News From the Glosters

Parking at the late Roy Watkins funeral on Wednesday 13 March 2024

Val Watkins daughter Alison has put a message on Facebook about parking.

Ali has spoken to the Berkeley Estate Manager and we can use the Berkeley Castle Car Park and gain entrance to St Mary's Church at 1300hrs.

You drive through the main gates into Berkeley Castle Car Park, go up to the right and drive into the top car park which is tarmac with painted parking spaces.  There is a field with a wooden gate for cars and then the pedestrian gate through which you can gain entrance. If you arrive before 1300hrs you will have to wait in your cars.

There is a cafe there but it is closed at present as Berkeley Castle itself is not yet open to the public. 

Hopefully this is all clear. Please pass on to any others you know are attending.  There is a car park in Berkeley but it is very small.

Len is making a contribution from his Funeral Fund for the special parking permission.  Individual Contributions will be welcome.

Independent Inquiry relating to Afghanistan

Dear All,

Please see attached details re an Independent Inquiry relating to Afghanistan. Whilst this is unlikely to directly affect our veterans, I forward it to you for your (and their) information. As it is likely that the subject will soon feature in the news, it is important to give our veterans the facts. 

Please pass it on to those that you think will benefit from the information contained within.

Popular 365.71 KB 52
15/12/2023 15:43:29

Staff Letter
Popular 210.62 KB 52
15/12/2023 15:41:46


The 2023 Forest of Dean Branch Christmas Lunch

Forest of Dean branch Chrismas lunch. Today at the Orepool. Great turnout, good food. Old friends. Much Banter. Roll on next year when we can do it all again. Thanks to Gill Phelps, Jenny McBride and Judy for putting this together. Our guests for gracing us with their presence. Splash and Mandy, Keith Kinsey, Mel Dawes and Eddie Kenneford. Brigadier Martin Vine. Members of the Severnside Branch Association and Forest members.

Curtesy of Ken Durham

Update on Brian Wright's Funeral

Updated Service Notice: A service for Brian Wright will be held on Friday the 8th of December 2023 at 1030hrs at Torbay Cemetery & Crematorium, Hele Road, Torquay TQ2 7QG. The Regimental Association will be giving his family full support for a military funeral with a regimental Drape, Wreath, Hat and belt, Pall Bearers, Standard Bearers and Bugler. Len Keeling will be bringing a 19-seater mini bus from Gloucester, (front entrance SOGM on Commercial Road at 0600hrs (TBC)) He is happy to fill the remaining seats on a first-come first-served basis. With possible pick-up on-route at Gordano Services Junction 19 of the M5. Anyone wishing to book a seat is to contact Len directly at 07414945062. Dress Regimental Ties. Brian's family cordially invites any Gloster friends and family to attend the service and the wake afterwards, which will be at the Crown and Sceptre, 2 Petitor Road, Torquay TQ1 4QA. There is only a small car park at the back of the pub, but there is a large bus/car-friendly car park at the Babbacombe model village; and 2 other car parks with good capacity next to Bygones and behind the Driftwood Café. There is also free street parking in various areas, with the closest being marked on the undermentioned map. All locations marked are less than 2-8 minutes amble from the pub. For information, Fore Street is pedestrianised.

Poppy Trains

Somerset Poppy Train 

Several train stations in Somerset will welcome the arrival of a 'Poppy Train' to transport wreaths to London for remembrance weekend.  Six trains will work to collect over 200 wreaths from GWR stations ahead of the London service on Friday, November 10.  The Great Western Railway service will mark 70 years since the end of the Korean War, remembering particularly personnel of the Gloucestershire Regiment and the Royal Fusiliers, who were involved in some of the heaviest fighting.  Taunton Railway Station will be the first of the Somerset stops for the Poppy Train, which is expected to arrive in the town at 7:24 a.m. on Friday, November 10. 

