese Army – which also included a performance by the Brigade of Gurkhas Band.
The Queens’s Gurkha Signals Like every year, in the chilly month of 2nd February 2018, 45 young Gurkha soldiers who arrived in Bramcote after their tough infantry training in Catterick were all ready to take their oath to serve QG Signals with their utmost commitment and loyalty.
The parade took place at Gamecock Barracks, the home of the Regiment in the presence of Brigadier N M Stokoe OBE who was the reviewing Officer.
Along with the 45 new Trainees, Officers, Soldiers, Veterans, families and friends gathered together to witness the event at 1430hrs in the Parade Square. Prior to that a Regimental lunch was held at 1230hrs in the gym.
The whole event was conducted under the instruction of Captain Shankar Gurung, who was the parade commander. The proudly presented new trainees were first inspected by the reviewing officer, and then marched off in threes to halt in front of the QG Signals flag and took an oath to serve the Regiment with uttermost pride and dedication as well as be loyal and faithful to “Her Majesty the Queen and to the Regiment”.
Whilst the recruits were taking their oaths, the Pandit recited his mantras in the background. In addition, the excellent melodious tunes of pipes and drums was also played, adding to the upbeat spirit of the event.
When the oath taking ceremony was concluded, it was time to present Long Service & Good Conduct medals to Sergeant Gopal Gurung and Corporal Sunil Gurung, followed by the Joint Commander’s Commendation to Sergeant Anand Limbu.
The other act of the parade was to formally commission the three newly commissioned officers into the Regiment; Captain Simbahadur Chochangi, Captain Indrabahdur Thapa and Captain Gyanendra Rai respectively.
Immediately after the commissioning ceremony, Brigadier Stokoe conveyed his inspirational speech and welcomed all 45 new trainees to the Regiment and congratulated all the commissioned officers and medal recipients. He then took the salute as the parade marched pass in column of route which brought the parade to the end.
Soon after this a group photograph was taken and Commander QG Signals, Lieutenant Colonel Fayers announced the trade allocation to the trainees. The trainees will now head off to the Defence School of Communications and Information Systems, Blandford, for their respective trade course where they will receive their trade training to fully craft and nurture their skills and get posted to one of the Gurkha Signals Squadrons.
Mr Atmaram Dahal (Pandit -Gurkha Company, Infantry Training Centre, Catterick) has been awarded a General Officer Commanding Army Recruiting and Training Division Commendation. The GOC ARTD, Major General T D Hyams OBE, visited Gurkha Company and presented the commendation to Mr Atmaram Dahal in person on 8th February 2018.
Mr Dahal (Panditji) was recognised for his exceptional support to new Gurkha trainees and the local wider community within Catterick Garrison. Amongst his achievements is the instigation of the Catterick Garrison Park Run in which over 200 Park Run enthusiasts take part every week.
All Gurkha Company staff and our families would like to extend our sincere thanks to Panditji for his selfless commitment and enduring support to the local community.
On Friday 9th February Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Nicholas Patrick Carter, KCB, CBE, DSO, ADC Gen, was the inspecting officer in Pokhara for the Attestation parade of the newly selected 270 Gurkhas.
The parade was a culmination of an intensive and rigorous process. All had completed regional selection and then were in the top Order of Merit for the assessments at Central Selection. This year the 270 were selected from an original application of over 8,000.
In groups of five the recruits came forward to swear their allegiance to Her Majesty The Queen. General Carter then spoke, congratulating the recruits on their success, reminding them they will become Gurkhas and will have a responsibility to maintain the special name. He stated that the Gurkhas had an important part to play in the modern Army and there service was truly valued. He said they and their families should be extremely proud of being selection to join the British Army.
The music was provided by the Band and Pipes and Drums of the Brigade of Gurkhas who are on tour in Nepal and India supporting various events including National Army Day and a Musical Tattoo in India.
Once the parade was complete everyone gathered around the chautara in the centre of the camp. Recruits were presented with khadas by their families. It would only be a few days before the recruits left Nepal to travel to the Infantry Training Centre in Catterick with Gurkha Company to start their training and careers in the British Army. The raining takes place over nine months.
Members of 1 Royal Gurkha Rifles were invited by the High Commissioner of India Mr Y K Sinha to an event in London who paid homage to the valiant soldiers and officers of 1/5 Gurkha Rifles and the 1st battalion of the Royal Fusiliers at a simple and poignant ceremony at The Church of Holy Sepulchre (Holborn) in London.
At the end of War, in an impressive parade, 1/5 Gurkha Rifles presented a silver Khukri to the 1st Battalion of The Royal Fusiliers to cement their special bond forged in battle.