NEWS/EVENTS

THE JBA INDIA TOUR 2017 - DETAILS (AS AT 10 AUGUST)

 

Thanks to some very hard work by Paddy Singh and Pushpinder we can now invite members to join the 2017 India Tour . Note in particular the confirmed dates. Read on.......

 

Day 1. 28 October. The tour will take place starting from London Heathrow airport by British Airways 28th October departing 1025hrs and arriving New Delhi at 2325hrs - cost economy return is £491 as at today but note that prices increase as the date of departure gets closer. Transport to The Colonel's Retreat (CR) for supper and overnight stay arranged. 

Day 2.  29 October. Breakfast at CR then proceed on visits to: Lutyen's Old Delhi(The Walled City) built by the Moguls;The Presidential House (formerly the Viceroy's Palace); The India Gate (possible wreath laying ceremony), The Red Fort, etc.  Lunch will be at the Gymkhana Club(with possible short lecture on JB in WW1) founded in 1913 at the Coronation Grounds, Delhi. Later return to CR for dinner and overnight stay (Dinner may take place at the Officers' Mess 124 Infantry B attalion ( Sikh TA) being joined by some senior retired officers).

Day 3. 30 October. After breakfast in CR, fly to Amritsar on pre-booked flight and transfer to Bhandari Guest House (a further saving made here from previous booking elsewhare).

Day 4. 31 October.At 1000hrs visit the Golden Temple, the Sikh Holiest Temple. At 1500 proceed to Waqah Border,  which contains the only road which crosses between the India and Pakistan borders. The flag lowering ceremony is one of the most filmed military parades anywhere. At some stage we will visit the scene of the infamous massacre ordered by General Dwyer. Then to dinner there and overnight stay.

Day 5.  1 November.After breakfast in Amritsar, travel to visit the old JBA Barracks in Jullundur where a simple lunch will be taken. Then on to Chandigarh where we are guests of Capt Amarinder Singh (HH The Maharajah of Patiala), the current Chief Minister of Punjab and a great friend and supporter of the JBA. (Further details of this visit to follow but is likely to end with a dinner for Sikh military in the area as guests of HH).

Day 6. 2 November. Move to the mountains to stay at the Kasauli Officers' Club. The programme for the rest of the stay in the vicinity of the Club to follow. There will be a JBA Dinner in the evening with a military talk.

Day 7. 3 November. An early 0530hrs Reveille and then transport to nearby Dharampur to board the pre-booked train to Simla. The railway was commissioned in 1904 and starts its journey in the plains of Kalka winding its way up on a narrow guage line Simla, a distance of 99 kms to 7000 feet going through 102 tunnels. Having arrived at Simla at 1020 hrs, transfer to the Oberoi Clarkes  (OC) Hotel. Later a leisurely walk to the nearby Mall for lunch. Afternoon at leisure and then an evening stroll to the Club for drinks and dinner and overnight stay.

Day 8. 4 November. After breakfst proceed to the Vice Regal Lodge, the one time seat of Governance during the summer weather. Lunch will be taken at the Caldera, the first Golf Club designed outside the UK by Lord Curzon, Viceroy of India. Dinner that evening at the OC. There should be plenty of time to explore the Simla shops and book stores.

Day 9. 5 November. After an early breakfast, depart the OC and drive the 3 and a half hours to Chandigarh to board the train for Delhi( 3 hrs 20 mins).. Transfer to the CR for dinner.

Day 10. 6 November. Day at leisure. Evening drinks and final dinner at the Sabre Mess, Gymkhana Club.

Day 11. 7 November. Depart Delhi airport at 1105hrs Tue 7 November by BA; arrival at London Heathrow 1510hrs UK time. 

Points of note.

1. The cost of the inclusive trip, LESS the air travel UK/,India/UK and the cost of individual Visas, will be £1,190 (Attempts are being made, thanks to generous help within India, to reduce this total further - watch this space). Each is responsible for obtaining their own air tickets (but there may prove to be an opportunity for block bookings making a modest saving)and travel Visas (these can now be obtained on the internet from the India High Commission, London). Arrangements for the individual payment of this tour money will be announced shortly.

2. Rupees can only be purchased in India in exchange for sterling, appropriate credit cards or travellers' cheques.

3. If you wish to join/leave the party from elsewhere than London that can be arranged if requested.

4. Each individual is responsible for their own personal insurance from the start to the end of the tour.

5. Dinner Jackets or golf clubs  will not be required. Jackets/blazers and (JBA) ties should be brought for the occasional more formal meetings/meals but otherwise casual dress is acceptable,

6. Bring your own requirements of medications.

7. Do NOT forget your passports!

8. NB. The programme is subject to change in detail but NOT in overall plans or travel dates.

9.Finally, if you wish to have hotel room single there will be a £250 surcharge.Those prepared to share a room (and with whom, if known) should inform the President ASAP as our tour dates are in the busy season  and rooms will soon be in high demand.

