The Wire Article From January to February 1968  






• A number of non-signalling activities

We are indebted for our theme this month to our friends at the Gloucester ‘Citizen’ and ‘Journal’-indeed their coverage of our doings shows just how much a Regiment stationed in a military wilderness can become involved in local affairs.

Royal visit

In the middle of the month, the biennial S.S.A.F.A, Fete was held in Gloucester Guildhall. This was opened by H.R.H. the Duchess of Gloucester, who was greeted on arrival by a group of our more handsome soldiery. As usual at these affairs a great deal of work had been put in beforehand, and we are very grateful to Mrs. Williams and the ladies of the Regiment whose stall did much to swell the takings well above expectations.

Remembrance Sunday

The following Sunday was Remembrance Day: ours started with Major H. D. V. Chappell laying a wreath at the Gloucester War Memorial and, at the same time, with a representative Squadron attending a parade service in Cheltenham. In the afternoon there was a parade service at Gloucester Cathedral.

This year we inherited the cot-ordination of the parade, as well as finding two representative Squadrons. For Major P. D. Tidey, the task of Parade Marshal was not easy. Not only are civilian organisation no better than military ones at putting in returns, but he had three bands to contend with, and the age bracket of those marching ran from British Legion seventy; year-olds to teen-age Scouts and Guides. On the day all went well, of course, and we got very pleasant letters from both Mayors. _ _


“The Duke forsakes his Rolls for an A-40”

At the end of the month we reciprocated some earlier help from the City Police by helping, out at the RoSPA Golden Jubilee Exhibition. We show Signalman R. N. Welch, all dressed up and nowhere to go, demonstrating reaction tests under the eye of the Duke of Beaufort. His Grace later had a little difficulty ’with a Sim-L-Car test, and the headline helps to explain his problem: his own Rolls has an automatic gearbox.

“First win ever for Signals over Airmen”

This was the headline of a report on our ever-improving ' rugger team, and referred specifically to a match against R.A.F. Little Rissington. Having previously played in minor units leagues, we entered for the Army Cup for the first time this year. All went well until the fourth round (all right, yes, we did get a couple of byes) when “Army Cup Exit for Signals” covered just that: our match in the middle of the month against the Cheshires. They came up from Warminster (regrettably, due to foot and mouth disease, without their supporters) and beat us 9 -3 after a first-class game in very sticky conditions.

It-must be true . . .

We read it in the paper. The hint in the ‘Citizen’ was pretty broad, but one job we did not get was manning disinfectant baths across the roads in connection with the foot and mouth epidemic. Nevertheless, this has affected us, and very properly so. ‘Travel to our out-Squadrons has been restricted, and 602 Troop, who live with us, have been prevented from doing their ‘ training ’ runs to the top of Robinswood Hill (we use inverted commas as only certain people in the Troop reckon this is in fact training}. And, of course, this is another pointer to the fact that our neighbours are not other military units, but, for the most part, very hard-pressed farmers.