Gordon Highlanders 1914 - 1918

Archive - 2010

Vintage Car Run Sevenoaks to Hastings for ‘Combat Stress’ Sunday 28th March

Just Corporal Tom and Ian Medic attended this entertaining event for southern softies. The route continued the previous year’s run, which started at Chelsea Barracks and terminated at Sevenoaks. This time we started at Sevenoaks and ran all the way down to the coast at Hastings. We were kindly waved off by Major and Mrs Holt. It was good to meet them and talk to them briefly about Great War postcards! – Tom’s other passion, on which they have written the definitive book! But the highlight for Tom, at least, was spending the whole trip in a 1911 Rolls Royce Silver Ghost. Pure magic! With a pleasant drink and at the end, together with a pit-stop half way, this was a very relaxing start to the season. The weather was dry for the second year running – how long can it last, in March?! And, perhaps best of all, a lot of money was raised for a worthy cause.

Stirling Castle, 17th/18thApril

The Gordons were particularly pleased to work at Stirling Castle for Historic Scotland on this mid-April weekend- a fine medieval fortress and the old Regimental HQ of the Argylls- what more could you ask for?!

Stirling

The troops assembled on Friday evening after carrying the ever-growing group kit into the castle, and then, following the field manual, sensibly entrenched themselves in a prominent local hostelry to discuss the weekend.

The day dawned bright and breezy in the Queen Anne Garden, and the lads set to drilling and perfecting bayonet work before the public arrived. Rather than produce and repeat an arena demonstration, we scheduled small talks focussing on different aspects of trench life, tactics, the role of women, etc. These were very popular, and a new challenge for the group, as we stepped into first person and presented them in the guise of a character from the period.

It was readily apparent that Sunday would be a fine opportunity to display our wet weather gear! Leather jerkins, waterproof sheets and mittens were soon running at a premium, as we enjoyed the bracing blasts and chilling downpours one so fondly associates with spring in Scotland. Owing to good organisation on the part of our hosts Historic Scotland, we were able to move to a large sheltered gallery at the back of the Great Hall, and the show marched on!

The weekend was a real success. We managed to build a good relationship with the helpful castle staff, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves in the process. The membership turnout was similarly good, and, happily, we were able to recruit, too. We were joined by Ian and Jude from the heart of Gordon country. Ian joined as a footslogger, and Jude may occasionally add a touch of class to the proceedings as an Edwardian lady. Tom Gordon also joined us, bringing us his welcome experience and knowledge as a serving soldier and Regimental museum curator. Rob Spence, who joined us at Edinburgh, was finally attested, and his ‘Mrs’ Lizzie deserves an honourable mention for again taking so many good photographs of the group.

As our first core event, this was a great start to the year. Having perfected small first person presentations, and formed a good relationship with castle staff, with an enlarged membership, we feel able to look forwards to the events of the summer and autumn with confidence.

More reports to follow.