IF YOU WISH TO JOIN THIS EXCITING TOUR PLEASE INFORM THE PRESIDENT WITHOUT DELAY ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) and in any case no later than 15 August. 

 

 

 

MEMBERS WHO HAVE INDICATED THEIR INTENTION TO JOIN THE TOUR ARE:

Peter Davies

Pushpindar Singh Chopra ++

Devraj Singh++ 

Bob Smethurst 

Tim Waugh

Tim Plumptre

Paddy Singh  ++

John White

Noel Sutton-Smith

Hugh Mackay*

Iain Smith*

Bob Douglas*

Jeremy Moss

Rick Holt

Ronnie McCrum 

 Grand total = 15 

 

* Indicates joining tour and leaving tour at New Delh at CR, under their own air and road travel arrangements. 

++ Indicates making own travel and accommodation arrangements.

 

JBA ANNUAL CURRY LUNCH 2017

The Annual JBA Curry Lunch took place in the Punjab Restaurant in Covent Garden on Friday 23 June. 26 members attended; their details have been circulated separately. 

The President welcomed everyone and then mantioned that a considerable number of JBA Members who could not attend had written in to wish those attending a happy and successful lunch.

The Vice President then gave an India/5 SIKH update and stated that reports had been received from the Colonel of The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment and from the Commanding Officer of the Ist Frontier Force Regiment.

5 SIKH BATTALION ROUND UP

The Commanding Officer, Col Amit Bhagi, reports that in its tenure in Pathankot the Battalion carried out two successful counter terrorist operations and dominated the Division in both professional and sports competitions.

When terrorists struck Dinanegar police station and the local Air Force station the Battalion actively contributed to the elimination of terrorists and in saving civilian lives. The CO briefed the Raksha Mantri and the Prime Minister on these operations. The Battalion earned two commendation cards snd featured positively in the print media.

Apart from excellent  Divisional sporting successes in boxing, cross country running,athletics and hockey, the Battalion has had excellent professional performances across the board including coming first in the Brigade Skill at Arms competition and the Divisional Mortar competition.

The performance of the Battalion in the training and administrative side has been equally commendable. JCOs and men of 5 SIKH are striving hard and carrying forward the the flag of its forefathers in keeping with the highest traditions of one of the most decorated battalions of the Indian Army.

DUKE OF LANCASTER'S REGIMENT

The Regiment announced the death of LCpl Scott HETHERINGTON in January while serving with 2 LANCS in Iraq.

On May 16th the Regiment was honoured by the Colonel-in-Chied unveiling the new Regimental Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum. On a later date some 150 members of the Regimental Association, who were unable to attend the original unveiling, attended a separate service and admired the splendid "Lion of England" Memorial surrounded by its three stone benches.

WW1 memorial ceremonies continued through the year including: joining the National Somme Commemoration in Manchester, where the Regiment lead the parade  featuring on the National TV programme; holding the Regimental ceremony in Blackburn; Freedom Parades took place in Barrow and Rossendale; and our Victoria Cross memorial Paving Stones were laid throuhout the Country, the event in Manchester attended by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Operationally the Regiment has been busy: Ist Battalion in Cyprus;the 2nd Battalion in Iraq as part of Operation SHADER training Iraqi security orces; and our 4th Battalion of the Reserve Army carried out a 6 month UN tour in Cyprus as part of Op TOSCA.

The Regiment anticipates changes in the coming year. Barracks are being exchanged, the parent Division is being restructured and our Regimental HQ is being restructured. Plenty to look forward to.

Nec Aspera Tennant 

 

(Similar reports from the 1 FFR  to follow shortly)

OTHER NEWS 

The President mentioned that the Canadian Chapter of the JBA had indicated that they were considering holding a matching JBA Curry Lunch attended in Canada in future years.

An excellent lunch was then enjoyed by all. Details for 2018 to follow! 

Some JBA ties were presented by the Vice President and can be purchased from the President at £10 plus overseas postage. 

