|The Battalion were stationed in Quebec Barracks and 20 caravans
were purchased and placed round a barrack block, for families. We
moved into one before Duncan was born in 1963. Each family had a room
in the Barrack Block as well as the Caravan. It really was roughing
it. LOL. Bill Dean lived one side of us. I cant remember who was on
the other side. I do remember McClarens living in one. They had two
boys and one Sunday afternoon whilst their mum and dad were otherwise
engaged the boys found some red paint and proceeded to paint each
We eventually got our first real Married Quarter about August 1963
at Dodeshide. It was lovely. Upstairs flat in a two storey block.
In 1963 the Battalion moved to Norton Barracks Worcester and we
were issued a one bedroom, downstairs converted stable inside the
Barracks. It was a bit grim. A mouse lived with us. In the same
block and above us was the McClaren Family. Rather noisy family
with I think by then 3 boys.
The Bn went to British Guiana for 9 months in December 1964 ( I
think Brian was Advance Party) I was pregnant and decided to go
home to Mum and Dad until Brian came back.. I had Wendy in June
1965 and Brian came home in September. He hired a car and moved
us back to Norton Barracks
Our next move in 1965 was to Weeton Camp near Blackpool.
We had a B Type quarter which we lived in for a short time and then
we got the chance to move into a C Type. From my kitchen window
I could see Viv and Joe's qtr.. We used to see quite a bit of each
other pushing prams! ! ! ! !Tommy Clare was our next door neighbour.
Paddy Doyle lived across the road and George and Beryl Aldred were
at the other end of the street. Margaret and Bill Phillips also
lived on that street. I think I counted up once that in about 20
quarters there were over 60 children. A butchers van used to come
round weekly, and there was also sheet exchange every other week.
The days before Duvets.
There was a Nursery for the little ones and at one time a child
in every house had measles closely followed by chicken pox. It was
a long walk to the Post Office on Mondays to get the Army Allowance.
(I think mine was £15 per week). The Post office was near
the main gate of the barracks furthest away from out MQ.
From there we moved to Hong Kong. A long flight with two small
children, which was extended because a Typhoon was expected in HK
so we did an additional stop at Bangkok. We had breakfast there,
surrounded by Americans who were on R &R from Vietnam.
When we arrive in HK it was to be told that there was no quarter
for us. After the call forward The Families Officer had 150 Quarters
taken from him. (Capt. Clare was FO) So our first stop there was
the Golden Gate Hotel. One bedroom, bathroom and Chinese food. I
think we were there a short time maybe a week. Then the Pay Sgts
invited us to go and stay with his family. (I think it was Les Rigg)
We stayed with them for two weeks but our children did not get on.
Next accommodation was 11 floors up a 17 story block of flats, with
Chinese in the same building. Bob and Ray Shaw were on the same
floor as us. A Communist school was beside these flats.They started
chanting the Communist mantra at 7 or 8 in a morning and continued
till the same time in the evening. It got raided one night and we
had a ringside seat. It was very noisy living there though. The
flat was OK 2 or 3 bedrooms and even a room for the Amah. (Servant)
ours did not live in thought but came every day to do the laundry.
£1 per week. Starching was a speciality. LOL.
Eventually we move to Sham Shui Po. Quite a nice flat with a huge
balcony. Lorraine and Derek Napier lived in the same block. It was
handy for Stonecutters Island were we used to go swimming. Hong
Kong was a great for sun bathing and swimming. I believe that that
year the swimming pool was kept open an extra month because our
Battalion was not acclimatized. The parade when the Hackles changed
to red and white was great but also sad. There was a big ball at
the Peninsula Hotel I did not much enjoy those do's I loved to dance
but Brian had two left feet.
We only stayed in HK for 9 months until Brian was posted back to
UK. To St. Georges Barracks, Sutton Coldfield. I don't think I was
in HK long enough to get bored. Life was what you made it. Considering
in the 9 moths we moved home 4 times, I had not got time to get
Ronnie and Rose Wilkinson travelled with us and I think it was
Bob Hope and his wife. Ronnie and Rose came to Sutton Coldfield
but I don't know what happened to the Hopes. Of course St. George's
Barrack was the Depot for RRF.