“S” COY. MMG2

Salvation awaits!

Salvation awaits!

C'mon Jack, up to the Bodmin Beacon with 'ee

C'mon Jack, up to the Bodmin Beacon with 'ee

1DCLI Advance Party group in Jamaica 1954

1DCLI Advance Party group in Jamaica 1954

CLICK ON THE PHOTO ABOVE (HOTLINKED) TO OPEN PICASA ALBUM: This is a feature of WordPress used for the 1st time.

1950s Kingston postcard, sent home by Dave Hutchinson

1950s Kingston postcard, sent home by Dave Hutchinson

Enthusiastic participation on the original MMG, “S” Coy & Jamaica blog has pushed the patience of most of us for loading time on our individual PCs/Macs. Probably this is attributable in part to images that clutter the file, but are/were seen as an essential feature of this blog (and all others). Here then is the successor for you all to blog away merrily with your new found (!) discipline to contain comments to the titled topic. For the newcomer (are there any left?) the hope is that this blog is offered for specific Jamaica (DCLI Caribbean posting ’54-’57) militarily related comments only. If you wish to record comments of a more general nature, then please choose from the many other blog pages that are available. All Blog Titles are hotlinked.

JACK MADRON: MMGs Minden, Jamaica & later. Picasa Album

HOTLINK BACK TO THE OLD MMG BLOG

178 Responses to “S” COY. MMG2

  1. Jack Madron says:

    One from Germany.

    Tom’s photo of Neinburg Bridge. Me and a mate were dug in just the other side of those vehicles. One morning after stand down, we saw a field full of mushrooms. Taking a poncho, we went out and filled it with mushrooms. They were cooked under the bridge and the platoon had a hearty breakfast. Except us, we were late on Breakfast Parade so didn’t get any.

    That is one reason I hated “B” Coy. Not long after I got transferred to the cream.

    ED: Mmm, Jack. Didn’t ever meet you in “A” Company!

    • Jack Madron says:

      PS.
      My mate was called Blackmoor. He was from Somerset. We met in Bodmin when training and went to “B” Coy together but I lost track of him when I went to MMGs. He also was short term regular so he must have gone to the West Indies.

  2. Sloop JB says:

    Swanny

    I told most of my stories of Germany back through the blogs. Many about the war schemes we use to carry out around different parts of Germany, it’s a wonder there weren’t more accidents or deaths. All I can add is thank God I didn’t go to war for real.

  3. Jack Madron says:

    Ed.
    Forgotten lots of things about “S” Coy and Jamaica and only half remember other things. Often pissed and broke. That’s for sure. I keep racking my memory for events but to be honest, I remember more of Germany than Jamaica.

    Maybe it’s because I preferred Germany but I did enjoy Jamaica. If I do remember anything I’ll put it on this blog. Must be something lurking somewhere in the back of my mind.

  4. Swanny says:

    ED
    Haven’t seen much write ups on this blog for a day or two. Come on Jack-Dave-Sloop, come on tell us Rifle Coy bods some of your war stories from Jamaica etc. ie route marches etc, and any funny yarns about down town Jamaica, pissed and broke etc.

  5. JT says:

    I see some tumble weed blowin down this street.

  6. Jack Madron says:

    Ed.
    My mistake. Jack Callaway and not A Coy Minden but B Coy.
    Sorry mate.

  7. Jack Madron says:

    Ed.
    Bill was a mad machine gunner. Just like Dave and me. That’s how we got in the MMGs. We joined up together and signed on together.

    Jack Calloway is another chap. Same intake as us but went to A Coy. NS man. I’ve got some more pix, Ed. Could you use them?

    ED: Sorry about the name mixup Jack, now corrected. Your choice with additional pix.

  8. Editor says:

    FRESH PHOTO UPDATE

    A 1952 (?) photo of Bill Kelloway, Jack Madron’s mate in “S” Company, Minden. Another mad machine gunner Jack?

  9. Dave H says:

    Jack, I have a photo of him it’s not too plain. If I can get my scanner going I will email you it. Oh and there was a picture of him on the pictures I had on here but they seem to have disintegrated into cyberspace.

    ED: DH, I’ve re-mounted the original MMG, S Coy Blog that included the photos you refer to. Note – View Only.

  10. Jack Madron says:

    Ed.
    Any more gen on Bill Elliot yet?I’ve been trying to put a face to the name but with no success.

    ED: Regretfully no Jack. No acknowledgement from my email.

  11. Tom Howell says:

    Ed
    Welcome back Hope you had an enjoyable and refreshing break and not overwhelmed by what you found waiting for you.
    Tom

    ED: Thanks Tom, the break was a little uneventful – high northerly winds and 40C temps – preventing most fishing and beach exploration – but the “Dark & Stormy” (rum and ginger beer) was enjoyable between books. Took a few ‘hinterland’ photos that I shall publish as a new header pix in due course. Good to be back, shall be attending to the remainder of your memoirs ‘toute suite’.

  12. Tom Howell says:

    JT
    I don’t know about him being a good dancer but he has certainly got you lot jumping about!

