Official Association of Britain’s Brigade of Gurkhas

News and updates from around the world

New Lieutenant Colonels of the Brigade of Gurkhas

Each year in February the Pink List promotions is published by the Army Personnel Centre in Glasgow.  It is the list of those selected for promotion to Lieutenant Colonel. This year we are delighted to report there were a number of Brigade successes:

Direct Entry

  • Major Greville Chaganis Royal Gurkha Rifles
  • Major Andrew Todd MBE Royal Gurkha Rifles
  • Major Hugo Stanford-Tuck Royal Gurkha Rifles
  • Major Giles Sugdon Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment
  • Major Dave Pickersgill Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment

Late Entry

tol-khamcha-04022018063028-1000x0Major Tol Khamcha Queen’s Gurkha Signals. He is only the second Late Entry Gurkha officer to reach the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in recent times, following Lieutenant Colonel Yam Rana, also Queen’s Gurkha Signals.

Click on the link for the online article on The Kathmandu Post.

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

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

  • Young Officer reaches the  South Pole
  • 1 Royal Gurkha Rifles Commanding Officer Coins
  • Op TRENTON
  • Exercise SHINY KHUKURI 17
  • Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment celebrates 60th Regimental Birthday in Kathmandu.

The Brigade of Gurkhas Media Team.

parbate-gba

Click on the picture above

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

This is November-December’s edition and it covers some events including:

  • Field of Remembrance Westminster 2017
  • Brigade of Gurkhas Colonel Commandant visits
    Singapore and Brunei
  • Op RUMAN
  • Recruit Intake 2017 Pass out Parade with the
    Minister for the Armed Forces
  • Prince Charles and Duchess of Cornwall with
    2 Royal Gurkha Rifles in Brunei

Merry Christmas,

The Brigade of Gurkhas Media Team.

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the-new-ma-nepal-embassy-visit-hqbg_001The new Military Attaché at the Embassy of Nepal London, Colonel Kumar Babu Thapa visited the Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas on 6th November 2017.

Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas, Colonel Robinson welcomed Colonel Kumar Babu Thapa and provided him with an overview of the Brigade of Gurkhas and emphasised on the need to continue to strengthen the relationship between the this headquarters and the Embassy in London.

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Nepal established diplomatic relations with the United Kingdom in 1816.  Treaty of Friendship between Great Britain and Nepal was signed in 1923 which further formalised relations between the two countries. Ever since the establishment of their diplomatic relations, friendship, mutual understanding, cordiality, cooperation and respect for each other’s national interests and aspirations have characterized relationship between the two countries.

The United Kingdom is also the first country in the world with which Nepal had established diplomatic relations. The United Kingdom is the first country in the world which established its Embassy in Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. This is the country where Nepal had established its first diplomatic mission (Legation). Nepal had established its legation in London in 1934, which was the first Nepalese diplomatic mission established at the foreign country. It was elevated to the Ambassador level in 1947 A.D.

See the Embassy website for more details.

field_remembrance_2017_045On 9th November 2017 members of the Brigade association and representatives from all the current and past regimental associations came together at the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey.
 
The event is organised by the Royal British Legion Poppy Factory as part of the annual Poppy Appeal commemorations. Each year, hundreds of volunteers help us to plant more than 120,000 tributes across six Fields of Remembrance in the UK. Members of the public can make a Remembrance tribute to be planted in the fields, in the form of a religious or secular symbol carrying a poppy and a personal message to someone who lost their life in the Service of our country.
 
The Field of Remembrance was started in 1928 by Major Howson MC, the founder of the Royal British Legion Poppy Factory. Major Howson and a few disabled ex-servicemen from the Poppy Factory grouped together around a battlefield cross and with trays of poppies, invited passers-by to plant a poppy in the vicinity of the cross. Since then, the Field has evolved to include a wide range of military interests. Ex-Servicemen and Woman, both young and old turn out for the opening ceremony to pay their respects to their colleagues.
 
field_remembrance_2017_010On this occasion our current Queen’s Gurkha Orderly Officers and General Garry Dene Johnson KCB OBE MC were presented to HRH Prince Henry or Wales (Prince Harry). General Johnson was commissioned into the 10th Princess Mary’s Own Gurkha Rifles in 1956. He served in Malaysia during the Malaysian Emergency. In 1981 he was made Commander of 11th Armoured Brigade. In 1985 he was selected to be Assistant Chief of Defence Staff. He moved on to be Commander of British Forces in Hong Kong in 1987 before being appointed Commander for Training and Arms Directors in 1989. In 1992 he became Commander-in-Chief Allied Forces Northern Europe and retired in 1994. He was Regimental Colonel of the 10th Princess Mary’s Own Gurkha Rifles from 1985 to 1994.
 
field_remembrance_2017_109After the service at the Westminster Abbey Gardens the Gurkha party moved to the statue of Field Marshal The Viscount Slim on Whitehall and a small number of wreaths were laid as a mark of respect.

