Some Memories from Dave (Arthur) Eyers, in no particular date order
I’m sure we all remember the snow of the winter of 1963, the heady days of 2 Div.
I remember our Green Jackets Wing Sgt taking us for a route march across the snow
covered fields, (it was what we did on sports afternoons during the big freeze).
He gave the order of “To the left at ease quick march” which was double Dutch to
us but we got moving and 62C followed him. The Sarge then marched into a snow drift
and with only his beret showing in the best military manner we split into two columns
and marched around him.
Televisions appeared in the barrack rooms around 1964, up until then there had been
a room in the Company spider block dedicated as a TV room. We got a TV in our hut
nearest the Education Centre, don’t know why but it was decided to lengthen the mains
lead and plug it into the socket by the Corporals bunk. The wire used was signals
Don 10. When it was plugged in and switched on there was a spectacular trail of sparks
that went from the mains socket along the wire to the TV and back again. ((MC - and
you were electronics apprentices, still a lot to learn then)
We were out in the sticks somewhere and had a fire going near some pine trees. Somebody
had a tin of mashed potato powder burst in their pack. They tipped the pack upside
down over the fire and Whoosh. I think they lost their eyebrows and some hair. The
flames shot up to the height of the trees as I recall. (MC - I used to really like
POM, if it was made correctly, was I the only one?)
One that wasn't just D coy I think was an outing to the Brecon Beacons. We camped
in a valley and went into the hills. The rain was bucketing and coming up as well
as down and our ponchos were no good at keeping us dry. We ate lunch from tins which
were filling up faster than we could eat. When we got back our camp was washed out
and we put on whatever dry clothes we could find and went to the Para camp to dry
out for the night. There NCOs were not pleased to have us walking around with a plimsole
on one foot and a boot on the other, PE shorts & vests. A sorry looking bunch we
must have looked.
(MC - I remember an almost identical incident with C Coy which must of been the same
6 Div adventure training camp, same scenario but we didn’t get to go to the Para
barracks, the permanent staff built a fire in an open barn where we were bivi’d on
the banks of the river at Tallybont, where they dried us out and our kit that had
been floating in our bivi’s (the river had burst its banks) and sent us back out
One more for the D coy annals. I can't remember what div but I think it was dark
outside. One evening the permanent staff CSM, can't remember which guards but we
only had two as I recall, came into our spider in the corner and wanted everyone's
foot and body powder. Most of us never used it as I recall. There was a Sergeant's
Mess dance going on in the education block gym and they wanted to spread it on the
floor so they could dance. I don't think we got the empties back but would need them
for the kit inspections. Perhaps somebody else remembers this incident.
An incident comes to mind of senior company, 9 div I think. We were at Bisely doing
a falling plate shoot, I think the whole Division was there. Towards the end of the
day the captain who I think was Wessex Regiment decided he didn't want the hassle
of taking back an almost full box of ammo. So we loaded up a magazine each. I was
first down after the run down and fired off the first shot. I missed as I was lousy
with the SLR, and that was the last time I saw a target until cease fire was ordered.
Unbelievably there was still one plate standing on our side and a single shot rang
out and down it went. I think the guilty party was the best Rifle shot but once again
I've forgotten his name. I'm sure others must remember this, particularly those in
the buts who knew nothing about it until all hell broke loose.