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Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by KenM on 22 July, 2018, 12:01:45 PM »
I fear that I bore the pants off of some of my friends when I mention the war.
But since it happened in the formative part of my life, loss of life of so many good friends etc it is not something that I wish to forget, as I'm often being told.
Nuff said.
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by harry on 22 July, 2018, 07:25:32 AM »
During The War , Shut Up  Albert!!!
Regards Harry
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by KenM on 21 July, 2018, 04:10:02 PM »
Hi Harry, after yourself & Alf have added details of your national service life, I will do the same.
After completing driver training at Blandford camp, I was posted to Malaya & lucky enough to have a 6 week cruise to sunny Singapore & then by train to a Commonwealth Unit in Ipoh. The working hours were irregular as we were supporting a Scots infantry mob, who carried out the jungle patrols. Our company also supported the AAC who flew the helicopters. We were escorted by a light armoured company, The Kings Dragoon Guards. There was a mix of Brits, Aussies, Kiwis & Gurkas. Accomodation was of timber poles construction covered in some type of vegetation, but nice & cool. Sanitation were thunder boxes amid a swarm of flies. The Ipoh camp food was good, which could not be said of detachment rations. We were a very mixed mobile unit so discipline was not to tiresome, the OC being a National Service 2nd lieut
As long as you kept your nose clean & got on with the job, some days could be very pleasant.
I do go on dont I.
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by harry on 21 July, 2018, 01:32:54 PM »
Hi Ken the stories I told were only a quick resume like the bit about Piper Robson if you look up the story of the problems in Aden you will get the drift of his involvement obviously with many others.
I did not intend to infer that he was the only brave man as he was not. Others in the Argyles said he was marching in front of everybody playing the pipes so   he couldn't hear the rifle fire from the enemy.  He was just one of Sixty blokes that made up the employment company and there were six cooks for the sixty blokes which meant you worked half day on and had a day and half  off. Just like a civvy job there was no guard room so none of bods had to stand guard  just sleep in the office to do any early morning calls. Of  the six cooks there were three carpenters one plumber an ex fairground boxer a scot from the Gorbels in Glasgow and a cook corporal who was a bit of a spiv  from Stepney.    Any on a plus side of these memories was the we won the small units catering contests two years running. We were not completely missing out on any military activities cos we still had to do the annual five mile bash carry a ma twenty yards on your back{I remember mine was a!16 stone sergeant me nine stone sopping wet}as well as proficient  test on rifle sten gun  and bren gun just in case???. I was also fortunate to have spent a seven day trip on HMS Undine on manouvers in the  Med that was quite an experience believe me!!. I could go on cos there are plenty more, as you can gather my two years National Service was quite enjoyable mind you I went in  when they were feeding em not needing em although some of the original intake from Aldershot came home with medals Kenya for  instance anyway I would think many others would have similar stories.Regards Harry.i
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by KenM on 21 July, 2018, 12:04:04 PM »
Hi Alf & Harry, strange how that trip to Wanstead sticks in our minds, must be the cold hands on the dangly bits.
I was told to report to a place in London for a chest xray on the same day.
My apprenticship was completed on 16th November & I reported to Aldershot on 4th December, Xmas was spent in an extremely cold timber built accomodation adjacent to Engineers Corner, in snow covered Blandford camp.
Harry, I am sure that your stories after leaving national service will be of interest & will certainly revive this forum.

I was told to report to somewhere in London for a chest Xray
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by harry on 21 July, 2018, 11:22:54 AM »
Hi Alf I like you and many others had our medical at the George Wanstead was also passed fit and as a carpenter it was decided that I would make a good cook so I was put in the Army Catering Corps why I do not know!!!.
I finished up after basic training at Aldershot and Blandford in Dorset was posted to Gibraltar to an employment company in Town Range Barracks just off main street.I spent 18 months there till release in 1955
In the years that followed I have been back on two occations and visited the ol barracks which had ceased to be used by the miitary and was being used to house civillian personnel  .A couple of years ago Michael Portillo did a series on railways and on one of these he did a trip from Algarciras  and crossed over to Gibraltar and did an interview with Tito Vallejo Smith the local historian and discussed Gibraltar in general to cut the story short I got in touch with Tito via the internet and found that he was actually housed in one of the small rooms in the old barracks and was using the old cookhouse for his ablutions .Since then there have been lots of changes in Gibraltar and on the site of the cookhouse they have built a house complete with swimming pool all of which can be seen on Google earth street view. Another thing I have seen since 1955 was items on tv  about the Argyle and southern highlanders and the Governor of Gibraltar piper was from this regiment who was on the strength of the company in town range and in the ensuing years have seen items on tv of him now as a pipe Major piping the flag down in Aden. And later when under the orders of "mad mitch" Colonel Mitchel piped the troops back to retake Aden whilst under fire and saw him again at the 40th reunion dinner on tv makes it a small world!!! Regards Harry.I.
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by alffox on 20 July, 2018, 09:31:55 PM »
Just thought I would add a little something to your mention of National Service. I was required to attend a medical at the recruiting place at the "George" Wanstead and was passed fit - I probably could have got out on medical grounds as I suffered from a condition in the knees called Osgoods Schlatters Disease.  Chose to keep quiet and was posted into the RAF and on January 4th 1952 caught a train up to Padgate in Lancashire and went into all the various huts for the required uniform etc.  Two weeks there and then "bullied" into the back of a lorry with a few other "erks" and on a train to Gloucester for square bashing at RAF Innsworth.  Was halfway through the 6 weeks when King George died and boy did those NCO's lay it on.  We were required to march on the occasion of the funeral into Gloucester just outside the cathedral and as far as I know all went well.   Always remember the Sergeant in charge of our group - a pig of a man Sergeant Bertrand.    Managed to scrape through and still have a couple of photographs.  Then got a dream of a posting to RAF Hendon - could even manage to cycle there from Custom House.  Wonderful days - air displays, trips on Anson aircraft all over the country, local to London - and then even tried to arrange a posting to the Isle of Dogs.  That never came off but what a great time .  Should have signed on but left at the end of my time to wander in and out of the various factory jobs that were always available along Silvertown Way.    Could carry on and on and in the terrible situation that we are in with crime etc why not some form of National Service for the criminals of today - it has been said before.  Must stop now - message probably in the wrong topic but at least something to follow up on.
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by harry on 19 July, 2018, 03:29:48 PM »
I could write a few stories about contacts made over the years since finishing National Service most in unusual circumstances but would these be of any interest on this site ??.

Regards Harry I.
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by MickG on 19 July, 2018, 12:47:44 PM »
I also subscribe to the Newham History Society on Facebook as well as a number of other East London sites that can be found there. However I have always found this board to be a bit different and there have been many knowledgeable and in-depth discussion here on various subjects which you don't normally tend to get on Facebook. One of the other problems with FaceBook is that if a group is very popular with lots of subscribers, is that new topics that go to the top of the list and then rapidly get shoved further down the list as the are replaced by newer comments. This means that topics can easily be missed.

Facebook also tends to attract comments like my aunt's, second cousin once lived down a particular road that tend to have nothing to do with the subject under discussion.

I actually think there is room for both.
Newham memories and nostalgia / Re: A Dead Horse
« Last post by KenM on 18 July, 2018, 01:39:39 PM »
jplant1, many thanks for info, I did give it a whirl & found the many photos interesting.
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