On the auspicious occasion of Bijaya Dashami 2075 Bikram Sambat I send to the Brigade and our families my warm wishes for good health, a prosperous and peaceful year ahead.
I would also like to convey my wholehearted gratitude to all the listeners and a special dhayabad to BFBS Gurkha radio for inviting me to relay my Dashain message.
For the last couple of months, 1 Royal Gurkha Rifles has been training exceptionally well for their forthcoming 6 months deployment to Op TORAL 7. I was able to visit 1 Royal Gurkha Rifles (RGR) with the Colonel Commandant Brigade of Gurkhas Lieutenant General Nick Pope CBE during their training and I have full confidence that they will deliver positive outcome, make a difference, demonstrate our professional agility to adapt and succeed. Thank you for all your hard work and effort throughout this period.
Likewise Queen’s Gurkha Engineers (QGE) officers and soldiers are currently deployed to South Sudan on Operation TRENTON and I wish them warm wishes on the Brigade’s behalf. Last year QGE members returned from a successful operational deployment to Caribbean Islands where they assisted the local government with humanitarian aid and disaster relief.
Queen’s Gurkha Signals (QG SIGNALS) continue to be deployed to on many successful overseas tours. Our priority must be to deliver the high standards of operational effectiveness for which the Brigade is renowned. The Gurkha Staff and Personnel Support Company (GSPS) as ever plays a pivotal role in providing Brigade units with administrative support adding value to all activities undertaken by our units. I must not forget to mention the Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas, who have conducted countless engagements with their usual professionalism spreading our Gurkha brand worldwide.
Without doubt, our Brigade have maintained the high level of discipline, humility, professional output and character on training, military exercises and sporting events within the UK and overseas.
Last month Recruit Intake 2018 Trainee Riflemen were allocated their future capbadges. It was a proud moment for the Trainee Riflemen as well the Regiments/Battalions which was attended by the Commanding Officers and the Gurkha Majors. Those allocated to RGR will join the Battalions straight from Catterick but the rest will proceed to conduct their Phase 2 trade training respectively.
The Brigade is looking forward to recruiting Gurkha female from Intake 2020 which I believe is a great achievement for the BG as we keep our pace with rest of the army.
The Brigade continues to grow at a pace, and the recent formations of Taveleto and Babaji Company in Warminster and Catterick respectively are part of the BG growth. QOGLR have successfully completed Tranche 1 growth with Squadrons each at Hullavington and Abingdon. QOGLR further plans to grow into its full operating capability on completion of Tranche 3 in 2020. QGS will also grow in size with additional 2 Squadrons in the coming years. Brigade is expanding its current footprint and offering more capability to the Army, which means career opportunities in BG units have never been better.
The Brigade once again were successful in winning the Queens Medal and majority of the Bisley Operational Shooting trophies in 2018. It was a proud moment for the BG. This outstanding achievement was a result of our true identity, hardwork, teamwork and strong leadership. The units must keep on working hard to retain the coveted trophies and medals which also underlines our operational effectiveness.
Lastly, I remain indebted to you, the serving officers and soldiers of the Brigade, for your strength and fortitude which enables us to be who we are – the Gurkhas. I am honoured to mention our veterans and their families, either living in the UK, Nepal or any part of the world. During Dashain we must focus on our loved ones and thank them for their love, support and commitment.
Once again, to all members of our Brigade and Regimental Associations, our families and our friends wherever you might be, I send you my warmest wishes on this auspicious occasion for a happy Dashain, and a peaceful and fulfilling year ahead. And for those deployed on operations – safe return home.
Jai Brigade of Gurkhas!