 
The party moved to the Memorial to the Brigade of Gurkhas on Horse Guards Avenue, Whitehall, London. This was unveiled by Queen Elizabeth II on 3 December 1997. This was the first memorial to Gurkha soldiers in the United Kingdom, and was occasioned by transfer of their headquarters and training centre from Hong Kong to London in 1997. The sculptor was Philip Jackson, working from a statue of 1924 by Richard Reginald Goulden in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and the plinth was designed by Cecil Denny Highton. A small service took place with Last Post performed by a bugler from the Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas and a lament performed by a piper for the Royal Gurkha Rifles.
 
trailwalker-2017_022

1 Royal Gurkha Rifles, the winner of Trailwalker 2017

Trailwalker originated in Hong Kong in 1981 as a military exercise organised by the Queen’s Gurkha Signals (QGS). Developed to test the endurance of the Gurkha Signallers, the exercise required both team work and physical ability. 

The event was run over 100km of the Maclehose Trail, named after a former Governor of Hong Kong. Indeed to this day the walking man logo is still found along the Trail and is famous for being the iconic symbol of Trailwalker Worldwide. 

In 1986 Oxfam Hong Kong became involved and alongside the Gurkha Welfare Trust, grew the event into a world renowned team endurance challenge which now takes place in more than 12 countries across the world, raising millions of pounds every year for both charities.

In 1996 the Queen’s Gurkha Signals returned to the UK, and the first UK Trailwalker took place in 1998. In the UK Trailwalker covers 100km over the South Downs, starting at Queen Elizabeth Country Park and ending at Brighton Racecourse.

This year this ultimate in physical and mental endurance event took place over the weekend of 29th/30th July.trailwalker-2017_004

Superbly organised as usual by Queen’s Gurkha Signals, this year’s event began on Friday as teams arrived to register for the event and fuel up for the race with a traditional Gurkha bhat (curry) cooked by Gurkha Chefs which they were able to enjoy whilst watching a polished Pipes & Drums Display from Queen’s Gurkha Signals.

Saturday morning saw over 1560 runners in 399 teams line up on a slightly damp start line in 4 waves (between 0600 and 0900), with the first group being officially set off by Brigadier J J Cole OBE, Regimental Colonel Queen’s Gurkha Signals. 

Following this starts were made by Colonel J Robinson, Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas, Mr Malcolm Goldring, CEO Oxfam UK and finally Mr Al Howard, Director Gurkha Welfare Trust.

The weather deteriorated throughout the day, however huge congratulations must go to 1 RGR who competed the challenge in under 11 hours, becoming Trailwalker Winners once again.

They were followed in quick succession by teams from 30 Signal Regiment, 36 Engineer Regiment and Queen’s Gurkha Signals. In all more half of the top twenty teams to finish were Brigade of Gurkha teams.

1st – 1 Royal Gurkha Rifles: 10:51:00

2nd – 30 Signal Regiment: 11:01:00

3rd – Queen’s Gurkha Engineers (A): 11:06:00

4th – Queen’s Gurkha Signals (A): 11:25:00

5th – Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment (B): 11:47:00

6th – Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment (A): 12:26:00

8th – Gurkha Company (Catterick): 13:05:00

10th – 3 Royal School of Military Engineering (RSME): 13:21:00

11th – Gurkha Staff and Personnel Support: 13:29:00

15th – Queen’s Gurkha Engineers (Sapper): 14:14:00

16th – Gurkha Company (SITTANG): 14:17:00

17th –  Queen’s Gurkha Engineers (B): 14:19:00

hqbg-gsw-meeting_008Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas hosted the first ever management training day for Gurkha Support Workers on Wednesday 19th July 2017. 