    ED: Guys! I have emailed Bill Elliott direct to invite him aboard, following his posted Comment onto Hugo White’s Page on my other LI blogs.

  13. JT says:

    Re Bill Elliot

    Was he a good dancer ?

  14. Dave H says:

    Oops Jack, senior moment, we are on the MMGs blog, I knew my sugars were playing up but Geeze

  15. Dave H says:

    Jack, I was just joking with you, did you read the reply to Tom’s blog on the MMGs? Did you know Bill Elliott?

  16. Dave H says:

    Well Well Tom, I have been trying to get in touch with Bill through the Friends United as he is listed on there and I left a message over a year ago, but not heard a thing from him. OK yes, he did spend his time in Belize, but before demob, came into the MMGs. He was in the next bed to me and I have some pictures, hope to see him on here in the future.

    • Jack Madron says:

      Hi Dave.
      Wasn’t being rude. Just repeating a comment from Old Grumpy’ blog. You’re right. MMGs are Gentlemen. I think that now should be Old Gentlemen. Ha ha.

  17. Tom Howell says:

    Jack
    I come on legit business! Today I met a man in Mansfield. Turns out came from ‘oop north, served in DCLI in Belize. Said he was MMG but did all his time in Belize from Nov ’54. Name was Bill (WP) Elliott, was very fulsome about Tim Hodder. Unfortunately did not have much time with him but told him about this site and as he claims to hot shot on computer we should see more of him.

    Tom

    • Jack Madron says:

      Tom.
      Thanks for the info. I can’t place Bill Elliott but the name sounds familiar. It’ll be nice if he comes on the blog, not just because he’s MMGs but DCLI. Thanks again for letting us know.

  18. Jack Madron says:

    Gerroff this blog the lot of yer.

    • Dave H says:

      Jack, thats not nice, we in the MMGs are gentlemen, you know gentle men, now don’t let the side down. MMGs forever Massa

  19. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    JT
    Can’t remember exactly what I said at that time but No Mother no Father was spoken by me to him. He completely changed as soon as he was made up, I think L/Cpl and in the Orderly Room Office, forgot his roots. But that was a long time ago now John and I did a lot more soldiering than him for lots of years afterwards, as the saying goes NO NAME NO PACKDRILL.

  20. JT says:

    Swanny

    What were the unkind words about ?

  21. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    ED
    Haven’t had much to do with Sid Pender, used to see him quite a bit. He is a retired schoolmaster and as said lost track of him in last few years. As Jack said he isn’t interested in DCLI matters. I spoke to him about it years ago but was never interested, his main interests are as Jack said is angling – period.

    His name was always in our local paper in the PZ Angling Club Section, also had a few unkindly words with him when he got promoted in Bermuda just before I came home. Strange old world because when we were younger I was great friends with him and his family, as said there’s no queerer than folk.

  22. JT says:

    Barry

    Didn’t you go the to America with him to visit his relatives ?

  23. JT says:

    Jack

    OK you arrived Bodmin from London. When did you get your demob suit and where did you get it from ? I think I had to go to somewhere like Woking.

    Its interesting that so many from the Bn lived so close together and knew each other even from school.

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      I think we were on demob leave when we went up to get our demob suits. It was somewhere near Reading, I believe. May be wrong on that. Some of my army mates were from Penzance but I didn’t know them before I joined up.

      Swanny I knew from fishing fraternity and Tony Downing and Sid Pender I went to school with.

      ED: So where is Sid Pender these days, Jack?

      • Jack Madron says:

        Ed.
        He’s still around. Does a lot of angling I believe. He doesn’t seem to be interested in chatting about army or joining LI Assn. Best left alone. I think.

        ED: Thanks Jack, pity that. I was quite friendly with him at Prospect, he was I believe Co Clerk after Denis Irons. Swanny will remember. If he’d been interested in his Ole Mates, we’d have seen him at the Re-Union I guess!

  24. JT says:

    Swanny

    Brilliant, the cat went into hiding. Did you go to the pub in the evening? Was Jack home by then?

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      I got home at the end of June. Can’t remember exact date. I do know we travelled down to Bodmin from Paddington on a Sunday. Swanny must have been later than that as he said he gave the cat some peace for 18 months. Lucky cat.

  25. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    JT
    When I got near home after 18 months, my mother remarked to the family before I entered the house – Neil’s home – because the cat scarpered and her remarks were I know he’s home. The reason being I used to tease the cat before I joined up and Mum said as I got inside the door – I told you so.

    Also while I was walking home a local mate of mine Tony Stevenson was driving his car across the road and saw me, and drove me to my house, he had just been called up in the RN and was on his way to Plymouth, first time I had seen him in two years. Small world in them days, and as Jack knows we all knew most of the locals, different today we hardly know anybody. Bloody Emmits!

  26. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    I can assure you the tanks did do a lot of damage. On one of our army schemes we were in a small village, there was a small bungalow with a beautiful garden hemmed in by a stone wall, this tank came along pushed straight through the wall ploughed up the garden then just sat there. Bloody unnecessary.