The train will then travel north through Sedgemoor and into North Somerset before diverting towards London Paddington Station.  It will make stops to collect wreaths at the following Somerset stations:

  • Bridgwater - 7:35 am
  • Highbridge & Burnham - 7:42 am
  • Weston-Super-Mare - 7:55 am
  • Weston Milton - 7:59 am
  • Worle - 8:03 am
  • Yatton - 8:09 am
  • Nailsea & Backwell 8:15 am

Planned engineering work preventing trains from running between Penzance and Plymouth, will be mitigated by support from a Royal Navy helicopter, and a bus to collect wreaths from stations through the region and carry them to Plymouth.  Danny Greeno, CEO of The Veterans Charity, said:  “We are very proud to have wonderful support from GWR for this Remembrance initiative which is now in its fourth year.  "Poppies To Paddington will once again be hugely poignant, paying respects to the fallen.  "Thanks to great support from the military and railway communities, wreaths are still able to complete their journey from across the South-West to Paddington to form the backdrop to the annual Remembrance service on Platform 1.  “Bringing communities, service personnel and Veterans together to remember in this special way is so important to ensure the sacrifices of the fallen are never forgotten.

The RGBW Association County Chairman for Somerset will be at Highbridge Train Station to present a Gloster Poppy Wreath to commemorate the return of our Imjin heroes from the Chinese prison camps 70 years ago.  It would be greatly appreciated if any other Association members could be in attendance at any of the stations listed at the stated time to meet/greet the train,  “By our deeds we are known”

Yours aye

Martin Talling

County Chairman

memories of 13 Platoon, D Coy 1965

The following has been received:

Good Morning Gentleman,
Following your latest communication , I was curious to know how many old and bold are still with us from 13 platoon D Coy, which was my platoon after being commissioned from Mons OCS in 1965. Paul Arengo Jones was the senior sub in D company, some other bloke commanded 15 platoon I think, and Bobby Martin was the OC. George Thomas was the CSM and the Bn was commanded by HENRY RADICE !!!! Adjt was David Godfrey and his asst was Tim Cooper. Jeremy Mermagen was sigs Officer and Mike Smith- Rewes was the mortar comd. Swaziland was the posting.

Cpl Panga Price will live with me for ever as will Cpl Nobby Clark !!!!!! and Len Keeling (Then pte Keeling) I know you won't forget me Len!! . How I wish memories did not fade.

Best wishes to all old Glosters

Peter McNaught

Gloster Regimental Memorial Update


We are pleased to announce that we are now an accredited Charity!

We are presently waiting for

HMRC to approve this formally so that we can then push forward on reclaiming Gift Aid. This entitles us to use the Gift Aid scheme.

Gift Aid is a scheme run by the government that enables charities to increase the value of donations made by reclaiming basic rate tax that has been paid on the gift. At the moment, we can claim 25p per £1 donated, so on a gift of £100, we will actually receive an extra £25, at no cost to the donor which we can use to help towards the final balance.

RE: Les Allen’s Funeral & Wake

I would like to add my thanks to all who attended, despite the Clergy, it was an outstanding day with amazing feedback and thank yous from family & friends.
The undertakers were particularly impressed with our professionalism and conduct.
Attached is a video link to the service which I did not know was running.
Well done everyone, “By our deeds we are known” was never more demonstrated!

Yours aye
Martin Vine

PS: Hope everyone got home OK, I had to stop halfway for a power nap 😊

Help Wanted – Regimental History/WW2 Buffs/Previous Contacts With the Dutch Polar Bear Foundation.

On D–Day 1944, the 2nd Battalion The Gloucestershire Regiment landed at Normandy as part of the 56th Independent Infantry Brigade, where it formed the right flank of the 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division on Gold Beach. It remained attached to the 50th Division until 10 June, after which it was attached to the 7th Armoured Division until 12 June, then reverting to the 50th Division and came under command of the 59th (Staffordshire) Infantry Division in early August 1944. On 20th August the brigade was permanently attached to the 49th (West Riding) Infantry Division, known as “The Polar Bears”

Read more

Post Funeral Report - Leslie Alfred Ralph Allen, 1st Battalion The Gloucestershire Regiment, 1930 – 2023

Post Funeral Report - Leslie Alfred Ralph Allen, 1st Battalion The Gloucestershire Regiment, 1930 – 2023

Yesterday saw the funeral of Les Allen take place at Romsey Abbey, Hampshire and later a celebration of his life at Totten. The regiment was well represented with the last commanding officer giving a regimental tribute, both County Chairman's with four standard bearers in attendance and a total of eight standards on parade. The Korean military attaché, Lt Col Yang was also present with his family. It was also nice to see many other non-Gloster veterans on parade. There is a video link attached for the service and a photo taken at the wake after a well-earned beer.
Feedback from the family was outstanding and made all the hard work very worthwhile, the association really does live up to "by our deeds we are known"