The training day was attended by all GSWs and Community Support Development Workers from relevant regions within the UK. 

The event commenced with an opening address by Colonel Army Welfare Service, Colonel Nick Makin. The programme of the day also included a brief on the serving Brigade of Gurkhas, which was delivered by Deputy Chief of Staff, Major Surya Rai. hqbg-gsw-meeting_002

Prior to the Brigade of Gurkhas brief, the attendees were given a guided tour of Robertson House including Headquarters offices by SO2 Personnel Policy, Major Dammar Shahi. 

The training day was aimed at increasing the awareness on Gurkha cultural aspects as well as the welfare requirements specific to the Brigade of Gurkhas. 

The key outcome of the day’s event remained the development of mutual understanding between Army Welfare Service and Gurkha units. Other areas included the review of the GSW Job Description and reporting procedures.

 

 

brigade-welfare-forum-2017_001Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas sponsored and hosted a welfare forum on Monday 10th July 2017. 

The event which was organised for the first time aimed exclusively at those in charge of delivering G1 welfare and transition within the Brigade of Gurkhas units, consisted of comprehensive briefs by subject matter experts in various fields including transition, immigration, housing, personnel recovery and welfare funding.

The forum commenced with an opening address by Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas, Colonel JG Robinson and concluded with a presentation on Gurkha Welfare Advice Centre Aldershot and its outputs, and was attended by unit Gurkha Majors, Welfare Officers, Welfare staff as well as Gurkha Religious Leaders.

 

gen-chhetri-coas-nepal-army-visit-to-hqbg_003The second week in July 2017 saw an official visit to the UK by General Rajendra Chhetri, Chief of Army Staff Nepal, who took time on Wednesday 12th to visit Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas and the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

Accompanied by some of his key staff including Major General Prabhu Ram Sharma , Deputy Chief of Staff and also the Nepalese Military Attaché to the UK, Colonel Pradeep Jung KC and Britain’s Defence Attaché in Kathmandu, Colonel Ian Logan, General Chhetri arrived at HQBG and was welcomed by Colonel James Robinson, Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas, before agreeing to sit for an HQ photo.

Following this he signed the visitors’ book and then was given a brief on the Brigade and its role within the British Army by Colonel Robinson after which Major Rambahadur Pun RGR, Senior Major New College Sandhurst, gave an introduction to the Sandhurst Commissioning Course. 

After this, the party were joined by their spouses for a tour of Old College and a chance to meet the three Nepalese Army Cadets currently studying at Sandhurst whilst enjoying coffee in the Indian Army Memorial Room. 

Prior to departure the General was pleased to present Colonel Robinson with a magnificent Kukri and book on the Nepalese Army, whilst in return Colonel Robinson presented the General with a signed copy of “The Gurkhas, 200 Years of Service to the Crown”, the book written by Major General Craig Lawrence to mark the 2015 bicentenary.

After an office call with Major General Duncan Capps, Commander Regional Command, and a visit to 10 Queen’s Own Logistic Regiment where the group were treated to a traditional Gurkha food and entertainment, Major Suryakumar Rai , Deputy Chief of Staff HQBG and Captain Ganesh Tamang, Queen’s Gurkha Orderly Officer, then accompanied the party to Windsor Castle where Colonel Duncan Dewar, the Castle Superintendent, took the party on a guided tour of the castle, introducing them to and telling some of the tales behind its history.

Outgoing Queen's Gurkha Orderley Officers presenting a memento to Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas.

Outgoing Queen’s Gurkha Orderley Officers presenting a memento to Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas.

On 13th July 2017, Colonel Brigade of Gurkhas welcomed new members of staff to the Headquarters Brigade of Gurkhas. Queen’s Gurkha Orderley Officers’ Captain Surendra Gurung and Captain Dilli Rai, Superintendent Clerk Warrant Officer Class Two Ram Thapa and Finance Officer Miss Ana Lopez.

We also said farewell to the outgoing Brigade Secretary Major (Retired) Nigel D Wylie Carrick MBE, Deputy Chief of Staff Major Surya Rai, Queen’s Gurkha Orderley Officers Captain Lalit Gurung MVO and Captain Ganesh Tamang MVO, SO3 G1/MS Captain Gemma Giles, and Superintendent Clerk Warrant Officer Class Two Priyachandra Rai. We wish them well in the future.

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