  27. JT says:

    Jack

    You didn’t get your knees brown then ?

  28. JT says:

    Jack and Swanny

    What are your memories of first day home ?
    Who got home first ?

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      My only memories of demob was the morning I was leaving the Barracks in Bodmin. There aren’t many who can say they were in front of the CO and got a severe reprimand.

      Oh yes. My father queried if I’d been to the West Indies because I didn’t have a tan. Bloody cheek. With my colouring, I wouldn’t have got a tan if I’d stopped there till now.

  29. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    That music took me right back in time, all the Singers, my god just shut your eyes and let your thoughts wander and your right in the barrack room or down one of the clubs.

    Evenings, after serving the Officers then clear everything, we used to sit on the stairs leading up to the Mess for ages watching the lightning show over the Blue Mountains, listening to the music on the radio. writing letters to send home, thinking about things we could be doing were we home. Pressing trousers, brown pape,r water, never used soap in the creases, just kept ourselves busy.

    • JT says:

      Sloop

      On balance did you have a good time in the army ?

      Was Jamaica a better posting than BAOR ?

      Were you bored most of the time. ?

      • Sloop JB says:

        JT

        Like most NS boys I didn’t want to go but having been, and done it, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I made some good friendships with a lot of people I still keep in contact with a few and I enjoy meeting with the people at Bodmin.

        We were involved in some crazy things in BAOR especially the war games but we had lots of laughs. We were in convoy making our way back to barracks when the Officer reading the map got lost, we were driving around Baden Baden for two hours before we got back on track. The cookhouse staff weren’t too pleased keeping food warm for us. At one stage we were kept out of Minden because the Black Watch had got involved with locals and ended up stabbing them, I think one died, it was a while before were accepted down town again. Thursdays after pay parade we had to do a nine mile run, John Repper always won, I used to come almost last.

        • JT says:

          I remember several stories including press reports about fighting between regiments in BAOR and between squaddies and German youths. Minden in particular appeared several times.

          Also the army grape vine produced many stories. I heard that the 8th Hussars when they arrived in BAOR from Korea deliberately did enormous damage to German villages with their tanks.

          It is something of a modern myth that todays society is more violent and “what they need is National Service” The army certainly does not want it.

  30. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    Everybody excited, and for a change no one asked (When you going back). I had loads of things to sort out, firstly my job to get back to normal, but mainly I had a wedding all arranged so I had rings to buy plus a suit to get sorted. I was home about ten days then I was in church doing the business. What lovely memories.

    • JT says:

      Sloop

      Thats so right. Whenever you went home on leave almost the first thing everyone would ask was “when are you going back” I think this went right back to WW11

  31. JT says:

    Sloop

    What were you memories of the day you arrived home ?

  32. JT says:

    Bear with me folks I include this clip as Top 10 Hits New York radio stations in 1954. Change STEP lef right lef – back to proper blog

  33. JT says:

    Waiting for the burgers. We would sit on our verandah at dusk looking at the view over a bay. Pedlar Palmer fresh from the Mess glowering and muttering about Cardie the tailor whose shop was below and always open late for gatherings of young soldiers.

    Charlie Seabourne would inevitably be ironing or blancoing things. The RE WO11 also fresh from the Mess would be dribbling a bit and not saying anything sensible

    Barry Nickels the medic and me would be drinking rum laced coffee and listening to the cicadas and Station WINS New York on the radio.

  34. JT says:

    Sloop

    An Egg Sandwich? What luxury. Well it just goes to show the difference. In Bermuda the duty truck went to town at 10pm and brought us single Sgts back cheeseburgers and fries or BLT’s

  35. Sloop JB says:

    Jack JT

    I got a suspendered 10 days Jankers, whether it was done on purpose or it was the Provo Sgt being nice because of the circumstances. All I had to do when the bugle call sounded was report to George Allsop, then all I did was bulled his boots, polished his brasses and fetch his evening fried egg sandwich. No running, pack drills, none of the normal nonsense so I think I was looked after. I must admit I did enjoy my last month being back in the Coy with the boys.

  36. Jack Madron says:

    JB.
    Did you get a suspendered sentence ?

  37. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    No, no suspenders involved thank god, that would have been one step too far, and as regards to taking things down don’t go there.

    Jack

    I have a confession to make to make. I wasn’t in the Mess at that time I was back in the Rifle Coy then. Certain things went wrong in the Mess. I was sent back to Coy. The corporal lost a stripe. the Sgt lost a stripe and Mr Rowe lost his job as Mess Officer.

    I got caught up in things that were beyond me but I had to take some of the flack, you know what it’s like. I was part of the staff and I had to share the outcome. Mr Rowe was innocent as well but still had to take his rap.

  38. Jack Madron says:

    Osiffers Mess bods out at night ?
    Well I never. What ever next.

  39. JT says:

    Sloop

    Apologies. I didn’t know you were guarding chairs “IN THE NIGHT”. No wonder you were on edge.