Update on HM Forces Veterans’ Cards

Update on HM Forces Veterans’ Cards

We receive quite a lot of enquiries about Veterans’ Cards and are aware that our members are keen to hear about advancements in this area.
The latest news is that work is underway to develop the digital verification system required to begin the second phase of the card rollout (to those who left the Armed Forces before December 2018).
The Office for Veterans Affairs (OVA) has led this work through the prototype stage, and it has now passed to the MOD for development and roll-out.
The Government will begin issuing cards by the end of this year and will be engaging with veterans over the coming months to participate in the Beta testing phase.
For future updates please visit GOV.UK where the latest news on progress will be shared.

The Funeral of Leslie Allen,

No More Parades - Service Notice: Funeral details have now been released for Korean and Imjin veteran Leslie Allen, 1st Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment, who died on the 19th of July 2023. The Association County Chairman will be supporting the family at the service, providing the Regimental drape and wreath and the Rifles are supplying a bugler. We are still trying to supply standard bearers. The funeral will take place at Romsey Abbey, Church Lane Romsey SO51 8EP at 11 30am on Thursday 24th August. There will be a celebration of his life held afterwards at the Totton Recreation Club, 66 Rumbridge Street, Totton, Southampton, SO40 9DS.

Burma Cup 2023 - results

The match between us & Farmers boys for the Burma cup took place on Friday 23rd June 2023 , the venue was Broome manor GC 6 The Fairway , Swindon , SN3 1RG.

Burma cup match results,

Farmers boys. 6. Slashers. 4.
Steve Riddell (13). V. David Llewellyn (13) Won 3/2
Ron Cooke. (19) Halved v Tony Dixon (14)
Dave Gardiner (18) won 2/1. V. Tim Perrins (24)
John Marsh (24) V. Steve Knight (17). Won 4/3
Peter North (16). Won 2/1. V. Graham Sargent (14)
Toby North. (22). Halved. V Roy Evans ( 9)
David O’Hara (9) Won 3/2. V. Gary Hopkins (24)
Darren Drury. (21). V. Steve Bennion (16). Won. 4/2
Kevin Flay. (11). Won 4/3. V Brian Wakfer. (16)
John Ledgister (13) won. 4/3. V Dean Mitchinson. (5).


Slashers Golf Society annual meeting

This years Slashers Golf Society annual meeting is being held at Brickhampton golf club on Friday, the 4th of August, and this year we are supporting the efforts of the Gloucestershire Regiment Memorial fund,
Therefore, I am asking you all to make every effort to attend this year’s meeting we are hoping to get the numbers up, so we are asking you to invite your friends and family to attend, there will be prizes for guests the more the merrier , If you are able to invite your friends and make up a fourball, even better, they can all go out and play in a four ball together.
Hoping for your support .

View details of The Gloucestershire Regiment Memorial fund, here  The Proposed Regimental Memorial ( 

The Burma Cup

The match between us & Farmers boys for the Burma cup will take place on Friday 23rd June 2023 , the venue is Broome manor GC 6 The Fairway , Swindon , SN3 1RG.
Arrive 0845 hrs first tee 1000hrs ,
The teams must consist of ex soldiers from respective regiments with a maximum handicap of 24 ,
We are looking to field a team of eleven , we are one man short so if anyone fits the above criteria please contact me , (dress. primrose shirts with back badge )
Our team is ;
Dean James Mitchinson, Roy Evans, Tony Dixon, Steve Bennion,
Brian Wakfer, Graham Sargent, Dave Llewellyn,
Steve Knight,
Tim Perrins, Gary Hopkins ,


Len Keeling and Martin Talling would like to thank all those who have either assisted or attended the funerals of the following members recently, Steve Wright, Peter Handel, Mark Bessell, Philip Miller, Pete Long, and Richard Smith. It has been an extremely busy fortnight but each veteran received a great send-off; thanks to the cohesive support of our veterans. Well done.

Veterans ID Card

The Veterans’ Recognition Scheme has a two-phase rollout. Phase 1 is complete; with Service leavers receiving a recognition card as part of the discharge process.

Phase 2 is to extend the scheme to existing veterans so that they can more quickly, easily and securely prove they served in the UK Armed Forces so they can access the services they need.

Read more

Page 1 of 2