The many and varied activities by the local Branches are outlined in detail below, suffice to say Branches have been vibrant and active less the London Branch, but matters are in train to turn this around.
The highlight of the past year in Association terms was undoubtedly the commemoration in October of the 40th Anniversary of 1 A and SH’s first tour in Northern Ireland and the losses sustained in it and on subsequent tours of duty. Led by the Balaklava Pipes and Drums, the Parade marched from Stirling Castle to the Church of the Holy Rude where a dignified and thought-provoking service was held. This was attended by widows and relatives of those of our number who paid the ultimate sacrifice and there is no doubt was deeply appreciated. Stirling Branch then hosted an excellent gathering at the Spittalmyre Club so rounding off a weekend that had seen a Dinner-Dance there on the Friday evening, Grangemouth Branch’s Saturday Lunch and then the Sunday Parade and Commemorative Service. Attendance across the weekend’s activities was excellent and many old friendships were rekindled.
The Annual Scottish Branches Dinner was held at the Golden Lion Hotel in Stirling on 23rd February 2013. The work and attention to detail put in by Frank Sutherland and his team was exemplary and all who attended were treated to an outstanding evening. I confess to being slightly sad that A and SH numbers were lower than anticipated; perhaps we should be considering the format and cost of such events and in this I would welcome comment from Association members.
The Regimental Association joined with the Battalion providing Marshals for the Parades held through Port Glasgow on 11th June, Paisley on 12th June, Falkirk on 13th June and Stirling on 14th June.
It was a real pleasure for my wife and I, along with Bob and May Elliot, to attend the Manchester Branch’s Annual Dinner – their 80th. Congratulations and thanks to them.
5 SCOTS invited 100 Regimental Association members to attend celebrations in Howe Barracks, Canterbury on 29th June for the Annual Reunion where we also held our Annual General Meeting.
The vital welfare work of the Association has continued unabated over the past year and I would like to record my grateful thanks to Major Bob Elliot and to May Mason for the tremendous work they put into looking after so many ex-Argylls.
A note for your diaries: the 2014 Scottish Branches Annual Dinner will be held on Saturday 22nd February at the Inchyra Hotel, Grangemouth.
Although not Association led, it has been gratifying and massively supportive to the families of those of our number who have died to be supported by so many former comrades at their funerals across the country. Ne Obliviscaris.