    I think we will try to forget your cross dressing albeit in the guise of Robin Hood for the time being. Lucky that stockings and suspender belts were not involved. (or were they ?)

    You know that in this blog that ‘whatever you say will not be taken down in writing and will not be used as evidence’

    Your secrets are safe with us.

  40. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    Bear in mind we were guarding CHAIRS overnight when most other people were in their pits asleep. I know I ate a lot of carrots, but if our coloured cousins came out over night with there eyes closed I wouldn’t have seen them. Talking of Robin Hood I dressed up as him at a tinsel and turkey weekend we spent with the Taunton Arthritic Club down in Newquay, in a Hotel just around the corner from the Sandy Lodge

    You know as well as I do you can’t believe they films, all they blokes prancing around in tights, do us a favour.

    • Editor in Brisbane says:

      Robin Sloop, truth emerges, wears tights
      To presume he wears else – breaches rights.
      ‘Tis admissions like this,
      Lets his Mates take the piss,
      He’ll regret being honest – all nights.

  41. JT says:

    Now then Sloop, steady on. You were stout hearted British soldiers protecting a Princess. We have all seen Robin Hood movies where Little John beats off the Sheriff’s men with a wooden staves and they all had swords and stuff.

    Couple of Yardies (on de ganja mon) would have been no trouble and remember Jack was on hand in the jeep with the Jamaican cop. I am sure that if it happened you would have given a good account of yourselves.

    Will you includes this in your long awaited memoirs ?

  42. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    Like I said before, we wouldn’t have stood a chance if anyone came armed with machetes.

  43. Sloop JB says:

    Jack JT

    The same pickaxe handles we had to guard the chairs I expect.

    • JT says:

      Sloop

      Well guarding chairs is just as good as riding round in a jeep with a Jamaican cop ain’t it ? You were a Chairman mate. Be proud.

      We didn’t have jeeps in Bermuda. Just Barry and his Land Rover

  44. JT says:

    Jack

    Did you have live ammo ?

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      I don’t think we were armed except possibly with pick handles. Can’t even remember if we even had those.

  45. Jack Madron says:

    Princess Margaret tour. I remember the big parade on the polo grounds. I wasn’t on the parade but patrolled the perimeter of the camp in a jeep. Patrol consisted of, myself, driver, wireless op and a Jamaican policeman. Cushy number, as I recall. Not like the 48hr guards at Gov House that was mostly done by S Coy.

    We even did the Royal Guard of Honour for Princess Alice, after Princess Margaret had left. What a sweet old lady she was. We were lined up, ready for inspection, when the heavens opened. We were absolutely soaked but she still came out in the rain to inspect us and got wet as well, in spite of the top brass telling her to wait.

  46. JT says:

    Jack

    It might have been ‘making mummies’ that got you a Compulsory Allotment stoppage.

  47. JT says:

    Jack

    ‘Course you might have had stoppages such as a Compulsory Allotment to support the mother of your child in Plymouth, or a Voluntary Allotment to help your mum. Your secret is safe with us.

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      I’ve got an alibi. North Road station was the closest I got to Plymouth before Battalion returned from Minden.

      As for Allotments, I always stay clear of hoes and spades. They mean work. It isn’t that I don’t like gardens, I could sit down and watch some one gardening, all day.

      • JT says:

        Jack

        Not unusual for a Squaddy to meet a gal at a railway station and give her one in the waiting room (nice cosy coal fire). Promise to write, give her your army address and Bingo! 10 months later the dreaded compulsory allotment for maintenance.

  48. JT says:

    Jack

    Also you were a regular soldier and got about £2.9s per week. Duty free fags and booze. I would think that your Sunday mornings were lying in your pit getting in some Egyptian PT never mind .22 shooting.

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      Egyptian PT. Isn’t that making mummies? I’m sure I never got £2-9s a week. Maybe I should have but you know what those pay clerks were like.

  49. Sloop JB says:

    Jack
    Talking of shooting, do you remember the 22 range in the roof space of B/Coy block at Minden. I use to thoroughly enjoy going up there shooting, I always fancied a .22 rifle but I never indulged.

    • Jack Madron says:

      Yes JB.
      Anybody could have a go on Sunday mornings. Only trouble was, you had to pay for the rounds. I believed it was six pence for five shots but could be wrong on that. Six pence was a lot of money for a squaddie in those days. Even in BAFFS.

      • JT says:

        Jack

        Don’t give me that poverty crap. Some of the guys from my Intake went to 3 RTR in Detmold 1953. They kept in touch and reckoned they could get a shag for a 20 pack of fags.

  50. Jack Madron says:

    Sylvia.
    There may have been a competition after I left. You were there for a couple of years after me. Was the competition you say about, near the camp? There was a range between the camp and Long Mountain. Not far from the Polo Grounds. That’s where I got my Marksman badge. I remember CSM Hallett giving me a telling off for dropping one point from a possible. Oh happy days.

