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Our site is here to represent all Airborne Sappers, we hope you find your visit to be interesting and informative. The association is a registered charity number 1009201 and has a written Constitution to ensure that everything is legal, formal and abiding.

Check out the Site News page for a snapshot of the latest updates.
Last site content update 19th February 2024.

Service Not Self
 

Book of Valhalla:

A Register for the unforseen

More information

John Rock:

John Rock - The History

Books:

Details of books related to Airborne Sappers can be found here

AGM 2024:

Updated 6th February 2024

The AGM will take place on 11th - 13th October 2024 and will be hosted by 299 Association in Hull

Added a booking proforma in Word & PDF formats. Click here to view 2024 AGM & Reunion

 

Double Hills:

Double Hills Memorial

Who's behind it and why we should never forget

Updated 4th April 2022

Op Freshman:

Working with Peter Yeates to get details of this memorial, will get content added ASAP

 

Cromwell Lock:

Cromwell Lock Memorial

In memory of the ten Sappers from 300 Tp, 131 Indep Para Sqn RE (V) who lost their lives on the River Trent on 28th September 1975

Updated: 4th April 2022

 

 

 

 

Total Membership Past & Present 1,567

Message from the Association President Dec 2023

Dear Members and friends of the Association.

The extraordinary heat waves we had in the summer months seem to have been forgotten, as I look across at the North Downs covered in frost. Although, walking through the lower downs, I noted how many of the fields have been converted to vineyards. I guess its progress in one way, but the loss of agriculture and rural life along with our small farms and communities, along with its associated artisan skills is slowly disappearing.

The thought of a rural life reminded me that back in July we attended 23 Parachute Regiment’s Freedom Parade and Open Day. The town of Woodbridge is located in the County of Suffolk, with Rock Barracks a short distance outside of town. With the Regiment celebrating its 20th anniversary it was an excellent turn out of Sappers for the freedom parade. The Regt were honoured to have General Sir Peter Wall receiving the salute. The civic parade and celebrations demonstrated how the town has taken the Regt into its family. The strength of the Regt was further boosted, as 70 Gurkha Parachute Squadron became part of the new Regimental Orbat, allowing the Regt to expand its airborne and parachute capability.

The open day at Rock Barracks, including civilians, gave the opportunity to view the Regiment at play, showing off some of its skills. At one stage it made me realise what a fantastic organisation we have in the Regt. A phenomenal “golf bag” of skills that allowed formed units and individuals to be deployed worldwide on operations on training exercises in Africa and beyond, yet at the same time maintaining a throughput of highly qualified and competent men. A number of us veterans were shown around the offices and spent the time chatting with troops and reviewing some of the events which were recorded in the Squadrons diary. A successful day, which was very well supported by the AEA Shop team, which not only did a great trade but was a focal point for many members to stop and have a chat. The day culminated with a fantastic parachute display from the Regt’s Freefall team finishing off with an all ranks Photograph and Regimental smoker.

I also managed to attend the annual Falkland Island Memorial Chapel service at Pangbourne. This allowed me to rekindle some old memories, what, a lovely setting and wonderful support by the Trust to recognise the fallen. This was followed by an excellent lunch along with Col Chris and Jenny Davies, with a gathering together for a Squadron Photo. As always you can’t attend every event that is occurring across the UK and you need to be selective, it is fantastic though to be able to attend events and just meet up and chat. Our Chairman Steve with his wife Melanie always make a great effort to get out and about in their travels.

My next trip, which I had been waiting many years to attend was the Double Hills ceremony. When I think back to the early 80s and the cairn stone we used to parade at and celebrate, how much it has changed, is amazing. I must add my huge thanks to Peter Yates and his team who has for years personally driven this forward and made it into what it is today, a recognition of the of the loss of life yet also a celebration of everything of what’s good about a village and a wider community coming together.
I know there are several other events that have occurred, the AGM dinner and dance, a fantastic event organised and run brilliantly by the Wales branch. What a great location and fabulous food and entertainment, who can forget the Regimental 2IC entertaining the ladies.

Finally, the small team led by Col Chris to the Falklands paying their last respects along with Paul Moore and Charly McColgan completing the final stage of the Ride of Respect after many years and miles and slowly but surely gathering and collecting the data to honour each individual. My personal thanks to the SAMA and the Ride of Respect team for their outstanding efforts over those years.

I can’t fit in all my thanks to everyone for their efforts to keep their particular branches operating successfully, but well done. As an example, our Christmas lunch was held last week with over 70 Friends, Widows and family members attending. It is that type of organising by a small handful of Men and Ladies and their commitment that has ensured that we as an association continue to meet and enjoy ourselves, long may it continue.

Until next time, I wish all of you a very Happy Christmas and New Year and hope to see you all in 2024.

Baz Bassett
President, Airborne Engineers Association

Message from the Association Chairman Dec 2023

Hi everyone and I hope this finds you all well.

As we come to the end of another very busy year it’s hard to think of where the time has gone. The years seem to fly by ever quicker the older we get!

Once again this has been a very busy year for Mel and I as we have travelled the length and Breadth of the country attending memorial events as well as trying to get to see as many of you as possible.
The highlight of the year was the excellent AGM and Gala Ball arranged by the Wales and West Branch in Great Malvern. The venue was superb and the organisation top notch. My congratulations go to John Askey and Dave Leibrick for their outstanding work.

We had the honour of attending the Scottish Branch 25th Anniversary Dinner in Edinburgh where I was proud to present the Presidents Commendation to Craig McQuade. It was a fantastic day despite the atrocious weather, and we look forward to visiting again for the AGM in 2025.

With Christmas fast approaching we were invited to the Yorkshire Branch Christmas dinner in Newcastle. We managed to combine this with a long weekend staying in a medieval Castle near Hexham and managed to visit the Roman Forts at Vindolana and Housesteads. Having trained on Otturburn in the depths of winter I can appreciate what it was like for those soldiers manning the forts and keeping out the Rampaging Hoards from the North.

The Yorkshire Branch Dinner was a lively affair with great food and entertainment, and it was good to catch up with old friends, one of whom we had not seen for over 30 years. The Raffle was probably the funniest we have ever seen! I took the opportunity to present the presidents commendation on behalf of Baz Bassett to Dave Grimbley for his outstanding work with the Yorkshire Branch.

We are now looking forward to a quiet Christmas with visits from the family and friends, no doubt there will be much eating and quaffing of Beer.

We wish you, one and all, A very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and we look forward to seeing you all in 2024.

Steve Wallis
Chairman, Airborne Engineers Association

Message from our site Administrator

We're always looking for content for our site. It doesn't have to be related to your time in the Squadron, though that's always good, it can be about anything you're up to now. I'd be happy to hear from anyone who has content we can post on our site. Please get in touch via the Contact page, either by the web form or email and I'll get back to you

Many thanks

Dave Pace

Life Vice Presidents

Bob Ferguson
Tom Ormiston
Fred Gray
Ray Coleman
Chris Chambers
Bob Prosser BEM
Dave Rutter

 

 

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Airborne Engineers Association