Page 132 - The Chapka 2016
P. 132

 East Midlands Branch (Fondouk Troop)
This is my first year as Chairman of East Midlands Branch (Fondouk Troop). Malc Scothern decided to hang up his spurs after some 20 years as either Chairman, Secretary or Treas- urer. He is continuing as Treasurer for the time being. The President and Committee would like to thank Malc for all his sterling work hitherto.
The start of 2016, including our Annual Reunion Dinner, was covered in last year’s Chapka so we will not go over old ground again. March saw the Branch hold its Annual Buffet at the Staff of Life pub in Sutton in Ashfield. There were around fifty mem- bers present and a raffle was held where the proceeds went to Branch funds. A number of the Branch ventured to Blackpool to attend the North-West Branch (Balaklava Troop) Dinner in early April. A very enjoyable weekend it was and most of us booked again for this year. The Old Gits meeting was held at the Fellowes, Moreton and Clayton pub in Nottingham on 8th April and there were eight attendees on this occasion. We held our AGM on 20th April and I was elected Chairman (had no choice really!). Our President Lieutenant General Sir James Everard KCB CBE agreed to continue in the post for a further year and all the other officials also agreed to remain in post. Malc and I attended the RLOCA Chairmen’s Meeting on 7th May at Lon- don Scottish HQ in London. A very long day but we let the train take the strain. In June, the Branch laid on a mini-bus to take ten members to The Armed Forces Day this year held in Cleethorpes. We decided to attend to support Alf Smith and the Northern Branch. The town was packed and we were treated to a spectacular display by the Red Arrows amongst the other dis- plays. As usual Malc Scothern, in June, arranged a get together, for lunch, at the Beachcomber Pub at Ingoldmells. In attend- ance were Eddie ‘Big Nick’ Nicholls and his friend Gay both from Carnoustie, Les Coleman and Marlene Feltham, Alf and Jeanette Smith, Harry Rack, Ernie Shirley, John Gration, Mark Julian, Malc and Betty Scothern. A good afternoon was had by all. The Committee had its Annual Dinner at the end of October at the Badger Box in Annesley and was attended by ten mem-
Band Members at Dinner 2017
bers. A special thank you goes to a member of the Branch (who wishes to remain anonymous) for their very generous donation. The Branch was very well represented at the Remembrance Day Parade at Forest Town (Near Mansfield), with Mark Wells car- rying the Branch Standard.Our Annual Reunion Dinner took place on Saturday 28th January at the Double Tree by Hilton Nottingham – Gateway Hotel. There were 151 sitting down for the dinner, including 14 serving with the Regiment. We were entertained by a saxophone quartet from the Notts Band RE sta- tioned at Chetwynd Barracks in Nottingham. I sent a message, from all those members present, of loyal greetings to our Colonel in Chief, Her Majesty The Queen. In return Her Majesty sent her best wishes to all those who were present for a memorable and successful evening. After the dinner, I gave the loyal toast to our Colonel in Chief, then the President gave a short speech and toasted the Regiment. He then introduced Major Thomas Prideaux (Regimental Second-in-Command) who brought us up to date with the activities of the Regiment over the past year, he in turn toasted the Old Comrades.
Finally, we must congratulate our President Lieutenant General Sir James Everard on his forthcoming posting as DSACEUR (Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe) on promotion to General in March.
  More than a year into the new RL OCA the Southern Branch is still functioning albeit on a limited scope. The Branch lacks the Old Comrade demographics of our midlands counterpart but we are striving to maintain a regu- lar drumbeat of social functions.
These take form of informal pub nights known as “Lancer Saturdays” so far we are on event number 4. The aim is to at- tract as many of the serving and Ex-Lancers in our local area. These have been published on social media and via the HHQ Website. We have achieved some success as you can see by the photograph of the Bovington function in November. The observant amongst you will notice the attendance contains representation from all flavours of Lancers. This proves we are a fully integrated RL OCA Branch however I would men- tion that Stirling and Judy Tatchell are getting lonely.
We look forward to helping Bob Kent one of the Branch’s founding members celebrate his 90th birthday this year. We will strive to increase our branch numbers in the local area
and keep a regular calendar of social events going. This can onlybeachievedbyparticipationsoifyouarereadingthisand live in the Dorset-Hampshire area then please get in touch.
Southern Branch

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