    • Sylvia says:

      Jack

      I’m sure you are right, now I’ve given the matter a lot of thought, I think it was a sort of fun day for the families, I remember going at least twice. It was the shooting of the gun that I remembered first and as usual I went of ‘half cocked’

      I will now march to the other blog, as JT would say lefrightleftright halt open the door lefrightleftright halt close door. Sod it I forgot to turn the light off, I’ll leave that for someone else.

  51. Sylvia says:

    Hi gang

    It’s OK I’m not on the wrong blog, want to ask you all a question about guns. When we were in Jamaica did you guys have a shooting competion or some such. Because I remember us all going to the rifle range for the day, with other families and towards the end of the day, the wives had a go at shooting at targets, then we kids were allowed a go. The gun I used was similar to the one in JT’s video above. Although I was only little so the gun may have been smaller than that one.

    • Jack Madron says:

      Hi Sylvia.
      The only shooting competition that I remember taking place was between Coys. It was held at Harbour Head Range. Kingston. On Monday 9th May. 1955. Inter Company L.M.G. (Bren) Team Match. Winners, S Coy. S Coy team was,
      1 Lt Rowe. 2 Sgt Clark.
      1Cpl Madron. 2 Pte Thornton.
      1Pte Barker. 2 Cpl Harvey.
      1 Pte Penhalligon. 2 L/Cpl Harvey.
      Still have the certificate.

      • Sylvia says:

        Jack

        Well done you. Would you have stayed around after you guy’s had finished, or did you do 140 to the pub? This is just something thats popped into my head, I don’t think I would have dreamt up shooting a gun. We had a soldier with us, I suppose so we didn’t shoot anyone.

  52. Sloop JB says:

    JT,
    I was referring to the one in the clip you lined up for Jack.

  53. Sloop JB says:

    JT,
    I think I just saw that NAAFI girl you asked me about. Looks like she has had a make over.

    • JT says:

      Sloop

      NAAFI girls didn’t have make overs in your time. They only had mercifully moonless nights to hide their charms. I think we will stick with original image.

      Lets face it we were all usually hard up in that department.

      Oh Oh Here comes Jack flash. You might get a double in here Jack (maybe three)

  54. JT says:

    Did the last one leaving put the lights out ?

  55. JT says:

    Just for you Swanny

  56. Trooper P Dantic says:

    Ed

    As a tank crew is 4 men how did they get another 4 to help them ? Were they kind hearted light infantrymen who happened to be passing ?

  57. Jt says:

    Jack

    Luckily I never had the pleasure in digging in a tank or digging anything else for that matter. After training as a signaler and B1v Driver I was not selected tank crew. (see my memoirs).
    As a comfort loving person I mostly managed to avoid things likely to require physical effort or discomfort of any kind.
    Centurian tanks offered frequent possibilities of discomfort not least digging them in, changing tracks etc (shudder).

    • Jack Madron says:

      JT.
      Lucky you. I don’t blame you for loving your comforts. Changing tracks on a carrier was bad enough. I would have hated doing that with a tank.

  58. Jack Madron says:

    JT.
    Who helped you to dig in a tank ?
    We also dug our own MG pits. Carrier pits.
    Not even help from Assault Pioneer Platoon.
    Still, if you want it done properly. Do it yourself.

    ED: If it took 8 men to dig a hole big enough for a Centurion Tank, how many men are required to dig only 1/2 a hole?

  59. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    JT, wonderful poetry. I had the privilege to serve in the Corps of Royal Engineers TA for over twelve years and was very proud to do so. My late father in law served in WW2 as a Sapper as a Bomb Disposal Sgt right up until the Normandy Invasion. What a gentleman to look up to, also his father served in WW1 as a trench builder etc, again what a man, his duties was also as a Sgt Sapper horseman carrying supplies also to the front lines. Just imagine the conditions he endured, along with those brave heroes who fought in that horrific war and many didn’t return home.

    To see that ignorant thug urinating on that Memorial in the news this past week gone. Shoot him Mr. Mannering.

    ED: PLAY UP, PLAY UP AND PLAY THE GAME

    I’m reminded of Henry Newbolt’s Vitae Lampada. How well it would serve the aforementioned modern day thug to be reminded of long lost qualities of honourable times.

    • JT says:

      Swanny

      My paternal grandfather was Royal Engineers. He was killed in 1918.

      My other grandfather was RASC in WW1 also engaged in supplies to front line carried by mules. He was badly wounded at Ypres.

  60. Jt says:

    Do they spend a lot of time in coal stores Jack ?

  61. Jack Madron says:

    I still say they tap up trees.

  62. Jt says:

    SAPPERS

    By Rudyard Kipling

    Born 1865

    When the Waters were dried an’ the Earth did appear,
    (“It’s all one,” says the Sapper),
    The Lord He created the Engineer,
    Her Majesty’s Royal Engineer,
    With the rank and pay of a Sapper!

    Poetry kindly submitted by John Tenniswood. The entire poem now transferred to an available You Tube clip to conserve blog space.

  63. Jack Madron says:

    Is a sapper someone who taps up trees ?

  64. Jt says:

    Swanny

    Expect you thoroughly cleaned the brushes after digging.

