Page 49 - The Chapka 2016
P. 49

    The Welfare Office has been very busy over the last 12 months supporting the Regiment on its deployment to BATUS and concurrently revamping ‘Pennons’, The Regimental Welfare fa- cility. In addition to this, the PRI Shop has been transformed with a new lick of paint, shelving and an updated stock of Regi- mentally branded kit and accoutrements.
Pennons has been transformed with new windows, flooring and decoration throughout. The kitchen has been furnished with new white goods and a state of the art coffee machine. The build- ing now has independent broadband complementing an up to date entertainment package for the soldiers and families. The outside space has not gone untouched, with rattan furniture, decking, a new climbing frame, play house and BBQ area. The area has been transformed and to celebrate it, an open day was held to showcase all that is on offer. It was a great success with mini-tanks for all, a science boffin for the kids (and parents), face painting, a wood sculptor, bouncy castles, an ice-cream van and BBQ. For once, the Catterick weather was forgiving and all those who attended thoroughly enjoyed the day.
Early in the calendar the welfare team held the annual Easter egg hunt at Fox Glove Covert. As always, it began with a picnic at the visitor’s centre prior to our Regimental Easter bunny (Cor- poral Cartledge) setting out dressed from head to toe in a white bunny suit, laying a trail of Easter eggs for the children and big kids to follow. At the finish line, Padre Albert Jackson was wait- ing to hand out more chocolates to the little ones on completion of the course.
The next event in the calendar was Halloween and the children’s party was held in Pennons. First up was the inevitable ‘Trick or Treat’ and the Officers of RHQ and MT had a break from the norm as the kids visited collecting bags of Haribo and other sug- ary treats. Next it was back to Pennons for the party and pump- kin carving competition.
With the Regiment retuning back from BATUS at the end of the year, Christmas was now in full swing and the welfare team was busy getting ready for the Christmas Fair. The Corporals’ Mess was transformed into Santa’s Grotto where the children could meet Santa (not Des O’Connor) and his little elf (Sergeant Byrd). In addition to this, the remainder of the Corporals’ Mess was converted into an indoor Christmas Market with the smell
of gluwien and mince pies reminding us of days gone by in Ger- many. Outside, the Corporals’ Mess car park was transformed into a fair ground with fun rides for the kids and adults. Pennons was open for those not wanting to brave the winter weather in Catterick with coffee, cakes, bratwurst and ‘frickies’ supplied by the Bread Bowl of Richmond.
Team Welfare has worked extremely hard this year, ensuring the soldiers and families have been taken care of whilst the Regi- ment were deployed. Over the course of the year we have had to say farewell to Mr O’Connor, Sergeant Gardiner and Lance Cor- poral Thompson. Mr O’Connor was successful on an application for SSCP and accepted a job in Aldershot as an RQMS. Sergeant Gardner was accepted into the AGC, working for Army Welfare Service and, on completion of his training, made the move to Hipswell Lodge, Catterick. Lance Corporal Thompson fulfilled his dream of working in welfare and moved to Command Troop. It goes without saying that we wish all of them the best of luck with their future and careers. Captain Cassidy is the new Welfare Office and has fitted right into the job. Sergeant Byrd is now in the hot-seat as his side-kick. And, last but not least, Lance Corporal Rob Jacques is the new welfare JNCO. With all the changes over the past months, Mrs Karen Winnett remains in post where she has worked tirelessly for the last 9 years. What Karen doesn’t know isn’t worth knowing. The Welfare Team would like to wish all soldiers and families of The Royal Lancers the best for the year ahead.
Regimental Welfare Office
  Santa, Dave and the grotto

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