Friday, 22 February 2013

AAC and GPR 71st Anniversary Luncheon 2013

On Thursday 21st February 2013, Chalk along with the 2nd Battalion (AB) OBLI LHG were privileged to attend the 71st anniversary luncheon of the formation of the Glider Pilot Regiment at the Sergeant's Mess, Army Aviation Centre at Middle Wallop in Hampshire.

Both groups set up there displays in the Sergeant's Mess in the morning, whilst the GPR veteran's along with relatives and GRPA members attended a wreath laying at the site of the old Tilshead Camp (I think I'm right here? but please correct me if I'm wrong). When the memorial party returned to the mess we were able to greet them with a first class (hopefully) display of GPR related memorabilia alongside an excellent Airlanding display by the aforementioned OBLI LHG.

After a short break which allowed everyone to warm up after their cold morning on Salisbury Plain luncheon was served and the two groups quickly and quietly packed away their displays, took a spot of lunch themselves and then departed for a complimentary visit to the nearby Museum of Army Flying just down the road (photo's to follow).

Chalk would like to thank the AAC and GPRA for allowing them to display and be part of this exclusive day. We're already looking forward to next time.. hint, hint.

As usual with these events, I can't take photographs and talk about the display at the same time, so I've put together a selection of 'set up' photographs and Richard Fisher has forwarded me a couple that he took of the vet's and GPRA members.

Part of the Chalk display during set up. Showing a selection of GPR ephemera, an Airborne helmet, GPR flying helmet and the fibre dispatch rider helmet commonly used whilst training on the Hotspur at GTS.

More of the Chalk GPR display during set up.

The Chalk operational boards; Tonga/Mallard/Deadstick, Market and Varsity (Sicily to follow when I source a good enough operational map and photographs - watch this space).

A shot of OBLI LHG awaiting the return of the veterans and GPRA members.

Standard British Infantry small pack contents on the Chalk display.

The two groups displays alongside each other in the Sergeant's Mess.
Veteran's and GPRA members take a moment to view the displays. Photo courtesy of Richard Fisher.

Myself on the left and Josh Elson reenactor and MoAF volunteer researcher talk to Jane Barkway, one of Geoff Barkway's daughters, about her fathers exploits on D-Day.

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