  65. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    Jack,
    As a Pioneer in the DCLI our Boss was CRE, Commander Royal Engineers and after my DCLI service I served in The Corps of Royal Engineers for several years. As you said about digging with a paintbrush? The main word in a Sappers vocabulary was improvisation which means in Sappers terms you must be able to do most things, even digging with a paint brush.

  66. Jack Madron says:

    Machine Guns present and correct SIR.
    Except JT watching Corrie.
    Sylvia ironing her TV.
    DH playing with a muffin and Swanny trying to figure out how to dig a trench with a paintbrush.
    SIR.

  67. Sloop JB says:

    Swanny
    I think it was you guys we saw in the car park as we made our way back to Camelford. You’re right it was a great day.

  68. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    JB. It was a pleasure to meet you and your wife at the Harry Patch Memorial yesterday. We all thought it an excellent service and good day all round, meeting close mates from Somerset etc. Pity we went separate ways after the service, ie some went to Shire Hall and our party had a meal at the Borough Arms, but in all it was a good day. Was introduced to Reg Norris’s two mates from Somerset who served with him in Osnabruck 1957-59, enjoyed their company.

  69. Ed,
    The Funeral for Rex Trevor Wallis is at the Centenary Methodist Chapel Newlyn on Tuesday 13th October at 2 pm. I have contacted Michael (Nobby) Clarke and the Branch Secretary DCLI Association Frank Baxter to have the Branch Standard and hopefully have a Guard of Honour with several members in attendance, will keep you posted on the outcome.

    ED: Well Done ‘Ole Mate, thanks for that update. Under the circumstances of the DCLI still being shut down to Comments, this is the best place to advise the lads. Please tender my condolences to all the Family at the funeral.

    PS: On another note, I have now corrected the broken link in this message and replaced it with a link to your other page on “Old Mates Photo Panorama.

  70. JT says:

    Dave

    I think she is hiding from you on the Allday blog

  71. Dave H utchinson says:

    Now where the heck is Sylvia ? she must be out feeding Badgers

  72. Jack Madron says:

    Yea. Somebody has to hog the limelight.

  73. JT says:

    Quick off the mark Sloop

    Jack

    Looks like you got a rival

  74. Sloop JB says:

    JT
    If your talking pork ribs I’m up for that not too spicy tho’.

  75. JT says:

    Sloop

    Jerk(ing) Pork still sounds a somewhat dubious practice and Dave may well be ribbing you.

    Jack feel a pun coming on ? Go on then.

  76. Sloop JB says:

    Dave H
    I must admit I have never had Jerk Pork even though I’ve heard about it, all those spices would give me gip, diarrhoea with daps on comes to mind, got to be careful what I eat.

  77. Sloop JB says:

    JT

    I heard a bit about Catterick back in the 50s. My brother Norman was stationed there when he started his National Service. He ended up in Germany with the REME, sounded pretty grim then.

    Bodmin Barracks wasn’t too bad really, lots of shouting going on at times, not quite a prison as such, but very restricted. We were there the best time of year which helped. After the first three weeks we went on leave because of the Coronation.

  78. JT says:

    Sloop

    Catterick or the bit we were in looked much like the Stalag films (Great Escape etc) the huts were identical, heated (or not) by a coke stove. We even had barbed wire.

    The main garrison surrounding Camp Centre was of large brick barrack blocks housing several R Sigs Training Regiments and HQ’s plus infantry ditto.

    The Royal Armoured Corps training regiments were in hutted camps about 3 miles from the centre and adjacent to moorland (tanks for the use of).
    Don’t think the word “enjoy” comes to mind.

    From what I have seen in pictures of Bodmin depot this also seems to be a bit grim. Bit like a Victorian prison ?

  79. Sloop JB says:

    J T
    Catterick sounds like it was a wonderful place, I expect you enjoyed it at the time,stood you in good stead for when you joined the Dukes.

  80. Sloop JB says:

    Dave H
    Was that Rastifarian pork or were you on spliff, Blue Mountain pork eh, went with the Blue Mountain Coffee, did it?

    • Dave H says:

      Sloop, that was Jerk Pork, you never had Jerk Pork? Man those spices, no not Spice Girls. And JT, not a circle jerk.

  81. Jack Madron says:

    Plenty of mongoose but never saw a boar.
    A few bores in camp though.

    • Dave H says:

      JT , Jack never saw a wild Boar becuase he never went into the interior , ME take the piss JT ? Never ,

  82. JT says:

    Jack

    Is he taking the piss ?

  83. Dave H says:

    We had to go shoot our own wild boar in the hillof Jamaica

  84. JT says:

    Sloop

    Bacon out of a tin ? Bloody luxury. At Catterick we ad to go t’t pig stye, strangle our own pig then fry it.

  85. Sloop JB says:

    Dave H
    I was fortunate enough to go through my National Service without a hitch but when Iwent to Salesbury camp on TA I ended up in Tidworth Hospital with food poisoning. Had some bacon out of a tin and they reckoned thats what done for me, got better just in time to come home.

