Official Association of Britain’s Brigade of Gurkhas

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King Charles III Hall opened in Pokhara

1st March 2023

King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara

A new hall has been opened in Pokhara and named after King Charles III.

In 2018, it was deemed that the previous gymnasium facility at British Gurkhas Pokhara (BGP) Camp was not seismically fit for purpose and it was subsequently demolished, with the proposed concept of the replacement hall being approved in 2019.

The delivery of the new hall was initially halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but in early 2021, Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) Nepal reinvigorated the task and pushed to ensure the building design was compliant to UK building regulations, whilst meeting the seismic standard required to be considered appropriate for Nepal.

The hall was required for the following reasons:

  • Contingency. In the event of a natural disaster, the hall can be used as a focal point for emergency accommodation or for storage of essential resources.
  • Recruiting. The hall is used during the Recruit selection process for English and Maths assessments as well as being large enough to conduct some of the physical assessments inside.
  • Physical Training & Recreation. Allows, soldiers, dependants and civilians to conduct physical training and sports no matter what the weather is.
King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara
King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara
King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara

The construction works were conducted by local Nepali contractors supplemented by DIO tradesmen, using a combination of locally procured materials and around £350,000 worth of materials shipped from the UK. All under the supervision of senior DIO Nepal Military and Civilian staff.

The construction works started on the 1st of December 2021 with a projected construction programme of 14 months. Despite ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, extreme weather conditions and material supply issues due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the facility was completed on the 1st of December 2022 after 12 months, 2 months ahead of schedule. Costing £990,000 to deliver, the facility provides excellent value for money when compared to the UK where it would likely cost in excess of £2.5M to provide a facility of a similar size.

Having recently had its new title approved by His Majesty King Charles III, and on the occasion of the first Gurkha Attestation Parade of King Charles III’s reign, the Rt Hon Dr Andrew Murrison MP formally opened the King Charles III Hall.

King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara
King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara
King Charles III Hall - British Gurkhas Pokhara

It is believed that this was the first building to be named after His Majesty King Charles III.

The Project Team included the following personnel:

  • Garrison Engineer: Captain Chris Hatchard, Royal Engineers
  • Clerk of Work (Construction): Staff Sergeant Richard Bagenda
  • Clerk of Works (Mech): Warrant Officer Class Two Richard Hunt and Warrant Officer Class Two Dinesh Gurung
  • Clerk of Works (Electrical): Staff Sergeant Lax Okhrabu and Staff Sergeant Janga Thapa
  • Structural Designer: Miyamoto International Nepal

By Captain Chris Hatchard, Senior Estate Facility Manager, British Gurkhas Nepal

Find out more about the British Army Gurkhas in Nepal

British Army website

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