 

 NEW MEMBERS 2017 

The following new Members have joined this year and the first five are now listed under the Canada Chapter; the others are listed under the UK Chapter:

 

a. Cranston, Don

Lives in Toronto, Canada. Honorary Lt Col of the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry. Has connection with JBA through being employed for six summers in the early 1980s with the Fort Henry Guard; the British 8th of Foot served at Fort Henry during the War of 1812. Is currently the Chair of the Friends of Fort York in Toronto. Fort York was attacked by the US Army in April 1813; two companies of the 8th of Foot, elements of the Canadian Militia, and First Nations allies attempted to repulse the attack. The 8th's Grenadier Company engaged the US troops in a futile bayonet charge resulting in 46 dead including Captain Neal McNeale. 

 

b. Newman, John

Lives in Toronto, Canada. Honorary Lt Col of the Canadian Rangers. Works for a Financial Holdings organisation in Toronto.  

 

c. Panday, Hari

Lives in Toronto, Canada. Honorary Lt Col 32 Service Battalion, 4th Canadian Division. Attached to the Canadian Forces College as a Founding Director. Is the first Canadian Indian born HLtCol. Is currently President and CEO of a Canadian Capital Corporation. His Father, a Doctor, lived in Lahore Cantt. and was Personal Physician to the Governor of the Punjab before Partition.

 

d. Chapman, John

From UK National Service was commissioned into REME, serving in 16 Parachute Brigade in Cyprus and Jordan. Later became a Captain in 21 SAS (Artists Rifles)TA. Spent a year as Resident Engineer constructing  a Power Plant in Ralwind inthe Punjab. Visited various places of military interest including the Kyyber Rifles Officers' Mess at Landi Kotal. Returns home in Canada in February 2017.

 

e. Dillon, Dhandev Singh

His wife's grandfather, Risalder Hardit Singh of 9th Hodson's Horse, died on 5 December !917 in the Battle of the Somme and his grave is at La Chapellete British and Indian Cemetery near Amiens, France. Dhandev served with the Central India Horse from 1964 to 1981 and then raised a new regiment-44 Armoured Regiment. tHe reired as a Brigadier in December 2017. He lives between Canada and India. 

 

f. Johnson, Andy

Lives in UK. Is a Military Historian with particular interest in the Indian Army 

 

g. Roberts, Andy

Lives in the North West of UK. Is also a Military Historian with particular interest in the Indian Army.

 

h. Paddam, (Paddy) Singh of Sheikhupura

Is an ex officer (Captain) of 16th Light Cavalry.Lives in UK near Salisbury and manages a Travel Company (www.hindoostantours.com). Is a friend of our Vice President and of Member  Hari Singh. He is a regular visitor to New Delhi.

 

i. Plumptre, Tim

Is an amateur military history researcher who lives near Salisbury. His father was an infantry officer (The Buffs) in WW2, was captured at El Alamein and, after hospital treatment, was a POW in Italy and who, on Italy's capitulation, escaped and travelling south to meet the Allies advance where he rejoined his Regiment, being subsequently decorated with the MBE (Military).

j. Aftab, Hassan

(Belated entry)

Member of staff at the Pakistan High Commission in London and a "Piffer" member of 1 FF Regiment. 

k. Inder Jit Singh

Lives in Delhi but a frequent visitor to London. Runs a well known Travel Agency and is involved with running International Polo.

l.  Sutton-Smith, Noel

A retired IT Consultant who has strong military family links with the sub Continent. 

 

 

NB

1.All members are requested to check their personal details displayed on the Membership Page for accuracy of detail and spelling. Any required amendments should be emailed direct to the President. 

2. Those names marked by * are asked to confirm their current email address to the President

2. General notices sent by eMail will be sent out on set distribution lists to country specific bcc addressees to avoid compromising individual members' privacy.  

UK-India Year of Culture

Members may or may not be aware but 2017 marks the UK-India Year of Culture, one of the events to mark the 70th anniversary of Indian independence from Britain.  This programme of cultural exchanges is organised jointly by the British Council in India and the Indian Government in the UK, with support from the UK Arts Council.  The official launch took place on 27th February at Buckingham Palace, at a reception hosted by the Queen.

Events will take place across the UK and India throughout 2017; so look out for events in your area.

  Chattri Memorial Service

This year’s annual Chattri Memorial Service took place on Sunday 11th June at the Chattri near Patcham, on the Downs north of Brighton.  

If Members ever want to visit the Memorial on any other day, you should simply park on the verge in Braypool Lane and take the walk across farmland for about a mile.  On a sunny day the views south to Brighton are spectacular.