  86. Dave H says:

    It must have been a converted Singer Sewing Machine , Di you get the filling put in after the drilling or was your time up ? NEXT PLEASE

    • JT says:

      Dave

      No filling, that was it ( f…..off or words to that effect) eventually got it filled in UK.

    • Editor in Brisbane says:
      • Dave H says:

        That woman dentist i had must have had her training there , Norman , i met in Jamaica , have photo

      • JT says:

        Ed

        I saw that movie a couple of weeks ago on TV. Apparently N Wisdom is still a National hero in Rumania or Albania or something ‘ania. Poor old boy died recently in a care home.

        ED: Reports of his death to date are false I believe, although he suffers dementia.

  87. JT says:

    Dave

    In Bermuda we didn’t have a dentist but one came up from Jamaica every 6 months.

    He had a foot operated drilling machine. Drilled out a cavity for me then said I had to leave as the Brigadiers wife was waiting.

    I left Bermuda before his next visit.

  88. Dave H says:

    As a matter of interest Jack & Sloop , were you ever in the Army Hospital in the Camp , or visit the dentist while in Jamaica , I spent a few days in the hospital , had an ingrowing Toe nail removed , wow did that ever hurt later ,and had a wisdom tooth taken out by the lady dentist ,but she was no bloody lady , didnt give me enough pain killer before she started extracting , and i have a low pain threshold Geeeez

    • Jack Madron says:

      Dave.
      The answer is no to Jamaica but went for dental check in Minden (army dentist) and the stupid sod started to try and dig out a filling. I walked out.

  89. Dave H says:

    Where is Jack the Ripper this mornin ? He must have been in a Circle last nite and is worn out

  90. Sloop JB says:

    Jack
    I dont know if he got caught twice, seems like you and I moved in the same circle, thats the second story we both knew about.
    JT
    They could well have been Drawers Cellular, story was they were, but I’m not 100% sure of that.
    Dave H
    Thanks for the tip, I’ll try and remember it at all times.

  91. JT says:

    Cellular

  92. Dave H says:

    Sloop , just like the Master Card motto , never leave home without it ,

  93. Sloop JB says:

    Jack
    Tich Horder got himself in the same situation one night. He went down town for a drink, met up with a local girl got himself worked over, she took everything but his underpants, he had some explaining to do when he got back to guardroom.

  94. Jack Madron says:

    A story told to me not so long ago by Gwen Passmore. She and Jan were coming back one night from the Crossroads when a voice called out of the darkness, Sir, Sir. When Jan went to investigate, he found a well known soldier inside a gateway with nothing on. Completely starkers. It seems this soldier had answered an Hey Mac call but there was more than one and they made off with all his clothes. Jan had to go to the guardroom and send a truck and blanket to rescue aforesaid squaddie. How embarrassing.

  95. Sloop JB says:

    Dave H
    My older brother had a word with me in that direction, he was in Navy so he knew a few things. He said the only Clap you want to know about is clapping your hands.

  96. Sloop JB says:

    JT
    On army pay I couldn’t afford a tanner then ,being on pension I certainly couldn’t afford them now.

  97. JT says:

    Sloop

    Reckon those gals would charge more than a tanner nowadays.

  98. Sloop JB says:

    JT
    Excuse me for a while I’m going for a cold shower

  99. JT says:

    Take you back Sloop ?

  100. JT says:

    Sylvia

    More like these (in their dreams) twas a long time ago.

  101. Sylvia says:

    Sorry to butt in guys, but didn’t know if this is one of ‘ladies’ you are refering to

  102. Jack Madron says:

    Dave.
    If you went down the road from camp to town, instead of turning right, you turned left. About quarter of a mile, on your left hand side was the China Doll. Do you remember the Atlantic Beer Garden ?

    • Dave H says:

      Jack i didnt visit the Bars when i was off duty , but Uncles Inn at the Cross Roads , did have a beer Garden and chinese food to boot , I was a good lad in those Days and i didnt even get to be stick orderly ,

      • Jack Madron says:

        Never mind Dave.
        I’ll put you down for guard duty next week and see if we can fix it for you.
        You can get a few tips from Swanny.

  103. Sloop JB says:

    It was China Doll not (Chinese) memory is worse than I thought. I heard Slim singing it at the Paradise Club, also Pattie Page singing Changing Partners. One night someone said there’s a new tune on Juke Box we were all eager to hear it, turned out to be Bing Crosby singing When I Grow To Old to Dream, didn’t we have a good laugh at that.

    The only Psss I ever heard was on the way back from the Carib one night, she offered to take me in hand (wink wink nudge nudge) the only thing I thought was how did she know my name, of course I politely refused the offer, only sixpence as well, cheap at half the price

    • Jack Madron says:

      JB.
      The words we used to hear was, “Hey Mac, you wanna ****? From out of the darkness.

    • Dave H says:

      Sloop , you might ave got more that you bargined for , with that 6 pence, Clap Clap Clap

  104. Dave H utchinson says:

    Dont remember the China Doll , but there again there were so many houses of ill repute ,,Psst Johnny you gone buy me a drink ?

