Page 41 - The Chapka 2016
P. 41

 Iam struggling to believe that it is January already and I am sat in my usual position behind my beloved computer! You will not be surprised if I tell you how busy 2016 was and that I expect 2017 to get even more frantic. The normal pace of life in today’s Army is now well known as we constantly move from one activ- ity to the next, each with similar importance and requiring the same, high requisite training and preparation.
HQ Squadron’s core function as always is to sustain all regimen- tal activity utilising the myriad of cap badges that form the vari- ous departments within the Squadron. In addition to the Royal Lancer element we value our Combat Service Support embeds (REME, AGC, RLC, RAMC). The only way we can achieve this function is to correctly man the Squadron as best we can. This means populating HQ Squadron with the more senior soldier. This is critical in maintaining a depth of experience that the more mature soldier is able to provide. Some are more senior than others. Some even come with the nickname of Grandad!
The turbulence in HQ Squadron is constant, with many new personalities taking post since the last edition; these range in rank from Lieutenant Colonel to Trooper (myself included). There are far too many personalities to mention and with my impending dementia I would most certainly miss someone! In light of this I will refrain from naming names. What I will say is that everyone in the Squadron now, or in the past is highly valued and the performance they deliver has been impressive. Needless to say, we welcome all the new and bid a fond farewell to those who have served, either retiring or just moving on to their next challenge.
So... what have we been doing for the last 12 months? The year started with various build up training and preparation for an im- pending deployment to BATUS where the Regiment would act as the Opposing Force (OPFOR) to the exercising battlegroups. The first elements of HQ Squadron deployed in April under the helm of Major Rathbone who had completed some exten- sive financial calculations of LOA rates! Elements remained in Catterick during the deployment delivering support to the troops who remained. This was a particularly frustrating time having to fulfil a wide range of supporting tasks to many dif- ferent agencies, often at short notice. That said, we continued to offer a sense of humour for those that took it all a little too seriously. In Canada, the Squadron performed impressively and a special mention should go to two soldiers that were awarded a 12th Armoured Infantry Brigade Commander’s Commendation for their efforts. Staff Sergeant Darko, one of our RLC special- ists, was congratulated for his outstanding work in ensuring the
unit left BATUS with an impressive reputation. He was pivotal in ensuring that the fighting troops received the best support possible to complete their missions. It was identified by BA- TUS staff that Staff Sergeant Darko exhibited best practice in running an extensive unit account. Another ‘G4 warrior’ was Corporal Lamb who also received a similar commendation. He epitomised all that should be displayed in a G4 soldier. Always willing to help and an unquestionable work ethic ensured that the fighting troops never went without.
Once the Squadron had returned from Canada it went on some well deserved leave, before returning in September to begin the build up to an extensive inspection period by many different outside agencies. All departments worked tirelessly on behalf of the Commanding Officer to ensure the name and reputation of The Royal Lancers was maintained.
HQ Squadron performed impressively in sports this year, dis- proving the myth that HQ is full of ‘armchair warriors’. We won the Inter Squadron competitions in squash, cricket and football. Overall, we placed second in the Babington Shield competition and I congratulate all Squadron members that took part, but in particular those within the winning teams.
The Squadron emphasis has now turned to completing our an- nual military tests and some low level training on Salisbury Plain, in order that we are ready for the training year with an- other deployment to BATUS in the latter half of the year. There is one impending move within the Squadron that warrants spe- cial mention. The Squadron Sergeant Major, Mr Renton is mov- ing on to pastures new in Bovington as the Training Regiment’s Regimental Sergeant Major. He has been with the Squadron for over two years and has had to deal with four different Squad- ron Leaders, a tall order in itself! He has devoted himself to the good and benefit of the Squadron and all its officers and soldiers, taking on much more than the usual Squadron Sergeant Major responsibilities. From all within HQ, I sincerely thank him and wish him the very best in his new post.
The coming year will bring with it much more Squadron train- ing and support in preparation for deployment to BATUS. ‘Busy’ is the new norm and HQ Squadron’s sights are firmly set on continuing to deliver for the fighting squadrons. I have no doubt that the officers and soldiers will rise to the task and I take this opportunity to thank all members of the Squadron past and present for their hard work. It makes me even more proud to be a Lancer!
  The Regimental Sergeant Major and Sergeant Wooff light up the Prairie
Clouds brew over one HQ Squadron

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