 

THE JULLUNDUR BRIGADE-"AN UNTOLD STORY 1914-2014"

 

Remembering the hugely successful  JBA 2014 pilgrimage to the Menin Gate, the Indian Army War Memorial and the battlefields of Flanders where the Jullundur Brigade fought in World War 1 realised by the tremendous support and presence of The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment, and largely organised by the enthusuasm and efficiency of the Project Officer, Maj Bob Smethurst, with the total support of The Colonel of The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment, Brig Peter Rafferty MBE and his Regimental Secretary, Col Chris Owen, an educational book was produced by David Brookhouse, Heritage Learning Manager of the Cultural Services of Lancashire County Council for distribution to Schools Educational Centres in the North West of England and elesewhere. The book, which is handsomely produced with  a plethora of excellent photographs and recorded statements of participants in the Brigade, continues through to the present day. 

The book takes the form of Lesson Plans to be utilised by teachers to focus on the contribution that the three Regiments, British,Indian and (now) Pakistan of the Jullundur Brigademade to our joint  and National heritages. It is primarily the work of school children from 850 Primary Schools in the North West of England, a selection of whom attended the pilgrimage, under the coordination of David Brookhouse of the Cultural Services of Lancashire County Council, and is designed for use within schools  to record this particular history of our National Cutural heritage.

David has kindly agreed to post individual copies of "The Untold Sory" to the first ten applicants who email him at:   This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

"FOR KING AND COUNTRY"

The  President JBA, as Patron of 1914 Sikhs, and organised by Harbinder Singh Rana, hosted an evening presentation by Shrabani Basu in the Birmingham and Midland Institute to launch in the Midlands her recently published book "For King and Another Country" - 'Indian Soldiers on the Western Front 1914-18' (and thus of particular interest to members of the JBA). The occasion formed part of the UK wide programme of events arranged by 'Sikhs 1914' to highlight the contribution of the Sikhs in World War and its aftermath. The evening was Chaired by Jim Richards a Litigation Partner of Pinsent Masons LLP who generously hosted the event.

Some 30 members of the public, including local members of the JBA, attended what was a most stimulating and informative presentation which took the form of the Author reading moving extracts from the book, including mention of some of the Victoria Crosses awarded to Sikhs  and afterwards, under the stewardship of Jim Richards, taking questions from the audience.

It is hoped that there will be a similar presentation in London to mark the launch of the paperback version of the book later this year (details will appear in our website in due course).

The book, which is beautifully printed and includes some fine photography, can be purchased now, published by Bloomsbury under ISBN 978-93-84052-91-1 in hardback for £25 and is highly recommended.   

 

   

 eMail Addresses

All members are asked to register their changes in personal circumstances (personal eMail address and contact telephone numbers in particular) direct to The President ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ); this will greatly facilitate correspondence with members.

 

Articles

Articles on subjects relating to the Jullundur Brigade will be most welcome. Articles on individual soldiers, their Regiments, gallantry awards, dress, equipment, battles and related subjects, together with maps and photographs where available, should be forwarded to the President whose decision on inclusion ,amendment or rejection will be final. Submitted articles will be returned to the originator if so requested.

For the current list of articles, access the Articles section of this website.

Note under "The Regiments" that an extra dimension has been added to the History of the 59th (Scinde) Frontier Force Regiment thanks to input from JBA Member Iain Smith. 

 

Purchasing Regimental Militaria

Anyone wishing to purchase items of militaria of the Manchester Regiment (and its successor regiment The King's Regiment and now The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment) should go to www.dukeoflancastersregimentshop.com where many items of interest are illustrated and costed.

 

YouTube

Members might like to access You Tube at "World War 1 - The Indian Army" where some interesting pictorial information is displayed, much of it relevant to the Jullundur Brigade in Flanders.

 

JBA MEMBERS' BIOGRAPHIES

 

 

To add interest for  Members I have decided to publish, roughly once a month, a short biographical account of the life and service of individual members. I will do the selection and try to vary it between the various countries we now live in.

 

Number 2 Founder Member:

Lt Gen Devraj Singh (Retd)

 

I was born in Agra (the city where the Taj Mahal is located). My father Maj Lakshman Singh was in the Artillery but later went to the Army Education Corps. Happily married to Shiela Singh. We have a son.

Commissioned in 5 SIKH Battalion of the SIKH Regiment, went on to command the same. During my command, had the privilege to host Maj Gen Peter Davies, our current President JBA, Brig Percival, then Military Advisor, British High Commission, New Delhi and Pushpinder Chopra for a few days.

 

I retired as Director General Infantry and Colonel of the SIKH Regiment. In October 2014 travelled along with my wife Shiela Singh to France commemorate the battles fought by the Jullundher Brigade as part of the JBA delegation.

 

[Last amended 30th July 2017]