  105. Sloop JB says:

    Dave H,
    Only thing good about Town Patrol was you went into all the places that was out of bounds, namely the Chinese Doll.

    • Jack Madron says:

      JB.
      Do you mean the China Doll ? If you do, that’s were I first heard Slim Whitman, on the jukebox singing China Doll. Been a fan ever since.

    • JT says:

      Well Jack caught Yankee sailors on his town patrol and turned them in to their Shore Patrol.

      You were a hard man in those days Jack.

  106. Sloop JB says:

    JT,
    Thanks for that short prayer, what an RSM he would have made. I would have signed up for life.

  107. JT says:

    Looks like a word from the Padre was in order

  108. Sloop JB says:

    Tom,
    Thank you for putting the photos on blog, can’t remember much of it. When Hurricane Hazel was advancing we tied everything down to eliminate to much damage, but thankfully it missed us by a couple of miles. My mate George Crossman went with Support Company to help clean up the devastation over where ever, I always thought it was Belize.

    • Tom Howell says:

      Sloop
      Glad to be of service. Hazel was Haiti, Janet was Belize, in fact we had at least one a year but not always so severe as ’55

    • Jack Madron says:

      JB.
      From memory. Hurricane Hazel was Oct 54. Hurricane Hilda was Oct 55. Hilda also caused damage on Haiti. I was a civvy by then but remember Hilda was on the news over here and I teased my mother about it ’cause her name was Hilda.

  109. Dave H says:

    Jack , in that picture , you look like a used car salesman selling Machine Guns ,

    • Jack Madron says:

      Hi Dave.
      How right you are.
      Your postcard of Kingston is very nice but doesn’t bring back any memories though.

      • Dave H says:

        Jack you mean to tell me that you were never down Town , even on Town Patroll, I was down there quite often with the patroll , always remember that Bank on the corner , and i have a bad memory

  110. Tom Howell says:

    Jack
    thanks for that. I am sure you are right , but at some point Mason had his foot rot!
    I believe Major Gason retired soon after 1957 and retired to the Bahamas.
    Tom

    • Jack Madron says:

      Hi again Tom.
      Forgot to say that not everything in One and All was correct.
      It states that Anti Tanks went to Haiti on hurricane relief ( Hurricane Hazel). I was coy orderly Sgt that week and I know that most of S Coy went.

      • Tom Howell says:

        Jack
        Thank you for that. I am sure that between us we got the essentials! I was in Jamaica at the time of Hurricane Hazel. Can’t remember who went with the Navy but it was a significant group. I recall stories told when they came back about the locals greeting them on the beach with offers to assist in the rescue work but only if they were paid handsomely for doing so!

        I was in Belize for Hurricane Janet in 1955 which at the last moment turned north aand devastated Corozal and Chetumal avoiding Belize. The Americans came with aircraft to drop relief supplies and we sent work parties to help clear up in Corozal. Got photos somewhere.

  111. Jack Madron says:

    Tom.
    According to One and All mag. May 1955. Major Mason was still OC S Coy. He did leave at a later date for C Coy and was replaced by Major Gasson. I don’t remember Major Gasson.

  112. SWANNY SWANSON says:

    ED. I got it wrong! Rex Trevor Wallis went to British Guiana – Georgetown, 1955-57. Just a little insight on Trevor. I went to the same school with him at Newlyn and played most sports with him, he was a very good all rounder, football, cricket etc, and as we got older he was a very laid back man. He was an excellent Mason and builder, very unassuming, but very friendly man and a very good father to his family. It was a very sad way for Trevor in the last year of his life as all that met him would understand due to his illness. As Derek said about him at our Re-Union dinner. Sad to see him in that light as he was always as smart as a carrot 12 months prior to his illness.

    Rex we will all miss you so very much RIP Rex Trevor Wallis.

    ED: Thanks Swanny for that correction, we shall all understand.

  113. Jack Madron says:

    Farewell Trevor. Rest in Peace old mate.

  114. Editor says:

    NEW MMG BLOG

    Welcome to the new blog page. Now open to Comments. I shall gradually transfer Jack and Dave’s photos from the old page into a Picasa Album and place a link at the page header for quick reference. Just a reminder too, to follow Tom Howell’s lead, in that we need more Jamaica photo images for the record. I guess that we should also mention Belize here, although so far Tom is the only “E” Company NCO to subscribe.

    In the interests of continuity, it’ll probably help to close off any ongoing comments on the ‘old page’ and start afresh here with any new ‘uns. The ‘old page’ remains open for 48 hours, thereabouts. Geddit?

    PS: Changed my mind. Old blog NOW CLOSED EARLY. I liked JT’s last post to the old blog. Follow the prompts and links to MMGs2 (NEW) Jamaica blog.

    TREVOR (REX) WALLIS. Georgetown, British Guiana ’55-’57. RIP

    I report (via Swanny) that sadly Rex has passed on after a long illness. We remember him from our Re-Union Bloggers Dinner at The Union Hotel. Farewell Old Mate.

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