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Our site is here to represent all Airborne Sappers, we hope you find your visit to be interesting and informative. The association is a registered charity No: 1009201 and has a written Constitution to ensure that everything is legal, formal and abiding.

Service Not Self

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Updated: 15th January 2019

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John Rock - The History

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Updated: 15th November 2018

AGM 2019:

Will be held at Mercure Whately Hall Hotel, Banbury on weekend of 4th - 6th Oct 2019.

Click here for details

Updated: November 30th 2018


Double Hills:

Double Hills Memorial

Who's behind it and why we should never forget

Updated 3rd April 2018

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Update by the Association President Dec 2018

This year, as usual, seems to have had many events attended by our members and consequently has passed by more quickly than ever, at least we had a good summer, sometimes a bit too warm.

23 Parachute Engineer Regiment hosted an Open Day and Freedom Parade in July on which the sun shone and by all accounts the No2 Dress was a bit warm on the day! Unfortunately, I was not able to attend this event, but by all accounts, the events were very successful.

The usual commemoration events for the Falkland campaign, Normandy, Double Hills and Arnhem were held, again, attended by many members to respect those who died in those operations, and by the time you receive this journal the Association detachment would have taken part in the Remembrance Day Parade in London. Unfortunately, our allocation of tickets was reduced this year by the Royal British Legion but all places have been taken up and our Chairman, John Ferry has arranged priority being given to those members who have not taken part in it before.

I will be attending the 100th Anniversary commemorations of the ending of the First World War in Ypres, Belgium on the 11th November and will lay a wreath on behalf of the Association at the Menin Gate memorial there.

We had the Association's AGM and Gala Dinner held in Chatham, courtesy of the Chatham Branch and it was an excellent event all round with many old acquaintances renewed and lots of faces not having been seen for many a year. At the Gala Dinner on the Saturday evening, there was the usual raffle and two auctions, one for a painting donated by Kevin Lambeth and the other for a military watch. These together with some special items from the shop raised the sum of £1825.00 which will be forwarded onto BLESMA, the nominated charity for this year in the near future, which was a splendid effort and many thanks to all who contributed.

As reported elsewhere, next year the AGM and Gala Dinner will be held in Banbury, courtesy of the Aldershot Branch and I hope that many of you will be able to attend.

With winter now virtually upon us and the festive season approaching I take this opportunity of wishing all members and their families the season's greetings.This year, as usual, seems to have had many events attended by our members and consequently has passed by more quickly than ever, at least we had a good summer, sometimes a bit too warm.

John Lee  Lt Col (Ret’d )
President, Airborne Engineers Association

Update from the Association Chairman Dec 2018

Hello Association Members, we have had a busy year as an Association with most of it attending our annual calendar of memorial events', which are mentioned in detail in the minutes to our AGM. One visit of note was the invitation to the Executive Committee to the National Army Museum, London. The revamped museum, have invited various Associations throughout the past few months, to advertise the new layout and facilities available within the building. I must say I personally liked it a lot, with the usual mixture of static and interactive displays. Well worth a visit, especially as on display in one of the glass cabinets is a battle damaged Dennison Smock belonging to a Lt Timothy Hall, 1st Para Sqn RE, at the Battle of Arnhem. I noticed something about the smock straight away, such as lack of badges and wings; and the Officer went in by Glider! Rather than spoil it, make a trip and have a look for yourself.

The AGM at Brompton went very well, with a larger than usual attendance and we completed the meeting in just over an hour and a half, which is more than half the time it took when we used to do the meeting in two sessions with tea break in between! I changed the start time a few years ago to 1000hrs, to enable members to have a more casual start to their day, especially as traditionally the Friday night gathering can be a late one! The visit to the Corps Museum and the evening Ball was fantastic. Chatham Branch pulled out all the stops to make it an event to remember; well done all of the Branch Members and of course your wives and partners who also helped in a big way. I can sum it up in one word, Brilliant.

I would like to put on record, a personal thank you on behalf of the Association to John Donaldson from the Scotland Branch, in his tenacity, determination and sheer doggedness in getting recognition to the men from 300 Para Fd Sqn RE who were killed and injured at Al Milah, Radfan in 1965. John has fought for years to get his Sqn recognised with the General Service Medal 1962 with Clasp, South Arabia. John recently received a letter from the MoD that those members of the unit who were killed or wounded would now receive the medal, 53 years after the tragic event, but better late than never. John is continuing his fight to get all of the Sqn Members (who were there) recognised with this medal for General Service, and I agree fully with this, why not? Why are the Mod pen-pushers blocking this simple decision, especially as the said same pen-pushers recently opened up the qualifying period for the South Atlantic Medal 1982 to those personnel who were sent down the Falkland Islands after the war ended! Double standards.

I have decided to stand down as your National Chairman and there are a few reasons, firstly, I play in a Pipes and Drums Band based around Hampshire, and we have on average 2-3 gigs per month, normally at weekends. Secondly, as you know from past updates, I also look after the Normandy Veterans as their Parade Marshal and other duties. This year Sandra and I made two separate week long trips to Normandy, assisting the veterans at various events. Lastly, we became grandparents just over two years ago, and have found it slightly difficult in finding time to either visit or 'take our turn' babysitting etc. Basically I am finding it more difficult to give the Association my full attention and feel it is time for 'fresh blood' to take over. I intend to hand over at the forthcoming National OGM around Easter 2019. To make it fair and square, nomination's for the post need to be into me by the end of February 2019 please. That will then give me time to inform the Executive Committee, and as the OGM is a National Meeting, we will take a vote on who succeeds. The post in normally for a minimum of two years, I obviously cannot count that well, as I have done just over seven years!

Members' it has been a pleasure to serve you as the Chairman. When I was initially asked by our old friend Joe Stoddart to take on the role, I had just retired from the army, and was actively seeking employment. Lots of people said to me, `you will struggle, especially after nearly 40 years in uniform, and you don't' like civvies!' They were correct on the second statement, but not on the first, as I found employment easily in the Oil & Gas Industry albeit, not with the offshore teams. I am always amazed at the amount of monies you raise for charities, be it at the AGM or at Branch level, you are a credit to the Corps of Royal Engineers.

J. J. Ferry
Chairman, Airborne Engineers Association

Message from our site Administrator

We're always looking for content for our site. It doesn't have to be related to your time in the Squadron, though that's always good, it can be about anything you're up to now. I'd be happy to hear from anyone who has content we can post on our site. Please get in touch via the Contact page, either by the web form or email and I'll get back to you

Many thanks

Dave Pace

Life Vice Presidents

Bob Ferguson
Tom Ormiston
Fred Gray
Ray Coleman
Chris Chambers
Bob Prosser BEM
Dave Rutter

Total Membership Past and Present - 1,500



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